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Check It Out: November 8, 2017

Your weekly news from the OPS Library Services Staff


Elementary Tech Morning Thursday, November 9th, 8:30-11:00 @ TAC

Middle School Team Meeting Tuesday, November 14th, 12:00-3:00 @ TBD

High School Team Meeting Wednesday, November 15th, 12:00-3:00 @ Northwest High

A+ Curriculum Guides

Remember to continue to check the A+ Curriculum Guides located in our Notebook to align the skills you are teaching with the pacing guide included.  We will be looking for feedback on where the skills fall, vocabulary identified, etc. throughout this school year.  If you have any questions, suggestions, or comments about what is in the curriculum guides, please let Courtney know!

Four Surefire Techniques for Engaging English Language Learners

School Library Journal--Four Surefire Techniques for Engaging English Language Learners

by Valentina Gonzalez

During my 20-plus years in teaching, I refined four powerful instructional strategies that help give ELL students the tools they need to succeed in school—and as lifelong learners. They are designed to be woven into daily instruction across content areas from pre-K to 12th grade.

Make Input Comprehensible

Model for your Students

Use Visuals

Make Output Comprehensible

Looking for Help with the Golden Sower Competition

Questions for the Golden Sower / Read to Succeed Competition:

If you have read the Golden Sower nominees for this year, we would greatly appreciate ANY questions you would like to contribute for the 2018 Golden Sower/Read to Succeed Competition!  
We ask that questions be put in the "In what book...." format and include the page number for each question.
There is also a written test with short phrase or word answers such as:
In Fuzzy Mud, what was discovered that helped with finding a cure for the fuzzy mud sickness?  Turtle Enzymes - page 159
GATE facilitators have been asked to turn in 20 - 30 "In What Book" Questions and 10 - 15 short answer per book. ANY additional questions on ANY book, in either format, would be welcome!
If you would like to submit questions, please send to Jean Janssen, GATE Secretary. They are asking for all questions to be submitted by Winter Break.

Thank you!  Becky Nicholson, School Librarian at Columbian Elementary

Who Ya Gonna Call...or Email?

The fastest way to get your questions answered is to contact the right person!

  • Laura Pietsch (531) 299-9615: Policy, personnel and evaluation, Sherwood grants and building projects
  • Stacy Lickteig (531) 299-9614: Technology, cataloging, copyright, budget and ordering
  • Courtney Pentland (531) 299-9609:  Inquiry, professional library, newsletter Items; Secondary Review Committee; secondary author visits, skype visits
  • McKenzie White (531) 299-9362 Instructional technology , ITL Program

  • Gwen Jackson  Elementary author visits

Technology Training/Support

  • Debra Bordenkecher  531-299-9841: Handles training needs of classified staff (including paraprofessionals)
  • Hardware issues should be handled by your building assigned technologist. If this person is not in the building, call or email the Help Desk 531-299-0300

PBS Resources for Thanksgiving

Food For Thought: Colonizing America
Understanding colonial society in the early 17th century, just in time for Thanksgiving!
This US history video from Crash Course describes the diverse patterns of colonization of Europeans in North America. The outcome of this colonization resulted in conflicts between colonizers and native people. Learn more about different factors that played into the development of two colliding cultures using this video, designed for students grades 9-12. Explore Collection
American Experience: The Pilgrims Collection   Grades: 5-12
In 1620, the Pilgrims traveled from England to Cape Cod. They went on a 66-day journey where they faced exposure, disease, and death in an unfamiliar land. Watch and learn from this collection of reenactments and expert interviews.
Discover More
All About the Holidays: Thanksgiving    Grades: 2-6
Thanksgiving is a day for us to remember what we're thankful for. Uncover the history behind this holiday! Discover More
Daniel Tiger: The Thank You Song  Grades: PreK-1
Remind your youngest students how important it is to say thank you to their friends, parents, and other people in their life! Discover More

Additional Resources from:

The Library of Congress

National Archives

National Endowment for the Humanities

National Gallery of Art

National Park Service

Smithsonian Institution

Who Do You Follow on Facebook?

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Thank you to the librarians who responded to the question posed by one of your colleagues:  "Who do You Follow on Social Media?"


Future Ready Librarians

Technology Teacher Tribe with Brittany Washburn

Common Sense Educators

Staying Cool in the Library

Learning Librarians

STEM Teacher Tribe

Jennifer LeGarde

Shannon McClintock Miller

Scholastic Librarians

School Library Journal


Twitter #





Send Courtney What You are Thankful For!

I would love to feature some of the things you are thankful for as a librarian and in your school library in the month of November.  Just email me a quick sentence or two if it would be ok for me to share your thoughts on social media. 

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Webinar: Asking Questions in the Age of Google

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Tuesday, November 14, 2017 2:00 pm

In navigating the digital age, we all must become information gatekeepers of the content we curate in the virtual world. Now, more than ever, it's imperative that we develop responsible information literacy habits and critical consumption of media, facts and sources and cultivate those same habits in our learners.

The Question Formulation Technique (QFT), developed by the Right Question Institute, is a simple, yet powerful, strategy that motivates students to question information, evidence and assumptions to build greater empathy, deeper engagement and informed arguments. More than 250,000 educators around the world are integrating the QFT into diverse classroom and library settings.

Join us for a one-hour webinar to learn how to use the QFT to tap into students’ natural curiosity and to promote critical analysis, research and information literacy.

During this webinar, participants will...

• Experience the steps of the Question Formulation Technique (QFT)
• Explore how the QFT has been integrated into a range of grade levels and subject areas to enhance and deepen learning
• Hear how teacher librarian Connie Williams used the QFT to hone students' research skills and support information literacy
• Learn how the QFT can be easily integrated into your existing work and adapted to a variety of settings and time frames
• Leave with a deep understanding of the strategy and the ability to apply it with students and share it with colleagues

About the Presenters

John Sessler holds an Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. An experienced educator and curriculum designer, John currently works as a consultant for organizations such as PBS, The Right Question Institute and The Children’s Theatre Company.

Connie Williams spent 28 years as a teacher librarian for Petaluma City Schools. She now works as an adjunct for Santa Rosa Junior College and an on-call librarian for Sonoma County Libraries. She recently published “Understanding Government Information: A Teaching Strategy Toolkit for Grades 7-12.”

Webinar--How to Win the Reserach Obstacle Course Nov 9

2:00 PM on Thursday November 9th
For many users, conducting research is similar to navigating an obstacle course. From knowing where to start their research, to navigating search results, and then finding the right content–these challenges may impede successful research outcomes and potentially undermine your library’s mission. This webinar will focus on tools that knock down these challenges to create better visibility of the library’s collections, refine authentication, improve search, and provide ways to access the collections.

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).