Howard County Library
Teacher Notes From Howard County Library - Elementary School Category
  • Polaris Power-Tip for Teachers: Set It and Forget It!

    image of card catalog drawerDo you currently place holds on materials for you and your students through hclibrary.org?

    You may have noticed a new feature of placing your requests online with an advance activation date. For educators who know the wisdom of planning, this new feature is life-changing. Some examples of how to use this Polaris Power-Tip include:

    • You are an elementary school teacher and want to plan your read-alouds. You can now find and request your favorite books for the entire year! Requesting a copy of  The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything now so you can read it at Halloween is entirely possible. If you want it at the end of October, I recommend requesting it to activate in mid-September if you are using your A+ card, so you have it in plenty of time for a spooky read-aloud. Remember: Your A+ Educator Card checks out items for six weeks, so you have some wiggle room!
    • You are a middle or high school teacher who prepares a unit every February on careers, and you want to make sure you have a good variety of print and nonfiction video resources for your students. You can locate items at any time with a subject search, request them, then set your activation date for mid-January. If for some reason, your schedule changes (snow days?), you can always use your account to adjust the activation dates. The only caveat is that once the items have been shipped, the activation date is no longer adjustable. You can always request them again.
    • If you have trouble finding time to read for personal education or enjoyment during the school year. Maybe you’ve been wanting to read The Help, but you know you probably won’t have time until winter break. You can set the activation for early-December. Even though in August almost 300 people are on hold for it, you will continue to move up the queue until you reach the top spot, where you stay until you activate the request. You will easily have your book in time for vacation.

    I hope this feature helps you as much as it helped me! I use this feature extensively for planning my book clubs, personal reading, and for upcoming HCLS classes. Stay tuned for another great Polaris Power-Tip for Teachers soon. In the meantime check out some other exciting features of the new HCLS catalog!

    Sarah Russo
    Howard County Library System, Elkridge Branch

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  • Welcome Back!

    howard county library system logoWelcome back to Teacher Notes for the 2011-12 school year. We’re looking forward to connecting your students with great information this year, and sharing details of our resources and activities with you.

    So where to begin? Here are five things you might do to start the new school year:

    1. Download our 2011-12 Curriculum Enhancement Guide (PDF) for details of the many classes we can teach. Would you like to start a book club? Are your students beginning a research project? We can support History Day, Science Fair, Big 6 and Careers, amongst many others. Look on page 4 of the guide (elementary) or page 9 (secondary) to find the name and contact information for your A+ liaison, or use our directory. Each school in the county is partnered with one of our six library branches, and staff from that branch will serve as your first point of contact as you schedule a class.
    2. Complete the online application for an educator library card if you do not already have one. With this new card, educators may borrow up to 30 items each visit, keep materials as long as six weeks (42 days), borrow all library materials (except non-instructional videocassettes and DVDs), and renew materials once. A+ Educator library cards are not exempt from fines, but materials returned within 10 days of the due date will be fine free.
    3. Bookmark our elementary or secondary assignment alert form, so that we can assemble a collection of resources at your chosen branch for a particular assignment. Give us the information about your assignment ahead of time, and we will assemble a collection of age-appropriate resources for your students at the branch (or branches) of your choice.
    4. Ask us about our Specialized Online Research Tools, and about Online Homework Assistance from Brainfuse.
    5. Invite a research specialist and instructor to Back-to-School night to share these resources with parents and with your colleagues.

    We look forward to working closely with you this year to bring these and other resources to your students. Subscribe to the RSS feed of Teacher Notes using your favorite feed reader to have this information delivered to you.

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  • Have a great summer!

    cartoon image of kids holding a sign reading school's outIt’s that time of year again -  bulletin boards are blank, desks are stacked with chairs…it’s time for summer break! We here at the Howard County Library System hope that you have had a successful school year full of achievement and growth. When you come back in the Fall, we will be here again, giving you weekly information about classes, events, and other resources we offer here at HCLS to benefit your students. Until then, have a great and safe summer break!

    Amy Stephens, Howard County Library Glenwood Branch

     

     

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  • Letterboxing @ The Library

    items for scavenger huntNo school on Friday, May 13? No problem! If you like to solve riddles or puzzles, go on scavenger hunts, or use your observation skills, join us at  Miller Branch for Letterboxing @ The Library on Friday, May 13 at 2 pm. After learning about the history and rules of the ancient game of letterboxing, you will receive a set of clues about the secret letterboxes hidden throughout the Miller Branch Library. Work individually, in pairs or in groups.

    Ages 8-13. No registration required.

    Amy Stephens, Howard County Library Glenwood Branch

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  • E-Books for kids!

    stack of books with mouse attachedSpring is here , and with it come some exciting new resources at the Howard County Library System! We have four new resources available for you to use with your students.  Check out  hclibrary.org/ebooksforkids

    The new resources include:

    TumbleBookLibrary has more than 200 children’s  books. Favorites like “The Paper Bag Princess” by Robert Munsch, as well as fairy tales come to life in an educational and interactive way. Other titles include: “Diary of a Worm,” “How I Became a Pirate,” “Miss Malarkey Doesn’t Live in Room 10,”  and “Tops and Bottoms. More accomplished readers can read read-along chapter books, featuring narration, sentence highlighting, and automatic page turning. Spanish and French titles are also available!

    BookFLIX , an online program for children, pairs 95  classic video storybooks with nonfiction e-books. BookFLIX builds a love of reading while reinforcing early reading skills.
    TrueFlix™ leverages 47 award-winning True Books content to help students hone reading skills, build knowledge of subject-area content, and cultivate 21st century skills.

    The International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL) operates like a bookmobile for the global age. The ICDL collection includes more than 4,000 books in 55 languages.

    Take a look around our digital collection. This is just the beginning!

    Shirley O’Neill, Administration Office

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  • Chess Tournament

    image of chess pieces on chess boardChess Tournament

    The Howard County Library Chess Tournament provides an opportunity for students to meet and compete with other students who share their enthusiasm for this classic board game. All participants will receive fabulous prizes.

    The Howard County Library Chess Tournament happens at the Miller Branch on April 16th, 2011 at 1 pm. It is open to ages 9-17; register online or call 410-313-1950.

    Courtney Gardinier – Howard County Library Miller Branch

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  • 4th Annual Edible Books Contest

    edible book cover of twilight

    Do you have students that like to read and are looking for a new way to express their appreciation for favorite titles? They can decorate a cake to look like a book cover!

    They can help us celebrate the International Edible Book Festival and Howard County Library’s Fourth Annual Edible Books Contest at the Miller Branch on Wednesday, March 30 at 7 pm. The contest is simple: bake and decorate a cake to look like your favorite book. All decorations must be edible, and all cakes must be made and decorated by you.

    Winners will receive prizes from Michaels and Barnes & Noble. The contest is open students aged 9-17. Register online or call 410-313-1950.

    Courtney Gardinier – Miller Branch

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  • Discover Great Artists: Georgia O’Keefe

    georgia okeefe paintingAttention all young explorers, artists and artistic explorers!

    Do your students enjoy observing nature?  Do they collect found objects?

    Then they will be interested in Georgia O’Keefe, the artist who was inspired by the New Mexico landscape to paint flowers, rocks, shells and animal bones in a whole new way.

    Invite your students to join us at the Elkridge Branch on Saturday, March 19 at 2 pm to learn about O’Keefe’s life and work.  Then, they create their own O’Keefe influenced piece of art.Register online or by calling 410-313-5085.

    Kim T. Ha — Howard County Library, Elkridge Branch

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  • Cake Decorating Workshop

    empty plate with fork and knife

    The Fourth Annual Edible Books Contest is on its way!  Maybe you have students who are avid readers who would be be interested in entering, but who aren’t as confident in their decorating skills as they are in their reading skills.

    They can visit Miller Branch on Tuesday, March 15at 7 pm to learn how to decorate a cake like a professional. All the edible masterpieces can be entered into the  Edible Books Contest on Wednesday, March 30.

    Register online or call 410-313-1950.

    Courtney Gardinier – Miller Branch

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  • Meet the Author Paul Fleisher

    cover art image of Lightning, Hurricanes, and Blizzards by Paul Fleisher The author of more than three dozen books for children and educators, Paul Fleisher presents his new Weatherwise series of books. His books for young people cover a variety of science, ecology, and natural subjects. In 1999, he was awarded the Thomas Jefferson Medal for Outstanding Contribution to Natural Science Education. The presentation includes hands-on demonstration and activities. Ages 8 – 12 (adults welcome); 60 min. Books available for purchase and signing. No registration Required.

    Miller Branch Saturday, January 22; 11 am

    East Columbia Branch Saturday, January 22; 3 pm

    Cari Gast – Howard County Library Administration

     

     

     

     

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