Solving Library Problems with Design Thinking: 3D Printing Braille Signage

  Each year I push 4th grade students to use the design thinking process to create a lasting and meaningful contribution to their library. In past years, we’ve used graphic design to create new signage that’s more accessible to young readers, and interviewed kindergarteners to create systems to help them find the books that they […]

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Fitz’s Faves Jr: H’s review of Penguin Problems, by Jory John

Penguin Problems, by Jory John I loved the book Penguin Problems because it was so funny. It was about a grumpy penguin who complains about everything, and then is visited by a walrus who tell shim basically to be grateful for what he has, and the penguin does then realize there is a lot to […]

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Family Night: Library Programming to Celebrate our Unique and Wonderful Community

Last week, almost 200 members of our school community gathered to celebrate one very special thing: family! Families come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and varieties, and this last event in the ’18-’19 Family Fest series was the perfect reason to come together and celebrate them all! I designed this program to highlight the diverse, unique, […]

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The Bennett’s Village Penny Wars have begun!

    My 7th and 8th grade Quest group this semester is working on answering the question: What can we do to help level the playing field for kids in Charlottesville, so that every child has a chance to learn and play? These fundraisers for Bennett’s Village are one of their many current ongoing projects […]

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Building our Little Free Libraries

  From the first pencil sketch design to drilling today’s final screw, this Leveling the Playing Field Quest team has had little Charlottesville readers and Bennett’s Village on their minds and in their hearts. With help from Mr. Browning, our sketches and plans became real pieces and we worked together to assemble them. Our Little […]

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We failed. Now what?: 10 Steps for Discussing Failure with Kids

Student-led, inquiry based, project based… these learning terms are big in the education world, and the pressure for students to create meaningful, big, showy products is intense. But student-led and project based learning isn’t all productive work periods and beautiful results. Sometimes, the most meaningful and memorable thing that students can do is fail. When […]

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I’m Sad, by Michael Ian Black and Debbie Ridpath Ohi

“I’m sad. Will I always feel like this?” Michael Ian Black and Debbie Ridpath Ohi must be mind readers, because the world needed this book. Everyone feels sad sometimes, but we don’t all have the tools to understand, communicate, and process those feelings in a healthy way. I’m Sad normalizes sad feelings – and reminds […]

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Fitz’s Faves Jr: R’s review of Happy Pig Day, by Mo Willems

Happy Pig Day, by Mo Willems It teaches you a great lesson. The lesson is that even if you don’t look the same you should still be a part of the thing you want to be a part of. I think Piggy shows a lot of excitement at the beginning and I love the illustrations. […]

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Coming Soon: Family Night

Mark your calendars – Family Night is NEXT TUESDAY! I am so excited to celebrate all of the unique and wonderful families in our school community. This book club with a twist requires no preparatory reading – all you need to do is grab your fam and join the party. The amazing Jesús Pino Agular, from Jesus […]

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Quest: How can we make our spaces more inclusive and welcoming for all?

What is an inclusive playground, and why does it matter? Our Quest has been working to understand and break down barriers that children in Charlottesville face that keep them from being able to read and play. Last month, we were lucky enough to meet Kara with Bennett’s Village, who taught us so much about Bennett, […]

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