Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Reading Counts Store

My absolute favorite week of the quarter, especially the first quarter. I only have my lower level prizes out because MOST kids don't have more than 25 points at this point. But, I do have one that is at almost 400 and another that has made it over 100. I love the first store because those kids that have not yet been motivated to take RC tests now have a little push when they see their friends getting prizes.
I have bins with each points levels (5, 10, 15, 25, 50, 100, and as the year gets on I have 200, 300, 400, and 500 too). The kids get to spend their points just like at a real store. I mark the points as used in SAM and that is that. I make the lowest point value 5 because I want them to have put a little itty bit of effort in before getting a prize. They like this because they get to choose the prizes the like instead of having one handed to them.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Book 12 of 15

As I was reading this book I could put in the voice of most 5th grade girls I know. There is nothing Brianna Justice wants to do more than follow in her hero's footsteps. Miss Delicious attended the same elementary school as Brianna and attributes it to her success owning her own cupcake business and having a TV show. Brianna is now running to be the 5th grade class president and has her plans thwarted when a new girl, Jasmine Moon, enters the race. Will she push the limits to win the election? Will she be able to stay herself in order to win?

Book 11 of 15

This book takes place during the Vietnam War and Space Race. It is about a little girl, Tamara, who is mostly misunderstood by the adults in her neighborhood. Muscle Man McGinty has moved into her best friends house and she cannot forgive him for it. But, does Muscle Man have reasons for being the way he is? Will Tamara bother to take the time to find out?

Book 10 of 15

This book may just have my vote. Isabelle lives in a town that has not seen sunshine since the day she was dropped on a doorstep in Runny Cove (formerly known as Sunny Cove). All the citizens of Runny Cove are dependant on Mr. Supreme's umbrella factory to live and they are working in horrible conditions.
One day she has a chance to leave Runny Cove and meet the family that she has been yearning for for 10 years. Her plan is to meet them and have them help her find a way to save her friends. Will it work? Will her family go for it? Read on to find out :)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

This Week in Media

Pre-K and Kindergarten

The little ones will be learning about the parts of a book and the jobs of people who create them. We will be reading Ook the Book and using it to model the various parts of a book (cover, spine, pages, title, and call number). The students will then go to tables with various books on them and work together (using my newly learned Kagan structures, YAY) to point out the parts of a book to one another.
Ask your Pre-K or Kindergartner to name the parts of a book for you!!!

First Grade
First graders will be learning the same concept, but in a different way. They are going to play a game to reinforce these concepts (that they learned last year). Again, using a Kagan structure, the students are each going to have a card with a question about the parts of a book, author, illustrator, fiction, or nonfiction. They will then be doing "Quiz, Quiz, Trade" to get as much reinforcement as they need.
When first graders get home they should be able to tell you the parts of a book, what the author and illustrator do, and the difference between fiction and nonfiction books!

Second, Third, and Fourth Grades
I will be reading The Shelf Elf to the second, third, and fourth graders. I have read this book to them every year, but it reinforces the need to keep our library neat and in order. When I am done reading the book, instead of me asking the students questions, they will be asking each other, using the "Quiz, Quiz, Trade" method. When they get done with this lesson they should have a better understanding of where books belong in the library and what the shelves should look like.

Fifth Grade
The fifth graders, for the next couple weeks, are going to be working on becoming more responsible Internet users. They will be completing a webquest ( in groups of 2 or 3. At the end of the webquest they will be giving me a list of rules to use to determine whether or not a website is reliable for accurate information.

Have a great week!!!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Book 9 of 15... As I sit at soccer practice

I finished Attack of the Fluffy Bunnies while sitting and watching a soccer practice. It was an interesting story about a brother and sister (twins) who were dropped off at camp by their parents. As camp started odd things started to happen that they were blamed for. So, in their search for the truth they discovered an alien species of Fluffy Bunnies who eat sweets and hypnotize people to take over their bodies.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Book 8 of 15

Whew!! That book took me a while to get through, the beginning of the year overcame me. This book was slow to start and seemed like all the action was at the end. This book is about a boy named Scrub, who lives in Florida. But, because his parents have business trips all summer, he is sent to Washington to stay with his grandmother for the summer. His grandmother is the "weirdo" of town and runs the Intergalactic Bed and Breakfast, which is exactly what it sounds like, a vacation spot on a primitive planet for aliens. Scrub goes through a lot of life changes while at his grandmothers, where he doesn't have any cell service or internet access... what is a boy to do?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

A Whole New World

In so many ways this week is going to start a new world in the Pride Media Center. First, the Book Fair is over so we are back to our regularly scheduled lessons. Kindergarten and First Grade get to start checking out books this week (YAY!!!), and Second through Fifth Grades are going to start library centers this week. Here are what we are going to be focusing on in each grade level:

Kindergarten/ 1st Grade
We are going to go over check out procedures (using a shelf marker, bringing the book to the circulation desk, going back to their assigned area). With first grade we are going to go over how to find a just right book. These grade levels will be checking out from a limited selection of books on their grade level to help with them choosing just right books.

2nd Grade
Second graders are going to be learning about the author and illustrator of a book and their job roles. Their centers will include: check out, Reading Counts, library centers (A Helping Hand, Find the Illustrator, The Spine of a Book).

3rd/ 4th Grade
This week third and fourth graders will be learning how to put books in shelf order. I will do a mini lesson on call numbers and shelf order. Their centers will include: check out, Reading Counts, library centers (putting fiction, easy, and non-fiction books in shelf order)

5th Grade
Fifth graders are going to be reviewing dictionary skills this week. Their centers will include: check out, Reading Counts, and library centers (guide words, parts of speech, syllagraph, and multiple meanings).

Monday, September 3, 2012

Do You Symbaloo?

Symbaloo is a visual bookmarking site that has quite a few educational implications. I have created a symbaloo for some Common Core resources for the teachers at my school:

I also created a page for each grade level so I have easy access to the websites I need for lessons as well as allowing the kids access so they know what websites that are available for them to go on.

Seeing how Florida was not the first state to adopt the CCSS there are alot of resources out there from other states. My favorite are the links of books to allign with each standard. Bloggers from other states have been busy creating materials for all subjects. By searching Pinterest and google I have found tons of free resources and have linked them all to my symbaloo.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The First Week

The first week back to school was full of rules and procedures, and rules and procedures, and even more rules and procedures. This is my 3rd year in the Media Center and I love knowing most of the kids coming in. I loved meeting new faces coming into our school as well. The kids are very eager to check out books and start Reading Counts (both are coming soon).

I gave all classes a tour of the new and improved media center and the general consensus was that the media center is MUCH better in the new arrangement.

This week we will be reviewing the rules and procedures, going thoroughly over checkout procedures so the students can start checking out next week. I can't wait to start talking with them about the books they get, finding out their new interests, and watching the Reading Counts points soar!!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Book 7 of 15

This book was my favorite Sunshine Reader so far!!! I read the whole thing in one day, I could NOT put it down!!!! Celie is the youngest princess in a castle that moves on it's own will. When Celie's parents, the king and queen, are thought dead and sorrounding kingdoms are trying to take over the castle, it protects the prince and princesses and helps them hold on to what is rightfully theirs.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Book 6 of 15

This was an interesting book to read as a teacher. Edgar is that student that you absolutely love, but can very easily drive you crazy :) At the beginning of the story the class goldfish, Slurpy, is stolen from the classroom. The theif leaves a poem on the board and Edgar is determined to solve it. The problem is one of his classmates, Patrick, is also on the case. Follow Edgar in his determination to find out what happened to Slurpy while he finds out other secrets about some of his classmates and teachers.

RL: 4.7
Lesson: TBA

Friday, August 10, 2012

Book 5 of 15

This book was a really fast read, another great one for the third graders!!! J.J. is a retired search and rescue dog living out his retirement years on a farm, when mama chicken, who he so lovingly calls Moosh, comes to him with a problem. Two of her four chicks are missing and she is hoping J.J. can find them.
Reading Level: 3.8
Lessons: TBA

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Book 4 of 15

I was surprised by how quickly I was sucked into this book. Normally books with personified animals don't capture my attention, but this one did from the first page. Aldwyn, the cat, captured my heart from the very beginning. He is a common alley cat just trying to survive, when he finds him self hiding in a store of familiars to escape Grimsdale, the city's bounty hunter. While hiding he is chosen as a young wizard's familiar and finds himself on an amazing adventure with two new friends to save the loyal he became instantly attached to.

Grade Level: 5.0
Lesson: Themes- friendship, loyalty, honesty
RC points: TBA

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Ed Tech Tuesday- VOKI

See the new lady over there----------->
She is a Voki, and it is a pretty cool site. I read about this here at technology tailgate. You can choose from a pretty large selection of characters. Your Voki can be posted to most social media sites or blogs. You can also download and save it to your computer. Use it for a morning introduction or something to capture students' attention. Students can also create a Voki as a book report, biography presentation, or a research report. Try it out at

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Pinterest Prizes

I thought I would make turning in those pesky forms at the beginning of the year a little more fun this time :) So I have been scouring the pinterest pages of some of my fellow teachers to see what would make a good prize for having all of their media release and computer usage forms turned in. This was one of the most pinned items. I put my own twist on it and did it on a canvas instead of a block of wood (mostly because that is what I had on hand). So, teachers of Pride, look forward to having your own treasure box of sorts this year!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Summer Throwdown Part 2

As I was browsing through another Library Blog tonight I found this challenge between teachers and librarians to see who can read more books. The challenge runs from July 22- August 18. I have 12 more Sunshine Readers to get through plus some adult books I want to read. So, here I go joining

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Book 3- The Books of Elsewhere, the Shadows

I finished my 3rd Sunshine Reader! The Books of Elsewhere, the Shadows is a series I may have to read the rest of. Olive is an 11 year old girl who just moved into an old mansion whose previous owner died in at 104. Her parents are flighty mathematicians who don't pay much attention to the goings on in the house. While exploring Olive discovers a pair of spectacles that allow here to go into the paintings in the house where she finds all kinds of adventures!
Reading Level: 4
Lessons: TBA


Computer are all put in place (not by me, our AWESOME custodial staff did it)!
Most of the non-fiction books have been reshelved, up through the 600s, YAY!
Tables are (mostly) cleared off and in place. Look how much room there is!
But, there is definitely still a lot to do...

Lots of Work to Do

I am heading into the media center today (like I have each Wednesday since returning from vacation). To get it put back together after a reorginization of shelves. I am absolutely loving how it is arranged now!!!

The computers are now where I can see them from the circulation desk.

All the little shelves are now in the middle of the media center (where the computers used to be). The front of the media center is now all open, so we don't have to squeeze together like a can of sardines in faculty meetings.

Books I need to reshelf (so worth it)


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Ed Tech Tuesday

I have two very cool websites to share today!
Are you looking for a website to help with Common Core standards in math? Try The best part? It is FREE! Right now, they only have it available for Grades 1, 2, and 3. But, they say that K, 4, and 5 are coming soon. Seriously cool! The students earn coins and can spend them on rewards.

The second is something simple,, is an internet tea timer. The screen gets gradually darker as the time is running out (like a cup of tea).

Monday, July 30, 2012

Our top 10 for 2011-2012

I got a great idea from The Library Patch Blog to post the 10 ten books that were checked out for the school year. It was pretty easy to get this information by running a report. The results don't really surprise me because these books were asked for OVER and OVER. The Bone books were never, ever in the library and I have 20 of them! So, here is our list (and YAY a Sunshine Reader is on there)!

QR Codes for Meet the Teacher

QR codes are these funny looking squares you see everywhere:
This is my QR code. Go ahead, take out your phone, scan it. It gives my Name, (school) phone number, (school) address, (school) email, and this wonderful blog address. All of this information (except the blog) is public information they can look up on the district website if needed, but this is a nice way for parents to have all your information so they can contact you right from the smartphone if needed.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Florida Reading Association Book Awards

This one is for my Pre-K through 2nd grade teachers!!!!

I am excited about this with program with the little ones this year. I have been doing the Sunshine Reader program with 3rd through 5th graders, offering an ice cream party to those that read at least 3 books.

With these books I will be reading the books to the Pre-Kindergarten through 2nd graders. They will then have a voting ceremony at the end of the year with a special treat.

Here is an overview of each book:
This is a cute twist on the classic story about a Gingerbread Man who is trying to find the class who made him.
Visit the author and illustrator sites here:

This story follows the theme "the grass is always greener." This could be taught with a unit on feelings as the fish's expressions throughout the book show them clearly.
Visit the author and illustrator sites here:

Another true story about a penguin that overcomes adversary with the help of his human keepers.
Visit the author and illustrator sites here:

"When Dirk Yeller scours the town for something to stop his itchin’ and twitchin’ and jumpin’ and rattlin’, no one seems able to help. But Sam, who’s been following Dirk all day—and who can sometimes be a little fidgety, too—knows the perfect solution..."
Visit the author and illustrator sites here:

My son, a pronounced dinosaur lover, adores this book. It is a story about one of the animals that has survived through the age of the dinosaurs into modern times. The journey of a sea turtle is a magical one told throught the eyes of a turtle from a different era.

The story of one family and what the do when the lights go out. A great story about family and community.
Book Trailer Video
Visit the author/illustrator site here:

A perfect story for the age group it is intended for. This would be a good book to partner with Parts by Tedd Arnold.
Visit the author site here:

A touching story about a cat and a dog that relied on each other to survive Hurricane Katrina. See the book trailer here. This is a good book to pair with a unit on severe weather or friendship.Visit the websites for the authors and illustrator: