Conference Workshops

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Makerspace Workshops

The Differentiated Makerspace: Using Makerspaces with ELLs and Special Education Students
Gina Seymour

This session will share our experiences working with English Language Learners and Special Education students in our high school library makerspace. Participants will acquire practical advice on creating a hands-on learning area with activities for students of all grade levels and abilities. These activities go across all areas of the curriculum, can be self-directed and promote an environment of collaboration and communication. Examples will be given of makerspace activities that promote confidence in special population students, something they often lack in other classes. Attendees will leave with strategies that they can incorporate to provide inclusive instruction through maker activities.

“Making” a Difference
Kristina Holzweiss

This presentation will offer the participants a number of ways that they can create community service activities in their library makerspace. The participants will learn how to create community service projects in their schools, whether or not they have a makerspace, using low budget materials.

Makerspace on a Dime
George DeChant

Anyone can afford to do some form of Maker Space. Participants will learn how they can create maker spaces with little or no cost — from making paper airplanes – to using online music tools to vinegar and baking soda rockets in soda bottles or making bookmarks that double as characters for a puppet show. The main thrust is how to get students to have fun and be creative, without actually spending any money.

Mobile Makerspace: Messes and Successes
Lindsay Neumire

The School Library System at Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES has developed a collection of circulating makerspace equipment for our region’s libraries. We currently have twelve different types of kits, and we are continuously adding to our collection. In this session, participants will hear about our experiences with a traveling makerspace, including successes and failures. There will also be opportunities for hands-on experience with some of our equipment.

3-D Printers
Ronald Pasqualetti

The presentation/demonstration offers hands on experience using different types of 3D printers. The course objective is to allow the user to set-up and use, determine the best print material, settings and strategies, produce the best prints and use the prints to their ultimate advantage.

Make the Most of Maker Space
Linda Fasano and Mary Shands

Many elementary librarians are scheduled full time with classes and are not able to make time for maker space. Linda and Mary collaborated to coordinate a maker space for elementary students that is assisted by middle school students. Ideas on how to make a maker space when you don’t have the time or the help in your building.

STEM Workshops

Game Design as a Catalyst for Learning
Tracey Wong

By offering game design as a catalyst for learning, learning goes to the next level. Students explore their interests, passions and curiosities as they become creative, innovative and practice thinking outside of the box. Learn to create transdisciplinary learning opportunities that give students voice. Minecraft and VR Quest (Virtual Reality Quest) are the two gaming softwares that will be highlighted.

Challenge Accepted!
Sheri McNair and Shannon Mersand  

Want to learn the why and how of initiating STEM challenges in your library? In this workshop, we will provide you with several low cost challenges that you will be eager to try in your own library. You will even take part in a challenge or two!

Breakout of the Rut
Mary Zdrojewski and Marie Smith 

Escape rooms, real life adventure games that require critical thinking and teamwork, are popping up all over the place, but how can we take this exciting concept and use it to teach our students information literacy skills? The answer is Breakouts. Inspired by Breakout EDU, librarians are creating games that teach and reinforce information fluency and library skills while incorporating locks, mysteries, puzzles, and secret codes. In this presentation, two school librarians will show the ways that they have used Breakouts in their schools.

Oh, the Places You’ll Go! – Bring the World Into Your Library with Technology
Mike Drezek

Books that fill our shelves help children learn about their world. Students love them. They also love learning through video. This session will share strategies for flattening library walls with technology. With a few clicks, you could be learning from a favorite author, an industry professional or with students many miles away. Skype, Google Hangouts and other tools help students build empathy through global connections. This presentation will encourage educators to use the power of technology to connect their classroom to the world. Skype lessons, Nearpod VR, Google Expeditions, are just a few. Come learn ways to bring the world to your library. Where will you go next?!

Creative STEM Camp for Girls
Angela Boccuzzi-Reichert 

Girls STEM camp girls the opportunity to explore STEM opportunities through hands on activities. The camp is a collaborative effort between the Hilton Central School District, Hilton Parma Rec and Monroe 2 BOCES. Girls have the opportunity to explore 3d printing, Little Bits and stop motion videos with Legos and robotics using materials provided through the Monroe 2 BOCES Maker Space lending library. Coding is taught using Scratch through the Google Camp program that has strands in Music, Art and Animation. Girls work together to solve problems using critical thinking and inquiry. This presentation will provide a history of how we got started 3 years ago and the collaboration that is needed to make the camp a success. Activities will be shared and participants will have the opportunity to take part in some hands on fun!

Engineering Through ELA
Clay Nolan

In this session, we’ll discuss how to design lessons that incorporate literacy but doing it through a STEM lens. In this instance, we will explore how using a non-fiction book can kick-off a lesson series and infuse literacy, science, and math from the content of the book while meeting grade level specific Common Core standards. Participants will be able to experience the lesson by partaking in the design challenge aspect of building and design, and will leave eager to design your own lessons with the central point being ELA through STEM.

Literacy Workshops

Breakout Session with Gordon Korman 
Breakout Session with Gene Luen Yang 
Dancing at the Crossroads: Stories to Reach At-Risk Kids
Lorna MacDonald Czarnota

Stories as models for living reach teens when stern lectures cannot. We will discuss youth issues, story and metaphor, and youth response to story. Through listening to stories and follow-up activities, participants will examine various ways in which stories can be used with at-risk teens. Participants will begin to formulate ways to integrate programs for these youth in their library curriculum.

Planning a Successful Author Visit … the View from Both Sides
Jan Siebold

Jan was a school librarian for over 30 years in the East Aurora Schools and currently works as a part-time librarian at the Aurora Town Public Library.  She is the author of three award-winning middle-grade novels:  Rope Burn, Doing Time Online and My Nights at the Improv.  Jan has also written publications for WNED-TV and the American Library Association.  She has conducted children’s writing workshops at various venues including the Roycroft Campus in East Aurora.  Based on her experiences both as a librarian and a visiting author she will present tips and insights for planning an effective author visit.

Bringing the World to Young Readers
Alicia Klepeis 

From candy around the globe to vampires, Alicia Klepeis loves to bring the world to young readers in fun and surprising ways. Throughout her writing (over forty books and counting), she makes geography, history, and science more than just a laundry list of facts. She will discuss how to get kids, even reluctant readers, excited about reading and researching. A former middle school teacher, Alicia will share strategies for how to build on the information covered in her books in a classroom or library setting.

It takes 2 to make a thing go right/ It takes 2 to make independent reading out of sight 
Lynne Knaze and Jeanne Skotnicki

Why can’t my students find something they want to read and stick with it? This session will explore and detail an independent reading program that empowers students to be self-aware readers who identify their reading interests, utilize tools to select and locate titles in and out of the classroom, read independently and evaluate their reading progress while setting goals for themselves as readers.

Poetry! For Joy and for Craft
Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Poetry is joy. Poetry helps us discover who we are and who we wish to become. And because poems are generally built from a small number of lines, studying poetry helps young readers and writers understand meaning, structure, metaphor, patterns, and word choice…one page at a time. This workshop will explore many books, websites, and ideas for sharing poetry in a unit or throughout a year. Help students fall in love with poems, the most elegant writing teachers of all.

Programming Workshops

Localvore Club: Cooking up Engagement & Community
Melissa Bryant and Gail Brisson

The Trumansburg Middle School Localvore Club is a collaboration started by Special Education teacher Melissa Bryant and librarian Gail Brisson. Come & learn how this program combines research, reading, writing, science, and math with hands-on, practical skills like cooking and gardening in order to build student engagement and career readiness, as well as collaboration among teachers and community members. We’ll even include some of our most requested recipes!

Sensory Storytime
Jessica Sills, Melanie Gelster, and Susan Walterich

This presentation, hosted by a speech pathologist (and owner of We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gym), a special education teacher, and a school librarian (and mother of a child with autism) will offer an insider’s view of autism. Several ideas will be shared on how to reach students through their various senses with hands-on activities, movement, music, and crafts. Participants will leave with book lists and lesson plan ideas that they can put into place right away to more effectively reach their students through sensory storytimes.

Make Programming Easy
Megan Moelbert, Rachel Brew, and Donn Riggi

Our panel of experienced librarians will share successful program ideas! Programs shared will include Coffee House Days, Family Reading Night, Battle of the Books, book related contests, and alternatives to booktalks. Designed for middle school but can be adapted for other grade levels. Besides some materials and handouts, participants will leave with ideas, inspiration, and plans for a new program, contest, or event in their library.

“Genrefying” your Library
Beth DiLucente

Re-organizing your library’s fiction section into genres can change the way you do business! Increase circulation, make it easier to browse and gain new insight into collection development. This presentation will include all the information to successfully implement a reorganization into genres.

Dewey Alternatives
Julie Hengenius and Kristie Miller

In both of our districts, we have ditched the Dewey Decimal System. Our presentation touches on our processes as well as other ideas for pursuing Dewey alternatives for collection management.

Fostering Civic Engagement through Archival Research
Kaitlin Holt and Deenah Shutzer

How can we compel students to change if not the entire world, their current one – not in the future, but right now and today? Using school history as a case-study, this session models how researching local history builds 21st Century learning skills while engaging and inspiring students to enact change within their schools, communities, and beyond.

Advocacy Workshops

Tweet All About It: Using Twitter Chats to Connect and Educate
Debra Cavaliere and Danielle Milazzo

Participants will have the opportunity to explore Twitter chats, both on a broad and localized level. In a Twitter chat stakeholders with various roles can connect and offer answers to timely educational issues. They will be encouraged to participate in a Twitter chat after hearing of the benefits of sharing ideas, collaborating with others, and gathering relevant methodologies.

When Am I Ever Going to Use This Anyway?
Claudine Dixon

Students sit in class with no concept of how what they are learning relates to college and career. By bringing people from the community and local universities into the classroom with hands-on demonstrations students have a better understanding of how the content pertains to possible future college options and employment. Participants will leave with an idea of community and college resources and activities they can access to bring real life opportunities to their students.

21st-Century Toolbox for the School Librarian
Karen Fox

Broaden the reach of your school library program through automation, marketing, and painless data analysis. This presentation will include practical tips to streamline patron attendance practices using your existing library automation system, simple marketing strategies to broaden your library’s physical and digital presence, and establish quick processes to analyze and share library usage data.

TLC for Your Library
Lisa Davis and Allison Livermore

Facilitators will give real world examples of how combining the knowledge of the Library Media Specialist, Technology Integration Specialist, and the classroom teacher creates learning experiences that are aligned to standards (i.e. New York, Common Core, School Library Skills, ISTE) and are beneficial for all. This method will enhance student learning through applications (i.e. Nearpod and Kahoot), incorporate 21st Century Skills (collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and communication) and infuse lessons with technology (i.e. Animoto, Prezi, VeeScope Green Screen, 3D Printers).

Shift Your Thinking: From Roadblocks to Opportunities
J’aime Pfeiffer 

This is a “hands-on” workshop that will first cover how our profession has undergone changes, what they are, and how to see the difference between changes beyond our control, and what is in our control and to take advantage of those. Using 6 major areas where changes have occurred, participants will look at goal-setting, consider roadblocks and opportunities, and develop an action plan or plans for their specific situations.

Techbytes: Advocacy Tech Toolkit
Heather Turner

Are you feeling stressed? Not sure what edtech to use for what? Confused on which the best tools are? Join me for a hands on workshop featuring new technology you can take back and begin using tomorrow. We will discuss ways to use technology to advocate and grow your program. Discover how you can get tech to work for you. Discover the latest educational technology including but not limited to Google Apps for Education, MailChimp, Canva, Smore, and so much more. Please bring a Chromebook, laptop, or other technology device to try some new tools!

Administration Workshops

ESSA Updates
Sara Kelly Johns, Nicole Waskie-Laura, and John Brock

School librarians and system directors can educate themselves about ESSA funding opportunities and actively represent their libraries’ interests at the grant writing planning table. Learn the school library ESSA provisions and make those connections to your school administrators now, so that your library programs become integral components of ESSA in your school.

Google Apps for Education in the School Library: Administration and Advocacy for the 21st-Century Librarian
Annarose Foley

A middle school Teacher-Librarian will share how she has used the 1:1 rollout of Chromebooks in her district to make the most out of Google Apps for Education (DRIVE, DOCS/SLIDES, CALENDAR, SITES, FORMS, CLASSROOM, and integration with NOODLETOOLS and GALE products) in her school library.

Fair Use for Educators in 2017: 5 Useful Tips from an Administrative and Legal Perspective
Jim Belair and Anne Dalton

This session, led by a SLS Director and lawyer that specializes in copyright, will present participants with various copyright scenarios and have them work through how they would answer them. Participants will gain a better understanding of Copyright Law and how we can help our school communities work through copyright challenges. There will also be time at the end of the session for Q & A.  Please feel free to send questions in advance to Jim Belair,

Mentoring Kicked Up a Notch
Doreen Bergman

The session will include an overview of the Mentors Across Borders program and the transition it has taken over the past two years. We will also include members of the program that are attending the conference to share their experiences. Participants will leave with a better understanding of how a strong and well planned mentor program can create a region wide professional learning community. They will have all they need to replicate and modify the program to meet the needs of their community.

Harnessing the Power of the SLMPE Rubric
Kerrie Burch and John Brock

New York State Education Department, the Northeast Comprehensive Center, and a K-12 school library media specialist have partnered to present on the SLMPE Rubric. New York State Education Department in partnership with the Northeast Comprehensive Center will provide an overview on the SLMPE Rubric and how it can be used. Following this part of the presentation, a New York State K-12 school library media specialist will share her experience using the SLMPE rubric to guide conversations with  school administrators and to advocate for students and the school library program. Furthermore, she will share how the SLMPE rubric has produced a series of positive outcomes in enhancing school library programs across the state.
New York State Education Department and the Northeast Comprehensive will end the presentation by sharing a resource, the SLMPE Rubric Web Pages, that was developed to support school librarians and administrators in their use of the SLMPE Rubric. Participants will learn about the history of the web pages, how members of NYLA/SSL contributed to the updating of the web pages, and how to use the web pages. The presentation will not only be informative, but participants will be provided an opportunity to consider how the SLMPE Rubric and web pages can be used to enhance their school library program.