SLS Weekly Update

October 30, 2020

Beyond Access PD day with NYC Librarians

If you are still in need of convincing, why you should attend the Beyond Access Forum on November 3rd, see video below!

The day will be recorded. Register, pop-in, pop-out, but take advantage of this opportunity.

Did I mention we have a track just for LIBRARIANS!!!!


Melissa Jacobs, Director
NYC Department of Education/NYC School Library System

Beyond Access Forum

TeachingBooks Virtual Teaching Ideas

Explore resources for jumping-off points that deepen discussions, inspire reading interest, and support virtual connections to books and authors. Easily share and include in your instructional plans, newsletters, and social media.

Literacy Celebrations

Don't forget to explore our newly added November Timely Topics.

For more, see all of our Virtual Teaching Ideas.

Best Wishes,

The TeachingBooks Implementation Team

NewsBank November Special reports


November 2020

NewsBank’s Special Reports are news articles, images, maps and other useful content grouped for convenience under specific topics and themes. They enable users to quickly locate information while helping them gain better insight into current global issues and events.

Following is a listing of ones that may be of particular interest at this time.

November Topics
U.S. Presidential Election - 2020
World Health - Coronavirus
Native American Indian Month
Military Family Appreciation Month
Issues in the News
Mental Health

Additional featured Reports covering current issues and events
World Economics
World Politics and Government
World Environment
Education Around the World
Science and Health in the News

Each Special Report features current and retrospective coverage with new articles added daily. They constitute a unique value to your users and are included with your NewsBank subscription. There are over 60 Reports to be sure the information you need is always available.

Special Reports are easily accessible from the left side bar on your online resource menu page, on search screens and the Other NewsBank Products link in full-text newspaper products.

Please view and share this video with others. It shows you how to find Special Reports, what they are and how they can be used.

As always, we welcome suggestions for new topics of interest to you and your users for additional Special Reports, as well as the names of other people that should receive these message each month.


Phyllis Comrie

Vice President, Analytical Marketing

NewsBank, inc.

Among Us

One way to gain student interest is to connect with what interests them. The game Among Us is the latest craze for teens. A an amazing librarian out of NYC shared something that she did with this- I hope that it inspires you!

Congrats Beth!

Name: Beth Cuddy

Education Background:

MLS Syracuse University; MA in Journalism SU

What was your professional background before your current position?

I worked as a newspaper reporter for The Post-Standard for seven years.

Describe your current position:

I am an elementary librarian for a K-6 building in Auburn.

What do you like best about your work?

I love sharing stories with kids. There's nothing better than getting children excited about books. I think when a child makes the connection that reading is not drudgery, that child becomes a life-long reader.

What has been your biggest professional challenge during the pandemic?

I had to make the decision to step away this year in order to care for my 10-year-old son while he studies remotely. Like many families, we had to make the choice between health vs economics.

How are you seeing issues of diversity, equity and inclusion play a more prominent role in your work environment?

My district supported our training in conducting diversity audits of our collections. I recently completed the training through Library Journal, and although I'm not technically working, I am reviewing the collection and focusing on making equitable and inclusive selections when piecing together book orders.

What other organizations are you involved with?


What advice would you give to someone new to the field?

My advice if you work in a school is to let your administrator know what it is you can do and offer to the school. Many people do not really understand what librarians do and feel they need to assign extra duties as a result.

What software/web tools have helped you best pivot to remote work?

Screencastomatic, Canva, GSuite

Favorite blog or website:

I'm embarrassed to say it, but I check Twitter obsessively.

What is bringing you hope or comfort right now?

As much as I feel we are living in a dystopian hellscape, I do think we are seeing a resurgence in public engagement and what it means to be an active citizen.

What are you most proud of?

I and another librarian, Kelly Chambala, created a podcast called Strange Country and we're currently at 165 episodes.

What would you like to learn?

How to create a podcast that makes money.

Is there anything about you that others would be surprised to know?

I play bass and sing in the band A Cast of Thousands.

Thanks for sharing Beth!

Repurposing the Librarian: Using the Hybrid Classroom to Emphasize the Need for School Media Specialists

Here’s a link to the slide deck, and here is a link to a Google folder with all of Dani’s templates that she showed off during the session! If you have issues accessing these links, just email me.
Repurposing The Librarian: Using the Hybrid Classroom to Emphasize Need for School Media Specialists

ALA Community Engagement Grant Opportunity for Small and Rural Libaries

I'm hoping you can help me spread the word to school librarians about a grant opportunity for libraries in small and rural communities. Unlike many grants. this one is open to all types of libraries and they would love to have school participation.

In an effort to get all 650 of the $3,000 grants distributed, ALA has made the application process pretty easy and the fundable program parameters very broad. Money can be spent in just about any way that supports the project. And they have enlisted a group of Outreach Coordinators like me to answer questions and walk people through the process.

I know that many school librarians are at their wit's end right now and can't even look at another new thing but this may be just what others are looking for.

I am ready to work with people one-on-one or present to a group.

Here's a link to an announcement I created Please share widely.

All the best,

Annie Miller


Greenwich Free Library

148 Main St.

Greenwich, NY 12834

(518) 692-7157 /

Discovery Ed Network (DEN) Free Virtual Conference

Calling all Discovery Education partners! As an educator with access to Discovery Education Experience, you are automatically part of our Discovery Educator Network (DEN) and it is our mission to connect you to digital content, learning opportunities, and your most valuable resource — each other.
Join fellow DEN members for instructional inspiration at our reimagined, annual DEN Fall VirtCon. Access on-demand and live professional learning experiences designed to allow you maximum flexibility and choice. Learn practical, creative, and effective ways to ignite curiosity and support teaching and learning in any environment.

Learn More & Register »

Flexible On-Demand Resources

Each morning, you’ll receive a daily notification with instructional activities, resources, and live events to connect you to your:

  • World through curated high-quality content
  • Students by accessing student-centered and equitable learning experiences
  • Community through sharing best practice with other educators
  • Professional growth through on-demand and virtual support

Live Events with Your Community

Each evening, go live to connect with the Discovery Education team and educators from around the globe for Q&As and a sneak peek behind the scenes.

  • Monday, November 16: Go Behind the Scenes of Experience with the Discovery Education Content Team
  • Tuesday, November 17: Prepare Students for the Future of Work with the STEM Careers Coalition
  • Wednesday, November 18: Meet Your Community for a Showcase Showdown! Battle of the Best Experience Resources
  • Thursday, November 19: Get Actionable Professional Learning for All Teaching Environments
In addition to these events, there will be social media challenges and a virtual scavenger hunt!

For questions about this event, check out our Frequently Asked Questions. If you need further support, contact

We hope you will join us!

The Discovery Education Team

Building Self- Advocacy Skills

In partnership with NYLA, WNYLRC presents:

Advocacy Fundamentals:

A Virtual Series

Register here

This is a six part series focused on building advocacy and leadership skills, available to all library workers throughout New York State. Attend one session or attend all!

Join us for our second session, Building People's Self Advocacy Skills: An Introduction to the Right Question Strategy, held Tuesday, November 24th, 9:00 am – 10:30 am.

Presented by Luz Santana (she/hers), Co-Director of the Right Question Institute & Yeja Dunn (they/them), Program Coordinator for the Right Question Institute

You do not need to have attended the previous session to attend this one.

Led by representatives of the Right Question Institute (RQI), this session will ask library workers to decide for themselves the need to be involved in advocacy work.

Any library worker - from a Director with a Masters to the library clerk or volunteer - needs to feel their work is valuable and critical to their communities before they can expect others to understand and appreciate the library experience.

Libraries are foundational to a healthy community. We will use the Question Formulation Technique to explore the role of the library and library workers in making libraries flourishing and well-resourced public spaces.

Register here

Free STEAM Event Nov 5

Free STEAM Forward Event from Promethean

Thursday, November 5, 2020

From hybrid learning to augmented reality, teaching STEAM is evolving rapidly. STEAM Forward is an online conference that brings together innovative thinkers, bold creativity, and the latest trends in edtech, with virtual sessions on hybrid/remote teaching, technology integration, STEAM best practices, hands-on STEAM applications, and more.

Register today for the annual STEAM event on November 5th from 1:00-7:30 PM EST. Promethean will be bringing together innovative thinkers, bold creativity, and the latest trends in EdTech, with virtual sessions on hybrid/remote teaching, technology integration, STEAM best practices, hands-on STEAM applications, and more.

Topics included throughout the day include:

Arts & AR/VR

  • STEAM meets literature
  • Sketchnoting with Students
  • Augmented and Virtual Reality with the ActivPanel
  • Merge Cube AR for the Classroom

Coding, Makerspace & Engineering

  • Engineering: The Bone Bridge
  • Makerspace Design: Outdoor Dining, in the Winter?
  • EdTech & Airplanes

Hybrid & Remote Learning

  • Great Apps for STEAM Activities
  • Asteroid (Hybrid) Escape Room
  • Digital Bingo!
  • STEAM Based Learning in Virtual Classrooms


  • Chemistry & ClassFlow
  • Bring Your Content to Life: All About Ecosystems
  • Makerspace Design: Earth, Moon, and Stars!
  • Inquiry in the Science Classroom: Saving Sam

For more information, click on the link below to register.

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