The Tuscany Heights librarian provides instructional support through lessons that reinforce the K-5 grade level curriculum in various content areas.All grade levels use a variety of library resources to conduct research using the guided inquiry method.
Examples of this year's research:
Kindergarten students researched animals with 4th grade partners before their annual zoo field trip. Each child chose an animal that interested them. With the help of a 'big buddy', kindergartners took notes using PebbleGo (iPads) and print resources. Older students helped them write a script showcasing animal facts After taking a photo of their animal, kindergartners used the ChatterKid app to bring their animal to life. They also created color illustrations of their animals and cited their resources. Older and younger students benefited from the collaborative research.
Using the Guided Inquiry research method which encourages exploratory play, 1st graders investigated how advances in technology have changed/improved communication, transportation and recreation. Students played with reproductions of early American colonial toys in order to compare/contrast toys from the past with modern toys. After taking notes, they created short videos on Seesaw to document and shared their discoveries with teachers and parents.
4th grade students researched energy (potential and kinetic) using the library resource(s) of their choice: BrainPop, Britannica School Edition, SIRS Discoverer, Discovery Streaming, etc. They also experimented with energy by conducting simple experiments with Hot Wheels cars and race tracks. For example, students tested how the height of the track or weight of the car affected the distance that the car traveled along the track. They used Class Dojo or Seesaw to record video segments to share their findings with classmates, parents and teachers.
Collaboration is key to any successful library program. The librarian frequently meets with teachers (formally and informally) to plan throughout the year to ensure that student/faculty needs are being met. For example, at the beginning of the school year, each team of teachers fills out a library research 'wish list'. Each grade level team assigns a teacher to be a library liaison. Having one teacher serving as the main contact saves valuable time and allows for a faster turnaround of library services. A focus on technology integration, especially the use of Chromebooks,iPads and other devices, is incorporated into library lessons to enhance student learning and promote the use of technology skills.