Wednesday, June 21, 2017

1-Thing Wednesday: State Award Nominees, 2017 - 2018

The state award nominees for the coming 2017 - 2018 school year were announced earlier in the year. Our DCG Middle Schools students are encouraged to read from the Iowa Children's Choice Awards nominees, as well as the Iowa Teen Award titles:

Over the course of the coming school year, students are encouraged to read at least two of the nominees from their lists, and should they complete the reading by late February/early March, they will be eligible to vote for the building and state-wide winner. Feel free to read any of the books over the summer, and stay tuned for many activities related to these great books!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

1-Thing Wednesday: Google Classroom in the Library

This year our DCG Middle School students started using Chromebooks in a 2:1 environment (2 students for every 1 device), and with the increased access came the use of Google Classroom in the library.
A few of the library Google Classrooms

Every language arts classroom in Grades 6 - 7 had its own library Google Classroom where students could access everything from our library main page to that day's digital activity. Below are just some of the examples of how we used Google Classroom:

  • accessing and viewing book trailers related to state award books
  • using our library Symbaloo to find websites and databases for research
  • accessing state award voting forms

The ease with which students could access that day's work--and return to it as they liked--made all the difference. This was especially true as we worked to promote our state award nominees throughout the year. Early last fall, students visited the library to view a Prezi presentation featuring book trailers for the Iowa Teen Award nominees. Then, students accessed a handout via Google Classroom to track their impressions of the books and make note of whether or not they'd like to read it.
You can access the full post when you CLICK HERE.

Now that students are more familiar with Google Classroom, they likely return to school with a better understanding of how we'll use it in the library. What a great tool to manage classes, share resources and assignments, allow for technology integration, and engage students!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

1-Thing Wednesday: Participate in a Summer Reading Program

Now that we're officially on summer break, it's time to bring back the weekly themed blog post. This year it's "1-Thing Wednesday," and the focus will be on just one thing related to the library, the school year, or the tech world. To kick off the very first 1-Thing Wednesday, let's take a look at the summer reading programs at the local public libraries.

Librarians from the Grimes Public Library spoke with students at the end of May about the summer reading program, and visiting the Grimes Public Library website will provide all kinds of information, as well as allow you to watch a promotional video:
CLICK HERE to watch the video.
The summer reading program began on Mon. June 5 and will run until the end of July. Here's what their website had to say about the summer reading program:

Want to see their Calendar of Events? You can access it from the library website, or you can CLICK HERE to view daily summer reading events

Live in Dallas Center and want to participate in the summer reading program there? They, too, kicked off their program early in June and are excited to sign up readers all summer long! If you're looking for a way to beat the heat, hang out with friends, or try something new to read, why not visit the public library near you and sign up!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Last Round of Book Talks

Seventh graders were in the library again today to listen to the last round of book talks for the year. Serendipity prevailed, and many of the new books that were ordered in April arrived just yesterday, and in the nick of time made it into today's book talk presentation.

The final slide in the presentation specifically promoted 4 of the new titles added just today:

With just a week and a half left to check out books, stop by today to pick up one of the new titles. Or, make a note to pick them up at your public library over the summer! They'll all make for some great summer reading!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Blackout Poetry & Book Spine Poetry

On May Day, how about a look back at April, National Poetry Month, when we celebrated by creating blackout poems and book spine poems. All of the seventh grade language arts classes passed through the library over three days to "write" poetry.

 Students also stacked library books into poems in a book spine activity. After students pulled books to use, poems began to emerge. Take a look below!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Book Talks with a Twist

In this latest round of book talks, our titles reflect a popular expression as we move into springtime and summer: Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.

"Something old" refers to titles we've had in the collection for a bit--like Sanderson's The Rithmatist and Brow's The Wild Robot.

Some of our new spring book fair purchases are included in the "something new" category--books like Ghost by Jason Reynolds and Boy X by Dan Smith.

With classic retellings like Heartless popular now, our book talks also include "something borrowed" with Redwine's The Shadow Queen.

And our "something blue?" Cheating just a little, Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth--its beautiful dark blue cover meeting the need. 

Take a look at the Slides presentation--maybe you'll find something to interest you in this last quarter!

Monday, April 3, 2017

State Award Winning Books Announced

Earlier in March, Middle School students used Google Classroom to vote for both the Iowa Children's Choice Award book and the Iowa Teen Award book. More than 130 students were eligible to vote, having read at least two books from the nominations. Winning the Iowa Children's Choice Award was Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt; the Iowa Teen Award winner was Backlash by Sarah Darer Littman.

Iowa teacher librarians met today for their annual conference and state-wide winners were announced. A drum roll please. . . the Iowa Teen Award winner was also Backlash! And the Iowa Children's Choice winner was I Survived: The Great Chicago Fire by Lauren Tarshis. Statewide, 218 schools participated in the Iowa Children's Choice Award voting, with more than 17,100 votes submitted!

Stay tuned for the 2017 - 2018 Iowa Children's Choice and Iowa Teen Award nominees--and remember, if you read two or more of them, you'll be eligible to vote next spring. These great books make for some good summer reading!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Happy School Library Month!

April is here, and that means we're officially celebrating School Library Month, the American Association of School Librarians' celebration of school libraries, their programs, and all they do. Check out the poster promoting this year's theme "Because School Libraries Empower Students."

Just how are we in the library empowering students at DCG Middle School? With a lot of choice and voice and work and building. We're talking about & recommending books to each other; using technology to lean, explore, and create; make connections personally and digitally; and, strengthening our relationships. Visit soon--we'd love to talk with you!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Another Round of Booktalks

Seventh graders visited the library today to listen to book talks and to visit the Scholastic Book Fair. Some of the highlights from the Book Fair were Exo, The Shadow Queen, and Zero Day.

Below is the book talk presentation--including mention of this year's Newbery Medal winner The Girl Who Drank the Moon. Also featured is a new-to-us sports series by John Coy called the 4 for 4 Series

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

It's Book Fair Time!

That's right--it's Scholastic Book Fair time again! Students and families can browse and shop the fair from Thurs. Mar. 2 - Thurs. Mar. 9, both during the school day and during parent teacher conferences. 

Take a look at the preview video below:

You can also shop our book fair online, where many more titles are available, including titles for younger and/or older siblings. You can access our online fair here.

We'll be running a guessing contest during the fair. Students can guess the number of bears in the container, and the student who comes closest to the exact number will win a $10 gift certificate to use at the book fair. Stop by to enter!

Monday, February 27, 2017

New (Interactive) Library Display

We're so excited in the library about our newest display! A recent Twitter post with the hashtag "ReadIt" showed a student holding a book in front of a Twitter-inspired space, and an idea took hold. A quick Instagram search showed more than 186,000 posts with the "#ReadIt" tag. How could we not add our own #ReadIt pictures?!

To kick off the display, Mrs. Howard and I each showed off what we'd read (and loved!), and now we're ready for you to join us. Stop by the library, grab one of your favorite books, and get ready to be part of our #ReadIt display! We'll add posts to Instagram--be sure to follow us at @DCGLibraries!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Veronica Roth's New Book Carve the Mark

Fans of the Divergent trilogy--and science fiction fans in general--are excited about author Veronica Roth's new book Carve the Mark.
From the Carve the Mark website

Want to know more? Check out the book trailer:

Veronica Roth's official website has now moved to Tumbl: There you can find many more Carve the Mark posts and pictures, like these designs:
Interested? Stop by the library to check out Carve the Mark!