Friday, January 30, 2015


Well, it was a quiet week at school, seeing as Juno, Blizzard 2015 hit!! Off Tuesday and Wednesday with over two feet of snow, the Blizzard of 2015 seemed as if it came out of nowhere! We were on the fast track of having no snow days and getting out in early June!!
And with more snow potential for next week we could have a historic winter season! This is what it looked like out one of the library windows! While it is just a drift and the snow was not actually that high, it shows the kind of storm we had!!

Seeing as we didn't have much school this week, classes scheduled for library visits were pushed back until next week. I will be working on website evaluation with some Freshmen English classes. We will go over the 5 W's to determine if a website should be used for academic research. Students will then evaluate a website and determine if it is a legitimate source for research! It is a fun lesson and one I think really drives the point home about not believing everything you read on the web!!
The link to the 5 W's is here: 5 W's Website Evaluation

Blog Book of the Week
The Impossible Knife of Memory / Laurie Halse Anderson
Laurie Halse Anderson is an iconic young adult author. Her novel Speak has won numerous awards as well as being included in many high school curriculum. She knows how to portray her characters as real adolescents and capture their emotions. Her latest, The Impossible Knife of Memory is no different. Haley's dad has witnessed many horrors in the war and their attempt to move back to his hometown and begin a "normal" life proves to be more difficult than either expected. The story really brings out the suffering of PTSD by war veterans and a teens desperate attempts to hold her family together and be the caregiver when the parent is unable to do so. The characters are real, the emotions raw and exposed and the story flows. A page turner and a great read!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Midterm Madness!!!


How can you tell it is mid-term week? The library is overflowing with students in between their exams!!! The library is a buzzing with students before each exam...whether it is last minute check in with peers, relaxing before they take their test, or just moving about before they are off to their next exam, the library is the place to be.
During exams, those that are not taking one come to the library to study and/or is also a time where we have lots of students check out books for pleasure reading as they are entering into second semester and many have some much needed down time! Many students have come in to ask for a recommendation and have walked out with smiles on their faces and their arms full of some great titles!


Shakespeare Said It First (In Print)

another of Mr. Wong's amazing bulletin ode to Shakespeare....did you know these common phrases used daily actually came from Shakespeare and were made popular in  his plays? Romeo & Juliet! Students and staff have enjoyed seeing the history of such popular phrases!!
For example: " wild goose chase" is from Romeo & Juliet






Blog Book of the Week!!

Beautiful Creatures / Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

I found this series to be a guilty pleasure! Suspense, romance, thrill and chills, Beautiful Creatures was a great read! The deep south comes alive through the town of Gatlin where teen Ethan lives, counting the days until he graduates and can move out. That is, until newcomer Lena arrives and his world is turned upside down. Beautiful Creatures is part mystical, part romance part thriller, and keeps you wanting to read more!!
From jacket: In a small South Carolina town, where it seems little has changed since the Civil War, sixteen-year-old Ethan is powerfully drawn to Lena, a new classmate with whom he shares a psychic connection and whose family hides a dark secret that may be revealed on her sixteenth birthday.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Research Abounds in 9th Grade English

The week before mid-terms is always a busy time. Students are using the library for study groups, finishing up projects and preparing for the mid-term week! We spend our time helping students with their research projects, calming nerves regarding mid-terms and providing a place where students can study, relax and prepare.
In addition I was able to work on one of my favorite projects. Ms. Percheski brought some of her English classes to the library to work on their first research project related to the book: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Students compare and contrast three different formats of research; blogs, databases, and videos. I spend the time teaching what each one is, how it is used in academic research and how to determine which format will best serve their needs based on their research question. Students then create a five minute presentation using their research. This is a great introduction to research and prepares them for their bigger research project for third term!

Mr. Voldman's Holocaust & Genocide class have been in the library all week presenting their group projects. Students have created displays on a topic related to the Holocaust.
The displays consist of both a physical product as well as a technology component. All of his classes come to the library to observe and comment on each project. The library looks like a mini museum!!! Great to see students observing and commenting on each others work!

 Blog Book of the Week: Persepolis / Marjane Satrapi
Mr. Wong calls this book: "insanely good" A graphic novel and one of the first to take hold in main stream, this is a memoir of a little girl and her experience growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. The following summary from the publisher really says it best:

Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran: of the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life and of the enormous toll repressive regimes exact on the individual spirit. Marjane’s child's-eye-view of dethroned emperors, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn as she does the history of this fascinating country and of her own extraordinary family. Intensely personal, profoundly political, and wholly original, Persepolis is at once a story of growing up and a stunning reminder of the human cost of war and political repression. It shows how we carry on, through laughter and tears, in the face of absurdity. And, finally, it introduces us to an irresistible little girl with whom we cannot help but fall in love.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year!! After a much needed winter break, we are back at school ready to start the new year off with positive energy, lots of classes in the library and a commitment to reading great books! We are beginning to book up with classes ready to tackle the second semester with research projects galore! Looking forward to watching the process of research unfold with students in all grades!
Ms. Carrick has challenged the library teachers and assistants in the district as well as our Students As Readers group to the 2015 Reading Challenge! The challenge asks people to read books in various categories such as: "Read an author with the same initials as you" or "Read a book by a new author" You have a year to do it! The challenge can be found here! And Look, our youngest members are already starting!!


Blog Book of the Week: 

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail / Cheryl Strayed
Summary: Cheryl Strayed recounts the impact of her mother's death on her life at age twenty-two and chronicles her experiences after she made the impulsive decision to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert all the way into Washington State.
Ms. Carrick read this book over the vacation and described it as compelling, reckless and ultimately positive.