24 Feb 2016

One School, One Book: Show Way and Brown Girl Dreaming

Many students, teachers and parents across our ASD community are reading Jacqueline Woodson’s 2014 National Book Award winner, Brown Girl Dreaming in a school-wide reading event, One School, One Book. In addition, we are celebrating Woodson's Newbery Honor picture book, Show Way, as a supplemental reading experience including even our youngest readers.

One School, One Book is a program designed to create a shared reading experience. The goals are to celebrate literacy, build community and encourage intergenerational conversation about great books. We are building up to our upcoming Visiting Authors program, March 13-24, with both Jacqueline Woodson and Steve Jenkins joining us as authors in residence.

Brown Girl Dreaming, recipient of the Newbery Honor and Coretta Scott King Award as well as the National Book Award for 2014, tells the story of Jacqueline's childhood in verse. Raised in South Carolina and New York, she shares a poetic memoir of growing up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Jacqueline reflects on finding her voice through writing stories, despite struggling with reading as a child.

Show Way is also based on Jacqueline's family history. "Show Ways”, or quilts, once served as secret maps for freedom-seeking slaves. This is the story of seven generations of girls and women who were quilters, artists, storytellers and freedom fighters.

The libraries have multiple copies of Brown Girl Dreaming and Show Way for check out and for sale. Why not watch the Weston Woods version of Show Way with Jacqueline Woodson reading her own story?

See the link to BookFlix below. Remember ASD Libraries subscribe to BookFlix, so the usual login and password apply. See the eResources page for a reminder.

3 Feb 2016

Visiting Authors Coming Soon

Excitement is starting to build in our library as we get ready for our long-anticipated Visiting Authors celebration from March 13-24. Jacqueline Woodson and Steve Jenkins will soon be joining our community of readers and we can't wait! All of our students from K1-Grade 12, faculty, staff and parents will have the opportunity to learn from these amazing storytellers. Our elementary students are already busy reading their books in classrooms and in the library.

All of our Grade 5 students are currently reading Brown Girl Dreaming, actively participating in our One School, One Book experience. Students are engaging in meaningful discussions as they learn about Woodson's childhood through her memorable verse. In library class, students are digging in deep to specific poems in the book and comparing multiple picture books by Woodson. Grade 4 will begin Brown Girl Dreaming later this month.

Students in our lower grades have been pouring over the mesmerizing pages of Steve Jenkins vast collection of science books. Students have read several books in small groups, shared fascinating facts and found common, unique features and techniques in the books. Students in Grades 2-4 are also writing book reviews in Destiny Quest on their favorite Jenkins books.

Make sure you are ready for our authors' visit by reading as many books as you can! Please see one of the librarians to discuss how you can participate in One School, One Book by reading Show Way and Brown Girl Dreaming.

Check out these cool videos to learn more about our authors:

Watch Steve Jenkins process for researching, planning and creating his amazing animal illustrations out of cut paper collage.

Listen to Jacqueline Woodson talk about her thinking behind Brown Girl Dreaming and some discoveries she made about her family as she researched her past.

Purchase Books for Author Signing

We will have a wide range of Woodson and Jenkins books for sale in both libraries starting from Sunday, February 21. Prices range from AED 25 - 100 and both hardback and paperback books are available. You may purchase your books from library staff throughout the day. You may choose to label the book with your name and grade level and we will have the books signed by our visiting authors. We will then deliver the books to students' classrooms.

Keep in mind, our supply of books for sale is limited. If you really want a book, don't delay! You are also welcome to purchase books elsewhere and then bring them to the library to label and have signed. We will accept signing requests up until March 17.

2 Feb 2016

InFlow Inquiry Process Gets a New Look

Whether it’s Social Studies research, information writing or a Science investigation, ASD students and teachers continue to apply the Information Flow Inquiry Process to their learning experiences. Over the past year, we have been developing our common language and practice of inquiry using InFlow as a school.

ASD K-12 Libraries are excited to reveal our new InFlow logo and poster design. The puzzle pieces represent the interconnected nature of the InFlow elements. Each piece of the puzzle can be connected in any order and can be repeated. Students build the big picture of their individual process. They are discovering that the picture of their learning process look different depending on the task.

Building on the original work of Sarah McNicol who developed the InFlow model, our library team saw the need to add a new element, “connect,” to the process to capture the way students synthesize information and connect to prior knowledge to create new understanding. 

Special thanks go to Ms. Margaret, our ES Library instructional assistant, who designed the new look for InFlow. The library team is proud to report that we now have a Creative Commons Attribution License for InFlow. Under the license, other schools can use, adapt and share further work with InFlow.

Students Librarians: Leading and Learning

The first semester set a record for our Student Librarian numbers - 43 students from Grades Four and Five volunteered their time to work in the Elementary Library. Their total work came to 250 hours over the semester!

After a series of training sessions, the Student Librarians worked on a wide range of jobs. The responsibilities included learning to shelve, front facing books, cleaning returned books, deleting unwanted books from the circulation system and helping to manage the circulation desk. Some small groups started special projects such as developing an interactive read aloud and puppet show for our younger students and creating signs for book displays.

The Student Librarians are engaged in their library work before school, during recess times and after school at a time that works with each individual's schedule. In many cases their work as Student Librarians offers them the real world experiences of responding to requests, solving problems, assisting others and providing a service to a larger community.

Their service to the school sets an example for all of our students and truly embodies the ideals of our student profile by offering students an opportunity to build their skills as both leaders and contributors. Not to mention thinkers, communicators and learners.

Many of our Student Librarians have taken on leadership roles during their library class time as well. They assist students in finding books and lead by example by treating the library with respect and sharing their passion for books with their classmates. Their enthusiasm is contagious! Often our student librarians are excellent sources for recommending the next great book to read to their friends.

We are proud of the service that these students have given to ASD and to their library. During the second semester, we are excited to continue with many retuning students and some new recruits! Keep up the amazing work, team!