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Several asked for a hit on this topic so I have included the responses
as well as my original message. Thanks so much to all that replied. I
feel so much more prepared now.

Jessica Sowder
Information Specialist
Crestview Elementary
Indianapolis, IN

After my procedures I lecture some more:

I give a tour of the library.  My fiction books are placed according to
grade level, mostly.
We have easy reader, picture book (not graded), 2+, 3+ and fiction

I talk about good books that I have read this summer or just good books
for them.
Since I have been a librarian for 30 years I have a large reservoir to
choose from.
Actually i do this whenever I read a new book.

I also talk about ways to find a good book---one grade only every year.
I used to use the info. from a Judy Freeman book.
Some of the ways are good/bad/ugly.


Merrie Daitch
Anne Hutchinson and waverly Libraries
eastchester, ny

Off the top of my head (and I am at home)
How about 
Kindergarten Rocks
Mouse paint
Mouse count
Kindergarten ABC
Countdown to Kindergarten
The alphabet mystery (I do this about the third or fourth week with
them) and its companion The Alphabet adventure
First Grade
First Grade Stinks
Mrs. Watson wants your teeth
Second Grade
Get Ready for 2nd Grade Amber Brown
Stella Louella and the runaway library book-Ernst
Library Lil
The Library Lion
I don't read with them, I make them practice using the catalog.  We have
a new system this year (We started July 14) so they need to get used to
the different look.
Good luck,
Ruie Chehak, Library Media Specialist
Sallie Jones Elementary School
1230 Narranja Street
Punta Gorda, FL 33950


Stories! There are many great library "stories" out there for all
levels. Last year was my first full-time year in the library. Luckily we
have eleven elementary schools all K-5 and our librarians love to share;
Draw a map of the library, but don't fill it in - have the students fill
it in as they walk quietly around and identify the the sections in the
library; have books out from each section and have groups of students
put them in order: The Library Dragon, The Library Lion, Excuse Me but
That's My Book, Toni Buzzeo's books are great; also there are some songs
out there to teach about libraries - kids love it when you sing with
them... hope this helps some... I haven't started planning for this next
year. I'm hoping to do more projects this year.
Mary Celia
Marysville School District, WA


Dear Jessica,

It was my first year at my school last year, and my first year as
librarian.  (Previously I had been at another school in the same school
system teaching first grade for 10 years). So I was new in the position,
new to the students, new to the staff...

I was very lucky because the past two librarians from that school had
left copies of their lesson plans - so I could see what had been taught
in each grade level before I got there.  And the wonderful librarian I
did my practicum hours with burned me a CD-ROM of her lesson plans as
well.  So, let me flip through my plans and see what I did.

Week 1- Introduced myself to each class as they came in.
KINDERGARTEN is on a staggered enrollment to get them accustomed to
school, so they come around in small groups and meet all the "specials"
teachers.  I shook hands or gave hugs and introduced myself and took
their pictures (so I could try and learn their names quickly).
FIRST - Read "The Library Dragon" along with the story puppet. 
SECOND- Read "The Librarian from the Black Lagoon."
THIRD- Read "Library Lil."
FOURTH & FIFTH - These kids have actually had a different librarian
every year at this school, so they know how to meet someone new.  I
tried to think of a way to get them "hooked" right away and show that I
really did want to know what their interests were, etc. I made a big
display of books that have been made into movies and then chose a few to
discuss how the movie and book were similar and different - Spiderwick,
Prince Caspian, Kit Kittredge, Lemony Snicket...  The kids who had
already finished the books were really eager to point out discrepancies
between the story lines and that got the kids who had only seen the
movies curious.  By the end of the week, nearly every book I had
displayed was checked out and some had waiting lists.

Week 2-
KINDERGARTEN - Read "D.W.'s Library Card" and talked about book care and
library procedures.
FIRST & SECOND - Read "Check It Out!" by Gail Gibbons, then used the
television synched to the computer to demonstrate how to use the online
catalog, and from there how to find them on the shelves.
THIRD/FOURTH/FIFTH - Also did a brief review of the catalog with the
TV/computer, but then used a Powerpoint to go into more detail of how
the library is organized.  

Since the movie tie-ins had been so popular the week before, I made a
new display of "If you liked ..., then you might like..." using
nonfiction books on pirates, mummies, Ancient China, archaeology, etc.
Example: "If you liked Pirates of the Caribbean, then you might enjoy
these books on pirates." I had books related to "The Mummy" movies,
Indiana Jones, Tomb Raider, Pirates of the Caribbean, Journey to the
Center of the Earth.  Then I used those topics as my examples for the
online catalog demo.  Again - every book on display was checked out and
had a waiting list.

As the weeks went by I continued the displays with a different theme
each week - presidents for the September elections, bats and spiders
near Halloween, nutrition and cook books during National School Lunch
Week ...  Whatever I pulled out was always checked out.  The lessons
moved on to different topics and skills they needed or that the teachers
requested, but I think taking the time those first few weeks to show
that I did know a little about life outside the library (like the
popular movies of the summer) helped them see me as someone that might
be able to recommend things they would like.

The teachers appreciated that I tied in what I was doing to what was
going on in their classrooms.  When it was time for the Science Fair - I
went over how to research a topic and how to make a bibliography list.
When it was time for dress-up book reports, I made sure I had plenty of
biographies to choose from and also nonfiction books that had
illustrations of the clothing of different time periods, so the kids
could get an idea of what to wear.  When second grade did their habitat
reports I  showed the kids how to use the table of contents and index to
find where the plants and animals of the area were listed.  Probably the
same things you did.  :-)

Suzanne Costner
School Library Media Specialist
Fairview Elementary School
Maryville, TN


Book care or and library rules, I use Mr Wiggles and What happened to
Marions book. Library dragon for intro to rules. There are plenty of
great books to choose from.

Colette D. Eason, Librarian
Marsalis ES
5640 S. Marsalis Ave.
Dallas, TX 75241
Box 317, TEA #183
Dallas ISD



Here are some books that are fun to use during the first library lesson:
The Bee Tree--Patricia Polacco A great story about the value of reading.
I end this story by giving everyone a toothpick dipped in honey, or a
piece of honeycomb.
Miss Smith's Incredible Storybook--Michael Garland. Reading makes you
part of a new world. This is always a favorite. I never have enough
copies available for check-out after the reading. 
How I Spent My Summer Vacation--Mark Teague It has a surprise at the
end. In the middle of the book ask, do you believe Wallace is telling
the truth? Then ask again at the end of the story.
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers--Mordecai Gerstein A good lead in
to the concept of doing your best, becoming what you want to be.
Beatrice's Goat--Page McBrier.  The importance of school and doing your
best in school.
Janet Sharp
Media Specialist
Jamestown Elementary
Hephzibah, GA 30815


I always begin the year with books about the library.  I would use books
like the The Library Dragon, Library Lil etc and that way I could
incorporate lessons on book care etc with literature.  

Joanne Walsh
Teacher Librarian


check the archives using orientation..........beginning of the
year......first month....library orientation.......those type subjects.
even book titles. LOADSS there.


I like to start withbooks that have talking points on them such as I
took My Frog to the Library, the Library Dragon, IQ Goes to the Library,
Beverly Billingsly Borrows a Book. There are many titles, check your
collection. With the older kids, I play a game to review. I call it the
sponge game. I draw a sponge bob face on a large sponge, dampen it, and
draw numbers on the chalk board. Each table groupis asked a question,
and if correct they throw the sponge at the board. I have lots of
behavior rules incorporated, and I'll send them if you think you might
try it. Good luck Maria


One of my favorite back to school stories that I use with Kinder/First
is I Took My Frog to the Library by Eric Kimmel.  I use puppets and hold
up as I recite each page. 
I took my frog to the library....jumped on circulation desk.
Hen................laid egg next to card catalog
Have a great beginning.  I am at a year-round school and today was our
kids' first day back.  Very few crying "parents".
Felice Feldman
Castle Hills Elementary
San Antonio, TX


The Librarian From the Black Lagoon
Our Librarian Won't Tell Us Anything
Stella Luella's Runaway Book
Library Dragon

are all good read alouds for the first days of classes
I also go over my expectations and procedures (Harry Wong's advice for
the first day) and take new pics for my circ system ( I load my own so I
don't have to wait for the CD of student pictures we get in November )


-----Original Message-----
From: School Library Media & Network Communications
[mailto:LM_NET@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU] On Behalf Of Sowder, Jessica
Sent: Wednesday, July 22, 2009 10:59 AM
Subject: How Should I Start?

Expert Media Specialists,

     I'm am in an elementary school with grades 1-5. I started in the
library at the end of last year so this will be my first full year in
the media center. I was wondering what books or lessons you start the
year with. Of course I'll need to go over procedures and expectations,
but I don't want to lecture the whole class time.  How should I start?

Jessica Sowder
Information Specialist
Crestview Elementary
Indianapolis, IN

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