January 2020 – Library News
Greetings MP Families,
I cannot believe it is 2020! Yikes… it’s exciting to begin a new decade in the MP Library! But before I begin a new decade, year, and month, I’d like to recap Fall 2019. Below you will find a summary of what each grade level did in the library during the months of September, October, November, and December.
First Grade – First graders read books about learning to read, such as Rocket Learns to Read and Rocket Writes a Story by Tad Hills, How to Teach a Slug to Read by Susan Pearson, and How to Read a Book by Kate Messner. I also introduced the classes to my dog, Poppy, who is a German Shorthair Pointer full of mischief, sweetness, and love. I shared videos and photos of Poppy. The classes helped me to write stories about her. Then it was the students’ turn to write and illustrate their own stories in blank books.
Second Grade – Second graders started the year with Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg, a book of accidents that weren’t really accidents. Students learned to look at these accidents or mistakes as opportunities to learn and grow. Students turned some “mistakes” into their own beautiful oops. You can see them on the library website under Student Media Projects.
We also completed a unit on trickster tales. Students learned what makes a story a trickster tale – characters that trick others for fun, to help themselves, and sometimes to help others. Tricksters are mischievous and clever. Trickster tales come from all over the world. Trickster tales we read include several Anansi stories from West Africa, Jabuti the Tortoise from the Amazon Rain Forest, and Papagayo the Parrot from Central America, Love and Roast Chicken from the Andes Mountains of South America, and My Lucky Day. We completed word sorts with these stories.
Third Grade – Third graders started the year by reading The Dot Trilogy by Peter Reynolds, which includes The Dot, Ish, and Sky Color. The big ideas of the books are being creative, expressing ourselves, not trying to be perfect, and making our marks. We finished the unit by making our marks and displaying them in the library. You can see them on the library website under Student Media Projects.
Our second unit was reading a chapter book together: 8 Class Pets + 1 Squirrel ÷ 1 Dog = CHAOS by Vivian Vande Velde. The story follows one squirrel through an elementary school as he tries to avoid capture by the principal’s dog. Mayhem ensues! While reading the book, we learned about characters’ actions and cause and effect.
We finished out the first months of the year by researching the different animals that appeared in the book: dog, squirrel, owl, snake, rabbit, box turtle, rat, parrot, gecko, tetras, and hamster. Students chose animals and read nonfiction books to learn about actions, habitats, diets, and adaptations.
First, Second, and Third Grades – Throughout the fall, primary grades participated in the Washington Children’s Choice Picture Book Award program. Classroom teachers and librarian read many of the 20 nominees to students. We will finish up with the program in late January. Students will vote for their favorite books in order to help choose both the MP and state winners.
Fourth Grade – Fourth graders (and students in third-fourth grade classes) started the year with a challenge to build a structure out of gumdrops and toothpicks that would support one or more library books. The purpose of this activity was to build perseverance, working together and problem-solving ways to make the structures work. We read or reviewed the book, The Most Magnificent Thing, by Ashley Spires to remind ourselves that we are capable of facing challenges.
As a class, we read Avalanche Dog Heroes by Elizabeth Rusch, one of the Towner Award nominees, and then researched topics related to the book: avalanches, search and rescue dogs, the Cascade Mountains, and different breeds of dogs.
Fifth Grade – Depending upon the class, fifth graders learned more about different genres of literature – fantasy, science fiction, and realistic fiction. Some classes learned about Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer, and algorithms, and then created their own algorithms for building Lego structures. Other classes completed a robotics unit by programming Ozobots to perform speed, turns, and cool moves.
Sixth Grade – Depending upon the class, sixth graders learned about elements of historical fiction and realistic fiction, read short stories and studied the elements of them, and/or learned informational note-taking skills.
Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Grades - Throughout the fall, intermediate grades participated in the Sasquatch Fiction Book Award program and the Towner Nonfiction Book Award program. Students who have read at least two books per program are invited to vote for their favorites in the spring.
During winter and spring of 2020, we will be incorporating Maker Space, robotics, and technology into our library lessons. I cannot wait!
December 2019 News from the Library
Greetings M. P. Families,
One-Day-Wonder Scholastic Book Fair
Thank you for supporting our One-Day-Only Scholastic Book Fair on December 3rd. It was both fun and successful. We will purchase great new books for the library with the funds raised.
I’d like to thank all of the volunteers who helped to make the book fair a success: Alex Hart, Correne Saunders, Whitney Hardie, Wei-Ping Lin, Beza Misgana, Sue Puraficacion, Phyllis DeShazo, Meridith Richardi, AnneMarie Kuhnau, Breanna Clouse, Elizabeth Swan, Charla Martin, Briana Bell, Anna Nordstrom, Bethany Gipson, Carolina Hernandez, Amy Duncan, Zoryana ALeksenko, Mae Cramer, and Elspeth Cramer.
Shoreline Foundation Grant
Maggie Cramer, the kindergarten librarian, I are so grateful to the Shoreline Public Schools Foundation for funding three days with author-illustrator Dana Sullivan. Over his three days with us, Dana will meet with all MP kindergarten through sixth grade students in 11 assemblies. Dana will share techniques and ideas for creating characters and stories. We are so excited for Dana’s visit on February 25th, 26th, and 27th. Funds from our very own PTSA will also be used to pay for Dana’s visit.
MP’s Own eBook Library
We have had our own eBook library for a couple of years now. One of the great things about the eBook library is that all of the books are available to all students 24/7. There’s no check out process, and there’s no due date. An entire class can read the same book at the same time.
Please visit the library by following this link: http://www.mycapstonelibrary.com/login/index.html
Login with Capstone Interactive.
Our username is mpark.
Our password is school.
Best wishes for a beautiful holiday season,
Jenny Hillger, Teacher-Librarian
Greetings from the Meridian Park Library Media Center!
Welcome to the 2018 – 2019 school year in the Meridian Park Library! With over 750 students this year, we are going to busy reading, checking out many fabulous books, and learning how to access and use information in the 21st century! As a matter of fact, 31 classes will visit the library every week! With so many classes, we have two librarians this year. I am so excited to have Maggie Cramer as the kindergarten librarian this year. Mrs. Cramer has a great love of reading and children’s literature.
Please welcome Jake Kreutzer as our new library technician. He will be with us this fall while Sarah McElligott completes her elementary teaching internship at Echo Lake Elementary. Mr. K brings a great deal of experience to the position. His first career was in computer science, and his second career was in law.
Nitty Gritty Information
In addition to visiting the library with their classes, students may visit on their own as their class schedules allow during the week. There is no student supervision in the library before school begins in the morning. Therefore, students may come to the library at 9:00 in the morning to return books or check out new ones before heading off to the classes.
After school, students may stop by the library to return or renew library books or check out new books. However, there is no student supervision in the library after school, so children are not allowed to stay in the library while they wait for parents to pick them up.
Parents are welcome to stay with their children in the library before and after school.
Parents can also check out books from the MP library. Please stop by at any time to set up accounts for yourselves.
As I do every year, I will run the Sasquatch and Young Readers Choice (YRC) chapter book award programs for fourth, fifth, and sixth graders, and the Washington Children’s Choice Picture Book (WCCPB) award program for kindergarten, first, second, and third graders. Stay tuned for more information about these programs in upcoming newsletters, as well as on the library website.
We will have a one-day-wonder Scholastic Fall Book Fair on Tuesday, December 3rd. This year’s theme is “Arctic Adventure Book Fair”
The Book Fair will run during the school day as well as the evening along with PTSA’s monthly meeting. Students will have a chance to preview the Book Fair on Monday, December 2nd. It will be a fun event for everyone. The previous four years’ one-day book fairs were huge successes, as well as a lot of fun. Book fair profits benefit all MP students through the purchase of new books and the support of author visits and other literacy events.
If you would like to help out at the book fair by volunteering a few hours of your time, please let me know. My contact information is 206.393.4125 and email@example.com.
The Library Staff
Jenny Hillger, Teacher~Librarian, First – Sixth Grades
This is my 16th year in the Meridian Park library, the best place in the whole school! I am so lucky to know and work with every single MP student. My greatest joys come from introducing students to new books, authors, and genres of literature, as well as helping students learn how to use information and research their favorite topics. I am a huge fan of Greek mythology, as well as legends, fairy tales, mysteries, adventures, fantasies, historical fiction, and poetry. I also love books that make me laugh. Mo Willems, Patricia Wrede, Carl Hiaasen, Jennifer Holm, Avi, Rick Riordan, Ben Clanton, Bob Shea, Richard Peck, and Patricia Polacco are just a few of my favorite authors.
Maggie Cramer, Teacher-Librarian, Kindergarten
Maggie is in her third year as the kindergarten program at Meridian Park. Maggie loves to read and teach, and has great knowledge and experience developing and implementing curriculum programs. We are so happy she is back with us this year.
Jake Kreutzer, Library Technician
We could not run the library without an amazing library technician. Jake Kreutzer, our newest library team member, is here this fall, filling in for Sarah McElligott
What are MakerSpaces? A MakerSpace is a place where students (or adults) can gather to brainstorm, design, experiment, and create things. Sometimes a MakerSpace emphasizes computer programming, engineering, science, and mathematics. The big idea is people coming together to work together and support one another as they use their imagination and skills to make things. Over the past three years, we have built up our MakerSpace program through generous grants from MP PTSA and the Shoreline Foundation. With grant funds, we hae purchased Ozobots, circuitry materials, cardboard creation materials, and many different kinds of building materials. We are always looking for Legos and other kinds of building materials. If you have extra Legos, PlayMags, Tinkertoys,Lincoln Logs, etc., that you no longer use, please consider donating them to the library.
If you have questions about the library, would like to set up your own library account, or would like to learn about our online library catalog, please stop by the library before or after school.
Jenny Hillger, MP Teacher~Librarian