Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Walla Walla Webcast With Jon Scieszka

The super cool author of some of my most favourite books The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stoopid Tales & The True Story of the Three Little pigs will be holding a live webcast for kids in March! It's FREE to sign up (and yes, to my MHMS Kids, we're so there!) and uber cool author of Trackers & friend of the MHMS Media Center - (see his signed poster below!) Patrick Carman will be the host!
From the website:

"Walla Walla Kids Read will webcast JON SCIESZKA, one of America’s most beloved children’s authors. This FREE event is hosted by Patrick Carman. Consult the events page for exact times, then sign up below if you would like to broadcast the author appearance in your classroom or library. All presentations last approximately 45 minutes and are presented on the web as they happen"

Visit the site for FREE Downloads:Learn more & Sign up your school today!

Which is your favourite Jon Scieszka book?

Walla Walla Webcast With Jon Scieszka

tags: Jon Scieszka, Patrick Carman, walla walla kids read, webcast

graphics & photos: © 2010 Walla Walla Kids Read

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Cool QR Codes in the Classroom & Library

In our hallway - promoting our Google Form Book Reviews!
QR Codes are popping up everywhere! On the back of my Sephora catalog, windows of shops, and in my library! They're already big in Japan - and now in New York & LA.

On our Recent Arrival Display - Promoting this Blog!

They look cool, matrixy, and very graphic...
but what heck ARE they?

A Quick Response (QR) code is a two-dimensional or 2D bar code which can be interpreted by any mobile phone with camera capabilities. Unlike traditional barcodes, which feature a series of straight lines these barcodes QR Codes are laid out in a matrix and can hold much more information.
Through “scanning” the code by way of photographing it, and installing a a FREE APP or simple piece of software to your smartphone, anyone can access the information behind the QR which might contain images, easily launched website links, and text.

Simply use your smartphone's camera to scan a QR code (via a reader app, such as Barcode Scanner or QuickMark), and you'll instantly be rewarded with whatever content has been embedded in the code, whether it's a URL that you can auto launch to the site, a friend's contact information, or a text message.

QR Codes in the Classroom - and the Library! From a recent article I contributed to at the Innovative Educator blog - txtN N d library: Ideas for Librarians Who Want to Embrace the Power of Cell Phones (btw, feels weird to post this in the third person and do I use quotes if I wrote it?!)

"QR codes can also be used to conduct a treasure hunt of information in the school library. Middle school teacher librarian Gwyneth Jones, aka the
Daring Librarian, uses QR codes to engage students in what she calls “digital discoveries.” Asking the students to bring their cell phones to the library, in small groups or pairs, the kids hunt for sneaky QR codes posted around the library (programed with a free QR code generator) to discover clues that can be scanned that lead to other clues - some asking questions, some that lead students to wiki or webpages with further information, some that require the students to perform a task to discover the final clue and the “treasure” which is a special key code to be submitted to a Google form. Once on the Google form wikipage students input the “key” to a drawing for a chance to win an iTunes gift card or a bundle of free books. Another use is posting QR codes next to book displays & pubic access catalog computers that lead students to wikipages where they can write and read student book reviews.

Because students work in groups or pairs, only about a third of the class needs Smartphones and because she’s done a student survey in advance she knows how much technology her students have. If necessary, being ever cognizant of the digital divide, Jones has purchased a couple iPod touch Generation 4 mobile devices that students may use in the library or check out to use at home with the preloaded Kindle app and several books, music, & library pics." - Read the rest of the article by Tamara Cox and check out her AWEsome Eliterate Librarian blog

Buying information for the iPod Touch 4th Generation
Now with FaceTime, Retina display, HD video recording, and Game Center.

Shopping ALERT! Amazon price beats Apple teacher discount!

An 8G Apple iPod Touch 4th Gen is on sale on Amazon for $215 last week... and the Apple Educator price was.....wait for it....$229! What the what!? So like I mention on my
check Amazon's price before you decide to buy - and remember the low price today could raise higher tomorrow - and vice versa.

QR Code Jewelry -
If I weren't so busy (and so indolent) I'd start a cottage industry of Customizable QR Code jewelry or buttons on As it is - I bought the last one from BarcodeArt this morning. Heh heh. I have shopping issues.

QR Code Resources & Articles:
A Time to Give Thanks

It's true the more you give the more your receive... Since I've started sharing more...I've gotten more back. Thank you everyone who has so generously shared with me this year! Thank you students who voted for us for the Edublog nominatios...sorry, no we didn't win...but we loved having you visit us here & see more of what we do for you! Don't be a stranger & always feel free to leave comments with your screen name or first name!

In this season of light & giving- let's all please remember to be generous, supportive, positive, & INCLUSIVE of each other!
/lovefest bah humbug! LOL
Photo credits:
Calvin Klein billboard Mashable
QR Code on Door: Tailor Made Hotel
Flickr Creative Commons QR Code on a Stick - photo by See-ming Lee - Photo shop by me!
iPod Touch 4th Gen from Villa State
QR Code Custom button photo by BarcodeArt
Photo of the Philly Museum of Art - ME!

Monday, December 06, 2010

We've Been Nominated! Edublog Awards 2011

Every year Edublogs, an international committee of technology educators opens up nominations for the very best blogs, wiki's, webinars, virtual world events, use of educational social media & more for that year. The hundreds of nominations are tallied up and a "short list" of nominations are announced for voting from the parents, students, teachers, public & community. There's no money involved..but it's a great honor! And we made it!

To be even nominated is an honor, flattering, and award enough - but what the heck, let's see if we can win this thing!

Vote for the MHMS Tech Wiki!
Click HERE to Vote for the Best Educational Wiki - Please Look & Vote for MHMS Tech Wiki - Visit the MHMS Tech Wiki which was started in 2006 and provides professional development technology help & tips for staff and visitors worldwide!

On an exciting side note....Vote for Ms. Jones!
Click HERE to Vote for the Best Librarian Blog - Please Look & Vote for The Daring Librarian
Voting Ends Midnight December 14th.
Thank you for your inspiration & support!

Ms. Gwyneth Jones - aka The Daring Librarian of MHMS Media for the past 14 years has also been nominated for an unprecedented 4 different awards -quick voting links below - your support & votes would be gratefully appreciated. Having Fun Voting? Ms. Jones is also nominated fro these AWARDS!

Only one vote per IP address counts - so voting from home is key! No registration is necessary and voting - using the quick links below - only takes a few minutes!

Click HERE to Vote for the Best Use of Video/Visual Blog - - Please Look & Vote for The Daring Librarian

Click HERE to Vote for the Best Webinar Series - Please Look & Vote for the TL Virtual Cafe
Ms. Jones is the TL Virtual Cafe Coordinator that provides FREE webinars to librarians & teachers worldwide on her own time.

Click HERE to Vote for the Best Use of a Virtual Network - Please Look & Vote for ISTE SIGMS
Ms. Jones assisted with the creation of the 21st Century Library Media Center Playground in Second Life on her own time.

Thank you again! YAY!

Friday, December 03, 2010

MHTV Celebrates the Maccabeats & Chanuka!

or...It's a Maccabeats Chanuka!

Our middle school kids really got into the Maccabeats Candlelight (lyrics) video this morning on MHTV- our live TV news broadcast. In fact, people were singing it all over the school! I just had to share the Maccabeats because they are a bucket full of AWEsome! This music video re-mix mash-up teaches diversity, history, and pure potato latkes love! A great video to show your school to celebrate Haunnukah & teach multiculturalism Oh and FUN! YAY!

Our Lead Story Intro Script:
In our continuing celebration of Chanuka, the festival of lights, we bring you a special music video created by the Maccabeats, an a capella group from Yeshiva University.
Strongly committed to the "integration of traditional and non-traditional wisdom, the Maccabeats perform remixes of an array of Jewish, American, and Israeli songs." Here is their Chanuka mixup titled Candlelight. - (show video)

We couldn't help filming our TV studio kids as they spontaneously started dancing as we were playing this to the whole school (of course they were extra silly when we pulled out the flip cam!) But I think you can see that in this DC Metro school, kids of every race & religion enjoyed the infectious joy of this music video. Flip video footage by my MHTV Co-Executive producer, Gifted & Talented teacher, and fellow Geek Tribe member, Elizabeth Singleton.

The Maccabeats bring peace, joy, love, tolerance, and infectiously danceable songs & videos! Think of the Warblers on Glee but with a Yarmulke! - Gwyneth Jones (heh heh in case you wanna quote me!) the Candlelight song on iTunes

Thank you Maccabeats & Uri Westrich!

ps. because Youtube is blocked in most schools could you please upload all your positive school-friendly & educational music videos to TeacherTube? Thanks!

UPDATES! From an email:


Re: Murray Hill Middle School says THANKS!

Thanks so much Gwyneth! It's really nice to hear things like that. I'll have to look into this TeacherTube. I never heard of it before.

Sent to: gwynethanne

YouTube UPDATE: We've had an amazing 490 views of the video above! Don't forget to leave your comments! : -) ~ms. jones

Related articles:
Hanukkah video helps Jews sing new tune
'Dynamite' Hanukkah Remix: Maccabeats Spoof Taio Cruz

Maccabeats's Hanukkah Song Becomes Online Hit

We're not the only ones talking about this awesome viral video! From Just Jared-

"A capella group The Maccabeats covering Taio Cruz’s song “Dynamite” with a Jewish spin on it!

“I flip my latkes in the air sometimes, singing ay-oh, spin the dreidel,” the group sings about Hanukkah. “Just want to celebrate for all eight nights, singing ay-oh light the candles.”

The Maccabeats, an all-male a capella group from NYC’s Yeshiva University, have already racked up more than 300,000 YouTube views for the video!

Last month, The Today Show anchors also recorded their version of “Dynamite” complete with beatboxing! -

Read more from Just Jared

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Livescribe Pencast Book Reviews & More!

Or...Craft Time with the Daring Librarian!
Ms. Jones loves gadgets! I've been talking about the Livescribe pen on my Gadget-A-Go-Go wiki & in presos at conferences for years now! Finally, I got one! Woohoo! to do with it? Hmmmm SO many ideas!

Background information: the Livescribe pen will record audio and writing/drawing and can play back with just a tap of the pen. You can also send out the "Pencasts" as both audio and video recreation as you can see & hear in the example below.

How to Create a Pencast Book Review!
Now, I gotta say...this is a really cool idea but... it ain't that pretty! Any suggestions on how to neaten up the process would be appreciated.
How it works - you'll need:
1. Livescribe pen - I have a 4g (buying information)
2. Livescribe paper
3. Scissors & Tape
4. Created bookmarks or shelf-talkers (you can make your own or download mine from my wiki)

Think up a quick book review or read the blurb as you click the Record button on the Livescribe paper and write the word "HERE!" on the same special paper - Read out your review then click Stop when you're done. I had to try this a few times before I got it right. Cut out that piece of paper and write the other words around "Tap the pen (HERE!) to hear the Pencast Book Review" around it. As you can see my handwriting sucks...isn't all that pretty. I cut out the playback buttons on the Livescribe paper except for the RECORD button (I was born at night, but not last night!) and tape the direction sheet to the inside front of the book. I also tape a Pencast Book Review bookmark to the inside back cover (so I can see which books have the reviews and which don't!) The pictures to the left are of the really cool graphic novel by Barry Deutsch called Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword - about yet another Troll fighting 11 year old Orthodox Jewish girl! A present from dear new Geek Tribe buddy & fellow Teacher Librarian Mr. John Schumacher of Brook Forest Elementary School in Naperville, Illinois! Nice!
I also taped a shelf talker to the book rack so when a book comes back that has the Pencast Book Review I can plop it there... the Bookmark says:

How it Works:
The student signs out the pen then wanders around our Library Media Center and when they see the bookmark they can tap & listen to a book review! The cool part is that the computer built into the pen remembers each diff piece of that special Livescribe paper and goes directly to the right review! But the not so cool part is that it's a lot of paper taped to a book with my funky handwriting! So far, the coolness part has won over my kids and I joke off my handwriting saying "I'm still practicing" or that because of keyboarding for the last 19 years I've slacked off with the legible penmanship.

I'm gonna have kids start recording these but I had to do a few as a practice...the fourth one is a blooper! No laughing! LOL Ok....snickering is fine.

Listen to the Pencast Book Review:

Other Livescribe Library Ideas:
  • TV Studio Equipment! Record directions on the Livescribe paper and tape to different equipment pieces in the TV Studio!
  • Livescribe Library Treasure hunt! Research, follow the clues, tap and learn!
  • Walking Tour of the School! Tape these around on index cards with the student ambassadors describing that area or room - visitors or new kids can get a map of the school with the Livescribe Walking & Talking Points Tour© and listen as they explore the building!
  • Science & History Day fair exhibits... Can't give up the Trifold? I blogged about it a few weeks ago but how cool would it be if the student doing the research could explain each part of the display in their own words with a tap of the pen?
So for an investment of as little as $99.00 for the 2G to $159.00 you can get an interactive tool that literally speaks volumes for transliteracy!

(Two of my MHTV girls wearing our new MHTV hoodies!)

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Eddie Files: Save Live Action Math

We're making room in the Media Center for new materials and a big stack shift because we have $5000 of new books (mostly fiction requested by kids & teachers) - and we're taking a hard look at what has not been used lately on our AV shelves and we're stuck on a GREAT series of Real Life Math action called the Eddie Files. We have 12 Videos: Each about 20 min and a full teacher's guide with lesson plans and the topics seem super cool! (see very bottom for series list) So the question is Math teachers....should they stay or should they go?

If they stay...will you try and use them? Give them a shot? They're VHS and a little dated, Ok....and the replacement set in DVD is $369....but we have them here...right now...for you...cataloged and just waiting to be discovered and used....OR should we weed them and make room for new materials. Oh and I checked...there's not an updated, re-casted, with similar subject matter.

Why Love Eddie and Ms. Tolliver?

"Through the eyes of Eddie, a fictional 6th grade student in real-life East Harlem math teacher Kay Toliver’s class, viewers discover how people use key math concepts and skills in the workplace. The series includes four “fileboxes” each with 4 episodes and accompanying teacher guide.

20-minute programs, each of which deals with a different topic of the elementary/middle mathematics curriculum. Through the eyes of "Eddie," a 5th grade student in the mathematics classroom of renowned teacher Kay Toliver, viewers find out just how people use key math concepts and skills in life and in exciting jobs.

Endorsed by NAESP, American Association of School Administrators, National Educational Telecommunications Association, NSTA. More than 20 awards, including Peabody and Parents' Choice Awards."

Four "Fileboxes," each with 4 episodes and accompanying teacher guide.

Welcome to Math #101
Eddie's first assignment in Kay Toliver's class is to find out about how people use math in their jobs.

Estimation #102
With help from professionals who use estimation, Eddie makes an educated guess about the number of dogs in New York City.

Geometry #103
Eddie learns how polygons are used to create everything from skyscrapers to collapsible spheres.

Fractions #104
Eddie discovers surprising things about fractions from a chef, a percussionist, and a sports photographer.

Hot Dog Heaven (Distance, Time, and Speed) #201
While Eddie looks for a lost dog, transportation professionals explain how millions of people move around New York City every day.

The Lucky Batting Glove (Statistics) #202
Eddie and Aunt Rosa discover the roles of mathematics in business and sports.

The Veggie Stash-o-Matic (Circles) #203
Eddie works on his assignment—inventing a machine—as designers and engineers share the practical uses of geometry.

The Fake Money Caper (Decimals) #204
To help Secret Service agents track down counterfeiters, Eddie consults with people who create and safeguard the money supply.

Sleep Like a Dog (Length and Area) #301
When Aunt Rosa's dog is cast in a commercial, Eddie learns how people who design and make television and movie sets use math.

The Big Concert (Patterns) #302
While Eddie is preparing for his school's holiday concert, he learns how musicians use patterns.

The Day Manhattan Ran Dry (Volume) #303
Eddie meets people who make sure Manhattan never runs out of water.

Eddie in Barbieland (The Counting Principle) #304
When Eddie is asked to shop for doll clothes for his sister's birthday, he gets help from his teacher and some toy designers.

The Lonesome Pine (Ratios) #401
With the help of foresters and engineers, Eddie looks for a place to plant a young pine tree in Manhattan.

The Green Thumb (Variables) #402
Eddie receives advice from gardeners and a farm manager about the sunflower he is growing for Ms. Toliver's class.

The Dessert Derby (Charts and Graphs) #403
Eddie's Aunt Ida follows professional advice and uses charts and graphs to compete in the East Harlem Community Center's dessert derby.

Take a Bite (Percents) #404
Eddie sees how Ms. Toliver's lesson on percentages applies to graphic design when his photo is chosen for a campaign to bring tourists to New York City.

Series listing from KET

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wikipedia is NOT Wicked!

Hi, My name is Ms. Jones and I use Wikipedia.

There, I said it. Somehow that's pretty freeing! Wikipedia is NOT a dirty word. It's not Fartopedia or Poopopedia (heh heh, middle school is showing!) It's Wikipedia (wiki in Hawaiian means in fast to edit, change, morph, grow, etc.) I really think we're doing a disservice not teaching you...our kids.... HOW to use it and how to cite in - ummm selectively & with forethought and discernment. Sadly, I don't believe teachers & college professors are ready to wrap their mind around or admit recent studies that show: Wikipedia as accurate as Britannica.

Much like the Internets in general, (or the Googles, or the Facebooks, or the Twitters, or the YouTubes) many educators, librarians, and parents look upon Wikipedia with suspicion, sometimes derision, and occasionally with fear.

But who are we kidding? It ain't goin away folks! the Wikipedias are here to stay...It's an Internet Wonder of the World! And for gosh sakes, it comes up top 3 in just about any Google search you do. What? Ignore a good entry for a query? Really? Can you admit, you use it, too?

Using Wikipedia in 5 Easy Steps.

  1. Use it for background information
  2. Use it for technology terms
  3. Use it for current pop cultural literacy
  4. Use it for the Keywords
  5. Use it for the REFERENCES at the bottom of the page!

Tech Terms Here: I mean, I love me my research databases! I do! Heck, I even made a animation video for them! I love you Gale/Cengage, Sirs, Worldbook, and EBSCO - I do! But if I look up Hashtag or QR code there, all I get are a few articles (one by my buddy librarian Mr. Chris Harris! YAY!) but no explanation. No definiton. No examples of real world use. That's just not good enough for you my dear students & readers!

But when you look up Hashtags or QR code in Wikipedia you get it ALL!

For more examples of how to use Wikipedia & how to teach it with our kids, see the Further Reading links below

Click for a Teaching Wikipedia At-A-Glance Comic Tutorial! (feel free to share this with the unbelievers, skeptical admins, and other peeps)

Oh and By the way...this blog posting caused me to work. Yeah, like do something I've never done before and it hurt a little.

Learning something new sometimes feels ouchy and uncomfortable. Because of this posting I created a Wikipedia editing profile and pushed myself to create a Wikipedia page for our school Murray Hill Middle School because I wanted to be there when you... my kids (or your parents) look for us on the Howard County Public School wikipage. Another step forward in Web Presence and Advocacy - & yes, Socialnomics: be where your customers are. But, I got stubborn and pushed through the uncomfortable feeling and Voila! It's done...Whew!

"The goal here is not to take Wikipedia as gospel but to use it to focus your research (via links, keywords and references) and get a little context (via background information). Focusing cuts down the time you spend on the project while context will get you a better grade for your effort." - by rebecca from Gear Fire

Further Reading:
Should I use or cite Wikipedia? Probably not.

4 ways to use Wikipedia (hint: never cite it)

Teachers: Please stop prohibiting the use of Wikipedia

Unnatural acts at Nature

20 Little Known Ways to Use Wikipedia

Study: Wikipedia as accurate as Britannica

The Wikpedia Gap - by Seth Godin

Rosenzweig, Roy. "Can history be open source? Wikipedia and the future of the past" Journal of American History, Volume 93, Issue 1 (June 2006) p. 117-144.

Schiff, Stacy. "Know it all: Can Wikipedia conquer expertise?" The New Yorker, February 26, 2006

And for balance:

Yes, students, there's a world beyond Wikipedia - via Lucy Gray - elemenous !

Photo credits:
Flickr Creative Commons:
Guy Fawks: by Stian Eikeland
Workbench mele By flattop341

Wikipedia Is NOT Wicked!
authenticity, Buffy J. Hamilton, fun, gale, howard county schools, Jimbo Wales, murray hill middle school, sirs, socialnomics, wicked, wikipedia

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Science Fair Revolution: Putting the Trifold on Trial

(graphic by Tim Holt)
The digital shift revolution in educational practice isn't about throwing everything out that has been done before (sometimes to Ad nauseam) but to add projects & product choices that enhance learning and better demonstrate research assessments and the comprehension of data.

In other words: does a diorama and the science fair trifold with pasted on pictures & graphs really best show that the student has grasped the meaning and complexity of the research project. Really?

Several change agents in eduction are asking this question of late (including yours truly) and I would like to start that conversation here, too!
This also ties into the conversation Diane Cordell and I will be leading at EduCon in January (YAY!) The Power of the Product: Creative, Meaningful, & Daring Ways to Demonstrate Information Mastery : This conversation will create a shared list of viable, creative, meaningful, and daring products that demonstrate information mastery, go beyond the regular research report and span the digital divide. The products of this conversation (Google doc, Wallwisher, wiki, & Slideshare) will generate layers of sharing, producing, and value.

Diane Cordell - librarian, photographer, author of the blog Journeys and master researcher and brain trust that she is forwarded the blog of a great thinker Tim Holt from TX about moving away from Analog lessons to Digital lessons - see all28 pages of AWEsome PDF (wish I could embed it for you here!)

He also laments (ok, rants) about his annual call to arms to re-think the traditional science fair project - "Every Year at this time I rant about the need to get rid of science fair projects that rely on centuries old presentation methodologies and move our kids towards more of a, shall we say, modern approach?" - Tim Holt

Click the graphic to visit his site & watch the video. It's worth it.

Again, my stance is: don't rid of the analog - because we have to take into consideration access and the digital divide, but to add to it a menu of digital choices (and provide in-school creation time!) so that all our learning styles and modalities are taken into consideration.

Students...Parents...what do you think?

Not a sermon... just a thought!

Screenshots from the video "A Vision of Science Fair Projects Today" from the Intended Consequences blog by Tim Holt

Power of the Product graphic by The Daring Librarian

Tags: diane cordell, digital divide, digital shift, educon, science fair projects, tim holt, the power of the product

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Bob Edwards Show Visits MHMS & MHTV!

We were SO excited & flattered to host the Bob Edwards Sirius XM show a few weeks ago! They were doing a month long series called Shhhh… Libraries at Work!” (of course I HATE the Shhh! part!) and chose Murray Hill Middle School to represent school libraries. They found us through my professional blog and the interview focused on the future of school libraries, digital literacy, creating a positive digital footprint, research strategies, creating student assessment products, audio books, and how we always push the love of reading to our kids!

In Part 1 (#6 on the iTunes list) you can listen to the Bob Edwards XM Show Podcast featuring MHMS kids, MHTV, & our school library! It starts with Mrs. Singleton's 6th grade reading & research class visited for seminar book selection & talked about the kind of books they like, transitions into our MHTV crew creating our news show, and finishes with ..Mrs. Cullison's class coming in for the Book Pass orientation lessons, and more about books - in all kinds of formats!
From his blog: "We start today’s show off with a visit to a model, modern-day school library. Gwyneth Jones, aka The Daring Librarian, has pulled out all the stops to make her library the coolest place at Murray Hill Middle School in Laurel, Maryland. And it’s hard NOT to feel excited about school libraries after spending a morning with her and the students at Murray Hill. Jones has embraced technology— even (gasp) television – to get kids interested in reading and learning. Forget the stereotype of a matronly, bunned, button-upped librarian trying to maintain silence and order —- Jones likes her library a little rowdy!"

But it's true, we have learning going on but there's also time for fun, teaching, research, & inquiry that is not always.... hmmmm silent!

Also during the interview I talk about our Playaway audio book program so I wanted to show a few pics of how cute these single digital audio books are!

Part 2 is #5 on the iTunes list and it's an interview with yours truly about school libraries and the importance of digital literacy and creating a positive digital footprint. a cringeworthy aside, after listening to both parts of the podcast I do realize I say AWEsome a bit too much! But gee, I mean we've got an AWEsome kids and an AWEsome school! So there!
A couple corrections: we changed our top news story that day to a cooler NASA one about the IBEX spacecraft that also meant we could play "She Blinded Me with Science" by Thomas Dolby song \\FTW!//, is sponsored by Britannica NOT World Book (Oops sorry!) For the Book Pass: Power of Choice activity we didn't have a dozen books out...we had at least 200! (more than a dozen on every table) ...AND we only have 1 media specialist in our school (part 3 said we had 2) ...though my media assistant the AWEsome Mrs. Black and I have worked together now for 19 years, and really when it comes down to it...we're a true team it's like having 2 librarians! Woohoo!

OhEmGee! Look at this email we got!
Hello, Ms. Jones! My name is Michelle Nichols, and I work for the Adler Planetarium in Chicago on NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) mission Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) program. One of our VP's here at the Adler heard the Bob Edwards radio show this past weekend that featured you and your wonderful program to have kids report the news. I listened to the spot this morning and we were so proud that the news clip that the radio show used to illustrate the news program was about IBEX! The students got the science just right, too. We are thrilled that they thought that the story about IBEX's recent info release was worthy of inclusion in their program. They did a great job! Thanks, again, and please tell the kids thanks, also, on behalf of the IBEX E/PO team.

Michelle Nichols,
Master Educator - NASA Forum Programs

The Adler Planetarium

1300 S. Lake Shore Dr. Chicago, IL 60605
Visit the Adler Planetarium Website

Final Note: Since we're sorta bragging here I thought I would share some exciting news with my students & community. I was chosen by Cengage Learning and School Library Journal to be one of 5 national library New Leaders Program for the SLJ Summit in Chicago. I was honored, humbled, floored, & flattered (and frankly gobsmacked!) to have been chosen for this award.
I'll strive to continue to be a library leader & change agent within my community and the nation. Click below to learn more or see my professional blog post. Thank you SO much!