Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Exporting Overdrive Read Notes to Google Drive

This is a new feature in the Digital Library. Students can now export notes and highlights created in Overdrive Read for offline use. Watch this 2 minute video to see how it's done!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Summer Reading Challenge 2016

Thanks to everyone who participated in our Summer Reading Challenge this year. We used this list to guide our selections and had lots of reading going on. Six people posted their final reading lists to our Summer Reading Challenge Google Classroom. The reader with the most books read was:

Ro Menendez from Cannaday Elementarywith 25 unique titles read

Here is Ro's list:

Based on a Fairy Tale: Peeping Beauty
YA Best Seller - Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
European Setting- A Lion in Paris
Under 150 pages- Kids Deserve It: Pushing Boundaries and Challenging Conventional Thinking
New York Times Best Seller- The Wonderful Thing You Will Be
Becoming a Movie this Year- The BFG
Recommended by Someone I Just Met: Classroom Habitudes: Teaching Learning Habits and Attitudes in 21st Century Learning
Self-Improvement Book- You are a Bad-Ass How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness
Finished in a Day- Humans of New York, Stories
Celebrity Writer- Chocolate Me!
Family Member- Humans of New York
Graphic Novel-The Lumberjanes Vol. 3: A Terrible Plan
Published in 2016- Rainbow comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss
Summer Setting- A Handful of Stars
Book and It’s Prequel- Book: The Keeping Quilt Prequel: The Blessing Cup
Blue Cover- The Fox and the Star
Poetry-Chasers of the Light: Poems from the Typewriter Series
First Book I saw in a Bookstore- Daydreamers A Journey of Imagination
Library Book- Crenshaw
Autobiography-Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero
Road Trip: The Long Haul
Culture I’m Unfamiliar With- I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban
Satirical: Goodnight iPad
Takes Place on an Island- Soul Surfer: A True Story of Faith, Family, and Fighting Back to Get On the Board
Guaranteed Joy-365 Days of Wonder: Mr. Browne’s Book of Precepts

The prize of $25 gift certificate to Barnes and Noble will be delivered to Ro soon!

Other readers participating were:

Candace Hudson - 18 titles
Sherry Futrell - 16 titles
Callie Dawson - 13 titles
Kyra Harwell - 12 titles

Congratulations to all our Summer Reading Challenge participants!

Friday, August 26, 2016

Epic! App for K-5 students

Your teachers may have noticed a new app on their student iPads that you will want to know about. It is called Epic and it provides access to books, articles and videos. Set up an educator account for free at https://www.getepic.com/educators.

PD in your PJs - September 2016

September Professional Development

Title: Harnessing The Power of Infographics as Teaching Tools
  • Organization: InSync Training
  • Date: Tuesday, September 6, 2016 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm EDT
  • Description:  Infographics are striking visual representations of information intended to illustrate information efficiently and effectively. Additionally, they can be FUN to explore! Infographics are advantageous in learning because they have the power to improve comprehension by using graphics to enhance a participant’s ability to see patterns and trends. In doing so, infographics support learning transfer and retention. By the end of this webinar, you will be able to:
    • Value infographics as learning tools
    • Describe standard infographic types
    • Appreciate the appropriate use of chunking and visual cues in an infographic
    • Be aware of several web-based infographic tools available for creating your own infographics
Title: Fostering Innovation and Creativity
  • Organization: InfoPeople
  • Date: Thursday, September 8, 2016 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm EDT
  • Description:   Fostering innovation requires two key things: an organizational culture that supports innovation and tools/processes that support innovation. Join Brenda Hough and Stephanie Gerding in this fast-paced and interactive webinar to explore how to be more creative and innovative yourself… and how to help others get in on the fun, too. At the end of this one-hour webinar, participants will be able to:
    • List three potential innovation barriers and motivations
    • Cite examples of innovation
    • Describe techniques to foster a culture of innovation and experimentation
    • Recognize the importance of rapid iteration and documentation in learning from innovation
    • Use strategies to balance risk and innovation
Title: Juggling 101: Managing Multiple Priorities
  • Organization: InSync Training
  • Date: Tuesday, September 13, 2016 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm EDT
  • Description:  “Time management” is an oxymoron. You can’t change it, or lengthen it, or shorten it, or ‘manage’ it. This course will help you identify ways to deal with the things you can manage: yourself, others, and the tasks with which you’re confronted.
  • Link: https://reg131.imperisoft.com/InSyncTraining/ProgramDetail/3235363130/Registration.aspx
Title: Digital Storytelling on ANY device with Sway
  • Organization:SimpleK12
  • Date: Thursday, September 15, 2016 @ 3:00 pm – 3:30 pm EDT
  • Description: Want to help students develop their most creative and innovative abilities? Introduce them to digital storytelling, regardless of their digital device! Students can use digital tools to create and share their own stories or experiences, or reflect on what they’ve learned. Join Robyn Hrivnatz as she discusses how digital storytelling can be used in the classroom. She will include information about how you can use Sway, a NEW innovative web-based learning tool that can be used on any device your students may have access to in the classroom. Kids love to be creative and share stories about themselves…digital storytelling is the perfect way to let them do it!
  • Link: http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2487
Title: The Importance of Validating and Affirming Home Language: Key Instructional Practice
  • Organization: edWeb
  • Date: Thursday, September 15, 2016 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm EDT
  • Description: This webinar will be of interest to K-12 teachers and educators at all levels who want to understand how to validate and affirm the home language of students of all ages in school and in their academic programs. There will be a particular focus on writing and academic language. Dr. Hollie will outline three steps:
    • Acknowledging linguistic biases
    • Recognizing linguistic features
    • Providing opportunities for situational appropriateness
  • Link: https://www.anymeeting.com/AccountManager/RegEv.aspx?PIID=EC56D887834938
Title: Teen Programming: A Mover & Shaker’s Recipe for Impact and Success
  • Organization: OCLC Webjunction
  • Date: Tuesday, September 20, 2016 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm EDT
  • Description:  When “Change Agent” Courtney Saldana was featured as a 2016 Library Journal Mover & Shaker, we were treated to a sampling of her outstanding work with teens, and knew that all libraries could benefit from hearing more. Learn about her teen programming basics along with practical and actionable steps for doing a teen needs assessment, creating a teen space and hosting a teen book fest. Courtney will also introduce us to Skills for Teen Parenting (STeP), a program connecting teens with what they need to succeed as adults and parents: how to interview successfully, dress professionally, deal with conflict and time management, care for their child, postpone or prevent a second pregnancy, and more. Expanding from local success to state-wide implementation, the STeP program embodies a wonderful example of the replicable innovation brought to the field by Movers & Shakers.
  • Link: https://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/teen-programming.html
Title: Master Chromebooks in Your Classroom
  • Organization:SimpleK12
  • Date: Saturday, September 24, 2016 @ Various Times 10:00 am – 3:30 pm EDT
  • Description:  Discover ways you can use Chromebooks.  Get secret tips on the easiest ways to get started with Chromebooks in your classroom. Save time and increase your productivity with these free apps and extensions. Take your students on any adventure without worrying about cost with virtual fieldtrips.
  • Link: https://simplek12.leadpages.co/event-9-24/?cc=website-sk12-upcoming

The webinars above were curated by Dr. Daniella Smith for the AASL Knowledge Quest blog.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Mark your calendars: LIBRARY EXPO 2016

Mark your calendars! Library Expo 2016 will be on Friday, October 7, 2016 at the Sockwell Center in Plano ISD.

Register to attend here.

Submit a session proposal here.

For more than 10 years, Richardson ISD and Plano ISD have partnered to present a day of staff development for school librarians in the North Texas area. Library vendor registration fees are used to help pay for the keynote speaker and supplies, so it is thanks to their generous support that librarians can attend this event for FREE.

The Library Expo is also made possible by the local librarians who give of their time and energy to present breakout sessions to their colleagues, serve as session facilitators, and help with event preparations and logistics. If you have a session you would like to present, please fill out the form here.

Specifics on the keynote speaker and breakout sessions have not yet been posted, but this is always a great day of learning and networking for librarians. Attendance is highly encouraged - especially if it is not your year to attend TLA.

Please note: Library Services will pay for subs so that 1st year librarians and their mentors can attend this event together. Please contact us to make arrangements if this applies to you.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Adding notes in an Overdrive Read eBook

OverDrive Read allows you to take notes and highlight sections of text in an eBook. That way, you can go back to your favorite sections or jot down your thoughts on a particularly moving passage. Many teachers require students to journal as they read and this is a great way to be able to do this digitally.These notes are now saved in a user's history and can be found by clicking the Account link when you are logged in to the Digital Library.
(Look for the post next week on how to export these notes to Google Drive! Oh My!)

Here's how it works:

Click or tap and hold a word until the highlighter pops up. Drag the cursor to select more than just one word.
Click or tap Define to look up the highlighted word in the dictionary. Click or tap Highlight to see highlighter and note-taking options. Click or tapSearch to find other places where the word (or phrase) appears in the book.
Dictionary, highlighter, and note-taking options. See instructions above
There are three color choices for the highlighter. Select the one you like best. If you don't want to change your highlighter color or add a note, click or tap anywhere outside of the highlighter options. You can also select the X on your chosen color to cancel the highlight.
Highlighter options. See instructions above
To take a note, click or tap Note.
Note-taking option. See instructions above
Bookmarks, highlighted passages, and notes are saved in the Marks section of the Read menu. From there, you can select a bookmark, highlight, or note to open that section of the eBook.
Note: To open the menu on a mobile device, tap the middle of the screen first, then tap the menu icon.
Marks section of the OverDrive Read menu. See instructions above

Monday, August 22, 2016

Someone told me...

Many times we get questions from librarians that begin with..."Someone told me..." It's usually a feature, product, procedure, etc...that we have had for a while and need to bring back to life or at least make sure everyone is aware. That applies to a question we had this week. "Can users create reviews in our OPAC?" The answer is YES! This is a great feature that lets students write for an authentic audience. The vendor that provides this service is called Chilifresh. It's easy to use and students love seeing their own writing on the web!

Watch the quick video tutorial to get started.

Thursday, August 18, 2016


Favorite finds from around the web. 


Great post on managing your time.





Need inspiration? Here are some TED talks for educators.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Friday Food for Thought: Where to Start

Our new librarians met earlier this week for Survival Training. One of the things we discussed was the importance of focusing on the people on your campus and not the stuff in your library. With this fresh in my mind, I came across this blog post that included this quote:

Those early first-impression back-to-school days when faculty, parents, and students walk into the library are critical.  What they see of the library is what they will think about the librarian. What do you want them to see, to think, to remember?  A quiet, static place with lots of well-organized books on orderly shelves and a librarian who handles a circulation desk or a robust, vibrant, compelling, interactive classroom filled with instructional treasures and facilitated by an accomplished, proficient, collaborative teacher librarian?

If we want to be taken seriously and convincingly as instructional partners and co-teachers, if we want to erase any lingering stereotypes, we must send a clear message: we are teacher focused and student centric. We are not just about the books.
As we start a fresh new school year, consider putting aside your "to do" list and ask yourself this. What do your teachers need from you right now? That's the place where we start.
Read the full post here:

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Fall PD Opportunities in MISD

Photo Credit: Can Professional Development Be More Fun?
The MISD 2016 Fall staff development catalog is now available for viewing. 

Click here to view the catalog.  Click here to register for classes. 

Registration open August 11-September 8.

Login requirements:
Mesquite Independent School District ID = 52564
Your User ID = Your MISD Employee #

Your PIN = The last four digits of your social security number.

Take a look at the following classes recommended for librarians:
  • Google Forms Can Do WHAAT?!?
  • Info to Go
  • Digital Dinosaur
  • Mapping Meaningful Connections
  • There's a Code for That!
  • Genius Hour for Elementary
  • Genius Hour for Secondary
  • Daring to Lead
  • Self-Selected Reading
  • Engaging with Informational Texts
  • Love & Logic Refresher
What will you learn this fall?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The Adventures of Flexible Scheduling

Implementing a flexible library schedule can be confusing. Many librarians are worried that classes won't come to the library or that other teachers will think they aren't doing anything if they aren't teaching. While teaching is important, there are also administrative duties and planning that has to occur as well. This video explains how to manage a flexible schedule and shows what the calendar might look like. It's about 20 minutes long, but well worth the time. Pour yourself a beverage of your choice and settle back to enjoy The Adventures of Flexible Scheduling!