Monday, March 03, 2008

News From The Library--March 3, 2008

(please press play)

Zinnia's Magical Adventure by Pippa leQuesne

A Book Review by Olive & Bridgette

(Our video book reviews are a hit! We have four more already lined up for the weeks ahead! Stay tuned!)

Also in the Library this week....

Kindergarten--In honor of the celebration of Dr. Seuss' Birthday we read Thidwick the Big Hearted Moose. This is one of the "older" Dr. Seuss books and was the favorite of my two boys when they were young so it's always had a place in my heart. Thidwick is a good hearted moose who lets all kinds of animals and pests ride along on his horns because "a host, above all, must be kind to his guests." But when they endanger him and hunters have him cornered he remembers that "wonderful thing that happens each year to the horns of most moose, and the horns of most deer." The children love his triumph. Once again I was pleasantly amused at the rapt attention the kindergarteners pay to this story with its two color illustrations and longer passages of text. In this day when color and sound and motion are so attractive to them, it was the words and the rhythm of the words that kept them completely enthralled. Thank goodness for Dr. Seuss!

First, Second, and Third Grade-We read our next nominees for the California Young Reader Medal and are looking forward to voting next week!

Fourth Grade--Again, to honor Dr. Seuss, fourth graders saw a Keynote I prepared about Dr. Seuss and his work and had great fun remembering all the Dr. Seuss books they have read. Then I read them his prescient book The Lorax and we had a lively discussion of its implications for today. It's wonderful to hear students talking about hybrid cars, biofuels, and alternative energy as if those are things they assume will be in their futures!

Fifth Grade--Continuing with our lesson on what it means to have an "ethical online presence" fifth graders posted a blog comment this week. You can read their comments by going to the Library Skills Blog and looking in the comments section on the very first post. (They posted using my username or the library username and then put their intitals at the end.) This was a good way for them to actually practice what it means to post their work on a blog as well as to express their understanding of what it means to have an ethical online presence. My goal in these lessons is to introduce them to the new Web 2.0 tools that are available today but to also remind them that these tools change rapidly. What does not change, however, is their sense of personal ethics. What we learned in this lesson should be applied to any new tools in the future.

Sixth Grade-We are having fun with our Wiki! I'm learning right along with the students, too. We named our Wiki "Random Research and Wacky Facts." This week they posted their Tornado research from notes they had taken several weeks ago. Some had time to add a picture or two. We also started a page called Wacky Facts that anyone in the group can contribute to as long as they follow the rules for posting. This includes citing their fact, establishing that the fact comes from a reputable source, and signing their post with their initials only. My goal with the Wiki is to expose them to the way we can collaborate using Web 2.0 tools. Collaboration and the ability to work in this kind of web-based environment will be critical real world skills for our students. The technology will surely change by the time they are in the work force but the skills of flexibility, collaboration, and safe and ethical behavior online will always be important for success.

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