March 2023

Volume 4.2

Welcome to the North Carolina School Library Media Association's Monthly newsletter!

Questions? Contact

In this edition:

NCSLMA Website



Jennifer Abel

NCSLMA President


President’s Corner March 2023

Happy March I hope everyone is having a great month so far! 

Shout outs:

Thank you to Lori Munroe and all of our Regional Directors for their hard work in putting on  this year's Winter Tuneup!! I want to also thank all of the amazing presenters who took time out of their busy schedules to share and collaborate with NC School Librarians. 

Check out this article in Education Week that references NC's Pitt County Schools

and Former NCSLMA President and Current Intellectual Freedom Chair April Dawkins. 

Have you wanted to volunteer with NCSLMA, but didn’t know where to start? We’re making it easy because we would love to have your talents supporting our organization! Check out the new Open Volunteer Positions on our website for information about current open positions. This list does change as positions become available, so make sure to check it often. If you see something that sounds like it would be a great fit, please consider volunteering. Not only will it help NCSLMA, you will also be able to show leadership at the state level on the DPI School Librarian Evaluation Tool.

Current Openings:

    • Membership Director
    • Treasurer
    • Website Director
    • National Board Coordinator
    • NCSLMA Store Coordinator
    • Advocacy Committee
    • Legislative Committee
    • Intellectual Freedom Committee

Upcoming events: 

  • If you weren’t able to view all of the Winter Tune-up events, no worries - the recordings will be available through March 31, 2023 for NCSLMA Members. 
  • The Call to Present at this year’s conference Magic Happens in Your Library is open, so make sure to get your proposals in by March 31st
  • Conference 2023 is looking for stories of the magic happening in your library. We want to share on our social media outlets the great things NC School Librarians are doing in our libraries. But we need your help for that. Please consider submitting a photo or video that showcases your and/or your library's magic. It can be small magic, big magic, or anything in between. Submissions will be taken until September 30, 2023.
  • The Page Turners Book club will meet March 18  to discuss this month's book “The Lincoln Highway” by Amor Towles.
  • March PM Brew Crew will meet on March 24th

Make sure to follow the behind-the-scenes conference blog for updates on this year's conference!

Kristy Sartain
Conference Co-Chair

I had the opportunity, along with several other NCSLMA members, to attend the latest NCCAT School Librarian offering. It was AMAZING. The setting, the fellowship, the food. All of it *chef's kiss*

We learned stuff, too. ;)

If you ever have the opportunity to attend and NCCAT session, I strongly encourage you to take it.  The sessions I have attended there have been some of the best PD I have ever taken and I always leave with more friends than I had before I got there. NCCAT truly takes care of its attendees. 

I am excited to let you know that NCSLMA will be represented at the upcoming Children's Literature Symposium at Appalachian State University. Registration is free for NC teachers and we encourage you to come out if you can, say hi to us, and check out some amazing Children's and YA authors!

Click here for more information and the link to register

I'm still writing the Conference Blog, although I missed a couple of weeks due to NCCAT. But I'll update next week, for sure. There's a ton of Conference stuff going on. I encourage you to check out the Conference Website to stay up to date. You'll probably be sick of hearing about the conference pretty soon, but we love you so we hope not! I'm REALLY excited to see how it's shaping up and I hope you are, too. Look for some big announcements in the next couple of weeks. 

I'll be at NCTIES on Thursday in the eSports arena if anyone is going. If you have time to say hi, please do. I'll be there from about 10-ish until 4 and I won't be able to wander the conference. I'll be sporting my NCSLMA shirt, though! Speaking of which, our store has a sale coming up. From March 4-12 and March 17-22, everything in the store will be 20% off. Check it out at 


(Announcements and Updates)


NCSLMA has a small blog on our website. If you would like to contribute to it, please send submissions to We're looking for news items, stories about your library, fun events you have had, etc. Pictures can be included and are welcomed. There are no minimum or maximum length requirements. Share some of the great things going on in your library!

Share Your Magic!

The Conference PR Team wants to hear from you! Share the magic that is happening in your library so we can tell the world! Visit and fill out the form with your story.

Call to Present!

The Call to Present for Conference 2023 is open! Grab your grimoire to find the best spells, er, sessions you have that you want to share with others. We look forward to seeing those magical session titles!
Submit your proposal here:

NC Member Spotlights

Highlighting the hard work of our North Carolina librarians.

Read and Ride by Susan Varner

Read and Ride

Susan Varner

Media Coordinator at Highland Middle School

Using a combination of grant money and PTO donations, the Highland Middle School Media Center purchased 8 exercise bikes. The only rule for the bikes is that  students must have reading materials when riding. The bikes have been a HUGE hit and students Read & Ride as often as possible. Pictured above is a student rider with teacher Billy Booth looking on. 

Café Stories: Connecting Stories to Social Emotional Learning

Café Stories: Connecting Stories to Social Emotional Learning  

Media Coordinator - Swansboro Elementary School 


Each year, our Guidance Counselor at SBES celebrates students each month who have exemplified a Social Emotional Skill. For example, in February the skill was Cooperation. Teachers sent in a blurb about a student in their class who practiced Cooperation skills that month and our Counselor shares a slideshow with our parents and community. This is aligned with our school’s Strategic Plan and the importance of students having these skills to be future-ready learners and have a positive impact on their local and global community. 

To support this goal, I decided to curate and share books that relate to each month’s Social Emotional Skill at the beginning of the month. This helps create awareness of the month’s skill in advance and integrate resources to discuss that month’s SEL skill, allowing them to teach and share resources related to that skill. Our Cooperation Resources are linked here:  

This led me to create Café Stories, a monthly book box that I leave on the Teacher Table in the Cafeteria. Staff can view the books during their lunchtime and can take them to the classroom to read to their students, if they choose. I create an activity sheet for each book with information about the author, pre-reading questions, video links, and activity links.  

This month, I selected several books that relate to the theme of Cooperation. Books like Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up by Sitting Down by Andrea Davis Pinkney, Seven Blind Mice by Ed Young, and Drawn Together by Minh Le all tell a story about how characters work together to solve a problem or communicate. In each book, I print out a copy of possible activities and share the link with teachers through email. 

Eyes on the Prize by Melissa A. Waring

Eyes on the Prize

Melissa A. Waring

Librarian- Corinth Holders Elementary School, Johnston County Schools

 I have started a study guide initiative using google slides with our 3rd-5th graders. Each week when they come to the library, we open our google slides and work on them together. We include vocabulary from class. Each week we look up and add the definition and, if applicable, a picture of the word. For example anemometer, we add the definition and then add an image. This study guide is not a requirement but more of a well-rounded assignment. Working on the EOG study guide allows me, as the librarian, to help them navigate a computer and do research. I am also collaborating with the teachers using vocabulary and topics they are working on in class.

What does this have to do with eyes on the prize? I was figuring out how to keep the student continuously engaged in this assignment, so we created a Life Goals Slide to keep them on target. On that slide, they had to include five life goals. One of the third graders said he wanted to play for the Vikings; I took this opportunity to explain to the students that, yes, that is a good goal; however, the subsequent goals need to be how he will get there—for example, playing for a rec league, playing for a high school, and having an exercise routine to help with muscle growth and memory. As with any goal, there are always obstacles. I decided that it would be a fun exercise to give the students shields and have them put their goal on the inside facing them, and then have the other students throw foam balls at them from buckets labeled excuses, self-doubt, procrastination, and friends. While the students had their shields and were in the middle of the "storm," I asked them to keep their eyes on the prize (goal). I asked the school counselor to come in and watch the students and then talk to them about the many obstacles they will face on the road to achieving their goals. This experience was fun for the students and gave us much to discuss. 

A Fresh Way To Reach Goals: EC Green Screen Collaboration is Fun for ALL

by Jessica Dupree

A Fresh Way To Reach Goals: EC Green Screen Collaboration is Fun for ALL

Jessica Dupree

Media Coordinator - Marvin Ridge Middle School 

As the Marvin Ridge Middle School’s video recording studio has evolved, collaboration opportunities with general education teachers have expanded. Students love using green screen as part of projects because it gives them a chance to add creative flair and personalization.  There are straightforward applications to incorporate green screen recording into standard curricular areas such as Language Arts.  A recent conversation in passing with one of our EC teachers snowballed into an ongoing collaborative opportunity that has proven highly engaging for students and a ton of fun for everyone.  Together, we crafted an idea to bring the magic of green screen to their programming;  students would use green screen to practice speech and social IEP goals.

The first gathering began with students discussing traits of strong anchors and identifying what aspects of their behavior and speech make them more enjoyable to watch.  Our speech therapist and EC teacher directed the conversation to highlight specific areas to compliment both speech and social IEP goals, such as including banter, making eye contact in conversation, speaking clearly and slowly, and smiling during news delivery.  From there, we watched and applied these conversation bullet points to that day’s school broadcast, reinforcing and adding to our list of traits and behaviors that we thought contributed to a strong newscaster.   

After a quick discussion of the mechanics of our daily broadcast, students moved into the news studio, where they worked in collaborative pairs to read through the same news script they had just watched. Their EC and speech therapist paired students with similar IEP goals, and provided coaching before and after recording.  I shared the recordings with the EC teacher and Speech Therapist, and they played each group’s recording in class, giving students the opportunity to critique themselves and offer support and encouragement for one another. 

The students will return weekly, which will allow students to identify their own improvements, as well as new goals for the next week’s broadcast.  Teachers can also monitor student growth weekly.  Our hope is that the feedback will build confidence and allow students to add creative, personal elements to their broadcasts. Expansion ideas include having students write their own scripts and going out into the school to create collaborative recorded news segments. 

We are excited to continue this collaboration, and I am currently planning to extend it beyond Speech Therapy.  I am currently working on a collaboration with one of our separate setting EC teachers to guide students through various social settings and scenarios using green screen.  There are so many fun and engaging ways to incorporate green screen for the growth of ALL students!

NCSLMA Sections

Director: Faith Huff

Director: Lucy Wilcox

Awards, Grants, Scholarships
Director: Robin Rhodes

AASL Delegates

Laura Aldridge & Sarah Justice

Book Programs
Director: Stacy Hersey

Director: Vacant

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Michelle Burton & Ness Shortley

Regional Directors:
Lead: Lori Munroe

Social Media
Director: Alicia Luke

Director: Vacant


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Would you like to contribute to the next NCSLMA News & Notes?

We want to hear from you! Do you have an upcoming multi-school or district event, were you recognized in some way, are you involved in the coolest collaboration, or did you contribute in some other spectacular way that shows the value of school libraries and librarians? We know you did! So we want to share the fabulous things school librarians are doing across the state! Please submit links to articles, published materials, and/or graphics to Kenisha Smith ( Materials should be "copy and paste" ready. Submissions will be edited and published at the discretion of the NCSLMA News & Updates Editorial Team.

Submission Guidelines Document

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