Thursday, December 17, 2015

December in the Library!

This month has been exciting in the library! Maker Space Tuesdays and Thursdays have provided kids with an opportunity to create popsicle stick snowflakes. New books acquired from the book fair have made their way to the shelves. New cork has been added to the walls to have a place to hang posters. (Thanks Mr. Larry!) Shelves have been moved to create a more inviting space.

With all the rain outside, the library has been a popular place for recess. Creativity and fun to be had by all! We have many games, coloring options, building toys, and more. 

6th graders participated in the Hour of Code, where they learned the basics of computer programming. Try for yourself at

I always have need of helpers in the library. Whether that be during your student's library time or just a few minutes before you are running off to your next adventure, please consider joining us! Contact me at with any questions.

For the month of November and December, the Kinder class has been reading books about friendship and working together. On Wednesday we read, "Unicorn Thinks He is Pretty Great". After the story each student made a paper chain. We decided that by putting all our tiny chains together we could create a big chain! Now the friendship chain will hang in the Kinder room to remind everyone what you can do with teamwork! 

SMART Reading Tips for the Holidays

Winter break is right around the corner, and holidays can get pretty hectic! Routines can fly out the window with celebrations, travel and out-of-town guests. As your family prepares for the holidays, use these tips for keeping kids engaged in learning and reading over winter break.
  1. Read for fun! Whether your child is in the mood for holiday stories or the newest installment from a favorite series, winter break provides the perfect opportunity to set aside school books and read for fun. Make time for bedtime stories to create the routine and enjoy books on a daily basis.
  2. Stock up on books at the local library. Help your child pick out books they’re interested in reading over the winter break. Libraries may also have fun, free holiday activities throughout the break.
  3. Make the most of travel time. Turn travel time to or from a holiday get-together into an opportunity to practice reading. You can look for license plates from different states, try to find the alphabet on the license plates, or count the number of red (or white or green) cars you see. Read street signs and billboards you see along the way.
  4. Create a new tradition. A little predictability is comforting for kids. Starting a special Winter Break Story Time can be a new tradition that links reading with happy memories. Hot cocoa and your favorite stories will have the whole family feeling comfy and cozy, while creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Remember, you don’t have to be an expert to help your child with reading. By simply interacting with children around books, you can show them that books are important and worthy of our attention.


Monday, September 14, 2015

Access your SIA Library!

Parents and community members can have accounts too! Just email me at to get your account set up!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

But how will I keep my kids reading if there is no incentives?

What do you do in your home to increase reading? 

There are two schools of thought regarding rewards or incentives for reading. 
1. You read because you are supposed to and the reward is the completion of the book.
2. Sometimes children need rewards and external motivators to read. 

I have read many articles and listened to multiple lectures for each side. I have come to the conclusion that neither are right, but neither are wrong. Children are different and their approach to reading and parental support approach will differ as well. I say...if it works for you and your kid, do it! That means, whatever works for your child is the right way. Don't be frustrated if that way doesn't work for each of your children. We celebrate their differences and tell them all the time how life would be boring if we were all the same. Learning is different too! 

Check out Ms. Sarah's class page for all sorts of good info on helping your reader. 

From our friends at Mult Co Lib School Corps:
Ideas for Helping Beginning Readers:
But I Don’t Like Reading
Reading is important to success.  For most people, it is an enjoyable and relaxing way to spend time. But for some children, reading is low on the list of “fun things to do.”  It can be very frustrating to hear a child say “I don’t like to read!” But it can happen. Be a good listener.  Try to find out why your child resists reading.
  • Is reading difficult? Check with your child’s teacher to see if she or he is having trouble reading at school.
  • Is it just more fun to be on the computer or watch television?  Establish a reading time that is consistent and balanced with screen time.
  • Are the right materials available? The library is full of high interest materials on every possible topic and in many different formats including picture books, magazines, activity books, comics, fact books, and graphic novels.  
Are you modeling that reading is important and valued?  Set aside some time when your child can see you reading.  Whether it is for work or pleasure, it is important for your child to know reading is an essential part of everyday life.

For middle school:

Become a Summer Reading Volunteer
Summer Reading is a program that gets kids and teens excited about reading during the summer and encourages them to become lifelong library users. Teens and adults are invited to apply to join our team of volunteers as Summer Reading assistants. Summer Reading volunteers register people for the game, award prizes, talk with kids about the books they have read, help with events, record keeping and more! The Summer Reading volunteer application is available online at

Monday, March 30, 2015

Book Fair Guest Authors Meet and Greet

SIA Spring Book Fair April 6-10
Open from 8am-3:30pm (4pm on Tuesday)
Extended hours on Thursday, April 9 from 6-7pm
in the SIA Library

SIA PTC and Treehouse Books is pleased to present our 2015 Authors for our Book Fair Meet and Greet on April 7 from 2:30-4:00pm. 
Please mark your calendars and join us in the SIA Library! 

Trinette Weber, co-author of From Shaniko to Pearl Harbor

Trinette Weber met her husband, Bob, when she was only 11 years old, shortly after he was evacuated to Portland from Pearl Harbor, following the dreadful bombing. Bob and Trinette dated on and off during high school and college, were married in 1951 and were blessed with 51 years of marriage. 

After Bob was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, they worked together on his eye witness story including the story of his Dad running away from home at the age of 15, his own childhood in Hawaii, and then how he was one of the first people to see the planes arriving to bomb the island.

After Bob's passing, it became Trinette's passion and grief therapy to finish Bob's story As a labor of love and a legacy for her children, she finished the book and now sells From Shaniko to Pearl Harbor at the Arizona Memorial in Hawaii and at several other places including her flower shop, Trinette's Floral, in Portland, Oregon. (From

William Burt, author of The King of the Trees Series

Having spent most of his teenage years vicariously adventuring in Middle Earth, the author is an avid fantasy fan. His first allegorical fantasy title, "The King of the Trees," came out in 1998 (WinePress; second edition, 2004). Bowing to reader demand, he has expanded the series to include a total of seven titles to date, with more to follow. While still in high school, he began his writing career editing his father's popular identification guides, "Edible and Poisonous Plants of the Western/Eastern States." As an Assistant Professor in the Special Education Department at Western Oregon University, he served as a successful grant-writer and program coordinator.

Burt holds a B.S. in English from Lewis and Clark College and an M.S. from Western Oregon University in Deaf Education. In addition to writing books, he works as an RID-certified American Sign Language interpreter with over thirty years' experience. His interests include reading, foreign languages and mycology. He is married with two grown children. (From

Heather Nelson, author of Daisy, the Protector Dog, Lost Family: FOUND!, and First Summer with Horses

Heather Nelson lives with her family on a farm in the foothills of majestic Mount Hood, Oregon.  Daisy is a real-live dog whose behavior, personality, and love of children influenced the writing of this book.  Daisy continues to protect and entertain her "family-pack".  Heather is currently writing other inspirational animal stories. (From

Lauren Lynne, author of the Secret Watcher Series

I’m author Lauren Lynne. I’ve always been a writer but let me tell you, it’s lots more fun when I can make the choices about where a story is going. I’m also a teacher so I get that we have to have students meet certain criteria, but as a kid… I hated being told what to write. The good side of growing up is that you can write whatever you want. The down side… Now I can’t read it without my glasses!

Personally, I’m drawn to all things ‘action-adventure’ in film and literature. Notice I didn’t say ‘real life’? No bungee jumping, cliff diving or parkour for me. I’d likely kill myself as I’m a klutz. Skydiving? Nope! I’d be the one to fall out of the plane without a parachute. My oldest and I have taken karate together and I’ve spent hours watching both boys participate in a variety of sports, including parkour, without incident, unless of course you count occasional broken toes. I have created a character who is much braver, tougher and more graceful than I am.

Coming in 2015, watch for an all new genre!  a dystopian with a female protagonist.

In the pipeline… a Christmas children’s book and a coauthored fantasy. (From

Monday, March 2, 2015

Reading program begins!!

Open a Book, Find a Treasure!
Under the Sea Reading Program

Dear Parents/Guardians ~

We are so excited to have partnered with the Eisenschmidt Pool in St. Helens and the Portland Aquarium to bring you the Under the Sea Reading Program!

Our Reading Incentive Program will run from Monday, March 2, 2015 through Sunday, March 29, 2015.  Students have the chance to earn a small prize each week, as well as celebrate our successes with a Pool Party at the Eisenschmidt Pool in St. Helens on Saturday, April 4 from 2:30-4:30pm (under 7 requires a parent to be in the pool at the same time). Each participant in the program will also receive a ticket for free admission for themselves and one adult to the Portland Aquarium to be used by December 20, 2015. 

This is how the program will work:
  • Students track their reading minutes on a weekly record.  Each week’s record is attached to this letter, but should only be returned on its corresponding week (with 2 being returned the Monday after Spring Break).
  • Students in Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade should read 20 minutes each day, 3rd, 4th, and 5th should read 30 minutes each day. The goal is to read daily. Extra reading time can be listed next to the corresponding date box, so I can congratulate them on their commitment to reading.
  • When all boxes have been marked (dated, “x” out, colored in, or whatever method you decide to use) and the record is signed by a parent/caregiver, the reading record is turned in to their classroom teacher or directly to the library.  Records are due on Mondays (two on March 30, due to Spring Break).
  • Awards will be distributed to students who have completed a record for that week during their library class.
  • The program will run for a total of four weeks, giving students four opportunities to turn in reading records. 
  • The last Monday to turn in reading records will be March 30.

As always, reading to your child counts towards their minutes goal.  If you have any questions, please contact me at or 503-621-3426.

Happy Reading!
Ms. Terra

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Under the Sea Reading Incentive Program is coming!!!

Mark your calendars and get your stack of books ready! 
Our Under the Sea Reading Incentive Program begins on March 2.  Ms. Cindy has already created the best bulletin board ever. Thanks Ms. Cindy!
We have partnered with Eisenschmidt Pool in St. Helens to provide a pool party on April 4 from 2:30pm-4:30pm to celebrate our achievements. Students will be awarded a fun "Under the Sea" themed gift for returning their weekly reading trackers. Every student that participates will also be awarded a certificate for free admission for one adult and one child to the Portland Aquarium. These trackers will go home on Monday, March 2.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Info from Mrs. Fisher for 3-5 OBOB teams

Dear Parents,

Our school is excited to have 10 teams participating in our local Battle of the Books trivia challenge! Our 3rd through 5th graders have been reading lots and meeting with their teams to get ready for this event. The battles are happening the first 2 weeks in February during the lunch hour in the library. Each team will battle 2 different days. A battle is 16 questions. The team with the most total points after 2 battles will advance to the regional level of competition, which takes place on a Saturday morning in March. We will announce our school's winning team on Friday afternoon, February 13th.

What you can be doing now to help your child is reviewing the list of books and their authors. The first 8 questions are called "in which book." It might ask, in which book does a character strap on fake footprints? The team has 15 seconds to whisper together and answer, Sasquatch by Roland Smith. It's perfectly fine if a student has only read a few books, because they can all memorize the title and author list and be a great help to their team!  During our first local battles, we will have students take turns answering the question as their team spokesperson.  You can also be reading these books with your child! Read to them, take turns reading, listen to the books in an audio format, and enjoy the stories! There are practice questions for the students to review to help remember the details of the  stories. 

Our goals for the Battle of the Books include fostering a love of reading, widening the circle of books that students read, and fostering teamwork. We appreciate your help in reinforcing these aspects of the reading program with your child.

The schedule for the battles is posted at school. Ask your child what two days his or her team is battling and tell your child that you are proud of him or her for being part of this event! Thank you for encouraging and supporting the love of. Reading.

Nancy Fisher
Oregon Battle of the Books helper

Monday, January 12, 2015

Check out this Drive2Life Contest open to grades 6-12

2015 Drive2Life Student PSA Contest

Open to Students in Grades 6–12

Students in grades 6–12 can help promote pedestrian safety by entering the 2015 Drive2Life Contest.
Contest Topic: Help prevent distracted walking
How to Enter
To enter, each participating student must create a storyboard or written script for a 30-second public service announcement (PSA) to help prevent distracted walking.

One Grand Prize winner will win $1,000 and a trip to NYC to have his or her PSA filmed professionally. Plus, the winner and PSA video will be featured on Teen Kids News and in select Scholastic magazines! See the Prizes section below for more details.

Click here for complete details on the contest and how to enter:
Contest Overview
  • Entries must be storyboards or written scripts that illustrate the PSA topic—preventing distracted walking—and should be 30 seconds in length.
  • Videos will not be accepted.
  • Individual entries only—no group entries are permitted.
  • Each entry must have a completed and signed contest entry form securely attached to it. Download the entry form above. (Note: You may want to print and complete the teacher portion of the form before copying the entry form for students.)
  • Online submissions are not permitted.
  • Entries with completed entry forms must be mailed to: Drive2Life Contest, Scholastic Inc., 557 Broadway, Office 519, New York, NY 10012.
Contest Deadline
Entries must be postmarked by February 10, 2015, and received by February 24, 2015.
Judging Criteria
Entries will be judged on the following criteria:
  1. Originality and creativity (30 points) (Is the PSA unique and creative?)
  2. PSA concept (30 points) (Does the PSA clearly and accurately address the contest topic—preventing distracted walking? Are the message and concept effective?)
  3. Clarity of message (30 points) (Is the idea communicated clearly? Is the PSA well organized?)
  4. Quality of writing (10 points) (Does the PSA reflect proper spelling and grammar?)
The Grand Prize winner receives $1,000 and a trip to New York City, where a professional film crew will transform the student’s vision into a 30-second commercial! Four runners-up (two from grades 6–8 and two from grades 9–12) each will receive $500.

The teacher of each student winner will receive a classroom subscription to a relevant Scholastic magazine (30 student editions and one teacher’s guide) for the 2015–2016 school year.

See Official Rules for details. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited.
Winners' List
For a list of winners (available after April 1, 2015), send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Drive2Life Winners’ List, Scholastic Inc., 557 Broadway, Office 519, New York, NY 10012.