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August 1, 2014

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South Carolina and Oklahoma Ditch Common Core

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South Carolina recently joined Indiana and Oklahoma as one of the three states that adopted Common Core State Standards—only to repeal them.

How Wordless Picture Books Empower Children | SLJ Day of Dialog 2014

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Wordless picture books allow children to project their own imaginations upon a story and “own it,” as author/illustrator Bob Staake, along with Aaron Becker, Raul Colón, and Molly Idle discussed during a lively panel at School Library Journal’s 2014 Day of Dialog.

James Herriot’s ‘All Creatures Great and Small’: Complimentary Common Core Aligned Teacher’s Edition | Sponsored Content

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Since All Creatures Great & Small was first published 25 years ago, readers have been delighted with the storytelling genius of James Herriot, the Yorkshire veterinarian whose fascinating vignettes brim with the wonder of life, animal and human. And now there are free Common Core correlations available for use in your classrooms.

Be a Player! Ten Tips for Building Your Library’s Toy Collection

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Early childhood specialist at the Brooklyn Public Library Rachel G. Payne provides a top ten list for librarians looking to develop their toy collection.

New York High School Goes Entirely Digital

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This year, New York’s Archbishop Stepinac High School saw its entire textbook collection transition to a digital library.

Classics are Cool, But… | Summer Reading for Grades 9-12

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Entice your students with a summer reading list of high-interest titles that are both literary and potential crowd pleasers. Evangelicals, mermaids, bullies, man-eating insects, robots, and cheerleaders abound in this selection that’s guaranteed to garner their attention.

Creep around Graveyards, Search for Spies | Summer Reading for Grades 4-8

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Summer is a time for exploration and discovery, for ruminating on history and losing oneself in adventures. This list of titles will travel well, whether it’s to a sunny spot in the backyard, to the beach, or to a destination miles away.

Invitations to Imagination | Summer Reading for K-3

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Summer ushers in a time of unstructured play, when children can explore their surroundings and connect to the outside world through their imaginations. Here is a selection of books that provide launch points for children to do just that.

The Bug Rescuer | A Conversation with Sarah Albee

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What did mosquitoes have to do with the Louisiana Purchase? Lice with the Irish potato famine? And what mysterious disease plagued the Philistines? As she promises in her introduction, Sarah Albee answers all these questions in glorious and “disgusting” detail in ‘Bugged.’

Traveling the World Through Picture Books

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Whether describing a Brazilian boy whose dreams shine as bright as the stars, a youngster’s first rollicking ride on a matatu in Kenya, or a Jamaican girl’s satisfaction at mastering a difficult task, the titles offer glimpses at particular places and lifestyles while touching upon themes that will resonate with children everywhere.

Brooklyn Teachers for English Language Learners Protest Against Common Core

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At the International High School in Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights (IHSPH), 95 percent of its students are classified as English Language Learners. On May 1, IHSPH teachers protested on the school’s steps to announce that 30 teachers and staff at IHSPH have refused to administer the Common Core’s English Language Arts Performance Assessment exam to their students.

Curveballs, Cooking, and a ‘Cosmobiography’ | Nonfiction Notes, May 2014

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This month’s selections include titles that will satisfy readers with passions from music to sports and history to cooking. They’ll also make great titles to add to your summer reading lists.

Our Ecological Footprint | Inquiry and Integration Across the Curriculum

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Exploring the impact of human activity on the environment provides high school students with an opportunity to understand ecological issues from the inside out. By conducting hands-on research, teens have the opportunity to interact with their surrounding environment, collect evidence, and analyze results—and the implications for their community.

‘The Global Education Toolkit’ | Professional Shelf

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The ‘Global Education Toolkit for Elementary Learners’ offers a wealth of practical ideas, suggestions for activities, and resources guaranteed to encourage and energize meaningful learning about the world.

One Story That Should Change How We Teach History | Consider the Source

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A lively conversation with a “sparkling” group of seventh grade students and their teachers, and Randy J. Sparks’s latest book has led the author to a radical conclusion.

School Librarian Talks to Students About ‘Whitewashing’ Children’s Book Covers

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Bank Street School librarian Allie Bruce found herself facing a complicated question from a sixth grader about the lack of minorities on YA book covers, starting with Julia Alvarez’s Return to Sender. The question led Bruce on a year-long lesson on diversity in children’s literature with a sixth grade class and—some surprising results.

Everyday Diversity: A Teacher Librarian Offers Practical Tips to Make a Difference

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Wisconsin teacher librarian Crystal Brunelle has long prioritized advocating diverse children’s literature in school and libraries, but only in the last few years has she figured out a way to put her beliefs into everyday practice—which she offers in four handy tips.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

LGBTQ & You: How to Support Your Students

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School librarians can provide pivotal support for LGBTQ teens by just being there.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

OpenEd: an umbrella OER search and LMS

OpenEd: an umbrella OER search and LMS

OpenEd, a free, open source site now boasts more than a million Common Core videos, games, assessments and sources.

I Heard It Through the Grapevine | Consider the Source

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“There is no longer one Common Core approach, or need, or form of professional development. ” That’s one reason why the relaunch of the five-headed ‘Uncommon Corps’ blog makes sense.