So thrilled to have my 2013-2014 Library Advisory Team in place!
I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about how I can best keep the lines of communication open with the teachers in my school, and I believe that an advocacy team will be the most effective way to do that.
I shared my main reading goals for the year in a previous post, and next Monday I’ll be discussing some of those plans with my new team so that we can decide on the best ways to implement (or modify) them.
Thinking about starting your own advisory group? Click here for more details about my program.
I’d love to hear how you are working with teachers in your school. Please leave a note in the comments sharing your advocacy program!
p.s. There were codes inside the bags of candy bars I bought to enter online so that the candy company will make a donation to RIF! How cool is it that?!
I went off the grid last week during Spring Break, and what better way to return than with the TL Cafe session for April! Tonight’s topic is The Connected Concierge in Your School and Classroom, hosted by Tiffany Whitehead (aka The Mighty Little Librarian) and Nick Provenzano (aka The Nerdy Teacher) at 8:00 pm EST.
Last time I tried to participate, I had technical difficulties with my computer. I’m crossing my fingers that I won’t have any problems accessing Blackboard tonight. See you there!
Updated 9:45 pm: No technical difficulties tonight! If you missed the chat, catch the archive here!
Whew! I spent most of yesterday book-talking biographies to our 4th grade classes in preparation for a research project they are beginning. Luckily our 4th grade teachers were agreeable to allowing students free rein (within reason!) in choosing the person they want to read about, because with two other grade levels also doing biography projects this month, we’re starting to run out of books!
I took that opportunity to hand-pick some titles from our biography collection that are often overlooked. The books had to meet the following criteria:
- not too easy, not too hard – I discussed the students’ reading levels with the teachers ahead of time
- not too long, not too short – teachers want to be done with this project before MAP testing begins on February 28, so most students will not have time to read over 100 pages before beginning the writing portion of the project
- cover the person’s life from beginning to end – some biographies focus on a specific time period (such as childhood) or a single event (discovering electricity), but for this project students needed a broad overview of an entire lifetime
- include the nonfiction text features they have been discussing this year – most of the books I used had a table of contents and/or an index
- present the story in a fairly straightforward way – figurative language and flashbacks and free verse definitely have their place in the world of biographies, but for this assignment students are learning to pick out facts and take notes, so I didn’t want to make it more difficult for them than necessary
This proved to be a great “teachable moment” for me, because under this type of close scrutiny I could see where we had gaps in our biography collection, and which materials need to be updated. Students who did not want to read one of the books I shared were free to search for someone else, and that also provided some valuable insight into which people our students are most interested in reading about.