Thursday, April 28, 2011

LILAC report: Teachmeet #lilac11

There was a session on TeachMeet: Librarians learning from each other given by Niamh Tumelty and Katie Birkwood at the LILAC (Information Literacy) conference held in London last week (here you see the array of fine china at the British Library). I have blogged about teachmeets a few times recently, so I won't say too much about this, but it was very interesting to hear about the background to setting up the pioneering Teachmeets in Cambridge and the practicalities of running them. We are planning to hold one at Sheffield University in November (possible date is 10th November, and we're having one in Second Life before that!) so are collecting advice.
Katie Birkwood blogged briefly about the LILAC Teachmeet session with links to slides she used at Just to note a few points: the events were self sign-up and filled up extremely quickly (the first time using pbwiki and then with a tailored website); they worried a bit that there might be too many people wanting to speak (the idea is that if there are too many, you draw lots to decide who does) but in fact for the first session 50 booked, 40 turned up and 11 spoke; the second time they allowed a larger room with more informal seating, and more time for networking, including "human bingo" (you have a list of things that might apply e.g. "collects stamps", "kendo expert" and have to find people it applies to); the idea is that after the brief (2 or 7 minute) presentations you have few or no questions, and people can either pose questions via a blog/website afterwards, or via post-it note on a public list of the speakers on the day. It was also mentioned that it was good to have people from a variety of sectors, and they phased publicity: there are a couple of hundred librarians in all the libraries at Cambridge University, who resoond very quickly, so they publicised it via some other channels (to attract school & public librarians etc.) first.

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