Lesson: Can You Say Peace?

Full of colourful bold illustrations and a great message Can You Say Peace? by Karen Katz introduces kids to the concept living in harmony lead by the International Day of Peace United Nations initiative.

Can You Say Peace?

Karen Katz

Objective (s):
Social Studies (International Day of Peace), Discussion, Critical Thinking

Students ages 7-9 (Standard 1 – 3) will be introduced to the International Day of Peace. Through class discussion, students will share their ideas of what Peace means to them in their class, home, community, country and the world. These ideas will be shared in order to create a peace banner.

Prior Competencies:

– Rectangular or triangular pieces of paper
– Colour pencils, crayons, markers
– Twine
– Glitter and other decorations (optional)

The Session Outline:
SMLS: Discuss what peace means and why there is a day dedicated to it.
SMLS: writes the words for peace mentioned in the book on a chalk/dry erasel board
SLMS: Prompts: “why is there a word for peace in different languages?’ “even though the languages are different does the word peace mean the same thing?”

[After the story]

SLMS: create class discussion on why peace can be promoted in school, home, the country, the world

STUDENTS: students, using these ideas will draw images they believe to be peaceful and write a way to create peace in their school, community etc. They may include a word that means peace from the list on the board.

SLMS/STUDENTS: attach the pieces of paper to create a banner to be hung in the class or library


Lesson: The Twits

Banding together for the greater good, this chapter of Roald Dhal’s The Twits displays teamwork in a wacky, laugh out loud, way. Together Muggle-Wump and friends ensure the twists get their just desserts, and it isn’t bird pie.

The Twits: Muggle-Wump Has a Idea (Chapter 22)

Roald Dahl

Objective (s):
Using an Encyclopedia, Teamwork, Public Speaking.

Students ages 8-12 (Standard 2 – 5) will be introduced to using printed resources, namely an encyclopedia, to locate information on a selection of birds (appearance, habitat, food-source,etc) in order to present their findings to their peers.

Prior Competencies:
Students should have been introduced to the concept of alphabetical searching (eg: with dictionaries) with their teacher.

– Slips of paper with one bird types written on each (eg: Woodpecker, Owl, Hummingbird, Parrot, etc)
– Writing paper and pencils
– Encyclopedias for corresponding birds

The Session Outline:
SMLS: ask students about what teamwork means and how they work as a team in their daily lives
SLMS: introduces the story, stressing that the birds and Muggle-Wump the monkey are working as a team to achieve their goal

[After the story]: divide class into teams. Each team selects a bird from a hat.

SLMS: gives students corresponding encyclopedia and explains the concept of searching (reference/compare to dictionary search)

STUDENTS: students, in a team delegate the tasks of (1. reader, 2. notetaker, 3. proof reader and 4. presenter)
STUDENTS: Present their findings to the class

Aims of The Library

Recently for my Instructional Design course we were asked to evaluate the role of the School Library Media Specialist. Working on my essay during my lunch often garners the questions from my co-workers as to what i was up to. As I explained to them about the essay’s topic I realized that there are still a lot of misconceptions as to what librarians do and what libraries are for.
On my little island of Trinidad and Tobago, libraries are seen as ‘a quiet place to read’. Though this is true, school libraries especially, are tasked with a few things beyond that (I use the word ‘few’ sarcastically). School Library Media Specialists are Instructional Partners, Teachers, Information Experts and, yes, Reading Advocates.
This display serves to educate both Teacher and Student on to what a modern library media center does and the ways they can benefit from its resources

The Giving Tree

….suddenly, I jumped out of my bed, grabbed my notebook, drew a tree and some random rectangles..

Sometimes ideas hit me at strange hours. My brain is always conjuring up thing to do in the library; activities to do, books to convince admin to buy but mostly displays to make.
The Giving tree by Shel Silverstein is one of those books that the kids have asked me to read over and over and OVER again (along with the ‘Pigeon’ books by Mo Willems but that’s another post). They love that tree as the little boy did and contrary to my initial thoughts, understand the analogy within the story. After having a parent of a standard two aged child tell me their kids referred to them as a ‘Giving Tree’ the idea for this school activity tackled my brain at 2 am.

Kids and Genres

“necessity is the mother of invention”

“..I’m looking for a book with, like, lots of…you know…things happening. fun things. And magic!”.

I nodded my head. I definitely know what you mean.

” you like fantasy book?”, I said.
He looked confused.
And that’s when it hit me; this kid had no idea what i was talking about.

Its through moments like these I learn more about my patrons and their needs. Kids often know exactly what they’re looking for but just not quite how to say it. Later that day I created this quick genre breakdown and explained it to the students and my student helpers as they came in.

[Few Weeks Later]
“..I’m looking for a book with douens and papa-bois and thing…I mean, you have any Trinidad folklore books?”