News From the Library–Oct. 24, 2011

Web Drill!!

Mr. Orr’s fifth grade class practiced “escaping” from inappropriate websites this week.  After discussing 5 ways to get out of a website (thank you, Devan, for giving us a fifth way!), students browsed (appropriate) websites on our Skills Blog and then had to practice how to get out should that ever be necessary.  Although we have a internet filter here at school, it is important to give students the tools to be their own filters when at home or with friends.  I likened this to fire drills and earthquake drills and the need to practice so that responses will be automatic.  You can find our lesson on the Library Skills Blog.

Also in the Library this week….

Kindergarten–Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman was very appropriate for library this week as the kindergarteners were off to the Pumpkin Patch in the afternoon.  They loved the repetition in the story as the witch tries to harvest her huge pumpkin with the help of a ghost, a vampire, a mummy, and finally a little bat who has the best idea yet–cooperation.  Students used visible thinking routines to be word detectives, predict the plot, and understand the theme of the story.

First Grade--Halloween House also by Erica Silverman provided first graders with lots of chances to use their visible thinking skills.  After taking some time to observe the cover and title page, students made some great predictions about the story.  Then they discovered the rhymes, the reverse countdown, and  figured out lots of great words–like debris and askew–by being effective word detectives.  But best of all, they loved the story and are eagerly looking forward to Halloween!

Second Grade–One of my favorite Halloween read alouds is A Job for Wittilda by Caralyn and Mark Buehner.  Poor Wittilda has 38 cats and no job and she has to find something so she can feed all those cats.  After applying for many she finally lands the job delivering pizzas at Dingaling Pizza, but not before she has to make a hard decision about saving another cat.  This book has it all and worked wonderfully for visible thinking.  Students practiced plot prediction, looked for details, discussed the pros and cons of her decision to save the cat, and all this was done having fun listening to a great story.

Third Grade–One of our favorite third grade books is Miss Smith’s Incredible Storybook by Michael Garland and he has treated us for Halloween with Miss Smith’s Haunted Library.  Students practiced visible thinking skills by predicting what might happen when Zack and his class visit the town library and the librarian, Miss Virginia Creeper, reads scary stories.  We had lots of fun identifying characters from such stories as the Wizard of Oz, The Headless Horseman, Dracula, the House of the Baskervilles, and Alice in Wonderland.

Fourth Grade–Halloween Night by Marjorie Dennis Murray is based on The Night Before Christmas but with a decidedly spooky twist and students used visible thinking routines to find similarities and differences.  The illustrations by Brandon Dorman are spectacular and make this a wonderful book to read aloud to a group.

Fifth Grade–Mrs. Wooten’s class played Library Jeopardy this week and Mr. Orr’s class had a chance to do Web Drill.  (see opening post)

Sixth Grade–Sixth graders played Library Jeopardy this week, honing their understanding of how the library works, how to research, and how to use our catalog.

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