Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Library? What's it good for?

Week 2

Guiding Question for all: "What good is a library anyway?" 
Our youngest students learned words such as: librarian, check-in, return, and borrow. Our older students learned about ways they can find books on their own.

Here's the run-down of what we read together this week.

PreK 3 & 4

It's Library Day, by Janet Morgan Stoek
This is an early childhood book that explains the basics of the library: how to get there, why we go, what we do there, and how much we love it! Simple illustrations and text make this an excellent entry point into a discussion of how the library connects us to the books we love.
I Like Books, by Anthony Browne
This simple book is a terrific way to give children an idea of the variety of books in the library. It's simple and clear. The monkey likes lots of kind of books: "funny books and scary books"..."comic books and coloring books." As he gives examples of the books he likes, we raise our hands to show which are our favorites. Sweet watercolor and pencil illustrations and a crisp clean layout make this a pleasing way to introduce children to the wonderful world of books.


I.Q. Goes to the Library, by Mary Ann Fraser
I.Q. (a mouse) gets to go to the library to choose a book for the first time. He learns all about the wonders of the library (puppets! computers!) and learns how books are organized and how to take care of them. But what he really cares about is finding the funny book the librarian read so he can take it home. We're all cheering when he finally gets the book and takes it home to read "until his eyes water and his tail curls." 
Baby Bear's Books, by Jane Yolen
Baby Bear loves to be read to, anytime, anywhere - he loves books! When he wakes up, he asks his mom to read to him, when it's nap time he wants to hear a story, at dinner time, and bedtime, and all the while he's so excited about that cozy feeling of snuggling up with a book. This sweet story with adorable watercolor illustrations of the bear family and their woodland home is good modeling for our little ones to read, read, read!

Grades 1 and 2 had another guiding question: "Do you think Mrs. Ducharme could be a library dragon?" 
Answer: Yes, she can.... if you RUN in the library! 

Grade 1

The Library Dragon, by Carmen Agra Deedy
Sunrise Elementary School has a dragon for a librarian. Whenever the kids come into the library she breathes fire on them! But when a little near-sighted girl comes in and starts READING out loud, even the dragon lady librarian's heart melts.

This is great as a read-aloud IF you create a super-mean voice for the library dragon.

Wild About Books, by Judy Sierra
In this story, a librarian drives her bookmobile (new concept there!) into a zoo. Imagine the fun that follows when all of the animals become 'wild' about books! This rhyming story is fun to read aloud because there are lots of details to talk about in the drawings and because many different types of books, characters, and titles are mentioned. For example, the otters "can't go to bed without their Harry Potters." Illustrations by Marc Brown add to the silliness.

Grade 2 

The Librarian From the Black Lagoon, by Mike Thaler (with DVD afterwards)
Everyone is deathly afraid of the school librarian - she's so evil, no one wants to go to the library. Creepy, heartless, and ugly as sin, Mrs. Beamster is a character we're not likely to forget. She's so mean, if she hears you whispering in the library you get LAMINATED. The DVD is even better, so we watch it after getting the gist of the story and it really comes alive for students.

Grade 3: A Peachy Project! 

Grade threes made "peach-grams" in preparation for a world-wide celebration of the publication of James and the Giant Peach, by Roald Dahl. 

We will send our peaches to third graders at the Van Meter School in Iowa. The students there have already sent theirs to us, and they should arrive soon! We hope our peaches will travel to five different schools in the US!

We will track our peaches, share photos, and "meet" our peachy friends via a shared blog created by the lead librarian of the project, Shannon Miller. 

While students cut and pasted their peach-grams, I read "Hairy Faces" from The Twits, by Dahl. Students listened for details that helped them visualize the gross and disgusting scene. Students are working on the reading strategy of visualization in their classrooms, reading Roald Dahl books with their teachers, and writing about Dahl.

Next week, students will practice reading their own "revolting" passages from various Dahl stories. PDF files of the passages are found on my wiki under "Authors."

Grade 4
Library Boot Camp! 
Three sessions to cover the basics of finding books. 
(That's 120 minutes total, soldier. Yes Ma'am!)

Session 1: Finding fiction
We used a Powerpoint presentation with a "quiz" to  identify the three types of fiction call numbers in our library. 
E = Everybody picture books
I = I-Can-Read beginning chapter books
jF/F = Junior Fiction chapter books.

Students practiced alphabetizing to the third letter, found books matching the three types of call numbers, and mastered identifying the three types of fiction books and their locations in our library. 

Session 2: Destiny Quest basics. 
We reviewed some of the basic features of Destiny Quest: Resource Lists, helpful narrowing tools, the purpose of Title Peek, the "you might also like" feature, and "my list". Students applied why they had learned by using the catalog to answer several questions on this google form.

Session 3: Dewey!
We watched "Dewey Rap" to refresh our memory about the Dewey system. Then completed activities at two stations. At one, students practiced putting Dewey books in order using the online game Order in the Library. At the other, students practiced by using stacks of our own library books. Once they thought they were correct, they found the post-it notes in the back to check their answer.

Grade 5 will have their library boot camp next week. This week they used the library to browse for books and have reading workshop time with their teacher.

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