McBee Library Newsletter

September 2015

Up and Running

Dear library volunteers and supporters,


This school year started off with a bang! In these few short weeks we have completed library inventory for the year, made 500 new library cards and organized them in teacher folders, overhauled the AV room (now also an office for diagnostician Pat Curtis) and Professional section, welcomed students and teachers back to the library, and wrapped 500+ birthday books. I couldn't have done any of it without your help; thank you. Special thanks to corporate volunteers from Red Velvet Events, Bazaarvoice, and BMC Software who pitched in to help with these special projects.


You are all invited to join the McBee family at a baby shower on Wednesday, October 7 at 3:15 in the library. This joint shower will be for both baby boy Stephens and the baby girl of another pregnant teacher, Victoria Garcia. There is absolutely no expectation that you attend, and certainly no expectation of gifts; I only wanted to share the chance to relax and celebrate with us after all the compassion you have shown in supporting me during this pregnancy. Please email karen.ritch@austinisd.org if you plan to attend. I expect the shower to last an hour or less.


Get ready - October will be a busy month! Book Fair, RIF Book Giveaway and Family Literacy Night/Book Swap are all coming up soon. (See below for dates and details.)


You are welcome any time; see you in the library!

Poppy's Back

We are so fortunate to have a pet therapy dog "read" with six of our students each Friday in the library. Poppy and her handler, Emma, are part of the BOW WOW Reading Dog program from Austin Dog Alliance; this is our second year working together. It is amazing to see how students with reading difficulties and/or social and emotional challenges respond when they interact with Poppy. What's even more incredible is watching teachers light up when they see her!
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Wrap Party

The first-ever wrap party was a huge success, and I was able to give away the very first birthday book that same afternoon. This cutie's teacher told me his new Spider-Man book "made his day," especially since his birthday cupcakes didn't make it to school in time. Thank you all for your ribbon and wrapping paper donations and for the elbow grease you invested in making this long-held vision a reality. I have loved explaining the program to classes in the library; of course they all notice the presents right away!


I have a small number of books left to wrap and several stacks that are wrapped but still need ribbons. I have all the supplies; let me know if this is something you'd be interested in working on gradually at home.

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Fit to Print

Check out this great cover story on the McBee mural in this month's edition of the Community Impact Newspaper. (Yours truly is quoted!) The mural should be completed in October. Our students have enjoyed their "fame" and the experience of helping artist Ethan Azarian bring public art to North Austin. The mural is made possible by the Love North Austin North by North Austin Garden Tour and Rundberg Rising. Thanks to Community Impact for taking note and spreading the word about one of the many wonderful things happening at our school.

Upcoming Events & Save the Dates


  • October 5, Monday: Author visits from local authors Kelly Crawford and Salima Alikhan
  • October 7, Wednesday: Baby Shower at 3:15, library
  • October 9, Friday: Book Fair setup, extra help needed from 1 pm to ???
  • October 12, Monday: Columbus Day, no classes (parent conference day & family shopping at Book Fair)
  • October 12-16: Scholastic Book Fair: Monster Readers theme
  • October 16, Friday: Book Fair breakdown, extra help needed from 3 pm to ???
  • October 17, Saturday: Family Field Trip to the Texas Book Festival, 9-noon
  • October 19-23: RIF Book Giveaway Week: Monster Readers theme
  • October 22, Thursday: Family Literacy Night & Book Swap, extra help needed 9- 11 am and 4-7:30 pm (or any part thereof)
  • November 14, Saturday: Baby Stephens' due date!


AISD School Calendar: I will continue to highlight upcoming events in this newsletter, but to see district holidays, etc., for the remainder of the year you can access the AISD master calendar here.

Find McBee on Twitter

Both McBee and the McBee Library have Twitter accounts! Find and follow us!

@ElementaryMcbee

@McBeeLibrary

Quoted

"Shout for libraries. Shout for the young readers who use them."

-Patrick Ness

McBee at a Glance (this year's numbers)

  • Enrolled students: 497
  • By self-report, 91% Hispanic (may or may not be in bilingual classes); 5% African American; 2% White; 1% two or more; 1% Asian
  • Economically disadvantaged students: 96%
  • English Language Learners (ELLs): 70%
  • Special Education students: 11%
  • Gifted and Talented students: 1%
  • 25 classroom teachers; 3 Special Education teachers; 5 Teacher Assistants; 1.3 each of art, music, and PE teachers (one full-time and one rotating teacher for each area); 1 counselor; 1 Parent Support Specialist; 3 Instructional Coaches (Reading, Math, and Science); 2 Reading Specialists; 3 part-time tutors; 1 nurse; 1 diagnostician (whose office is in the AV room!); 3 front office staff; 2 administrators (Principal and Assistant Principal), and...1 librarian with lots of great volunteers! :)

Ongoing Needs

  • Shoes - our students are frequently in need! Payless gift cards are best, since they help Parent Support Specialist Erica Reyes match the student with the right size.
  • Small foyer-sized mirror to hang in the library office
  • Kleenex
  • Ziploc bags in various sizes
  • calendars, stationery, and other unwanted gift tchotchkes you may receive in the mail from charitable organizations
  • Stickers
  • Puzzles and board games
  • Household disinfecting wipes (Lysol, Clorox, or similar)
  • Bookmarks
  • Paper shopping bags with handles and/or reusable shopping tote bags with handles
  • Box Tops
  • Gently used children's picture books and chapter books
  • Office & school supplies (new and/or gently used)
  • Children's DVDs (new and/or gently used, G rating only)
  • Inexpensive digital cameras

Like what you see in the library?

Tell the school board all about it by sending an email to trustees@austinisd.org