Go to Recommendations: Action/Adventure

One of the best things about being a librarian is connecting students with the right books. I feel like middle school is the time where kids really become life-long readers. They discover their reading preferences and start to read books with more meat to them. I love having our library arranged by genre, I find that students are able to browse the library and find books that are of interest to them very easily. Within each section, I have my go to recommendations that I find myself constantly suggesting to students. I thought I would share mine, and hope that you’ll leave me comments with any others that you love to recommend!

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I love to recommend any books from the I Survived series by Lauren Tarshisto reluctant readers who are looking for a fast-paced read that isn’t intimidating. I’m so excited to see that this series is continuing to grow!

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Gordon Korman has several great action/adventure series, including The Island Trilogy, The Dive Trilogy, and The Everest Trilogy. Similar to the I Survived, these short books are a great way to get reluctant readers to pick up a novel.

Hatchet

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen is one of those tried and true recommendations. Living in south Louisiana, so many of my students love to hunt and fish, so they really get into an outdoors adventure story.

WildLife GreatWideSea AlabamaMoonOther outdoor adventure recommendations include Wild Life by Cynthia DeFelice, The Great Wide Sea by M.H. Herlong, and Alabama Moon by Watt Key. I have multiple copies of all of these titles, and they stay checked out all year long.

AlexRider

The Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz are great action-packed kid spy books that my students devour. Middle school students LOVE a series!

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For my action/adventure readers that I think would also be interested in reading science fiction/fantasy, I recommend The Limit by Kristen Landon and The Maximum Ride series by James Patterson.

AuRevoir  SonoftheMob

For my more mature readers who are into action and adventure, I love to recommend Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick and Son of the Mob by Gordon Korman. I thought both of these books were super fun, fast-paced reads!

What books do you find yourself constantly recommending to students who are hunting for an action/adventure read?

Posted in Books & Reviews, Middle Level Books, Resources & Links | 1 Comment

Bookmark Design Contest

Last year, I designed bookmarks for my students at the beginning of the year. This year, I wanted to give my students the chance to design our bookmarks. A bookmark design contest was a great way to get students involved at the start of the school year!

CMS Bookmark Design Contest by librariantiff

I invited students to submit their digital images or drawings for the contest. It was so exciting to have over 40 submissions for the contest, and even more exciting to see the awesome talent at our school on display!

You can check out the submissions on our CMS Flickr page here. I’m so proud of all of the submissions and the hard work that went into creating them!

I had our administrators pick the top 15. Those were posted on Schoology, our school’s LMS, and students were able to vote for their favorite. The three bookmarks that received the most votes were the ones I had printed!

The students have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of the new bookmarks, and they arrived this afternoon!! I’m so excited to put them out tomorrow, and especially excited to call in the winners and present them with a stack of their very own bookmarks in print!

Here are our winning designs:Photo Sep 04, 4 30 58 PM

Posted in My Ramblings, Resources & Links | 3 Comments

Twitter Boot Camp

It’s hard to believe that we’ve been back to school for over two weeks! The year is off to a great start. I’ve seen all of the students through their ELA classes. Last week, we kicked off our 1:1 initiative and checked out laptops to our students. We have lots of exciting things on the horizon at CMS!

One thing that I’m really pumped about this year is a Twitter Boot Camp I’m putting on for my teachers.TwitterBootCamp

I’ll be holding a 30 minute session once a month to introduce teachers to using Twitter for professional development. I’m hoping that by introducing them gradually through short sessions, they won’t feel so overwhelmed by the idea of learning to use Twitter.

Our first session is tomorrow, and I’m planning to give an overview of how Twitter works, a tour of what you see on your Twitter page, help teachers set up their accounts, and give them a list of folks to follow to start building their PLN.

I’m also going to share these awesome Comic Tutorials by the amazing Gwyneth Jones:

5091498668_3cbdd93c3b_b 5217790680_a812220975_bI think that many of my teachers are at least curious about Twitter from hearing me evangelize about it all the time, so I’m hoping for a good turn out! This is also how we’re FINALLY getting Twitter unblocked for teachers in my school…YAY!

What types of programs do you have planned to support and push your teachers this year?

Posted in Resources & Links, Tech | 2 Comments

Back to School…I’m HAPPY!

It’s that time…school supplies are everywhere, parents are dancing, teachers are getting anxious because it’s time for Back to School!

Honestly, I don’t know if I’ve ever been happier to go back to school. I just have a really good feeling about this year! Don’t get me wrong, last year was GREAT! Probably the greatest of my career so far. But there are some very exciting things on the horizon for this year. Some things that I’ve been trying to set into motion for YEARS are finally becoming reality. And I am beyond blessed to be at an absolutely amazing school with incredible teachers, students, and top notch administration.

Check out our CMS “Happy” video from the end of last school year. When you have such great coworkers, how could you not be excited to go back to school?!

What are some of the things happening this year that I’m so happy about? Number one on my list…social media! I have been a social media and PLN evangelist for years now, and I’m very excited to announce that this year our school is taking the plunge into social media! My school is finally developing the presence I’ve been dreaming about! Parents, community members, and other educators will be able to find us this year on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube! I’m very excited that we are taking advantage of social media to share, promote, and publicize the amazing things that are happening at CMS!

I’m also planning to do a year long Twitter PD course for our teachers. Once a month, after school in a 30 minute mini-session, we are going to meet together and I am going to help my teachers learn how educators can use Twitter to build their PLN! Hopefully by having short sessions on a regular basis, I’ll be able to help them “get” Twitter and learn to use it to really enrich and expand their professional learning. My teachers know that I am such a Twitter advocate that many of them are curious as to what it’s all about and how it can help them, so I am very hopeful that this is going to be a great PD experience for all of us! I will definitely be posting more about this as we get started!

And there’s still more to be happy about, folks! CMS will be hosting the first EdCamp Baton Rouge on September 27th!

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We are reaching out to all educators in the Baton Rouge area (and beyond!) to attend this event. I am excited for this opportunity for our teachers to really shine as leaders…and we get to show off our beautiful new school, as well! More information is available on our #EdCampBR website, Facebook page, and our Eventbrite registration! And if you’ve never attended an EdCamp, you should look for one in your area!

Every year, I try to pick a major focus for myself/the library throughout the year. This year, my major goal is to do more to support and collaborate with my teachers. I especially want to reach out to my non-ELA teachers, get their classes in the library, and get library resources in their classrooms more. Also, the Twitter PD and EdCamp are going to work really well for this goal.

What’s your goal for this year? What are you looking forward to the most?

Posted in My Ramblings, Resources & Links, Tech | 1 Comment

ISTE, Road Trip, & PLN Love

This has been quite a summer, full of fun, travel, and friends. As I reflect on the past two months, I realize how blessed I am to have made so many wonderful memories during the summer of 2014!

This is the third year that my BFF Alaina and I have attended ISTE together, then taken a trip after the conference. This year’s adventure was a three week road trip that took us 4200 miles!

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We started in Atlanta for #ISTE2014. This was my 5th ISTE conference, and it didn’t disappoint. The annual conference is a chance for me to reconnect and spend quality time with my PLN, which I NEED in order to get myself ready for a new school year. This year’s conference was extra special — this was my year that I’ve served as President of ISTE’s Librarians Network and I was recognized as one of ISTE’s Emerging Leaders.

All of our Librarians Network (formerly SIGLIB; even more formerly SIGMS) events were absolutely AMAZING! I was so stoked to finally meet the FABULOUS Jennifer LaGarde face to face at our Networking Fair. Jennifer also gave one of the BEST keynotes I’ve ever witnessed at our Librarians Network Breakfast. Seriously — Jennifer never ceases to blow my mind, and I am honored to call her a friend!

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The Digital Age Library Playground has been one of my favorite events since my very first ISTE. It’s actually how I first got involved with the awesome librarians group at ISTE many years ago, so it holds a special place in my heart. This year’s event was no exception — so much great sharing and networking went on at the playground. I shared PicMonkey, which I use obsessively for photo editing and graphic design. (I’m so glad my awesome friend Nikki Robertson snapped and posted this picture of me at the playground! Thanks Nikki!!)

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Later that day, I was recognized at the ISTE Awards Luncheon as one of the ISTE members under the age of 35 to be recognized as an Emerging Leader. I’m so incredibly honored to now be part of this elite group of ISTE Emerging Leaders!

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They also recognized the award winners at the middle keynote, so I was very excited to see myself on the HUGE screen!

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I had a blast moderating our Librarians Network Forum: Marketing Your Library, which featured Michelle Cooper, Elissa Malespina, and Nikki D. Robertson. We had a packed house, and these ladies shared the amazing things they’ve done in their libraries.

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Our final network event of the conference was the Librarians Network Annual Breakfast and Keynote. Before Jennifer’s awesome Zombie Librarian Keynote, we took some time to recognize the accomplishments of our network and the great leadership team that I have had the privilege of working with for the past few years. I feel so lucky to have been given the opportunity to lead and work with such amazing librarians from all around the world…it’s definitely been one of those “get back more than you give” situations for me, and I look forward to staying involved and plugged in with this awesome group! Shout-outs to Donna Macdonald (new President!), Sherry Gick (new President Elect!), Jenn Hanson (Communications Chair extraordinaire!), and Elissa Malespina (Professional Development Chair!) — such a great team!

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After the breakfast, Alaina and I jumped in the car and hit the road…and the whirlwind began! We visited my family in North Carolina en route to Washington DC. We also made a pit stop at the Poe Museum in Richmond, VA.

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We hit the ground running when we got to DC, seeing and doing as much as humanly possible in the two days we spent there!

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We were lucky enough to spend the morning of July 4th in DC, witnessing the reading of the Declaration of Independence on the steps of the National Archives. So of course we dressed up!

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We spent the rest of the 4th with our awesome friends Matthew & Aimee Winner (and their precious son Jonah, too!). I love that so many educators who started as strangers, then became members of my PLN, and I now consider them to be dear friends! This trip was full of visits with library and teacher friends, which made it super special.

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From Baltimore, we headed to New York to pick up my mom for a few fun days in the city. We saw the sights (including a Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island tour), saw some shows (Les Miserables and Bullets Over Broadway), and saw some friends!

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Our friends Rose Luna and Margaux DelGuidice took us for a wonderful stroll along The High Line.

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Also while in NYC, we met up with Elissa Malespina and her family for a yummy dinner at Trattoria Tercolori.

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From NYC, we headed to our second presidential library stop in Hyde Park, NY to the FDR Presidential Library & Museum. (We also visited the Carter Library in Atlanta, which is my least favorite of the eight we’ve visited so far.) I definitely recommend visiting the home and museum in Hyde Park, it was a great stop! One of my favorite features was the little rooms set up where you could listen to fireside chats.

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From Hyde Park, we headed to Newport, RI. This was probably my favorite stop of the trip! I am ready to start planning a trip back to New England, and spending several days in Newport, for sure. We visited The Breakers, one of the Newport Mansions.

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Our next stop after Newport was Boston! At this point, we were in untraveled territory for me…and I do love a city! One of the highlights of this trip was visiting with Jenn Hanson and watching a Red Socks game from Bleacher Bar…what a cool experience!

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And of course we visited the JFK Presidential Library & Museum, too. From Boston, we took the beautiful scenic drive down Highway 1 to Portland. This was EXCELLENT road trip driving, folks!

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We arrived in Portland in time for another one of the highlights of our trip…a lobstering excursion! Our cruise with Lucky Catch was so much fun. Not only did we get to see the beautiful coast from the water, but we got to participate in the whole lobstering experience!

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From Portland, we headed up to Canada! We visited Montreal, which was very…French!

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We also spent a night in Toronto, then we visited Niagara Falls! WOW!

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In order to find our way home, we had to start covering some serious ground, with a few fun stops along the way. Of course we visited the Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids (and another Oval Office replica photo, because we must)!

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We drove through Indiana and made our way to Kentucky…of course we stopped at Churchill Downs in Louisville.

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And our final stop was to visit the recently relocated CMS teacher Alex Young at her new home in Nashville! Of course we had to see the Country Music Hall of Fame (and Flat Fountain was happy to be there as well, of course).

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And there you have it! 21 days on the road, 4200 miles (EXACTLY!), and countless memories. What stands out to me the most about this trip is the number of educator friends that we met up with and stayed with…so much PLN love!

Now it’s time to get in gear for the new school year. So much to do in so little time…but it was worth being on the road and living the summer life!

Posted in ISTE, My Ramblings, Resources & Links | 1 Comment

#DreamRoadTrip with Roadtrippers!

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For me, summertime means time to hit the road! I’m very lucky to have an amazing best friend, Alaina, who also happens to be a teacher at my school AND who loves to travel as much as I do. This will be our third summer of hitting the road together and we are VERY excited about the trip we have planned. It will start off with a stop in Atlanta for #ISTE2014, and then off we’ll go to see lots of the eastern US!

Last year, we went west after #ISTE2013 in San Antonio. We were on the road for 17 days and had an absolutely AMAZING trip. In anticipation of our trip last year, I blogged about this website and app that I absolutely fell in love with called Roadtrippers (see that post here!). Here’s the trip we took last summer:

Summer 2013 | Our “Go West!” trip on Roadtrippers.com!

Also, you can check out last year’s Road Trip Photo Book and a recap of Flat Fountain’s Adventure (and the answer is YES…Flat Fountain will be returning for another year of road tripping!).

Everyone knows that half of the fun of a big trip is the planning…I absolutely love to obsessively plan a trip. And we’ve been doing just that for months now. Just like last year, our planning started with Roadtrippers. You can see the main points of our trip here:

La & Puff’s Epic Roadtrip 2014 | My new trip on Roadtrippers.com!

I use Roadtrippers a lot for pre-planning, because the website has great filters to use for finding attractions, historical locations, restaurants, etc. On the road, we use the app to find nearby sights that we don’t want to miss.

We use lots of other resources too…travel books, Google maps, local travel guides, basically anything we can get our hands on so we can make the best choices about our time in different cities. I have a Google Doc that has a very detailed outline of our trip (including departure, arrival, and travel times) and links to everything from hotels, restaurants, and sights along the way. Everything is put together in our nice little travel binder. What else would you expect from a pair of teachers ready to hit the road??

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We’ve also made a Facebook page so that our friends can follow our adventures…feel free to like our page!

Now, on top of all of the awesomeness that is Roadtrippers.com, they are also running a contest right now to give away a $500 gas card to one lucky roadtripper…and I REALLY want that to be ME! I’ve already shared my trip on the social media outlets, but I hope that this blog post will show them that I really am one of their biggest fans (I mean…I first blogged about them over a year ago!) and that gas card would seriously help two traveling educators out!

We leave for our #DreamRoadTrip one week from tomorrow and will be on the road for three awesome weeks!

Posted in My Ramblings | Leave a comment

#ISTE2014

In just one month, educators from all over the world will flock to Atlanta for this year’s International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference!

This year will mark my fifth consecutive ISTE conference. My first ISTE conference was 2010 in Denver, and it was a life-changing moments for me. It was my first big conference, and it was there that I really came to understand the power of having a PLN and making face-to-face connections with people that inspire me all year long.

Now, ISTE is the conference that I look forward to the most each year. It’s not only a chance to make new connections and learn new things, but also to reconnect with the people who I now consider to be dear friends in addition to the professional inspiration they constantly provide.

This year’s conference will be extra special for a few reasons. This conference will mark the end of my year as SIGMS/SIGLIB/ISTE Librarians Network President. Our group has gone through some crazy rebranding/name changing with ISTE this past year, but we’re still the same awesome group of library leaders that are pushing to see technology used in engaging and innovative ways in our schools. After getting so much from the organization (and the Librarians Network in particular), I am so thankful that I was given the opportunity to give back by serving in a leadership role. It’s been an amazing experience to work with an awesome leadership team (THANKS Maureen, Jenn, Donna, and Elissa — you are all so great)! This year’s conference will also be extra special because I’ll be recognized as one of ISTE’s 2014 Class of Emerging Leaders. It’s such an honor to be selected along with the others in this amazing group of young educators who are working hard to make a difference in their communities.

There are tons of great posts full of conference travel tips (one of my favorites is this one from my amazing mentor Gwyneth Jones and another great friend, Nicholas Provenzano, just shared his list here). Here are my tips for a great ISTE conference:

  1. Hang out and make connections. This is what the conference is all about, for me! Sure, there’s lots of great information in the MANY sessions that take place during the conference, but I think the most valuable connections and learning take place through conversations and meeting new people. Great ways to do this include volunteering (even if it’s your first conference, get involved and VOLUNTEER!), visiting the lounges, and attending events/parties. And make sure you have some business cards handy for when you meet new folks!
  2. Use the #ISTE2014 hashtag. Apparently the official hashtag is #ISTE2014 and not #ISTE14 this year. If you are attending the conference, you MUST take advantage of the power of Twitter before, during, and after the conference. And if you’re not able to attend the conference this year, following the hashtag will give you a wealth of resources so you can still learn from afar!
  3. Take in the city. I always make a point to do some fun sight seeing when attending a conference. There will come a point where your brain is completely overloaded, so plan something fun that will help you recharge your battery! This year in Atlanta, I’m super excited to visit the World of Coca-Cola and the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library & Museum (I absolutely LOVE a presidential library!).
  4. Don’t forget to eat. I always thought this was dumb when I saw it on conference planning lists…but then I realized that I never make time to eat at conferences because I just get so BUSY! Plan some lunch and dinner dates with friends at the conference. Grab something to eat and drink anytime you have the opportunity. Bring snacks. And water. This is just as important as wearing comfortable shoes and not forgetting your extra battery charger!
  5. Check out all of our awesome events with the ISTE Librarians Network! See and save the graphic below so you won’t miss any of these great chances to connect with awesome librarians and build your PLN!

Atlanta,Georgia,downtown skyline,dusk Will I be seeing you at ISTE this year?

And don’t forget…there’s still time to volunteer for the Digital Age Library Playground…sign up for a spot here!

Posted in ISTE, My Ramblings, Resources & Links, Tech | 2 Comments

The Incredible 2013-2014 Year!

***Disclaimer: I feel kind of uncomfortable writing this post. It feels a bit braggey to write about all of the great things that happened this year. I’m having a bit of trouble processing the fact that all of these things actually did happen this year. I have so much to be thankful for!!!

This year, I’ve had to pinch myself so many times to make sure the things that were happening were actually real! It’s been such a significant year for me professionally, full of so many AMAZING experiences that I will never forget! All of these crazy, incredible things happened during the 2013-2014 school year:

I gave my first keynote at ISLMA! I was a bundle of nerves and excitement leading up to giving my first ever keynote presentation back in November, but once it was go time, I had so much fun! Since I gave my very first presentation at LACUE in 2010, I knew that presenting was something I loved and wanted to pursue. The fact that I had the opportunity to keynote at a state school library conference just a few years later was humbling (and a little scary!), but AMAZING! I had an absolute blast sharing with and learning from the amazing school librarians in Illinois, and they will always hold a special place in my heart for giving me such an incredible opportunity!

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And that was just the start of November. I also got to attend and present a number of sessions at AASL in Hartford with some of the school librarians I admire and respect the most! Just a few days after that, I received the news that I had been anxiously awaiting for months…I became a National Board Certified Teacher! YAY for November 2013!

I was lucky enough to spend my 29th birthday with some absolutely amazing educators in Missouri as a featured speaker at the METC conference. If you’re interested in seeing the video of my Power Up Your PLN presentation from METC, you can check it out here (although I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch it…weird!). I had so much fun sharing and learning with the awesome educators at this FABULOUS conference!

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In March, I was announced as one of Library Journal’s 2014 Movers & Shakers. Seriously, that happened to ME!!! I knew about it several months in advance (keeping that secret was hard!), and even attended ALA Midwinter for the Movers & Shakers photo shoot (shout out to Michael Pilla who took some great photos of us!). The fact that Joyce Valenza (my ultimate school librarian hero and role model) nominated me for this makes it even more unreal! This is so special to me, and something that I will always treasure.

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I’ve always been proud of the fact that I’m an ISTE girl. When the decision comes to go ISTE or ALA (and that happens every year because those two conferences are always at the same time), I always opt for ISTE. I see myself as an educator first and a librarian second, so I’m always going to take advantage of the chance to connect and network with other tech savvy educators. I’ve also been serving on the leadership team for ISTE’s SIGMS/SIGLIB/Librarians Network (I’m not even going to get into the name changing right now…) for several years now, and I’m currently finishing up my year as President of our group. This is why it’s such an amazing honor to be selected as one of ISTE’s 2014 Emerging Leaders! And just when I didn’t think I could get any more excited about attending the ISTE conference in Atlanta this summer! Here’s the video that was part of my application for this award:

And finally, in local news…I was featured on the news last night! Because just one more surreal experience is what I needed to finish off this school year :)

One of our local stations, WBRZ, does a segment called “2 Make a Difference” where anchor Sylvia Weatherspoon shares stories of people who are making a difference in our community. I’m so honored to have been selected to be featured on this great segment! This piece really makes me realize how lucky I am to work in such a great school, where I am supported and respected, with INCREDIBLE students who inspire me every day! And I would absolutely not be where I am today without the constant support, encouragement, and inspiration from my PLN. An extra special THANK YOU to my awesome friend and mentor Gwyneth Jones, for getting together an awesome group of students to Hangout with my kiddos during the recording of this segment!

I know if I went back and counted the adjectives and exclamation marks in this post, it would be excessive…but I can’t think of any other way to describe all of these crazy, humbling, exciting honors that I have experienced this year. Thank you to all of my family, friends, coworkers, members of my PLN, and readers who have supported me in this career that I love so much…I would not be experiencing this success without you!

Posted in ISTE, My Ramblings, Resources & Links, Tech | 2 Comments

Self Check-Out & End of the Year Wrap-Up

I know we say this every year…but GEEZ, this year has FLOWN by! I cannot believe we just have one week left of this school year. As I look back on this year, it has been so great and I have many things to be thankful for. I’m going to write a post soon about how WOW! this year has been for me professionally, but first I want to share about some great things that happened in the library as I wrap up this school year.

Just last March I was pondering self check-out. Moving to a self check-in and check-out was one of the best things I did this year. I honestly don’t know how I pulled it all off before self check-out. I feel like I have been freed from the cord that tied me to the circulation desk, and life will never be the same! I decided to create two separate stations: one near the door for self check-in and one at the circulation desk for self check-out. I made some minor tweaks throughout the school year, and I’m quite content with the way things work now.

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So each station has a unique Destiny login that ONLY allows students to check-in OR check-out. The check-in station is seen above. I’ve set them both up with laptops, because that’s what I had available. Students must have their IDs to check out — they can’t just type their names in (this keeps their information secure). I’ve covered up the keyboard so they can’t even try to type in their names or numbers. I also have the “reset” barcode at each station. Teaching procedure was key for this — they KNOW that they MUST reset before they walk away from the computer.

To check in, they just scan the book barcode, watch the screen for their name, and then reset before they walk away. To check out, they scan their ID, check their accounts for any books still checked out, scan the book, check the screen to make sure it registers, then reset. For me, one of the most important things that makes this work is the sounds that go each time something is scanned. Even when I’m not looking, I know the sequence of sounds that should go off when students check books in and out, and when something doesn’t “sound right” I’m able to help them take care of whatever issue it may be.

A few other updates to wrap up the year…

We had our first ever Book Swap this week…and it was great! I had about 30 students participate in the swap, and they were SUPER excited about it. Although I had a couple of students who were absent and had to pick through the leftovers, this is definitely something I want to do next year (maybe even more than once). Honestly it wasn’t a lot of work (although next year I won’t be doing the swap the same week as book return…WAY too chaotic). I meant to take pictures during the swap, but it was a frenzy and happened so fast that I forgot. Here’s what it looked like before the students made their selections:

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The students said this is something they enjoyed and that we should definitely do this again…SUCCESS!

I never posted the results of our March Madness at CMS…oops! We had a lot of fun with this as well, and it was another pretty easy thing to pull off. I used a Google Form for voting each week. I was very excited to see the number of votes increase as the weeks progressed. I was also beyond to see one of the books on our state book award list, The Fourth Stall, end up in the final round! In the end, The Hunger Games was the winner, but all of the books in the bracket stayed checked out through the end of the year!

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The end of the school year is always a stressful and hectic time (kind of like the beginning of the year, now that I think about it…), but the anticipation of summer and the reflection on a year well done makes it all worth it!

Posted in Library Lessons, Resources & Links | 8 Comments

Spine Poetry

In honor of National Poetry Month, we did an activity in the library that I’ve been interested in trying for quite some time…spine poetry!

In one of those awesome “check out the power of Twitter” moments, Shannon Thompson, an awesome librarian from Athens, Georgia, brought up spine poetry. This is something that had caught my attention before, so I tweeted two of my awesome sixth grade ELA teachers (Alaina Laperouse and Jason Dupuy) to see if they were interested

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They were in, so we started thinking about how to pull it together. When I looked at our library books, I noticed that many of our spine labels covered parts of the book titles. This would not make for pretty poetry. Also, Shannon mentioned that students pulling tons of books off the shelf could get to be quite a mess.

So Alaina (one of the awesome sixth grade ELA teachers who happens to be my best friend) and I took a little trip to a nearby bookstore. We picked books that we thought would make great lines of poetry for our students and snapped pictures. I cropped them down, cleaned them up, printed them on cardstock, and cut them out. Yes, this took a lot of time. However, I now have reusable “book spines” that don’t have to be reshelved! I’m planning to continue to add to this collection as time goes on, but definitely continue to reuse what I’ve already done. I can also share my document with you to save you lots of work!

We were very curious to see what poems our students would create. They absolutely had a blast! I knew I would be impressed with some of their work, and they didn’t disappoint.

We had students take photos of their favorite poems that they created, then post them to an album on Schoology. Here are a few of my favorites:

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What are some fun things that you’ve done to promote National Poetry Month in your school and library?

Posted in Library Lessons | 1 Comment