First Grade’s Fun Skype with Crabtree Co-creator, Jon Nichols

IMG_3166Our community amazes me.  Every year, new people within our school community step forward with ideas for our library program.  People share their talents, their connections, and their love of education.

This year, Rachel Gabara, a parent of a 1st grader, introduced me to a new book called Crabtree by brothers Jon and Tucker Nichols.  I’ll admit that it was my first time hearing of the book, but when I looked at the praise for Crabtree on the McSweeney’s website, I was floored.  Authors like Jon Klassen, Maira Kalman, Lemony Snickett, and Jon Agee all raved about the book.  I immediately ordered it from Avid Bookshop.  When I got it, I was raving about the book as much as the reviews.  It is jam packed with illustrations of all kinds of things.

Here’s the official trailer:

Crabtree loves to collect things.  The problem is that he has so much stuff he can’t find anything.  He begins to organize his collections of stuff in order to find his false teeth.  Each object on the page is labeled with its name, so kids are introduced to all kinds of tools and gadgets that they’ve probably never heard of.  It’s a great books just for the sorting, vocabulary, and potential research opportunities.  However, the humor and gadgets of the book are what really make it so much fun to read over and over again.  Even the dust jacket of the book has a collection of gadgets and unfolds into a poster.  At the end of the book, there’s a game where you can go back through the book finding various objects.  You need to order a copy of this book today.  It’s so much fun.

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When Rachel introduced me to the book, she told me that she was friends with the co-creator, Jon Nichols.  She offered to reach out to him to see if he would Skype with us.  He agreed, so we got to work preparing for our visit.  All of the 1st grade classes read the book in advance and pulled in some categorizing and math standards along the way.  Students also spent some time writing out questions for Jon.

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Today, the whole 1st grade came to the library and we connected with Jon in California.  He was a fantastic Skype author full of energy.  He told the kids a bit about how he and his brother made the book together.  Both of them were involved in the writing and illustrating process, and it was their first book.

Then, Jon showed the kids how he draws Crabtree.

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The students loved it when Jon let them ask him some questions.  When authors do this, the teachers help me a lot.  They start choosing students from the audience to start forming a line to the side of the screen and camera.

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As they get in line, we try to check to make sure the questions are all different and are actually questions.  I move the camera down to student-level.  Then, students take turns speaking to the author directly into the camera.

Today, students asked Jon questions like:

  • What kind of paint did you use?  He showed us the pens used to draw the illustrations and we learned that the colors were created by computer at the publisher because they didn’t like how real paint looked on the paper.

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  • Why did you call him Crabtree?  We learned that it was a mixture of a favorite place to visit but also the idea of 2 things that don’t really go together: crabs and trees.
  • Can 1st graders write books?  Jon was so enthusiastic in his answer and told them that they could absolutely write books.  He ran through the whole writing process and got them excited about their ideas for stories.

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There were many more wonderful questions.  I was really surprised by how well 1st graders asked questions.  The teachers did a wonderful job giving students time to think and write their questions down before they came.

We are so thankful to Jon for taking time out of his busy day to connect with us.  If you haven’t read Crabtree yet, we highly recommend it.

 

Our Student Book Budget Order from Capstone Has Arrived!

IMG_3014Each year when students participate in the student book budget group, the most exciting day for them is the day that we unpack the boxes when they arrive.  It’s the day that all of their hard work and tough decisions pays off.  After surveying almost the entire school, setting goals, meeting with vendors, creating wish lists, cutting books from the lists to fit the budget, and placing the order, the students finally get to hold books  in their hands.

Today our order from Capstone came.  We love buying books from Capstone each year for many reasons.  One reason is that their books are popular with our students.  We also love their customer service.  Our sales representative, Jim Boon, always comes in and helps students with the book selection process.  We also love how Capstone stretches our budget.  This year’s order from Capstone was $1750, and with Capstone’s current promotion, we earned an additional $525 in books.  When we were unpacking the order today, a student said, “Capstone Rewards sure does help us get a lot of extra books.”  I love that this project really pushes students each year to think about fiscal responsibility and how to stretch a dollar.

Just like every other step of the way, the students are involved in every step of unpacking the books.  We basically form an assembly line.

Some students pull books out of the boxes and inspect them for any damage.  There’s usually not any, but we always check.

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Another student takes these books and highlights each one on the packing slip to make sure they are all accounted for.  Today, I helped with the highlighting process because there were so many books to take through the entire process in only 45 minutes.

These books then go to a student who stamps them with our library stamp.

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From there, a group of students takes pictures of the covers to put into an Animoto to show on our morning broadcast.

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When all pictures are taken, the pictures are uploaded to Animoto by another group of students.

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Then, all of the students work on setting up a display at the front of the library.

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The students all got to check out one of the books before they were really revealed to the rest of the school.

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Then they watched their Animoto and had a little dance party to celebrate new books.

Usually, students start coming in to check out the books before we even get them all setup.  Today was no different.  Some of the DC comics and sports immediately got checked out by 2 eager boys.  I love how one student’s shirt says, “best day ever”.  It sure feels like a great day when we see so many smiling faces for books.

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It was also a little sad to see our project for the year come to an end.  These students have been so dedicated by coming in during their recess time to work.  I smiled when one of them said, “I think I want to grow up to become a library media specialist”.  Other students said, “Please let us do this again next year.”

When I asked them why they like being in the student book budget group, they said things like:

  • who wouldn’t want to buy books for the library
  • we loved making decisions
  • it was fun to spend money for the library
  • people are reading the books that we chose

This process is so empowering for students.  The project has proven again and again that students know how to buy books for other students.  Their books are checked out rapidly and stay among the most popular books in the library.

Thank you Capstone for supporting our project each year.  Your promotions, great selection of high interest books, and book swag gifts, made the students feel like rock stars.

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Unpacking Our Student Book Budget Order from Gumdrop

IMG_2827Today, the student book budget group came to the library to unpack our first order.  Most of our books that we ordered will come from Capstone, but there were a few books that they found from Gumdrop.  Gret Hechenbleikner is our Gumdrop rep who brought in several book samples for students to look at.  One of our goals for purchasing books was World Records.  We have several Guinness World Record books, but Gumdrop had some Ripley’s books that were much smaller in size that the students loved.  They also found some haunted history books that I’m sure will be extremely popular.  We are trying to increase the number of books we have about making things, so they found a series of books about making graphic novels as well as making crafts out of various materials.

To save a bit of money, we did not purchase shelf ready books.  We did order the barcodes and protectors, though.  Students came in during their recess and worked through several steps.

Step 1 was to unpack the box, check off the packing slip, and check the books for damage.

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Step 2 was to put the labels and label protectors on each book.

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Step 3 was stamping each book with our library stamp.

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Step 4 was to download the MARC records into Destiny.

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Step 5 was to think of how to advertise the books to the school.  Students decided on 2 things.  They wanted an Animoto of all of the books and the unpacking process on our morning news show for Monday.  They also wanted to create a display at the front of the library.  One group of students worked on taking pictures.  Another group worked on making the Animoto.  A final group worked on creating the display.

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It was fun to watch them celebrate when their Animoto was made.

The books haven’t even been officially advertised to the school yet, and already several of the books have been checked out.  I won’t be surprised on Monday when there is a stampede to the library to check out what is left.

These students will meet again next Friday, when they will unpack a large order from Capstone and repeat the same process.

Kindergarten Blokify Creations Becoming Reality with Makerbot

blokify printing (1)Today, Mrs. Kelly Hocking brought her Kindergarten class to the library to begin 3D printing their creations that they made with the Blokify app on iPad.  It has been a few weeks since they made their creations.  After they left the creating session, 5th graders helped email all of the files to me.  We put them into Makerware, made them smaller, and sliced the files for 3D printing.  All of the files went onto the SD card to be ready to print.

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Today, they all sat in front of the 3D printer.  We spent some time talking about what a 3D printer is and looked at some of the creations it had made.  We also talked about the safety of not touching the printer while it is printing due to the heat and the fact that bumping the printer could mess up the print.

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Finally, we cued up a file on the screen and the student came up to press the M to start the print.

They loved watching the build plate raise to the top.  There were even oohs and ahhhs as the printer was heating.  Once the printing started, we let one student at a time come up to peek inside and see what 3D printing looks like.  They were all amazed.

Mrs. Hocking is working with all of these students to stretch their imaginations.  They are going on a virtual field trip to Boston over the next few weeks and along the way they are virtually stopping in each state and learning something about that state along the way.  For example, next week we will read the book Suryia and Roscoe: The True Story of an Unlikely Friendship and visit the sanctuary where they live in Myrtle Beach South Carolina.  Mrs. Hocking is having the class imagine packing a virtual suitcase that they can put anything in.  Today, they want to add the Makerbot to their suitcase.

These students are also planning out imaginary gardens in their minds.  Their Blokify creations will eventually find a spot in those imaginary gardens and students will imagine what it’s like to go inside of their Blokify creations.  They will create art and stories to accompany these 3D printed sculptures in their imaginary gardens.  I always love the imagination and creativity that Mrs. Hocking brings to life in her classroom.

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Over the next few days, the Blokify creations will continue to be printed until all 21 are done.  Then, the imagination and creating of stories will begin.

 

Honoring Student Voices through Student Book Budgets with Capstone Press

Student Book Survey 2013 2014For the past several years, I have reserved a portion of our library funding to be completely controlled by students.  Over time, I’ve seen student-selected books be among some of the most popular books in the collection.  The library collection is mainly for our students, so why not let their voice be heard in the collection development process.  Part of our library funding comes from the state, and another part comes from fundraisers such as our fall and spring book fair.  Since students and their families shop at our book fairs to build their home libraries while supporting our school library, I see student book budgets as being one small way of giving back to our community.

This year, our book budget process has gone through some changes.  In order to involve a few more students at various stages, I broke the process into parts.  Part 1 was to gather data from the school.  Every Tuesday and Thursday I have a group of five 5th grade boys who work in the library as a service project.  Together, we developed a Google form to gather information from the school.  We wanted to track the number of students we surveyed at each grade level, the number of boys and girls, specific reading interests, and specific requests.

Once the survey was created, we generated a QR code so that they could quickly scan the code and go out into the school to survey students with iPads.  This was mainly needed with our youngest students.  For older students, I emailed the survey to them to fill out.

Each year, we tend to see similar results with our data, but I told the students that we can’t assume that we know what people are wanting in the library because it can change.  Here’s a look at the main data they collected.

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Next, I blocked off some library time during 4th and 5th grade’s recess time and asked for students who would like to participate in an alternative recess for a few days to spend money on books.  I’ve tried doing this during lunch and it is just too complicated to juggle food, catalogs, vendor websites, etc.  I didn’t get as big of a response from students this year, so we’ll see if we return to this model next year.

On day 1, the 4th and 5th grade book budget students came to look at the survey results.  They made some decisions to inform how much money should be dedicated to various categories.  I printed the specific requests of students and Savannah and Isaiah spent time highlighting some specific titles that students were asking for.  It was a tedious process for them!  The even got down to searching the library catalog to see how many copies of books we had like Diary of a Wimpy Kid and discussing if there was justification to order even more copies of existing titles.  We finally all agreed on some overall categories of:  Comics/Graphic novels, sports, humor, scary, world records, and action/adventure.

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Even on this 1st day, they started having some tough conversation.  For example, they saw that World Records was a highly requested category, but from experience, they know that students are mostly talking about Guinness World Records.  They decided that instead of dividing the budget and giving this category several hundred dollars, they would just buy 2 new copies of the 2014 World Records for about $60.  It’s always fascinating to see how quickly students realize how a budget works and how hard it is to make decisions for the library.  One of them said, “Mr. Plemmons, I know this is only a small part of your job, but it sure is hard!”

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On day 2, we welcomed Jim Boon, Capstone Press Sales Rep.  I love working with Jim because he treats the students like young professionals.  I also love that Jim listens to what students are asking for and tailors his talk and display to the goals that they have.  He setup displays of books that matched their goal categories with a few books that connected to their themes in different ways.  He gave every student a new Capstone catalog and a pen.  As he proceeded to show students various books, he invited students to turn through the catalog, circle books of interest, and fold down the corners of pages.  After he shared some specific books, students came up and started browsing through the books on display.  Jim and I proceeded to have individual conversations with students about the books in the catalogs and help them see where prices could be found.  We also mentioned to students that Capstone offers Capstone Rewards and various incentives.  For example, if we spend $1750 on our order, we get 30% back in Capstone Rewards, but if we spend less than that we get 10% back.  I love the math that comes into this project each year because it is real world application of an important life skill.

I also love that in our individual conversations there are stories that emerge.  Jim had a great conversation with one of our students, Ember.  She consistently asked Jim about the prices of every book.  The budget was weighing heavy on her mind and she was thinking hard about how to get the most books for our money.  In their conversations, there were a few books that Ember desperately wanted in our collection, and I loved that Jim made sure to leave one of those books that she requested for us to add to our collection!  I know Ember will greatly appreciate it.

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Students were having so much fun that they decided to take their catalogs with them to continue marking titles of interest.  I’m a little scared of seeing what they come back with!  It’s such a hard process to cross books off of the wish list, but it is an important process to choose the very best books for our collection at the current time with the funds that we have.

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This process is beneficial to me as the librarian too because I get to see books that students are getting excited about.  For the purposes of the project, I remind students to focus on their goals and only purchase what matches the requests.  However, I’m over to the side writing down titles to put on my own ordering list for this year or the beginning of next year knowing that the titles already have a group of readers waiting on them.

Thank you to Capstone Press for your tremendous customer service, your professional relationship with all of your users including students, and for giving our students a voice in collection development.  You are superstars!

Our next step will be to look at one more vendor to fill in some holes in our wish list, and the we will start the tedious process of cutting books from our list until we have our final order.

 

Beta Testing with Wandoo Planet and Evanced Kids

Wandoo (7)Today a group of 5th grade boys Skyped with Lindsey Hill of Evanced Kids.  Recently, Matthew Winner posted on his blog about a beta testing opportunity for Wandoo Planet, a kids’ interest genome project.  I signed up to be a beta tester and it wasn’t long before I got an email inviting me to join.

I tried out the product myself and had a lot of fun clicking on the fun little characters carrying signs with words of interest.  I could give a thumbs up, thumbs down, or a heart to each sign.  This helped the program start finding other topics I might like.  When I reached a point where I felt done, the program took me to a tree with branches for each of my love categories.  Within these categories were suggested books and movies I might read or watch.  If I saw a book I knew I wouldn’t like, I could delete it so that it could be replaced by other books.  I also learned that I could add additional branches to my tree.

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This week, my tech crew of 5th grade boys tried out Wandoo Planet for themselves.  I tweeted a picture of their beta test and immediately started having a conversation with Lindsey Hill at Evanced Games.  She wanted to hear their thoughts, so we set up a time to connect.

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After some quick introductions, the boys launched right into talking about what they liked and what they wished or wondered.  The boys talked about:

  • Being able to search for specific topics rather than wait on the animals to bring the topics to them
  • Trying to cut down the time it takes to build your tree
  • Wondering which age groups the product would actually be for
  • Wondering how topics are suggested to them.
  • Wanting mini games within the program.  Educational mini games that tie to the book topics that are suggested.
  • Wanting more choices to choose from
  • Wanting to start with broader topics and narrow down to specific
  • Wanting the tool to be available on the computer, iTuness, and Google Play
  • Wanting music and sounds

The boys found out that several of their ideas and suggestions are already being worked on, but aren’t yet available in the beta version.  I loved that these students experienced the idea of a “rough draft” from their writing classrooms and how those rough drafts are being revised several times.  I want to help them make that connection more when we meet again on Tuesday.  This was a great real world example that revision impacts more than just writing a paper for class.  It’s a big part of many of our careers.

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The powerful piece in this is that these students’ voices were heard.  Lindsey told them that every comment they made was going to be carried to the developers to improve Wandoo Planet for future users of the tool.  I am really excited about this tool because I think it is one more piece to help students discover their interests, connect to books/games/movies/sites that support those interests, and more.  As a librarian, I see this being a way to give students ideas for growing the collection to include things that matter to them.

This group is going to continue to use Wandoo Planet on Tuesday and then reconnect with Lindsey on Wednesday of next week along with Shannon Miller and her students in Van Meter, Iowa.  We can’t wait!

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A Flipgrid Celebration with 2nd Grade and the Flipgrid Team

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Our 2nd graders just wrapped up a huge research project.  During the project, they chose a leader from black history, researched that person, wrote a short persuasive piece about their person, designed a US postage stamp, and recorded a video using Flipgrid.  Their videos were pulled together on a Smore which included a Google Form for people to vote on their favorite leader from black history to be featured on a postage stamp.   Read more about our project:

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Along the way, the students had several connections to an authentic audience.  They started the voting portion of the project by sharing at our schoolwide assembly.  Students stood in front of the entire school and told about the project as well as shared a video from each question of the grid.  The Smore was emailed to every teacher and student in the school.

I also shared the Smore on Twitter and our library Facebook page.

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Shawna Ford, librarian in Weatherford Texas, saw my tweet and had her 2nd grade students view the project.

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As the project continued, my posts and tweets were shared and retweeted until our Smore had 480 views and counting.

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Our project was viewed in 161 locations and counting.

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Throughout the project, Charles Miller and Bradford Hosack, our friends at Flipgrid, were following along and sharing our work as well.  It has been an incredible experience for students to use a tool, encounter success and frustrations, and be able to offer feedback to developers that respond to that feedback.  The Flipgrid team has been so responsive to all of the feedback we have provided to them, and they consistently work on Flipgrid to make it better.

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Today, our 2nd graders came together in the library to connect with the Flipgrid team via Skype.  The team shared information about how Flipgrid was developed and talked to the kids about coding.  All of the 2nd graders had background in this concept because they all participated in the Hour of Code back in December.  I loved how the Flipgrid team reiterated what I had told the students many times.  You have to work through the frustration.  You have to be willing to fail and learn from your failures to make things better.  The team said more than one time that they wanted to create a tool that works for users, so they are constantly listening to users of Flipgrid to improve their product.  I hope that the students carry these ideas into all area of their lives to be willing to take risks and work hard at what they are passionate about.

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Charles and the Flipgrid team then gave us some stats about our videos.

  • 1875 people watched the student videos
  • 699 people clicked on the heart to like videos that the students made
  • students created 1 hr 15 minutes of video all together

During this presentation of facts, Charles reminded students that when they make a project like this and share it with the world it really is giving them a global voice.  I loved that he said this because it is something we strive for in our library:  giving students a global voice.

One of my favorite parts of our Skype was the awards.  We wanted to honor several students during this segment.  Because each video was “liked” by viewers of the video, I could easily see which videos had the most likes.  This became an award category.  We also had specific students who received shout-outs on Twitter because people watched the videos and cared enough to specifically name a student video that they loved.  Finally, we had some students who worked really hard to express themselves in their writing and persuade people to vote.  I created a certificate to use.

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After selecting all of the students, I sent a list of the awards to the Flipgrid team and they announced the winners via Skype.  It felt like the Academy Awards as the Flipgrid team cheered for students as I handed out the certificates, and it was amazing to hear the shouts and claps of all of the 2nd graders cheering on their peers.

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Mixed in with our connection the kids had a chance to ask the Flipgrid team questions.  I loved the moments where one student said “sometimes it doesn’t work” and another student said “I think you need to be able to turn up the volume for people who talk soft”.  These weren’t questions, but the Flipgrid team let the students know that because of their videos they were already thinking about volume and that they were working to make sure Flipgrid always worked for users.

During and after our Skype, the Flipgrid team and I shared several pictures from both sides of the Skype: Georgia & Minnesota.

We closed our time together by revealing the results of the overall voting for the favorite leader from black history to be on a postage stamp.  The votes were extremely close, but Rosa Parks came in just 1 vote ahead of Jesse Owens.  By this point, the kids were so excited about all that had happened with their project that the vote didn’t even seem to matter anymore.

Thank you to Charles Miller, Bradford Hosack, and the entire Flipgrid team for helping us celebrate this project today before we move on to our next adventures in the library.  Thank you!

 

Our Miraculous Start to 2014 with Flipgrid

miraculous flipgridIn the new year, I wrote a post about expecting the miraculous in 2014.  I can honestly say that the expression “Expect the Miraculous” has taken on a life of its own in our school.  Let me tell you how it happened.

To kickoff the second half of the year, we held a schoolwide assembly.  The purpose of the assembly was to review goal setting, celebrate our unique talents, and to give ourselves permission to have dreams.  It really was an amazing assembly.  We had student performances, a teacher who played her violin, a youtube video from Kid President, and Martin Luther King Jr contest winners.  The assembly was also a space for me to talk about expecting the miraculous.  I read the excerpt from Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures.

“All things are possible,” said Dr. Meescham.  ”When I was a girl in Blundermeecen, the miraculous happened every day.  Or every third day.  Actually, sometimes it did not happen at all, even on the third day.  But still, we expected it.  You see what I’m saying?  Even when it didn’t happen, we were expecting it.  We knew the miraculous would come.” ~Kate DiCamillo

I also shared synonyms for the word “miraculous” such as “extraordinary”.  Finally, I told my own story of expecting the miraculous.  My story involved our new 3D printer.  From the day I heard about 3D printers, I expected that one day our library would have one.  I wasn’t sure how or when, but I felt in my heart that this incredible piece of technology was something our students should have access to in school.  About a year ago, our district considered purchasing a 3D printer for our school.  It was all the way down to the ordering process, but something happened over the summer and it didn’t get order.  Still…..I expected the miraculous.  I wrote grants and began advertising the idea of purchasing a 3D printer.  I publicized that a portion of our book fair profits would go toward 3D printing.  However, this was a slow process and I knew it would take time to raise almost $3000 for a printer and supplies.  Still….I expected the miraculous.  Then, in October, Makerbot announced their partnership with Donors Choose.  I immediately submitted my project and hoped for the best knowing that much of the available funding would most likely go to Brooklyn schools.  Still…I expected the miraculous.  Miraculously, our printer was funded overnight!

This is the story that students heard.  I followed this with an invitation for them all to “Expect the Miraculous” with me.  To capture our goals, dreams, wishes, and expectations for 2014, I created a Flipgrid.  I gave them a quick tutorial on how to record a video into the Flipgrid by walking them through screenshots of the process.  Then, I setup a Flipgrid recording station in the library.

Flipgrid station Over the past 2 weeks, students have written about their hopes and dreams in class and visited the library to record.  It has been an amazing process to watch.  Goals have ranged from reading goals to behavior goals and from school-related to extra curricular related.  I encourage you to spend some time listening to their miraculous expectations and feel free to click the + and add your own.  Students have enjoyed coming into the library and listening the the videos on our touchscreen computer at the front of the library.  I can put the Flipgrid on slideshow and it flips through each video throughout the day.

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I’ve heard so many kids, families, and teachers using the word “miraculous” in conversations.  Some students have even recorded their videos at home with their family.  Our school embraced the phrase so much that we even put it outside on our sign.

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One more miraculous thing happened.  Kate DiCamillo posted an opportunity on her facebook page to ask questions about her books.  I asked, “What miraculous things have you expected that actually happened and what miraculous things are you still expecting?”  Here’s her reply!

Miraculous

3D Printing: A Huge Opportunity from Donors Choose and Makerbot

MakerBot News (MakerBotNews) on TwitterThose of you who know me know that I’ve been wanting a 3D printer in our library for awhile.  It seems that just when I think we’re about to get one, something happens that puts a barrier in our way.  This isn’t just about having cutting edge technology.  This is about allowing kids to experience another level of creating.  It’s about allowing kids to explore a technology that is possibly a piece of technology that we will all eventually have in our homes.  It’s about giving kids the power to dream something up, design it, print it, and  hold it in their hands.  It’s about bringing STEAM education to life for our students.  For these reasons, I haven’t given up hope that we will have a 3D printer in our library.  Recently, we started a conversation with UGA to partner with them and use the 3D printers that they have.  We are very grateful for this opportunity, but we know that if we truly want to have a 3D printer as a part of our daily resources available to students, then we need to have one in our building all the time.

Today, Makerbot announced a partnership with Donors Choose to put a 3D printer in every classroom.  This is a bold claim, but it is a step toward thinking that 3D printers aren’t just for colleges, public libraries, or industry.  Each time I’ve mentioned putting a 3D printer in an elementary library, I’ve been met with the “why” questions.  I’ve also been met by the “I can’t see elementary students doing that…” statements.  My philosophy that I have embraced since reading Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo is to “Expect the Miraculous”.  I have faith that if students have access to a cutting edge tool such as a 3D printer paired with expertise from mentors over Skype & Google Hangouts paired with expertise from our community who already use 3D printers, then miraculous things will happen for students.  I don’t have all of the answers of what this should look like in an elementary school, but someone has to be willing to step up and walk into the unknown and trust that students and multiple experts will learn together, figure things out, and shape how this technology can support what we do and hope to do in schools.

As soon as I saw the Donors Choose opportunity, I submitted a project.  By the end of the day, our project was approved and we already had a matching grant.  This match brought our project down to approximately $1500.  If what Makerbot says is true, as more donors donate to the project, other business and private donor contributions will fulfill this project.  Once again, I’m taking a leap of faith that this project will be filled for our school and we can begin exploring and leading the way for 3D printing in schools.   

Two donors have already contributed to our project along with our matching donation.  I invite you all to take a look at our project, consider donating, or at the very least, consider sharing our project with your circles.  Giving kids the opportunity to create, share, and contribute to the current conversation on 3D printing in education is a great gift to give, especially this time of year.

Makerspace Maniacs

 

 

Georgia COMO 2013 Keynote

keynote 2Today I had the opportunity to be the keynote speaker at the Georgia Council of Media Organizations Conference in Macon, GA.  My hope was to open the conference by inviting conference members to give themselves permission to imagine and dream possibilities for their programs.  I hope that today’s keynote sparked some conversations that will carry people through the 2 days of the conference and beyond.  Putting together these slides and presentation allowed me to spend a lot of time reflecting on my library program and the many participatory opportunities for the members of our library.  Thank you to Diane Grffin, COMO chair, for the invitation to speak.  

Many thanks to CCSD librarians Shannon Thompson and Shawn Hinger who sat at the front table and cheered me on.