Skip to main content

Check It Out: December 16, 2015

Your weekly news from the OPS Library Services Staff

Spring Lake Library Mural

This Spring Lake Reading quilt mural was painted recently in the school's library.Hopefully this mural will work well with lessons in visual design techniques, world cultures blending together, and the unique history of South Omaha.

This painting, done by Richard Harrison and Rebecca Van Ornam of A Midsummer's Mural,  was done on canvas and installed with wallpaper paste.  Rebecca and Richard have been painting murals about the different  immigrant groups that have come through South Omaha for 2 years.  They painted a Czech mural and a Lithuanian Mural and will soon be painting unique murals about groups who immigrated from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Puerto Rico around the Plaza De La Raza, in South Omaha.  After that they hope to paint murals about the Polish and the Irish and many other immigrant groups.  For more information about those murals visit  For information about the artists visit

Franklin Invaded by Baby Otter!

Franklin Elementary Kindergarten students got a visit from Josh the Baby Otter Monday morning. In addition to learning about water safety through story time and a fun song, each student received a copy of the book  Josh the Baby Otter,  a sticker, and a chance to high five Josh. As you can see, many of them opted for a high five and a hug.  This free presentation was from the City of Omaha was a huge hit with our Kindergarten students and teachers alike. 


An Ode to School Librarians

We know exactly how awesome our school librarians truly are--and this article is a great reflection on the power of the school librarian.

Excerpt:  This is simply something we shouldn’t forget about in the great hub bub of discussion over education. Hold tight to the public school library, please, for all students. Let’s remember the library’s awesomeness, its power, the fact that it delivers a confidence in education, and the librarian’s role in connecting reading to writing, class lessons to research, socialization, and independence.

Read the full article here.

Reminder: Elementary Librarians

Please email your 2nd quarter Big 6+ Inquiry lesson by end of day January 4th.  These lessons do not have to be full research units.  They can be quick 5-10 minute add ons or one shot 25-40 minute lessons.  If you choose to use one of the lessons off the libguide, just send me the title and grade level you used it with during 2nd quarter.  If you want to turn them in earlier, I would be happy to look them over during break!  My goal is to add 5-10+ lessons from your submissions each quarter to the libguide to help create a robust idea bank.

Also, you will be meeting with your Big 6+ Inquiry workgroups again at our Team Meeting in February at the zoo.  Please be sure to check the one drive file to see your group responsibilities and deadlines.  If you have any questions, let me know.

2016 Student Technology Conference

The second annual Student Technology Conference, a free one-day online event bringing together students, educators and innovators from around the world, will be held Saturday, January 30, 2016 from 9 Am to 9 Pm EST. We invite all to attend!

The Student Technology Conference provides an international forum for the presentation, discussion and sharing of educational technology in schools and other academic settings. This conference, by students in grades 6-12 as well as colleges and universities and for all, is committed to:

  • Fostering a better understanding of how students use technology in education and to engage students, teachers and administrators in a conversation about technology.
  • Assisting teachers and administrators in understanding how students use technology both in and out of the classroom.
  • Strengthening the relationship between students, teachers and administrators about technology in the curriculum.

Last year’s conference featured more than twenty general sessions and four keynote addresses from all over the world with over 500 participants!  (Learn more about attending and presenting in the link at the top of the box.)

If you haven't joined us before, this is an amazing, engaging, collaborative, worldwide event that you will want to be a part of. You can join us for just for one session, or for every session! Even if you miss a session, they are all recorded so you can watch them later!

Happy Holidays from your TAC Library Services Team!

Susan, Pam, Kari, Sandy, Margaret, Gwen,

Stacy, Courtney and Laura!

A winter scene

PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator

PBS Digital Innovators

PBS Learnign Media Digital Innovator

The PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators program recognizes educators who incorporate digital media in the classroom to inspire student learning. For the first time in four years, all educators that submit a complete application and meet the entry requirements will be invited to join the program!

All 2016 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators will receive one year of free professional development, virtual trainings, access to exclusive resources, a free online course from PBS TeacherLine, invitations to special events and engagement opportunities with peers and thought leaders.

Plus, up to 54 educators, one in each state and U.S. territory, will be selected as Lead PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators. Lead Innovators also receive a three-day, all-expense paid trip to Denver, CO in June to participate in the PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators Summit and to attend the ISTE Conference.

Join the community of hundreds of tech savvy K-12 educators and apply today to become a 2016 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator!

Applications will be accepted until February 8, 2016.

Omaha Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, age, genetic information, citizenship status, or economic status in its programs, activities and employment and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following individual has been designated to address inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Superintendent of Schools, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).

Las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha no discriminan basados en la raza, color, origen nacional, religión, sexo, estado civil, orientación sexual, discapacidad , edad, información genética, estado de ciudadanía, o estado económico, en sus programas, actividades y empleo, y provee acceso equitativo a los “Boy Scouts” y a otros grupos juveniles designados. La siguiente persona ha sido designada para atender estas inquietudes referentes a las pólizas de no discriminación: El Superintendente de las Escuelas, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).