Thursday, September 22, 2016

Open House, EasyBib, Legal Thrillers, Databases, Destiny & More

Cross posted from and coauthored by Jackie Whiting.

We were very excited to meet so many parents at Open House. Thanks to all the parents who shared favorite books with us. You are all part of a new display in the MakerSpace called "New Canaan Parents Recommend..." It is hard to resist reading a book that someone heartily endorses!

EasyBib is back! Due to corporate shifts that occurred last year at EasyBib, we had decided to transition to NoodleTools for student citation work. Unfortunately it became apparent in just the first two weeks of school that NoodleTools was not a good fit for us: we were sacrificing too much instructional time in NoodleTools guidance to make it worthwhile. Last week, as research projects ramped up, we needed to make a decision and make it fast. With the release by the Modern Language Association last April of a new citation protocol (MLA 8) it is essential that we maintain a quality and easily accessible service. EasyBib, missing us, was amenable to restoring our relationship and we were able to resume their use. Favorable responses from students abound! We consulted as many people as we could in making this decision, so if you are pleased about it, please thank Garrett who served as the spokesperson for the students during these conversations!

With the familiarity of EasyBib restored, students are engrossed in many different research experiences. Many of the ninth graders are wondering: RU What U Eat? and are getting their first exposure to our databases in pursuit of answers to this essential question. In tenth grade, student sleuths are seeking the murderer of Philip II or preparing to serve in a symposium on Absolutism. In this grade, the students are challenged to extend their skills beyond reporting to deeper research and reflection. Grade ten students will learn to synthesize the information they find to create unique meaning and show their insight. Our juniors, having already experienced the research projects of freshmen and sophomore year, will soon be undertaking the first of their two junior research papers. We are eager to get into classes with them, too!

School-wide there many places students can connect their BYOD devices to projectors for presentation or collaboration purposes. In order to take advantage of this utility students need to bring an HDMI cable with them. Please be sure that the cable adapter matches the device ports. If your student has any questions, anyone in the library and tech services is happy to assist!

Did your student participate in The Big History Read? Through this program, Ms. Goldhawk energized students in ninth and tenth grades to independently read fiction and non-fiction that complimented and extended their history studies. This year, Ms. Goldhawk is teaching  civics and law to upperclassmen so we have worked with her to develop a corollary to TBHR called TBLR (The Big Law Read). We are excited about the expansion to our vibrant collection this venture has inspired.

NCHS's bookshelf: tblr

The Abduction
tagged: nchs-legal-thrillers and tblr
Absolute Power
tagged: nchs-legal-thrillers and tblr
tagged: nchs-legal-thrillers and tblr
After Dark
tagged: nchs-legal-thrillers and tblr

We added two new database suites to our digital collection. Global Newsbank includes three modules - Access World News, Latin American Newspapers, and Foreign Broadcast Information Service. Students will find all three of these resources indispensable for weekly current events reports, as well as assured learning experiences throughout the NCHS curriculum. We also subscribed to a new suite of Gale products for several reasons. First, they organize search results into categories that align well with the NCHS research model, and also because it integrates seamlessly with Google Drive and Google Classroom Google integration.

Destiny, our online catalog has a new interface for students. We think it will simplify searching for materials print or digital materials in our collection. It is important for students to

On Wednesday, October 5th, our Somewhat Virtual Book Club (#swvbc) will gather face-to-face in the high school library at 6PM to meet virtually with students in South Carolina, New Jersey, and California to share thoughts on this month's book, Some Boys by Patty Blount. The author has agreed to join us virtually! Author participation plays an important role in our club. This month, we included the author handle in a twitter post about a #SWVBC member wearing a book-inspired outfit. The author enthusiastically responded. It was a great moment for our NCHS reader!

Our club seeks new members. We meet on the first Wednesday of the month at 6PM in the high school library.

We have a Google Photos account! We linked it to our website, and we hope to add a carousel of library activity pictures to our home page within the next few weeks.

No update would be complete without our bi-weekly Tech Tips; this installment: more on being a Google power searcher!
  • Chrome accounts: Sign into Chrome. It makes it much easier to toggle between school and other Google accounts.
  • Multiple browsers: Have at least two browsers on your computer. It helps troubleshoot when you run into problems navigating websites. 
  • Protect your AirDrop: Make sure your Airdrop is private unless you are sharing. 
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