Reading! Technology! Fun!


January 2014

Happy New Year! We hope that you had a relaxing break! Hopefully, you READ a lot during break, or maybe you need to make a New Year's READING Resolution? Check out this link for some ideas on how to do just that:

There are lots of things to look forward to in 2014 in the NPES Learning Commons! Our upcoming author visit, South Carolina Picture Book Award BLITZ, South Carolina Book Award voting, Digital Learning Day, a student teacher from USC, and so much more!

Are you planning some research or looking for a good read aloud or need help integrating a cool app into your classroom? If YES, please let us know! We would love to help!

Your Learning Commons Team,

Mrs. Byrd Fort, Mrs. Gobbi, and Ms. Burkett

Author Visit!

We are excited to announce that this year's author visit is Matthew Holm! Holm is the co-author and illustrator of the Babymouse and Squish graphic novels. These books are great for all ages and a wonderful way to introduce comic books and comic book writing in your classroom. Each classroom will receive a copy of one of his books to share and I will announce the visit to students when you come in for checkout this first week back to school. We have many of his books in our Learning Commons (they are always checked out though!). You can certainly get the books from a local book store,, or your public library. I bet many of your students already read and LOVE Babymouse and Squish - so, get ready for an exciting visit! An order form for books will go home mid-February and we will have some available for purchase the day of his visit. Matthew Holm will be at NPES on Tuesday, March 25. Check out the Babymouse website ( ) and Matthew Holm's website ( for more information!

Dav Pilkey and Jeff Kinney Webcast for Kids!

Check this out! Dav Pilkey (Captain Underpants author) and Jeff Kinney (Diary of a Wimpy Kid author) will be doing a LIVE webcast on Wednesday, January 15 at 1pm! You can register at this link: We will be showing it in our Learning Commons as well - maybe your class would like to watch it with us? If so, let me know!

Book Awards Announcement!

The "Oscars" of Children's Literature will be on Monday, January 27! This is when all of the American Library Association awards will be announced, including the Caldecott and Newbery medal winners for this year. Take a look at the trailer below...

ALA Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits, Youth Media Awards 2014 Trailer

Life Long Guidelines & Life Skills SPOTLIGHT!

Check out these resources!

Each month, I will highlight resources (books, websites, videos) that you can use to help you teach the Life Skills and LifeLong Guidelines for the week/month. You can add videos and other resources that YOU find to this Google Doc (or send them to me and I'll add them):

This month, we focus on organization, resourcefulness, perseverance, and courage.

Organization -

Teaching Everyday Study Skills (including how to be organized), Instructor magazine:

Best apps to organize your life (for you!) from Real Simple magazine:

Resourcefulness -

3 books about resourceful kids from the New York Times:

Books about brave girls and resourceful femails:

Perseverance -

Teaching perseverance:

Courage -

Books that build courage (from Scholastic):

Books about courage, recommended by Jim Trealease (author of The Read Aloud Handbook):

Please welcome Neely Swygert!

Mrs. Swygert will be interning (student teaching) with me in the Learning Commons this semester. She will be here 2 days a week starting January 21 - April 1!

Save the Date!

The Learning Commons has lots of great events coming up - be sure to mark your calendars!

January 22 - PAWS to Read at Pets, Inc. 3:30pm - 4:30pm

January 24 - Lion Cub Storytime 9am

January 29 - 100th Day of School Celebration

February 5 - Digital Learning Day

February 19 - PAWS to Read at Pets, Inc. 3:30pm - 4:30pm

February 21 - Lion Cub Storytime 9am

Week of February 24 - South Carolina Book Award Voting

March 3 - Read Across America Day / Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

March 5 - World Read Aloud Day

March 25 - Matthew Holm Author Visit

March 28 - Lion Cub Storytime 9am

Watch the newsletter for more dates and events!

NPES Virtual Learning Commons

The NPES Learning Commons is EVERYWHERE! Find us and be our friend!

FaceBook -

Instagram - @npeslearningcommons

Twitter - @mrsbyrdfort

Website -

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About Us

The Vision and Mission of the New Providence Elementary School Learning Commons is to ensure that students and teachers are effective users of ideas and information in regards to both print and digital resources. We strive to provide library materials and services appropriate to the curriculum of the school and to provide library materials and services that meet the information and recreational needs of the learning community and that will encourage and support Common Core State Standards as well as the 4 C's - Critical Thinking, Collaboration, Creativity, and Communication. We provide opportunities for collaboration between the Learning Commons Team (Teacher Librarian, Library Assistant, Technology Integration Specialist) and the Classroom Teacher to integrate information literacy, digital literacy, book love and technology into instruction.