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Check It Out: December 13, 2017

Your weekly news from the OPS Library Services Staff


Congratulations to three of our own who are graduating this Friday with their Doctorates in Educational Leadership (with an emphasis in School Library) from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Dr. Stacy Lickteig, Dr. Jo O'Garro, and Dr. Stephanie Schnabel

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AASL Materials & Spanish Inquiry Posters

Be on the look out for some AASL Standards materials coming to your physical mailbox before break.  Every librarian will receive a copy of the table that spells out all of the standards (in color) and a few other items.

If you ordered Spanish versions of the inquiry posters, please arrange a time to pick them up from library services with Gwen or Courtney.  We'd rather not send them through the mail so as to keep them from getting damaged.

A Few of Our Favorite Things!

For the month of December, we would like to feature a few of your favorite things on our social media pages.  Please send me lessons, activities, guest speakers, displays, books, etc. that are some of your or your students' favorite things this year.  Pictures are always a plus if possible.  Thank you!  Courtney

If your library was renovated (and you have been able to use the space) this school year, send me a picture please!

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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

AASL Standards

Something Familiar and Something New: Unpacking the Standards

Did you get your copy of the new standards yet? I must tell you that I am officially excited about them. While I was at the conference, I attended the “AASL ESLS Research Symposium.” The purpose of the symposium was to get an overview of the standards and how they apply to research in school librarianship. I appreciated the overview. However, we just scratched the surface of the standards and I am by no means an expert. I desperately need to study them thoroughly before next semester.

Here are some of my takeaways from the session that I will keep in mind as I review my materials.

  • The standards are written to reflect both formal and informal learning environments.
  • Three approaches are addressed with applicable domains and competencies. These approaches are the school library program, the school librarian, and the learner. They are integrated to provide guidelines to help the school library program to align with what learners and school librarians are doing.
  • The common beliefs are still part of the standards. They serve as a starting point to help stakeholders understand the role of school librarians and the programs that we facilitate.
  • The roles of school librarians are still included, but not ranked. They are integrated throughout the standards to indicate that roles do not stand alone. Instead, school librarians often perform more than one role at a time.
  • Additional features of the standards include best practices, evaluation scenarios for learning, and examples of assessments.

Here are some additional features that I liked about the standards:

  • If you are looking for how to apply the standards to real-world situations, you will find over 200 examples of evidence to document your accomplishments.
  • There are at least 200 articles from experts for further professional development.
  • There is an assessment and evaluation section to help you to reflect on your practices.
  • There are several appendices. They include an annotated list of AASL position statements, Interpretations of the Library Bill of Rights, and an Implementation Plan Overview.
  • Each part of the standards book indicates the appendices that can be used to supplement learning.

Winter Break Reading Challenges

Maker Spaces Before Break

Have your students used your makerspace materials to construct some of the following:

Evergreen Trees




Gingerbread Houses

Polar Bear


Their own winter themed creation

Scholastic--Winter Break Ideas to Share with Parents

See the source image

Winter break means a well-deserved reprieve from homework and daily obligations. But before you know it, the holidays will be over and it will be back to the bus stop. To prepare for a smooth re-entry and a successful second semester, don't let school skills like reading, writing, and math slide completely during winter vacation. Try these family-friendly activities to keep skills sharp (click below for full article).  Many of these work for both elementary and secondary students.

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).