• Earth Day - Virtual Learning

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 4/24/2020 4:00:00 PM

    This week we celebrated Earth Day.  I think we are all starting to get the hang of virtual teaching and learning.  The hardest part of being a librarian during this pandemic is that I cannot put physical books into the hands of my students.  I pride myself in learning who my students are as readers.  It takes time, but I learn what their interests are, what type of books they gravitate towards, and what to recommend when they are stuck or need some inspiration.  I think most of us can agree that e-books are great in some aspects, but they never will replace physical books.  I miss the personalization of pairing books and students.  We are fortunate that so many e-book companies have made their databases free during the pandemic.  I've been sharing every e-book resource I can find!

    This week my library lessons focused on nature, Earth Day, conservation, and recycling.  Fourth grade students continued an author study started back in the fall with Chris Van Allsburg by reading Just a Dream.  it is a story about a boy who goes into the future and learns what may happen to our planet if we don't make good choices about recycling and littering.  Next, students used BrainPop as a resource to learn about human impacts on the environment.  We finished with a great grade level discussion about what we can do to help our planet.  Third grade students learned about differents styles of poetry and wrote a Haiku poem.  Second grade students went on a rainforest adventure with a fiction story and some research on a rainforest animal.  First graders had a fiction/nonfiction lesson about birds and created a bird craft.  Kindergarten students learned about Earth Day with a story, and then researched different types of plants.  Then they were challenged to take a nature walk and create a word made with objects they found from nature.  Take a look at this video to see some of the amazing creations from our lessons this week:  

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  • One Book One School

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 3/6/2020

    Thank you to everyone for participating in our first One Book One School reading event.  It was a huge success thanks to the commitment from our APT, teachers, parents, and students.  I revealed the One Book One School event to our students at an assembly on the first day of Read Across America week.  I had students and teachers from the audience represent the characters that were going to be in the book.  Students left the assembly and got to hear chapter one at school with their classmates.  Chapter two was read at home, and the pattern followed until we reached the end of the book on Friday.  I received the most wonderful family reading photos all week.  Every picture made me smile-whether students were reading with their parents, to their parents, with their siblings, or even with their fur babies.  All of the photos I received are hanging up in the library as a great reminder of how important it is to take time out of our busy days to read together.

     

    assembly characters audience

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  • Reptile Research

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 2/28/2020

    This week, K-2 students listened to the PA Reader's Choice Award nominated title, Joan Procter Dragon Doctor.  It is a biography about a British zoologist who loved reptiles.  After we discussed the book, students used Pebble Go to select a reptile to research.  Many students selected reptiles that Joan studied - komodo dragons, alligators, geckos, snakes, and more!  Students loved sharing facts with me and with each other about their reptile's body, habitat, food, and life cycle.  Many students selected a nonfiction reptile book to take home!

     

    komodo dragon sammi

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  • Virtual Reality Deep Sea Dive

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 2/21/2020

    This week we read the book, Flying Deep:  Climb Inside the Deep-Sea Submersible Alvin.  Students learned about the different layers of the ocean, and then used virtual reality to explore them.  We started in the mesopelagic (twilight) zone, where we saw bristle fish, cephalopods, swordfish, and pearlsides.  Next, we traveled deeper into the bathyal (midnight) zone and learned about the frill shark, gulper eel, sperm whales, and the vampire squid.  The abyssal zone had some of the most interesting creatures - angler fish, giant squid, and the black swallower fish!  We also learned about the "ocean snow" that we saw while we looked around.  The hadal zone was next, which is found within deep sea trenches below the floor of the ocean.  The last visit in our virtual reality field trip was the Mariana Trench, which is the deepest known part of the ocean on Earth.  We even got to see the Deepsea Challenger that reached the bottom of Challenger Deep in 2012.  It was a lot of fun, and all of my ocean and deep sea creature books got checked out!  Third grade students followed up on the lesson by doing a research project about a deep-sea creature and creating a "trading card" with their facts.  Kindergarten-2nd grade students will have a chance to vote for the 2020 PA Young Reader's Choice Award book in March.  Flying Deep:  A Climb inside the Deep Sea Submersible Alvin is a nominated title.

     

     

    1st grade VR

    VR

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  • PA Young Reader's Choice Award

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 2/13/2020 2:00:00 PM

    This week, students in kindergarten, first grade, and second grade were introduced to the 15 books that have been nominated for the Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award.  We read Baby Monkey, Private Eye by Brian Selznick and David Serlin.  192 pages may seem like a lot for a picture book, but we made it through with LOTS of laughs and predictions.  We will continue reading these nominated titles over the next few weeks in the library, and also pairing some of the nonfiction books with research lessons.  It would be wonderful for you to visit the public library and read some of these titles together at home!  K-2 students will vote on their favorite book next month and I will share the results with the state.  We can't wait to find out what book will win!

    pa choice award

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  • LOCKED in the LIBRARY!

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 2/7/2020 4:00:00 PM

    This week, our fourth graders participated in a WebQuest about the Dewey Decimal System.  Students were introduced to the WebQuest with exciting music and a premise that they fell asleep in the library and were locked in.  The only way to escape the library is to find the keys to the library doors.  Next, I explained the task:  students must discover answers both in the library and on the chromebooks using the online catalog to get clues.  The clues spell out where the keys are hidden.  This lesson is always a favorite.  I love hearing students telling each other how much fun they are having, and I give a lot of reminders about walking because they are so excited to find the answers to get the clues.  This lesson is a great reminder that any lesson topic can be fun, engaging, and motivating. 

     

    100th day key

     

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  • Classroom Response System

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 1/24/2020 1:00:00 PM

    This week many grade levels used a classroom response system as part of a check for understanding. Mr. Isselman sent an interesting article to the Lorane staff about how clickers work best when students have the opportunity to have discussions about the results from the clicker votes.

     

    The fourth graders used ActivExpressions to brush up on their reference skills.  We read the first few pages of Harry Potter and tried to decode a few words based on context clues.  Words we could not figure out we looked up in the dictionary.  Students were challenged to find words like tyke, chortle, peculiar, and craning.  When students found the entry for the word, they would type in a short definition for the word, the part of speech, or even the pronunciation to gain a better understanding of the parts of a dictionary entry and how they are utilized.  The students enjoyed each having their answer count toward a vote and the discussion after all answers were shared.

     

    Third grade students were engaged in a fun Who Wants to be a Millionaire game to learn about the thesaurus.  Students learned how utilizing a thesaurus can help their writing become more interesting and exciting by replacing overused words with interesting synonyms.  Using Activotes helped each student's engagement and ensured responsibility for answering the questions.  We reflected after each answer and had great discussions about the different choices that were selected as answers.  The music and sound effects  I added to my game really set the mood for an exciting class!

     

    Kindergarten has been doing an author/illustrator study about Jan Brett.  This week's lesson focused on character and setting.  After we read the book, students recalled the story to answer quetions.  This was their first time using clickers and their expressions say more than I can about their engagement!

    Kindergarten Clickers

    fourth activexpression

     

    3rd Grade thesaurus

    thesaurus teamwork

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  • A Winter Library

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 1/17/2020 4:00:00 PM

    The library is winter themed and ready for lessons about hibernation, polar mammals, Coretta Scott King award winning books, and research on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  

     olaf

    MLK research

    Coretta Scott King books winter blues

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  • Internet Safety / Digital Citizens

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 1/10/2020 4:00:00 PM

    We have officially completed our first full week back after winter break.  This week, K-4 students have been learning about online safety.   We had a lot of great discussions about how students use the internet and how to be a good digital citizen.  We covered topics like cyberbullying, private information, passwords, computer safety, online etiquette, online gaming, media balance, and online strangers.  

     

    Here are some tips from Common Sense Media for parents: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/video/advice/privacy-and-internet-safety

     

    Next week students in grades 2-4 will be showing what they learned by creating digital posters, educational comic strips, and Google Slides presentations.

     comic2 comic2 comic3

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  • Hour of Code

    Posted by Devon Tarewicz on 12/13/2019 4:00:00 PM

    This week kindergarten through third grade students participated in hour of code during their technology/research class.  The Hour of Code is a global movement reaching millions of students over 180 countries.  The objective is to introduce students to computer science and show that anybody can learn the basics of computer programming.  I began the lesson by sharing some great coding books our library has and giving a basic introduction to computer programming.  Our students had so much fun creating programs, learning loops, debugging programs, and more!  

    Hour of Code Video

     

    Code

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