Sunday, October 6, 2019

Varied Library Usage

New Age of the Library

The new face of the library and what libraries are used for has changed from days past as a quiet place to hide away, to an active bustling location for social interactions, research, exploration, and education beyond the classroom walls. This week wrapped up the six weeks for library lessons so our students were involved in library stations. Stations this week offered students the opportunity to learn how to rotate, work collaboratively, and practice station expectations. At the end of each six weeks students will engage in other choice activities that will utilize STEM to apply science, technology, engineering, and math skills while creating or completing book related challenges.



Tan-gram puzzles for problem solving 


Tumblebooks for reading station 


Game of checkers anyone?

STEM challenge to build the tallest structures or longest bridges

Student Council 

Fourth and fifth grade students have been preparing themselves to present speeches to their peers in order to provide reasons as to why they should represent their classes on the Alkek Student Council. Each class will choose two representatives that will attend Student Council meetings to work for their peers in creating a school environment that build student pride and community. 

Friday, October 4th became a campaign day in the library, where students listened to their peers, made informed decisions, and exercised their rights to vote. Representatives must be reflective of several qualifying characteristics: academics, attendance, and character.

Fourth Grade Candidates :

Fifth Grade Candidates :

Electronic Ballots

Winners will be announced on Monday! Good Luck to all that participated! 

First Six Weeks Top Readers

Each six weeks I will be selecting and announcing our top library patrons. These students have read the top number of books for the six weeks. Through our library management system students are analyzed by the number of books they have checked out with also the length of time spent reading these books. Each student will be recognized by announcement and presented with a certificate, ribbon, book of their choice, and prize.

2nd Grade: Lake Battle
3rd Grade: Elle Vander Zee
4th Grade: McKenna Jones
5th Grade: Maverick Jones

Bluebonnet Program Progress

Our Bluebonnet Books are flying off the shelves and students are signing up for holds left and right! As students make progress they are sharing with our Alkek community of learners by posting their reads outside of the library and on our Bluebonnet voting chart. Our students are working hard to make the required number of reads so they can vote in January and join in on the Bluebonnet Bash!

Library Stats:

Checkouts: 782 items were circulated this week
Holds: 26 holds were placed
New Books: 20 new books were added to our collection for check out

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Collective Collaboration

Being in the library leads to numerous ways students can collaborate. Students can work together on projects, bounce ideas off of one another, work together to find books, and enjoy time learning and increasing their library skills. This week many of our lessons included collaboration to learn more about books and our library.


This week Pre-K students worked on identifying characteristics of the season of fall and created leaf rubbings to decorate their fall trees with.


This week kindergarten students worked on identifying fiction and nonfiction differences. This is a skill that students have been working on in class, and in order to support their in class learning in the library we identified books that fit each category. Then students were challenge to cut pictures out of real items that would be nonfiction sources then identifying the remaining pictures as fiction sources. 

First Grade

First graders worked together to learn parts of a book through the use of a Pear Deck presentation. Students not only increased their awareness of the parts of the books they read, but they worked on assisting each other with how to draw using a Chromebook mouse pad! This was a great lesson to integrate technology skills that our first graders are using in class with our book foundation skills!

Image result for pear deck logo

Second Grade

Second graders also worked on identifying parts of a book, but at a more in depth level! After watching a song over the parts of the book and then working as a whole class to review, students were then placed in teams to manipulate pieces of a book and label them. All classes did an excellent job and had a great time while doing it! 

Third Grade

This week in library our third graders looked back at The Library Dragon and collaborated with partners to complete a library scavenger hunt to better familiarize themselves where library resources are located. Afterwards students shared with their classmates what they learned.

Fourth and Fifth Grades

Fourth and fifth grade classes worked in collaborative teams on a scavenger hunt as well. This scavenger hunt tested their skills from our lesson on call numbers and how to locate resources in the library on the shelves. 

You've Been Booked!

This year in order to introduce students to some of our newer books we have instated the "You've Been Booked" Program. Chosen grade levels will receive appropriate leveled picture books that are new to the library, teachers complete the read aloud and then pass the book bag on to the next teacher within that grade level. Kinder and third grade both completed and returned their first booked bags!

Banned Book Week

Every year libraries across the nation celebrate the freedoms we have in choice of what we read. This week is known as Banned Book Week. This week recognizes books from the past and current books that organizations and others have tried to censor and remove from libraries. Banned Book Week helps others recognize the harmful effects of censorship. Thanks to the teachers who stopped by and took their picture with their favorite banned books!

Library Stats for this week:

Classes visited: 28 
Total circulation: 822 books
Total Holds created: 21
Overdue books: 

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Blue Spirit Week

Bulldog Pride Week!

This week brought lots of spirit as the students, faculty/staff, and community ready themselves for Homecoming Friday! Many participated in themed dress up and showed their Big Blue Spirit! 

Texas Bluebonnet Book Program

This week our third through fifth grade students were introduced to the Texas Bluebonnet Award Nominees. They learned that these books were specifically selected by a committee of readers/librarians/teachers from the TLA (Texas Librarian Association). Our students have until January to read the required 5 books in order to cast their votes and make their voice heard on which books were their favorite. Students also learned that I will be hosting a Bluebonnet Bash for qualified readers to come to the library at a special time during January to vote, celebrate, and receive awards and prizes for their accomplishments. 

Texas Bluebonnet Reading Requirements for Alkek Elementary Students:

  • 3rd to 5th grade students can participate
  • 5 book minimum to vote
  • 3rd graders must read 5 TBB books to get to the Bluebonnet Bash
  • 4th and 5th graders must read 10 TBB books to get to the Bluebonnet Bash
  • Students should join the Alkek Library Learners Google Classroom and complete self-selected response methods for the TBB books they read!

Kindergarten Check Outs 

The kinder students have been practicing their book care for the past two weeks. Most of our students have shown that they are ready to advance in the library by checking out real library books! These books will be kept in their classrooms to ensure continued practice of responsibility. By the end of October they should be ready to take these books home on a weekly basis.

First Grade Check Outs

Our first grade students got to come to the library and complete their gallery walk to see their Dot Day dots come to life with the Quiver App. This week they will be taking them home, parents this app is free to download and works on any phone or tablet. First graders also got to check out and take home their first books this week!!! Every other week our lesson time will include checkout and reading time in the library! Parents please help your child get their book into their backpacks every night so they have it at school. Not sure when your child has their library day...check out the homepage on our website for their schedule! 

Region 20 Librarian Round-Up Fun

Every year Region 20 hosts an amazing conference specifically for librarians in the regional area. This was my first year to attend and I can say I will be there every year. Amazing authors and keynote speakers, superb breakout sessions with lots to spark lesson ideas, training on how to advocate for your library...I could go on and on! Too many good sessions and too little time. I loved meeting the author Marc Tyler Nobleman, hearing his amazing tale of the power one voice can make, purchasing some of his books, and even squeezing in a photo op! 

Library Statistics for the Week

  • Circulation of 627 books 
  • 22 classes were serviced

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Dot Day Celebrations All Week!

International Dot Day centers around the children's book The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds. In this book students learn that the marks they make, physically and emotionally, are important and can leave a lasting impact. I registered our campus through the Dot Club where 182 countries and an estimated 16, 536, 819 students were registered to participate in Dot Day celebrations.  Every grade level listened to the story, learned The Dot song, and created their own mark to share with their classmates.

5th Grade 

5th Grade

3rd Grade

2nd Grade


This week's Library Statistics:

  • 562 checkouts
  • 28 classes visited the library for lessons
  • 2 different facility uses

Next week's Library Lesson Preview:

PreK/PPCD: Book Care
Kinder: Parts of a books and checkout
1st: Dot Day Gallery walk and checkout/Library Stations
2nd: Dot Day Gallery walk and Library Stations
3rd: Bluebonnet Program and 30 book Challenge begins
4th: Bluebonnet Program and 40  book Challenge begins
5th: Bluebonnet Program and 50 book Challenge begins

Sunday, September 8, 2019

A Short, but Busy Week!

This past week we worked hard to see everyone in the library with our week being short due to the Labor Day Holiday, Grandparent's Day luncheon on Friday and a district wide Librarians meeting Friday afternoon as well!
  • Kinder classes got to take their first practice library book to work on their book care skills with
  • First Graders reviewed their book care skills and worked collaboratively to sort the do's and don't's of book care rules
  • Second graders checked out their first books for the year
  • Third grade learned about Miss Lotta Scales and collaborated with groups to create book care rules for her
  • Fourth graders got to experience what a chill day is like in the library selecting to work collaboratively to create Lego creations, relax in our flexible seating to read, or challenge their friends and minds to checkers or Jenga, while some created their own stories in the puppet center.
Fourth Grade's Chill Day

Third Grade and Book Care Rules

Second Grade and Book Care rules

First grade sorting book care do's and don't's

This Week's Library Stats:


549 Books


We added 5 new digital classrooms to our campus!

Classes that visited:

20 classes visited the library 

Next Week:

International Dot Day Celebrations 9/15ish
Patriot Day - 9/11

Friday, August 30, 2019

This Week in Library:

Library Visits

We have had an amazing week in the library! All the classes have visited and learned about the rules and expectations while in the library for class or for independent activity times. K-1 classes will be waiting to check out until they practice becoming great book protectors and uses, while 3-5 have books in their hands. 2nd grade will be checking their books out next week! 

5 Finger Rule

We are practicing using the 5 Finger Rule to help ourselves find good fit books for our reading time. Students can help themselve determine if a book is a good fit for their reading level by following these steps:

  1. Choose a book
  2. Open to any page
  3. Begin reading
  4. Hold a finger up for each word that is unknown
  5. 2-3 fingers means a good fit  4-5 fingers means it's too hard 
Students can use this strategy with anywhere they can find books they might want to read.

Week's Statistics 

  • We had 369 books checked out this week! 
  • 603 students visited the library 
  • 24 classes came in
  • 5th grade started their digital library break out activity'
  • 20 new Bluebonnet award nominee books were added to our collection

Texas Bluebonnet Award Program

Be looking for letters to come home next week about our Texas Bluebonnet program. Students in grades 3-5 must read at least 5 to be able to participate in the voting booth in January. Students who read all 20 books will receive a special certificate and prize. Those that read their 5 book minimum to vote will get a certificate recognizing their accomplishments! I am excited to see which books will win for our campus and the state of Texas. There are some amazing ones this year!