Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Where did the time go?

I can't believe we are almost at the end of this school year!  AND I can't believe it has been over a month since I have posted anything!  Lots of things have distracted me (testing, purchasing for this year, planning & budgeting for next year, and my oldest daughter's college graduation) but we have still been very busy in the Curtis Library Media Center!  Here is a re-cap of our fun:

At the end of April, we celebrated Poem in Your Pocket Day by reading poetry via Skype with students in Stephenville with their librarian, Lura Manley.  The students took turns sharing poems for two voices.  

Mrs. Pitman and her 5th grade students provided an opportunity to work together on a Glogster project. The students were creating presentations on inventors and were looking for a new tool.  It is wonderful to see how quickly students can learn a new tool and then teach their peers!  The students enjoyed using Glogster once they figured out all of the little tricks! Mrs. Pitman's students were then ready to work with 3rd graders who wanted to try their hand at using Glogster!

One of the things I am most excited about for next year is having more technology in the library for students to produce projects.  Thanks to book fair sales, I was able to purchase 10 iPads for students to use.  In addition, we will be adding laptops, so there should be enough devices for students to create products during their time in the library media center! 

And then May arrived!  With the end of school fast approaching, I knew I wanted to impress upon students the importance (and fun) of reading during the summer!  We had a wonderful puppet group who read Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don't!) by Barbara Bottner to the kinder students and  presented a puppet show about finding the right book.  They were GREAT and the students loved it!

Mrs. Gwendolyn, the Youth Services librarian at Weatherford Public Library also came to share all of the great things that will be going on at the public library this summer!  Their summer program has something for EVERYONE!! Mrs. Gwendolyn met with each grade level, talked about the activities and read to them!  The children are very excited about the events that will take place this summer!

Every "end of school" post needs a graduation photo, don't you think?  Here is a picture of me with my two daughters!

Happy Reading!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Third Graders "Hangout" with Zoo Atlanta

We had our first Google Hangout in May and it was an incredible experience!  A third grade teacher, Mrs. Crowley, came into the library one day wanting to arrange a Skype with her students before the end of the year.  They were just finishing the Newbery winner, The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate so I thought we might try to Skype with the Atlanta Zoo, where the real Ivan lived for part of his life.  Unfortunately, Zoo Atlanta said that they were not doing Skypes at this time, but would let us know if something changed.  Well, a couple of weeks later, I received an email that invited our students to a Google Hangout. Hmmm, I had heard of a Google Hangout, but had never done one, so I quickly started looking for people to "hangout" with!  :)  

I went to the Zoo Atlanta YouTube channel and saw how cool it was!  I couldn't wait for our students to have this experience!  Not only would they be talking to people at the zoo, but they would also see and hear classes from other parts of the country.  The students prepared questions and we submitted those to the zoo officials before the hangout began.  Mrs. Crowley's and Mrs. Vestal's third graders came to the library and anxiously waited for our "hangout" to begin.  After introductions were made, students were able to hear from Ivan's caretaker at the zoo.  

The students listened intently to Carvel, the education instructor with Zoo Atlanta, as well as Jodi Carrigan, who took care of Ivan for the past 10 years.  It was fascinating to hear about the "real" Ivan and what his life was like at the zoo.  

We even got to see one of his paintings!

Here is the entire Hangout where you can see some of our Curtis students ask questions! Our students are in the sixth tile at the bottom.  :) In addition to the classes that were shown, many other classes across the country watched the live feed of the hangout!  We can't wait to try this again!