Valley Ridge Reader

VRA Media Center News - December 2020

Tis' the Season to Be Reading

The Media Center is filled with new books and holiday cheer. Please use this newsletter to discover all the exciting literacy programs, reading challenges, and other activities the media center has to offer throughout the year. You will find this newsletter posted on the VRA Media Center homepage. Past newsletters are posted at Media News.

Hour of Code

We will celebrate Hour of Code with lessons on computer programming throughout the month of December. We will use laptops to code with Lightbot and The Grinch: Saving Christmas with Code. In addition there are holiday coding games on a site called Santa Tracker. The two coding games we are learning are Code Lab and Code Boogie. Below are 3 different levels of additional coding Choice Board activities that students can enjoy!

December Choice Boards

Our Numbers for November 2020

Number of Books Checked Out - 1792

Number of E-books Viewed - 709
Most Check-outs by a Student - Lucjana G. and Lily H.

Most Class Check-outs - Ms. Yarbrough's Class 98

Most Check-outs by Grade Level - Third Grade 377

Middle School Check-outs - 89

Most Check-outs by a Teacher - Ms. Butler 27

Number of New Books and Magazines Added - 107

Number of Class Visits - 79

SSYRA Battle of the Books and Club Meetings

Have you read 10 or more Sunshine State Books? Are you in 3rd through 8th grade? Do want to be on the SSYRA Battle Team? Then you are invited to SSYRA Book Club. 3rd - 5th grade students meet virtually in Schoology on Wednesdays at 2:30. Middle school students meet Wednesdays at 1:30 in Schoology. These book club meetings will lead up to the Battle Test which will be held in early January. The Battle of the Books competition for 3-5 will be Thursday, March 11 from 9-11and the Middle School Battle will be Tuesday, March 9 9 to 11. There will be a practice session for both teams on Monday, March 8. These competitions will be held virtually.

Our Awesome SSYRA Readers

Grades 6-8

Madison P. - 15

Lily H. - 15

Emma N. - 6

Matias - 5

Grades 3-5

Bridget W. - 15

Caleb B. - 15

Anaid A. - 15

Sarah D. - 12

Danielle P. - 10

Yiwen C. - 9

Ella W. - 9


Evan H. - 15

Jayden A. - 11

For more information and a list of books, visit the VRA Media Center Website or see the link below. Names updated at the beginning of the month. Look below to see students who have read all 15 SSYRA books this year.

Bucks for Buttons

The media center has an awesome button maker in the teacher work room. We will be offering button design rewards for students for 3 Hawk Bucks. Pick up your design template inside a small plastic bag from the basket outside of the media center. Turn in your bag with design, name and 3 Hawk Buck to the bin outside the media center by Dec. 16. Your button will be put in your teacher's homeroom box when it is ready. Limit 2 buttons per student.

Virtual Stick Togethers

We have a fun project for students to work on in their free time. It is called a Virtual Stick Together. It is a mosaic of tiles that are put together to make a picture. Go to the links below. Match the color to the letter in the grid. When all 4,000 tiles have been colored in according to the code, it will reveal an image. This is like the project we did in the media center last year when we used stickers to make a snowflake. Have fun!

December Stick Together

Elementary Stick Together

Epic School, Free and Unlimited - 40,000 Ebooks, Audiobooks and Videos

Epic is like Netflix for children's books. The e-book platform is provided free to educators and supported by home subscriptions. During the school day from 7am to 4pm students can access Epic at home or school. They also offer Epic Free for 2 extra hours at home. If you want an invite to this program, send Mrs. Ayrish Booysen an email.


  • Gives instant access to the world’s largest digital library of high-quality fiction and nonfiction books for kids with 40,000 ebooks, audio books, and learning videos
  • Includes personalized reading recommendations for each child based on individual reading preferences and abilities
  • Reading logs to track student progress
  • Available on iPads, iPhone, Android devices, and on any computer or desktop

You can read on Epic! Unlimited at home, with a subscription. The subscriptions are on sale this month.

What will we be learning in media this month?

1. First Steps to Research - World Book, Epic and Kid Friendly Search

2. SSYRA Jr. Story Time - If Your Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree

3. Hour of Code

4. Red and Lulu - the story of 2 cardinals and the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree

Our Awesome Volunteers - Adelaide

Adelaide helps in the media center in the mornings when it is our busiest time of the day. You'll find her cleaning and shelving books. Her help is an integral part of our morning routine. We love how we can count on her to get the job done!

Thank You for the Veterans Day Letters

We had over 100 participants in our Veterans Day Reading and Writing Challenge. Students are wearing their brag tag necklaces and our letters were delivered by Mrs. Xanders to retired veterans at a Senior Living Facility.

Birthday Book Club

The Valley Ridge Academy Media Center’s Birthday Book Club is a wonderful way to commemorate your child’s birthday. Your participation not only enriches the library collection but allows you and your child to be personally involved in its growth. To take part in the Birthday Book Club donate one new undamaged hardcover book (not a board book). This book should be a book that your child enjoys and one that we don’t have in the media center already. You can choose a new book at the book store or a new book from the Book Fair. A quick check of our library catalog (Destiny) will tell you if we already have the book. If you would prefer, you may make a monetary donation of $15 and your child can choose from recently acquired books that are waiting to be put on the shelves.

The following is included with your enrollment;

- A special book plate placed inside the front cover of the donated book with your child’s name and birthday.

- A photo that you take of your child with the book he/she chooses will be displayed online in the Valley Ridge Reader and on the WVRA morning news.

-Your child will receive Birthday Book Club bookmark

- Your child will be the first to read and/or check-out the book that he/she


For more information, contact the media center or fill out the form attached below.

Happy Birthday to our Book Club Hawks!

Valley Ridge Academy Media Center

The mission of the library media program is to ensure that students and staff are effective users of ideas, information and technology. Creating a foundation for lifelong learning and a love of reading is at the heart of our program.