From the Research Center

Website literacy

How can we help students with digital literacy?

We often assume that students are able to figure out context clues of websites when they are searching.  However, they don't always have the background knowledge they need.

Sometimes they miss important clues about bias and purpose of a site.   Debbie Abilock (of Noodletools) suggests we model aloud how we think through context clues.   This short webinar of her strategies is an excellent example of how to lead your students to analyze websites better!    

(Of course, students will not typically take this length of time to analyze sites, but by modeling our strategies aloud, we help strengthen their habits of mind when approaching information.)

Helpful websites!

Check out these  image websites we discovered at TCEA : searches flickr for student-appropriate, copyright free images.  When students download the image, it automatically stamps the citation info on them! removes the ads and comments from YouTube videos for safe showing.

What's Going on in that Picture(NYTimes) -- a new picture every Monday asks students to guess the context behind the photograph; every Tuesday the details are revealed.  Good for writing prompts, geography, and visual literacy

Bibliography help...

As students start spring research projects, just a reminder that we have lots of bibliography help on our website (click on the bibliography tab).

Check out some of our cool new tools for the classroom.   We've just received, thanks to the PTO, a set of Huddleboards that can be checked out for your classroom or used in the library or labs!    Huddleboards are smaller whiteboards that you can use for groupwork, designing, and brainstorming purposes.   A hanging rack can display each board for class discussions.

We also now have two Spheros.  What's a Sphero?  It's a little round robot that can be programmed with easy to use prexisting iPad apps

Spheros can even be used for formative assessment.  For example, gamify review sessions and get students moving to learn by using Sphero to "roll" to the correct answers in the classroom. 

For many more ways Sphero can be programmed for use in your subject area, check here: or

We also just got our first GoPro camera! Use GoPro to make dynamic videos in your classroom, for student projects or athletic events and more!    

Oscar contest

Our Oscar contest is starting next week--look for announcements soon!

Beautiful graphic design

Help students add polish to their work with these excellent graphic design sites:

Tackk and Smore -- build scrollable documents like this one that can be embedded on your school webpage.

Canva -- create posters, signs, presentation backgrounds with great design features already built in.

Buncee -- create presentations, images, posters, and digital story albums.  Free educator accounts.  Useful for LOTE, CTE, and all subject areas.

Need your input!

We will be starting up a library focus group soon to help us chart our way into the future. We will have a few meetings to do some visioning for our library spaces.

If you are interested in helping us, let Jackie or Carolyn know!

Food for thought...

We'll end with some food for thought from educator David Jakes --

"How big is my classroom? Four walls or to the horizon?"  -- TCEA15

Let the library staff know how we can help expand your classroom!  

Trivia -- win movie candy!

What actress has won the most Best Actress Oscars at the Academy Awards?

(We will pick two of you w/right answers to win movie candy. Please EMAIL us the answers!)

Author Austin Kleon Wednesday