Notes from the Hawthorne Library

A Monthly Report for Families and Teachers


Hello Everyone!

Eee gads! I had the February/March newsletter ready to go but forgot to push it out into the world - I think spring break derailed my best intentions. I hope you will take a moment to catch up on all the great things we've been doing during library instruction at Hawthorne these last few months!

Montana Treasure State Award Wrap-Up

In my last newsletter, I shared some information about the Montana Treasure State Award. Students in grades K-3 spent several weeks this winter learning about the five books that were nominated for this statewide program, which allows students the opportunity to reflect and think critically about a selection of picture books. After reading the five nominated books, our Hawthorne students voted for their favorite, and I submitted their votes to the Montana Literacy Association to be added in with votes from K-3 students across the state.

The results for Hawthorne School are summarized in the graphic below. They are very similar to the statewide results, which you can see at the link above; This Way, Charlie was the HUGE winner, both at Hawthorne and in the state of Montana. It was a super fun TSA year, and I really enjoyed sharing these books with your students! Be sure to ask your child which book they selected.

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After finishing up MTS, the Kindergarten students spent a few weeks reading and discussing books that provided opportunities to talk about good character. I was fortunate enough to receive a grant from the Helena Education Foundation this past December, and I used the funds to purchase books that support conversations around social and emotional learning. I loved sharing these stories of cooperation, perseverance, and kindness with our smallest hawks. Speaking of hawks...we spent a few weeks in April researching and learning our our adopted species, the red-tailed hawk. Ask your kindergartner what they learned about hawks!

First Grade

The first graders have been working on a really fun research project called "Crazy Mixed Up Animals!" Each student had the opportunity to pick two animals to study - one was the same as the animal they researched in class, the other was a new animal. We used World Book Kids to gather facts about each animal then created a BRAND NEW animal that had physical attributes of both. Our final product was an illustration of their creations. I compiled all of their illustrations into a on the image below to view!


Second and third grades also spent the majority of the late winter/early spring working on research. Ms. D's class and Ms. Novak's class focused on notable women (in honor of Women in History Month), while Ms. Bode's class focused on famous inventors. All students used the ABDO database to learn more about their chosen person. Ask your student to tell you a little about who they studied!

Ms. D's class created a class powerpoint with facts about the women they researched. You can view it by clicking on the image below!


We spent several weeks in February researching our adopted species, the red-tailed hawk. The 4th and 5th grade students used World Book Discover for their hawk research. Once we finished taking notes, each student created a Powerpoint slide in which they searched for an image of a hawk and shared one fact that they learned about hawks. For the final project, the students looked at the slides on the computers and created an artistic rendering that included both facts and art. I submitted these to the Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest Service as part of the Adopt-a-Species art/writing contest, and several of our students were featured in the Adopt-a-Species spring newsletter! You can read the entire issue here - I included a screenshot of the Hawthorne section below:
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At the conclusion of our hawk unit, the 4th and 5th graders spent several weeks learning about the Newbery Medal. We did a shelf searching activity, had a book tasting, and did an online scavenger hunt. There are so many great books including among the Newbery winners, and it was fun to see circulations increase as we got deeper into our study.

Speaking of award-winning books, a few weeks ago I had the opportunity to bring together twenty 4th and 5th grade students for a pizza party to celebrate their success in reading at least three of the books nominated for the Young Readers Choice Award! I love spending time with our awesome students. If you have a voracious reader at your house who wants to get a head start on next year's YRCA list, here is is!

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Summer is coming!

As the last day of school grows ever closer, it's a great time to make sure you know where all of your library books are hiding! The last day for checkout will be May 20th, with all books due on Friday, May 27th. If you've lost a book, please reach out via email - - to discuss payment options. In addition to the email notices that go out each week, I will begin sending out paper overdue notices. I greatly appreciate your assistance with this endeavor.

Have a great spring, everyone!

Hawthorne School Library

Hope Morrison, Librarian

MS in Library and Information Science

National Board Certified Teacher