2011-12 SC Young Adult Book Award Nominees

Presentation1The nominees for next year’s SC Young Adult Book Award have been announced.  Why not get ahead by checking one (or more!) out today.  The titles include:

Angry Management by Chris Crutcher
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
Brutal by Michael B. Harmon
The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams
Diary of a Witness by Carol Ryan Hyde
Dirty Little Secrets by Cynthia Jaynes Omololu
The Ghosts of War: The True Story of a 19-year Old GI by Ryan Smithson
The Girl in the Arena by Lise Haines
Gray Baby: A Novel by Scott Loring Sanders
Hate List by Jennifer Brown
Hold Still by Nina LaCour
Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern
King of the Screwups by K.L Going
Leviathan by Scott Westerfield
Muchacho: A Novel by LouAnne Johnson
Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough
Purple Heart by Patricia McCormick
Rock n’ Roll Soldier: A Memoir by Dean Ellis Kohler
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
Unsigned Hype: A Novel by Booker T. Mattison

Voting for the 2010-11 nominees is open through February 28th.  Ask your library media specialist how you can cast your vote!  Remember, you must read at least three nominee titles to be eligible to vote.

Banned Book Week 2010

September 25 – October 2nd is Banned Book Week.   From the ALA Website:

Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment.  Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.

Intellectual freedom—the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular—provides the foundation for Banned Books Week.  BBW stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints for all who wish to read and access them.

The books featured during Banned Books Week have been targets of attempted bannings.  Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community to retain the books in the library collections.  Imagine how many more books might be challenged—and possibly banned or restricted—if librarians, teachers, and booksellers across the country did not use Banned Books Week each year to teach the importance of our First Amendment rights and the power of literature, and to draw attention to the danger that exists when restraints are imposed on the availability of information in a free society.

Banned Books Week is sponsored by the American Booksellers Association; American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression; the American Library Association;American Society of Journalists and Authors; Association of American Publishers; and the National Association of College Stores.  It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.


To honor the freedom to read, the library displays books that have been challenged or banned throughout the years.  A list of challenged books from 2009-10 can be found here.   I am a firm believer in the individual’s right to choose for himself/herself what they would like to read.  As the poster says “Think for Yourself and Let Others Do the Same.”

Taking time to smell the roses


I know, the picture doesn’t have a rose in it, but I’m very proud of this photo – taken just minutes ago while out “walking” the dog.  I’m REALLY enjoying my new Nikon D5000 camera!

This is Labor Day weekend.  Labor day “is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” (US DOL.gov)  I planned to take this weekend off -  to sit back and relax, get some reading done, and generally be a sloth!  However, I just can’t seem to turn off my work switch.  There are so many things needing to be done and/or planned for in the upcoming weeks/months.

2 Read or Not 2 Read – Midland Valley and I have finally gotten our book club blog up and running.  I’m still waiting on some last minute approval before I can give out applications to my students; however, Midland Valley introduced the blog to their students this past week.  I’m VERY excited about having our students interact and share book reviews/discussions through blogging.

Library Card Sign-up Month – September is library cards sign-up month and I, along with the librarian from the Wagener public library, have been asked to visit/speak with the middle school English classes on Sept. 22nd.   We are supposed to share what we are doing/offering in our programs.  Still not sure what I’m going to speak about, but I was specifically asked to share the library’s web page, the new blog, and other “multimedia for 21st century skills” – hopefully I’ll figure out whatever that means by the 22nd!  Wish me luck.

SC Young Adult Book Awards – The nominees for the 2010-11 SC Young Adult Book Awards have been announced.  As always, there is a display of these title in the library.  In addition, I am on the SCYABA book award committee and have been reading a bunch of new YA titles.  I’m really excited about many of them and can’t wait to recommend them to our students.  Being on this committee forces me to read a wide variety of YA titles I wouldn’t normally read.

WSHS Book Club – tentatively, the first book club will meet this Friday, Sept. 10th, during both lunches.  We will be adopting the Midland Valley book club monthly themes – September’s theme is Mystery.  Please encourage your students to join the book club.

Technology Workshops - the new Technology Committee for WSHS has been tasked to provide workshops for the next Early Release Wednesday.  We’ve come up with a proposal and are waiting for the okay before developing our workshops.   All TC members are working on finding and reviewing web resources.  Right now, we are reviewing the AASL Top 25 Websites for Teaching and Learning (2009) to determine which of the blocked sites we want to petition to have unblocked.  The classroom teachers are supposed to review and provide feedback as to whether or not they would be useful in their classrooms.  I’ve created a Diigo account for WSHS where I’ve begun bookmarking these and other useful or interesting links.

These are just a few of the items on my mind this weekend.  Others include: library advocacy, August monthly report, WSHS Drama Club (meets this Wednesday); Banned Book Week (begins Sept. 25th); pull-out classes begin soon; Teen Read Week (Oct. 17-23); signing up for another photography class; submitting a proposal for the SC Association of School Librarians conference, and making plans to attend the SC Title 1 (Oct. 25-27) and  SC EdTech (Oct. 27-29) conferences.

*Sigh* – I think I’ll just go read a book instead!  Enjoy what’s left of the Labor Day weekend ya’ll!