Library Annual Report 2015-2016

Edward Harris, Jr. Middle School

Highlights from the year

  • Winning a Scholastic Book Fair President's Award for Exceptional Performance for Crew Initiative for our Fall Book Crew which included $500.00 of Scholastic Books.
  • Distributing textbooks once during the year for our new A/B schedule.
  • Presenting our databases and Sacramento Public Library homework support to our students and their parents at Parent University in September.
  • Celebrating Banned Book Week.
  • Collaborating with Sacramento Public Librarians (Elsie Mak from the Elk Grove branch and Nathan Milos from the Valley Hi branch).
  • Collaborating with 8th-grade English Language Arts classes on researching the Holocaust.
  • Collaborating with Mr. Villalobos's EL History classes to research United States Civil War battles in 8th-grade and notable Renaissance figures in 7th-grade.
  • Reading and discussing Guided Inquiry Design by Kuhlthau, Maniotes, and Caspari in our Library Steering Committee.
  • Celebrating May the 4th with a Star Wars Scavenger Hunt.
  • Conducting a Scholastic Spring Book Fair with a Greek mythology theme.

Library Visitation

The MTHS/EHMS Library continues to be visited frequently by our students. Our expanded labs of 40 computers have provided more opportunities for students to use technology to conduct research or complete homework assignments. Nancey Bartow, our EHMS library technician, kept our library festive and engaging with colorful bulletin boards and displays. Our yearlong focus featured the genre of Science Fiction and our spaceship display requested students to "take me to your reader."

While class visitations seemed to be lower this year (which I attributed to teachers adjusting to the new A/B schedule), teachers and their classes still participated in library orientations, and teachers with an established history of visiting the library for research continued to utilize the library and its resources.

All 7th-grade students participated in a general library orientation in August.

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Book Crew Success!

This year the student volunteer Book Crew planned and managed two Scholastic Book Fairs. Our Fall Fair coincided with our Readapalooza evening. Eighty students applied from both Monterey Trail High School and Edward Harris, Jr. Middle School to be a member of the Book Crew. Past members in good standing, interviewed new members in teams of two. Once new members were selected, they received job assignments. Experienced Book Crew members trained our new members. Our Fall Fair "The Walking Read" was successful and upon recommendation from our Scholastic representative, I entered the crew in the Scholastic Book Crew Contest. Scholastic Book Fairs awarded the Fall Book Crew a President's Award for Exceptional Performance for Crew Initiative. As a result, our library was awarded $500 in Scholastic Dollars to purchase books. The Spring Book Crew changed our workroom into Mt. Olympus for our Greek Mythology-themed fair. Our student customers left their backpacks in Hades and crossed the River Styx to enjoy shopping for books in the Garden of the Gods. We again enjoyed a successful fair, thanks to the diligence of our student crew and a very effective managing team of six experienced crew members.

Library Services

Our library opened at 7:30 a.m. and closed at 3:30 p.m. These hours allowed the high school students 30 minutes of time before school and the middle school students 45 minutes of library time. With a dismissal time of 2:45 p.m., EHMS students had an additional 45 minutes of time after school and the high school had 20 minutes of time. Due to our Professional Learning Schedule, our library is closed before and after school on Thursdays but open during the students' school day and during lunches.

I continued to present Digital Learning segments at our staff meetings which introduce our teachers to free technology they could use with their students, for presentation, for information and for organization. A highlight of these presentations was demonstrating Plickers, a student response system, to the group. Many teachers began using this free Web 2.0 technology in their classrooms. During Pre-Service, I reviewed our Library resources such as EBSCOHost, Grolier Online, NoodleTools and WebPath Express with staff and encouraged them to use these resources with Chromebooks in the classroom as well as visit the library.

Our liaison with the Sacramento Public Library continues to flourish. Elsie Mak of the Elk Grove SPL branch provided forms for students to sign up for library cards during our first Parent University. She even personally delivered SPL library cards for students who had signed up to our campus! She attended our Parent University's Readapalooza in November to promote SPL services. Nathan Milos fro the Valley Hi Branch met with Annette Klein and me to share programs held at his branch. We publicized his summer programs. A few members of our Book Crew serve as Teen Advisory members for the Valley Hi Branch.

We continued to notify parents and guardians of overdue materials with mailings sent in February and April. Other ways we notified students were through School Loop mail and news, report card holds and the Library No Activities List. Our library technicians were also able to make phone calls to the families of students who had many textbooks overdue to encourage them to return these items.

Goals for 2016-17

  • Continue to learn more about Guided Inquiry Research and the possibilities of this method supporting students to become stronger researchers, writers, and critical thinkers and introduce this practice to Harris teachers.
  • Continue to work toward the goal of providing individual Destiny account access for students and staff which will allow access to WebPath Express and our e-book collection.
  • Work with staff to implement the use of Google Classroom and other Google applications and coach them when needed.
  • Provide more events in the library to promote reading, research and the safe use of technology.
  • Continue to share technology tools and research strategies with staff through time at staff meetings, department meetings, and workshops.
  • Promote our Library Services with staff, students, and parents.
  • Continue to collaboration with my fellow library colleagues to develop best practices in teaching research and technology use, promoting reading, and maintaining quality library services.