Week in Review: Classwork & Checkers

The 6th graders were back this week to continue their research on learning differences. To encourage their quiet research, students worked with a “crackling fire” in the background.

Also this week, Gavin brought Chinese Checkers and struck up a game with new student Jiayu.

February is Black History Month. The library is participating in a #readingblackout by only featuring African American authors on our end cap displays. Come view (and check out books from) our displays or view them on the library’s Instagram, where a new display will be featured every week.

Week in Review: Countdown to Thanksgiving Break

It was business as usual this week as we head toward Thanksgiving break. Ms. Kahn’s 8th grade History class returned on Monday to continue work on their NHD projects. This time they found books related to their topics and imported sources into NoodleTools. The rest of the week featured the 10th graders working on their Sophomore Projects. Students spent the week learning how to properly cite sources and beginning the early drafts of their paper.

Thursday was the High School’s annual Thanksgiving lunch where students sit with their advisory and enjoy turkey sandwiches and side dishes. Ms. Melinson’s advisory brought mashed potatoes, gravy, apple pie, cider, ice cream, and cookies. Cheese on apple pie was a total hit!

Students from Ms Melinson’s advisory went with Mrs. Bauman to deliver some snacks they collected for Dyer Kelly School and get a tour of the newly updated school.

Week in Review: 8th Grade NHD

Mrs. Kahn’s 8th grade History classes spent the shortened week in the library preparing for their National History Day projects. Students had a refresher using NoodleTools, using databases, and evaluating websites.

As part of their lesson on community, a group of pre-k students visited with Ms. Melinson and Mrs. Strong to learn about the Country Day community and the jobs in it. Students viewed tools the library commonly uses, observed how older students use the library, and asked questions. Students also showed us their “magic rock” pose.

On Friday, we held our monthly Book Club with hot apple cider and brownies. Look forward to our Book Club post next week! Also on Friday, the Cooking Club held their first club meeting just outside of the library. They tried drinks from around the world. In puzzle-related news, students are making great progress on the current book-themed puzzle. It got complicated at the end, but it should be completed any day now!

Bonus:

Ms. Mitchell-Vayner brought her dog, Lieutenant Commander Data, in for a visit!

Week in Review: Events galore!

The Sophomores spent the week in the library working on their Projects. Students started making an outline for their paper and worked more with databases. They also had work days where they could work on different aspects of their projects with help from Ms. Melinson, Mr. Crabb, and Mr. Wells.

The rest of the week was spent with one event after another. This week is French Week and to celebrate, the library hosted Cafe Panache on Tuesday as they returned for another delightful performance of French cafe songs from the 1930s and 1940s.

On Thursday the Glass Knife held their first Speakeasy of the school year. Students and faculty read poems by fairy lights as the audience snacked on cheese, bread, and desserts. We even had a student sing and play ukulele this year! Click through the slide show to view participants.

Also on Thursday, French teachers Mr. Day and Ms. Meyers hosted a game of Kahoots in the library in honor of French Week. Kahoots is a trivia game where students participate by using their phones or computers to answers questions. The theme of these questions was French culture.

Friday was Rockvember Fest! Rockvember Fest is a fun day where students meet with their advisors to go over their current grades and then participate in a variety of activities. Ms. Melinson’s advisory made breakfast in the morning. At lunchtime, the library was host to puzzles and Jenga and later, another round of Kahoots.

Bonus:

We got two doggy visitors this week!

Week in Review: 7th Grade Takeover

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.

Week in Review: Sophomore Takeover

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.

Week in Review: 6th Grade Library Orientation

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.

Week in Review: Shenanigans

We had a fun mix of academics and shenanigans this week. On Monday the Sophomores had a one-two punch of Sophomore Project work. First, in English class, they worked on some preliminary research for their Sophomore Projects. Then in History class, students walked around the track with partners and discussed what their projects are about. Then, in the garden (when it wasn’t rainy), students shared what their partner’s project was about.

On Wednesday we had our first Book Club of the school year. Thursday was picture day for the Middle & High School, and because the pictures are taken in the library, we got to see some of the wacky and lovely ways the Seniors dressed up for their photo-ops, including Jackson M.’s behind-the-scenes “Bachelor” photo shoot.

Friday was the High School’s annual Ancil Hoffman flag football game. The quads were awash in red and black spirit and decorations.

Also happening on Friday was the Climate Strike, which the Middle School science department participated in by creating a large chalk mural. The theme was “What do you want your Earth to look like in 50 years?” and students from 6-8th grade science classes drew various scenarios they thought might happen, both good and bad. Check out the slideshow below to view their work!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Week in Review: Sophomore Project Extravaganza

The Sophomores took over the library this week as they worked on various aspects of their Projects. At the beginning of the week, they learned about focusing their topics, paraphrasing, and using NoodleTools by completing their Zombie Issues assignments. Students worked in pairs to learn about frequent mistakes made in NoodleTools by evaluating sources and notecards about zombies. They also learned about formulating “The Question,” essential to their research.

On Thursday librarians from the Sacramento Public Library visited to talk about the Sacramento Room at the Central Library, the local Arden-Dimick Library, and to deliver their library cards. Sophomores also learned about the resources available online and in the library. On Friday the Sophomores journeyed to the Sacramento Room where they got a tour and an up-close look at some of the Room’s more interesting pieces. Archivist James Scott showed students a copy of History of the World from 1490. He also showed students William T. Vollmann’s Thirteen Stories, which happens to have a poisonous cover and cow’s teeth lining the case. Neat!

In other news, the Chinese Club met on Wednesday to learn about and share different types of mooncakes to celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival, a harvest festival celebrated by our Chinese and Vietnamese students.

Later one of our doggie patrons, Buster stopped by for a visit.

APUSH Book Club

For one of their final projects of the year (and the final collaboration of Ms. Nellis and Ms. Melinson), Ms. Nellis’ AP U.S. History class read historical novels and then discussed them with their class. Like our monthly Book Club meetings, brownies were on hand. The following is the list of books students read:

  1. When the Emperor was Divine/Otsuka
  2. Miracle at St. Anna/McBride
  3. The Lazarus Project/Hemon
  4. Orphan Train/Klein
  5. Little Women/Alcott
  6. House on Mango Street/Cisneros
  7. Farewell to Manzanar/Houston (non-fiction)
  8. Songs of Willow Frost/Ford
  9. There Eyes Were Watching God/Hurston
  10. Angle of Repose/Stegner
  11. Dances With Wolves/Blake
  12. Kindred/Butler
  13. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn/Twain
  14. Carter Beats the Devil/Gould
  15. As I Lay Dying/Faulkner
  16. The Revenant/Punke
  17. East of Eden/Steinbeck
  18. Ragged Dick/Alger
  19. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn/Smith
  20. Maggie, a Girl of the Streets/Crane
  21. Daughter of Fortune/Allende
  22. Cannery Row/Steinbeck