Blog Posts

Library Learning Goals

Our Library Time

Last week’s library game was a success! Arjun (in second grade) said, while we were playing the game, “I think this game teaches us about our library!”. And that’s exactly what it did. Students had to find books from the different sections of the library, they had to show what quiet reading looks like, or had to answer a question about their reading habits and preferences. We played and learned together!

Here are a few photos taken during the game with a second grade. Notice how we’re getting closer to the board as we play the game! It was very exciting!

Here are photos of the end result of several of the games we played:

After the exciting energy of the game, students checked out their books and did some quiet reading.

With the Foundation classes we finished reading Library Lion and worked on understanding what fiction books are and what non-fiction books are. We will do this again next week, in the form of a sorting game. We will be connecting different words for the same category (made-up stories or stories from the writer’s imagination, for example, for fiction), as well as placing books in the correct category (fiction or non-fiction). We’ll be reading (parts of) Do You Know Dewey? by Brian P. Cleary to give the students an idea of what kind of topics they can find in our non-fiction section.

Next week, in PYP 1 – 5, we will be working on our Library Learning Goals (as part of the First Six Weeks of School, matching the Responsive Classroom approach). These learning goals, together with how we want our library to sound like, look like and feel like, will inform our library agreements. We would like to build and maintain a library learning environment in which all students can work on (and reach) their library learning goal. But in order to do that, we first need to think about, draft, fine-tune, and then commit to our goals (or Hopes and Dreams as they were previously called)! Next week, we focus on writing a draft of our Library Learning Goal. The week after, we will fine-tune and finalize them.

Perhaps you are familiar with the poem Magic Carpet by Shel Silverstein? I’ve used it in lessons and workshops before: it’s simple and very inspiring.

I’ve re-written this poem a bit, so I can use it to introduce the idea of creating Library Learning Goals:

Magic Library

You have a magic library

That you will visit every week.

You can find fiction, facts, even manga,

Whatever it is you seek.

So will you make your library time

As magical as it can be,

Or will you wander off

And miss this

Fantastic

Opportunity?

We can connect our Library Learning Goal to the IB Learner Profile Attitudes and to the ATL-skills (Approaches To Learning). We will end our brainstorming session with this poem, also by Shel Silverstein:

Resources

We would like to share with you our latest, newest non-fiction titles:

The new Storytime is here! Ready to be checked out from our school library, but is also accessible as a pdf, including the activity pack.

I would also like to draw your attention to the fact that it is WordKidLit Month, “reading the world through kids’ books in translation”. Follow the WorldKidLit blog here!

Your Read Aloud Language

As you maybe know, I write a monthly guest blog for the Dutch sister of Storytime (called ERWASEENS). For this month’s blog, I will be writing about raising children in a multilingual environment, focusing on reading aloud. I was hoping you’d be willing to share some of your read aloud experiences with me which I can include in my guest blog by filling out this form. Totally voluntary, of course. Thank you!

Thank you for reading our library blog and staying up to date with our library learning!

Happy Reading,

Fleur

Time for a Game

Last week, we started our library session with a combined greeting/sharing game. We greeted one another, and everyone got a chance to share. Students talked about what they want the library to look like, sound and feel like. I wrote it down on the poster paper (each class has their own Y-chart). Students could add to it later, if they thought of something after the sharing turn. We will use this again in a few weeks to see if our current library rules still match our expectations and wishes for our library time this school year. With some classes we had time to play “Follow the Leader” (or “Conductor” as some students know the game), which was very fun!

This school year, I’ve been feeling inspired by the Library Lion, and I chose this picture book to read to the Foundation students. They are new to the library, and we are slowly introducing our library and our library routines to them. This week, we showed them the picture book section. Next week, we will show them the non-fiction section (which is very big!). Foundation students will always choose no more than one book to check out. Students who have not returned their book, can’t check any out. So please help your child to remember to bring their book to school on their library day, so they can return it to the library. Thank you!

My plan was to allow students to only check out one book, to get back into the returning-your-book-routine. But the students were so excited to read, and most wanted to check out two books last week. As Sophie pointed out, why stop that?! And she’s right! It was great to see their positive attitude towards reading. That is our mission: to guide students with their book choices, so they can experience the joy of reading! Our official library mission statement is the following:

Our library’s mission is to provide a diverse and inclusive collection of high quality fiction and non-fiction resources for our ISGR one school community. Our library and its activities reflect ISGR’s school values by celebrating diversity and providing global perspectives. We aim to maintain a welcoming and accessible library environment where students feel a sense of belonging, ownership and responsibility and where reading for pleasure is at the forefront. Our goal is that students can independently choose appropriate resources that will develop their literacy skills and nurture their personal interests and academic inquiries. Library staff are engaged in guiding and supporting students, building the foundations for students to become lifelong readers and critical thinkers. 

Next week, we will work with the different kind of books that are available in the library, as well as what kind of activities we can do during library time. This is important, as in a few weeks students will think about, discuss and share their library learning goal (which we will write/draw on a bookmark). But before you can develop your library learning goal, it is good to be reminded of what you can find in our library, what kind of things we do, and what kind of reader you currently are.

Because I love board games, and since we can’t have our board game club after school due to the pandemic, I decided to make our own library lion board game! Two library lions (that way more students can have a turn) need to get to the library before it closes in 15 minutes! On the way, they need to find lost books, show us possible library activities, and answer some questions about the kind of reader they are. We will play this during our circle time. Our group goal is to get our library lions to the library before it closes for the day! Will we make it? (The tasks on the cards are differentiated according to the grade level).

We’ve switched out some of our books on the displays. Have a look!

Then, to round off this blog post, I would like to let you know that we had 36 students who successfully participated in the ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021! The notebooks have been ordered, and will hopefully arrive in a few weeks. Now we can start thinking about the ISGR Winter Reading Challenge 21-22!

Sincerely,

Your Library Teacher Fleur

Getting to know each other

It was humbling to see all the smiling and exciting students coming through our library door last week, and the week before! When we played the “library game” (see photo), it became apparent how well the students know the library, and how easily they explained how our library routines work. We have a great foundation on which we can build even greater library experiences! And then to hear from a teacher that her class had said that Monday is their favorite day because they have their library time then, just makes our day!

Next week, we will be playing several circle games that will help us to get know each other, feel connected to one another and allow us to share what our expectations are in our library. We will work with the Y-chart, often used in Responsive Classrooms, to answer the question: What do we want our library to sound like, look like and feel like? These wishes and expectations will inform our library rules.

All students will be checking out one book again. From week 36 on, students in grades 2 and up will be checking out two books. All students are welcome just before school (8.20 – 8.30, not on Wednesdays) and just after school (14.30 – 15.00) to check out additional books, but students can never have more than three books in total out on loan.

We have received 22 submissions for our ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021 so far. Remember that this Tuesday (August 31st) is our last day to submit!

Have a readingful rest of your weekend!

Fleur

201st Post

This is the 201st Post! It is actually not hard to believe that we’ve had so much to share with you. There’s a lot of learning happening in the library every week!

This will also probably be the shortest post I’ve written. I just want to let you know that, because our school week started on Wednesday last week, the students who have their library lesson today and tomorrow will have their first library lesson in the way I described in my last post. The students who have their library lessons on Thursday and Friday this week, will have a “bonus first lesson” with an extra hide-and-seek game: Where is Wally in the library!

Next week, all classes will have the same learning goal but the activities will be adjusted to their grade level. So this means all classes will have their second lesson in our “First Six Weeks in the Library” introductory sessions. More about that in our next blog post on Sunday evening (August 29th).

For now: happy reading in the sunshine!

Your PYP Library Teacher,

Fleur

Welcome. Again!

Please note that the library opening times are Monday – Friday 8.20 – 15.00. Except for Wednesday mornings when the library opens at 8.45.

Dear Readers,

Today is the first day of a brand new school year! You have received a welcome letter from our Head of School, Birgitta Sandström Barac. You have received a warm welcome from our PYP Principal Lee Brown, as well as from our complete PYP Leadership Team, including deputy-principal Vanessa Molina Gabinus and PYP coordinator Ellen Trelles. And before these welcomes, you have been greeted by our Admissions Team James Teasdale and Adriana Koscianska. I hope you feel very, very welcome to our ISGR School Community, because you are. 🙂

Now it’s my turn to welcome you! My name is Fleur, and I am the PYP library teacher at ISGR. Sophie (our librarian) and I would like to welcome you to the school library. If you are a PYP student, I will see you every week in the library during your library time. If you are an LGRP student, Sophie will see you every week, or every other week, depending on which grade you’re in. The LGRP students will receive information about that from their teachers. Sophie also supports our PYP classes throughout the week when they visit the library. I work every day except for Wednesday, and Sophie is in the library from Tuesday – Friday.

The best way to contact us is by email. Click here to get to the “contact” page. For our rules & routines click here. We hope you will follow our library blog (with just one click!) this school year. Then you will never miss out on our weekly updates about our library sessions, special events and inspiration to read!

First things first: if you’re a returning students, and you’ve completed the ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021, please email me (fleur.doornberg-puglisi@isgr.se) with your work before August 31st. You can also hand it in when we see each other in the library. I will send an email either congratulating you on successfully completing the challenge, or with some requests for additional work in order to complete the challenge. I am looking forward to seeing your work!

The latest Storytime issue has arrived in the library, and is ready to be checked out! As always, you can access the read-aloud magazine online, as well as the activity pack that goes with it. You can subscribe to their blog with “Thoughts on stories for kids, illustration, creating a children’s magazine, reading for pleasure, improving childhood literacy, and more from the makers of Storytime.”

During our library sessions in our first six weeks of school, we will be focusing on getting to know each other, learning about the library, and how we can all work together to make the library a welcoming and joyful place to be.

This first library lesson, our focus question is, “What do you know about this library?”. We will play a game with dice and cards as a fun and engaging way to assess and share our knowledge of the library. We will also play a finding game in the library, to practice our walking feet and whispering voices. All students are invited to check out one library book during their first library lesson.

Grades 2 and up will be allowed to check out two books during their library lesson from week 36 on. This is to give time to practice library routines, and to remember to return your library book every week! If students wish to check out more than one book in the next two weeks, they’re welcome just before school starts (8.20 – 8.30, except for Wednesdays) and just after school ends (14.30 – 15.00) to swap their books or borrow additional books. Students are allowed a maximum of three books checked out on their accounts.

As a parent, we ask you to support your children by reading the library book at home, keeping the book safe, and returning it on time the next week. Thank you!

You can’t start a new year, without new books! Look at the photos below to see which books have just come in! We’ve set quite a few up on the displays, but we’ve got more book surprises to come over the next few weeks. Keep your eyes peeled!

That was it for this week! Our weekly blog posts will be published every Sunday evening. Stay tuned!

We are looking forward to a fantastically fun and readingful year!

Yours,

Sophie & Fleur

Sophie & Fleur (after a long walk in the heat!)

P.S. If you’ve read my summer break post on this blog, you will know that there was an online Scholastic Family Book Fest! I especially enjoyed the author interview with Tui T. Sutherland, the writer of the Wings of Fire series. It was very interesting to hear the process behind her writing, and to learn that Wings of Fire will be turned into an animated tv series! You can watch all of the events of the Scholastic Family Book Fest 2021 on demand. Enjoy!

31st of July: Family Bookfest

We still have a few weeks of summer holidays ahead of us, so this is not a post about what we are doing in the library or what stories we will be reading aloud. I just wanted to let you know that I came across an online Family Bookfest event that will be taking place on Saturday, the 31st of July. It is organized by Scholastic and completely free. All readers and ages will find something they’ll enjoy, especially Wings of Fire and Harry Potter fans! Times are in EST, which means that you have to add six hours to make it our time. So it’s a bit late for some of our younger ISGR readers, but maybe that’s okay in the summer holidays?

Follow this link to join the event. See you there!

Also on the 31st, the Dutch sister of the Storytime magazine (the one we have in our library) will be posting my third “guest blog”. In these monthly guest blogs, I write about the importance of reading aloud, ways of reading aloud and what reading aloud can look like in the home, school and library setting. It is written in Dutch, so not very useful to most of you, but I wanted to let you know since most of my inspiration for these guest blogs comes from the students (your children!) in our library. In future posts, the guest blogs might include photos of our read aloud sessions in the library. This will only happen with your permission, of course.

If you are curious, you can click here to see my guest blog pop up on the 31st, or look for my previous guest blogs (published on the last day of each month).

If you haven’t yet, it’s not too late to start on your ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021! I’m looking forward to seeing your completed challenge in the first week of school (either in my email inbox, or printed off). The present will involve paper, a pen and a Summer Reading Challenge sticker: in what shape or form is not completely clear yet. But who cares, it’s about the fun of reading, right? Happy Reading!

For now, I wish you a beautiful rest of the summer!

Summer Reading Greetings!

Fleur (and from Sophie too!)

Remember to Read!

Here is the promised last blog post of the school year 2020 – 2021. We hope this year was as much fun and interesting for your child(ren) as it was for us! Sophie and I loved teaching your children, and inspiring them to read. We would like to thank you for your support, and your encouragement to motivate your child(ren) to read at home as well.

As we are entering the long summer holidays, remember to join our ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021!

And of course, remember to read! You can find many teachers and researchers who have experienced and studied something labeled the “summer slide”, where students don’t read over the summer and their literacy skills decrease. Instead, we advocate lots of reading over the summer. You can read more about reasons why here; they even give you lists of suggestions per grade level. I especially agree with their last statement: “Don’t forget to keep reading fun. The lists are just suggestions for summer reading. Give your child the opportunity to choose books on his/her own as well. This can help keep reading interesting and inviting. Reading over the summer is a necessity, but it should also be fun!”

I found this blog post, by Oxford Learning, clear and informative. They tell you about reasons to keep reading during the summer as well as excellent ideas as to how to accomplish that. I like that these suggestions are not incentive based, and are simply fed by the rewarding joy of reading!

Your first step to a readingful summer, is the short walk to your local library! Ask the librarian about summer programmes that they run for children. My local library, for example, runs a book club during the summer months and children can fill up a “summer book bag” with library books. They can then choose a free (brand new) book to keep forever. How incredible is that?! So be sure to hop in your local library and ask about their summer reading programmes. In our previous post you can find out more about becoming a member of the public library. It’s free and easy. As a matter of fact, many students have come up to me to tell me that their parents have now created a library account for them. Hurray!

And if your child is allowed some screen time over the summer, maybe this could be a fun website to explore. A treasury of actors reading aloud classics and new picture books. Happy listening!

Rest us only to wish you a fun, restful and beautiful summer break!

Happy Summer! And of course:

Happy Reading!

Sophie & Fleur

The Last Days…

We are entering the last week, the last few days of school before the long summer break. With this glorious weather it certainly feels like summer already!

Students enjoyed playing chess, logical games and with the story cubes, coloring bookmarks and browsing the “yellow box” (more about the “yellow box” later) last week. Some students chose to read the books that are otherwise always checked out (Dog Man, for example!). Most students have returned all their library books. Thank you! If your child hasn’t yet, please be sure they do this next week. The library will be open!

In last week’s post, we explained how to get a public library card, as well as where you can find your closest library branch. When I told students (last week during their last library lesson) about the fact that all the public libraries in Göteborg work together, and that you can reserve books which will then be brought to your local branch – they were positively suprised! If you haven’t already, please be sure to get your child(ren) a public library card. It’s easy and totally free!

Last week during our library lesson, we also talked about the ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021! Download this (revised) pdf if your child didn’t bring the paper home and is interested in participating:

Feel free to email me (fleur.doornberg-puglisi@staff.isgr.se) if you have any questions. Students were curious about what the present will be, but we are still figuring that out. It won’t be a book bag! 😉 Something reading/writing related, of course, with an ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021 print on it, so it will serve as a memento of their completed challenge.

Sophie and I have gone through the whole fiction section, and pulled out worn-out, damaged, and outdated books that we feel like we don’t need or want in the library anymore. But we do think they can get a second life with our students. These withdrawn books, which we used to put in a yellow box, are free for the students to take home, to keep forever. These ex-library books have either a cross through our barcode, or it has W/D (withdrawn) written over our library address stamp. Just so it is very clear that they don’t belong to us anymore, and that students can keep them at home to read! There will be more withdrawn books available to take home forever, next week. Students can come after school to choose the books they’d like.

With all the books returned, and the fiction section tidied up, you can see just how many fantastic books we have! Eagerly waiting for their readers to return in August.

The new Storytime magazine (#82) is on its way from England, but as always, you are welcome to get a head start with the pdf version of this colorful read aloud magazine. They’ve also provided a teaching resource pack with many linked activities for this edition, which could be fun to work with over the summer holidays!

Next week, we won’t have any library lessons, although the library will be open for students to return their last books. The classes who have their library time on Tuesday, will come to the library as normal though, for some quiet reading/coloring/logical games time.

In our next blog post, we will give you some reading routine ideas for the summer and a few reading tips to maintain your child’s interest and enjoyment in reading.

Until then,

Happy Reading!

Your Libary Team,

Sophie & Fleur

Reading and Returning

Only one full week of library lessons left!

All PYP students are asked to return their library books next week. This is true for most LGRP classes too. There are one or two LGRP classes who will be returning their books on Monday, the 14th of June. Contact Sophie for details: sophie.arnold@staff.isgr.se

During circle time in our library lessons next week, I will tell the students how to become a member of the public library. For the ones who are interested, they can take a registration form home. You can also create a public library account online. Our school library will be closed during the summer break, but most public libraries will be open. Find the library branch close to your house here. There are so many! If you want a book that is at one of the other branches in the city, you can reserve it and they will deliver it to your branch. That is what you call service!

Students will be invited to join the ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021! Flyers will be handed out during the lesson as well. Or you can download this pdf:

After we’ve had our last story time of this school year (boohoo!), students will have time to color a bookmark, play chess, work with magnetic poetry, story cubes or do some other logical games. Or sit and read, of course!

The sun is shining; it’s time to go out and enjoy this beautiful weekend!

Happy Reading,

Fleur

Swimming into June: World Oceans Day

Last week, we read a great mix of stories during our library lessons: Zoo, and Into the Forest by Anthony Browne. We read all the stories out of the Storytime magazine, to different classes of course. But the grade 5 students chose for extra quiet reading time (they just love to curl up and read their books!). We will read aloud again in these classes next week!

We had our two last Cirkus Unik workshops, funded by the Creative School (Skapande Skolan) project which is a grant from the National Council of the Arts (Kulturrådet). It was a success. As one of the teachers wrote in an email reflecting on the workshop with her class: “Some of the students really showed off their talent for balancing, eye-hand coordination, and gross motor movement.  There were lots of smiles!”

Next week, we will celebrate World Oceans Day (June 8th) by reading Prince Fire Flash and Prince Fire Fade – A Japanese Story, from the A Year Full of Stories book. I will share non-fiction books with the students about oceans, as well as stories we have about feelings of anger, sadness and forgiveness (which are themes of the story). We will also reflect on what this story is teaching us, what this story is really about (as they are two storylines presented in this story). I am curious to see which elements of the story will stand out to the different students, as I don’t think there is one correct interpretation!

We have also put up new displays, observing current events (Eric Carle’s passing, Göteborg’s 400th Birthday, and the upcoming summer break):

Like we determined in the last post, the weeks are flying by! Here’s the overview:

Week 22 (31/5 – 4/6): Read aloud & circle time, return/check out books, return all public library books! (We have currently 29 public library books out on loan for our students).

Week 23 (7/6 – 11/6): Read aloud & circle time, just returning books! Color/folding bookmarks, chess, magnetic poetry, logical games. We will be chasing overdues by sending parents emails to help their child find and return ALL library books! Introduction ISGR Summer Reading Challenge 2021!

Week 24 (14/6 – 16/6): No library lessons, but classes can come up to have some quiet reading time during their library time with their teacher (teacher’s discretion).

LGRP classes will be returning during weeks  23 AND 24 depending on the classes schedule. Teachers and children will be told but parents can contact Sophie to clarify (sophie.arnold@staff.isgr.se). 

Hope this beautiful summer weather will accompany us through the last three weeks with your beautiful children!

Yours,

Sophie & Fleur