Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Standing Up

I love reading picture books to learners of all ages. I've heard picture books and story time described as "cognitive playgrounds," and I love this perfect monicker.

 I read "Let the Children March" to a class of fourth graders recently. The reading led to some excellent discussion. After we read, and talked, and read some more, we thought about the things that mattered to us. I asked the students what they would stand up for, what they would march for. They made signs for their causes, and we held them up as we marched around the library. 

Books paired with activities like this turn the library into a cognitive playground. I love getting my students up and moving with activities like this, and I love learning about their dreams and passions.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Introducing: the Library Sisters!

What do you do when your little sister finally moves to the same state and lands a job as a school librarian? You share everything! One of the many things my sister and Jackie and I are sharing is a presentation! Here is a link to our presentation! We presented maker activities to go along with picture books and discussed our experiences with the students as we completed these activities. 

High levels of student engagement and happiness during these activities are what makes them worthwhile to me. I love to see learners become in absorbed in the moment, singing as they work and interested in what other students are doing. Behavior problems almost vanish. 


Thursday, July 19, 2018

A Manifesto of Sorts

"I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you."
 from Whitman's "Song of Myself"

I am a big fan of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass and the "Song of Myself".  A while back one of my library superhero friends Heather Moorefield-Lang asked me to write something telling about my day-to-day work as a school librarian. The piece below is what I sent her. Obviously it was inspired by Whitman. I think about adding to it sometimes.  Every once and a while when I need a little boost I read this, and it helps me get back into an empowered, confident, optimistic,  mindset.

 I am a free reading choice warrior one minute and a book cleaner the next. 
 I am the tie-er of shoes and the wiper of snot. 
 I am a change maker. I am a rule bender.
 I am a champion of students - more freedoms, more choices, more voice, more money.
 I am the webmaster.
 I am the school news program sponsor and producer.
 I am the book talker. 
 Field trip planner
 Book donator
 Grant writer 
 Problem solver 
 I am an early adopter.
 Research guru
 Storytime goddess 
 Book repair queen 
 Book trailer junkie
 Mess maker 
 Fine forgiver
 Tech troubleshooter
 Book fair diva
 Bulletin board creator
 Flying by the seat of my pants way too much
 The first lady of Giveaways and prizes 
I am the librarian who lets the kids play computer games because it is good for their brains. 
I check out scissors duct tape and glue. 
I am the YES of course you can (fill in the blank) bring your class in five minutes, check out three books over the limit, use whatever, borrow whatever, 
I am the why not 
I am the come on in 
I see the way some of the students look at me when I read to them, or see them in the halls. In their eyes I see that I am magic and possibility to them. I see that I am a light in their lives.