May 22

Flipping Over The Summer Reading List 2013!

The summer reading list is here & jam packed with great recommendations!

Download the PDF below & check out the Middle School List:  “Groundbreaking Reads!”

2013 MS Summer Reading List Final_with graphics

Here’s the Grownup Summer Reading List for Parents & Teachers!

2013 Adult Summer Reading ListFINAL

Sadly, the  HCL Savage Branch is closing this Summer!  But don’t worry, it’s not for good but for an AWESOME Renovation!! More about that later…

 Now a very heartfelt message from Taylor Swift about overdue books!

From our friend, the HCL Teen Specialist, Sarah Cooke:

The Savage branch’s official last day will be Saturday, July 6.

We are shooting for a re-opening in the fall of 2014, which would be great in terms of the school year, but we’ll all have to wait and see…

I will of course keep you all updated with an official re-opening date! Have a great rest of the school year!

Sarah Cooke
Teen Specialist

Howard County Library System

Savage Branch

410-880-5980

So yeah, like Taylor Swift said above…..don’t be “That Guy” and have overdue library books — please bring back your books and read AWESOME ones this summer!I know I’m gonna read the Divergent series again, and Showboat, and finish listening to the Harry Potter series (5th time) audio books read by Jim Dale. ….ok, and a few shlocky beach books but hey! Summer reading is the BEST!

from our A+Partners at the Howard County Library:

Summer Reading Begins Saturday, June 1!

summer reading kickoffRead and win prizes when you join an HCLS summer reading club:

• Wee Dig: infants to age 3
• Dig into Reading: ages 4 – 10
• Groundbreaking Reads: grades 6+
• Great Reads for Vacay and Stacay: high school students and adults
Summer Reading Kickoff

Sign up for summer reading and participate in a day of fun including children’s stories, face painting, crafts, and activities for children, teens, and adults. Don’t miss the Reptile Wonders exhibit and Pee Wee Pirates Show!

HCLS MILLER BRANCH (410.313.1950)
Sat, June 1
10 am – 2 pm
adult summer readin image of adirondack chairsGreat Reads for Vacay & Staycay
Kick off the adult summer reading club as HCLS instructors discuss their top picks for summer reading. Win books and door prizes at this event; enter a drawing for fabulous grand prizes. Refreshments.
HCLS CENTRAL BRANCH (410.313.7800)
Tue, June 4
7 – 9 pm
groundbreaking reads zombie imageSummer Reading Lock-in for Teens
Celebrate the start of Summer Reading with an evening of games and activities. Sign up for Summer Reading and collect book bucks for participating.
HCLS MILLER BRANCH (410.313.1950)
Fri, June 7
7 – 9:30 pm

If you need a library this summer, why not check out the Elkridge,  Columbia Branch, or the super cool NEWLY Renovated Miller Branch?

Central Branch
10375 Little Patuxent Pkwy
Columbia, MD 21044
Phone: (410) 313-7800
TTY: (410) 313-7883
Details

 

East Columbia Branch
6600 Cradlerock Way
Columbia, MD 21045
Phone: (410) 313-7700
TTY: (410) 313-7740
Details

 

Elkridge Branch
6540 Washington Blvd
Elkridge, MD 21075
Phone: (410) 313-5077
TTY: (410) 313-5090
Details

 

Glenwood Branch
2350 State Route 97
Cooksville, MD 21723
Phone: (410) 313-5577
TTY: (410) 313-5597
Details

 

Miller Branch
9421 Frederick Rd
Ellicott City, MD 21042
Phone: (410) 313-1950
TTY: (410) 313-1957
Details

 

 

May 20

Google+ Hangouts: Cool Conversations and BookTalks Without Borders

This is a story about Sister Libraries, Twitter, Google+ Hangout, and connecting kids! It all started with a Tweet by my dear friend & Tweep  Tiffany Whitehead aka The Mighty Little Librarian and her awesome BFF EL teacher Alaina Laperouse both of Central Middle School in Baton Rouge Louisiana! She had been inspired by a Tweet she had seen about sister classrooms started between and – you know, like sister cities? She said she wanted a sister library & I was like I’m willing!! After a few Tweets back and forth a bit to establish time zones (because I’m an idiot when it comes to time zones!) we finally got our kiddos to meet and chat using Google+ Hangout! I’ve connected with classrooms before using Google Hangout before & blogged about it – but this was different, this was establishing a steady school partnership!

 

Our first chat happened in Kristin Cullison’s classroom with her 6th grade research seminar class (and my media helpers!). Tiff’s kids didn’t know where we were from so they asked my kids questions to discover our location – after a few clues (including steamed crabs and the Chesapeake Bay!) her kiddos correctly guessed Maryland! I shared that one of our favourite books was Weird Maryland and her kids said that they loved the book  Weird Louisiana! It was a super fun moment of a shared love of urban legends where the kids each held up the respective books to show each other live & It was a magic moment! To celebrate this, the next day I sent them the Maryland book! LOVE Amazon Prime! (See pic below from Tiff)  My kids were so impressed with the lovely behaviour & charming Louisiana accents of the CMS kiddos & were urging to connect again!
Our latest chat happened in our respective school libraries with the kiddos trading prepared book talks! Great for summer reading!
To extend this relationship for next year I’m thinking of having our kiddos both join United Classrooms where they can chat back & forth and have moderated discussions. Maybe share those urban legend stories and collaboratively create an urban legend wiki or group on Edmodo, or perhaps start a semi-virtual book club!  A cool idea I haven’t tried yet is we could create a chat room for the event with Today’s Meet  and using a second laptop or computer joining in the Hangout – sharing screen, you can have a moderated chat going on at the same time!

Google Hangout TIPS:

• Practice beforehand!

• Make sure your plugins & browsers are updated & use Chrome!

• Sign in early

• Consider recording via YouTube it to embed or view later

• I added clip-on TV Studio lights nearby to improve the camera shot

• Have kids talking sit close to the laptop for better sound quality

• Practice with your kiddos speaking slowly & loudly – consider recording with a flip camera & previewing their performance

You can see ALL the pictures I took of this growing relationship on my Flickr slideshow below or skip directly to our gallery!

Teachers & Librarians: If you’re interested in trying this out there is a Google+ Community for connecting Google classroom Hangouts! You can also check out the website Google Education OnAir to join in scheduled LIVE Google Hangouts, connect with other interested educators or get tech help to get started!  The Twitter hashtag #eduonair  connects educators with other classrooms creating conversations & relationships.

Tiff was moderating our conversation with her official Harry Potter wand!  We are both ardent  Harry Potter fans, so I have to share this amazing video below of Tiff – the Mighty Little Librarian getting her own wand! It’s magical if you’re an HP fan! My eyes got a little leaky about halfway through! [snif!]


Resources:

32 Tips for Using Google Hangout in the Classroom

EducationOnAir – Google Sites

Google Hangouts as Edtech: Connecting, Sharing and – Edutopia

Credits:

Mustache pic by Tiffany Whitehead

Gwyneth & Alaina pic by Alaina Laperouse

 

Médecins Sans Frontières

My title for this post was inspired by one of my most favoured charitable organizations Doctors Without Borders or Médecins Sans Frontières  – Please consider donating to this worthy cause!