Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Red Clover Day & Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award

Red Clover Day 2018

On April 12, Moretown School celebrated Red Clover Day.  The morning was spent with Kindergarten through Fourth Grade participating in a variety of activities centered around our ten Red Clover books.  The Fifth & Sixth Graders were our leaders for the morning.  They worked in teams to design and teach each activity.  Some activities included making marshmallow shooters, painting bookmarks, crafting penguins, decorating cookies, and playing a variety of games.  Students were in mixed grade grouping to enjoy these festivities and great fun was had by all!  At the end, students voted for their favorite Red Clover book.  Our school's results were:

* Moretown Winner "Penguin Problems" 15
They All Saw a Cat 13
Dragon Was Terrible 12
I Dissent 11
Whoosh 9
Ada's Violin 9
The Princess and the Warrior 5
Frankencrayon 5
Otters Love to Play 3
Daniel Finds a Poem 2

The state winner was:  Frankencrayon with 2,773 total votes.  It was quite a close one this year!!

Another item of interest for the Fourth through Sixth Grade is this year's DCF winner: Projekt 1065! If you haven't read it yet, be sure to check it out as it is a fantastic spy thriller!!
The runners up are listed below:

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

OverDrive eBook & Audiobook Shared Collection

I'm happy to announce that Moretown School Library is now a part of Vermont Schools Shared Digital Collection through Overdrive.  What does this mean?  It means that all students now have access to a collection of eBooks and audiobooks that they can check out on any device.

 Do you have an iPad?  Or a Kindle?  Or a Chromebook?  Or a desktop computer?  Now your student can check out books to read or listen to on any of these devices.  They only need their library card number.  This can be found on their library card or their library bookmark or ask me!

 There is a wide variety available that gets updated regularly with new titles for all ages ranges.  It's a great place to look for books on our state awards list too.   The link to the collection is here or on the library website.

If you need help using this resource, please don't hesitate to ask me.  I'd be happy to get anyone started and enjoying these great books and audiobooks.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Thanksgiving Thinglinks

Who were the pilgrims?

Who were the Wampanoag?


Growing Food

Building a Home

What to Wear

Playing and Learning

What's for Dinner


A Child's Role

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Kate Messner Upcoming Author Visit


On the morning of October 10, local author Kate Messner will be giving a presentation to 3rd through 6th graders.  She will be talking to kids about two of her books “The Exact Location of Home” and “The Seventh Wish.”    She will give an inside look into her writing process including research, brainstorming, planning, drafting, and revision.  She will share examples of her writer’s notebook as well as marked up manuscripts to show the editing process.  She will have time to answer student’s questions and sign their books.  

Please see the attached order form to purchase Kate’s books.  She has a large variety of books available from middle grade chapter books to picture books to amazing non-fiction nature books.  All checks should be made out to BEAR POND BOOKS.  Order forms are due by Sept 29th.  


Friday, August 11, 2017

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Supporting UDL in the Classroom with Audiobooks

The past couple of years, my district has been in the process of implementing Universal Design for Learning, or UDL, in our classrooms.  The educational framework creates a flexible learning environment that supports all learners.  The neuroscience behind it shows that each student learns differently, bringing their own strengths and experiences to each learning opportunity.  Therefore teachers need to create multiple ways for students to engage, represent, and express the content.  The scientists who developed UDL initially were looking at how schools can support students who are traditionally marginalized, students who have disabilities, or for whom English is their second language.  What they discovered was that the strategies that help these populations also helped all students learn.  If you’d like more information on UDL, please visit the CAST website.Screen Shot 2017-06-09 at 4.55.59 PM.png
As a school librarian, I needed to think how I could adopt UDL in my own teaching and library space, but I also needed to think about how I could support my teachers as they too implemented these changes in their classroom.  I decided to focus on the 5th and 6th grade classrooms and, in particular, the books that they read as a whole class.  With UDL, teachers should allow students to have choice and flexibility to interact with the content.  One option that I could help provide was audiobooks.  With the help of a grant, I purchased iPods and a subscription to Audible.  I asked the teachers what books they planned on using for their instruction and I asked students what books they were interested in reading.  With this information, I made sure to have the right books for those classrooms.  Students would have the choice to listen to the book that their class was reading and they could choose to listen to a book of their choice during their “Read to Self” time.  

The results of this year was positive.  Thirty percent of the students in 5th and 6th grade chose to listen to audiobooks during the school year.  They report that they were able to be successful in the class assignment because they used the audiobook and that they enjoyed the experience.  About half of the students were students with a reading disability.  The others chose to use the audiobooks for other varied reasons:  the performance was engaging, it helped with time management, and it helped with comprehension.  

The audiobooks helped my own library program as well because students were able to listen to their choice of the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award books.  Due to the integration of audiobooks into their reading choices, every student in the 5th and 6th grade were able to vote for the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award.  I have never had all students participate previously.  Students with various abilities and levels of interests in reading not only were reading the books on the award list, but were discussing them and sharing recommendations with each other.  My library environment changed to be a more inclusive, diverse, & vibrant reading community.  
I interviewed the classroom teachers, the special educator, and a handful of our students who used the audiobooks.  Listen to hear their thoughts and experiences here:
The benefits of having audiobooks available to students are numerous.  Audiobooks are engaging storytelling and can really suck the reader into the world the author creates.  This fits the engagement piece of UDL and can really help those reluctant readers discover stories that they love.    My students often listened while reading along with the book helping them with word recognition, fluency, and comprehension.  Audiobooks also helped students flex their listening muscles gaining a better capacity in their auditory intelligence.  The part about UDL that I like the best is that the use of tools such as audiobooks are available to all students.  This takes the stigma away from students with disabilities who might have been singled out by their use prior.  Audiobooks helped students be successful in their classroom but they also helped students see that reading is fun.    
With this year’s success under my belt, I look forward to expanding my audiobook program to the larger school community.  Be on the lookout 3rd and 4th graders!  Audiobooks are coming from a library near you!  I’ll be looking to find other ways the library can support all students in their journey at our school.  We are a small school, but with the right learning environment, we can have a large impact on our students.  

Red Clover Day & Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award

Red Clover Day 2018 On April 12, Moretown School celebrated Red Clover Day.  The morning was spent with Kindergarten through Fourth...