Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Free Sampler of The 5th Wave!

Barnes & Noble is giving away samplers of The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey! It's the first 70 pages of one of the best books I have ever read.

The first three people who respond will get a pony surprise!

This post-apocalytic novel is perfect for middle or high school readers.

Remember, respond to the blog for a copy!
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Monday, April 29, 2013

Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life (James Patterson)

Rafe Khatchadorian is every 6th grade boy. He’s nervous about all the new challenges and rules that come with middle school territory. He’s excited about having a little more freedom than elementary structure afforded. Mostly, he feels overwhelmed that there is entirely too much to take in at once, and what to do with it all.

And then, of course, there's Jeanne Galletta. 

The thing about Rafe is that he is also anything but typical. Along with his very, um, special friend Leo, Rafe constructs an elaborate plan to survive his 6th grade year by defying what is intended to be the safety net of middle school society: the student code of conduct. His adventures might help Rafe make it through the worst year of his life…but they might keep him there as well.

Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life as a title is a work of genius. Everybody is either headed to middle school or has been through it and very likely remembers 6th-8th grades as some of the worst years of their life. I would agree. Largely due to changing bodies and brain chemistry, middle school continues to be a very hard time for teenagers.

For those parents, teachers, and librarians curious about how well this book might meet the needs of their kids, know that it is very nicely done. There are a few twists classic of a James Patterson work, and the addition of humor-laden, skilled illustrations adds a quirky yet highly entertaining layer. The short, brief, action-packed chapters sprinkled with bits of slapstick humor will be appealing for reluctant readers (ahem: BOYS). 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Books to Think About -

Common Sense Media just posted reviews of "five books parents should read". What are your thoughts about these books? I have read a couple of them and I must say that Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys is one of my favorite teen lit books from this year. Which ones are in your library?

Here's a link to the books: Common Sense Media's 5 Books

Thursday, April 11, 2013

More poetry resources

Just a few more fun and interactive sites to use with our students to celebrate National Poetry Month! 
North Highland Elementary School
Scholastic-Poetry-Writing with the Writers
Featuring famous children’s poets Jack Prelutsky, Karla Kuskin, and Jean Marzollo offer advice to young poets on how to write poetry.  Experience the Poetry Writing Engine- a fun and interactive way for children to learn about and create different styles of poetry.
Giggle Poetry
 An interactive site where kids can read  and rate poems, learn how to write them,  and create their own with fun “Fill-in-the-blank” poetry activities.
Poetry for Kids
Read and listen to funny poems by Kenn Nesbitt.  Play poetry games and learn how to write poems.  This site features an awesome Rhyming Dictionary to assist students with writing poetry.  

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Common Core PowerPoint

In doing a little research on Common Core, I came across this PowerPoint that is a great starting point for exploring Common Core.

Here is the link: Increasing Informational Text in ELA, Social Studies, Science, Math. The PowerPoint is from the Long Island Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Their website is filled with Common Core strategies, rubrics, ELL, ESL, math and literacy information. Although the PowerPoint was created in 2011, all of the information is still relevant and fresh.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Importing Records into Atrium

    Here is some handy information for importing records into Atrium: 

1.  Click on the attachment in the email and choose to “save” the file ( I generally save these to my desktop, but you can save it where you want as long as you know where it is later).
    2. Open up Atrium and choose "Catalog".

3. Click "Import MARC file".

4. Click "Browse".

5. Navigate to the file you saved earlier.
6. Click "Continue".

7. Then you should get the confirmation screen. You then click the "blue" words: Review Imported Bibliographic". You will see a screen that looks like a "report" screen that says "View Imported Bibliographic".

8. Now click "edit" and add holdings by inputting a barcode for each record. Rather tedious but necessary. If you are importing records for e-books, go back to step 4 and choose "Import MARC E-book File" and follow the next steps. There will be no need to input barcode numbers.

For a document with screenshots, please e-mail dstaton@jefcoed.com