The 7th graders spent the week in the library as they worked on projects for history and science. In history, students were working on their National History Day projects. They learned how to use NoodleTools for their bibliographies and how to search databases with keywords. They practiced using websites for research and judging websites on their authoritativeness. They got a crash course in copyright and fair use in relation to using images and videos. They also learned how to find books relating to their projects in the Matthews Library and the public library and how to add those sources to NoodleTools.
For science, students began working on their Biomes projects. They started by looking at books related to their subjects – deserts, oceans, tundra, wetlands, forests, etc. – and keeping track of those books by using NoodleTools. They also were introduced to the Biomes LibGuide, which features more resources relating to their topics. Students also learned how to make a Google Site for their topic. The library was transformed into Coffee Shop Mode on Friday for the 7th grader’s work period.
The library’s monthly Book Club also took place this week, which you can read about here.
Much like the end of October, this month’s Book Club snuck up on us! But, we still had our usual brownies and hot apple cider – and a few special visitors: Ms. Batarseh and Dr. Bell.
Ms. B. started us off by sharing that she spent the summer listening to audiobooks. She also brought in her Arabic textbooks to share because she’s currently taking an Arabic class. Ms. B. is also reading A History of the Arab Peoples and Introduction to Tatreez (in Arabic), which is traditional Arabic embroidery. She brought along her tatreez to show us her progress.
Ms. Melinson shared some new books we have in the library: Imaginary Friend, the long-awaited second book by Perks of Being a Wallflower author Stephen Chbosky, is out and it is nothing like his first book. We have a new gorgeous edition of Frankenstein and this the perfect time of year to read it. For Rick Riordan fans, we have the newest Trials of Apollo book, The Tyrants Tomb. We also have a really neat graphic novel about the early origins of rap and hip hop called Hip Hop Family Tree.
Dr. Bell talked about reading short stories by H.P. Lovecraft this summer, an author he previously didn’t like due to purple prose – prose that is too ornate. Dr. Bell also talked about the staying power and influence Lovecraft had on horror and fantasy authors.
Becca shared that she started reading a collection of short stories by Ted Chiang. Clara said she’s still reading Beyond the Know. Heloise is reading Eve Was Framed which looks at the British legal system and its treatment of women. Mr. Wells read Internment and enjoyed it and is currently reading The Testaments, which he likes better than The Handmaid’s Tale.
Ms. Doyle read Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment, which talks about how people become masters of certain fields. Spoilers: you have to love the mastery process. She also read Pedagogy of the Oppressed, a dense book about the role education plays between oppressed people and oppressors. Ms. Doyle also read A Peacock Among Pigeons because she enjoys children’s literature.
For more information on the books shared, visit out Goodreads page.
This week was shortened due to a teacher in-service day on Monday. We worked on Responsive Classroom training with Middle School and discussed case studies on issues of equity and inclusion with High School. But we were just as productive as if it were still five days.
On Tuesday the 10th graders were in with History class to continue learning about how to conduct interviews for their Sophomore Projects. They returned with their English classes to have a work period devoted to working on Sophomore Project research with support from Mr. Wells and Ms. Melinson.
On Wednesday the Seniors had their moratorium in the library where they devoted several hours to working on their college applications and essays with help from Ms. Bauman, Mr. Kuipers, and Mr. Hinojosa. Also on Wednesday Ms. Melinson was a panelist for a webinar, “Activating Student Success with Database Access,” with Gale and Project Tomorrow about databases and how she uses them with our students. She shared with participants three collaborative projects: 6th grade Scientists in the Field, 9th grade Indigenous Peoples, and 10th grade Sophomore Projects.
Ms. Sterling brought her 6th grade English classes in on Thursday and Friday for free reading and book recommendations. Thursday also happened to be your assistant librarian’s birthday!
Congrats to our winners! Prizes are first come, first choose so come on by.
With the Middle Schoolers away on their trips this week, the High Schoolers are back and ready to take back the comfy chairs. This week the Sophomores were in all week in both English and History working on different aspects of their Sophomore Projects with Ms. Nellis (who was filling in for Mr. Crabb who was on the 7th grade trip), Mr. Wells, and Ms. Melinson as well as some guests.
On Monday, students learned about what local sources the library has access to and how to take notes on them. On Tuesday Rob Turner and Elyssa Lee, founding editors and owners of SacTown Magazine, visited with the 10th graders and spoke to them about interviewing subjects for their papers. Elyssa and Rob gave great advice on who might be good to interview and told some good stories about some of their own interviews including ones with Sam Elliott, Charles Schwab, and our own Colin Hanks.
On Wednesday students explored the library’s databases using keyword searches. Thursday was spent evaluating websites and looking at ways to access books in our own and the public library as well as through Google Books and Amazon. Friday’s focus was on conducting research interviews, including reviewing advice from Elyssa Lee and Rob Turner and practicing a proper handshake with Ms. Melinson.
It’s that time of the year when the high schoolers are on their trips and the library is quiet…except for when the 6th graders are in! Which happened to be every day this week since it was their library orientation.
Students spent the week learning how to search the library catalog for books and then finding those books on the shelf via scavenger hunt. They navigated the library’s databases and learned how to do basic searches. Students got to play ‘librarian’ and practice putting call numbers in order.
They also learned how to evaluate websites and drive their knowledge home by playing Friendly Feud, with a mustachioed Ms. Melinson hosting. Students went on a Wonder
-themed webquest to learn more about Treacher Collins Syndrome, which they first learned about in English class while reading Wonder
Reader, we had quite the busy week both in the library and out. Mr. Kuipers 9th grade History class was in the library all week preparing for their National History Day projects. Students explored ABC-Clio and Gale databases, learned how to add database articles to NoodleTools, and created booklists in Destiny, the library’s catalog.
At lunchtime on Tuesday, the library hosted the popular Cookies, Coloring, & Conversation where students munch on cookies while coloring and hanging out.
This week is Sprit Week and each day has a theme. Wednesday’s theme was Superheroes and guess who stopped by? Baymax, your friendly neighborhood robot helper/superhero. Thursday’s theme was Pop Culture and Ms. Melinson’s advisory created hashtags that represented them.
Friday was quite possibly the busiest day in the history of days. In addition to it being Homecoming, Fall Family Festival, and a lunchtime pep rally, it was the beginning of 6th grade’s library orientation and we were visited by author Lisa McMann.
Lisa McMann, bestselling author of The Unwanteds series and The Unwanteds: Quests series, spoke to the Middle School on Friday about how she came up with the idea for The Unwanteds and what it’s like being a writer. She then took questions from students and autographed their books.
Friday was also the beginning of library orientation for Ms. Sterling’s 6th graders. Students learned how to access the library’s catalog and had a brief introduction to databases. Then students did a Silent Conga through the stacks to see where books are located.
Mr. Crabb brought his dog, Frankie, to visit the library for the first time!