Friday, March 24, 2017

Genrefying: What do you think?

Once a year all the school library media specialists get together to discuss the latest and greatest in library and technology innovations. This gathering is held annually by the Wisconsin Educational Media & Technology Association (WEMTA), and I have attended a dozen times now. Every year I come back with great new things to try in my library / classroom and to tell my fellow teachers about.

One session I went to at this year's conference (and I heard mentioned at the past few conferences) was the idea of reorganizing the library fiction section by genre instead of having one large fiction section organized by author's last name. Now as an educator, an adult, and a somewhat type A personality, I was leery of doing this because change is hard to adjust to. But, this particular conference session reinforced the point about making it about the students. What would the students find beneficial? What would help them find fiction books that they were interested in? What would make sense to help a student find a read-a-like if the book they want is out?

All of these questions where swirling in my mind as I drove home form the Dells on Tuesday afternoon and this is the decision I made -- I need to ask what my library users want!

Please take THIS SURVEY before May 1st to give feedback on what you think of the idea of genrefying one or all of our school libraries. Thank you in advance for all the great feedback!

If you have any questions about this process, you can contact me via email anytime aolson[at] DFTBA!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Books of the Week, March 20

Elementary - One World, One Day by Barbara Kerley
Photographs and poetic text describe the shared daily activities of people around the world, such as preparing breakfast.
305.234 KER @ the library

Middle School - We Are All Born Free : The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Pictures by Amnesty International
An illustrated introduction to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was established following World War II, including thirty articles that declare the basic rights for all of humanity as compiled by the United Nations.
341.4 WE @ the Library

High School - For the Good of Mankind? : The Shameful History of Human Medical Experimentation by Vicki Oransky Wittenstein
Discusses the history of human experimentation and its impact on medical discoveries.
174.2 WIT @ the Library

Friday, March 17, 2017

Recently arrived at the library!

We had some new books arrive at the SCC libraries recently. Some of them were award winners we didn't already have, some were books to fill curriculum needs, and some were just for fun.

To see some of the new books at each building, watch the videos below. And you can search our catalog to see what each building has available on Destiny.

Have a great day!


Middle School

High School

Friday, March 10, 2017

A Plethora of Things!

So February and the beginning of March have been a whirlwind of activity, and today I realized it's been a month since I wrote something here! So here's an update on some of  the library activity that has been going on:

Elementary Book Fair --- The elementary book fair, which ran Feb 28-March 3, was a huge success. We sold over $8000 worth of books and other items, netting the school over $3000 dollars in funding. Some of this has already been given away through books to students, classrooms, and purchases for the library. Some of the rest will be used to purchase online databases for students to use and some will be saved in order to replace computers in the library in the next 2-3 years.

Career Research --- The eighth grade completed their annual career research recently. I was fortunate enough to be allowed to guide them as the explored a chosen career. We first completed a chart about what they knew and wanted to know about their career, then talked about creating citations for the sources they used, and finally they were able to start researching using either a paper packet or a Google sheet (paper/pencil VS technology!). It went incredibly well with students learning many different skills.

Presentation to the Staff --- I held a presentation for the staff on our February professional development day about different online resources that could be utilized to help make book recommendations to students. There was an overwhelming response and great discussion that happened, and I even had one teacher ask me to do a mini-session with her reading classes! I love being in a district where we can share knowledge and ideas and invite other staff in for collaboration.

Common School Fund & Budget -- Leaving the least exciting to last, I've been working on my library budgets in all three buildings recently, trying to wrap up spending for this year and plan for next year. One of the things that I always need to consider is the amount of funding we will get from Common School Fund. You can find out more about the Common School Fund via my post from last year or by visiting the DPI website. These year the amount of funding was down, with SCC receiving  $49,651 for purchase of library resources and learning materials. This is the only money I receive for such materials, so am very grateful to our founders and our current representatives for safe guarding this important school funding.

That has been a bit of my world the past few weeks! If you'd like to know more about any of these items or anything else in library land, you can contact me anytime via email at aolson[at] Have a wonderful day!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Books of the Week, Mar 6

Elementary Everyone Can Learn to Ride a Bicycle by Chris Raschka
A father teaches his daughter all about bicycle riding, from selecting the right bike to trying again after a fall.
Happy Birthday to Chris Raschka on March 6!
EZ RAS @ the library

Middle School - Trouble Begins at 8 : A Life of Mark Twain in the Wild, Wild West by Sid Fleischman
A narrative account of the childhood and youth of nineteenth-century writer Mark Twain. Includes period engravings, newspaper cartoons, and black-and-white photographs.
Happy Birthday to Sid Fleischman on March 6!
921 TWAIN @ the Library

High School - Wall : Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Peter Sís
Artist Sís Peter describes what it was like growing up in a Communist country and discusses how Western culture influenced his life.
Happy Birthday to Peter Sis on March 11!
921 SIS @ the Library

Monday, February 27, 2017

Books of the Week, Feb 27

Elementary - Who Was Steve Irwin? by Dina Anastasio, illustrated by Jim Eldridge
Describes the life and career of Steve Irwin, famously known as the Crocodile Hunter, from his childhood and early love of animals to his rise in popularity as a film and television star and naturalist.
921 IRW @ the library

Middle School - Tech Titans by Carla Killough McClafferty
Explores the lives and work of six figures who have had an influence on technology, including Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, and Jeff Bezos.
338.7 MCC @ the Library

High School Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures As the World's Most Wanted Hacker by Kevin Mitnick, with William L. Simon
Kevin Mitnick discusses his life as a wanted hacker by the FBI, describing his interest in infiltrating the computers and networks of large corporations, and providing insight into the computer security industry in the twenty-first century.
921 MITNICK @ the Library

Friday, February 10, 2017

And the award goes to....

Throughout library land, people are excited by the announcement of the 2017 award winning books and media. These winners are chosen as the-best-of-the-best of everything that was published the previous year.

You can view the children's and young adult awards by clicking through the slideshow below. Many of these are available in various formats through the SCC library.

We at SCC would like to send our heartfelt congratulations to all the authors, illustrators, and publishers of these amazing books.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Books of the Week, Feb 6

Elementary - Valentine's Day Secret by Carolyn Keene and illustrated by Macky Pamintuan
As the girls make stuffed animals at Farmer Fran's Barnyard Buddies, Nancy gets stuck in the middle of George and Bess's worst fight ever after Bess receives a mean Valentine and thinks George was the sender.
FIC KEE @ the library

Middle School - Ms. Marvel 3: Crushed by G. Willow Wilson; art by Elmo Bondoc and Takeshi Miyazawa
Love is in the air in Jersey City as Valentine's Day arrives! Kamala Khan may not be allowed to go to the school dance, but Ms. Marvel is! Well, sort of--by crashing it in an attempt to capture Asgard's most annoying trickster! Yup, it's a special Valentine's Day story featuring Marvel's favorite charlatan, Loki! And when a mysterious stranger arrives in Jersey City, Ms. Marvel must deal with...a crush! Because this new kid is really, really cute. What are these feelings, Kamala Khan?
GN WIL @ the Library

High School - How They Met, and Other Stories by David Levithan
A collection of eighteen stories describing the surprises, sacrifices, doubts, pain, and joy of falling in love.
SC LEV @ the Library

Friday, February 3, 2017

Winners from 2nd quarter! Chance to win in 3rd!

Half way done with the year and there are some winners to announce! During second quarter, students in grades 5-12 had the opportunity to participate in our One School One Book program. Middle school students could read the book Big Top Burning, a non-fiction book about a circus fire in the 1940s, while the high school students could read the book Food: The New Gold, an exploration of how our food is produced. Students who read the book and wrote a review in our library catalog (Destiny) would be entered in a drawing to win a $50 Visa gift card. Winners for 2nd quarter were:
  • Jacob Monicken-Selb
  • Jenna Wehausen
  • Nicolas Harney
  • Baylee Ann Jewell
  • Reese Heebink
Congratulations to all of you for your dedication to reading!

Third quarter we will continue One School One Book! Middle school students can read The Way and high school students can read Catch & Release. Both books are available as ebooks on the respective schools' Destiny Discover, though there are also paper copies in the library.

Questions about the program or our current books can be sent to me anytime!

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Books of the Week, Jan 31

Elementary - Infamous Ratsos by Kara LaReau, illustrated by Matt Myers
Rat brothers Louie and Ralphie Ratso try to prove they can be as rough and tough as their father in the Big City, but every time they try to show how tough they are, they end up accidentally doing good deeds instead.
A 2017 Geisel Honor book
E FIC LAR @ the library

Middle School - The Way by Joseph Bruchac
 In his dreams, Cody LeBeau is a ninja who stops terrorist attacks on his school. In real life, he says, "There's nothing different or special about me at all." Then one day Cody's mysterious uncle John arrives. Uncle John is a martial-arts fighter, and when he says he will train Cody in "The Way," Cody expects to learn martial arts. Instead Cody discovers that "The Way" is a different set of skills-skills that might just help him stop an attack after all.
The One School One Book title for 3rd quarter
ebook @ the Library

High School - Catch & Release by Blythe Woolston
Eighteen-year-old Polly, the narrator, and Odd, who is a year younger and several degrees more impulsive, are the only survivors of a MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus, also known as flesh-eating bacteria) outbreak in their town that killed its five other victims. They did not survive unscathed. Polly lost an eye, and her face is scarred. Odd lost his foot and is tortured by phantom pain. Polly and Odd had no connection before MRSA, but now that their former plans are obsolete, they have nothing but each other and a shared affection for trout fishing. The rest of their small Montana hometown is decidedly uncomfortable for the two who lived. So when Odd shows up in his grandmother's 1979 Cadillac D'Elegance, promising a day on the river, it's pretty clear that a remarkable journey is in store for the two of them.
The One School One Book title for 3rd quarter
ebook @ the Library