Friday, March 24, 2017

MISD librarians on YouTube

If you are reading this post on email, click through to see a new video featuring some of our fabulous MISD librarians and their baby book clubs. Thanks to Ted Madden and the MISD Electronic Media Services department for the shout out.


Wednesday, March 8, 2017

PD in Your PJs - March 2017

Title:  Literacy = Language Production: Going Beyond the Text & Embracing the Talk
  • Organization: edWeb.net
  • Date: Monday, March 13, 2017 @ 03:00 pm – 04:00 pm EDT
  • Description: Too many use the term “literacy” interchangeably with “reading,” but the reality is that literacy is more encompassing: it is reading, writing, and speaking. Ensuring all students have mastered these capacities is perhaps the greatest challenge facing schools today – and it touches all disciplines, from language arts to social studies to science. How can we overcome this challenge and ensure our students are mastering all aspects of literacy? The answer is simple, although not easy: the production of language. It’s time to get students talking! Join Kevin Baird, Chairman of the Board at the nonprofit Center for College and Career Readiness, for an interactive webinar about the critical role of discussion and debate in building strong literacy skills. Kevin will delve into the latest research to outline priority steps and pragmatic strategies for leveraging the power of student talk in accelerating literacy growth. Topics he will cover include:
    • Using real-world topics to jump-start discussions and debates in the classroom
    • Encouraging students to incorporate text-based evidence in their oral arguments
    • Learning and mastering academic vocabulary through first-person use
    • Empowering students of all ability levels to participate in grade-level discussions
  • Link: https://www.anymeeting.com/AccountManager/RegEv.aspx?PIID=EC59DE87834930 
Title:  Panel Discussion: New Graphic Novels for Your Library
  • Organization: Booklist
  • Date: Tuesday, March 07, 2017 @ 01:00 pm – 02:00 pm CST
  • Description: Get the scoop on the latest youth and adult graphic novels and comics in this free, hour-long webinar. Representatives from DC, Macmillan, and IPG share upcoming titles from their catalogs, perfect for refreshing this high-circulating section. Moderated by Graphic Novels Editor, Sarah Hunter. 
  • Link: https://www.booklistonline.com/webinars
Title:  WE Are One: Accessibility – It’s Up To Us
  • Organization: Simple K12
  • Date: Tuesday, March 14, 2017 @ 02:00 pm – 02:30 pm EDT
  • Description: When it comes to people, there’s no such thing as “normal.” All humans grow and adapt to the world around them. We want our schools and communities to reflect that diversity and make everyone feel welcome. In this webinar, you will learn about the experiences of people with disabilities, and then discover technology to help you imagine and plan how you can make your school or community more inclusive. Join Jackie Novak as she explores a wonderful “It’s Up To All of Us Together” classroom resource for inclusion and diversity. In addition to providing links to U.S. Common Core expectations, it also includes a series of engaging lessons applicable to English Language Arts programs, as well as strategies for assessment and evaluation – all using Microsoft technology that brings it to life.
  • Link: http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2701
Title:  10 Free Microsoft Tools to Energize Your Classroom!
  • Organization: Simple K12
  • Date: Tuesday, March 14, 2017 @ 03:00 pm – 03:30 pm EDT
  • Description: Who doesn’t love free tools – especially teachers? Come join Robyn Hrivnatz as she takes a look at some of Microsoft’s top free tools for energizing your classroom and empowering both teachers and students. She will share how these tools can be used across the curriculum to increase productivity and student engagement.
  • Link: http://community.simplek12.com/scripts/student/webinars/view.asp?id=2702 
Title:  Motivating the Gifted but Reluctant Learner
  • Organization: edWeb.net
  • Date: Tuesday, March 14, 2017 @ 03:00 pm – 04:00 pm EDT
  • Description:  In this webinar Dr. Diane Heacox, Ed.D. will explore well-documented research on underlying causes of low performance and create distinctions between non-producers, selective producers, and underachievers among the gifted populations. Teachers often struggle to reach students who actively or passively resist engagement in learning. This session will identify behaviors that distinguish students who are having motivational issues. Dr. Heacox will consider which behaviors are necessary for success in the classroom and how to remove barriers to learning, giving students more opportunities for autonomy. Participants will be guided through a process for diagnosing specific performance issues and Dr. Heacox will suggest specific and targeted courses of action.
  • Link: https://www.anymeeting.com/AccountManager/RegEv.aspx?PIID=EC58D988844E31 
Title:  Make Magic with Mix
  • Organization: TeachersFirst
  • Date: Tuesday, March 14, 2017 @ 06:00 pm – 07:30 pm CDT
  • Description: Learn to create powerful, engaging, and interactive presentations using Office Mix, the latest Microsoft Office add-in for PowerPoint. Create powerful, engaging, and interactive presentations using the latest Microsoft Office add-in for PowerPoint — Office Mix. Learn to use Office Mix for recording video, screen capturing, adding annotations, making interactive questions and assessments, sharing online and data analytics. You can easily Flip your classroom with Mix while tracking students’ understanding. This session is for teachers at INTERMEDIATE technology comfort levels. You must attend this session on a laptop or desktop computer that has a full version of Microsoft PowerPoint installed. Additionally, participants MUST download and install the free Office Mix add-in before the session. You will not be able to CREATE Office Mix learning objects on an Android or Apple tablet or via Office 365. You can access and use them on those devices, but not create them. TeachersFirst are hands-on exploratory workshops, not sit & gets. We highly recommend that you attend using a computer with an updated browser (Chrome or Edge). Those attending on mobile devices may not be able to fully participate and therefore may not receive a certificate. You are welcome to join on a mobile device, but this may jeopardize your ability to receive CEUs.
  • Link: https://events-na8.adobeconnect.com/content/connect/c1/1116418017/en/events/event/shared/1127345348/event_registration.html?sco-id=2034758128
Title:  Teaching Young Gifted Children: The Whats, Whys, and How-Tos for Supporting Their Needs
  • Organization: Early Childhood Investigations
  • Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 @ 01:00 pm – 02:30 pm CDT
  • Description: Whether you work in a preschool program, childcare center, kindergarten, or primary-grade classroom, you have gifted children in your group right along with children who have a broad range of abilities. Why is it important to recognize and support the needs of young gifted children? What are the best ways to identify these children? How do you ensure that the learning environment meets their needs developmentally, socially, emotionally, and educationally? What are the best practices for fostering an environment where learning is interactive, process oriented, and nurturing to all children, including those who are gifted?
  • Link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9203519631773831170 
Title:  Create a Culture of Acceptance and Kindness in a Challenging World: It all starts in Your Early Childhood Program
  • Organization: Early Childhood Investigations
  • Date: Wednesday, March 22, 2017 @ 01:00 pm – 02:30 pm CDT
  • Description: In a time where there seems to be many negative messages in the media and beyond, we in early childhood programs experience the effects on young children. This webinar will share a variety of ideas and strategies to use in your programs that embrace a culture of acceptance and kindness.
  • Link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7938925130711214852 
Title:  Teaching Digital Literacy
  • Organization: edWeb.net
  • Date: Wednesday, March 22, 2017 @ 05:00 pm – 06:00 pm EDT
  • Description: This webinar will focus on instructional strategies that help students increase their digital literacy. Michelle Luhtala, Library Department Chair, New Canaan High School, CT will outline distinctions between media literacy and digital literacy, and highlight how each can be addressed in the classroom and through the library program. The program will also focus on digital collection development and how using library resources can promote critical thinking, improve reading skills, and help learners better understand the research process. This webinar will benefit librarians, and is a follow-up to edWeb.net Emerging Tech’s session, Media Literacy: A Crash Course in 60 Minutes.
  • Link: https://www.anymeeting.com/AccountManager/RegEv.aspx?PIID=EC58D78987473A 

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Thoughts on Reading Aloud

I've had the glorious opportunity to read aloud to several classes over the last few weeks and it's given me cause to reflect on how powerful this very simple thing can be for our students.

When reading to primary students, I am a fan of the old-fashioned way of doing a read aloud. I know that technology allows us to display the pictures on the screen for everyone to see, but there is just something nice about having little ones grouped on the floor close to me while I'm reading.  I try to choose a large book with great illustrations, so that even if students are at the back of the group, they can see the pictures. I also take my time, putting the book down closer to their eye level and slowly moving it from right to left so that everyone gets a chance to see the pictures.  I love watching the expressions on their faces as they study the illustrations that go along with the words that I just read to them. Depending on the book, I see delight, concern, surprise and often, sheer joy.

Sometimes, however, I see puzzlement or confusion, which lets me know I need to explain vocabulary, an unfamiliar concept or allow some time for kids to ask questions about the story. This is something I might not notice if students are sitting in their desks or at library tables and I am reading from a screen.

All of us who were read to at home as children have a love for books and reading because we associate reading with the warmth and safety of a parent's lap. Being close to the students you are reading to can recreate this warm feeling and help them also associate reading with good things.

Kids get enough screen time. Read aloud time should be the time to help kids make a personal connection with us and a book. It's good for the soul!