Thursday, November 30, 2017

Staying Safe Online With Kindergarten Friends In This New Jersey School Library, Their Amazing Librarian Cheryl Bonsall and Cantata Learning!

I was so happy when my friend and fellow teacher librarian Cheryl Bonsall shared this on Twitter.  
She was sharing my new book Staying Safe Online with her kindergarteners in New Jersey. 
I just loved watching this video of them singing and doing hand motions to the song.  I hope you watch this too.  

Let me share a little more about this story and song.  

Staying Safe Online teaches our youngest learners all about the online world and what they need to know to stay safe online and be productive, engaging digital citizens.   
Not only will they learn along with the adorable animal characters created by illustrator Kathryn Durst, they will sing along with Emily Arrow, who wrote and sang the music for Staying Safe Online and the other three books in this series, 

Click above to listen to Staying Safe Online...

I just love how Emily took this story and made it into such a sweet and catchy tune for all of our young learners to sing as they learn how to stay safe online and practice their digital citizen skills.   

I know you will love it too!  
As you are singing along with your students, you will find the music.... 
...and lyrics in the back of the book and on the Cantata Learning site. 
You can also scan the QR codes, which is on the back of the book and inside the book, can be scanned to go to the music....
...on the Cantata Learning site too.  

The music can be streamed, download and there is even an instrumental version of Staying Safe Online too. 

You will find Staying Safe Online here
Staying Safe Online is perfect to use when teaching your students simple digital citizenship skills and as you kick off another year.  
Here is a lesson plan for this book and the entire Library Skills series. 

I hope you love reading and singing it just as much as I do.  
You will find it on the Capstone site here.  It is available as an eBook in Capstone Interactive too.  

I know you will love this one and all of the Library Skills series,  just like Cheryl's students do too!  

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Storyline Online Brings Celebrated Actors To Read Aloud To Your Students, Libraries and Communities

One of my favorite places to go and send young readers too is Storyline Online.  This site is filled with wonderful actors reading children's books paired with beautifully produced illustrations.
From the Storyline Online website....

The SAG-AFTRA Foundation’s award-winning children’s literacy website, Storyline Online, streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. Readers include Viola Davis, Chris Pine, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Costner, Annette Bening, James Earl Jones, Betty White and dozens more.
Storyline Online receives over 100 million views annually from children all over the world.
Reading aloud to children has been shown to improve reading, writing and communication skills, logical thinking and concentration, and general academic aptitude, as well as inspire a lifelong love of reading. Teachers use Storyline Online in their classrooms, and doctors and nurses play Storyline Online in children’s hospitals.
Storyline Online is available 24 hours a day for children, parents, caregivers and educators worldwide. Each book includes supplemental curriculum developed by a credentialed elementary educator, aiming to strengthen comprehension and verbal and written skills for English-language learners.
Storyline Online is a program of the SAG-AFTRA Foundation. The Foundation is a nonprofit organization that relies entirely on gifts, grants and donations to fund Storyline Online and produce all of its videos.
You can help the SAG-AFTRA Foundation create more Storyline Online videos and new content, so that we can read to millions more children every month. By giving a gift to Storyline Online, you can help advance children’s literacy, and improve children’s lives. Your support makes a world of difference.

Not only are there lots of amazing videos to share, 
Storyline Online is free for all of our readers, along with their teachers, librarians and families. 
Each story has a teacher guide that goes along with it.  
These can be found under the video by clicking Activity Guides. 
There is even a Storyline Online app for different devices too!  You can find out more here.

Thank you SAG-AFTRA Foundation and all of the amazing actors who have created these special Storyline Online videos for us.  We love your story telling and can't wait to see what is added next. 
And don't forget to click on Subscribe at the top of the site to stay informed with email updates and social media postings too.  

Create Polaroid-Like Images & More With Photo Notes!

I love finding digital tools and apps to use with my own photographs, those of family and friends, and the ones I find online.

When adding filters, effects and other fun things to photos, they can then be smashed into projects, social media shares, invitations and so much more!

Tonight when working on a new project, I needed to create one that looked like a Polaroid picture.  I usually use PicMonkey for this, but I couldn't resize it the way I wanted so I found Photo Notes, which let me resize it super quick.

As the site states, Photo Notes is a free service for generating Polaroid-like images and sending them to family and friends. 
You will find Photo Notes here.

You can choose an image they have, upload a photo from your computer or get a photo from the internet.
I uploaded an image of Brianna, Hagan and me.

Once it was uploaded, I could edit the Photo and Text.  
With the Text feature, we can choose the font, size, color and even change the location and rotation.  
There is also a little switch that lets you Flip the switch to draw!  
With the Draw feature, you can draw on top of your photo changing the color and brush size. 
 You can also choose from lots of different Frames, which you will find are seasonal too.
 Once you have your Photo Note ready, you can save and send it to yourself and others.
I really love how Photo Notes took my image and turned it into a cool Polaroid photo with text and holly.

This is one I will be adding to my tool box! I hope you do too. 

You will find Photo Notes here.

#CreateYourHype....Tracey Wong's New Post Celebrating Teacher Librarians

I am honored to be part of Tracey Wong's new article from October's Teacher Librarian, #CreateYourHype. 

You will find this on Tracey's amazing blog here.

Thank you Tracey for sharing my story and others inspiration too.  

Bring Augmented Reading Experiences To Your Students With Capstone's 4D!

There was something very exciting going on within the Capstone booth at the AASL Conference a few weeks ago!
Our friends at Capstone were showing all of us their amazing augmented reading experience product....Capstone 4D!  
Augmented reality or AR has become a popular way to deliver educational content.  It provides students with an enriched and creative learning experience that encourages retention, learning outcomes and the development of new skills and passions.

Augmented Reality (AR) content can be accessed by scanning or viewing a trigger image with a mobile device that creates a subsequent action. This action can be a video, another image, 3D Animations, Games, QR code, or whatever you want it to be.  

There are a variety of ways to bring AR to your library and classroom such as Chromville (which is one of my favorites), Quiver, Daqri and teachers can even create their own augmented reality educational content for students with AUGTHAT, which is perfect for differentiating instruction and driving student growth.  
And now our friends at Capstone have created a very special augmented READING experience for our students, libraries and classrooms too!  

Capstone 4D brings our readers an augmented reading experience through books. It blends the benefits of print books with bonus digital content to enhance learning and appeal to the YouTube generation. 
Readers can download the free Capstone 4D app to their favorite device from the Apple App Store or Google Play, or access through with a password found inside a 4D book, and see videos that relate to that book.
Currently students can experience Origami Crafting in 4D, 
which includes decorating, scrapbooking, ornaments and creating cards, and...
Curious Pearl Science Girl, where Pearl shares her excitement for STEM knowledge through four 4D books. 
The Curious Pearl series includes Curious Pearl Explains States of Matter, Curious Pearl Identifies the Reasons for Seasons, Curious Pearl Investigates Light and Curious Pearl Observes Migration.  

As the Capstone site explains, Curious Pearl, Science Girl is fun and quirky, and she's totally into science! Who says a girl can't love science? Pearl sure does, and she's out to tell everyone all about important STEM topics. 

With augmented reality features, readers will be able to scan sidebars and bring up videos to enhance their understanding of science topics.
With all of these books, it is very easy to launch and explore the augmented reality experience with Capstone 4D.
Watch this video and see how she creates origami while reading and interacting with the pages.  I can just picture this series in a Makerspace, which would be a terrific resource for creating something special and unique.

I love how the girl in the video is at home with the 4D book.  I know these would have been a favorite of my daughters to check out from the library as she created origami and learned about science too.

You can find the Curious Pearl 4D series here and Origami Crafting in 4D here on the Capstone site.

And one more exciting thing about Capstone 4D....This is just the start.
As Capstone's special press release about 4D states,

Capstone 4D spring releases are available for pre-order now on the publisher’s website. Books in the makerspace brand Dabble Lab will feature video content to help show how projects come together. 

New series will include: Epic Cardboard AdventuresJunior Makers 4DNext Chapter Crafts 4DAmazing Magic Tricks 4D, and Paper Airplanes with a Side of Science. Several series within the publisher’s Pebble Plus brand will also feature video content to help readers learn more on the topic, including Hands-On Science FunA Visit to…Animal OffspringInvestigate the Seasons, and Understanding Differences.
You will find the complete list of Capstone 4D including those coming up in the spring with a publish dates of January 1, 2018 here.
Matt Keller, Capstone Chief Marketing Officer shared,

Capstone 4D is an exciting way to bring another dimension to the pages of a book, engaging kids with a 360-degree view of a topic. Readers get the best of both worlds – kids who prefer print get bonus video content, and kids who prefer digital technology are highly motivated to explore the pages within a book. We hope librarians who haven’t had a chance to see Capstone 4D in action will visit us at AASL and see firsthand how these books can engage their readers and create inspired learning experiences in their schools.

Check out Capstone's 4D today....I know that you and your students will love this augmented reading experience too!  

Learn How To Upload A Custom Image Into Your Collections By Destiny

I have been working on several new Collections by Destiny focused on the holidays and New Year. 
You can find these six new Holiday and New Year Collections in last weeks Shannon's Friday Finds here.

With all of this work over the last couple of weeks on these Collections, I was super excited to hear the news last week that we now upload a custom image for the resources we add to our collections! 
For example, when I was adding resources to the Christmas Collection there were several that didn't include an image, just the broken camera image as in the Collection above.  
Now I can go to those, click on Edit at the top of that resource,
and click on 2. Image which is found.... the top of the window.
To change the image, all we have to do is click on Upload and....
upload the image we want.  We can even resize it to fit perfectly before we save it to the Collection.
Now, when I go to the Christmas Story and Song from Cantata Learning in the Christmas Collection, I will find the beautifully illustrated cover of Cantata Learning's Christmas as....
part of the Collection in a even better, more engaging way for our teachers, students and others using these amazing resources too. 
You will find more answers on help at Follett's Collection Help Center here.

And just to let you know....I hear we will be able to change the image of each Collection soon too. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

I'd Like To Invite You To Save An Extra 10% On FETC By Registering Today!

The Future of Education Technology Conference or FETC is right around the corner January 23-26, 2018 at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida.  

I am honored and thrilled to be part of this amazing event again and have something very special to share with you too!  

When you register today using the promo code MILLER18, you will save an extra 10% on the registration fees.  
I would love to see you at FETC as I will be sharing about a variety of Future Ready Librarian, education and library topics throughout the conference. 

And just wait until you see what is in store with the other 600+ learning opportunities offered in a variety of formats throughout FETC.  
This promo code expires 1/22/2018, so register today using MILLER18. 

We hope to see you there, friends.  

5 Ways Music Can Increase Student Engagement

The more we sing together, together, together.
The more we sing together, the happier we’ll be.
I loved singing The More We Get Together when I was a little girl. I remember singing it at school, in the car, at home, and as we walked down the road to my grandma’s house. Then when I became a mom, I sang it to my three children. And when I became a teacher librarian, we sang it in our library too.  
As a mom and a teacher, I always thought we should add… The more we sing together, the more engaged we will be!
This is the magic that we see when music is part of our collections woven throughout our libraries, classrooms, communities, and homes.
By bringing music to our libraries, collections, and students, we can promote literacy skills, deepen learning, and increase student engagement in so many ways. In fact, music can be a vital element in the development of children’s literacy and emotional skills, especially in the younger years.  
Let’s look at 5 ways music can help to increase student engagement. 
You will find this new post, 5 Ways Music Can Increase Student Engagement, on the Cantata Learning blog here.