LTC Flashback February 10–14


Photo 500With snow days, Valentine’s Day, and this being the last week of school before February vacation, it was pretty quiet in the LTC. However, it was a great week to celebrate the recent ALA Youth Media Awards of 2014!

Since most of us participated in the Pine Glen Mock Caldecott, we have been eagerly awaiting the announcement of the winner of the real Caldecott Medal (and the Newbery, the Geisel, the Sibert, the Coretta Scott King, the Pura Belpre, and the Schneider–so many great awards!)

Below is the video playlist we used in class to introduce students to this year’s winners. We watched an Animoto of all the winners, we showed some of the books, and we watched some of the book trailers. Needless to say, we shared lots of beautiful books that the students are excited to start reading!

LTC Flashback February 3-7



We are creating our own Pigeon book covers. You’ll have to wait until next week to see them!

First Grade

We are becoming chixperts . . . research experts about chickens. We’re using resources to find answers to our questions and taking notes. Ms. Smith is doing an amazing job using a RAN chart (Reading & Analyzing Nonfiction) to organize her students’ learning.


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Second Grade

We learned how to find and save copyright friendly images of our country to use in our Book Creator project.

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Third Grade

It’s that time of year when third grade students learn how to use their login to Destiny Quest. They are learning about all the different things you can do in Destiny when you are logged in.

Fourth Grade

We are continuing to use our LTC time to work on our Book Creator Writing project.

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Fifth Grade

Ms. Marcus’s class continued to work on their video book review project. We are learning how to use a storyboard for movie planning.

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In addition . . .

Mrs. D’Elia and Mr. Callahan presented to the Administrative Council meeting this week about their combined library & technology program.

Mr. Callahan worked with Mrs. Fitzpatrick’s ELA class to create images in Drawing Pad to represent vivid imagery in poetry. Next week they’re going to turn it into a book.

The iTechs had their first help request from Mrs. Guanci! We’ll post more about the iTechs soon!

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Pine Glen Mock Caldecott


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November was picture book month and Pine Glen students had a great time reading and sharing favorite picture books. So, it was natural to want to continue our love for the picture book by participating in our very first Mock Caldecott. The Caldecott Medal is a prestigious children’s literature award given every year to “the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.” Participating in a Mock Caldecott is also a great way to incorporate our Love of Reading standard “Evaluates grade appropriate quality children’s literature” into the curriculum.

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We pretended to be Caldecott judges by reading picture books with strong illustrations, applying criteria, and voting for a winner. We used the same criteria that the real Caldecott judges use but we changed the language to be kid-friendly:

  • Does the illustrator have excellent artistic technique?
  • Do the illustrations help to tell the story beyond the words?
  • Does the style of the illustrations match the mood and tone of the story?
  • Is it appropriate and/or appealing to children?

Based on the Mock Caldecott lists of many wonderful school librarians that I follow on Twitter (#mockcaldecott), we chose eight nominees:


We used a chart to help us keep track of our scores.

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After weeks of reading, evaluating, judging, and scoring, Pine Glen students voted for a winner . . .

Congratulations to

Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great! by Bob Shea!

(and Pine Glen students think it’s pretty great, too)

On January 22, 2014 the real ALA Youth Media Awards were announced including this year’s Caldecott Medal winner and honor books. To see all of this year’s winners, watch the quick video below.

I know what you’re thinking . . . did the students of Pine Glen pick the same book as the real Caldecott winner? You’ll have to watch the video to find out . . .

LTC Flashback: January 27–31



We continued our lessons on the Geisel Award and Mo Willems by creating our own Pigeon stories using the “Don’t Let the Pigeon Run this App!” app.

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First Grade

We began a new project where we are going to learn a little about Digital Citizenship and using the Book Creator app. We are going to create a class iBook of the Do’s and Don’ts of using technology. We asked the students, “What do next year’s first graders need to know about using technology?” We brainstormed what the different kinds of technology are (and had a big giggle when we discovered that Mr. Callahan is, in fact, not a piece of technology) and we brainstormed the different kinds of expected behaviors around using technology. Students then sketched their ideas for their iBook page.

Second Grade

This was our last week of reading folktales from around the world in support of the Country/Culture project. We read Toads and Diamonds (France) and Once a Mouse . . . (India).


Third Grade

This was our last week making timelines on the RWT Timeline app for their Massachusetts biography project. In Mrs. Cunha’s class, we showed students how to find images using the Research tool built right into Google Drive which automatically adds the citation information into your document.

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Fourth Grade

Students continued to work on their Book Creator project of taking some of their writing, adding illustrations, and turning it into an iBook. Mrs. Visocchi’s class continued to find copyright friendly images using Google Image Search and citing their images for their National Parks project.

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In addition . . .

The LTC hosted Ms. Sorensen from Highlander Charter School in Rhode Island for a day so she could learn about how we use technology in the classroom here at Pine Glen.

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We continued to help second graders finish up their research for the Country/Culture persuasive writing project.

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The new 2014 ALA Youth Media Awards were announced this week . . . more on that later!

Mr. Callahan moderated a panel at the Assistive Technology Industry Association‘s annual conference.

LTC Flashback January 21–24



In preparation for the announcement of the new 2014 Youth Media Awards on Monday, January 27, we talked about the Geisel Award and Mo Willems (will he win another?!?) We read First the Egg by Laura Vaccaro Seeger and Not a Box by Antoinette Portis, we watched a video of Mo Willems introducing us to his new Cat the Cat series, then we read Time to Sleep, Sheep the Sheep!

First Grade

We studied the Geisel Award (see above) and read Chicken Said, Cluck! by Judyann Ackerman Grant and Hello, Bumblebee Bat by Darrin Lunde. Then we had a great discussion about whether they were fiction or nonfiction. My favorite response? . .  “Hello, Bumblebee Bat is fiction because bats don’t talk.”–I love it when students show you that they are really thinking 🙂

Second Grade

We continued our study of world folktales because it connects with the country/culture informative writing research project that they have begun in Social Studies (more on that later). We read Tony’s Bread (Italy) by Tomie dePaola and So Say the Little Monkeys (Brazil) by Nancy Van Laan. We continued to think about what a folktale can tell us about a country’s culture.

Third Grade

Third Graders are hard at work on their Massachusetts biography projects. In Mrs. Doherty’s class, students learned how to use the research tool in Google Drive to add cited pictures to a page that they printed for classroom work. In Mrs. Cunha’s and Mrs. Lynch’s classes, students were introduced to a great new app, RWT Timeline by ReadWriteThink. It’s a super-fast and easy way to create timelines that include quick bits of information and pictures. In fact, we are loving all the new apps from ReadWriteThink

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Fourth Grade

Students in the fourth grade are learning how to create books in Book Creator. Mrs. Finn’s and Ms. Hayes’ class continued their work on transforming their writing into illustrated eBooks. Mrs. Visocchi’s class, fresh off of researching National Parks, started finding Creative Commons pictures that will go into their National Parks informational eBooks. Photo 582

Fifth Grade

Ms. Marcus’s class began a new challenge: Create a video book review that looks professional and effectively persuades someone else to read the book. We watched an exemplar video for the book Small as an Elephant found by Fox Hill Librarian, Mr. Murphy. Next, we created a criteria list of video elements that we thought made that video effectively persuasive and look professional. Then, students chose a book for their challenge and began planning the project using a Project Timeline. We are looking forward to creating these videos and sharing them with Mr. Murphy and students at Fox Hill.

In addition…

We posted about the Massachusetts PARCC Trial and Kindergarten Storybird Stories.

We started research lessons about nonfiction text features, note taking strategies, and using Britannica online with the second grade for the Country/Culture project (more on that later).

iReady testing continued in the Computer Lab.

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