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Sunday, May 3, 2015

Teacher Appreciation Sale

Have you heard the news?  Teachers are being appreciated nation-wide this week. What better time than for Teachers Pay Teachers to throw a sale?!

It's the Teacher Appreciation Days Sale and it will be going on May 5-6.  My store will be participating in the sale which means you can get 28% off my paid products using the PROMO CODE:  ThankYou.

Just in time for the sale, I've added a couple of new themed library/media center packs.  

There's a mustache theme with tons of items including

signs for your library or media center...

bulletin board ideas for recognizing top readers...

group and table signs, library and media center passes, tons of punch cards and bookmarks, and...

a calendar in a matching mustache theme. Adorbs!

Click HERE to check out the MUSTACHE pack.

There is also a doggie theme with tons of items including

signs for your library or media center...

bulletin board ideas for recognizing top readers...

group and table signs, library and media center passes, tons of punch cards and bookmarks, and...

a calendar in a matching doggie theme. So cute!

Click HERE to check out the Fetch a Good Book pack.

And if you're not in a media center, not to worry.  I've added smaller packs of items that can be used in a classroom...for both themes!  There are even a couple of freebies so you can see what some of the items look like. Check out the mustache items HERE.  Check out the doggie items HERE.

Start filling up your cart now to make it easy to shop May 5-6.

Hope you enjoy! And don't forget to apply the PROMO CODE: ThankYou at check out.

P.S.  I am currently working on some more new stay tuned!  =)

Friday, May 1, 2015

May Free Author Poster

This month's free author poster is of Tedd Arnold.  Click HERE or on the picture above to snag this freebie.  This is the last author poster of the school year.  Can't believe it's may already.

If you've enjoyed these freebies, please let me know in the comments.  =)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

State Testing Fun Resources

Tomorrow begins day 3 of state testing for us here in Coweta County Georgia. Our state test is called the Georgia Milestones Assessment.  This year the test is spread out over 9 days so there are days built in for make ups, so I imagine we'll all feel like we've run for many miles by the time its over. It might be hard to keep up the testing "spirit" for that long, but there are some great resources out there that might be helpful.

One of our first grade teachers organized a visit from the NED Show last year and the kids loved them. The NED Show has a motivation video about testing that I showed a few weeks ago during Media lessons to get the 3rd-5th graders pumped up.  It's a catchy tune..gets stuck in your head after showing it 10 times in one week.  =)

A blog reader emailed me the link to this cute YouTube video made by Cohutta Elementary. (Thanks, Holly!)

And I've come across several others on YouTube:

And here are a couple of general state testing parody videos...

This is an older one, but still fun...

Teachers Pay Teachers also has some fun FREE printables to give to students and some cute testing signs teachers could use for their doors.

THIS test prep freebie from Staying Cool in the Library has posters and bookmarks to make testing more enjoyable.

HERE's a Motivational Test Taking Posters freebie from Number Two Pencils.

You can snag these Free Testing Signs from Learning Lab HERE.

It might be a little late this year to use THESE Test Prep Strategy Posters from Created by Kelly Ann, but maybe you can save them for next year.

Hope you can find something you can use, and if you are testing this week like us, good luck!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Happy National Library Week

I have been such a bad blogger.  I haven't posted in several weeks.  I had some fabulous posts planned (in my head) for National Library Week, but alas, they did not get written.   I could give you a list of reasons why I have been absent from bloggyland, but they aren't very interesting.  So here we are almost at the end of National Library Week and all I've got is this one little post, but perhaps if you stick with me, I will have something special to share at the end of this post.

I have been sharing fun  trivia facts about public and school libraries all week during announcements at my school, so I figured it would be fun to share them on my blog, too.  Some of these facts are not so much fun as they are depressing, but these are the facts.

  • 98.7% of public libraries provide public access to the Internet.
  • Almost 89% of public libraries offer wireless Internet access.
  • 59% of adults in the U.S. have public library cards.
  • Americans check out an average of more than eight books a year.
  • Americans spend $35.81 a year for the public library..about the average cost of one hardback book.
  • There are 80,100 public school libraries.
  • There are 1,820 public charter school libraries.
  • Students make over 1 billion visits to school library media centers each school year.
  • As of 2013, there were a reported 62,364 state-certified school librarians in U.S. public schools and 3,909 state-certified school librarians in U.S. private schools.
  • As of 2013, about 27% of American school libraries do not have a state-certified school librarian.  This number may be higher now due to budget cuts.
  • In 15% of American public schools, the state-certified school librarian spends time in more than one school. This is becoming more and more common.
  • On average, there is one school librarian for every 953 students.
  • Family literacy activities are supported by 42% of public school libraries.
  • As of 2013, school libraries were spending an average of only $9.35 per child for books. This is about a half to a third the cost of a hardback book, which is around $19-$27.
  • Research shows that the highest achieving students attend schools with well-staffed and well-funded library media centers.
One fact I'd like to add is that National School Librarian Day is on April 4th.  It fell on a Saturday this year.  I am not sure why it wasn't moved back a day so that school librarians could celebrate at school, but it is something to note for the future.  But just in case no one told you,

See what I did there?  Told ya, I have been a bad blogger lately. But hopefully you buy into the "it's the thought that counts" philosophy.  I really do mean it. I hope that you had a fabulous National School Librarian Day, even if you didn't know that is was National School Librarian Day.  You probably don't hear it often enough, but all the hard work you do is appreciated.  =)

Here are some sources of information about public and school libraries:

More Interesting Reads:

Why Do We Need School Libraries? Written by Melinda Graham, 2005

Occupational Outlook Handbook, Librarians (2012)

Why You Need Your School Librarian Written by Kimberly Shearer (2012)

Elementary Librarian: Are School Libraries Still Necessary (2013)

How Cuts and Closures of Elementary School Libraries Are Hurting Our Kids by Solvej Schou (2014)

Check out THIS fun video from Flocabulary called "Ode to Librarians."

And now, as promised, the surprise!  In honor of National Library Week, I am throwing a 15% off TpT sale!

Surprise! I changed the clipart a bit on this image.  LOL  The sale will run through Saturday.  You can get to my TpT store, by clicking HERE.

Hope you enjoy the rest of your week.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Free Author Poster

This month's spotlight author is Jarrett Krosoczka.

To download your free author poster, click on the picture above or click HERE.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

300th Post Celebration

300 posts?!  I can hardly believe that I started this blog only three and half years ago.  At the time, I thought it would be a great way to chronicle my journey as a school library media specialist.  I never dreamed that it would become a place to share and collaborate with other SLMS and TLs all over the country and even the world.  I have learned so much through blogging, made some professional and personal connections, and hopefully have shared something helpful, too.  It has been a fantastic journey and I am happy to be sharing it with you.

Here's a look back on the top five most popular blog posts thus far:

Helping Patrons Help Themselves
This was one of my earliest blog posts and has been the most viewed, too.  In it I wrote about how I want my students to be able to find the materials they need and want when they need and want them, and how I planned to accomplish that.  You can read the entire blog post HERE.

Parts of a Book, Good Fit Books, and Shelf Order
Shew! That is a title that covers a lot.  It seems that even a year later, I was still teaching patrons to be able to find what they needed and wanted, but also to find materials that were good fit for their reading skills.  Those are lessons that can never be taught enough.  You can read the entire blog post HERE.

Dictionary Skills
This is one post that gets a lot of hits around this time of year as we are all gearing up for state testing.  The lessons I posted about were so much fun for the students that I repeated them this year.  They kids didn't seem to mind. They had a ball.  You can read the entire blog post HERE and download your free dictionary skills activity pack.

Book Tasting Anyone?
I can't take credit for the book tasting idea. It was all over Pinterest and many other librarians held book tastings and blogged about it long before I tried it. It was just such a fun idea that I had to jump on board.  You can read all about my book tasting adventure HERE in this blog post and download your copy of the book tasting pack.

Figurative Language Activity
This is another one of the posts that gets a lot of hits around state testing time.  It also a fun lesson to do in April because it's National Poetry Month.  You can read more about this fun activity HERE.

And of course I have added many freebies to my blog over the years.  Currently there are over 100 freebies available for downloading.  You can click HERE to go to the freebies page and check them out.

To celebrate this milestone, I am throwing a TpT sale beginning March 17th and running through the 19th.  All paid products in my TpT store will be 20% off.  Thanks for following me on this journey that I hope to be on for many more years.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Read Across America 2015

It's March 2nd, which means it's time for Read Across America.  I guess I must have gotten a lot of rest during our snow rain day on Wednesday, because on Friday I got busy setting up and decorating for the week.

Here's what the Media Center looks like...

First I covered the tables in red bulletin board paper, but that looked too plain.  So I added I couple of stripes of white bulletin board paper. We'll see how well it holds up.  I might not repeat it again next year if it tears easily.

I also decorated the outside doors of the Media Center with cut outs I had made a few years ago.  I added a new poster I made this year to fill in the space at the top.  You can get a copy of that poster HERE.

Here are some close ups of the doors...

And some close ups of the decor above the doors...

I also set up some centers that I had used in previous years...

Here are the centers broken down one by one...

This center is no longer available from where I originally downloaded it, but THIS alternative ABC order game is free from Lil Country Librarian.

I made my own dictionary center for the older kids.  You can get a copy of the activity sheet HERE.

I got this center several years ago, but the one I use is no longer available.  You can find an alternative one HERE on TpT from Siging Elle for $3.00.

I also acquired these word searches several years ago, but you can find some alternatives HERE from Kendall Shubra for free or HERE for $7.99 from Steven's Social Studies Stuff.

New for this year is a center all about Dr. Seuss' life.  I purchased this center HERE from Kathleen Cool of Staying Cool in the Library.  I think it's going to be a great addition.

The puzzle center is always a big hit with the younger grades, so last year I purchased a few Dr. Seuss floor puzzles.  

This antonym center is no longer available from where I got it, but THIS alternative from The Can Do Classroom is available for $1.25.

I also made a thesaurus center to make it a little more challenging for the upper grades.  You can get a copy of the activity sheet HERE.

And I have the Reading Pledge taped to the wall next to the circulation desk so that students can sign it as they are checking out.

You can get a copy of the copyright friendly Reading Pledge HERE.

There are TONS of other great Seussy items available on TpT.  I just did a search for "Seuss" and THIS is what came up.  You could even narrow it down to just the free items and you would get a lot to look through.

I also decorated a couple of shelves and added Dr. Seuss books to it.

And because I was in a Seussy mood this weekend, I made a couple of new centers in a red and white theme.

This is a call number sorting center.  Help your students practice identify the Easy (aka Everybody or Everyone), Fiction, and Nonfiction call numbers using this center.  You can get this center HERE in my TpT store.

This is a shelf order center.  Help your students practice shelf order by having them place these call number cards in order.  Included are cards with different call numbers for the Easy (aka Everybody or Everyone), Fiction, and Nonfiction sections.  You can get this center HERE in my TpT store.

These centers would be perfect for Read Across America, but could also be used for Valentine's Day and even Christmas, but they are generic enough that you could use them all year long, too.

Both of these products will be 50% for all of March 2nd in honor of Dr. Seuss' birthday.

Here are my previous Read Across America Posts:

Some other fun Seuss resources you might like to check out:  

Happy Read Across America!