The daily life of a Middle School Library Media Assistant.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Calendar Day

Friday October 30th: Today I spent a lot of time taking off all the old calendar and putting up the new one. I used a lot of my November stuff from last year, so that went well. The background I changed to leaves and it turned out well. Did checking in and out, cleared a student who was moving. I had come in early because I had to pick up my Mom from Rehab and meet with the nurses on care, so Mrs. H said 'sure you can come in early and leave early' so the day just flew by! She is so sweet! Right before I left, she told me to come with her and we had our pictures taken for the yearbook by Mr. M's staff. Good thing I wore a nice shirt today!

Little Book Projects

Thursday October 29th: Finished up covering books. I also transferred over the books that were out to the now retired Mr. M to Mr. H. Four pages worth! Ms. K came in looking for an ExamView Pro for the Physical Science with Earth Science teacher resources and she couldn't find one, so I went back and found one for her. Looked through all the art panals we have in the back to have an art theme for the library this month. A parent needs to replace a text and I gave her the ISBN number so she could search for one. I let her know that these were fairly new texts, so the odds of her finding one cheaper were slim. So we'll see if she does. I had a stack of books waiting for me to work on, just little odds and ends of stuff that needed to be cleaned up. Some needed to be cleared from billing and my Main Frame ID would again, not let me in! I sent a 'life ring' to the tech department that again, I had 'prohibited access' on my screen, so frustrating! They usually fix it, I can get on, then a few days later when I access it again, it locks me out! Last time they even gave me a new password! Argh! I also had a student today that needed some homework help, so she pulled up a chair to my desk and sat across from me and I helped her out a bit, but she did most of the work all by herself. Some kids just need to know someone is watching and there to help. She was happy she got it all done. That was a nice moment.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


I only have two other American Experience books left in my repair pile. They just needed some extra gluing and they'll be done tomorrow! Then I get to load up another cart and start with a new batch. We had a parent come in today who got a bill for damages to a Physical Science with Earth Science book. He wanted to see the actual damage and it is currently checked out to another student. I took him up to administration and he talked with one of our administrators and decided he'd have his student come into the library for a couple of mornings and work off the charge. So the student will learn something about the library and hopefully take that with him. We had the little preschool kids in today and trick or treat in the library. They were so cute! I loved the little girl with the batgirl costume since Mrs. H's outside world name is 'batgirl' (due to batgirl being the librarian in Gotham City Mrs. H tells the litle girl). I emailed a publisher for prices on The World of Fashion Merchandising. I told him 10-15 copies and he needed a definite number. So, I asked for 2 quotes, one for 10 copies and one for 15. *sigh* We had a student, the same one from the other day that was really pushing my buttons. So, I caught him today again looking at gamer sites, so I spoke to him. Then I told Mrs. H about him and she went to talk with him. He ended up going back to class and talking with his teacher and she will be talking to us about him. We always want our kids to be successful, but he needs to follow the same rules that any other kid has to follow. I think we made some positive connections with his teacher and hopefully things will be better from here on out. I spent the rest of my time covering books. Finished up the Freakonomics and the First Aid books.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

NaNoWriMo Meeting

So, my husband took the van today, and again the Miata breaks down on me on the way to work. I can't believe it! Mrs. H again drives over and picks me up. I had made it about halfway, so I was a lot closer! She is such a sweet person! Checked in and out books today, processed three teacher magazines and Time and Newsweek for the library. Had our aides work on getting the Sprague yearbooks straightened out. More work on The American Experience and the new corner repair technique turned out fabulous! I showed it to Mrs. H and Mrs. M. They were both impressed! I made room for our new novel sets: The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Someone Named Eva, The Wave, Freakonomics and I Have Lived a Thousand Years. Since I didn't have a car, I just stayed after school for my Nanowrimo meeting at 7pm. I had one student come to the meeting and I set her up with a workbook and gave her some information. She's on the soccer team, so she won't be able to come the first few weeks, but she still is very excited about it and will work on it at home. I'm very excited for her!

Of Mice and Sterility

Monday the 26th: We got to thinking about the fact that we were starting to clean the keyboards, but hadn't thought of cleaning the mice! So when we get a chance to clean, we'll make sure the mice get cleaned up too! Barcoded a teacher text. Processed People and PC World magazines, checked in and out books. Put lots of money in print accounts and spent most of the day working on The American Experience repairs. I tried a new technique I learned in the book repair class at the conference. You take a chewed up corner and make book particle board and form it into the book corner, wrap with waxed paper and clamp it for the night. We'll see how it turns out tomorrow!

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Lost is Found

I've been wondering where one of our flat carts has gone off to and I found it last night as I left the orchestra concert - it was just sitting in the commons off to the side - I wonder how it got there? The cello quartet was amazing and I asked Mrs. H (via email - she is sick) if we could have the quartets come and play in the library once a week. That would be fabulous! We had homecoming assembly today, so we opened the library to 140 kids and I patrolled them as they hung out. It was fun to talk with and see what they're doing and watching a few LOL cats is always good for a laugh. Finished up the new-to-us Foundations of Algebra books today, worked on repairs, and seemed to just be answering a lot of questions all day. Our French teacher wants some of the activity workbooks returned and wants some vocab/grammar workbooks in their place. We checked the PO# and found that we never paid for the activity workbooks, they were just a gimme from the publisher. So we will see what we can work out.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bien dit!

Finally the rest of the new French workbooks and teacher resources are here! I processed in the teacher resources and unpacked all the workbooks. Ms. B will be in tomorrow to let me know how she wants them processed for her kids and if she wants them covered or not. Had to play a DVD this morning for Advisory and had juniors again in my computer lab this morning for updating their CIS transcripts. The computers worked fine and they got a lot of work done filling in classes, credits and grades. Had students bring back Student Tape Manuals for refunds, handed out Bienvenidos workbooks. Checked out a student who is moving out of town, he brought in all his books and he is clear to go from our part of the checklist. Got in a ton of magazines for processing today, three for teachers, and BMX Plus, Orion, Smithsonian, The New Yorker, Shape, Shonen Jump, National Geographic Traveler, Spin, Sports Illustrated, there were a lot! Also unboxed and began to process the Foundations of Algebra Year 2 Volume 1 that were sent over from South. Put money in print accounts today, checked in and out books and stayed after work to be the adult supervisor for the Manga Club since Mrs. H is under the weather. The library was buzzing all day long and I love it when students are engaged, excited and getting work done! Well said!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Yeah! Books!

We have boxes! Lots of boxes full of books to process! I spend most of the day working on them with Mrs. H's substitute. We got in The Wave, Freakonomics, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Someone Named Eva, I Have Lived a Thousand Years, Working with Young Children and First Aid/CPR books! Lots to do! I entered in all the new ones and printed up barcodes. I had to redo a bit of the Working with Young Children teacher materials, but it looks better now. I also let Ms. S know that those were all ready for her and students by the end of the day. Got in one Hot Rod magazine for the library and processed it in. Tracked down the Bien dit! workbooks that we've been waiting for. I called the publisher and found out their ship date and when it was signed for at Central Stores, so I gave all that information to CS, and they said yes, they were in, but had never been sent to us, so they were on their way! Yeah! I then worked on starting to cover the paperbacks we got in. Had quite a few students come in to get books that they already had checked out. I sent out a few '2 Textbooks Out' slips for their parents to sign. A very busy day and hopefully we will get all the books ready for checking out tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Diabetic Vampires

Ms. M comes to me to tell me a kid checked out a book on someone with diabetes and brought it back because it was about vampires. Mrs. H came back and said yes, it is about diabetes! Too funny! Checked in and put away The Arrival and Immigrant Kids from Ms. O. I had one book with a funky bar code, so I fixed it. I also had to fix a barcode from a Calculus book that was turned in. Mrs. S called and asked if I could look up a book from a student that graduated in 2005! I looked and no, it wasn't there. Mr. W needed me to send him a PO#. I had put a book into the mail, and after a week it was still there because the delivery driver needed a pick-up ticket from Mr. W before he could pick it up! So, he is sending that. Checked out The Adoration of Jenna Fox and checked in Their Eyes Were Watching God. Processed five teacher magazines and Time, Newsweek and Popular Photography for the library. Checked out Abraham Lincoln's DNA for Mrs. A's genetics class. We had a chance to get more Foundations of Algebra books so I immediately pounced on getting the Year 2 Volume 1 books that we are always so short of. I then sent an email to our math Department Chair to see if she wanted any of the others. I also printed up some posters to put around school for National Novel Writing Month and had the aides tape them up around school. My announcement didn't get read, so I wrote and asked if they could read it tomorrow and Thursday. I worked on more of The American Experience, doing some additional taping and gluing. Can I say again, I just love my job? It's my sweet spot!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday, Monday

Today was an easy day, came in and got The Adoration of Jenna Fox ready for Mrs. G's students and checked them out. Got the next class set ready for tomorrow's class as well. Also got ready Abraham Lincoln's DNA ready for Ms. A's genetics class. The first time they've been checked out so I'm excited about them. Handed out various books today, checked in a bunch of Their Eyes Were Watching God. Spent most of the day on repairing The American Experience. The gluing I did last Thursday dried nicely and I worked on gluing other spots and some were ready for taping and back on the shelf. I wrote an announcement for Nanowrimo to advertise for next month and got a meeting date set for a parent information night as well. I also let Ms. W know that I would not be going to Italy and wouldn't need to use my vacation for that week.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Like a Flash

I know you're all thinking that I must be writing about a flash drive, but no! Today was an Inservice/Grading day so Library Media Assistants only work a half day, so for me that means just under 3 hours, but hey, 3 hours is easier to clock! Processed in the 60 Analysis books that came from South yesterday and got them onto their shelves, and then we got in our new Hunger Games books, a class set of 40 and I processed them and had to move three titles around so H.B could fit in their new home on the shelves in our novel section. I did a couple of repairs on The American Experience, and it was time to go!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Heroes in White Vans

This morning my hubby takes off and I didn't have the spare key to the other car! So, he played hero by getting back in our white van and bringing me keys. Then off to my mom's to pick up her suitcase and pack with clothes for her stay at rehab, and as I pull away from her garage, the car dies and refuses to start. I call Mrs. H to tell her I'll be in as soon as I can and she quips a "I'll come and pick you up!" and soon another white van with Mrs. H's smiling face pulls up and takes me into work. It's so nice to have heroes in your life :) When I finally got to work I had an e-mail from Mr. S that he'd like his class to pick up the Prentice Hall Literature Platinum books so I quick reply that they'll be ready, throw a class set on a cart and moments later they arrive and we check out the class set quick and easy. Mrs. P also needed books, the Prentice Hall Literature Gold books and with the set we just got in from Follett and Ms. M's wonderful repair skills, we had plenty for two class sets (and still some to spare!). Mrs. P came in with her class around noon and they were pretty excited to see the books were in very nice shape instead of the bedraggled Velveteen Rabbitish books that have been hutching on the shelves. Finished up comments on the science books. I could still do some more tweaking - isn't it funny how you go along then think, 'wow, this could be added for more clarity' - but I will do that later. Processed three teacher magazines and a Sports Illustrated and Seventeen for the library. Then I cleaned up the spinner rack with the older issues and straightened it out. Monitored the computer lab and told a student not to be sitting on a photo long enough for me to get a screen shot. He said he wouldn't, but it was in a forum post, again, I said, please don't look at it long enough for me to get a screen shot - I'm slow and not real quick. I'm happy to report that Thrasher was much appreciated today and I found it in two different places in the library. I did some repairs on The American Experience books, getting some spine gluing done and set. Then we got in our 60 extra Analysis Vol. 1 copies, so I got them ready to process in. As I cleaned out the green computer lab, I found a book shelf had broken a hook and was falling down, so I got some new pegs and fixed it, reading the shelf. Mr. B was nearby and leant a helping hand so most of the books didn't crash on the floor! Another hero for the day! I also checked out two students today, one off to the online classes, another moving over the mountains. Took in a 2 Textbooks out slip from a mom, checked in and out books, the usual - maybe I should call it CICO?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Thrasher's Back!

Processed in magazines this morning. Five teacher magazines and seven for the library. People, Newsweek, Time, The New Yorker, Teen Vogue, Discover and Thrasher! We used to get in Thrasher which is a teen skateboard magazine and when they left the magazine wholesaler, they got dropped off our list. So this year, I made sure we got a new subscription to them and yeah! Some of these kids will be so happy to see it! I put it back in its spot on the rack and I'll be looking to see when it gets read! I'm very happy since I had a lot of kids asking for it. Processed ten additional Bienvenidos workbooks off our new pile for check out. I checked out one, and also handed out a lot today from kids that bought their own. I helped a student look for his book and when we couldn't find it, suggested a 2 Textbooks Out slip for him to take home, and he did. I cleaned off the shelves by my desk, getting rid of some extra books and setting them on a cart to be put away tomorrow by our aides. Repaired a book on roller coasters. Spent most of the day working on cataloguing the science comments again. One more box of stuff to go and what we have on hand will be all accounted for. I keep finding other stuff as well and will need to clean up some more in Trac-it. The students were only here half day today as the sophomores did the PSAT test. There was a staff meeting in the library this afternoon, then it was pretty quiet for the rest of the day.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Never Mess with a Librarian

I cleaned up the boxes I had left from yesterday. Handed out Bienvenidos and Chem Lab Notebooks. Mrs. H left a tile on my desk that says 'Never Mess with a Librarian'. She had received them from her Chairing the OASL conference last weekend and she shared one with me and one with Ms. M. I checked out diversity books for the health project kids. I also packed up the old science books for surplus. Worked on more science comments for most of the day. Felt much better today!


I came in and sent off my evaluation for the PowerPoint class I took. Checked and answered e-mails. We received an e-mail from Mr. M that he was holding hostage several Lord of the Flies, so I checked them out to him. Who is now holding who? I unloaded and checked in the longed-for Bienvenidos workbooks and let the spanish teachers, the department head and our bookkeeper know they were in. I repaired a copy of Uncle Tom's Cabin. I got into the Main Frame and billed the kids that damaged the Signing Naturally DVD's. I was not feeling well. My mother had emergency brain surgery on Saturday to evacuate and drain a blood clot and the stress of that and a really horrid tasting can of soup Sunday night caught up with me. I had thrown up that morning and felt a lot better, so I went in. However when I started to really drag and felt every minute was about an hour and got dry mouth, I knew I wasn't being productive and not sure of what I really had (not wanting to spread anything around) so I went to Mrs. H and told her I was sick, went to the office and signed out for the day. My first sick day. (btw, my Mom is doing well and after some rehab should be back to her normal self!)

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Worked on some of the set up for NaNoWriMo for next month. Laminated an old poster we had on our graphic novel roll out bookshelf that keeps falling over. This should fix him up! Emailed Mr. W on the science books we got in late yesterday. Checked in and out texts. Checked the book I glued yesterday and it was ready to go back on the shelf. Tried to log in on the mainframe again to bill students and again it told me I was prohibited access! I sent in a lifering request to tech support services. Processed in some teacher materials for a novel set. Checked out World Literature to the block class. Worked on a project with the Physical Science with Earth Science teacher materials. When I originally processed them in, there were so many pieces that I couldn't see making a new entry for every separate workbook, so I just lumped them all together under the main teacher text code. I had a teacher come to me last summer asking what he had out, and I said he had out a PSw/ES. He asked me which one, and I couldn't tell him. Very frustrating for both of us. So I thought that each barcode has a comment section and I could put all that information in the comment section and have it available for everyone. So, I could look up a barcode and tell him (or her), "Oh, that's a chapter resource, fast file on Stars and Galaxies - a little thin paperback with about 40 pages" and if they wanted to really know, the ISBN number for that particular product. I got in nearly all the PSw/ES materials today that we have on hand. Tomorrow is a Statewide Inservice Day. We are on furlough for that day, but since I have been working on the committee, I will attend the Oregon Association of School Librarians conference for tomorrow and Saturday. Tomorrow I attend a book repair workshop and tour the State Library. Saturday I shall present a workshop on NaNoWriMo and just help out for the day. Mrs. H is the chairperson for the conference and she is an amazing lady with who, what and how she gets things done! We are so lucky to have her here at Sprague! She brings that same attitude and 'let's get this done' work ethic into our library every day.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Cart Full of Science

Today I finished up labeling all the shelves and redid all the endcap directories. The directories had so many markings on them of new stuff that it was getting a bit ridiculous. I had a father come in and talk with me about the Bienvenidos workbooks for Spanish - I explained to him about the new teachers, the extra classes that appeared and we had no idea that so many would be in them last spring! He was very nice and I gave him the ISBN number and told him to check Bookbyte. Gave out a lot of computer login numbers today. Helped a student print out song lyrics for a class, and another with how to change to page orientation. Put a book away on a shelf and for some reason, another book caught my eye, so I pulled it off the shelf and it had come unhinged! So I took it up to Ms. M since she had the new glue bottle for that kind of repair and glued it back together and put some Human Anatomy books on top of it (they are really heavy!). Checked in and out books during the day. Loaded up two carts of World Literature books for checkout tomorrow for a block class. Ms. S came in this afternoon saying they'd be down 8th period for them. Logged in the upfront print cash. Processed in four of the Buen Viaje workbooks for check out. Mr. M said we could do two each (student tape manual and student writing manual). We had a student checking on that so she came back and I checked her out a set. Deleted some old texts out of Trac-it. Mr. N came in with some students and they asked if they could check out the Gardner's Art Through the Ages CD's, so I got them out of the back and checked them out to the students. After they were done, some students checked them back in, but some kept them. Lastly I had Mr. S come up with a whole cart of old science texts and bits and pieces of things they were cleaning up. Some were old Biology that we had surplussed out during the science adoption summer of 2008. Others were materials teachers had picked up from various sources. I will contact Mr. W tomorrow and see if he wants to come by and see if they want any of these kept just for teacher reference. I also again asked our wonderful techie guys to loan me a camera to take pictures of my bulletin boards so I could post them. They are angels! You can check out the October 1st post and the 'Monday Training Blues' post from October 6th!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Went back to numbering shelves today, and thought I'd clean up the Prentice Hall Literature Platinum list so that I could get some more room. Deleted off books that have had no action since 2004. I finished up numbering the shelves and scooched over the Respect for Acting, and two other small sets of books and had enough room. Processed a teacher magazine, Time, Newsweek and New Yorker. We got in some new Buen Viaje workbooks and I notified the Spanish teachers and our bookkeeper as to the amounts now available. We had our October classified staff meeting this morning and talked about being sure we were getting in breaks and lunches; treating all of our Sprague community members the same way we'd like to be helped; vacation time and procedure; our furlough days for the year (like this Friday is a non-work, non-paid day - before we'd have an inservice activity and get paid for that), there will be three this year. Took about 45 minutes. This afternoon I was monitoring the computer lab and one student that I know was on an inappropriate site. I was shocked and went up to him letting him know that he should not be on there. He was very contrite. He sent me an email apologizing and also came into the workroom and apologized again, face to face. Sometimes you just have to be a mom to these guys and let them know how things may turn out down the road. I hope he takes my advice and makes the choice to stop that behavior. I was really disappointed in that. Just before I left I got a phone call from a woman wanting to have information on our author visit of Lauren Kessler (she wrote one of the books highlighted for the Oregon Sesquicentennial - Stubborn Twig). I had no idea she was coming, but I looked it up to see that she will be at Sprague on Friday for the Social Studies Statewide Inservice day. I didn't know if the general public could come, so I checked with the office and they didn't know either, so I transferred her to our Office Manager for more information.

The Monday Training Blues

Got in to work, (da da da dum)
Strange people were there. (da da da dum)
Some crazy training (da da da dum)
All in the blue lab chairs,
And I've got the blues, (Waaaailing)
Got the training day blues (da da dum)
Can't use my desk too much cause
I'm stuck with the Training Day Blues....
So, I spent most of the day in the back room cleaning up stuff that needed some attention. I finished moving all the teacher materials around and there's lots of space on that rack now. Got one of our aides to clean up the magazines we have in boxes for kids to use for projects they need photos for and that's all straightened out now. Got another aide to work on reorganizing all the backstock magazines we hold for a year or two. Another aide moved some unused science texts up to the back wall so we could make room for the Physical Science with Earth Science that came in. I worked on renumbering the shelves. We also began to move the Prentice Hall Literature Platinum books around since the new Prentice Hall Literature Golds took over three of their shelves. I did finish up my October cancer awareness board on the inside (while the group took a lunch) and did the outside bulletin board as well. (Da da da dum!)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Ribboned Out

Today I nearly finished the calendar but I ran out of ribbon! Drats! But it did come together nicely. I put at the top that testicular cancer was the most common for men ages 15-34 and that breast cancer affected 1 in 8 women and is the 2nd most common cancer for women. I also got together a scattering of books, some non-fiction and the others fiction. A nice collection. I put on my families run-ins with cancer: my mother-in-law who passed away this summer from pancreatic; my step father who died from lung; my father-in-law has had both lung and prostate; my mother and sister-in-law both had breast - my sister-in-law passed away from it. I had a teacher say she would bring in a ribbon, another a scarf from her cancer walks she's done. I had the juniors in for the CIS advisory today, they were updating their courses and work history today. The computers were operating smoothly and with speed, and the students were all very engaged taking care of those items! It was a good day in the blue lab. We got in two boxes of books, one of Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card and Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes by Chris Cutcher. I had one of our aides and one of our students on release that period help break in the spines, stamp and then put in barcodes and number the ends of the books. They helped shift books so we had room on the shelf for these and labeled the shelves. They did a great job and between us three, it all got done. Cleaned up the workroom today so it is cleared up of boxes and piles of things to do. Processed in the three remaining Physical Science with Earth Science books. Checked in and out texts, took in some regular library books. Checked out a class set of Immigrant Kids and The Arrival to Ms. O. Locked up the DVD/InFocus cart in the viewing room before I left for the day.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Got all the Algebra Connections Vol. 1 finished up this morning, with much thanks to Ms. M! She is amazing! We had two classes come down and check them out this afternoon. Also got in our new-to-us Prentice Hall Literature Gold books in. They've been refurbished and should be around for awhile. Though I did find two I will probably send back for highlighting and marking in the text. Stories are timeless and these classic texts have already been around since 1989, so they are a bit worn, and lost. So, with this set we should be good for another eon of student use! I did some clean up on this title in Trac-it, checking out how long books have been lost (some were lost back in 2000, I don't think they will show up!), or when they were billed (insert lost comment here). I found a gap in numbering and numbered them in there and won't have to move too many shelves I hope! Though now I think we will run into the Prentice Hall Literature Platinum books and will have to move them down. Processed a teacher magazine and Shape magazine. Contacted another school about the books they've lent us, but have disappeared. Again, these are from 2000 or so (Y2K??). I spent some time with another of the librarians who has moved to the textbook side at another high school and gave her some detailed instructions on withdrawing things from Trac-it. She was very appreciative. We had three damaged Physical Science with Earth Science books that we sent off and got the replacements in today. Worked a little bit on the calendar, but didn't find the right ribbon, so off after work today to get in the right stuff so I can finish tomorrow. I also sent out an email to all staff for them to bring in ribbons for family and friends to put on the calendar to honor those who have/are battling cancer. Our governing board is also doing something for the month, I got an email from their advisor so hopefully we can send people either way.