Valley Ridge Reader

VRA Media Center News - December 2019

Tis' the Season to Be Reading

The Media Center is filled with new books and holiday cheer. Please use this newsletter to discover all the exciting literacy programs, reading challenges, and "Maker Opportunities" the media center has to offer throughout the year. You will find this newsletter posted on the VRA Media Center homepage. Past newsletters are posted at Media News.

Lego Challenge - Deadline Dec. 6

The VRA Media Center is participating in a Lego Challenge to help children in need. Use your Lego blocks to create a holiday ornament. Bring the ornament to the media center. Have your ornament photographed and pick up a sweet treat.You may leave your ornament for display or take it with you. The pictures will be uploaded according to the Lego Life App. Read all about the charitable benefits of your participation below.

LEGO® #BuildToGive turns creativity into gifts of goodwill for half a million children around the world!

For every LEGO® ornament built and shared, the LEGO Group will donate one LEGO set through local charity partners, giving 500,000 children around the world the chance to play. Here in the US, we are working with Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, Baystate Pediatric Hospital, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Toy Industry Association Toy Bank and Toys for Tots to help bring playful experiences to children who need them.

Hour of Code

We will celebrate Hour of Code with lessons on computer programming throughout the month of December. We will use laptops to code with Lightbot and The Grinch: Saving Christmas with Code. In addition there are holiday coding games on a site called Santa Tracker. The two coding games we are learning are Code Lab and Code Boogie.

We will also be watching the BrainPopJr. video on Computer Programing. During this video students will learn key vocabulary including algorithm, computer program, coding, command, debug and loop.

During WOW time older students will make a binary code candy cane ornament that represents their initials. Students will also be able to use laptops in the library to practice their coding.

Character Ornament Challenge

The media center is bursting with winter holiday stories featuring some of your favorite characters. Come by the media center, check-out a great holiday story and get an ornament for our Sweet Character Tree. Turn your plain ornament into a book character. Return it to the media center and enjoy a sweet treat! Before long our tree will be covered in book characters.

  • Read a winter holiday book and choose a fun character like Pete the Cat, The Gingerbread Girl or The Grinch.
  • Get a plain wood ornament (one per person) from the media center. You can choose from a man shaped or a round shaped ornament.
  • Decorate your ornament like the fun character you chose. You can choose to use markers or paint. You can glue things to your ornament, but no food can be glued on the ornament.
  • Write your name, teacher's name and book or character on the back of the ornament in pencil.
  • Bring your Character Ornament to the media center by December 13th.
  • The best ornaments will be put on our Character Tree and receive a sweet treat.
  • Hurry in to check out a book . We only have 100 ornaments for the challenge!

Our Numbers for November 2019

Number of Books Checked Out - 3,525

Number of E-books Viewed - 31

Open Access Visits - 1,150
Number of Class Visits - 81
Number of New Books and Magazines Added - 101
Most Check-outs by a Student - Danielle from Ms. Yarbrough's Class 38

Most Class Check-outs - Ms. Yarbrough 155

Most Check-outs by Grade Level - Fourth Grade 601

Middle School Check-outs - 225

Most Professional Book Check-outs - none (what's up with that?)

Most Check-outs by a Teacher - Ms. Francis 82

Battle of the Books Test Dec. 6

Have you read 10 or more Sunshine State Books? Are you in 3rd through 8th grade? Do want to be on the SSYRA Battle Team? Then you are eligible to take the Battle Test in the Media Center Friday, December 6. 3rd - 5th grade students will test at 8:40. 6th - 8th grade will test during their lunch time. All students taking the Battle Test need to have an SSYRA Permission slip signed. This test will help to determine our 2 teams. Each team will have 5 members and an alternate who will join us for practices and the battle.

Our Awesome SSYRA Readers

Grades 6-8

Sam G. - 15

Lily H. - 15

Sanjana - 10

Kruti - 10

Grades 3-5

Kira S. - 15

Trevor R. - 15

Maia P. - 15

Nathan L. - 15

Mihika C. - 15

Sophia I. - 15

Xavier P. - 15

Bridget W. - 15

Sree A. - 15

Mariia R. - 15

J.C. A. - 15

Danielle P. - 14


Thomas F. - 15

Richie D. - 15

Nolan M. - 15

Kason R. - 15

Emily R. - 15

Lucas V. - 14

Alexis S. - 13

Kayla B. - 12

Christopher T. -11

Joseph N. - 11

Lucas K. - 11

Nathan T. - 11

Brooklyn G. - 10

Capri G. - 10

Jessie T. - 10

For more information and a list of books, visit the VRA Media Website or see the link below. Names updated at the beginning of the month.

Bucks for Buttons

The media center has an awesome new button maker in the teacher work room. We will be offering button design rewards for students for 2 Hawk Bucks. Pick up your design template from the media center. Turn in your design and 2 Hawk Bucks to make a button on December 6, 8 and 13.

MackinVia Ebooks and Audio Books

On the go ... download the MackinVia App on your phone or tablet. Login to MackinVia with your student number including the 's' and your district password (same as I-ready and HAC). Select an ebook or an audio books then download the book to your device. Read or listen to your story and enjoy. If you don't know your username and password, you can request it from your teacher.

What will we be learning in media this month?

1. First Steps to Research

2. SSYRA Jr. Story Time - The Bagel King and The Little Red Fort

3. Hour of Code

4. PowerPoint Penguin Project

Our Awesome Volunteers - Mrs. Krum

Ms. Krum helps in the media center in the mornings when it is our busiest time of the day. You'll find her shelving books and helping students look for books and take Book Taco quizzes. She is quick to help out with projects and set up for lessons. She loves to read and is so knowledgeable about books since she has worked in libraries all her life. We love how we can count on her!

Thank You for the Veterans Day Letters

We had 15 participants in our Veterans Day Reading and Writing Challenge. Our letters were delivered by Mrs. Xanders to retired veterans.

Birthday Book Club

The Valley Ridge Academy Media Center’s Birthday Book Club is a wonderful way to commemorate your child’s birthday. Your participation not only enriches the library collection but allows you and your child to be personally involved in its growth. To take part in the Birthday Book Club donate one new undamaged hardcover book (not a board book). This book should be a book that your child enjoys and one that we don’t have in the media center already. You can choose a new book at the book store or a new book from the Book Fair. A quick check of our library catalog (Destiny) will tell you if we already have the book. If you would prefer, you may make a monetary donation of $15 and your child can choose from recently acquired books that are waiting to be put on the shelves.

The following is included with your enrollment;

- A special book plate placed inside the front cover of the donated book with your child’s name and birthday.

- A photo will be taken of your child with the book he/she chooses and will be displayed in the media center and online in the Valley Ridge Reader. This photo will be sent home with your child at the end of the year to keep and enjoy.

- Your child will be the first to read and/or check-out the book that he/she


For more information, contact the media center or fill out the form attached below.

Happy Birthday to our Book Club Hawks!

Valley Ridge Academy Media Center

The mission of the library media program is to ensure that students and staff are effective users of ideas, information and technology. Creating a foundation for lifelong learning and a love of reading is at the heart of our program.