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Lauren Tarshis Visits Clinton School

Lauren Tarshis

This week we were thrilled to have author Lauren Tarshis visit with our third, fourth and fifth graders in the auditorium. Not only did she personalize approximately 75 books for kids, but she connected with both students and teachers in the hour and a half that she stopped by. Through the support of our local bookstore, Words, we made this visit happen.

When I think about what made the visit so special, it had to be her stories of not having the reading “gift.” She explained how she couldn’t finish a book until high school and how she hid her reading concerns. As an adult, she wanted to be a writer and again faced challenges only to have an encounter with J.K. Rowling and understand how even someone as goddess-like as the creator of Harry Potter, can write an unsuccessful novel. Years later, Lauren has become a writer and a successful one at that. She inspires kids to learn about history and we thank her and her encounter with J.K. Rowling.

Mars Patel… Get to Know That Name (and Podcast)

I am hooked… (to the podcast The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel) and cannot wait for season 2.  As a huge fan of podcasts this happens often as I discover a new podcast and just can’t stop talking about it. What makes this show so much more exciting is that it is written for and recorded by kids.  One of my students is even in the cast and I didn’t know it till episode 10!

This middle grade mystery centers around strange happenings at Pruitt Prep and if you give it a chance, it will make you a fan of the spoken word as well.



Support our library

Since 2014, the Clinton Library has been actively using the site Donors Choose to support library projects.  We have had 16 projects funded and I cannot thank the support of the local community enough.  Our newest grants helped bring Makey Makey sets to the library and we are still loving our expanded Makerspace with robots and Osmo Numbers. To see our past projects, please visit our page.


Adam Gidwitz to visit Clinton Elementary

What happens when a librarian goes to the AASL conference and meets her favorite authors?  Did you guess that she would be totally motivated to convince one of them, Adam Gidwitz, to visit her school?  Well, I am happy to announce that Adam is visiting Clinton in April and the kids are totally psyched.  Each 4th and 5th grade teacher has received a copy of A Tale Dark and Grimm to read to their class.  You can totally tell that they have started reading due to  the spike in requests for the book!  Kids want their own copy to read along with in class and to read at home.






Here is a video from his recent tour to give you a sneak peek at what we will see!!!


Teaching Kids to Code Presentation at NJECC 2015

A bitter cold day in January led me to Montclair State University for the 29th annual New Jersey Educational Computing Cooperative Conference.  It was a valuable day of learning for me as I had the opportunity to learn and be inspired by some powerful voices.  Jonathan (JR) Rochelle from Google had a fantastic keynote presentation that focused on inspiring students.  I especially enjoyed the videos on Rubiks Cube Questioning and Moonshot Thinking.

In the afternoon, I led a hands-on workshop for teachers on how to teach kids to code.  My favorite takeaway was that we are teaching future leaders the logic of coding.  The various languages will follow. This becomes key when people question the validity of drop and drag block language over learning text based languages  such as html, javascript etc.