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Check It Out: September 12, 2018

Your monthly news from the OPS Library Services Staff

Important Dates

September 14  -  Curriculum Day:  Community Engagement Center @ UNO   1/2 Day (urriculum Day at UNO's Community Engagement Center (AM High School and PM Middle School; Elementary times are in the document below)  8:00-11:00 AM  and 12:30-3:30 PM   ROOMS 230/231

September 14  -  NO PARAPROFESSIONAL TRAINING! Moved to April 11th!

October 9, November 6 - New Teacher Meetings  at TAC in Library Services from 4:45-6:15

October 24 - Secondary Librarians Team Meeting at TAC, December 12, 2018 at location TBD  12:00-3:00

October 25 - Elementary Librarians Team Meeting  at TAC (room 5-151)  8:30-11:00

UNITE Picture Books

Thank you to Ed Ventura at Chandler View for sharing this FREE resource with us.  It now appears on all of the elementary library websites as either a tile in your database area or as a link on the side.  (Secondary folks, see the link below if you would like to use it.)  Bonus, our ESL department had some of their translators listen to the books, and they said most of them are really good!

We picture a world where all children have access to an abundance of books that celebrate their languages and cultures and cultivate a life-long love of reading. As a for-profit social enterprise, we partner with businesses to change the literacy landscape of their communities by introducing families to our free digital library.

Unite for Literacy has originated a unique way of assessing and talking about book scarcity. We analyzed statistical variables including income, ethnicity, geography and languages as they relate to the number of books in homes. The resulting interactive Book Desert Map presents our conceptual findings in visual form from the state down to local scale. Our intention is for this map to illuminate the problem of book scarcity and initiate conversations across the public, private and civic sectors about the geography of books and reading, in order to focus community efforts to create book abundance.

Teen Read Week

The 2018 event will be held Oct. 7 - 13th, featuring the theme "It's Written in the Stars: READ." Library staff, afterschool providers and educators can use this theme to encourage teens to think and read outside of the box, as well as seek out fantasy, science fiction and other out-of- this-world reads.  Join the conversation on Twitter with #TRW18.

Teen Read Week™ is a national adolescent literacy initiative created by the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). It began in 1998 and is held annually in October the same week as Columbus Day. Its purpose is to encourage teens to be regular readers and library users. 

The 2018 Teens’ Top Ten voting is now open! Now through the October 13, teens can vote for their 3 favorite titles from our list of nominees! Check out and share the nominees video below and encourage your teens to vote! Winners will be announced the week of October 15th.  TEENS ONLY are asked to vote.

If you have access to devices in your buildings, this might be a great activity to partner with your teachers to get students voting!

Librarians...just like search engines, except...

In Preparation for Open House

Image result for open house free clip art

Think about what you can do to engage your students and parents during Open House.  What will get them into your library? 

Some schools do a scavenger hunt for families.  Make sure you're a stop on the list! 

Camille Wakefield at Norris did a guess the Shelfie promotion a few years ago.  She had teachers take a picture of their school or personal bookshelves and students could stop by to make their guess to win a prize! 

When I struggled to get people in the door , I set up a table outside the doors with information that might be helpful for students and parents like database password sheets, information about OverDrive, book club or other special programs, and parent info from Common Sense Media.

What great things have you done or plan to do for Open House?  Let Courtney know by 3:00 on Friday, and she will share ideas out with the group.

Global Goals

Eileen Heller (OPS Elementary Tech Trainer) and our very own Erin Solheim (Walnut Hill School Librarian) have been working on a special project they would like your help on if you are able. 

A few years ago, the United Nations came together to create the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.  These are sometimes just referred to as the Global Goals.  TeachSGDs works with persons and organizations to provide teaching resources to educators and com



They have been working with individuals from TeachSGDs to create a bank of book recommendations.  This book collection could be used as mentor texts in individual lessons about the goals or as part of nonfiction inquiry texts.  We are calling this project the Global Goals Book Collection and you can learn more here.


They could use your help in two ways:


  • Please connect online by following/retweeting from hashtags #GlobalGoals and #TeachSDGs
  • Assist us in compiling book resources online by sharing with our book recommendation form with those in your PLN

Pete the Cat

That's right!!!    Eric Litwin is coming!

Author Eric Litwin is coming to Omaha Public Schools February 25-March 1.

We are expecting this will be a very popular presentation and, with only 10 slots, we want to ensure that Mr. Eric's time in Omaha is well spent. Details for applying to host Mr. Eric are in the attachment below. Applications are due by September 20!

Librarian, Information Scientist, Media Specialist, Oh My!

Joslyn Teacher Nights - First one of six is Sep. 20 @ 4:30pm (starts at 5:15, snack time first)

Durham Museum Teacher Night - Oct. 5th @ 5-9pm

EdCamp Omaha (Technology) - Nov. 3 @ 8:30am-12:30pm

Tips for Collaboration Between School Librarians and Teachers

From Shannon McClintock Miller:

My Tips & Helpful Google Docs For Awesome Collaboration Between Teacher Librarians and Teachers!

Articles about the Benefits of Makerspaces


As makerspaces continue to grow in popularity in library settings are we as librarians ensuring accessibility for all students and library patrons? Do we look at our spaces, activities, outcomes and consider inclusion of all students? Join Heather Moorefield-Lang for a rich discussion in makerspaces, accessibility, and inclusion.

Sep 25, 2018 6:00 PM in Central Time (US and Canada)

FYI:  Anyone can attend the live webinars for free.  Only AASL members can watch the archived recordings for free.


AASL eCOLLAB | Your eLearning Laboratory is a repository of webcasts, podcasts, and other digital resources from AASL. eCOLLAB provides a central location to collected and manage your elearning, on your time and at your pace.

Some content is for AASL members only, BUT some of it is complimentary.  Click on the link below to see the free content.

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 (531-299-9822).

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 (531-299-9822).