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Indiana school librarian is tops in tweets

Sherry Gick, Library and Instructional Technology Specialist, Rossville Consolidated Schools, Rossville, IN

Sherry Gick, Library and Instructional Technology Specialist, Rossville Consolidated Schools, Rossville, IN

Sherry Gick, Library and Instructional Technology Specialist with the Rossville Consolidated Schools in Rossville, Indiana was recently honored by two different organizations for her tweets. Sherry was named a finalist in the 2014 Edublog Awards in the “Best individual tweeter” category, as well as being named by Scholastic as one of “10 school librarians to follow on Twitter.”

Sherry has been the teacher-librarian for Rossville Consolidated Schools for the last five years, she supervises the elementary and the middle/high school libraries and teaches various classes. This year, her title and role changed somewhat, and she is now the Library and Instructional Technology Specialist. In her new role, she still supervises both libraries with the help of assistants to take care of the day-to-day tasks, and she also works with teachers K-12 to integrate technology into their daily lessons and classrooms. She says “we are on the verge of being 1:1 corporation wide for the 2015-2016 school year.” During the “gap” year, her focus is on developing several monthly professional development topics for teachers, as well as working with them individually to help them feel more comfortable with their use and implementation of technology.

Why should school librarians be tweeting?

Sherry has been called a “social media savvy school librarian.” She says that it is important for school librarians to engage in social media because they are often the only ones in their school buildings or even their entire corporations who do their job. Sure, there are other teachers, but the role of a teacher-librarian is quite complex and vast. “We are ‘lone rangers'” she says, “and that in itself can be quite daunting. For me, social media outlets like Twitter immediately bring other experts to me and give me a sounding board of librarians who are in similar situations.” Sherry says that sharing ideas with each other and hearing suggestions from others makes her better at her job. “I am constantly inspired by amazing teacher-librarians around the world and can’t imagine not having my network of friends on which to rely upon.”

Sherry has been asked by many how, as a school librarian, mother of two and a runner, she has the time to tweet and blog. She says that “finding the time to do something is the same for every person. You make time for what you value and enjoy.” For Sherry, that is connecting and learning. “Talking on Twitter is a natural part of my day” she says. “My connections on Twitter have become more than just colleagues; many are now close, personal friends, whom I’ve met face to face multiple times.” What would a day without Twitter be like for Sherry? She can’t imagine it.

What makes Sherry’s tweets so terrific?

Sherry says she is the type of tweeter who goes beyond just sharing library ideas. She is a real person on Twitter, who shares more than just articles and tips that she has found or read. She interacts on a myriad of topics, including books she has read, lessons taught, miles run, podcasts listened to, TV shows enjoyed, and even about her family. She recognizes that not everyone may appreciate the personal information, but she believes in transparency and knows that “each of these topics (and more) make me who I am and play a role in how I interact as a librarian.”

During December, many of Sherry’s tweets focused on #hourofcode and teaching beginning computer coding to as many students as possible at the Rossville schools. For more information on this amazing project visit She says that in 2015, “I hope to tweet about the advances our technology committee is making in our 1:1 journey at Rossville, more helpful professional development sessions for my teachers, as well as connecting with teacher-librarian friends across the country for mystery skype visits and World Read Aloud Day in March.”

Sherry’s tips for librarians who want to strengthen their social media presence

“Don’t be afraid to jump in!” According to Sherry, the library community on Twitter is very accepting and helpful. “Twitter is great for finding ideas, but for me this is only scratching the surface.” She says that exchanging ideas and interacting with others is “where the magic truly happens.” Sherry strongly recommends the #TLChat community for school librarians. “This hashtag is active 24/7 and is vital to my professional development.” The community extends beyond Twitter at the TL Virtual Cafe.

Where to find Sherry

Sherry can be found on Twitter at @LibraryFanatic. She is also active on Instagram and Facebook. The newest social media tool she has been using is Voxer. In addition to her personal accounts, she also has Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts for her middle/high school library (@RMHSLibrary) to connect with students, parents, and more.