2018 Recap

We’ve had lots of incredible events happen this year at Oglethorpe Avenue Elementary including:

  • We had 4 AMAZING author visits with Caleb Zane Huett, Abby Hanlon, Joey Weiser and with OAES parents Bart King and Jacob Wenzka;
  • 2 book fairs;
  • 2 Reading Rock Star field trips;
  • Summer Reading Rock Star Celebration;
  • Winter Reading Rock Star Celebration;
  • 9 WOWs where Reading Rock Stars were celebrated!
  • The Books for Keeps program, which distributed 12 free books to all students K-5!
  • Mr. Evan from Athens Clarke County Library shared info with all students PK-2 about our summer reading program.  Ms. Sugi shared the same info with everyone else.
  • We took part in MakerFest!
  • Ms. Sugi created Summer Reading Lists for each grade level!
  • Intern Hannah labeled fiction books according to genre
  • Ms. Sugi delivered lessons to all classes promoting love of reading, media literacy and staying safe online;
  • We continued our focus on developing a culturally relevant reading collection- the Black Panther series was a huge hit!
  • The Media Committee developed guidelines for technology use;
  • We packed (and are still packing) the library in prep for the move to the new school;
  • Mr. Perez and Ms. Sugi organized the tech distribution and collection in the fall and spring.

None of this would have been possible without the help of Mr. Perez, interns Melissa Serro, Hannah Sikes, Emily Walls, Max Rabb, and Dansbie Charles, as well as our amazing parent volunteers and teaching staff.  Thanks for a great year!

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Books for Keeps Is the Best!

The best thing about being a school librarian in Athens, Ga is that we have this incredible organization called Books for Keeps which raises funds ($30 per student- if inclined, donate here) so that all students K-5 are able to take home 12 books each year in order to prevent summer slide. Thanks to Leslie Hale, Melaney Cook Smith, Rainey Lynch, Louis Crow, and all the other individuals who make this day possible. You rock our world!

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Wildcats Writing to Celebrate Poetry Month

April is poetry month. I always tell the kids it’s my favorite month to teach.  PK-3 and I have been exploring the question “What is poetry?” using Eloise Greenfield’s poem, Things. 

The upper grades and I have been writing poetry.  This past week we used Lucille Clifton’s “why some people be mad at me sometimes” as a mentor text.  Our kids have had a great time writing.  Enjoy their poems!

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Black History Month Performance

Yesterday we had an incredible Black History Month Performance here at Oglethorpe Avenue Elementary.  You can watch the video below.

The video is divided into four parts.

OAES Black History Month, Part 1:

Ms. Shearer Opening Remarks, 3rd Grade, Ms. Moye’s Kindergarten, Ms. Moye

OAES Black History Month, Part 2:

Ms. Marin’s Kindergarten, Kyndle, Ms. Blackwell’s Class

OAES Black History Month, Part 3:

5th Grade, Mr. Manzy, Step Team

OAES Black History Month, Part 4:

Step Team, Dr. Dunne

 

Make sure you turn in your February reading log!

Students and parents, make sure you read at home and complete your February reading log. All students who fill out their February reading log will receive a free ticket to Six Flags.  This log is due February 21. Happy reading!

Los estudiantes y los padres, asegúrese de leer en casa y completar su registro de lectura de febrero. Todos los estudiantes que completen su registro de lectura de febrero recibirán un boleto gratis para Six Flags. Este registro se vence el 21 de febrero. ¡Feliz lectura!

Author Visits, Managing Screen Time Over the Holidays, and Library Fundraiser

I love hosting authors at OAES because it allows our students to realize that regular people write and create books. We’ve had two more amazing author visits recently.  In October Joey Weiser shared with our 4th and 5th grade about the process of creating his graphic novel series Mermin.  The kids loved his presentation.  I have had to order an additional 15 copies from our lovely local Avid Bookshop because these books don’t stay on the shelves.

Avid bookseller Caleb Zane Huett visited in early December to promote his book Top Elf.  During this visit, Caleb modeled how to write a story using our students’ suggestions.  It was tons of fun!  At both visits, students won copies of books in our super special raffle.  Top Elf is another book that doesn’t stay on our shelves!

Looking for holiday presents?  Copies of books from all of our recent author visits- Mermin, Top Elf, Juniper Gets Wet, and The Girl Who Kept Night in Her Closet– may be purchased at Avid Bookshop.  If you’d like to purchase books for the library any time of the year, head over to our fundraiser page at Bound to Stay Bound. Thanks in advance for your support!

During break, students might be tempted to spend a lot of time on screens, a practice which can lead to lack of sleep, aggression, social problems, and obesity.  Families Managing Media has some great suggestions for activities instead, which include encouraging your child to play with Legos, blocks, Play-doh, to solve puzzles, create art, read, play musical instruments, and more. As a parent, I try to manage media consumption by not allowing screens in the bedroom, by setting time limits on how long my son stays on screens, and by modeling media use, something I’ve accomplished by limiting my social media use. OAES students are always amazed to hear that my 16 year old son is a proud carrier of a flip phone:).

Regardless, I hope you have a happy holiday! Happy Reading!

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Amazing Author Visit with Bart King and Jacob Wenzka

Last week author Bart King and illustrator Jacob Wenzka visited our K through 3rd grades. They discussed how they work together to create their picture books JUNIPER GETS WET and THE GIRL WHO KEPT NIGHT IN HER CLOSET. Our students were thrilled to learn about the process of making a book, editing, and seeing how Bart shares stick figure drawings with Jacob to convey his ideas.  They loved watching Jacob demonstrate how he sketches out ideas.  Several lucky students won a book, which were personally signed by our visitors! Didn’t get a book of your own?  Contact Mrs. Sugiuchi. Big thanks to Ms. Lewis for taking pictures and helping run the show and special thanks to Ms. Herbert for sharing her space!

On Friday, November 3, 4th and 5th grade will have a special author visit with Joey Weiser, author and illustrator of the popular MERMIN series.  He also colored several popular graphic novels from our collection, including LUNCH LADY, JEDI ACADEMY, and the SECRET SCIENCE ALLIANCE.  Want a signed copy of his MERMIN books?  Volumes 1-3 are available for only $11.69, and volumes 4-5 are only $17.99.  Please make checks payable to OAES.

In other library news, we wrapped up our book fair. We earned $1000 in scholastic books and $440 cash which will be used to support our media program. Thank you to all of our volunteers!

We also have been continuing our lessons on cybersafety in the upper grades, and have been exploring narratives in the lower grades. AS always, we talk about the importance of reading.  Have you turned in your reading log?  They are due today!

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The Book Fair Is Coming, BTSB Wishlist, and More!

More than anything, I want our students to love reading.  Each time our students visit the library, I show them how I track my reading on a reading log.  I also have made a reading wall of all the books from our library that I have read.  I add to this every week.

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Today we celebrated our Reading Rock Stars at WOW.  Close to 200 students turned in reading logs! In the past, we randomly chose 12 students K-5 to win a prize.  This year we are also having those same four students share something  from their reading life on the Reading Rock Star window near the cafeteria. Last month I displayed pictures and quotes from our summer reading rock stars.

One way to buy books for your home and support the library is by shopping at our Scholastic Book Fair which will take place October 10-13.  If you would like to VOLUNTEER to help at the BOOK FAIR, please sign up here.

We have a special fundraiser at BTSB where you can purchase books to support our library.  Check out our wishlist here. 

This week in the the upper grades have been focusing on learning how to stay safe online and not sharing private information.  PK and I read my all time favorite book , WHERE the WILD THINGS ARE.  K and I discussed community helpers using the book WELCOME TO MY NEIGHBORHOOD, A BARRIO ABC, and 1st Grade and I learned about the importance of following your dreams with DRUM DREAM GIRL.

Don’t forget to read every night and write it down on your reading log.  Happy Reading!

 

 

 

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Every Single One of Us Needs to Read!

I love books and I love kids, which is why I’m a children’s librarian. My goal is for every kid at OAES to recognize how important it is to read. I can’t explain it any better than Jason Reynolds, author of GHOST and of GA Book Award Nominee AS BRAVE AS YOU,  does in this video. He reminds us why “Every single one of us needs to read.”

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I read every day. Each week I share my reading logs with our students so they will know that I am not just asking them to read and record it on their reading logs, but that I am reading as well.

 

When I was in the first grade, I won the reading contest at my school. I found it exciting to be rewarded for reading. It motivated me to become a better reader. I’ve tried to replicate that thrill for our students with the Reading Rock Star program (details here). Please encourage your children to read every night and to record  what they read on their reading log (linked here). September reading logs are due September 26.

One way I stay excited about reading is by visiting the library.  I often search the online library catalog before I go to the library so that I have time to browse. I have been teaching grades 2-5 to access our online library catalog.

However, this week, due to Tropical Storm Irma, the students and I have been reading a nonfiction book, HURRICANES, which describes how hurricanes form.  Afterwards we have been reading an incredible fictionalized account of surviving a hurricane, Myron Uhlberg’s A STORM CALLED KATRINA. Colin Bootman’s illustrations are exquisite!

 

Lastly, Ms. Goeckeritz (4th grade) made this incredibly sweet video about our media center at OAES.  You can learn about our media program here. Thanks Ms. Goeckeritz!

 

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