Tag: classroom

Looking Back on the End of the School Year

Looking Back on the End of the School Year

One of my favorite things about working in a school is the school year cycle itself. I love the momentum and the sense of change. There’s a clear beginning (New school supplies! Bright ideas for lessons! Brand. New. Books!) and a clear end (Collecting all the books! End-of-year reports! Putting in final grades!). OK, the […]

Rereading Mysteries, Reveling in Childhood Nostalgia: Not Overrated

Rereading Mysteries, Reveling in Childhood Nostalgia: Not Overrated

When I started my “mystery mystery” project last year, I really enjoyed going through my collection and pulling mysteries to put into brown paper bags in order to entice students to read those books.  I grew nostalgic thinking of my own mystery-loving self as an elementary school kid. But as I wrapped up the books, […]

When Reading Feels Like Work, Reboot

When Reading Feels Like Work, Reboot

When reading books is a vital part of your job, it’s easy to love what you do. Of course, I don’t get to read books at work (unless it’s out loud at story time), but I still consider it a perk. As someone who works in a school, I might not get to leave the building to […]

After the Series: Character-Driven Baseball Books for Youth
By November 10, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

After the Series: Character-Driven Baseball Books for Youth

Here in Chicago, students and teachers are still recovering from the World Series—among other things. Although I loved watching the playoffs this year, historically, I’ve preferred to experience baseball in book form. Growing up, baseball was the family sport. Hence, I’ve read my way through literally hundreds of baseball games, from t-ball to coach pitch to high school […]

Beyond Katniss: Creative Book-Related Halloween Costumes
By October 31, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

Beyond Katniss: Creative Book-Related Halloween Costumes

Every year, I debate whether or not to dress up for Halloween in the library. Every school is different of course, but at the one where I currently work, most students celebrate Halloween, and dressing up is part of school culture. At a pre-K–8 school, there’s a wide difference between what each grade level does for Halloween. […]

The Important Thing about Library Orientation
By September 28, 2016 0 Comments Read More →

The Important Thing about Library Orientation

Is there any time more ripe with possibility and expectation than the beginning of a new school year? I’m brimming with ideas and excited to see students coming back. I must admit, however, that I’m less excited about library orientation: the same lesson over and over again, the listing of rules and expectations. If I […]

Classroom Hamsters, Red in Tooth and Claw

Classroom Hamsters, Red in Tooth and Claw

Lynn: Many many years ago, when I was a baby librarian, I inherited a library pet from my predecessor, a hamster of variable temper. It soon became clear why Houdini, as I ended up calling him, had been donated: Behind that adorable, fuzzy exterior was a misanthrope thinking only of escape. He slept by day and plotted by […]

“Hey! I Think That Was a Clue!”: Writing Mysteries with Grade-Schoolers

“Hey! I Think That Was a Clue!”: Writing Mysteries with Grade-Schoolers

In my previous post, “The Names of These Books Are Secret,” I wrote about how I got the kids in my grade-school library excited about reading mystery novels using “mystery mysteries.” Although feeling a bit trepidatious I decided to also try out mystery writing with my middle-grade students. Fifth and sixth graders started by defining a […]

The Names of These Books Are Secret: Getting Grade-Schoolers Excited about Mysteries

The Names of These Books Are Secret: Getting Grade-Schoolers Excited about Mysteries

As an adult reader I really like reading mysteries, but this has never been an easy genre for me to sell to my grade-school-library patrons. A quick off-the-cuff book talk at the shelves is really my bread and butter for getting books into kids’ hands, yet I’ve always struggled to do this with mysteries. It […]

Getting the Gardening Bug: Young Readers Will Dig These New Books

Getting the Gardening Bug: Young Readers Will Dig These New Books

Cindy: In the cold north we are finally shedding coats and seeing the first sprouts of spring. The flowering trees are stunning this week and gardeners are itching to get to their beds—and not the ones in which they’ve been slumbering all winter! Young children may not enjoy weeding, but many are certainly eager to […]