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SD Department of Education April 2015  


Librarian wants students to be lifelong learners, readers and library lovers

This month, we feature Laura Allard, the librarian at Memorial Middle School in Sioux Falls. The South Dakota State Library recognizes this library as an Exemplary 21st Century School Library.

How long have you been a school librarian?
I’ve been a librarian since 1997 and have worked in school libraries for seven years.

Why did you decide to become a school librarian?
I’ve known I wanted to be a librarian since I was 16. I first thought of being a school librarian when I was getting my master’s in library science. I love young adult literature, and one of my favorite parts of working at a public library was helping kids and teens find books and helping them with research projects.

What makes your school’s library an Exemplary 21st Century School Library?
I think what is foundational to Memorial gaining the Exemplary status is that our library has a lot of support from teachers and administrators.

(For more information on the 21st Century School Library program, go to http://library.sd.gov/LIB/SLC/21stCentAward.aspx#.VSab9_A0OBw.)

What kind of programming do you offer?
On an ongoing basis, we have grade-level lunch book clubs. We have also hosted a special coding class for Teen Tech Week, author Skype sessions, a winter reading festival, a spring book swap and The Reading Olympics.

Do you have special programming over the summer?
Our library is open during the summer, which is a great way for our students to enjoy the library informally and have a familiar source for reading materials during the long summer months. We especially get a lot of incoming sixth graders, which is a great way for them to feel comfortable in the building, and it’s great for me because I get to meet them first!

How are today’s school libraries different from when you were in school?
I don’t even remember my junior high library. Free reading was not emphasized in school as much when I was in junior high. One thing I hope I accomplish with the students at Memorial is that they have positive memories of the library, which hopefully translates into their being lifelong learners, readers and library lovers!

What books are popular right now?
Right now it’s all about Minecraft! Our students also love reading the YARP (Young Adult Reading Program) Teen Choice Book Award-nominated books, and of course, series like Michael Vey, Divergent and Maze Runner.

What do you like most about being a librarian?
I love that the fundamental goal of libraries and librarians is to facilitate learning in their community. This is also the biggest challenge, because a librarian’s purpose is often misunderstood. Many still see us as only “the book people” when libraries and librarians are so much more. The challenge of being a librarian today is changing perceptions.

What do you like about being the librarian at Memorial Middle School?
I love our students, and I love our teachers!

How do you keep learning?
I read the School Library Journal, Teacher Librarian and Knowledge Quest. I follow a lot of Twitter feeds and have set up several Google alerts for topics I am particularly interested in. I am looking forward to summer to catch up on some of my professional reading. I also enjoy taking online classes from the American Library Association and other professional organizations.

Educators needed to serve on CTE standards revision workgroups

The Division of Career & Technical Education invites CTE teachers, school counselors and district administrators to participate in a number of content standards revision workgroups this summer.

Each work group will include approximately 20 members, including secondary Career & Technical Education teachers, postsecondary faculty and industry representatives. Other stakeholders interested in the process are also encouraged to apply.

Workgroups will meet in-person during the month of June at various locations across the state. Additional meetings may be held online as needed later in the summer, following the in-person sessions.

Participants will be compensated for their time. Meals, mileage and lodging will also be reimbursed at state rates.

The deadline to apply for these work groups is April 24. Applicants will be notified by the South Dakota Department of Education in early May if they have been selected to participate.

Click on the links below to apply to participate in one or more of the workgroups.

Contact Erin Larsen, South Dakota Department of Education, at (605) 773-2533 or Erin.Larsen@state.sd.us with questions.

Career Cluster Meeting Dates Location Workgroup Application
All CTE Foundational Courses June 22-25 Pierre http://bit.ly/1NExko7
Architecture & Construction June 1-5 Mitchell http://bit.ly/1xvYHg7
Education & Training June 15-19 Brookings http://bit.ly/1xTBzIX
Information Technology June 15-19 Sioux Falls http://bit.ly/1BMr4mR
Law, Public Safety,
Corrections & Security
June 22-25 Rapid City http://bit.ly/1GJ8KR9
STEM June 22-26 Watertown http://bit.ly/1ywxHbx

Governor makes initial appointments to Blue Ribbon Task Force

Gov. Dennis Daugaard has announced initial appointments to the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Teachers and Students. The task force, announced by the Governor and legislative leaders in February, will reevaluate the current funding formula and make recommendations to the 2016 State Legislature for reform.

Read more at http://news.sd.gov/newsitem.aspx?id=17379.

Native American Student Achievement Advisory Council members announced

Gov. Dennis Daugaard has announced members of the Native American Student Achievement Advisory Council. The council will work to identify strategies for improving achievement and graduation rates among South Dakota’s Native American students and report its findings to the Legislature and the Governor by Dec. 1.

Read more at http://news.sd.gov/newsitem.aspx?id=17526.

April is School Library Month

• Head west for STEM learning at School Library Boot Camp 2015

The fourth annual School Library Boot Camp will be held July 19-22 at Black Hills State University in Spearfish. All are welcome: classroom teachers, paraprofessionals, school librarians, specialists and administrators. Bring along a colleague to partner on a project to co-teach in the 2015-16 school year.

Boot Camp instructors will present on the theme, "STEM in the 21st Century School Library." Participants will explore genius hour, digital resources and curating tools, reading and researching like a scientist, participate in a field trip to the Sanford Underground Research Facility, and more.

Registration deadline is June 5. Boot Camp is a Black Hills State University course. Students must register for two credits at either the undergraduate or graduate level. Class time will include evening hours.

The School Library Summit, co-hosted by State Librarian Daria Bossman and South Dakota Library Association Past President Scott Ahola, will conclude the course on July 22.

Please pre-register at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/HZ3MLCH. Information on credits, housing and meals will be sent to you once pre-registration is complete.

Please contact South Dakota State Library Continuing Education Coordinator Kathleen Slocum at 1-800-423-6665 or Kathleen.Slocum@state.sd.us with questions.

• Vermillion and Yankton students have fun with Read! SD initiative

Read more at http://library.sd.gov/forlibrarians/enewsletter/2015/feb/2015-02i.asp

Shave or Save:
Principal and staff put mustaches on the line

Staff and students at Stewart Elementary in Yankton had a “mustache-ulous” time reading during third quarter. Using the Read! SD 20 Minutes – 24/7 pledge, the school geared up for spring assessments with a “Shave or Save” competition. Students logged how many minutes they read, and at the end of the quarter, readers’ votes determined if Principal Jerome Klimisch’s mustache would be shaved or saved. Four other male employees ultimately decided to put their facial hair on the line, too.

“We love to have fun and challenge our students, but it is no coincidence that we are ramping up the reading activities during the third quarter,” said school librarian Kathleen Bergeson. “The testing window is right around the corner. This is the last big effort, and we are making it fun.”

Students were recognized for the minutes they read, and anyone could be a top reader by reading more than 20 minutes a day.

“It is so exciting to see how the kids have embraced this challenge! A parent told me her daughter wanted to race home from dance practice so she could get her reading time in,” Klimisch said.

Events were held throughout the quarter to encourage students. On Fridays, reading calendars of students who had read more than 20 minutes a day were placed in a drawing. One top reader from each grade was selected to have their picture taken with Mr. Klimisch and the other participants while sporting their own mustache.

Other activities included the following:

• During the kick-off assembly, Principal Klimisch told his students he was born with his mustache. Then throughout the quarter, he visited classrooms to read Mustache Baby by Bridget Heos.

• All students and staff participated in school-wide Mustache D.E.A.R. (Drop Everything and Read) times.

• A friend of the school made t-shirts for adult participants with a READ/mustache logo.

• A display outside the school office challenged students and staff to match names to staff baby pictures with mustaches added.

• Two classes with the highest participation enjoyed a “stache bash,” with milk and mustache cookies and straws, plus mustache games and special guests (the mustache guys).

• The school held a family read-in to celebrate Read Across America.

This isn’t the first time Klimisch and Bergeson have done daring things to encourage students to read. Previously, students read enough books to make a bookworm go around the school, so Klimisch had to eat worms. And when Bergeson asked students to “Stick with Reading,” they earned enough duct tape to stick her to a wall.

The “Shave or Save” challenge culminated at an assembly. Students logged a total of 134,080 minutes of reading. The final vote was 1,608 to 337, in favor of a shave.

During the assembly, the mustaches went, but a couple lightning bolt and Wolverine-style sideburns remained. To conclude the assembly, an additional challenge was presented to students to decide the ultimate fate of Klimisch’s mustache. Students who continued to read through Easter break could vote to “Let it Grow or Let it Go.” Readers’ votes will determine if Klimisch grows his mustache back or keeps it off.

Visit www.ReadSD.com for more information and to access resources for developing your own school-wide reading challenge. Contact Kathleen Bergeson at KBergeson@ysd.k12.sd.us for more information on Shave or Save.

Students and families encouraged to “Go Fourth” this summer

South Dakota State Parks, a division of Game, Fish and Parks, is partnering with the South Dakota Departments of Health and Education to put on the “Go Fourth” program. This project aims to get fourth graders and their families outside and active this summer, with the overall aim of improving the health of South Dakota youth and families.

The project will distribute one-day entrance licenses to every fourth grader in the state (approximately 11,500 licenses). The license extends to the family of the student and can be used any day between distribution and Dec. 31, 2015. If a family chooses to purchase an annual pass, the license can be turned in for a discount off the purchase. Families will be asked to fill out a brief survey for follow-up as well as to measure success of the program.

The goal of the project is encouraging kids and families to develop good habits, try new activities and enjoy nature. Although the license can be used any day, participants will be encouraged to utilize them to attend in-park events, such as “Becoming an Outdoor Family,” and other educational programs.

Schools should receive the licenses and information on the project during the week of May 4 and are encouraged to distribute them upon receipt.

South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks and the departments of health and education appreciate your assistance with this special project!

Go to http://gfp.sd.gov/outdoor-learning/go-fourth.aspx for more information, or call Game, Fish and Parks at (605) 773-3391.

Still time to schedule end-of-year field trips to Cultural Heritage Center

Teachers of all grades are encouraged to bring their students to the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre to experience South Dakota history.

The South Dakota Experience galleries tell the story of the state from American Indian life before the arrival of Europeans in the 1700s through the end of the 20th Century. Students can walk through a tipi, “ride” a train and “milk” a cow, among other activities.

The Hogen Gallery features changing exhibits. Currently, this gallery features “Play Ball! The National Pastime in South Dakota,” an exhibit covering the history of baseball in the state.

Museum hours are 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. CDT, Monday-Friday. There is no cost for tours, which can either be guided or self-guided. For more information, visit www.history.sd.gov/museum. To schedule a tour, email Jeff Mammenga, South Dakota State Historical Society, at Jeff.Mammenga@state.sd.us or call (605) 773-6000.

Upcoming Events

For a complete listing of events, go to http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/.

TIE Conference
April 19-21, Rapid City

The 29th Annual TIE Conference will be held at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. It’s the largest event in the region focused on teaching materials, instructional practices, and technology applications for school administrators, teachers, technology coordinators, librarians and media specialists.

The event features breakout sessions, in-depth workshops, nationally recognized keynote speakers, an opportunity for graduate credit and a large exhibit hall.

For more information or to register, go to www.conference.tie.net.

Board of Education meeting
May 18, Aberdeen

The South Dakota Board of Education will hold its regularly scheduled meeting in Aberdeen. Public hearings will be held related to content standards adoption in the areas of science, social studies, fine arts and K-12 educational technology. An agenda will be posted at http://boardsandcommissions.sd.gov/Template.aspx?id=32 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

South Dakota State Historical Society 2015 History Conference
Prairie to Pines: People and Their Environment in South Dakota

May 29-30, Pierre

The environment is more than a backdrop. Our interactions with plants, animals, soil, water and air have helped shape our state's history. At this year’s conference, speakers will be providing insights into the impact our forefathers had on transforming the land and communities--from the farms and industry East River, to the ranches, mines and timber operations West River. This is a unique opportunity for historians, teachers, students and the general public to learn more about the unique environment of our state in a historical context.

Teachers can receive continuing education contact hours for attending. The cost for registration and continuing education contact hours is $135 if registered by May 8, with a reduced cost of $125 for members of the South Dakota State Historical Society.

For more information and to register, go to http://history.sd.gov/aboutus/HistoryConference/PrairieToPines/default.aspx.

Questions? Contact Jeff Mammenga, South Dakota State Historical Society, at (605) 773-6000 or jeff.mammenga@state.sd.us.

Transition Institute
June 1-2, Pierre

Transition Institute provides information on evidence-based strategies to prepare students with disabilities to meet their postsecondary goals. The summer institute will focus on identifying factors and predictors that prepare youth in transition for employment. Information provided in this training will be relevant to new and experienced high school teachers. Graduate credit will be available.

To register, go to https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/public/calendar.

Advanced Data Use Skills for Educators
June 1-July 15, online

Advanced Data Use Skills for Educators, a new online course available this summer, will build upon skills taught in the prerequisite course, Fundamentals of Using Data for Educators. Participants will apply fundamental skills to an individual project using data.

Course requirements include readings, participation in online discussions and completion of a data project, with the goal of using data to answer important questions to drive positive change in a district, school or classroom.

The course is scheduled for June 1-July 15, with the data project due July 15. Participation is free. Two credits are available through the University of South Dakota for $40/credit.

Register at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com. Search by course title. For those wishing to receive credit, there will be an additional link on this website where participants can register with USD.

2015 Summer Education Conference: Multi-Tiered System of Supports
June 3-4, Pierre

This conference is open to all schools, with a reduced registration rate available for educators from MTSS schools. Graduate credit is available.

The first day of the conference will focus on teaching students to think critically about text. School-wide Positive Behavior Supports will be the main topic of day two. Keynote speakers will be Jill Jackson and Dr. George Sugai.

For more information and to register, go to http://doe.sd.gov/oess/documents/15ConfMTS.pdf.

Questions? Contact Becky Cain, South Dakota Department of Education, at rebecca.cain@state.sd.us or (605) 280-3568.

Save the Date: 2015 Indian Education Summit
Nov. 1-3, Pierre
Details at http://indianeducation.sd.gov/summit.aspx

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