Week in Review: Scientists in the Field Showcase

On Wednesday, the sixth graders wrapped up their interdisciplinary research Scientists in the Field project with a terrific showcase of their work! Students presented to an audience of their parents, teachers, and peers and shared what they learned about their scientists’ specialty. Students also created audio/visual projects like virtual reality experiences, virtual backpacks, and documentaries. Audience members were given three (fake) $500 checks to donate to groups they thought deserved funding.

Week in Review: NHD Takeover

Happy December! The library has been in full National History Day research mode this week with both seventh and eighth-grade students in to work on their projects. Students spent the week learning how to navigate databases and look for information on their topics in library books. This year’s NHD theme is Debate & Diplomacy and some of their topics include gentrification, the Bubonic Plague, and disability rights. Thursday and Friday were spent as a “help day” for seventh-grade. Students were able to work on their projects and get assistance from Mrs. Kahn or Ms. Melinson.

Also happening in the library this week was the NAIS Student Diversity Leadership Conference. Usually held in person, this conference went virtual due to COVID. Six high school students were able to attend this important conference virtually. The library’s quiet room turned into a communal conference space. To make the event feel more special, students received SDLC swag bags and lunch.

Week in Review: the One with the Research, pt. 2

Students in sixth, seventh, and 10th grades were in the library this week working on research for their various projects.

Sixth-grade students learned about curating their resources for their Scientists in the Field project. Seventh graders evaluated the authority of websites that might be useful for their National History Day projects. Tenth-grade students took a deep dive into databases and how to find relevant information for their Sophomore Projects.

The outside of the library got a little more informative this week when senior Masai decorated the window display with images and information honoring Native American Heritage Month.

Ms. Melinson helped host the first meeting of the Grands & Friends book club. Check out the selection of books she shared with the group.

Last Week, This Week: 6th Grade Oriention

The sixth grades were in the library most of last week for library orientation. Students learned about the library and the services and resources it offers. They worked at different stations to complete a Dewey Decimal scavenger hunt, learned about databases, and learned how to evaluate websites. Each student was assigned a specialty (authority, content, bias, or design) and then had to evaluate three websites in regards to that specific criteria. After, each specialist presented their findings to their groups.

Week in Review: The One with the Post-Its

The 9th and 10th graders were in this week working on various aspects of their projects. Ninth grade students got a refresher course on how to use NoodleTools, a citation management tool, for their National History Day projects. They also learned how to navigate our databases for relevant information and how to find scholarly sources. The 10th graders spent their library time taking a deep dive into local sources.

The library held its first book club of the school year. Students talked about what they read over the summer. Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir was a popular book between Adam and Saheb, with both of them describing it as more dense than The Martian, but a great plot. We also had a lively discussion on movie adaptations of books and which are better (the books are better).

Friday saw the beginning of Teentober and a writing contest to celebrate teen voices. The library’s helpers wrote out interesting prompts on Post-it notes and put them on the front window for students to draw inspiration from.


Thank you to our two secret admirers for the lovely flowers!

Week in Review: The One with the Research

The library was full of 7th and 10th grade students this week. The 7th graders began by searching the Credo database and brainstorming topic ideas for National History Day. This year’s theme is Debate & Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences and students are sure to come up with fascinating topics. Later in the week, the 7th graders were back to learn how to find and annotate a database article (annotating is a way to take more interactive notes) then they added their sources to NoodleTools (a research management platform that also helps them generate a bibliography). Meanwhile, the 10th graders were in this week to research local sources for their Sophomore Project topics.

Week in Review: The One with the Walk

Happy end of the first full week of the school year!

The 10th graders were treated to a visit from Sacramento Room librarian, James Scott, this week. Scott spoke to students about the Sacramento room and the historical treasures it houses. He also talked about the kinds of resources the public library has available to help facilitate research for their Sophomore Projects and even did a virtual walk-through of newspaper archives on some of the topics shared.

The library also acted as host this week for the 9th and 10 grade initial discussions on the all high school read, Interior Chinatown. Mr. Hinojosa gave an overview of some of the themes and stereotypes found in the book in preparation for break-out groups later this month that will explore these topics more in depth.

Wednesday also saw the beginning of Hispanic/LatinX Heritage Month. Check out our Instagram post featuring some of our new library helpers holding some great Hispanic/LatinX literature. Be sure to follow us @matthewslibraryscds for more great recommendations!

On Thursday the 10th graders took to the back field to walk and discuss their paper topic with a partner. Each pair shared their topic as they walked around the track, sometimes more than twice, and then debriefed in the garden.

Week in Review: The One With the Wildlife Rescue

Happy second week of school! We hope you’re getting back into the groove of things after a long holiday weekend. The library is back to bustling business as usual. The sophomores took over the library this week, visiting with both their English and History classes. Students worked on focusing their research topics and learning how to paraphrase. They learned how to make outlines and navigated Noodletools, a research management platform. On Thursday, both English and History classes were in the library at the same time working on their zombie issues assignment, which helped students navigate the different features in Noodletools they’ll be using with their Sophomore Project.

The library had a special visitor on Thursday – a dragonfly! They flew into the library office and needed several helping hands to make it back outside. Wildlife rescuers Jacob and Rod helped gently catch the dragon fly with an empty garbage bin and a blanket after which Ms. Melinson set on a table outside. The dragonfly flew away after several minutes, hopefully not into anymore buildings.

Week in Review: Welcome back!

We’re back! Back in school, back in person, and back to our weekly review of what happens in (and, this year especially, around) the Matthews Library.

Mrs. Frandrup’s Book Elective stopped by on the first day of school to check out some new reading material. The library is positively bursting with new books so they had much to choose from.

The 10th graders were in the library on Thursday to learn about their big research unit, the Sophomore Project. Ms. Melinson introduced them to what they would be doing and then had them brainstorm ideas by searching through local Sacramento magazines and websites.

Ms. Melinson also met with her advisory for the first time and ate tasty, fancy snacks.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Strong was out some of the week practicing one of our most important civic responsibilities – jury duty. While she can’t talk about the experience yet, she can share some photos from the beautiful Robert T. Matsui United States Courthouse.