Library Blog

First Grade Book Club (photos)

The first grade book club is based on the book Throw Your Tooth on the Roof: Tooth Traditions from Around the World by Selby Beeler.  Each student read and shared a fascinating tooth tradition from a different country.  We had a great discussion. Then they enjoyed reading a book about that country and delighted in sharing the details with each other.  Can you see the very loose tooth in the smile of one of the first graders?


Second Grade Book Club (photos)

The second group of the second grade book club has started.   We have compared the book Same, Same but Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw to other books with themes designed to Open Windows to Our World. This week students took their first books home to read and reflect how the book opens windows to our world.  I am looking forward to sharing ideas next week.


Library (photos)

As we returned from winter break, we shared our reading over break or how we are going to show our respectful, responsible, and kind behavior in the library.  It was a great time of reflection and review.  I always love to hear what books students are reading and how they plan to take care of the library and books they take home.  Each week I have been reminding students of the Six Flags Great America reading deadline, which is Wednesday, February 6th.  Hopefully, each student will meet the goal they set for his/her self.  All these snowy and cold days are great reading opportunities!

Monarch Voting is about three weeks away so we have been reading, discussing, and encouraging students to think about which Monarch book with get their vote.

Kindergarten has been showing great BAARK behavior as they are selecting books to check out from the shelves.  The browser carts are still available to them.  We toured and opened the fiction section first and then the nonfiction section.  They are choosing books of which they can see the cover.  I am reminding them to look inside the book and put it back if it is not the book they want.  So now they are selecting books from all over the library.  We have been reading and discussing the Monarch books during library.

In addition to reading and discussing the Monarch books in the library, first graders have focussed on the genre of the month, which is informational nonfiction.  We have toured part of the nonfiction section to highlight ideas for the students to check out.  

Second graders are finishing their landform research.  We plan to wrap up by discussing and reviewing why we cite sources during research and when to use an encyclopedia (print and online), a nonfiction book, and an atlas.   As teams finish their research, they are reading Monarch books.  I shared my hope that every second grader will be eligible to vote for their favorite Monarch book.  They have to have read or heard at least five of the twenty Monarch books to be able to vote.

You will see in the photos a great variety of reading that students enjoy.  Sometimes more than one student wants the same book and we encourage problem solving.  You will see some photos of rock, paper, scissors as students resolve the conflict in a fair way.  When needed, I facilitate.  I am always seeking ways to encourage positive and kind behavior as well as respectful and responsible actions.


Kindergarten Tech (photos)

Kindergarteners started the month by finishing their winter drawings in Wixie.  We then learned some new games from  to practice our letters and math skills.  From a computer skills perspective, students sometimes need to use the trackpad rather than the touch screen.  We continue to grow our expertise with both.  We are working our way to games that will celebrate counting to one hundred in honor of the 100th day of school.  Each week I typically teach three new games for the students to try and then have them select a game that they know if there is time.  Enjoy the photos that highlight their work.  Should you want to view your student’s Wixie creations, students can log in at any time.


Happy reading and I hope that your family is cozy warm,

Mrs. Heaser

Kindergarten Tech (photos)

December started with an Hour of Code celebration that led to the kindergartners coding with Scratch Jr. on the iPads.  This programming included a character, background, and commands such as move, jump, spin, repeat, shrink, grow, and turn invisible.  I modeled an underwater scene and students used their imaginations from there.  It was a great intuitive experience as you can tell from their excited smiles.  We then returned to our Chromebooks and typed sight words in text boxes in Wixie.  We ended our month with typing sentences about what we hope to do this winter.  We learned the space bar and period on the keyboard.  The Wixie spray can tool turned out beautiful snowflakes. As you can see in the photos, there are a lot of wishes for building snowmen this winter.

Library (photos)

We have had a lot of exciting activities and students in the library this month.  The Hour of Code led to many students checking out books about coding and computers.  Coding through ozobots was a fun activity for the kindergarten and first graders.  Ozobots follow the lines drawn on paper and understand short color codes in red, green, and blue.  The second graders started a research project about landforms.  They are responsible researchers citing sources as they find facts.  Their sources have been encyclopedias, the online encyclopedia Pebble Go, nonfiction books, and atlases.  Checking out Pop-Up books extended to the second graders, who have been waiting patiently for the first graders to have their first turns.

The Monarch books are a great variety of books just right for our students.  We are sampling them in read alouds and thinking about our favorite to get ready to vote.  I am reminding the students that the Monarch Award is a Children’s Choice award for K-3 students in the state of Illinois.  Monarch books are available at public libraries in addition to our school.

As always with choosing books in our library, the students have many wonderful and specific plans.  Our genre of the month in December was folklore, which are stories told long ago.  So long ago that we don’t know the author’s name and the stories are handed down over generations.  In addition to the Monarch books and author Carolyn Crimi books, biographies, nonfiction, picture books, folklore, chapter books, and everyone readers continue to be popular choices. 

Kindergarteners love to play the fiction/nonfiction game with their books after checkout.  It is great practice for them to think about their library books in terms of fiction and nonfiction.

The newest addition to our library collection is the Carolyn Crimi author visit book volume one.  Made in Shutterfly, it contains student work, information about the author’s books, photos, the author visit, and thank you notes.

Six Flags Reading

Hopefully, you received the bright yellow Six Flags reading log.  We are happy to offer this opportunity to our students for the first time this year.  As your student completes the reading goal of six hours or 360 minutes prior to February 6th, please return the reading log.  The reading should be for fun rather than a school assignment.  The Six Flags ticket should arrive in May.  Here is a link to the cover letter and reading log.  These winter days are a nice time to cuddle up with a good book.

Northbrook Public Library

There is a winter reading club at the Northbrook Public Library.  Please follow this link for details about the online sign-up and bingo card prizes.  The website also contains great book suggestions for students.

Should your family want to email me any photos of reading together, I am adding them to our display in the library.

Happy Reading!

Mrs. Heaser

Library (photos and author visit photos)

November in the library was one celebration of reading after another.  It was so nice to talk books with so many of you during the book fair.  I was fortunate to present about books for Opening Windows to Our World with the other District 27 librarians at the annual Association of Illinois School Librarian Educators conference.

Author Carolyn Crimi got our students thinking about finding story ideas everywhere including the calendar and many took that to heart and started writing when they got home.  We composed wonderful thank you notes to her.  In honor of Carolyn Crimi’s visit, we had Lucky Reader prize books to give to a few students in each class.  We encouraged family reading that led to some wonderful photos we are enjoying of past, present, and future Hickory Point students reading together.

Second graders enjoyed historical fiction while kindergarten and first graders began a folklore unit.  We were also busy with fiction and nonfiction activities.  First graders are learning about library organization (everyone readers, picture books, nonfiction, and biographies).  Second graders have begun learning about call numbers through Cynthia Rylant books.  Both grades drew maps of the library to help make these connections.

First graders are thrilled to start checking out pop-ups, PlayAways, and VOX books.  Kindergarteners have enjoyed nursery rhyme activities and songs and hearing Monarch books.


Kindergarten Tech (photos)

Kindergarten students spent time in Wixie drawing Thanksgiving turkeys, characters from their favorite Carolyn Crime book, and learned numbers and letter games.  They also started typing their names in text boxes in Wixie and a beginning keyboarding game.


I hope that see the joy of the students in the photos of the library, author visit, and computers.

Library (photos)

The students are so excited about author Carolyn Crimi’s visit on Tuesday, November 6th.  We have been reading her books, discussing them, and enjoying learning about her.  Her fiction stories have us chuckling. 

We will be celebrating reading all week long with Lucky Reader prize books, the book fair, and extra books to check out.

Reading Takes You Everywhere

November 15th is an Illinois Family Reading Night sponsored by Jesse White, State Librarian. We encourage District 27 families to read together sometime during that week. Photos of families reading together will be displayed in the school libraries. If you would like to share a photo of your family reading, email it to your school librarian(s). Here are some ideas of where, how, and what could you read.

Monarch Books

Students have been taking turns checking out the Monarch Award nominated books.  All the students have had their first turn and we are now taking second turns.

Genre of the Month

In October, the genre of the month was mystery. We encouraged students to check them out!  The genre for November is historical fiction--a nice tie in with the Thanksgiving holiday.

Please enjoy the photos from the library in October and see the student’s excitement.

Kindergarten Tech  (photos)

In October, Kindergarten students learned the Chrome books.  We started with typing usernames and passwords.  The combination of a touch screen and lower case letters on the keys has enabled students to make fast progress.  They also learned the backspace and shift keys.  We have started learning letter games in ABCYa and drawing tools in Wixie.  Students created pumpkins and sorted stickers with their five senses knowledge in Wixie.  Please enjoy the photos.

Library (photos)

Have we been busy in the library!  We have been BARRKing up a storm.  Students have been respectful, responsible, and kind in the library.  We have talked about taking care of library books and bringing them back for other students to enjoy reading.  Students have been eagerly checking out books that interest them and include the Monarch books and books by our author who will be visiting Hickory Point.  Please enjoy the photos.

First graders and second graders have had lessons in finding a “just right” book.  Please ask them about the five finger rule.

2019 Monarch Award nominated books

Each year students in grades K-3 in Illinois get to vote for their favorite Monarch book.  The Monarch Award is given to the book which receives the most votes.  This is truly a children’s choice award.  Voting takes place in February.  Every year twenty books are selected based on their appeal to K-3 students and a variety of fiction and nonfiction choices.  For more information, visit  Our students have started taking turns checking out the Monarch books.

Author Visit

We are fortunate to have author Carolyn Crimi coming to visit Hickory Point on Tuesday, November 6th. Soon the Book Bin flyer will go home with students.  If your family decides to send in a book written by Carolyn Crimi for her to sign, please include the form with your student(s)’ name and homeroom.  We will hold the books in the library until her visit.

It has been very exciting to share our reading experiences as students talk about all the great places they are finding the Monarch books and getting ready for the author visit.

Genre of the Month

In September, the genre of the month for second graders was realistic fiction.


Kindergarten Tech (photos)

Kindergarten students have learned many useful tips and apps on the iPads each week. We learned drawing, math, letters, and pattern matching apps.  The students were excited to learn them and then spend more time with them in the classroom.