Saturday, September 26, 2015

Catching Up

It's been a different year so far.  To quote one of my newest favorite characters, Iva Honeycutt, not "bad-different, interesting-different."  In my second year in the library, things are falling into place but I still find myself staying late, coming in early, and spending part of my weekends at school.  Granted, I have two kids with me loving to use the high-speed wifi (and sometimes a dog for companionship!), but I just wonder when I'll catch up!

This past week, we had a two-day visit with Candice Ransom, which was AWESOME!  She was able to come two days (Thursday and Friday), so we could work with smaller groups in the library (roughly, two resources classes per day for K-5).  I guess the "bad-different" part was that I was so engaged with her talk and the kids' writings that I completely forgot to take pictures!  I'll instead share some of the display and the two books I've been reading with my 2nd-5th graders in preparation for the visit (all the sticky notes are bookmarks for the different classes - we're still working on the books!).  I have to say, if you've never read Rebel McKenzie, it is now one of my favorite books!  Excellent for older elementary as well as the young adult audience.  Read it and you'll see :)

We've had some great lessons this year, but I still feel behind where I should be.  Have I introduced "Adopt-a-Shelf" yet?  No, and my shelves and the treatment of them shows that!  I JUST got the teachers to agree to send my former library helpers in this past week (we've been in school since August 12) due to the earlier start of the academic day (they only come 1 day/week).  After I "refresh" their training, I'll open up applications for new helpers for 3-5.  I also haven't introduced Virginia Readers Choice to my 4th and 5th.  I know they have until the beginning of April to read the books and vote, but the books are in and waiting on them! :)

What HAVE I done?  I think I did a pretty good job of introducing/reintroducing Dewey Decimal System to 2nd-5th, refreshed 3-5 and retaught 2 how to use our online catalog, Destiny.  We've done an author study in anticipation of Ms. Ransom's visit.  The first week of school we did a refresher on library rules and book care.  Why do I feel like this isn't enough for almost the beginning of October???

Ah well.  I sit looking at my "to-do" list and realize I need to get to the point!  One thing I've been working on today is uploading some of my younger students' lessons/activities.  We have 3 Autism classes and a 4 yr old PreK and a 2-3 yr old PreK.  Not exactly a Dewey audience!  However, I realized I had 6 lessons I had done with them that were pretty fun and successful, covering different skills, that I hadn't shared!  Please feel free to peruse them using the link to TPT (they're also on my TN site as well).  Be SURE to download "Gus, the Dinosaur Bus" since that is a freebie!

If you'd like to know more on what Candice Ransom did with the students (the focus was on writing - wish my teachers had sat in, it was amazing!), please let me know and I'll do a separate post on it!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Constitution Day!

Last year, I had so much fun celebrating Constitution Day/Week with my students!  This year, I'm all into QR codes so guess what?  I added a QR Hunt for my students to review what they know about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights!  I'm going to be using it for my 4th and 5th graders, but that's because with our state standards, these groups have some background info already on this document/how government works.  I figure students as low as 3rd as well as up to 8th can use this packet for review! :)

With my younger kiddos, I'll still use my favorite book, We the Kids,
Image result for we the kids
as well as my packet I created last year.  
We the Kids...An Activity Pack For Constitution Day

How will you celebrate Constitution Day?

Monday, September 7, 2015

I Can Statements

It seems like every couple of years, "they" want us to change how we write our objectives.  We all know who "they" are - central office, administration, newest studies, etc.  So, in my teaching career I've gone from "The student will" to "We will" to "I will" to now, "I can."  The verbs of course have stayed the same and I'm sure you too have that hierarchy of Blooms verbs and "higher level thinking."

So, how does that translate to the library?  Well, it's like the ExCELL program we're participating in now, which I'm sure I forgot a hyphen or capital letter - my apologies but I'm too lazy to look it up! :)  (That will be another post, another day).  Well, I was a little stumped because, with my first year down in the library, I felt I had a clearer vision of what I wanted to teach students.  However, I was stuck for statements somehow.  I went to my friend, Google, and looked at some examples.  I found a fantastic source that incorporated technology - so excited!  I printed and laminated....and then I looked at them.  Should've done that first, mind you.  There was no way my students would be able to see those as "friendly objectives" because for some of them, I wasn't even sure how to explain what the goal was!

So, lesson learned, take two.  I stumbled across a few more examples written in friendlier terms and began typing.  It took me almost a week after my other resource teachers, but I finally had mine up (and looking right pretty, I must say!).  So, since I chose a little here and there from other librarians, I don't feel right "charging" for these statements.  I will probably add and delete as I go on.  I do want to offer them to you, though, because it was frustrating to figure out what I needed!  I hope you're able to use them.

I color coordinated each grade level, but once I went to post them, realized I didn't have enough room to post each grade, so some that were "repeated" (i.e. "I can follow directions given by my teacher.") I just posted once.  I hope you can use them!  Check them out on Google Docs using the link {here}.