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SLS Update 03/26/2015



1.       As part of our Maker Spaces grant from RRLC, the School Library System purchased littleBits for use in our school libraries.  In essence, think of Legos with built in electronics.  They can and will spark creativity with students, great springboard for Inquiry Based Learning, ideal for STEM related projects…

·         For more information:

·         TED Talk on them:

·         After Spring break, we will begin to loan them out to our librarians.  Note, due to the grant, these need to stay library based and can only be signed out by librarians.

·         We will have 4 base kits available and two “bigger” kits. 

·         Stay tuned for more information!

2.       Upcoming Professional Development workshops:

·         Best New Books for Children with Cathy Henderson and Stacy Martine.  April 15 from 4:45-5:15 at the Gates Public Library.  Open to teachers and librarians.

                                                               i.      How do you raise a reader?  What's new in children's literature?  What's so important about kids reading books in this online age?  Join us for a session with public librarians from the Monroe County Public Library System to learn what is new in children's literature and find some gems that you can use with your students.

·         High School and College Librarian Meeting.  April 28 from 12-3 at Monroe 2 BOCES (Big Ridge Road).

                                                               i.      In Closing the Loop we will focus on information literacy and research skills students need to be college ready.  Sample topics include: citations, databases, and other essential tools needed for best practices in college-level research and presentation. This meeting will recap then build upon the work started in June 2014 between high school and college librarians.  It will also incorporate work completed at the winter event that expanded to incorporate high school teachers and administrators and addressed research skills and traits expected of students entering their freshmen year of college.  Attendance at prior workshops is not required, and new participants are welcome.

·         Best New Books for Young Adults with Deena Viviani.  May 6 (NEW DATE) from 3:45-4:45 at Gates Public Library.   Open to teachers and librarians.

                                                               i.      Young Adult Literature is in a boom period, with dozens of titles being released every month.  Help keep on top of some great reads from the past six months that you may have missed with this workshop focusing on new fiction, non-fiction, and graphic novels.  A series of quick book talks will highlight contemporary, dystopian, paranormal, sci-fi, and historical YA works - and more!

·         Inventory within Follett Destiny.  May 27 from 3:45-4:45 at Monroe 2 BOCES (CaTS Building- Buffalo Rd)

                                                               i.      This one-hour class will give you the resources you need to return to your library and conduct an inventory using Destiny Library Manager.

·         Follett Tricks to Make Life Easier.  June 3 from 3:45-4:45 at Monroe 2 BOCES (CaTS Building- Buffalo Rd)

                                                               i.      The Library Automation Team will answer your submitted questions and share user tools during this one-hour class.  Topics can include managing 'old' book reviews and out dated patron notes as well as recommended catalog display setting.  Submit your questions when enrolling by emailing

3.       Attached is information for an upcoming workshop on May 4: Connecting the Dots, Cultivating Coherence Through Text Sets.

·         In this session, participants will identify features of strong text sets, understand the steps in creating text sets, work with tools (such as databases) for locating text, and learn considerations for determining whether texts are worthy of inclusion in a set.

·         Note- there is a cost associated with this workshop

4.       There are only a couple seats left for the May 21st Inquiry Based Learning workshop with Dr. Barbara Stripling.  If you plan on attending and haven’t already registered please contact Patti Rose ( ASAP. 

5.       The links for your Cavendish Square and most of your Marshall Cavendish titles have been updated to a new platform. 

·         One platform to access items from both companies

·         This platform will work on any device- this will resolve the iPad issue

·         Note- there are still around 130 titles from Marshall Cavendish that did not migrate to the new platform.  These titles were not part of the sale of the company.  For now they are still on the old platform but we are exploring other options

6.       Reminder, April 1st is the deadline for the Digies submissions.  For more information please visit:

7.       AASL is looking to showcase school libraries for the 30th anniversary of School Library Month as they relate to the Declaration for the Right to School Libraries.  If you would like to participate (50 words or less and pictures) please visit:

8.       WXXI Updates:

·         Attached is a flyer for the WXXI Kids Writing Contest open to all students in grades K-3.  Please share with your teachers!  Students can do this on their own or as part of a class project.

·         Attached are the April 2015 WXXI Off-Air Highlights.  Reminder, the Media Library can record any shows you would like and send it to you via DVD.  To request a show be tapped please use the Off Air Request Form.

·         On March 30th, WXXI will be airing the newest Ken Burns documentary: Cancer: Emperor of all Maladies.  The focus is on the history of cancer and it is based on the book Emperor of all Maladies by Dr. Siddartha Mukherjee.

·         March 30th there will be a free screening at the Little of The Homestretch which is about homelessness and teens.  It shows the struggles they face to stay in school and graduate whiles being homeless

·         The PBS Interactive Game website Mission US ( released a new mission: City of Immigrants.  This is about a 14 year old Russian immigrant in NY City in 1907.  Other missions include: A Cheyenne Odyssey (1866), Flight to Freedom (1848) and For Crown or Colony (1770).

                                                               i.      All missions include primary source documents

                                                             ii.      The missions are geared towards grades 4-8

                                                           iii.      This missions are free

9.       MyOn will make available their digital library this summer (4,500 titles) to any interested district at no cost.  This is an effort to help stop the summer slide.  For more information, please contact the MyOn sales representative Bob Bone.

10.   Brockport school district librarians are creating advocacy videos to share with their administration and school community.  The latest video is a hoot!  I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND you take the few minutes to watch it- it is well worth the laugh J  PS- Kathy, Pamela, Cathy, Suzanne, and Jennifer- THANK YOU for making my day when I watched this!




Jim Belair
Coordinator – School Library Systems
Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES
Desk: (585) 349-9099
Cell: (585) 465-9906
Fax: (585) 349-9090


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