Gale, part of Cengage Learning, and Library Media Connection magazine today announced the three winners of the TEAMS Award—Teachers and Media Specialists Influencing Student Achievement, a biannual honor recognizing the critical collaboration between teachers and library media specialists in promoting learning. This year’s winners are: Draper Elementary School in Eden, NC; Constable Neil Bruce Middle School in British Columbia, Canada; and Branford High School in Branford, CT.
“This year offered another impressive display of collaborative projects, demonstrated by the substantial increase in applications, as media specialists and educators looked for new ways to incorporate library resources into classroom learning and teach critical thinking skills,” says Marlene Woo-Lun, publisher of Library Media Connection, in Gale’s official announcement. “We are excited to honor the efforts of all of the winners and participants this year.”
The TEAMS Award was created to recognize the critical collaboration between teachers and media specialists in promoting learning and increasing student achievement.
Nominations were evaluated based on:
• Demonstrated collaboration between media specialists and teachers during the school year
• Effective techniques that positively impact student learning and achievement
• Support received from school leadership
• Ability for others to replicate this best practice
“Twenty-first century skills such as information literacy and critical thinking are crucial to the success of today’s students both in the classroom and beyond,” says Nader Qaimari, senior vice president, sales and marketing for Gale, in the announcement. “The collaborative projects we’re honoring with this year’s TEAMS Award, clearly demonstrate and instill these important skills in students around North America.”
Each winning school receives $2,500 in cash, Gale products, a one-year subscription to Library Media Connection, and the Educator’s Professional Bookshelffrom Linworth Publishing/Libraries Unlimited. The winners will also be honored at a reception at the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) conference in Hartford, CT, in November.
The winning projects
At Draper Elementary School, media specialist Bronte Tatum teamed up with fourth-grade teacher Kirsten Reid to develop a research project on endangered animals that provided opportunities to collaborate with the art, physical education, and music departments. The students created a digital book, “We Are Endangered. Can You Help Us?”
At Constable Neil Bruce Middle School, teacher librarian Dayna Hart and seventh-grade social studies teacher Jenn Craig worked together on a project that asked students to create their own civilizations as they simultaneously learned about ancient civilizations in history.
At Branford High School, library media specialist Jessica Mularski and history teacher Jennifer Kordek collaborated on a project that asked students to create an interactive etextbook on the First World War. The textbook will be put on the iBooks market for other students and educators to enjoy.
In addition to the winners noted above, Gale and Library Media Connection also recognized several schools, awarding them Honorable Mentions, for their submissions:
• Sunnyland Elementary School in Bellingham, WA
• Myron J. Francis Elementary School in East Providence, RI
• Centennial Junior High School in Casper, WY
• Driscoll Middle School in San Antonio, TX
• Elkton High School in Elkton, MD
• Liverpool High School Annex in Liverpool, NY