The Lower School Library collection houses close to 15,000 items. The Fiction and Everybody (picture book) sections are fresh and updated with current children’s literature. The non-fiction section has a variety of sources for class assignments and for children to explore new facts and concepts. We strive to have an average copyright date in each of the 10 numbered Dewey sections to be no older than 5 years from the current date.
The CCES Lower School has an open library; all students may visit any time during the week, as often as they would like, to exchange their books. Classes also schedule time in the library.
The Lower School Library Team
Library topics are integrated into classroom studies. Students learn about dictionaries, encyclopedias, and atlases as part of their studies.
Students experience both fiction and non-fiction texts with a focus on reading for enjoyment and to glean knowledge. Reference materials such as dictionaries and encyclopedias are used to build research skills. Specific authors are introduced with an emphasis on writing techniques and use of illustrations.
Formal research begins in second grade. The students use their non-fiction reading strategies to answer questions and take notes on what they read using the Trash ‘N Treasure method of note taking. Second graders use these skills when researching their animals for the ecosystems research as well as their planets for the solar system research. The entire research process is demonstrated to the second graders using the Independent Investigation Method (IIM) and the Super3 (three steps to successful research). The students research (brainstorming research questions, taking notes by highlighting and then writing treasure words, organizing those notes, writing sentences/paragraphs from those notes) a particular habitat, an animal, and a planet using the IIM and Super3. During the research, the students are reminded how to use encyclopedias, tables of content, and indices to help them with their research.
Second graders also learn how to quickly and easily find words in the dictionary by playing the Mystery Word Game. They then use this knowledge to find words in a thesaurus, a resource many second graders will hopefully use more often to enhance their word choices in their writings.The second graders learn how to use the Everybody and Fiction sections of the library independently, relying on call numbers to help them find books on the shelves. Students are also taught how to use the online library catalog.
Formal research continues in third grade. Students continue to take notes using the Trash N’ Treasure method learned in second grade, but this year the emphasis is on using synonyms for “treasure words,” thus allowing students to truly put notes in their own words.
In addition, they learn how to highlight important information in articles.During third grade, the entire research process is once again demonstrated using the Independent Investigation Method (IIM) and the Big 6 (six steps to successful research). Research projects include research on a famous artist, an entrepreneur/inventor, a human body system, and a natural disaster.
Fourth GradeFormal research continues in fourth grade. They continue to take notes using the Trash N’ Treasure method that they learned in second and third grades, with continuing emphasis on using synonyms for “treasure words,” thus allowing students to truly put notes in their own words. This year, they are allowed to use note cards for note taking. As in previous years, the entire research process is again demonstrated to the fourth graders using the Independent Investigation Method (IIM) and the Big 6 (six steps to successful research). The students research (brainstorming research questions, taking notes, organizing those notes, writing sentences/paragraphs from those notes) famous explorers, Revolutionary War notables, a type of communication, and their exhibition topic.
Primers check out 2 library books per week after Christmas break (1 book before Christmas break), one they can read to a parent and one a parent can read to them. They usually return the books the following week to check out 2 more books. Children in grades 1-4 may take out up to 2 books or magazines at a time and may have up to 4 books/magazines out under their names. Books are due 2 weeks from the checkout date. Overdue books are not fined, but children may not check out until overdue books are cleared. Overdue notices are sent home once a week with students. Notices and charge slips will be given for any books considered lost, and once the charge slips are signed and returned, the students’ accounts will be charged for the lost books. (Note: Books that are 2 months overdue are automatically marked as lost and charged to the students’ accounts.) Lost and paid books that are found and returned are credited to the accounts. Parents with questions or concerns are encouraged to call the library office at 864.299.1522 x1260 or e-mail us at Stephensb@cces.org or email@example.com.
The school book fair is an opportunity for children to build home libraries with current books, while assisting our school library financially. A committee of parent volunteers working with the library staff publicizes and operates the fair. Volunteering for the book fair is a wonderful way to get to know other parents and children. A Barnes and Noble Book Fair is held in late October/early November each year, and each class has a scheduled time to attend. Parents are invited to attend the fair at their children’s scheduled times to view the books with them.
To encourage appreciation of literature, the Lower School Library sponsors bi-annual author or illustrator visits. The visits usually occur in the late winter or spring, and parents are invited to attend. Prior to the event, families are given the opportunity to purchase autographed books for home libraries. Parents will receive publicity and ordering information prior to the event.