TASL Member Brags

by Brandi Hartsell

One of our favorite regular features on TASL Talks is our Member Brags. We love hearing about the amazing things happening in school libraries across Tennessee. You may have recently seen a call for submissions via your area representative and/or on social media. We hope to make this feature a more regular occurrence, but to do so, we need you to reach out and tell us your stories! You will find a link below that you can use for submissions, but first let’s take a look at some great school library happenings in Tennessee!

Member Brags

Emily Squires from Holston Middle School (Shelby County Region) shared with us about her great experience attending a professional workshop about teaching women’s suffrage through inquiry.

IMG_0834 copy - Emily Squires
“As part of the 100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment, I attended the Battle for the Ballot: An Inquiry Based Workshop on Woman Suffrage in Tennessee. I brought back some great resources. My 6th and 7th grade students spent 2 days in the library learning about the role Tennessee played in ratifying the 19th Amendment. We even had escape box activities that groups had to solve. We also checked out the Battle of the Ballot Trunks from the Tennessee State Library and Museum. There are so many great resources that are state is providing for free so check it out!”

Heather Palmer from Dogwood Elementary School (Knox County Region) recently received a TeacherPreneur grant from Greater Community Schools for a Trauma Informed Library Initiative (TILI) project.

thumbnail_IMG_9924 - HEATHER PALMER
The grant has several components. The first is trauma and self care literature for students and staff. We will have informative books on trauma situations, at multiple levels, as well as strategy books for mindfulness and self care. The staff and student collections will be separate. The student ones will be on rotation in a reading space, where students can learn about things even if it is not their own issue, and where I have also acquired more soft seating and pillows for free reading time. This area will also include a book cover station so students can create covers for books once checked out, in case they don’t want the title of their book obvious. The third part is creating backpack kits that families can check out for book therapy. These kits will have a book, ideas to lead families through discussions, and journaling and activity materials to use. My counselor will be helping with this part by providing  recommendations. 

Janet Getz from West Valley Middle School (Knox County Region) just hosted her first Literacy Night.

IMG_20200312_191116 - JANET GETZ
Brianna Mason, Miss Tennessee, came and read stories about famous women. We had eight opportunities to experience various types of literacy through art, poetry, reviews about great reads, mathematical puzzles, giant floor map fun, skits, and storytellers. We were able to give all of our families free books, games and bookmarks. It was a small but delightful gathering with attendees ranging from young children to grandparents. There was an overwhelmingly positive response and a whole hearted push for a follow-up next year.

Share Your Success

We love featuring TASL members and the wonderful things you are doing in your libraries. Please share with us your successes, no win is too small! Did you teach a great lesson? Attend an awesome PD session? Submit your story here.

Area Representatives

Below is a current list of our area reps. Make sure you reach out to them if you need help, want to celebrate, or just have a question! They are here for each of you!

Buffalo River Region
Angela Secrest
Clinch River Region
Cathy Sanders
Davidson County Region
Katelyn Jernigan
Falling Water River Region
Lee Houston
Hamilton County Region
Melanie Collins
Hatchie River Region
Sherry Copeland
Holston River Region
Johnnie Sue Hawley
Knox County Region
Raina Scoggins
Obion River Region
Sandi Walden
Ocoee River Region
Martha Harris
Red River Region
Anita Fentress
Shelby County Region
Emily Squires
Stones River Region
Liz Hicks

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