Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Friday, December 15, 2017

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The 12 Books of Christmas 2017 from Library Services

Tips for Cultivating Community Partnerships

This afternoon's Future Ready Librarians webinar on cultivating community partnerships has some unique ideas for working with student groups and using your makerspace as an avenue for creating service projects. It's about 40 minutes*** and well worth your time!


***If you don't have 40 minutes, click the gear on the video, change the speed to 2 and you can watch it in 20!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

PermaBound Series Tracker

The Series Tracker service from PermaBound is designed to help you monitor when new titles are released in best-selling fiction series. it also provides a single, convenient location for you to access relevant series content for the series that we track.
Librarians can create a custom list of series that you would like to track over time and receive notifications when new titles become available within the Perma-Bound ordering system. Each month, you will receive two emails from Perma-Bound. On the 1st of each month, you will receive an email detailing which fiction series have recently been added to the tool. On the 15th of each month, an email will notify you of any new titles or formats that have been added to the fiction series you are tracking.
If you don’t see a fiction series that you wish to track, please make a suggestion by contacting us at seriestracker@perma-bound.com.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Teacher Day at TLA

Teacher Day @ TLA has officially opened registration. Are you asking yourself "What is TD@TLA?"  Here is a description from The Texas Library Journal that says it better than I could.

Classroom teachers dream about attending the TLA Annual Conference - and they might not even know it. Books, authors, technology integration, makerspaces, curriculum connections, librarians who want to collaborate; isn't that the stuff teachers' dreams are made of? Teachers who experience a TLA conference could return to their districts as library advocates and collaborators or even become librarians themselves.

Last year's event was amazing and this year will be even better!  Our keynote speaker is the incomparable Christopher Paul Curtis, and yes, every attendee will receive a signed copy of his new book that will be released in early 2018.

We all know that one teacher who loves to collaborate or who would make a fabulous librarian.  Advocate for your library and invite them to TLA 2018. Space is limited to the first 100 teachers and their sponsoring librarian.

Invite a teacher today!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Seabourn Elementary Library Tour

Many of our librarians have expressed an interest in seeing what other libraries in the district look like. Since I am in and out of our libraries all the time, I thought that I would try to make some videos highlighting the decor and arrangement of the various libraries in Mesquite ISD.

This year an existing campus in our district that first opened in the 1960s got a brand new building, which included a beautiful new library.

Watch the video below for a tour! (If you're reading this post via email, click through to the blog to see the embedded video.)

Thursday, November 2, 2017

AASL Conference is coming this weekend

The AASL (American Association of School Librarians) Conference is taking place at the end of this week, November 9-11! 

This conference is especially exciting because this is where the updated national standards for school library programs will be officially released. 

Since I can't be there in person, I will be attending virtually. See the blog post linked below for hashtags to follow and other ways you can participate in this national professional learning opportunity for school librarians.

By: Jane Lofton

Monday, October 30, 2017

School Administrators Conference at TLA 2018

Have you ever said or thought, "My administrators just don't understand how a library in the 21st century can contribute to student learning. They just want me to check out books..." If you have, consider inviting them to the School Library Administrators Conference at TLA this year. This "conference within a conference" will open up a whole new library world to campus and district administrators with a limited view and will also be beneficial for library supervisors who already have a grasp on how powerful a great library program can be. 

Administrators who accept the invitation to attend will also have access to the full TLA Conference and the Exhibit Hall. 

Click the links below to submit your administrator's contact information, then let them know that they will be receiving an invitation!

I have submitted my supervisors' names for an invitation. Why don't you submit yours too?

14th Annual Conference on
Increasing Learner Success through
Effective School Library Programs

It's time to recommend your Administrators!

Dear fellow Texas School Librarian,

It's time to recommend your administrators for the School Administrator's Conference during TLA 2018 in Dallas, Texas. This free, one-day conference will focus on helping administrators understand how to maximize the value of their school library program. Administrators will be able to participate in the entire TLA conference as well as be able to network within other administrators throughout the state. This is a wonderful opportunity to treat your administrator to a program regarding the influence of libraries and librarians on student achievement. We hope that you will encourage them to participate.

If you have any questions, please contact Kasey Hyde. You may also check in to see if your administrator has let us know that they will be attending. Administrator RSVPs are requested by March 31. More information about the TLA Conference and the School Administrator's Conference can be found on the TLA website at: http://www.txla.org/SchoolAdminConf.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

PD in Your PJs - November 2017

The PD offerings below were curated by Daniella Smith and posted on the AASL Knowledge Quest blog on 10/25/2017.

November 2017 Professional Development Opportunities
Title:  Finally, A Guide to Parent Engagement That Works Every Time! (Encore Presentation)
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 1, 2017 @ 4:00 PM EDT
  • Description: We all know that parent engagement in their child’s education is key to successful growth, but consistently engaging parents is at the top of the list of teacher frustration. This year it is time to break down these walls!
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/encore-finally-guide-parent-engagement/
Title: Fostering Student Collaboration Through Coding
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 2, 2017 @ 4:00 PM EDT
  • Description: By 2020, it is projected there will be nearly 3.8 million jobs that are computer science related. Yet, only 25% of K-12 schools offer computer science instruction today. How do we as educators overcome this challenge to prepare our students for these jobs of the future?
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/digitalworld20171102/
Title: It’s SOCIAL Media, not a Commercial Message
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 3, 2017 1:00-2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Social media is a powerful channel for forming deeper and broader relationships with your education community—teachers, administrators, librarians—any educator, at any level. It was dubbed “social media” for good reason. These channels are ideal for digital interaction, sharing, collaborating, and so much more. It’s fine to use them for “content marketing,” but they are not effective when used for commercial messages and as a sales channel. In fact, you will only alienate the community if you post commercial messages on social media.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/social-not-commercial/
Title: Hook Your Students with One of Their Favorite Sites – YouTube!
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 4, 2017 @ 11:00 AM EDT
  • Description: We all know how difficult it is to engage students, so why not use one of their favorite sites – YouTube. To some educators, YouTube may seem to be nothing more than a bunch of sometimes pointless videos, but don’t dismiss it too quickly. YouTube is full of amazing, educational video clips that can be used to “hook” students at the beginning of a lesson or used to bolster the understanding of a particular lesson. This session will focus on some of the fantastic tools that have been created to make YouTube easier and safer to use in the classroom. For those of you who don’t have access to YouTube in your classroom, we’ll look at some other options to deal with that as well.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2983
Title: 10 Ways Google Can Increase Student Engagement
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 4, 2017 @ 12:00 PM EDT
  • Description: If engagement is the fuel necessary for learning to take place, how can teachers use technology to harness the power of higher-level thinking and creativity? Many schools are turning to the powerful resources that Google offers schools across the globe. Join Matt Bergman as he discusses 10 ways in which you can use Google Apps, Chrome Extensions, and Add-Ons to increase student engagement.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2990
Title: 7 Engaging Ways to Ensure and Assess Student Understanding with Technology
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 4, 2017 @ 1:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Teachers worldwide are using various technology tools and sites to make sure students achieve learning objectives. Technology tools can often teachers quickly provide ongoing assessment and feedback to many students. Students can also learn to use various tools to provide feedback to peers. In this webinar, Shelly Sanchez Terrell, will share various tips and tools to help students take ownership of their learning, assess where they are, and ensure they are on track.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2984
Title: Tasks Before Apps – Strategies for Your 1:1 Classroom
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 4, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Effectively using iPads, tablets, and other mobile devices with students is so much more than downloading a long list of apps. Join Monica Burns as she provides tips and strategies for developing tasks for projects and assignments using iPads and other mobile devices. She will share how to create engaging lessons that put the objective for the day front and center while using mobile technologies to support and enhance learning activities in your 1:1 or 1: many classroom.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2991
Title: Is Listening to Audiobooks Cheating?
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 6, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: “Audiobooks are cheating.” These are words that we hear so often when it comes to providing struggling readers with the crucial tools they need to access grade level content and curriculum. In this edWebinar, Terrie Noland, National Director, Educator Engagement, Learning Ally, will debunk popular myths of audiobooks related to academic success.
  • Link: http://home.edweb.net/webinar/listening-audiobooks-cheating/
Title: A STEM Bridge of Black Swans
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 7, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Superheroes have always held an attraction for Dr. Eleanor Smalley, President & CEO of JASON Learning. In this edWebinar, she will discuss how in a rapidly changing world, STEM has become much more important as a future design for girls. These rapid changes are called “black swan events.” She will also discuss how these events have led a bridge to a greater understanding of the importance of women in leadership and careers in STEM fields.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/gtg20171107/
Title: Shifting Our Thinking About Educational Technology: How to Place Tasks Before Apps
Title: Measuring Edtech Impact in the ESSA Era
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 7, 2017 @ 5:00 PM EDT
  • Description: This edWebinar will introduce you to the new approach to evidence about which edtech products really work in K-12 schools. ESSA has changed the game when it comes to what counts as evidence. This session builds on the Education Technology Industry Network’s (ETIN) recent publication of Guidelines for EdTech Impact Research that explains the new ground rules.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/edfocus20171107/
Title: The Data Collection Toolkit: Everything You Need to Organize, Manage, and Monitor Classroom Data
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 8, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Data collection can be time-consuming, confusing, and difficult to manage—but teachers need to master it so they can make informed decisions in the classroom. In this edWebinar, Cindy Golden, Ed.D., University of West Florida faculty member and autism consultant at Florida State University’s Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD), will discuss her new Data Collection Toolkit. You’ll build your understanding of what data collection involves, discover the steps to creating an organized classroom data collection system, and learn the basics of data analysis.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/inclusiveeducation20171108/
 Title: Protecting Your Online Privacy: Risks And Strategies
  • Organization: Infopeople
  • Date: November 9, 2017 @ 2:00 PM CST
  • Description: Think you don’t need to care about your online privacy? Not doing anything shady or illegal, so it doesn’t matter…right? As it turns out, this topic is growing in importance as people realize the long-term ramifications of not being privacy-aware. Understand why protecting one’s online privacy is now so critical and what can happen when one doesn’t.
  • Link:  https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/9091133059966062850
Title: Maximize Student Learning Through Design Thinking
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 9, 2017 @ 4:00 PM EDT
  • Description: The makerspace movement is increasing each day across the United States and around the world. The need to increase the number of students graduating and entering the STEM field is also on the rise. One key to the success of each of these challenges is design thinking. In this edWebinar, Dr. Salvatore Menzo, Superintendent of Wallingford Public Schools, CT, will provide attendees with authentic information on design thinking and its impact on all student learning. Through sharing key elements of a design thinking approach, attendees will develop a better understanding of how it can be applied in all classrooms to increase student engagement and success.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/collaboration20171109/
 Title: Differentiating Lessons Involving Robotics for All Students
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 13, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Do you want to learn how to integrate robotics into the core curriculum and reach all types of learners? In this edWebinar, you will learn how to integrate robotics into core curriculum to engage students of all abilities.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/sdl20171113/
Title: Using Twitter to Build Your PLN and Engage in On-Demand Professional Development
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 13, 2017 @ 5:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Innovative educators use Twitter to share resources, collaborate, motivate, and celebrate the joys of educating the next generation of leaders: our students! Many in the profession have discovered the benefits of building a Professional Learning Network on Twitter, but how exactly do you do this? Join educational technology adopter Shannon Holden as he shows step-by-step how to harness the power of Twitter to collaborate and grow as an educator.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/using-twitter-build-pln/
Title: Storytelling for Community Relationships
  • Organization: Infopeople
  • Date: November 14, 2017 @ 2:00 PM CST
  • Description: Do you want to develop more meaningful relationships with your library’s community? Would you like to create sustainable engagement with local businesses, organizations and library users? Enter storytelling- it’s not just for kids! The people who use the library and live in the community have tons of unique perspectives and messages to share- they just need an outlet. Libraries can play an integral role by giving those stories a platform. Storytelling is a powerful tool because it builds trust and understanding. From podcasts, videos, livestreams and unique programming, there are many ways that librarians can utilize the power of storytelling to build transformational community relationships.
  • Link:  https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3627892878012506370
Title: Creating an Advisory Program that Works
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 14, 2017 @ 4:00 PM EDT
  • Description: How do you create a successful advisory program? Research suggests customizing a program for your school is key, but who has the time and resources to do that? You do! With thoughtful planning, any school can develop an advisory program that meets its particular needs.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/positive20171114/
Title: Secrets from the Front Lines: How Schools Can Boost Digital Engagement
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 15, 2017 @ 4:00 PM EDT
  • Description: In this edWebinar, you will hear valuable insight from library media specialist and technology liaison, Kelly Hladek of the School City of Hammond in Indiana, as she shares their impressive story of boosting checkouts from their digital library by 184 percent in just one year. You’ll learn their proven best practices for engaging students, teachers and the community with their eBook and audiobook collection—including some creative approaches you may have never thought of.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/slcforefront20171115/
Title: Teaching Reading in the Digital Age
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 16, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Have you been looking for practical, user-friendly ways to inject technology into your reading instruction while digging deeper into authentic texts? In this webinar, Jayme Linton will share new strategies, resources, and tools for integrating technology into your daily reading instruction. Participants will explore a variety of Web tools they can use to meet the needs of today’s learners.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2986
Title: What’s Your District’s Story? Craft Your Narrative or Someone Else Will
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 16, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Everyone knows what a school does. Or do they? Is the general public really aware of what goes on in your district, or does the general public rely on perception, word of mouth, or gasp, RUMOR to get information about you?
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/engagement20171116/
Title: Digital Storytelling with Google Chrome Apps: Reaching Out to Authentic Audiences
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 16, 2017 @ 5:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Storytelling is the common thread found in every culture and used as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation, and instilling moral values. Today, with the help of social media and digital tools, storytelling has gone global, making it easy for students to reach authentic audiences across the world. Join Nikki D Robertson as she shares a variety of ways to harness students’ natural inclination toward storytelling with a variety of Google Chrome Apps you can start using in your classroom tomorrow!
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2988
 Title: Classroom Management: Quick and Simple Fixes
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 18, 2017 10:00 AM EDT
  • Description: Do you find yourself spending an inordinate amount of time trying to keep your students focused? Would you like more time for instruction? Are you looking for some easy tips to keep things under control in your classroom? There are lots of simple changes you can make in your everyday routine that will make it easier to manage a classroom full of students. Join Monica Burns as she shares non-verbal cues, narration tips, and procedures that she uses in her classroom every day to save time and help keep students on track and focused throughout the school day!
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2992
Title: Students Sharing Stories Through Digital Storytelling
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 18, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Many learners enjoy listening to stories and creating them. Storytelling encourages learners to use the knowledge they have acquired and apply it to a context and setting in a creative way. In this webinar, join Shelly Terrell as she shares various online tools and Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) that allow learners to create and share their stories digitally. Participants will discover cool digital storytelling tools and lesson ideas.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2995
Title:  Hour of Code: Free Resources to Help Your Students Code
  • Organization: simpleK12
  • Date: November 18, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Have you heard about the Hour of Code and wondered what it was all about? Or maybe you doubted that you and your students could participate. Hour of Code started in 2013, with the goal of having 100,000 students participate in 1 hour of coding activities. Currently they reach tens of millions of students worldwide with tutorials in over 40 languages. Although the Hour of Code has a promoted week each year, this resource can be used year round. Join Brenda Hauff as she discusses Hour of Code and explains how you can use it with your students. She will share an amazing free curriculum resource that allows students at all levels to code and provide tips for using it in your classroom. Brenda will show that you do NOT need to know programming to help your students. You will learn right alongside them, with all of the support you need in the curriculum.
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2996
Title: Top Assistive Technology to Support Grade 3-8 Readers
  • Organization: EdWeb.net
  • Date: November 20, 2017 @ 3:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Join us to explore top assistive technology tools to ignite a love of reading in grades three to eight. Beginning in third grade, most classrooms have moved into the reading-to-learn stage. This means that our struggling readers that still need skill building in reading skill development are often left behind when it comes to accessing grade level curriculum and content. Assistive technology can be a tremendous support to these students by helping them achieve academic and performance outcomes right on track with their peers. Let’s explore the right tools for the right students with the right goal in mind.
  • Link:  http://home.edweb.net/webinar/readers20171120/
Title: The Networked Administrator: Leading and Learning with Social Media
  • Organization: SimpleK12
  • Date: November 28, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Sometimes who you know is as important as what you know. Having a wide range of professional connections not only broadens your reach, it can actually help you learn, grow, and become more efficient. Join Lyn Hilt as she explores the role of the networked administrator, who, as the school’s lead learner, recognizes the value and use of social media to develop professional connections, build relationships and capacity, help create organizational efficiency, and bring innovative learning experiences to students and staff. This session is designed for administrators, teachers, educators… anyone interested in learning more about the power of connected leading and learning!
  • Link:  http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=3001
Title: ESSA and State Report Cards
Title: Social Media Analytics: What to Measure and Why
  • Organization: WebJunction and TechSoup
  • Date: November 30, 2017 @ 2:00 PM EDT
  • Description: Now that you are using social media to engage with your community, how do you know if it’s working? If you don’t know where to start when planning your social media metrics, join us to learn the best methods to measure your library’s social media outcomes. During this event, you will learn how to establish measurable goals, identify key performance indicators (KPIs), and evaluate your social media results.
  • Link:  http://www.webjunction.org/events/webjunction/social-media-analytics.html

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

NBC Learn

NBC Learn is one of our resources that has been around for several years and you may have forgotten how valuable it is. The website has been updated and this video (15 minutes) walks you through the new and some existing features. If you don't want to share this longer video with teachers, there is a shorter About NBC Learn  video that might get them interested. It is found on the NBC Learn Home page under Welcome from NBC Learn. (3 minutes)

Building a Productive Relationship with Your Administrator


In this blog post from the TASL (Texas Association of School Librarians) Talks Advocacy site, a Texas superintendent gives tips for helping your school admin understand just what a library and certified librarian can bring to the table in a modern school.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Digital bookmobile visit featured on MISD's YouTube channel

Last week the Overdrive Digital Bookmobile was in Mesquite ISD at Gentry Elementary. The Digital Bookmobile travels all over the US and Canada, so we were very honored to be chosen as a stop on the 2017 tour! All 4th graders at Gentry are now well-versed in how the MISD Digital Library works and are checking out books to read on their iPads and Chromebooks at school and at home.

Check out the video below to see all the excitement! (If you're reading via email and don't see the video, click through to the blog to watch.)

Monday, October 16, 2017

Get involved with TxLA!

For secondary librarians who are interested in becoming more involved with your professional organization:

The YART (Young Adult Round Table) committee has extended its application until October 20th.  YART members are not only encouraged to volunteer for committees, but also to serve on the executive board.  If you'd like to become more involved in TxLA through leadership or participation, please fill out the YART volunteer form.  Also, please note there will be commitments all appointed committee and executive board members will have, which demonstrates responsibility and a willingness to be part of a professional community serving young adults.  All public and school librarians who work with young adults are encouraged to apply. 

The application can be found at:

Thank you,

Naomi Bates, YART chair-election 2017-2018