Making Connections

The Rockwood Library Newsletter - December 2018

Include: AASL Shared Foundation #2

The Rockwood librarians are embracing the new American Association of School Librarians (AASL) National School Library Standards, which were released in November of 2017. These standards are built around six shared foundations: Inquire, Include, Collaborate, Curate, Explore, and Engage. This month's Making Connections focuses on some of the ways Rockwood librarians make the Include foundation part of their everyday practice as they work with students.The AASL Standards define Include as "[demonstrating] an understanding of and commitment to inclusiveness and respect for diversity in the learning community." You can learn more about the AASL National Library Standards by clicking here.

Author Nic Stone Visits Rockwood

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New York Times bestselling author Nic Stone visited all four of Rockwood's high schools the week after Thanksgiving. She presented in both large group and small group sessions, speaking to approximately 1,200 students during her three days in district. The author of two young adult books, Dear Martin and Odd One Out, Stone encouraged students to believe in themselves and not let others define them

Ms. Stone told students she became an author partly because she rarely saw people who look like her in the books she read when she was a student. She emphasized the power of story and its potential for helping readers discover the common humanity shared by all people. Stone's positive message, honesty, humor, and outgoing personality made her popular with students. Armani, a junior at RSHS, told her librarians that she enjoyed the author visit because she felt Stone was able to relate to her personally. Armani also said Stone's experiences with racism opened her eyes to some things she hadn't noticed before.

EHS librarian Dawn Jerger arranged the visits. The Rockwood high school librarians are grateful to the Rockwood DEED Office for helping with the expenses related to Ms. Stone's visit.

CMS Library's Therapy Dog Helps Students Feel Safe and Included

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Crestview Middle School has welcomed a new member to its learning community this year: a therapy dog named Clayton. Clayton helps meet the social and emotional needs of traditionally underserved populations in innovative ways. For instance, Clayton comforts students in times of need, provides an audience for reluctant readers as they read aloud, and is part of lessons that complement Crestview's SEL curriculum. Clayton also spends time in the library greeting patrons, helping all students to feel welcome.

Librarian Bridget DuMont and ELA teacher Melody Kaplan are Clayton's certified dog handlers.

How Librarians "Include" in the Library Collection

In addition to creating learning opportunities, activities, and lessons that are inviting and inclusive, Rockwood librarians create and maintain a diverse collection of resources. The materials in our libraries offer multiple points of views on issues and reflect the diversity of the community, state, country, and world in which we live. All students need to see themselves reflected in literature to feel included. At the same time, students also need exposure to books about people whose lives are different from their own in order to realize that all stories are worthy of being told.

While books are a focal point of each library collection, the Rockwood library's also subscribe to numerous databases that provide learners with current and reliable information about almost every topic imaginable. For example, CultureGrams provides data about more than 200 countries around the world, allowing students to learn about social customs, governments, geography, and daily life in those nations. Opposing Viewpoints in Context gives students access to selected articles that present all points of view on controversial issues such as the death penalty, gun control, health care, cloning, and much more.

By curating resources that encourage students to explore, consider, and understand multiple points of view, Rockwood librarians model the importance of inclusiveness for students.

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