Library Links

"Content that might be of interest to Teacher-Librarians..."


What is project based learning?

The Value of Project-based learning

Intro article

Intro Video

"Project learning, also known as project-based learning, is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students explore real-world problems and challenges, simultaneously developing cross-curriculum skills while working in small collaborative groups."
project-based learning,

How to stimulate a Spirit of Science Inquiry.

The 5 Features of Science Inquiry: What Questions Do You Have?

"Learning to ask good questions is challenging and needs continual practice. Students should be encouraged to ask "big questions" on a regular basis. In addition, students need to be able to recognize which questions are scientific and which are not. Can the question be answered using evidence from the natural world? Is the question something that we can research using the web or other resources? Can the question be explored using materials that we have access too?"

The author offers a number of strategies Science teachers can use with their students.
science, strategies,

Five Mini Pop Culture Lessons for Elementary Kids.

Five Ideas for Using Pop Culture to Inspire Elementary Students

"I'm not sure if we can successfully connect with our students without dabbling in their after school activities. [...]  But you absolutely have to acknowledge the fact that your students value this, love it even. It gets them up in the morning, pulls them through the day. It's their life. And if you don’t care about it, they know. And it definitely influences the culture of the classroom."

Pop culture,

Sketching as a "pre-thinking" activity.

Have Students Sketch to Kill the Prewriting Jitters

"After overcoming the dreaded blank-page-syndrome, the most important thing about using drawing as a prewriting activity is the conversation that happens around it. Some questions that I commonly ask the students I work with about their sketches are:

•       Why did you decide to draw it this way?
•       What's happening here?
•       Why is this here? (in regards to spacial organization)
•       Why did you include this detail/item?
•       How are these specific items related?
•       What did you purposefully leave out of your drawing?"

sketching, drawing, writing,

Edmodo - Easy Collaboration, with password protection

Edmodo—The Educational Social Network!
article by Christopher Bell January 19, 2011
"This month we are are looking at Edmodo . A social learning network, Edmodo falls into the virtual learning environment (VLE) category of websites. At the most basic level, it is a project management tool that allows for greater collaboration between teachers and students.

You can create folders, load documents, PDFs, images and web links into the library to use later or to attach to notes for viewers."
Edmodo, VLE,

Literacy Short Takes - Graphic Novels

In this third and final installation of "Literacy Short Takes," in School LIbrary Journal, graphic novel aficionado Martha Cornog shares a vast sea of online resources, including fun sites and more serious discussion lists.  ( Literacy Short Takes)

If you use Graphic Novels or want to teach using this medium, the links included in Martha's three articles are a real find.
Graphic Novels,


Hunger Games - Reading guide and more

Hunger Games Resources from Scholastic

Mediaconverter - when the format needs to be changed pronto

Media Converter is a fast free conversion utility that works in your browser window. While you can create an account, it will also work on-the-spot without needing any kind os sing in or email account. Simply upload the file, or give a URL, specify the output format and after a few minutes of chugging away, you get a link for your new file. (The free version has limits: You can only convert 5 files per day. Free users cannot convert files larger than 100MB.)

converting, MediaConverter,

Top 10 Things Baby Teachers Should Know About School Libraries

Top 10 Things Baby Teachers Should Know About School Libraries. 
by, Doug Johnson
Persistent link to the EBSCO article

Great info to share with new or newish staff members. You could give them a copy of the article, or use it as "cheat notes" for a staff meeting presentation at the beginning of the year.

Summary: "Elaborates factors that help to form a partnership between librarians and school teachers. Significance of considering the library an intellectual gymnasium; Aid provided by school librarians in planning projects; Importance of printed information resources in comparison with Internet."

First few paragraphs:
"Welcome to school. It's ever so nice to see your fresh, smiling face! I hope some of your eagerness and enthusiasm rub off on the rest of us, who've been here awhile. (A couple of us still yearn for the days of the one-room school.)

I'm the school media specialist. Or librarian, if you prefer. I answer to both. I recognize that your teacher preparation may not have given you much information about, or experience with, working with me or effectively using a library's resources. There's also a pretty good chance that the school library you used during your own school days was different from the program here.

To help us begin with a positive spin, here are a few things I'd like you to know about the library, our program, and me that can help us form a great partnership:..."

More Public Domain "Full-Text" eBooks

Search the HathiTrust Database of eBooks
Includes titles from Google's book digitization program. Books that are available to all are listed as "Full View". If you search for a topic or book, you have the option of refining your search with "Full-Text" on the results bar on the left of the page. There are a number of eBooks available in this way. (If you find any gems, let the rest of us know!)

For example:
Children's Shakespeare

Voyages of Dr Doolittle

The tailor of Gloucester, by Beatrix Potter

Japanese fairy tales, by Lafcadio Hearn and others.


Interesting trivia about Internet use and content for 2010

"Internet 2010 in Numbers"

Find out the number of users of various service, of email addresses sent, Facebook members, Twitter followers, etc. etc. An interesting snapshot of the online world.

Data sources and notes: Spam percentage from MessageLabs (PDF). Email user numbers and counts from Radicati Group (the number of sent emails was their prediction for 2010, so it’s very much an estimate). Website numbers from Netcraft. Domain name stats from Verisign and Internet user numbers and distribution from Internet World Stats. Facebook stats from Facebook and Business Insider. Twitter stats from Twitter (and here), TwitterCounter and TechCrunch. Web browser stats from StatCounter. YouTube video numbers from Google. Facebook video numbers from GigaOM. US online video stats from Comscore and the Pew Research Center. Flickr image numbers from Flickr. Facebook image numbers from this blog.

2011 Notable Children's Books - ALA

Looking for new recommended titles for your collection?

ALSC announces 2011 Notable Children's Books

Annotated Version


Mathemusician" videos help teens see math as art

Some interesting "Stream of consciousness" videos related to Math concepts:

"I like most creative activities that involve making a lot of noise, mess, or both. Aside from composing, I love improvising on various instruments, drawing, sculpting, and other methods of making things. My main hobby is mathematics, with special interests in symmetry, polyhedra, and surreal complexity. This usually manifests as collaborative research in computational geometry and other areas of theoretical computer science, or as mathematical art."

Looking for More BookTalk websites?

Try some of the following suggestions:

Bookwink Video Booktalks

Digital Booktalks (Created to encourage struggling readers)

Student-created booktalks

Booktrailer Repository
This site has booktrailers organized by grade level.
They are more like movie trailers and combine images, music and a voice over to "sell the book." You can actually download the trailers and have them play in a loop on a local machine. (


"A Book and a Hug", a great book recommendation site

If you haven't seen it already, check out "A Book and a Hug", a great book recommendation site by Barb Langridge (her passion is getting kids excited about reading. She does the children's book recommendations for WBALTVChannel 11 in Baltimore and has her own cable television show, Books Alive - hint: use Firefox to view clips - nice interview with Mem Fox.) Books have concise reviews, extensive tags and recommended reading levels.

abookandahug, books, clips,

Teen Learning 2.0 - Online workshop for teens

Teen Learning 2.0 from the California School Library Association

Teens can follow the series of lessons proposed on this site to learn more about some of the powerful Web 2.0 tools they have at their disposal. (Teachers could also use the lessons as the basis for their own learning. There is a downloadable teacher's guide on the site.)
The CSLA site is at

TeenLearning 2.0,


School Library magazines via EBSCO

Here is a list of professional magazines for teacher-librarians. (ID and password needed for access from home.)

"Book Links"
A magazine designed for teachers, librarians, booksellers, parents and other interested adults in connecting children with books. Focuses on articles that target those people that educate children from preschool through eighth grade.

Provides a guide to current print and nonprint materials worthy of consideration for purchase by small and medium-sized public libraries and school library media centers.

"Library Media Connection"
Publishes articles dealing with the operration of secondary school libraries and reviews of books & other media. A journal for junior and senior high school librarians.

"Library Talk" (Elementary focus)
Articles, review articles and commentary on libraries, librarians, technology and automation for elementary school librarians.

"School Library Journal"
The most complete provider of news, information and reviews for librarians and media specialists who serve children and young adults in school and public libraries.

"School Libraries in Canada"
Provides updates in the field of school librarianship & acts as the offical publication of the Canadian School Library Association.

EBSCO, magazines, libraries,

"Weekly Reader" Magazines for Teens - via EBSCO

Magazines from "Weekly Reader" aimed at Middle and High School students. These are all viewable for free via EBSCO. (School ID and password needed for home access: see your TL for details.)

"Current Events"
Presents articles on current events covering politics, the environment, international relations & more. Written exclusively for students in grades 6-10.

"Read" (poetry, short stories, analysis, etc)
Literacy & Literacy Education; Literature & Writing (General); Secondary Education; Teen Interest. Organized into 2 sections: Literature and writing. "Read" explores literary elements, offers grammar and writing tips and features author interviews. (List of themes covered in 2010-11.)

"Current Science"
Teen Interest; Science (General) Presents articles covering all topics related to science for children at the middle-school level. (Gr 7-9)

EBSCO, magazines,

Weekly Reader Magazine - via EBSCO

Weekly Reader materials incorporate a set of inferential thinking skills known as the Concepts of Comprehension©. This framework of 21 Concepts was developed by the Urban Education Exchange (UEE) as a means of helping educators teach reading-comprehension skills-explicitly, simply, and clearly. Weekly Reader is available for free online via EBSCO. Supplemental materials are available to classes that subscribe to the print version.

Weekly Reader - Pre K
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader - Edition K
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader - Edition 2
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader News - Edition 3
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader News - Edition 4
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader News - Senior (Gr 5/6)
PDF Full Text

Weekly Reader, EBSCO,

Curriculum Services Canada - Archived Webcasts for ProD

Literacy and Numeracy Webcasts/Webinars

"Curriculum Services Canada (CSC) is the Pan-Canadian standards agency for quality assurance in learning products and programs. We are an incorporated, not-for-profit organization that provides services including the development, implementation, evaluation, and accreditation of teaching and learning resources, and the delivery of professional learning opportunities online, using multimedia and social networking."

October 21, 2010
Mature readers, writers, and speakers need to possess a basic knowledge of "how words work" and a set of strategies for approaching new words encountered throughout the day. Word knowledge has an impact on reading comprehension, spelling, and vocabulary. These skills, in turn, influence student success in all subject areas. This webcast explores effective instruction in word study. Students are encouraged to reflect on their learning, to collaborate with one another, and to use their knowledge of words in a variety of media and text forms. The students you will see in this webcast are learning to take a critical stance and developing the dispositions and skills they will need in order to be successful in the fast-paced, ever-changing, information-laden society in which they will find themselves.

Courtesy Policy for eDevices - High School

Thought you might find this interesting...

Doing the Right Thing with Technology
"...Our colleagues were frustrated with the amount of time they spent asking students to put cell phones and MP3 players away. The administrators were frustrated at the increased time they had to spend disciplining repeat offenders. And some parents weren’t happy when their children had these expensive devices taken away from them in school. We realized that prohibition alone wasn’t working and that we weren’t teaching students appropriate uses of technology. We also realized that we were missing out on an excellent opportunity to integrate technology into our school curriculum..."
Full article here:

"A Québec, c'est tout un Carnaval"

Some Carnaval Sites to explore

Games, Activities, Kits

Webquest idea

NFB clip (12mins)

Quebec Winter Carnival - photos

Carnaval, Quebec,