The daily life of a Middle School Library Media Assistant.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Another Long Day

Another day of conferences all day and until 7:30 tonight. I finish up the November calendar, though I may still do some tweaking on it. I'm delighted that quite a few teachers tell me they love my creativity with the calendars. Process the new Ricochet River books the author brought in earlier this month. Process in the extra Chemistry and Physical Science and Earth Science books and rearrange and relabel the Chemistry shelves and reshelve all the books there. Hand out a lot of workbooks. Process magazines. Work the Scholastic Book Fair. Help pack up the Fair and rearrange all the tables in the library back to about their usual places, one superb teacher stayed and helped us put it back with a few students lending some Oly grace. Good to hear the sounds of teachers, parents and students all talking, lots of smiles and "Glad to meet you's" going around. I help a couple of teachers. I get in my Nanowrimo workbooks today and let Mr. S take a look at one. I talk to Ms. M about Mythology books and let her know she can send some kids down to get 19 of the large version that I've repaired in my 'new books for old' campaign, and we have 27 of the small version available as well. So, I work from 9am to about 8:30 pm with a short break for lunch and a short break for dinner. So, I'm off tomorrow - along with most everyone else there!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Conferences begin!

The election fair is just winding down and students eruditely discuss the merits of the primary election system. Our Thrasher magazine has returned! So I put in the new issue and put it back out on display. We thought it had been taken, but one of the aides checked it out to a student, holder and all! I help a student on a grammatical question of 'thru' or 'through'. I will begin to send out the new Channel One extra clips out to the teachers so they can see what other programs are available. They have a nice web site with lots of information. I process Mythology books with an aide, and we make room for them on the shelves, relabeling and moving other texts around. I sifted through the political displays that have been piled up in the magazine area to make sure that there are no magazines or books shuffled in with them. Processed new magazines, checked in a class set of books and let the teacher know he still had three checked out to him, printed barcodes for our substitute librarian to process books and cover them. Started putting together the new November bulletin board and we talked about the new job description worksheet that BJ received to make sure we get a good overall view of what the assistant library media folks do. I also work late during conferences since we won't be here on Friday, so we push a few extra hours tonight and more tomorrow to cover for that. I actually have a couple of students come back to check things out in the back here. 9am to 7:45pm, short break for lunch and dinner and back again tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Repairing through a Tuesday

Today I spent most of the day working on repairs. A lot of the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books just needed a bit of tweaking until they could be released, so I worked on mending tears, taping, whiting out remarks and yes, more back on the shelves throughout the day. My stack on the back counter wall for letting glue set is diminishing! We tried to get lunch together, and it seems we're always interrupted. Lisa got a phone call, BJ had to help students, I had to get up and help a teacher and find some information for a student. After lunch I started to barcode our replacement Mythology books, and when my computer was replaced, the barcode font didn't get over, so I tapped the lifering on my screen and sent a notice to tech services. Then I picked up some old inventory stuff from last June. We discovered that we had about 60 of the PHL Gold, that were not around. Though they were on the inventory, they had never been checked out since 2000 when they were first entered. Lisa decided that even though the barcodes had printed, we had never used them. So I got all the barcode numbers and deleted them off. Next I will go through the teacher's inventory numbers and get those down to actual counts. Mr. H finally brought his class in to get Brave New World. I also got in all the textbooks from the library and had them ready for my aide to put away. The best way to learn the bookstacks is to put stuff away. Then I had her labeling shelves for next June when books come back. I had a lot of kids come in today to get the French 2 workbooks to check out, and we only have six, so I sent an email to Ms. B to let her know we were all out. She sent back to clarify that we still had plenty to purchase, and I said 'yes, lots of those still here.' The Election Fair was still on today, so lots of students in and out, lots of activity. I helped with a class while a teacher had to take care of some other business. I also got to help a student find a book with some possible topics for her prose speech. I love working with the students and she picked two books to take home and look over. That made me feel good!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Election Fair

I drive in to see all the kids outside, some kind of fire drill, so I wait along with them until we are cleared to go in. Inside the library today and tomorrow there is an Election Fair. Classes review candidates, parties and measures while other classes come in and ask questions. Very noisy! But a good noisy. The volume speaks for the interest of the kids. I process in the new magazines, take the teacher copies to the mailroom. Helped at least 10 kids over the day get books. Added a new kid in and got him books off his schedule. Helped some other students looking for diversity books in the fiction section. Made room for the Davids that are all finished and labeled the shelves. Got workbooks for a few students. I worked on the repairs for the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books and they are coming nicely. Ms. S came by and needed a book, so I got one of the ones that I had completed and she thought it looked so much better than it had before. Ms. T came and changed out my computer. I now have Vision so I can see in real time what sites the computer classes are on. I spend some time going back and forth, checking out the kids, seeing what the program can do. Take down the old bulletin board from Teen Read Week from outside the workroom door.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Today when I get in it's just a few minutes away from our evacuation practice. So I head back and work on some shelf space for the rest of the science books. Our group does really well with practice, and we find a boy who's lost his group, so I help him find where he's really supposed to be. A glorious fall day with lots of sunshine, so a good time to do this. When I get back, I finish rearranging all the books (8 different sets) so I can fit in all the just processed science texts for special services. Then my aide and a teacher come in and work on covering the Davids. A spanish class comes in to pick up workbooks, but it's a new teacher, so I let her know that we do have a few workbooks to check out, but mainly the kids are to purchase them so they can write the exercises in them. Our check out books are for kids that really have no funds to purchase them. I spend most of the day working on the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books that I've been regluing, and do more gluing on most of them, though one is finished and I check it back in to the shelf. Most of the others need to be reglued on their spines where the signatures are attached to. Some have nothing left where they were supposed to be anchored, so I use hinge binders to build a new spine for them. Mr. Y comes to pick up the damaged and unprocessed science books, I help him take the two cart fulls out to his car and bring the carts back. Mr. C comes in and checks out a set of Journal of Finn Reardon. I put money from kids into their print accounts. I do the check-out desk and finish the Davids, checking in and out books, shelve the manga that have come back, go over the computer lab and that's about it for this week.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Energy Buzzing

Lisa comes in and asks me how the Nanowrimo meeting went Tuesday night. So, I let her know I had two students and two parents come in and it did take from 7-7:30. I had the kids get on the site and show their parents around. Answered a few questions, made sure they knew that "Homework is #1! Nanowrimo is secondary." I also left them my school number and my school e-mail address for any questions or concerns. I then went over to the Pantheon and listened to the last half of the orchestra concert, they were amazing. I started processing the magazines that came in late yesterday. I also made a new topper for the spinner rack since the old one said 'Check out what you missed over the summer!" to a more general "Back issues available for check out - ask for assistance on issues from January 2007 on" - more or less. The "Mole Song" went well on Channel One and we had several students hunting our 'mole' during the day. He was up with The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, aged 13 3/4 book. Mr.'s C, G, and M all have classes in the library this morning and it's a buzzing place. Kids working on posters, others gleaning stuff off the internet, talk swirling around the shelves. Gotta love seeing the kids all excited. Ms. T talks to her doctor and Lisa takes her down to the hospital. I let BJ and Ms. R know where they are both going. Mr. M calls over for Fahrenheit 451 and I get two class sets ready for him to check out. I also check in the books the kids bring back, Animal Farm and The Importance of Being Earnest. We have some help for the morning so I put her to work on the science books I was processing and she nearly gets them all completed. In between everything else I cover more David's. I go up to the front and work the book fair when BJ leaves and check in and out books, help a student pick a book from his reading list, go with our bookkeeper checking on some workbooks that may or may not have come in. I don't recall seeing them and there's nothing on the shelves. Back up the Trac-It files for the night and head for home.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Book Fair!

I come in and do some email checking and clean up my box. Then I break in the spines of the science books to add into our inventory since the department head wants two class sets of the three editions. The others I box up for Mr. Y to come and get and disperse to other schools. The Book Fair set-up has arrived and I help Lisa set up the tables and get out the books for display. This will run through conferences. Ms. K wants to run a video she took on her camera with her students singing about 'Mole' Day tomorrow, but it needs to get on a DVD. So I take it over to the tech crew and they work on it for me. I take Ms. K back her camera and let her know we're working on it. Mr. A comes in to see how we run the Channel One set up, so I show him, and then the videos we've played, and he takes one with him to see how it's set up. By the time school ends they have accomplished the transformation and Channel One will play it (yeah!) so we will run it tomorrow. I cover more David's then help a teacher, help students, check in Wild Children from a teacher and put them away.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tipping Pages

They say that cow tipping is fun, so I guess for librarians, you need to do page tipping! When a page has fallen out, we repair by taking glue and making a line down other paper, then carefully run the edge of the dislocated page (be careful to make sure you put glue on the right side!) through the glue, and 'tip' the page back into the spine. I do a bunch of the Precalculus as that is their main problem. Some books have one page, others up to ten pages that have come out, and most of the pages are ragged on the edges. I may trim some of that so they don't deteriorate further. I take the Biology - Pacemaker books and process 10 more since a student has come looking for one. Looking over emails I find a nice one on how Sprague shines as a great school, and the plans for evacuation test on Friday. We also get permission to ship out the damaged science books, so I box them up and get them ready to go. We also decide to process two class sets of the special services science books, so I will do another 30 each and send the rest off to see if other schools are short of these. I help a student with some Word formatting for a paper, get workbooks for others, look for a billed Algebra book for a student. I spend a lot of time with the David's today covering them and putting them on a shelf. I have my Nanowrimo meeting tonight and may attend the Orchestra concert when I'm done with that.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Just a Monday

Worked through the books I left a week or so ago, I had a lot of end paper gluing to do and now I checked through them all to see what other gluing they required. I brought in a small bottle to put glue into since the big bottle is getting too far down to reach. I take the books and do more gluing, checking in for use the few that don't need any other work. I have my aide put up Nanowrimo posters up around the school, she loved being able to walk all over. When she got back I had her barcode, stamp and number David Copperfield. Lisa got the number of Ebsco from me and we are able to change the subscription of American Photo to Popular Photo. Processed three new magazines, the December editions - the year is almost done! Helped numerous students and some parents brought in textbooks for their child. They also had 2 Language of Medicine books that students buy. I told them they'd have to check with the bookkeeper, that I didn't know if we refunded workbooks. Checked on the Science texts that came damaged and that are unprocessed since we haven't heard from anyone on what to do with them. Checked on a damaged Government Today book and Lisa thinks we will have the student work off the cost since it is growing mold and they do not have the ability to pay for it. Bookbyte doesn't carry it, nor the Northwest Text Depository, but Amazon has a couple of copies for around $22 and the publisher sells the new edition for $33. My aide comes back in since she had study hall with nothing to do and we finish the day covering David Copperfield. Mr. H comes by and will pick up Brave New World on Friday. I e-mail BJ and Lisa to let them know the class will be coming in. We are putting this new practice in place since last week a class came in and there was some confusion since they were not on the list of who was where in the library. We decided that I should let BJ and Lisa know when a teacher asks for texts, so they also know what's going on.

Friday, October 17, 2008

CIS anyone?

Today is an advisory day. I have a group in my lab, but they are the wrong group. The teacher is a sub so we work around it thanks to the group that was supposed to be here. The students need to check their personal information, add in their transcripts from last year and write in the 'My Plan' area on 'Self Knowledge', 'Research and Goals' and 'Education Plans'. A lot to accomplish. I look up log-in numbers, and help direct them on the website. Processed magazines today, covered Sir Gawain and all 70 of them are now done and on their new shelf. Promoted Nanowrimo and talked to several kids about trying it next month, made some more signs. I have three already signed up and looking forward to more! I've started to use some old 'tattle-tape' on the magazines. We can't use this kind on the books so I will use up these old ones for magazines. I helped students all day long with various requests for checking in, and out books - clean up my shelf by my desk, and proudly wearing my 'orange out' shirt for the game tonight and "0" earrings that I made this morning at home. Go Olys!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Signing up for Nanowrimo

I get my first kids to sign up for the National Novel Writing Month's Young Writer's Program - I set out some more posters for it and write an announcement for tomorrow. I process some magazines first and the picture on one of them is questionable - so I query Lisa and she suggests we ask one of the photo teachers to look at it. Ms. M suggests we go with a different magazine for next year. I think we will do that. Actor's Wheel of Connection goes out. I help my aide with covering Sir Gawain. The new computers are in the lab. I thank Ms. T for getting the computers to come up with the Young Writer's Program and she says she sent it on and they took care of it. I do individual requests all day long, checking in and out. I talk with Mr. R about setting up a Trac-It program for the yearbook kids and how to barcode and track the equipment. We get a cart load of American Heritage books in and they are fascinating. We decide to email the department to see if anyone wants them and Ms. O walks in and sees them and she wants them. We find a spot for Sir Gawain and start putting them on the shelf and Actor's Wheel has a spot at the end of the Business section and the front of the English section. Covering Sir Gawain goes on all day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Covering Wheels with Frequent Interruptions

Today I come in and work on processing magazines. Then on to covering The Actor's Wheel of Connections. One of our aides has brought in pizza and it smells so good! A student in the hall says "Do you have pizza in there?" Yes! That was nice of her. I do some rearranging of our magazine shelves since all our magazines to cut up have returned. I put the holders up on the top shelf above the math books and pull down an unmarked white box. It is full of Foundations of Algebra books in Spanish. Get students their math toolkits, help with various requests sprinkled throughout the day, books, workbooks, check in, check out. Get Journal of Finn Reardon ready for tomorrow and finish the AWoC books so they will be all ready to be picked up tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Speed Walking Seagulls

Today I walk in to find a couple of our aides trying to put away books in the dark. They couldn't find the light switch for back in the textbook stacks, so I show them where it is, back on the wall behind all the teacher materials. There are kids out in the hallway working on projects, I hear a girl say "O.K. Start speed walking now!" I check e-mails, Ms. C wants to know if we can get extra copies of her texts, so I send her the status. She decides she'll be O.K. this semester, but would like extras of World of Fashion Merchandising she needs for next semester so I send out an e-mail to the other schools. Ms. L wants to know if her acting books are in yet ~ not yet! I go back to processing Sir Gawain. I get a new aide! I love my aides! So, I show her the stacks and where everything goes, then she helps me with Sir G. I get a call from Mr. M and we need two class sets of Lord of the Flies, so we take a cart and she loads up the 70 books and brings them out. We finish Sir G except for covering, so I take her in the workroom and we roll out the contact paper and I show her how to cover. I check in Mr. M's students The Importance of Being Earnest and a few Animal Farms, and check out Lord of the Flies. I have her put away TIoBE and others, and back to covering. A set of students is in my lab writing stories, I hear something about seagulls, poor jumper and a song about Valkyries or some other ancient myth! Lisa brings a box, yeah! The Actor's Wheel of Connection has arrived. So, I put everything else aside for now and tackle them. Get them on the computer, barcodes printed, and start stamping and numbering. Lisa comes over and we talk about World of Fashion Merchandising. I haven't found copies yet from the other schools, and we look at the copyrights to see that most of ours are very outdated, 1998, four new ones from 2003, so every five years, and we wonder if there will be a new edition. I poke around on the book sites, nothing, but find an article about the author that she is putting together a new edition coming out March 2009. So they will think about purchasing new ones next year if the budget allows. I go back to the Actor's Wheel. Lisa has to leave early, so I go around checking the room, pushing in chairs, shooing the kids over to my area since the green lab is reserved for homework club. The new InFocus machine is still on, and I find the remote to turn it off. Put away stuff, help out kids, I probably average about 12 individual requests a day. I'll have to check on that. Lock up. Cover one more Actor's Wheel and I go home for the night.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Calloo! Callay!

Get in this morning to more boxes in the workroom. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight hath arrived as well as the French 2 workbooks. I move the French 2 workbooks onto shelves. I e-mail teachers and receive a "Calloo! Callay!" about Sir Gawain. I process the new magazines that have arrived and decide to e-mail one of our administrators about our missing October Thrasher since the new November issue has arrived. I let her know the missing holder was around $15 and the magazine cost $4. I bring out the toolkits for the Foundations of Algebra, but no one shows up to get them. Our bookkeeper comes in and we go through the invoices I pull off the boxes so she can make sure she's got them all accounted for. I get my items for the Young Writers Program for Nanowrimo, an awesome poster plus 2 others, stickers and buttons. I craft a new bulletin board for the workroom door on the Teen Read week - Books with Bite. I help a dozen or so individual student requests. I set up a couple of aides to break in the spines on Sir Gawain and put the barcodes in the back. I move shelves in the back for Beowulf and David Copperfield. I notice that a couple of shelves are falling down because they don't have proper pins in supporting them, so I go and get pins, move books so I can set the pins in, and reset them. I renumber shelves for them, and also for Biology and Chemistry since I hadn't before. I find a problem as a student wants to join the Young Writers Program, but the computers at school won't let us access that site. I send lifering tech help to Ms Taylor. I finish the day working on Sir Gawain as he will be needed next month.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Grading & Inservice days

October 9th: I check the bus DVD for Channel One, it loops every 18 seconds and has no sound. I take it back to the administrator that brought it. The rest of my half day (2 hrs, 53 mins) I work on our repair pile. Tipping in pages from the Precalculus books and hinge gluing for the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books. I have a nice pile sitting to dry by the time I leave on my desk, and another set on the workroom counter.
October 10th: Our inservice day and I go with BJ to Liberty Elementary to learn more about book repair and Insignia. Two wonderful ladies from the Salem Public Library share their skills, insights, and professional knowledge about keeping our collections going. They give us handouts and the items they are currently using. They were very wonderful and I wish they could have been with us all day! We talked about Insignia (the library program) and then we could stay for a training on the video streaming we now have available. I also got to see a demonstration on the Smartboards - which I'd heard of, but hadn't seen yet. A very productive day.

The Sound of Hands Clapping

October 8th: Last day of school this week. I start today processing magazines, the new Asimov's has come in and I notice that our Smithsonian subscription is a donated by a couple down near Eugene, so I give the outside wrapper to Lisa so she can send a thank you to them. I also do a new Time and People magazine. I go back to covering books, assist individual students. Checked out some teacher materials. Talked with another teacher about a student who might be a good aide for me back in textbooks. I miss my aides from last year! Checked in a class set of Journal of Finn Reardon. Get all the Understanding Movies all covered, so I move them to their shelf and adjust it. I set up David Copperfield in Trac-it and print out the barcodes for it. Tried to find a book for a student. A teacher brought in some materials to process and I got them all done and checked out so she could have them tonight. Today, I heard a class all clapping down the hall from some nearby room. It made me smile.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Ricochet Author

October 7th: I put the Mythology books back on their shelf after checking them in. We had a substitute come in looking for something to do so I showed her how to cover books with contact paper. I attend our monthly classified meeting with BJ at 10:00. The Environmental Science class comes in and checks out the new book. Ms. C brings in a bunch of teacher materials and I process them for her. Covered two new books for a student who wanted to check them out for the weekend. Restacked surplus boxes from kids coming in and looking for a certain set of books they had accidentally packed. Got in the new math toolkits, put them on a shelf, they'll be needed on Monday. Rearranged shelf to get ready for my next project, organizing the teacher materials. The author for Ricochet River, Robin Cody, is coming in to swap out editions. I pack up 34 of the old copies and he will bring in 34 of the new edition. He swaps them out, and I forgot to withdraw them from the computer, so I do that by hand. It would have been easier to withdraw them off the barcodes before I packed them! Good thing Lisa caught that! Covered more Understanding Movies, and work on the announcement for Monday that I'll be hosting Nanowrimo next month. I also e-mail Jenny to set up a parent/student information meeting for the week after next.


October 6th: Sad very used copies of Mythology books :( to Happy Repaired and Ready to check out copies :)
I go through the Mythology books and check the hinges, they came out very well! I help a couple of students, and a teacher. Lisa comes by and asks "Did you see your presents?" I have 9 new boxes of texts in the workroom. I had walked right by them and never noticed from the path I took around the workroom table! David Copperfield has come in and at long last, the new Environmental Science texts. They are beautiful! David won't be needed until December since Mr. S came by while we were opening boxes, but he will need some Prentice Hall Literature Platinum for 6th and 8th period today. I cart them up and have them out by my desk for later. I e-mail Mr. W and let him know the texts were in and I would start them immediately and let him know when they were done. There were a couple that we need to ship back since they arrived damaged, but I finish the 38 others and let him know they are ready to go. I check out both classes for the PH Lit Platinum books, help more students. I finish up the Mythology books and they are all ready to be traded out. I finish the day processing Pay it Forward, make room on the shelves and tuck it in.

Friday, October 10, 2008


October 3rd: I get into work this morning and Lisa needed help cutting up a bunch of cards she laminated, so I bring scissors and cut the rest all up and rubber band together. We're on assembly schedule for homecoming and I supervise the library since BJ is the cheer coach and needs to be at the assembly and Lisa wants to see. The library is very quiet, only about half the kids we usually have in - so that shows kids were interested in homecoming this year. I'm wearing my 'orange out' shirt. I check out some books for students, do a couple of searches for them as well. We had an old puzzle from last year the kids had taken nearly all year to put together, one of those photo composites, and I decide it's time for a new one. I break it all up and have a student go back to the puzzle closet and pick one out. When Lisa comes back I tell her I got out a new puzzle she looks at me 'Did you break up the old one?' Yes, I happily tell her. 'I was going to frame it! The kids worked so hard on it!' So now I want to take it home over the weekend and redo it ~ oh well! I hear that Beowulf won't be needed until next year so I get out my repair items. I check in a bunch of Journal of Finn Reardon's and check in Algebra Connections V1 and hand out the V2. A student comes in and her water bottle opened in her pack and completely soaked the bottom inch of her health book. I take it into the back, put it in protective plastic (to not get the other books wet) and heave about 7 heavy science books on top of it. It'll take a week or more to completely dry and should be nearly wrinkle free since we got to it while it was still wet. Some magazines come in and I process them, then spend the rest of the shift repairing Mythology books. Lots of hinge gluing that I sit to dry for the weekend.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Pirate Librarian

Ahoy there, ye Spraguey seafarers! It be Pirate Day since the Homecoming Theme be 'Treasure Island' - and I be dressed to the hilt with a fine piratey shirt ('borrowed' from me son with the assistance of his fine wench) and me black pants tucked into the top of blue slouch boots, with pen, pencil and paper from the laces dangling from me shirt, just in case the Cap'n be needing some spellifyin' in the log book. I wear me leather frog (def. 3: a belt to hold a sword or weapon), but not allowed the steel, I wield today a razor sharp wit and keenness to learn. I bring on board me Pirate Dictionary and remindin' the lads and lassies that 'All Pirates Read Banned Books' since this still be 'Banned Book Week.' This here be the 2nd of October, with winter off the port side and the books still feeding the crew's noggins! I be on the lookout for the shipmates carrying Algebra Connections V1 and here the corsairs come and we make a trade for V2, Fair winds to them all! One of the lassies says her CD should be keelhauled and I track her down to ascertain the place said CD has taken the scurvey - but I dredge through it and spot no taint to the disc. Another mate comes in with a new student handle and I change the ships record. Some new sea rats come aboard and I put them on the roster. There be Of Mice and Men aboard so I process them and stow them below decks. I empty the last cask of Permabound books, aye, the crew should like this one, Pay it Forward, and heave it up on the counter to be processed. The stowage be gettin' in the way of the computer hands, so I handsomely haul the unprocessed science books out of their way. Lists from the other Pirate Librarians pillaging the sea of knowledge send scrolls of books they claim we have as swag. That be no way to treat our fellow salts. I be no blaggard! So I take a lookout for La Dama del Alba, off the Spanish Main, but though I enjoin me hearties to help, not a spot of her we find. Gangway! Beowulf has landed on board and I smartly turn to and begin to process the ancient deeds. Dead men do tell tales, and we have the book booty to prove it! I pipe in to Beowulf's bosun that his treasure be here. I see a fellow shipmate waving the Jolly Roger down the halls heading' aft, and some mighty fine pirates comin' in to the library durin' the watch. I be off now for shore leave, climbin' into me jollyboat, though some say I'm just a little dinghy. A hearty 'Yo-ho-ho and Godspeed' to all who sail the good ship Sprague today! (Thanks to the Pirate Dictionary - Tide-mark Press)

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


October 1st: A teacher was in the computer lab today having her students check out the presidential candidates. I told her about all the magazines we currently had on them. I worked out a nifty idea for holding the magazines on the bulletin board without stapling or otherwise making them inaccessible - paperclips! I stapled the hook of the paperclip, then bent out one of the sides to serve as bottom rests and another at the top so the magazines wouldn't flop over - genius! Obama, McCain and Palin all in Time and People magazine and all still available to be checked out. I also put a arrow squiggle to October 14th - the last day people can register to vote for the election. A teacher at the staff meeting had mentioned that, so I added it into the calendar. Underneath the calendar are Pay it Forward and Beowulf waiting to finish being processed. Checked out more books and more Animal Farm, responded to e-mails as appropriate and filled out the inservice form for next Friday. I checked on the status of the new Environmental Science books - ordered but not here yet. A student wanted help with the computers to go on SK Online, so I escorted him around the corner to the SK Online room. Finished Martian Chronicles, got Algebra Connections V2 ready to be handed out tomorrow. Students trickle in all day, a book here, another book there. Withdrew more Biology - the Dynamics of Life books, got the phone numbers for the Channel One service reps since two of the TV's aren't working in classrooms. Over lunch, we get the giggles and enjoy a good laugh. Our spirit for today is dressing like the 80's, so I wear a 3/4 sleeve shirt - the best I could do!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Backpacking Spirit

September 30th: Today was sport day, to wear your favorite jersey or whatever, and since my favorite sport is hiking I wore my hiking boots, jeans, Denali National Park shirt, my compass around my neck with my safety whistle off a caribiner on my belt loop. On the textbook window I had my day pack, a couple of topo maps, a photo album of my daughter and I backpacking in Alaska and a couple of books. John Muir's Alaska and my current read A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson. I checked some more of the gluing on the Mythology books,did some additional work on several more and got a couple more back on the shelf. Checked out The Importance of Being Earnest for two classes. Packed up some more books for the surplus mountain in the workroom. I covered more books and monitored the computer lab and taught a student how to paste pictures into documents. Since it was the end of September, time for a new A/B calendar. I decided to go with a patriotic theme. The students here are really getting into the presidential race and I wanted to highlight that for this last month before the election. I take down all the September stuff and get the blue and red background up. Then, I wanted to do stars with the dates and my initial plan was all wrong, so I ended up staying later to get things reconfigured and came up with a great set up. So, I leave with October first up as an A day, just so kids know in the morning and head home 45 minutes late. Goodbye September!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Banned Book Week

September 29th: I worked on my 'Banned Book Week' bulletin board outside the workroom and pulled up the 'challenged' books from 2008. I wrote them up with why they were challenged and posted that on there also. It's also Homecoming week for us and I come in Junior color (black) since I am working the CIS Advisory with the Juniors at the moment. Checked out the new Physics books to a class and a set of TM's (teacher materials) on Physics as well. The gluing I did on Friday was great and I just needed to put wings on the Mythology books, check them back in (they were in 'repair') and put them on the shelf. We got in extra books from North HS and I processed in Foundations of Algebra Year 2 Volume 1 and Street Law. These are the easiest to do, find the title in our system, scan the barcode, enter book number, condition and school they are from, and after the first one it's just enter, enter, enter. Easy! I e-mailed the teachers to let them know that we now had more copies. Got in some new Journal of Patrick Seamus Flaherty and tucked them into our overflow shelves from the regular library. Cleaned up the worktable. Pulled out 65 World Literature books for a block class and checked them out to students. Assisted a teacher with TM's. Checked out a class set of Animal Farm. A teacher brought in a box of Physics TM's from the box of stuff they got this summer, so I processed it, let him know that some had been processed and had been checked out to him, but they were now checked in. Did a book repair for a teacher, and lastly attended a mandatory meeting for all staff that worked after 2:45. One other thing I do at the end of my shift is to back up our Trac-It program. Pull open the folder, drag out the old information, put in todays set, close and rename it. Just in case something happens to the program overnight. Goodnight!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

1150 pages of Art

September 25 & 26: I spend Thursday working on additional texts that were ordered. My favorite today has to be Gardner's Art Through the Ages. These are massive volumes, 1150 pages each and one of the books I look at and go "ooohhhh, I want to read this..." They are incredibly beautiful and kids check these out and take them home for the rest of the year. I have to laminate the covers and while I feed them through the laminator there's a flash of light and a teacher hurries away clutching a camera. I ask Lisa and she says "oh, he's always popping in to take pictures during the year." I carefully process and cover each text and inform the teacher that they are now ready to check out. I also process the CD/Roms that come with each one, and I voice concerns that they are just in paper sleeves. We discuss perhaps a better holder when it comes time to check them out. Every Friday is book repair day and when we don't have assemblies, it is CIS (Career Information System) advisory and I'm in charge of the lab next to me. This week the Juniors are putting together their transcripts from last year and entering them into the system. Then they also have to fill out three sections of 'My Plan' and write two to three sentences describing what they are doing and how that fits into their plans for after school. One fellow loves bicycles, so we talk about what classes he might take, avenues to explore in making his passion a lifestyle. Afterwards, Lisa ends up leaving for the day since her son has gotten hurt and BJ is also sick for the day. Our sub mostly covers books, and I check in on our aides making sure they know to read their shelves (each aide gets a fiction section and a non-fiction area they must keep in alphabetical or numerical order, clean and make sure their section has books right up to the front of the shelf). I put the our new number holders with their signs on top of the shelves (many thanks to woodshop!). I put up the 'fiction' and 'reference' signs up, then the '000' to '800' up for the nonfiction. I'm not quite sure where our '900' sign went! I had sent some metal book carts down to metal shop to get them rewelded. The carts were so wobbly even without books I was afraid they would collapse on someone. They are beautiful! Sturdy! Even spray painted! I also spend time repairing Edith Hamilton's Mythology books. They are very battered and by the time I leave for the weekend, I have a stack, edge taped, cornered and hinge glued with a weight on so that I will come back Monday to finish the spine ends with my wings! They will be beautiful! I also work on items for Banned Book Week that starts next week. I get to do the little bulletin board outside the back library door. I pull a list of the 'Challenged' books from 2008 (books that are not currently banned, but may be) and take the books that are currently in our library and textbook depository to highlight on the board. Caution tape anyone?

Friday, October 3, 2008

Corners and Wings, Oh my!

September 24th: I finish up the Respect for Acting books when I get in. We have these marvelous telescoping book shelves in the back. The ends and the middle are stable, but two sets in the front and three in the back are on gliders mounted into the floor. So we have eight shelves in a space that would normally only hold 5. When they're filled with books, you really have to put your weight into the handles to move them. Today I go into the English section (each department has its own area) and find the 'R' books and have to move a few sets of books over a bit to make room for the new Respect's. I relabel the shelves and sharpie in the new title on the end list. When we put books away at the end of semester and school, every book has a place so if we need to check if Bilbo really did turn in #872 of the American Pathways book, we don't have to search all 950+ of them to do it, just the one part of the shelf it should be on.
I am handed the new Exam Pro Views for one of the new science books, process them in (just five) and send out a notifying e-mail to the science department.
Our Highsmith order has come in and it's like amazing! Mainly book repair items and I'm excited to see what I need to make sure our collection stays usable. The corners are for the corners of the hard cover books, where they start to come apart after being pulled in and out of packs for a semester. The wings are for the ends of the spine, another prime area that takes a beating. I have a rainbow of colors for each of the texts that need serious help. Green for the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books for our 9th graders (that are mostly green colored); blue for the Prentice Hall Literature Platinum books for the sophomores (that are mostly blue); brown for the Calculus and Precalculus books, well beloved by the math department for their amazingly teachable approach and should have been retired a long time ago; red for the American Experience, the 11th grade literature text; clear for the books that need some help but aren't quite in any color code and orange for the Bienvenidos books. I have heard that the International Language department may be getting their adoption this next year, so before I put time and materials into these, I will check to see. We also get our Permacell tape that I use on the edges of the hard covers and elsewhere, and our new tape for the magazine ends for 2009. I decided to get a deep blue. I'm in corner and wing heaven! I go over the invoice and check in each baggy filled with book repairing joy. About 200 sets.
One of the Physics teachers come by and they will pick up texts in the next day or so, so I put a couple of class sets on a cart for the morning. The Calculus kids come in and request a second copy of their texts. They keep one in class and one at home so the books don't get so damaged going back and forth. We have them sign a 'second text out' slip and hand the book out. Our Youth & Law teacher doesn't have enough books for his class, so I e-mail the other high schools requesting 10 extra copies. Our old Teacher Librarian, the incredible Claudia has called from another school. She is retired now and is doing some sub work and has forgotten how to print barcodes for textbooks so I give her directions.
My lovely new daughter-in-law comes in for a tour as I get off work, so I show her around the school her hubby went to. He graduated in 2005. She helps me finish the second coat of light blue paint and does the finite touch ups around the shelves and doors. I invite her over for dinner.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Acting French

September 23rd: I'm just starting to note down some of the stuff I do, and today we received Discovering French texts in from another school. I have to enter them into our program, and check out both year 1 & 2 to our French teacher waiting for her to come and get them. We get in one of our new acting books, Respect for Acting by Uta Hagen. I process the books and since they are hardback with covers, I have to laminate the 35 covers by putting them through the laminator, which seems to take forever feeding them one by one. Since I'm there, I also laminate the small pile of things that teachers have left for us to laminate when the machine is on and we have time. There was about 12 of them. Back at my desk, I carefully crease the laminated covers, tape them with heavy duty strapping tape, and go down the row. I get about half of them all done and completed. One of our aides needed something to do earlier, so I hand Bilbo off to him and he finishes processing the Hobbit books. I find when he's done that he's mixed up numbering books with the barcode tag numbers, so we (Lisa and I) carefully peel off the barcodes and put them on the right books. I'm thinking that was my fault for not telling him about that. I don't think he's processed textbooks before. Time to paint! After work, I put on grubs and put a second coat of paint on the light blue wall, but don't quite get it all done before my paint can runs empty, it's about 5 pm, and I clean up and leave it for tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Magazine Work

September 22: I spend today getting the magazines all straightened out. We've ordered in some new titles and gotten in all new holders for the display copies since the old ones were nearly falling apart. I take the copies and process them on Insignia, adding in new titles or new issues, putting in a 'tattle tape' metal strip, barcoding and taping the side of the magazines with issue name and date. I put new name tags on the display case, and rearrange the spinner rack so each issue has its own slot, except for People, Sports Illustrated and Time that get an issue every week, they get a couple of spaces. I told a student about the new Smithsonian when she saw my screen saver was Stonehenge and that they had an article on the first excavation there in a long time. I did a bulletin board outside the workroom door on all the magazines we carry now. I was gratified to see that students did look at the display since several front cover figures were sporting new mustaches a few days later. I spent the last part of the day processing Hobbits.