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Check It Out: April 11, 2018

Your weekly news from the OPS Library Services Staff


Upcoming Events:

Send "Day in the Life" picture of your school library to Courtney any day in April to help celebrate School Library Month on our social media pages.  Send your or your students' favorite books of the year to share in May.

Tuesday April 17th    New Librarian Meeting    4:45-6:00    TAC--Library Services

Wednesday April 25th   Secondary Team Meeting    12:00-3:00     Location TBD

Tuesday May 1st     Retirement and Farewell Get Together   5:00   TAC--Library Services

Links for Order Forms

Consider Submitting a Session Proposal for NLA/NSLA Conference

We want YOU to submit a session proposal for the 2018 NLA/NSLA Conference in Lincoln, NE.  If you typically have not been able to attend the fall conference because it is during the school week, you are in luck!  We will have a Saturday option which will feature the NSLA keynote speaker Michelle Luhtala!

General sessions will be on Friday October 5th and Saturday October 6th and can be on any topic you feel passionate about relating to school libraries.  Be sure to indicate in the form which days/times work best for you.  You DO NOT need to be a member of NLA or NSLA to submit a conference proposal.  The form will ask you which organization fits better with your session idea.  School library sessions are aligned with NSLA.  There are a variety of session types available, but most run about 50 minutes.  

Not sure about presenting at a professional conference?  Here's a few reasons to give it a try.
1)  It's a great addition to your resume
2)  Librarians make the best audience members
3)  Ask a friend to join you!  Planning a presentation is a great excuse to hang out.
4)  You may not think you have anything to share that anyone else would want to hear, but I guarantee there is something you do that others could benefit from hearing about it.
5)  Still not sold on the idea of presenting but know someone who would be AMAZING at it?  Make sure you encourage them to submit a proposal!

6) Lead presenters get to attend conference for FREE!!  You get admission to the Friday night Golden Sower Gala (plus dinner) AND free lunch at our business meeting on Saturday!

We want this conference to be filled with opportunities for our school library attendees to think, create, share, and grow.  Help us do so by submitting a proposal by May 1st!

Click here to access the conference website.  Then, click on the NSLA Program Proposals link under "Call for Proposals" and click on the NSLA logo on the next page.  

(Grant funds will pay for OPS school librarians to attend the Saturday portion of the conference. People attending on Saturday will also be able to attend the Friday evening Golden Sower Gala.  Early bird registration begins May 1st. We will need your application for attendance at a professional conference and registration forms filled out and turned in before you leave for summer break.  Anyone submitting session proposals will be notified at the beginning of May if they have been selected to present.)

Want more on the AASL Standards?

Check out the offerings AASL has for FREE in their eCollab.  There are also quite a few archived events available to view.  Just click on the link at the bottom of the box.

Upcoming Events

Making & Amplifying Educator Connections through the AASL Standards

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 | 6:00 p.m. CST

Using the Standards to Foster a Culture of Deep Learning

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 | 6:00 p.m. CST

AASL--SLM Idea for Week #2

Making Educator Connections during School Library Month #AASLslm #slm18

The second week of School Library Month affords all librarians to make connections with educators and make connections as educators.

The School Library Month committee has created several activity ideas that you can use during this week. What better way to make connections with educators than with food! Consider hosting an educator breakfast and treat educators to coffee, tea, and delicious pastries, or invite educators to “sample” new books in your library by creating a café environment. Take sweet treats to department meetings, which are a great way to book talk, provide a quick PD or web tutorial about content and showcase library resources. Consider one or all of the activities to make connections at your school. More information and activities can be found on the AASL School Library Month website at

And don’t forget, there are two webinars scheduled this week that you won’t want to miss. Kathleen Riopelle Roberts will present “Making & Amplifying Educator Connections through the AASL Standards” on Tuesday, April 10, at 6:00 p.m. Central. There is also a webinar on Thursday, April 12 at 3:00 p.m. Central, which will include panelists, Eileen Makoff, Rebecca Behrens, Jo Hackl, and Sara Holbrook who will be discussing “Author Ideas on Integrating Fiction into the Middle-Grade and Middle-School Curriculum.”

How are you making educator connections at your school library?

Be sure to share how you are celebrating School Library Month 2018 by posting comments and pictures on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using the hashtags #SLM18 and #AASLslm.  


Just in case you haven't had a chance to check out EPIC! a fantastic FREE resource, Eileen Heller has put together a fabulous walk through video to give you an idea of how to use it!

Enter to Win a Copy of Heal the Earth by Julian Lennon

Official Contest Rules:

• Open to teachers and librarians in the US only.

• One video entry per person.

• Each entry must include a completed and signed submission form.

• Entry must be in a valid video format (AVI, FLV, WMV, MP4, M4V, or MOV) and cannot exceed 3 minutes. File size cannot exceed 10 GB.

• Entry must include the cover of the book and have a positive message of how we should treat our natural resources. One idea: Tell us what projects or activities you and your class will be doing to celebrate Earth Day. Be creative!

• All submissions must be received by midnight EST on Monday, April 30.

AASL--Creating Connected Learners

Creating Connected Learners

Being a #ConnectedEducator is vital in today’s fast-paced, social media world. We have taken a look at what it means to be a connected educator, creating a stellar profile, defining your brand, and followingpeople, hashtags, and companies.

AASL’s School Library Month theme for 2018 is Making Connections at Your School Library. A quick Google search for #ConnectedLearners returned several social media posts, including images, queries, and requests for connections. Several posts were made by students. That alone shows that students are connecting on their own. But how can you model, facilitate, and create connected learners?

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

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).