The daily life of a Middle School Library Media Assistant.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

And on the Fourth Day...

Ready for some R&R! Got all my new hardbacks out on the rolling rack and up on the bookshelves today. Displayed other interesting looking to me books and really am liking how it looks. Still looking for the remagnetizer! Got more textbooks off the shelf so I now have three whole shelves with books displayed! So excited! Had a meeting at 10:00 for the classified staff and got to leave after we did our posters. Then I sent out a message that I'd laminate today and got in a bunch of stuff to do this afternoon. Had a potluck lunch and that was nice to sit with everyone and talk. Then a meeting until 3 this afternoon. We discussed lots of things and also we did some team building stuff. It was fun. Then we talked in the afternoon about emergency plans with our police liaison area. Then I went back to the library and got to talk with the former LMA and she let me know that they didn't have a demagnetizer! It was probably loaned to another school years ago. They haven't stripped books in five years she thinks. That would be a huge job to find all the books that need to be stripped. Wow. Took me about half an hour to laminate the jobs that came in and closed windows, turned off lights and headed out. Four day weekend! 6th graders start Tuesday! 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Algebra Kerfluffle

Had our first LMSS meeting today, but not before I found out that we are supposed to have Algebra Connections books from South HS. South sent all of theirs to Judson. So I contacted some people and hopefully tomorrow we will have an answer and some math books! Sent out a call to the old LMA to see if we have a book remagnetizer. I have a demagnetizer, but no way to put the charge back on. Or else I haven't found it yet. Got all Mr. O's books checked out, he does a lot of different classes. Found a whole box and a bit more of books that should have been sent to Crossler. Checked out another class set to a social studies teacher. Got some materials for a lady who is homeschooling her son. Sent out a "Five Finger Check Out" notice. Mr. O came in and just took his little English boxes, so I had to ask him to bring them back. Left about 9 for the LMSS meeting over at McKay. It was supposed to end at 11:30, but really didn't end until about 12:15ish. I had to talk with peeps about our magnetizer, tattle strips, OBOB (Oregon Battle of the Books) - will be getting a poster and some bookmarks for that! Yeah! I have a teacher interested in it this year. Went over new book buying procedures and we all had some concerns that we won't be able to look at prices anymore. That will make it hard to build a list, if we want to spend $500, we'll have to kind of guess on what makes that. We can take a list price and take our district discount to that, but it'll still be a lot harder than what it was. After the meeting, since we rarely get any time together, a lot of us ended up at Chipotle to just relax over lunch, then back to work. Had a teacher in the staff workroom ask me to replace the toner in the copier machine, so I poked into a cabinet, found the toner, and changed the drum. Pretty easy with the instructions on the machine. Tried to help a teacher with her computer, and she ended up having to go to the vice principal and found a way to do it. Good for her! Library looks better every day, but the disorganization is killing me - ugh! Stuff is literally all over the place. I need order! Order! That will take me all year I'm guessing.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Don't Know My Own Strength

Today I went in and changed out the textbooks for a teacher. I had decided to give him the new ones, and right before I left last night he requested the old, so I changed that for him. Got the rest of the new Language Arts curriculum unboxed and ready for them to pick up. Then they had a big meeting in the library all morning, and I got to speak! Yeah! Though I forgot a couple of things, my book (If I Stay) and that I had computer use sheets ready to go for the month. Oh well! After they all left I boxed up the other old social study books in the boxes from the Language Arts, worked out about perfect! Opened up the window blinds and pulled one right out of the ceiling - whoops! Don't know my own strength. Our custodian came and fixed it. He is a very kind fellow. I washed off all the tables and the shelves under the windows. I must say there were a lot of little dead bug bodies by the windows, and spider webs. Helped a teacher with a flash drive, to put her lesson plans on the Q: drive. Checked out math calculators. Checked out a set of the 7th grade Language Arts materials. They did a new thing. They are in sets, so you scan the barcode and a table comes up with all the items in that box and you have to check to make sure they are all there before you can say yes, check it out. Interesting. Also had teachers in math come in and ask about the old CPM books the high schools used to use. I guess they are going to be transferred out to the middle schools. Good use for them! Better than sitting on needed shelf space! Had a cart of books that needed to be checked for damage so I did that today. Found about 10+/- that needed some work. Put the others away. Forgot to call back a mom who needs books for her son. Must do first thing in the morning.

Monday, August 25, 2014

First Day as a Lion

So excited to come to work today! Got keys, my badge and set to work! Boxes of new books, tables to set, old books to box up! I was running all day! I opened about 16 boxes of new social studies materials and used those to pack up some old books that were sitting on the top of book shelving. I was so happy to get that top cleared off. I have one more to go and I'll be glad to have the display space for library books. There were way too many tables in the window area, so I decided to follow ADA guidelines and finally got 7 tables finagled in there all perfect with lots of space. I took the other two tables and used one up front by the metal detectors and one behind the main check out counter. Love my view from my windows! Got to see some clouds sailing by, and hazy off in the distance the cascade mountains. Checked out 284 books to two teachers today. One I hadn't heard what edition he wanted in time, so I picked the new ones, then just before I left, he said he wanted the old ones! Might have time to change that in the morning. Had some English teachers come in and there were stacks of boxes I thought just for them, yes, just for them, but entered and barcoded, so I set about opening up all those boxes as well. Each box had a set of guided materials, three sets of each box. All three grades, all different lesson plans. I had seven towers taller than me! Didn't get them all open, but time just flew by.  I wrote on a space on each box, about ten of them, then found stickers in each box. Oh well! Used stickers after that! Saturday night I met an incoming student at the Teen End of Summer Reading Program at the Salem Public Library as I volunteered that night. She came in today and gave me a great big hug. Very special! Met great people, and got my lunch at 2, I was too busy before because I really needed to get a project done (getting that shelving top cleared!!). A great day, can't wait for tomorrow!

Reading List 2013-2014 School Year

  • What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty - picked this off the staff room 'pick a book' rack. Alice hits her head in spin class and loses ten years of her life. I just ripped through the pages. Interesting to think about what I'd be like if suddenly I thought it was ten years ago! I really recommend this one!
  • The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke - It's set in Venice! One of my fave locations for my Nano novels! I enjoyed it, but loved the drawings for each chapter, made me happy to know see the canals and all. A good story as well!
  • Stephen Fair by Tim Wynne-Jones - I'm not usually into teen novels, but this one was perfect. Stephen's brother had nightmares and vanished, then Stephen began to get nightmares. Really a surprisingly good read.
  • The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan - sad to say I didn't really get into it and ended up stopping. Maybe another time I'll try again.
  • The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo - a lovely little novela on how an elephant dropped through the opera house roof because of the magician and changed lives. Very nice.
  • Forest Mage by Robin Hobb - continuing the saga of Nevare and his struggles between who he thought he was and who the magic has turned him into. Might read the last one sometime, but off to enjoy some other books.
  • Shaman's Crossing by Robin Hobb - Really enjoyed this first book and decided to go ahead and read the second one. Interesting world!
  • Wild by Cheryl Strayed - Always one of my dreams to do the PCT. A nice story, but more a journey of discovery than a trail journal. I enjoyed it.
  • A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin - must stop reading these!!! Taking a break. They say that Martin is the American Tolkien, but I disagree. I see no hope in here, darn good stories, but the aura of hope is missing, and I miss that.
  • A Feast For Crows by George R.R. Martin - what happened to Tyrion? Waiting for book five to arrive...Glad to be about done with this series!
  • Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin - almost threw this one across the room about half way through! On to Feast of Crows!
  • A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin (like in J.R.R. Tolkien?) Had to push on! Onto book three....
  • Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin - All right, I'm hooked. Off to read the second book!
  • The Path Between the Seas by David McCullough. Fabulous trip through the making of the Panama Canal. I read all 600+ pages and enjoyed it all (well, maybe except the political stuffs!) but the engineering, the medical, the men involved, what a great tribute to this place.
  • The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman was intriguing. Imagine you could check out from a library items from fairy tales. Need to get somewhere in a hurry? How about 7 league boots? Nice twist on the tales and a good read.
  • The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo was incredibly charming and lovely. A new Velveteen Rabbit feeling book. Glad I read it.
  • Dragon Harper by Anne McCaffrey, Todd J. McCaffrey - it's been years since I read about Pern and wanted to see how Todd stacks up! Brought me right back, a good tale, but I've peeked in and will probably go elsewhere for awhile.
  • The Foundling by D.M. Cornish - Kind of enjoyed this alternate universe. Monsters sort of coexist with humans, but humans tend to want the monsters dead and out of the way. A young boy is raised in an orphanage and is chosen to become a lamplighter, the adventure on the way to his new job was a work of art. I did enjoy it! Lots of pictures drawn by the author, glossary and maps. Different words. Not bad!
  • Innocent Darkness by Suzanne Lasear - not too bad! Steampunk combined with a plausible fae tale. I kind of liked it.
  • Hunger by Jackie Kessler - Very interesting tale of a young girl with anorexia who is confronted by Death not to die, but become one of the four horsemen, Famine. This was actually a great read, I really enjoyed it and might even read the others in my spare time :)
  • Blaze by Laurie Boyle Crompton - Great book. I was expecting a typical teen angsty girl/boy thing, and the book really threw a curve at me and I ended up loving it and having to think about labels.
  • Playing for Pizza by John Grisham - fun little read of a third string quarterback who ends up on the Italian NFL. Cute!
  • Dakota - a Spiritual Geography by Kathleen Norris - A good book to read after the last one. Gave me time to breathe, process and sink deep into the things that matter. I really like her writing.
  • A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah - I literally could not sleep at night if I read this before I went to bed. Wow. Truly a horror story and to think there are kids out there right now that are experiencing this. Breaks my heart.
  • Bad Land by Jonathan Raban - Jonathan tells the story of the mid-American dream. Owning your own homestead with the promise that dry land farming can be done by anyone, which we all know now is not the case. He chronicles the homesteads and their decline as well as some of the families to come from there and some that still do. There is no dryness here, he brings a part of our history to life in an enriching way.
  • Needles by Andie Dominick - a good look at what it's really like to live with diabetes and the choices you must make daily.
  • Song of the Sparrow by Lisa Ann Sandell - one of our books in verse, this is a great telling of a friendship between Elaine and Gwynivere of King Athur fame. Sparse but full of meaning, snippets to enhance a rich story. I will recommend this one next year to kids for sure!
  • Beyond the Sky and the Earth by Jamie Zeppa - I love stories of finding yourself in strange places that are well written and make you want to go there, this one certainly did. Jamie goes to teach school in Bhutan and her life changes course. Beautifully written.
  • God Grew Tired of Us by John Bul Dau - one of the 'lost boys' of the Sudan, really awoke in me a knowledge of what happened there and how the people were affected by the war. Nicely done.
  • Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc by Mark Twain - What a delight! He spent years researching Joan and the events of her life and considered this one of his best works. Critics panned it, but I thought it was fabulous. Told through the eyes of her secretary and friend, the voice throughout was perfect. I think a must read!