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BiblioCat Web Site Full of Resources, Feline Fun


Curriculum CenterThe BiblioCat Web Page provides teachers, librarians, and parents with educational resources as well as tidbits about library cats. Site owner Sheryl Skufca says she wanted to start a Web page that offered practical, easy-to-find information. Included: Teachers comment about the site's usefulness.

Teachers and school librarians looking for lesson plans, research sources, book reviews, links to other education Web sites -- and information about library cats -- can prowl the pages of the BiblioCat Webpage.

Teachers Praise BiblioCat

Sheryl Skufca is spreading the word about her BiblioCat Web site by e-mailing a newsletter to more than 3,000 readers who live all over the world. The newsletter includes lesson plans, recommended books, and information about educational Web sites.Click here to sign up for the BiblioCat newsletter.

Two teachers who use BiblioCat told Education World that they keep returning to the Web site because of the variety of topics and the ease of finding material.

"I have enjoyed Sheryl's site more than just about any other," said Sue Lauderbaugh, who teaches reading in Deatsville, Alabama. "She offers such a wide variety of links on so many topics. There also have been several times when I was looking for specific information for a presentation I was planning or a report I needed to compile. Sheryl always helped by providing suggestions of sites to refer to."

Libby Rhoden, who teaches gifted and talented kindergarten and elementary school students in Pasadena, Texas, also likes the Web site, especially because topics are easy to find on BiblioCat. "It is well-organized ... since she is a librarian and I stress good literature in my lessons, her emphasis on authors and books is very helpful."

Launched and maintained by Sheryl Skufca, an elementary school library media specialist in Ohio, the site offers lesson plans, book lists, and information about museums and authors. Users can access 41 topics, including Art, Companies, Museums, Grant Information, Language Arts, Lesson Plans, Book Stores, and Webpage-Internet Help. A variety of links to other resources, such as additional lesson plans and a newsletter, are also included.

Skufca started BiblioCat in 1998, after she began searching the Internet for useful sites. "I organized them [the sites] and then decided to put them together in an organized manner to share," Skufca told Education World in an e-interview. "I keep it simple."


Skufca chose the name BiblioCat after reading about library cats, which have patrolled the stacks of American libraries and kept librarians company since the 1800s. She also found some appealing cat graphics to enhance the site. "I was fascinated with the idea and history of library cats and decided to develop my theme on the library cats," Skufca said.

Cats -- or at least their paw prints -- appear on most of the site's pages. Readers can also link to sites about library cats and cat graphics. Although Skufca likes the cat theme, she does not keep a cat -- she says she just has an interest in library cats.


Skufca says she gets material for the site by searching the Web for particular subjects, using the Internet Yellow Pages, reading magazine and newspaper articles, and seeking suggestions from friends. She uses Web sites that have been evaluated and tested for their practicality. Skufca also tries to limit the lists of resources so site visitors are not overwhelmed. When she gets requests from people for information on specific subjects, she looks for Web sites and sends the addresses to the users.

Most of the site's users are teachers, school and public librarians, information technology users, parents, and parents who teach their children at home, according to Skufca.

Working on the Web site prompted Skufca to extend her own education. Certified in elementary education, she is working on a second bachelor's degree, in computer technology. She also would like to earn a master's degree in library science.

Ellen R. Delisio
Education World®
Copyright © 2001 Education World


Updated 11/5/2001