NLS9 was held in Adelaide on the 5th-7th of July, with tours held on the 5th and the conference proper on 6th and 7th July.
I’ve thought long and hard about what I wanted to say about this conference, and at the prompting of Sally Turbitt I’ve decided to share my thoughts.
The upshot is, I didn’t enjoy this conference. There were some factors that were well within the organisers’ control however there was a lot that wasn’t and was simply about me. From “what could be improved” I found that the breakout space wasn’t really kept for downtime as advertised (it was multipurpose, used for meal breaks, meetings and chill out time) and I also thought that the keynotes had zero promotion about them, and they didn’t even have titles/topics in the programs, so I couldn’t make an educated decision about whether I should go to the keynote or skip it and get some rest. On a personal note, I was worn out going into the conference, and ended up with a migraine on Sunday morning as a result. I’m starting to think that conferences just aren’t my jam – there is so much information to absorb in a short space of time, and so many people. As an introvert and a neurodiverse person (ADHD including sensory processing issues) conferences are really, really hard.
I was disappointed by the keynotes, as some seemed to be a bit too niche interest for me and some rehashed ideas I’d heard before (however, I must also note that not everyone – ie most people at NLS9 – did not have the privilege of attending ALIA Information Online 2019 and hearing the amazing keynotes there). As I said earlier, I couldn’t make an informed decision about whether or not to attend because there was no information given about them leading up to the event. I was also disappointed in the one teacher-librarian lightning talk – the speaker has no experience as a teacher librarian and just presented the sort of stuff we write in assignments and blog posts, not anything inspiring.
While there were things the organisers could have done to improve the conference experience, please don’t take this post as saying the conference was awful. It wasn’t. It was pretty groundbreaking for Australia with a strong sustainability focus and the organisers worked really hard. It’s just I think… maybe conferences aren’t for me.
No work at least Mon-Tues-Wed – ✔︎ I succeeded even though it meant turning down work Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. I worked Thursday and Friday, though.
Get five hours of work done on my escape room – ✔︎ Done. I worked really hard on this game this week. It’s not quite complete but is fully functional and is being play-tested but family and close friends.
Get either Part A or Part B of ETL505 Assignment first draft complete – ✔︎ I’ve completed Part B draft, which means that next week I need to tackle Part A, proof read and edit it all and then it’s ready to submit Monday-week.
Begin work on the other part of my INF541 assignment – rationale for my game and a reflection – ✔︎ These are both done or close to done but very much in draft form.
Work on the readings of Module 6 of INF541 – ✔︎ I’ve explored some more of these although I will confess that I have spent more time on the game than on the readings.
Work on the readings of Module 6 of ETL505 – ✔︎ I’ve completed the readings for this subject.
Edit genrefication essay – ✔︎ This is done, and it’s just waiting on a final proofread.
Week Twelve Goals
Week Thirteen (for me) is four days of study visits in the city and Week Fourteen is my prac placement. Plus my two assignments are due in week Thirteen (Monday and Friday) so this is the week it all has to get finished.
Get first draft of Part A for ETL505 complete
Proofread entire ETL505 assignment and get someone else to proofread
Submit ETL505 assignment
Finish first draft of INF541 Rationale
Finish first draft of INF541 Reflection
Complete the last small section of my escape room
Submit INF541 assignment (this isn’t due until the following Friday so I do have a little wiggle room if needed)
Re-read expectations for Study Visits, and the ETL507 assessments, especially the post-study-visit one
Ideally I would like to write a blog post about the classification of a book I borrowed from my local library, but this is not a priority this week
I ideally don’t want to work more than two days next week, although I will make an exception if the third day is a library day and my uni work/assignments are on track
I’m Week ten didn’t entirely go as planned. I ended up working (casual teaching) both Monday and Tuesday, then Wednesday was taken up by driving five hours to and from Bathurst for the Executive Dean’s Awards, followed by a child’s medical appointment and then the meeting – I chose ETL505. Then I was offered a day of work in a local high school library, so I took the opportunity even though it cut into uni work time. So I only had one day (instead of four) to get the work I assigned myself done. I also had ALIA SNGG commitments to complete.
Week ten’s goals were
Complete ETL505 module 5✔︎
Continue working on my escape room, for at least four hours next week – I got about 90 mins completed so short of goal but I was also assuming I had four days to get uni work done.
Attend the Executive Dean’s awards, which will take a whole day since the ceremony is in Bathurst, a 2.5 hour drive away. ✔︎
Begin module 6 of INF541 – edited to add: I managed to get started on this while we had a quiet moment at work and there wasn’t any meaningful library work I could do ✅
Begin module 6 of ETL505 – edited to add: I managed to get started on this too 🙂 I’ve actually read all the module content for this but I need to catch up on the textbook reading ✅
Attend my meeting for ETL505 ✔︎
Participate in #auslibchat on Tuesday night ✘- I didn’t manage to participate this month as I was exhausted after teaching for two days, attending hockey training and then having to come home and wash dishes, get three teenagers to bed etc. I did contribute something to the discussion the following day, however.
Complete the first draft of my genrefication essay ✔︎ – it’s currently longer than it ought to be – by about 200 words – so I need to cull it down.
Week Eleven Goals are:
No work at least Mon-Tues-Wed
Get five hours of work done on my escape room
Get either Part A or Part B of ETL505 Assignment first draft complete
Begin work on the other part of my INF541 assignment – rationale for my game and a reflection
Write a blog post about Reality is Broken and Masters of Doom✔︎
Start research on genrefication (part of my ETL505 assignment)✔︎
Catch up on uni forums, especially for collaboration on INF541 game proposals✔︎
Come up with a name for my escape room✔︎
Begin work on my escape room game✔︎
Work on some questions June gave me re my escape room game – still in progress
Work out where I am up to on modules and get one sub-module done from each subject (in an ideal world I would like to have completed module 5 in both subjects by the end of the week but 🤷🏻♀️) INF541✔︎ ETL505 – I haven’t done module work on ETL505
Continue listening to Masters of Doom (finished it now)✔︎
I took Friday off uni work (except writing this post) as a reward for a non-uni related goal. I went for a walk and watched almost all of the documentary series The Case Against Adnan Syed (10 mins left when my children came home!). This day off is part of the reason I didn’t get module work for ETL505 done. In addition to these goals I completed some paperwork for my prac placement and attended the ALIA Sydney Social event last night.
Week ten’s goals
Complete ETL505 module 5
Continue working on my escape room, for at least four hours next week
Attend the Executive Dean’s awards, which will take a whole day since the ceremony is in Bathurst, a 2.5 hour drive away.
Begin module 6 of INF541
Begin module 6 of ETL505
Attend either my meeting for INF541 OR the meeting for ETL505 – they are both at the same time on the same day.
Participate in #auslibchat on Tuesday night
Complete the first draft of my genrefication essay
Well, the kids are back to school tomorrow and I can’t wait! LOL! It’s so hard to get uni work done while they are around AND my husband works from home so I have to try to keep them quiet so he can work.
I have my game proposal approved, so that’s good news and means I can get started on that!
This week is a bit busy – today I have kids at home still and Wednesday is pretty full, no uni work until the evening, so I have to make sure I can get enough done and make enough progress on my uni tasks without burning out. Just a few more weeks left!
This week’s goals are:
Write a blog post about Reality is Broken and Masters of Doom
Start research on genrefication (part of my ETL505 assignment)
Catch up on uni forums, especially for collaboration on INF541 game proposals
Come up with a name for my escape room
Begin work on my escape room game
Work on some questions June gave me re my escape room game
Work out where I am up to on modules and get one sub-module done from each subject (in an ideal world I would like to have completed module 5 in both subjects by the end of the week but 🤷🏻♀️)
Proofread, and have someone else proofread my ETL505 assignment (Due 23rd April). Ideally I would like to submit it before Easter so that means having it done this week.✔︎
Read more of Reality is Broken ✔︎ I think I have 3-4 chapters left of this book.
Read more of Atomic Habits✔︎ Finished!
Start listening to the Masters of Doom audiobook I bought today✔︎ I’m about nine chapters in now.
Play digital games for 2 hours✔︎ I’m not getting two hours of gameplay a week. I’ve decided to give up on Limbo – it’s no longer satisfying just frustrating and difficult.
And get some house keeping done – some deep cleaning and decluttering.✔︎
Work on my game proposal for INF541 – this is due right after the holidays. – we have a meeting re this tonight so I will get onto it either tomorrow or Friday. It is due Monday but it is only 300 words.
Complete ETL505 Module 5.4
Complete INF541 Module 5.2
Play board games ✔︎
I haven’t gotten everything I hoped to achieve done but, to be quite honest, I’m a bit over it all. I think I just need a break – I started uni work two weeks before session started and haven’t really given myself a proper break over the holidays. I didn’t do any uni work yesterday or today (aside from reading the comments on my marked assignment, and writing this blog post plus tonight’s meeting coming up). I’m hoping to take one more day’s break and then on Friday write my proposal and once the kids are back at school on Tuesday get stuck into my game plan, module work and the next round of assignments. Taking a break is important and sometimes I forget that. It’s especially important because this year I am doing my prac in the break between sessions!
Work on ETL505 Assessment 1 (Complete Part A and begin Part B).✔︎
Read three to five chapters of Reality is Broken ✔︎
Play digital games for two hours ~
Stay active during the week and don’t just become tied to a desk✔︎
So far, I’ve only read two chapters of Reality is Broken, and I haven’t really set aside time to play digital games this week, howler the week is not yet over (I still have nearly an hour before I have to get kids from school!) so I’m hoping to squeeze in one more chapter of Reality is Broken. (ETA: I did it! I read a third chapter). I don’t have time for two hours of games before then but I’ll be playing the Wii U this evening with my kids and I will try to make more time for games next week. On the plus side, I finished listening to an audio book, started another, finished reading a recreational reading book and began Atomic Habits by James Clear. I’ve incorporated some more movement into my day and I’m hoping to increase it a little more.
My goals for week six are:
Complete ETL505 Assignment 1
Complete ETL505 Module 4.3
Begin INF541 Module 4
Begin ETL505 Module 5
Read three to five chapters of Reality is Broken
Read Atomic Habits
Play digital games for 2 hours
Work – I’m working one day next week
Ultimately, I want to be in a place where I feel I’ve made enough progress to take a bit of a break over the school holidays. I will continue with uni work in the holidays but since all my kids will be home I won’t be able to get as much done, and I actually want to be able to do stuff with them.