Learning in Liberty's School Libraries, Winter 2013/2014

Genius Hour in Elementary Library Media Centers

This year in the elementary libraries students are participating in Genius Hour. Each week when students come to class they are working on inquiry learning and finding their own passion. Genius Hour is a chance for students to investigate, create, invent, wonder, and learn about an area of study of their choice. Many students began this process with a guided study of other geniuses through time, finding what they are passionate about, and how they can follow their passions to learn and create their own work. At the end of the year there will be an opportunity for students to share their genius. The goal is to give students a chance to think and problem-solve independently. Skylyn Stoos, a Lewis and Clark 3rd grader, says, "“We are creating our own genius!”

Library As Learning Commons

LPS library media centers are learning commons where students find learner-centered space that is used flexibly for collaboration among small and large groups, access to resources and technology that is 24/7, and maker spaces where students have a voice and can pursue their passions. “We get a chance to do what we want to do and learn at the same time,” says Avery Roffman, Lewis and Clark 3rd grader.

Library media specialists continue to adapt the physical and digital spaces of our library media centers to meet the needs of students through budget planning, acquisition decisions, and program management. The website of each LMC offers a glimpse into the ways the library supports student learning and information needs through resources, facilities and structure. Comfortable seating in multiple formations, flexible table configurations, mobile shelving, dry-erase walls, and small group spaces are just a few of the ways the physical space of LPS libraries invites students to make the space fit their learning needs.

Author Kelly Milner Halls Visits LPS Elementaries

Nonfiction author Kelly Milner Halls spent two fantastic weeks with the elementary kids of Liberty, November 4-15. Students in grades K-5 were treated to Ms. Hall’s weird and wonderful presentations. As an added bonus, Ms. Halls brought many intriguing artifacts including coprolite (fossilized dinosaur “droppings”), plaster casts of possible Sasquatch tracks (adult and baby), and a Feejee mermaid. Her presentations gave students much food for thought about source reliability, credibility and the importance of questions. For more information about Ms. Halls and to see some photos from her visits here in Liberty, go to

Thanks go to all the elementary school PTAs for making this event possible!

Liberty Public Schools Library Media Program

The mission of the Liberty school libraries is to prepare students for the future by teaching them to find the information they need, evaluate it and use it to solve problems. As certified teachers, the library media specialist in each school guides students toward success. The library media center provides students with access to thousands of print and digital resources, including fiction and nonfiction books and ebooks, online databases, magazines, newspapers, videos, and soundbooks. Visit the library media section of the district's website to find out more about your school library. Also, click here to see last quarter's newsletter if you missed it!

Left: Lewis and Clark students confer on a Genius Hour project.