Background from

Friday, December 9, 2016

Holiday Book Fun!

First graders at Dallas Center Elementary recently read the favorite Olive, the Other Reindeer by Vivian Walsh and J. otto Siebold.

We read the book together, making predictions about Olive's time with Santa and the reindeer, as well as comparing Olive's reindeer adventure to Rudolph's.

Then, students created their own reindeer "self portraits" as a follow-up activity. (Thanks to RM MC from ARTventurous--here's her original post.) Check out some of the students' work!

Many of the students' reindeer, then, were part of a display in our library hallway.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Book Trailer Resource

The winners of our recent Scholastic Book Fair All for Books competition were awarded with a popcorn party in the library recently. Rather than follow the scheduled lesson that day, Class 5P enjoyed popcorn and book trailers that day! All book trailers came from my Book Trailers and Digital Storytelling board on Pinterest. (CLICK HERE to access the board.)

Based on their enthusiasm, I'm eager to to see titles like Artemis Fowl, Boundless, and Fablehaven return to frequent circulation, and students were also buzzing about newer titles like Raymie Nightingale and Crenshaw.

Happy reading!

Friday, November 11, 2016

ICCA Pre-reading Activities

With our Iowa Children's Choice Award read alouds coming up, students in 3rd - 5th grade accessed some background knowledge related to the books. All information was accessible to them in Google Classroom, where students read or watched summaries, author interviews, and related connections.

This group of students will be working with Lauren Tarshis's book I Survived the Great Chicago Fire, 1871.

Along with the book trailer, third graders also watched a video that explained some of the lessons learned from the Great Chicago Fire. 

From the author's website, students also read material related to Tarshis's research process and the I Survived series itself. 
You can access the full document HERE.

These students will be reading and listening to the book Dash by Kirby Larson.

In addition to watching the book trailer and reading a short summary and character description, students learned a little about what life may have been like in a Japanese internment camp from the perspective of someone who was there. Densho, an organization that works to tell the story of Japanese-Americans' internment during World War II, includes archived video that students accessed.

The book Loot by Jude Watson is the book that 5th graders will listen and respond to during this unit.

Students watched a book trailer and another short video with the author talking about her book. Also, because the story includes cursed gemstones, 5th graders learned a little about the Hope Diamond and what some people believe to be the curse upon it from a Learn360 video.

Now that students have gained some background knowledge related to their books, we're ready to start reading and talking about them. More Google Classroom activities and hands-on activities to follow!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Ahoy, Mateys! The Book Fair is Coming!

With conferences rapidly approaching, it's time to remind everyone that the Scholastic Book Fair is coming to your elementary school! All of our elementary libraries will host a book fair during the afternoons and evenings of conferences on Tues. Nov. 1 and Thurs. Nov. 3.

At Dallas Center Elementary, students have two contests in which they can participate during Book Fair week. When students visit the book fair during their library classes, they can guess the number of goldfish in the bowl. 
The student who comes closest to the actual number will win $10 in Scholastic Dollars to spend during the book fair, and the students whose guesses come in second and third place will each win a poster from the book fair.

Also at Dallas Center Elementary, students' classes are competing in a coin war to raise money for Scholastic's charity called All for Books, a group that donates books and resources to foundations that support children's literacy efforts. The All for Books contest will start Tues. Oct. 25 and wrap up on Tues. Nov. 1.
So gather all of those coins, mateys, and participate with your classmates. A popcorn party in the library awaits for the winning class!

Can't make it to the book fair? No worries! You can also shop our online book fair. Purchases will be sent to the school and delivered to your student. The Dallas Center Elementary online fair can be found by CLICKING HERE.

We hope to see you soon at conferences, and be sure to stop by your student's library to browse and shop the book fair!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Dot Day Celebrations, 2016

Today is International Dot Day, and we've been celebrating all week long! Some of our South Prairie students participated in Google Hangouts with students at Dallas Center Elementary, sharing the alouds Mix It Up and The Adventures of Beekle the Unimaginary Friend.

After reading Mix It Up, Dallas Center Elementary students also read The Dot and "made their marks" with the app QuiverVision and the Dot Day coloring page.
To access the PDF, click here.

Students colored their dots, and with the app were able to see their dots become three dimensional. The app also creates images using their dots.

After reading about Beekle, our new partner classes--Mrs. Washington's 2nd graders and Mrs. Grant's 5th graders--created their own new unimaginary friends to share through the mail, and both groups are eager to read and work together again in future Google Hangouts!
Other first grade classes celebrated Dot Day by pairing Press Here with The Dot and then making their marks creating their own dot books.

Dallas Center Elementary fifth graders also celebrated Dot Day and made their marks digitally. After reading The Dot, students searched for dots all around the library, taking pictures of their finds. 

Then, using the app PicCollage, students created collages featuring all of their library dots. 

So much fun celebrating Dot Day again--be sure to look at our SnapChat and Instagram accounts (DCGLibraries) to see more pictures!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Fairy Tale STEM Work

With a generous grant from our PTO this fall, we purchased many new library center and lesson materials, including these STEM Fairy Tale sets from Lakeshore Learning. (You can find them here.)

Three familiar fairy tales are included in the set: The Three Billy Goats Gruff, The Three Little Pigs, and Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Each kit has a story recap to read with students, planning/creating/testing task cards, building materials, and story figures. 

After retelling the fairy tales together as a group, we focused on the task cards for each tale. Students were eager to build; however, without a plan, groups were without direction. The task cards helped provide direction.
Task cards from The Three Billy Goats Gruff kit

Students worked from paper copies of the task cards, and then the building began! Check out some of their successful work!