Friday, November 30, 2018

The New Future Ready Breakout EDU Is Here!

It's here!  A Breakout EDU we all have been waiting for...Lost In Time: Is The Future Ready? 

Future Ready Schools partnered with Breakout EDU to bring this amazing and innovative professional learning experience to leadership teams.  
Lost In Time: Is The Future Ready is focused around the Future Ready Framework and will be the perfect addition to a district work when being introduced to the concepts of Future Ready using the immersive learning game platform of Breakout EDU. 

I am excited for this Breakout EDU and can't wait to use it in the future with districts, organizations and of course, Future Ready Librarians too!  

For more information, you can visit

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Winter Break Reading Bingo from Capstone!

December is almost here and before we know it, we will be at winter break.  This is a time for family, friends and fun. We want to find ways to keep our students reading over the holiday too. 
Today, our friends at Capstone shared something really special they have created that will do just that!

It is called Winter Break Reading Bingo. This will be a wonderful way to give them lots of ideas for reading over the break.  I love the ideas they have suggested on the site....

Make a photo collage of completed cards after break and Encourage students to have everyone in their family complete a card are two of my favorite ideas and two that I will definitely be suggesting as we send the Winter Break Reading Bingo home with our students and out to families in an email and on our library social media in December.

By visiting the site, you will be able to download the...
...Winter Break Reading Bingo in color and.... black and white.  

I love reading the little ideas inside of each square...

Read in the car, Eat a snack while you read, Read a poem, Read to a pet, Read in bed and so many more ideas that will excite your readers too. 

Thank you Capstone....We love how you care about our readers and reading! 

Watch The NEW Future Ready Librarian Webinar...Exploring Equitable Digital Access Here

You can now watch the NEW Future Ready Librarian webinar, Exploring Equitable Digital Access here and share it with others.  

My friends and colleagues Ashley Cooksey, Instructional Technology Coach, Batesville School District (AL), Len Bryan, Library Technical Systems Manager, Denver Public Schools (CO) and Kristin Mattson, Library Media Center Director, Waubonsie Valley High School (IL) joined me for the webinar.

We discussed how school library programs help ensure that students have equitable digital access. School librarians are supporters and advocates for equitable access to collections tools using digital resources, programming, and services that support the school district’s strategic vision.

Ashley, Len and Kristin shared their unique experiences on how they have approached the goal of ensuring equitable access. I loved hearing their stories and ideas.  I know you all will too. 

Sign Up For National Scribble Day...Coming Up On March 27, Friends! Let's Celebrate!

I love that there is going to be a National Scribble Day! 
When my friend and colleague, Alexa, shared this news with me from a post she saw on Instagram, I signed up right away and put it on our related arts calendar as a day we could come together for a little collaboration and a whole lot of fun! 
National Scribble Day is based off of Diane Alber's book, I'm Not Just A Scribble.  

You can watch this short video to learn more about National Scribble Day and visit...
...The Scribble Day page on her site for Free Lesson Plans and... 
...lots of super cool ideas to get inspired with scribbles and her book.  
You can sign up here to be part of National Scribble Day on March 27, 2019 too.   
Our related arts team met last week and started talking about and planning for this special day at Van Meter.  This weekend, I had so much fun pulling together more ideas and resources. 

I am thinking this would also be a wonderful day for us to make some global connections with others!  Let's keep that in mind friends as we are making our plans. 

I hope to see lots of you participate in National Scribble Day too! We can't wait. 

Share Your Mural & Pictures In The Traveling Mural Project Google Slides, Friends!

Our Traveling Mural Project is getting to the point of finished murals, pieces of the murals traveling around the world and new collaborative murals being assembled in 130 schools around the world. 

With all of these wonderful connections and creations taking place, we need a place to show the beautiful murals and very special children, librarians, teachers and communities who are part of this first Traveling Mural Project. 

If you have participated in the Traveling Mural Project, please read the directions and contribute here.  If you have any questions, let me know. 

You are welcome to visit the presentation, friends to see all of the neat things being shared.  Once everyone has shared, I will turn it into a digital product that we can keep and share with others too. 

I can’t tell you how much this project means to me. It has been such a special experience sharing it with all of you, my students and community. Together, think of the impact and difference we all made. That is what it is all about.

I can’t wait to see all of the traveling murals and the distance we have traveled with them.  

And remember to keep using #TravelingMural on Twitter and Instagram.  It has been so much fun watching all of the sharing and celebrating taking place! 

Friday, November 23, 2018

How Do You Integrate Coding Into Your Library, Classroom and Home!

We are all doing lots of researching, collaborating, planning and sharing as we get ready for Hour of Code, December 3-9, 2018.   In fact, I just shared a big post about a new Symbaloo, Collection and lots of awesome books, eBooks, songs, sites and resources today on my blog here

As we prepare, I am sharing this Padlet that I started last year around this time.  It is so helpful and empowering to see how others are thinking about and integrating coding into their community. 

You can visit the Padlet here and please add your ideas too.  We can't wait to see what you do too!

New Coding Resources, Books, Songs, Sites & Activities for Hour of Code & All Year Long!

As we get ready for the last four weeks of 2018 and our last library rotation, we are focusing on computer science, especially coding, robotics and game building with Bloxels and BreakoutEDU, at Van Meter. 

This is also the perfect connection for Hour of Code, which is coming up December 3-9, 2018. 

For the coding piece, we have put together a newly updated Coding Symbaloo that you can find here. It is filled with awesome books, eBooks, resources, digital tools and apps, and so much more that you and your school community will find useful and informative too.

In this post, I would like to show you around the Symbaloo and all of the treasures it holds.
 First, the Coding Symbaloo is a piece of our Coding, Coding, Coding Collection by Destiny.

Please feel free to use and share this public Collection with your school community too. If you would like to collaborate on this Collection, just let me know and I will add you.  I would love that! 
Next, are the wonderful resources from, which is the organization that started and supports Hour of Code every year. 

As shown circled in the Symbaloo, I will kick off our work in coding with the students by showing this new video for this year, What Is Creativity? #Hour of Code. 
In fact, there is an entire What is Creativity Series from can be found here.  These will be such a powerful way to kick off the work we will do for Hour of Code and throughout this rotation. 
Next up on the Symbaloo are the terrific resources found in the right hand corner.....books and eBooks! 
I love all of these so much and I can't wait to share them with our students, teachers and families. 
A favorite is my new book from the Capstone Adventures in Makerspace series, A Coding Mission. You can read all about this 4D graphic novel and the other three in the series here
Four other favorites are the Code It! series of stories and songs from Cantata Learning.  You can read all about this super fun series and the resources available here

It will be awesome using these four books as we teach them these basic computer science/coding concepts in the library and ones they can take home to practice too. 
A Coding Mission, all four of Code It! and this sweet Code Play series with Adi and Gabi are all available within Capstone Interactive, which is a great way to share when learning something new as all of our students can listen to them anytime at school and at home. 

I also included EPIC and the new....
...Coding Collection I put together together to share on the Symbaloo. You can find it here. 
I LOVED finding my friend and author, Ruth Spiro's book, Baby Loves Coding! and... 
...this coding series from Lerner. 
And last, but not least is the Computer Science article in PebbleGo which, 
covers coding, along with other important information. 
There is a Share What You Know Activity Sheet available with the PebbleGo article on the site too.  
On the Symbaloo, I have added a lot of coding games and simulations. There are several new ones including....
Dance Party from and Amazon Future Engineer, 
and Create a Holiday Emoji from....
Made with Code Google,  
These join lots that have been around for a year or two but that are still awesome and ones that our students love! 

They include Tynker,  
Vidcode and more. 
With all of the Hour of Code Activities on the site, it is helpful to be able to search by age/grade level at the top. 
One of my favorite resources for teaching specific coding skills are the three lessons that I have included towards the top of the Coding Symbaloo. 
As you start thinking about and planning your Hour of Code, go to the to sign up.  
It's truly amazing to see how many young people and communities are involved in this important event each year.  

I hope you join us as we celebrate and find these resources helpful to use, share and celebrate coding within your library, school and community too!  

And remember, you can get to all of these resources and more at the Coding Symbaloo here

Thursday, November 22, 2018

I Built Myself In LEGO Pieces In LEGO Life!

I love LEGO figurines. Hagan and I have so much fun collecting them and I have brought a lot to school to share this year too.  

I mean, who doesn't love a cute little LEGO figurine after all! 
Well, tonight while catching up on one of my favorite places for lots of maker inspiration, the Maker Maven Facebook page, I was so excited to see this app from LEGO....
...LEGO Life
When I read the article they posted, This New LEGO Life App Will Make You Wish You Were A Kid Again 
I couldn't wait to check it out for myself. 
As I got logged in and created my LEGO Nickname, 
I couldn't wait for the next step...Building MYSELF in LEGO pieces! 

Awhhhhhh, I have always wanted to be able to do this!  I couldn't wait to try it out and I sure can't wait to show my students when we head back to school after Thanksgiving break. 
I was able to select several things including my gender, hair, face, skin color,
the things in my hands,  
my clothes, 
my eyewear and more.  
It was easy to edit and so much fun to make her like me!
Within LEGO Life, we can also Like Things such as pictures of creations and even....
 ....add stickers to the photos we upload of our LEGO creations. 
 We can make comments using LEGO emoji's and....
 ...earn badges for the work we do....
...within our LEGO Life.

As I got to know the LEGO Life app and all of the ways I could use it, I got more and more excited about showing this one to my students, especially those who LOVE LEGO!
You will find LEGO Life here in the App Store.  

I hope you have lots of fun with this one too.