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R U a Google Fan AND an aspiring artist?

Creativity February 14, 2008

Okay I must admit I am probably the world’s (almost) devoted fan of Google.  I especially  LOVE holidays @ Google. Did anyone see the Google logo today in honor of Valentine’s Day??  How CUTE was that? (I would picture one here but then I would not be copyright compliant since I did not ask permission.)  Google does this just about every holiday or special day, and I always visit (having to LEAVE me iGoogle page) just to see what cute, funny, or metaphorical creation they have come up with as the Google logo. Link here to see some retired logos from past holidays.

Check out Doodle 4 Google, and art contest especially for k12 students.  You can design a logo that may be selected to showcase in the near future, and you will get FULL credit.   Let me know if you are interested. I can sponsor your entry, and Ms. Devine in the art room has agreed to sponsor it as well.  Get drawing! Show us your creative juices!! No computers necessary.


Image: ‘flikr1327

A meme – could be worse – could be junk mail…

Uncategorized January 17, 2008

Well on second thought a meme is pretty close to junk mail. THANKS Mr. Granito. So I hate to disappoint him, but I had already been tagged by my friend Diane Cordell in New York, and I tagged Valerie Byrd-Fort, who I think tagged Fran (Booklover472), who tagged Granito, who has so graciously returned the favor to me. I imagine he checked my other blog and knew I had been tagged already there, which is why he got this one. Man I have got to recruit some contributors so I don’t have to continue the vicious cycle.

Here are 7 random and useless facts that are important only to me:

  1. I have worked in no less than 7 schools in assorted teaching positions, including every grade b/w 3rd-8th, and I have been in a school library at every level, k-12 in my 22 years in this profession. Disclaimer: Each job change (except the current one) was a direct result of my husband changing jobs, causing us to physically move. Ahh the life of a high school coach’s wife! He has finally given up coaching and is now an assistant principal here. (But he is thinking about going back to coaching and teaching…and moving here–which means for once he will change jobs b/c of me! I love that guy!)
  2. I do not have a favorite book or author b/c I can be talked into a different favorite at any given moment. Strange for a school teacher-librarian, huh?
  3. I broke my nose when I was fifteen. We were visiting Myrtle Beach, and a group of us went “pool-hopping” along the beach-front. Somebody jumped in as I was coming up to get out, and not only did I have my nose broken, they were wearing cut off jeans, and a snap ripped my cheek open, and I obtained two black eyes. This was the beginning of one of those weeklong vacations, and so I was tragically a FRIGHT for the remainder of the week. For a 15yo, any mar on the face is traumatic. Quite possibly the WORST vacation ever.
  4. I caught mononucleosis (“mono”) from my first ever boyfriend. It was our first kiss that did it. Bedridden for days! He got it too. We never decided who gave it to whom.
  5. I had strep throat during both my Thanksgiving vacation and my Christmas vacation in one year. Absolute sickest I’ve ever been. I returned from Thanksgiving break still feeling a bit puny, but well enough to come back to school. We had three weeks before Christmas, and I had a student who missed almost two weeks of school, but came back on the last day before Christmas break. I hugged her and welcomed her back, and everyone was so excited to see her. We all asked her where she’d been, and she said she had been out with a bad case of strep throat. I SWEAR as soon as she said it, my throat began hurting. Absolutely felt like I was swallowing glass. (Aren’t I a good storyteller? But this is absolutely true!)
  6. My husband is 7.5 years older than me. When I first met him, he was a 2nd year Algebra teacher in my high school where I was a senior. I worked as an assistant in the office, and was sent to the athletic office with a stack of forms. We bumped into each other in a stairwell, and he caused me to drop all the papers. He shrugged, said, “Oops, sorry!” and kept right on going, not offering to help me pick them up in the least. I hated him from then until we met again 4 years later. He swears this never happened. Just goes to show I wasn’t even a blip on his radar then, which makes me glad to know he was not interested in high school girls. Yes he was cute then, but I was so mad.
  7. We rekindled our relationship while I was beginning my junior year in college and he was then in his 5th year teaching. I swore to him that I would NEVER see him, and that I did not like him at all, that I would never leave my current boyfriend for him, and that I would NEVER forget the stairway incident. I worked at Burger King, and so he came up to see me after football practice everyday. I kept telling him to go away, and that I had a boyfriend (who was away at school too.) But he would not. Finally one day after work, tired and smelling like french fries, I did not have a ride home. He offered to drive me home, and crazily I accepted the offer. I hugged my door ready to jump right out all the way home. I trembled b/c I didn’t feel like I knew him well enough to accept a ride like that, and was absolutely scared to death. But I arrived safe and sound at home (I still lived at home with my parents while in college) and sat in the driveway talking to him forever. He would not let me go in until I let him kiss me, and the rest is history. When I told my Mom I wanted to date him, she said I was too young to be going out with a grown man. I guess she was wrong b/c we’ve been married for 22 years. Joe Dowling, principal at St. James High School right here in the district was a groomsman in my wedding. Joe and my husband are close friends.

Okay–I’m supposed to list the rules and tag seven folks, but since this meme has come full circle to me again, I am officially ending it here. I hope his other tags carry it on.

Is MySpace responsible?

Ethical Use of Information, MySpace, Social Networking November 18, 2007

Recently a 13 year-old girl committed suicide by hanging herself after a so-called MySpace friend said he did not want to be her friend anymore after he heard she was mean to her friends. But it turns out the boy who was her “so-called” myspace friend was in actuality a made up character that another neighborhood Mom created.

WHi is responsible? the mother? MySpace? the mother of the 13 yo who knowlingly allowed her daughter to have a MySpace page even though she was aware kids are supposed to be 14? Hmmm, I’m definitely watching this one in the news.


View a CNN report from one of their news shows:

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Here’s another one.



Podcast November 13, 2007


Testing out hosting a podcast here.

MySpace rule-breakers

Copyright, Ethical Use of Information, Rules November 11, 2007

I discussing in recent weeks the ease of downloading songs from P2P file sharing sites, other discussions have been stirred up in the library, and one that keeps coming up is students who have a MySpace page AND that some of these same students have posted to their MySPace page their favorite songs as background music.

Most middle school students are b/w the ages 11-13.  Yes, there are a few a little younger and a few a little older than this age range, but the vast majority hit the age range 11-13 exactly.

I feel the need to clue you in on some rules that I feel are flagrantly being broken by many of our students–and seek to enlighten them.  So please pay attention.

According to the “Terms and Agreements” of the end user license agreement that you click to be granted webspace on MySpace, most of you seem to be breaking Rule #1, which says you must be 14 years old.  Rule #2 has to do with posting copyrighted materials (like songs) to your page.

I won’t try to tell you, but rather let you read this for your self.  Just incase it’s blocked at school, I have pictures below too. Be sure to visit away from school if you want to read the entire contents.

I’m not going to report anyone–but rather just ask you to “do the right thing–make good choices.” If you have a page on this social networking site, you are not adhering to the guidelines set forth to be a user.

Okay–now I’ll get off my soapbox.

Your teacher-librarian, Mrs. Nelson

msrule1.jpg msrule2.jpg

Dear Fox News-you are failing spelling

Education, Media, RSS November 4, 2007

I caught this in my RSS reader today. Recently in classes we discussed how RSS feeds were initially used only by the news wires–enabling newspapers and other news media to jump on and use stories for papers, magazines, and television productions. Can anyone out there see a mistake in the head line?? Is it important? Does it change the meaning of the story? Should the one responsible be punished, reprimanded, or perhaps even lose a job over such an error? Click on the image to see the actual story, which is clean and error free.


More on the Illegal Downloading Case

Copyright, Ethical Use of Information October 17, 2007

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What do you think CMS?

CMS: Are u willing to pay the $$

Copyright, Ethical Use of Information October 15, 2007

Illegal downloader ordered to pay 222Kjudge.jpg

Yes that is the headline! I saw it 2 Saturdays ago in my Saturday paper. You see on October 4th, a Minnesota resident was convicted of illegal file sharing (of copyrighted music) and ordered to pay a whopping $222,000 in penalties and fine.  She is a single mother raising 2 middle school-aged children, and beginning now, one fourth of her paycheck each month will be skimmed off to pay for her crime.  Read the whole article here.

Tell me how that makes you feel?  Do you agree or disagree? Does the crime fit the punishment? I want to know what YOU–CMS  thinks!

Image: ‘Courtroom One Gavel

Let’s Agree

Rules September 2, 2007

Hey, I borowed this from Beck Midle School in Greenville, but I like it. I want you to agree with it!

13 Things to Remember About Using the Library Media Cente @ CMS:

  1. Follow the 4 Non-Negotiables: Dress Code, Planner, ID Badge, 3 R’s (Rights, Respect, Responsibility)
    (My notes–we don’t use planners or ID badges, so we’ll have to figure out some kind of substitute. But the Dress Code and 3 Rights are awesome!)
  2. Library Media Center hours are 7:30-3:30, Monday-Friday. Students must have a pass written in their planner to visit the library at any time during the day for any reason. (CMS may have to settle for just a pass system.)
  3. Students should enter the library quietly and use a whisper voice while in the library: RESPECT for the RIGHTS of others to have a quiet place to work.
  4. Students should leave their area in the library as they found it or better (push in chairs, pick-up trash, leave books in neat piles on tables, etc.) : RESPONSIBILITY for keeping their environment clean and attractive.
  5. Food, drinks, gum and candy are strictly prohibited in the library : RESPONSIBLITY  for maintaining equipment and furnishings. (Though I am considering a special area that will welcome food and drinks…still in the planning process and TBA.)
  6. Students must have their current year ID badge in order to check out books. (Oh well, we don’t have ab aID system at our school, so this one may have to go.)
  7. Students may check out as many books as they like from the library, but must remember that they are responsible for anything they check out : RESPONSIBILITY for keeping up with school property.
  8. Books may be checked out for 2 weeks at a time (except reference books, which are 1 night) but books can be renewed for an additional 2 weeks as long as no one else has requested the book : RIGHTS  of others who may want to use the same book.
  9. Due dates are stamped in the front cover of library books : RESPONSIBILITY for keeping up with due dates.
  10. Overdue books are assessed fines of $0.05 per day, per book (reference books are assessed $0.50 per day). The ceiling for overdue fines is $5.00 per book.
  11. Students may not check out additional books, unless assigned by a teacher (novel sets, etc.), if they have overdue books or overdue fines : RIGHTS of students to have necessary materials to complete their assignments.
  12. Students are responsible for paying for lost or damaged books. Overdue fines, lost books and charges for damaged books will remain on students’ library records as they move from school to school until they graduate : RESPONSIBILITY for taking care of debts.
  13. Students should use the computers in the library in a RESPONSIBLE manner by following the Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) found in their student planner. Students may use the library computers in the morning before school (7:30-8:15) and after school (3:00-3:30) to check school email, play games and view appropriate sites under the direct supervision of the library staff. Computers are for instructional use only during the school day (8:15-3:00) : RESPONSIBILITY for your education. (This one will have to be negotiated too.)

Our blog rules

Introduction August 18, 2007

This Blog is open to students, school media specialists, teachers, and parents. Our library blog is just an online extension to our physical school building, and we will all abide by the following rules:

• All school rules and our student and employee AUPs (Acceptable Use Policies) apply in this online environment.
• We will respect each other’s right to voice their opinions.
• Don’t link your blog posts to your personal online space/blog/etc.
• Be safe, don’t post last names or photos of yourself. Never share personal information about you, or the school.
• Before publishing, check your spelling and grammar – we want people to see that we know what we’re doing.
• Please don’t use traditional texting abbreviations (lol, bff, btw)
• If you want to write your opinion on a topic, make sure you’re not going to be offensive to anyone as you write it.
• Never disrespect someone else in this blog, whether it’s a person, an organization, or just a general idea. We don’t want someone making a stab at what we are passionate about; don’t do it to someone else.
• Remember, all posts are moderated, which means they get checked before they go online, and won’t be approved if they don’t measure up!

How to make a comment on a post:
Simply click on the hyperlinked word COMMENTS and a box will appear where you can type in your thoughts. Signing your name is preferred, but please only use your first name and then your last initial if desired. Remember they are moderated and so will not appear initially until your teacher librarian has had time to approve them. Rights are reserved as moderator to edit responses for content.