July 23, 2016

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Lauren Barack

About Lauren Barack

School Library Journal contributing editor Lauren Barack writes about the connection between media and education, business, and technology. A recipient of the Loeb Award for online journalism, she can be found at www.laurenbarack.com.

Montana School Librarians Fight to Keep Database Subscription

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A cadre of school librarians has pushed back against the cancellation of EBSCO database subscriptions that have been used statewide for more than 20 years.

Protests Grow Against Proposed Mexican American Textbook in Texas

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The public school text “Mexican American Heritage” is being called “the epitome of revisionist history.”

How Conferences Could Be Better

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Attendees describe how they’d like ALA and other big conferences to evolve—and why smaller and virtual gatherings can be fine alternatives.

New York DOE Green Lights Amazon eBook Deal

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That new book smell may soon be a thing of the past for New York City’s schoolchildren. A $30 million contract will reshape the way ebooks are used in the nation’s largest school system.

School Libraries Host Events to Welcome ELL Students and Families

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Read-and-greet evening programs and home visits with culturally relevant books are some of the efforts librarians are making to bring families of English Language Learners into the school community.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

“Looking for Alaska” Stays in Curriculum in Lebanon, KY

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The controversial teen novel by John Green came under heavy fire in one high school—but in a victory for “freedom to read,” the merits of its use prevailed.

National Readathon Day 2016: Ice Cream, Grab Bags, and, of Course, Books

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The idea behind National Readathon Day, co-hosted by ALA and Penguin Random House, is to celebrate the delights of falling into a story. Any proceeds will support ALA’s Every Child Ready to Read initiative.

Florida Lawmaker Suggests Students Be Allowed to Swap Foreign Language for Coding

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As emphasis on STEM grows, many legislatures want to push these classes in K-12 programs, as has been done in New Mexico and Kentucky, among other states.

School Library Budgets Rise 20%, Yet Challenges Remain | Spending Survey 2016

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On average, budgets climbed nearly 20 percent in 2015–16 to $8,315. Meanwhile, school librarians report a lack of needed funds to serve special needs children and English language learners. And OER use is up, as is the demand for nonfiction.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Teens Teach Computer Science at a CA Library

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In Cupertino, young adults teach computer science to peers and run an all-night hackathon at the library.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Getting ELL Students College-Ready Challenges School Librarians

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Educators want to help all students learn English quickly so they don’t fall behind. But at the high school level, when grades will be part of college applications, this process takes on new urgency.

Tech Tips to Encourage Reluctant Readers

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From street lit resources to free, web-based libraries, digital tools to spark a love of reading and other tips from three experts.

Many Colleges Are Ignoring the SAT. Does Prep Still Matter?

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As students prepare to take the new SAT test on March 5, debates about the rationale for student testing continue—while librarians still want to help students prepare.

Microsoft Purchase of MinecraftEdu Leaves Educators Leery of Change

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With Microsoft’s acquisition of MinecraftEdu, the software giant released details about its own educational version: Minecraft Education Edition. And the questions started flying.

Getting Schools Revved Up About Robotics

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Expert panelists from our recent webcast share advice on how—and why—to dive into robotics with your students.

Blended Learning Model Essential for College Prep, Say Educators | College Ready

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K-12 schools are integrating digital tools and skills to better ready their students for the next phase of their education.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

To Support Teen Parents, Libraries Build Trust and Unique Programs

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Public libraries reach out to teenage parents and their children by offering specialized services ranging from tips on reading with babies to free car seats.

Full Steam Ahead for Sixth Grader Gathering Books with Black Girl Protagonists

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Tired of reading assigned books about “white boys and dogs,” 11-year-old Marley Dias decided to collect 1,000 books with protagonists who are black girls and send them to Jamaica. The hashtag #1000BlackGirlBooks has spread the word and spurred donations.

Digital Visual Dictionary Bridges Language Gap for Refugees

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In Germany, a new tool is being used to ease the adjustment for the throngs of new immigrants coming from the Middle East, especially children.

“When I Was The Greatest” Book Cover Provokes Concern From Brooklyn Parents

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Despite complaints from a contingent of parents about a photo of a gun on the cover, the New York City Department of Education has no plans to remove Jason Reynolds’s YA novel from lists of suggested reading material for seventh and eighth graders.