Here at ESMS, we’re beginning a raffle for a variety of prizes. You can purchase tickets from the Learning Commons until January 25th. Tickets are 50 cents a piece or 3 for $1.00. The proceeds of the raffle go to All For Books to get books for teachers' classrooms. The winner of the raffle will be announced on January 30th.
A much needed break is almost over. I have enjoyed a lot of good food and time with family and friends. I hope that all of my colleagues and students have had the same experience. We are halfway through this year and we need to finish strong.
The Techsperts have one more book fair to get through. The theme is new books turned into movies. We are already talking about next year's theme. This is good planning. We are working on leave your mark projects and we have some other students helping us decorate the LC. We are excited about our ideas and hope they come together.
Looking forward to getting started with our second semester! Enjoy your last few days of break and come back strong and ready!
Book Fair number 2 is completed! The profits were not there this time. I feel it was too soon after the last one so next year we will only be doing 2....winter and spring! After talking with our Scholastic Rep., the decision was made. The fairs take time for me and the Techsperts. I want to focus our attentions on other things as well as the book fairs. Before the parent group took over, I only hosted 2 fairs. The parent group wanted to make more money so they hosted 3.
I am reading articles for my PDP. I am improving the space plus trying to make the space more critical thinking, problem solving and collaborative. I will also complete a couple webinars on the subject as well. I enjoy keeping updated on the ideas that help us improve our space. Student engagement is a huge part of the ideas that I am researching. I want items and materials in this space to be relevant and useful. I want the space to be used and not just sitting here empty. I love to have students in here using the guitars, vr items, and more. It means that all the time and effort put into selecting things to enhance the curriculum is worth it.
I think everyone is looking forward to winter break. We all need to refresh our batteries so we can finish off the year strong. Everyone enjoy your break and we will see you in the new year!
WOW! This year has been busy. We have added Chromebooks for students to check out that do not have devices for whatever reason. It has made more work for me. We also have had 2 book fairs within weeks of each other. I have placed 2 order for books, both eBooks and hardback copies. Keeping the iPads up and running is a daily task and today we started NWEA testing. Could it be more hectic? I love being here in the middle of everything and helping others. It makes my job very rewarding.
The KC Comets came to visit and they offered us a chance to win some tickets to watch them play. It is a reading challenge. I know a few students are participating. I hope that with the deadline looming, a bunch of students turn in their logs on December 12. The students then can earn a ticket for one of three games: January 27, February 2 or February 16. I am excited about this opportunity and hope it is something they offer us every year.
The second book fair ends this Friday, December 7. The first book fair made a profit of over 600 dollars. This book fair has not been as successful and will not show a profit. Our Prince and Princess contest made over 250 dollars for All For Books that we will spend on the next fair because it will be a BOGO fair. Our All For Books is going to improve our classroom libraries. Our final fair will be in April.
We are improving our space every year. We bought new tables and are working to make more writable spaces. In collaboration with the Instructional Coach and teachers, we are adding materials that will help students and staff with curricular needs plus spaces for collaboration needs plus spaces for personal reflection. Students are adding leave their mark projects to improve the space as well. The space is a very team oriented design. Every year it is a different space and environment. Stop by and see it and us!
After reading many different articles on student engagement, I feel that what I am encouraging my Techsperts to do is the right thing! I want my students to come away from my class saying that I encouraged them to be creative and learn to be collaborative. My students are working on helping others while using technology while learning real world techniques. I believe in my students. What I mean by that is my students want to be proud of what they do. My students want to create things for others to view and judge. My students’ work is viewed by every person in our school and because of that, they work harder to make each project the best.
My students have had to become problem solvers and use their critical thinking skills to work on the technological issues that are posed to them on a daily basis. This is a skill I know will help in their real world experiences. That is a huge part of student engagement is to give them a reason to want to be in class and learn. I challenge my students to be responsible for their own learning as well. I want to build leaders of the future. I realize that I get to select the students who work with me in the Learning Commons, but that does not always ensure that I get all students who are self-motivated.
Reading these articles were not new ideas for me but rather confirming that using student engagement is the right way to go. Student engagement takes energy and the right frame of mind by the teacher as well. If a teacher does not have energy and enthusiasm, the students will not have the drive to put in the hard work it takes. The earlier we can get students engaged in school and classwork the better for the student and teachers as well. Keeping learning meaningful is a great way to keep students engaged. I want my students to walk away each day and say it was a great experience.
I am sitting here and waiting for families to visit our first family event of the Cinema Smash year, I am so excited about our theme and how much we want to accomplish this year. I got the proof for the t shirts and an order form and they are really neat looking. One of our students created the design. A portion of the sales will go to our All For Books to increase reading materials in the classroom libraries. We have organized a raffle to raise money as well with tickets fifty cents each or three for a dollar. There is a lot going on for ESMS tonight, so the attendance will be down. Our 8th grade football team is playing away at Oak Grove while the volleyball team is playing in the gym while cross country team is at the golf course.
The Techsperts have great enthusiasm this year for making things happen here at school. They are very creative with their ideas and great at implementing said ideas. As soon as the book fair is over, we will continue with our leave our mark projects plus plan for our next book fair which begins right after our Thanksgiving break. The Techsperts are getting ready to launch a project where they compile information on resources for the teachers. I hope the teachers are as excited about this as I am. The student themselves are a great resource for teachers and students alike, but this project should assemble good resources to be used by all.
Reflection is a huge part of being a good Library Media Specialist. The other part is input from the patrons. I have been surveying staff and students to get feedback on ways to improve the service and space provided by the Learning Commons. I am still collecting data but am excited to analyze the feedback and put it into action. The space should always be changing to meet the needs of the students and staff. I am always attending workshops and reading materials to make me and the space grow with the future. Stop by and see us sometime to see how things are continuing to change.
Hard to believe summer is over and another school year has started. This is year 25 for me and I feel as excited about this one and I did the first one. Each year is a new start for each of us. I have a great bunch of Techsperts and things are already rolling for our first book fair which starts on September 24. Our theme for the year is Cinema Smash. This book fair is about vintage books turned into movies. The kids are learning about reels and what movies/books are vintage. What is vintage to them is not what I meant. It is fun watching them learn about them. They are already planning decorations and such to make the space come alive.
We are also working on cleaning up the Learning Commons. Book shelves are being straightened and inventory of each fiction section is being completed. The office space is being cleaning and organized as well. Bulletin boards are being decorated. We will start other projects as we get through the first few days of school.
iPads for those that paid their insurance will be deployed tomorrow. The Tech Department will be here to make that happen. It will take most of the day to get the almost 400 iPads deployed. That will leave us with close to 300 left. At this time, I do not have enough space to charge that many iPads.
ESMS is hosting its final book fair for the 2017-18 school year. It is a BOGO fair where you can stock up on summer reading material. Plan to attend the Family Event which will be today from 4-6 PM. See you there!
It is hard to believe that we have around 33 days left of school. Our projects are coming along nicely and the Techpserts are hard at working planning for next year. The eighth graders have almost completed the wall mural for the Innovations Lab. The seventh graders are almost ready to decoupage pictures on the wood to display in the LC. Sixth graders are hard at work on the book fair which is coming up soon.
The Book Bytes Book Fair will be April 20-27, The Family Event will take place on April 24 from 4-6 PM. This will all take place in the Learning Commons. We are excited to have the event with the technology theme. We hope to see you all there stocking up on books for summer reading.
The Learning Commons has been a hopping place over the last few weeks. We have had the Zoo with animals, and we have had kids building land rovers and racing them and much more. Every day we have math students who are working independently in here. We have students checking out materials on a daily basis.... I love the activity and the desire of the students to want to be in here!
This year has been a challenge with the high number of iPads in need of repair. Also on a daily basis, students are in here with problems or questions on how to make the iPad work. Our iPad collection will begin on May 17. The Tech Department will be in charge of collecting the iPads. It is always a stressful time and hopefully it will go smoothly. Please plan to have your child's iPad, brick and cord at school on May 17. Please contact me if you have any questions and I will do my best to get you answers.
Thanks for following us this year and hope to see you back next year!
The third quarter is almost over! WOW! We have been working hard on our Leave Our Mark projects. The mural is being drawn on the wall, the team wall plaques with pictures is being painted, tiles are being painted and readying to fire, the picture wall is being padded and covered in material, and so much more! We have painted more walls and have added vinyl wall sayings. THINGS are looking really good in here.
We have just received a shipment of new books plus our Overdrive eBooks are now available for our students. I am already thinking about what books to add to our collection for next year. Techsperts have been working on getting the genrification process done. The books need to be completed in Destiny. We have a little over 500 left to classify on the computer. It is pretty exciting!