Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Where Are You Reading Padlet! A Fun Way To Celebrate Reading!

With lots of our families sharing pictures of their children reading in fun and unique spots, I wanted to create a place for everyone to share these spots and pictures. 
I created a Padlet because it is so easy to share the link for anyone to add a picture to. 
To add a photo, you just click on the little upload arrow, circled in hot pink above.
When you click on it, Files comes up and lets you pick a file from your computer by dragging it or clicking on the bottom that says Pick File. 

Once you have picked a file, your image will upload and pop up on the Padlet wall. 

Let's fill up the Van Meter! Where Are You Reading? Padlet, friends.  We can't wait to see where you have been reading. 

It's Time For Week 2 Of The PebbleGo Adventures!

It's a NEW week of PebbleGo Adventures and Questions for Family Fun from our friends at Capstone.  I shared these in this post last week too. 
When we visit the Parent Resources page on PebbleGo.com,
we will find the questions that can be answered within PebbleGo to inspire curiosity in all kids, and the daily PebbleGo Adventures that families can do at home with things around the house.
 For Week 2, March 30-April 3,
there are 5 new PebbleGo Questions and Adventures, that students will be excited to explore.
And don't forget how you can share what you have learned, read and loved about each article In the PebbleGo Research Buncee Journals too.
They have included a link for making a Buncee Journal of your own on that page. 
 You will also find the Past Weeks' Questions and Adventures and...
...Additional PebbleGo Resources and Parents

You can share this link with families and have them sign up to receive updates here.

I hope you enjoy sharing all of these ideas and resources with your school community.  We can't wait to hear how you use them too. 

Read & Create With The Chalk Giraffe...From #ShannonsBookReel

Today, I am kicking off a fun new way to highlight all of the special books from Capstone with #ShannonsBookReel.  This will be a place to highlight all types of books from Capstone and the amazing authors and illustrators behind the books too.  
To start, I want to highlight one of the Capstone books from our new You've Been Virtually Book'd program and thought, 
The Chalk Giraffe would be the perfect one for this warm and sunny day. 

You will find the Buncee for Week 1 of You've Been Virtually Book'd here.  It includes a link to sign up for Capstone Interactive eBooks which is free for everyone right now. 
When you click on The Chalk Giraffe link in the Buncee above,  it will take readers into this adorable and sweet new book written by Kirsty Paxton and illustrated by Megan Lötter.
As shared on Capstone's site, 

A little girl's imagination springs to life when the chalk giraffe she drew on the pavement begins talking to her. But then the fickle giraffe begins making demands, and the girl must draw surroundings to fulfill his requests...a tree, soft grass, and animal friends. But nothing seems to please him! This delightful rhyming story escalates until the girl draws a laughing giraffe companion that cheers up the grumpy giraffe at last.
After reading the book again and getting out the sidewalk chalk at our house, I was so happy to see a Facebook post from one of our school families.  

Natasha shared pictures of her kids drawing on the sidewalks outside their house today. 
 And not only were they being creative outside, they even made the chalk too! 
 Natasha shared the recipes so we can all give this fun activity a try!
You will find the DIY Aromatherapy Play Dough here on the Rocky Mountain Oil blog. 
What a fun way to celebrate being creative, reading and being together.  I can't wait to give these two recipes a try and to share The Chalk Giraffe with our readers and others too.

Follow #shannonsbookreel for more books and ideas!  And please share your ideas too! 

Virtual Pop-In Storytime...A Way To Stay Connected To Our Kids Through Books!

I love sharing special books with our students and teachers.  
One of my favorite things to do is visit classrooms for little Pop-In Storytimes to read and share picture books.  This is something I started last year and always love when I have time to do this throughout the year. 

You can read all about our Pop-In Storytime here.  
As I was talking with my friend and colleague, Tracy Ferguson, yesterday about how she is connecting with her 2nd graders virtually everyday, I thought,

Hey, I know what I can do to connect with our students right now!  I can join the teachers in a few of their meetings with their students for Virtual Pop-In Storytime! 
I created the fun graphic and added it to a Google Doc to share with our teachers.  They can let me know what time and day they are meeting with their students online and I will come up with a schedule. 
Even though I would rather be with our students at school sharing books, I am excited to have Virtual Pop-In Storytime too!  

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Using Collections By Destiny For Continuous Learning!

As we work to move our students and families online for continuous learning opportunities, we are all looking for the best platforms and methods to deliver these resources and content in organized, engaging and meaningful ways. 
We are using our library Google Sites as a place to deliver and organize all of materials and resources for our students, teachers, families and learning community. 

A big part of these Google Sites are the pages where we are sharing the Digital Reading and Learning Resources.  These include audio books, eBooks, online read alouds, reference materials like PebbleGo, streaming videos, virtual field trips and more. 
Even though I have broken each category into it's own section on this page, like above with Audio Books, 
I have included a place for the Van Meter Collections by Destiny as well. 
When they click on the link, it takes them into ONE nicely organized Collection by Destiny Set for all of our Collections by Destiny for Continuous Learning.  
I just love how I can bring all of these Collections into one Collection Set so I have one link to share with students, teachers and families.  It makes it so much easier for all of us. 
Let me show you how to create a Collection Set.

First, go to your Collection homepage and click on the orange plus sign circle in the right hand corner.
 You are going to create a new Collection.
I like to upload my own images that I create in Canva so they all look consistent and have the title of the Collection Set or Collection right on the image. 
The image needs to be at least 600 x 400 pixels (width by height) to fit into the space for the Collection. 
Once your Collection is created, you click on the orange plus sign circle in the right hand corner....
 ...and this menu will pop up allowing you to add Collections. 
When you click on Collections, it will bring up a list of all of the Collections you have created or added to your account.  You simply click on the ones you want to add to the Collection Set and go to the very bottom to click....
...Add.  Those Collections then become part of your Collection Set as seen...
...here in this one for our Continuous Learning. 
 You will see that I create an image for each Collection,
 ...again, so they are consistent and appealing for everyone.

As we continue down this road and in the future of our learning community, we will add to these Collections by Destiny just like we have done through the year. In fact, we have been using Collections for the last few years for not only gathering resources, but for creating learning paths and experiences for our students in various ways.
One of our favorite Collections Sets is this one for Special Yearly Events that you will find here.  

We have added this to our Van Meter Library Google Site so families can use these at home too. 

Tomorrow, we will be sharing these new Collections for Continuous Learning with our school community.  I am excited for how helpful these will be as our students continue to learn at home and how they will grow and change with our needs and resources we use. 
I will also be sharing the Follett Classroom Ready Collections (CRC) that Follett has provided all Destiny customers for free as part of their eLearning Resources offerings and plan.  
As the Follett site shares, Classroom Ready Collections feature teacher-vetted, relevant resources aligned to standards for science, social studies and English language arts.  These contain a variety of resource types to support every learner. 

Follett is waiving the cost for current Destiny customers through June 30 for its Classroom Ready Collections.  More than 2,300 free CRC licenses have been activated to support the needs of school districts, teachers, students and families. 

You can read more about this very special offer here

I am excited for what the Collections I have created, and the Classroom Ready Collections from Follett, will bring our community.  I am thankful that we have such a wonderful tool to bring not only our resources, but our learners, teachers and families together in one spot.  And I love the fact that I can share and collaborate with all of you! 

Let me know how you are using Collections by Destiny.  I want to hear how this is helping you and your school community too.