Spooky Books Trivia

It’s the most wonderful season of the year . . . Halloween . . . which means it’s time for the media center’s annual Spooky Books Trivia! Mrs. Baker will present trivia questions based upon the spooky books featured throughout October. Students are encouraged to submit their answers for chances to win awesome prizes! Be sure to tune into the morning news for all the details! And, of course, visit the media center to get in the Halloween spirit! Check out a fun read, and snap a selfie in the Getting Spooky Photo Booth.

Inventory is On!

Spring is as busy a time as ever in the Durham Media Center. In addition to the daily operations of the media center, which include teaching students, collaborating with teachers, and circulating materials (among countless other duties and responsibilities), the month of April marks the beginning of the media center’s annual inventory during which time over 18,000 print and audiovisual materials will be located and scanned. Media Center inventory is required by board policy (Admin Rule IJK) and calls for heightened attention to the library’s collection of materials. To follow are the direct and indirect benefits of inventory for students and staff:

Inventory Makes our Collection More Accessible

  • Identifying lost items makes Destiny catalog searches more accurate.
  • Adding uncataloged items makes them accessible through Destiny.
  • Finding mis-shelved items makes them available again.

Inventory Makes Our Collection Better

  • Identifying lost items lets us know what replacement items need to be purchased.
  • Identifying patterns of loss can suggest changes that need to be made in terms of purchasing, circulation policies, patron privacy, etc.
  • Handling each item helps identify copies that need to be discarded or re-cataloged and makes us more familiar with our collection.

Inventory Helps Build Trust and Support for Our Program

  • Maintaining accurate records of our holdings allows us to show you how much we value the resources within the DMC.
  • Responsible use of past funding helps ensure future funding! (“Destiny Inventory Guide: Conducting a Library Media Collection Inventory”)

The process of adding new, relevant materials to the collection and removing or “weeding” outdated, unused items from the collection is a continual process in the DMC, but during inventory, attention is concentrated on this task. A valuable collection is, of course, one that adapts along with the needs of its patrons and is filled with items that are circulated frequently. Our library collection and media center space are in constant evolution as we adapt to patrons needs. We work diligently to make Durham’s Media Center an invaluable asset to all who use it. Thanks so much for your loyal and energetic support of our DMC program goals and initiatives as they help set the tone for our school environment and directly impact the achievement of our students.

“Destiny Inventory Guide: Conducting a Library Media Collection Inventory.” Library Media Education. Library Media Education Department, Cobb

County School District, n.d. Web. 23 Apr 2014. <http://www.cobbk12.org/librarymedia/Destiny/Inventory/CCSD_Destiny_Inventory_Guide.pdf>.

During annual inventory, Mrs. Webb scans every single item in the media center to verify its location.

During annual inventory, Mrs. Webb scans every single item in the media center to verify its location.

8th Grade Drama Students Defy Stereotypes

Beginning Monday, February 22nd, Drama and Broadcast teacher Mrs. Zwolle and Media Specialist Mrs. Baker are teaming up to lead 8th grade Drama students through a study of stereotypes in an effort to gain understanding of the role stereotypes play in dramatic production. Mrs. Baker will guide students through a variety of  activities focusing on stereotypes present in society. Students will turn their reflection inward to explore how they might personally be typecast by others. In opposition to those labels, they will write poems titled Just Because with the goal of debunking their stereotype. Students will then use Vocaroo to record audio recitations of their poems which they will also turn into QR codes. Their efforts will be on display in the main hallway so that others may learn from their stories. Students will also perform their poems orally in class.

For daily activities, check out the PowerPoint utilized to gather the daily lessons: Defying Stereotypes PowerPoint

HEY CLASS! If you’d like to learn more about former UGA, and prospective NFL, football player Malcolm Mitchell, who himself defies stereotypes, check out the following additional resources: (F.Y.I. These videos filter through YouTube and will be blocked while on campus. Hopefully your learning and interest extend beyond our school walls.) Swing by the media center to chat with me about how remarkable this young man is.)

Malcolm Mitchell Speaks to Usher’s New Look Foundation

Malcolm Mitchell High School Highlights

Malcolm Mitchell UGA Freshman Highlights

NFL Combine Ranking 2016

Here are our final products on display in the main hallway:

IMG_1310 IMG_1309

Defying Stereotypes

Happy Holidays from the DMC!

The evolution of the DMC continues through the holiday season. New books and resources are added each week, so be sure to stop by often. Check out some of the fun holiday decor gracing our spaces this December.

Cozy up by the fire and our book tree and enjoy a good read this holiday season!

Cozy up by the fire and our book tree, and enjoy a good read this holiday season.

Cozy up with a good book!

This jolly Santa was created by Media Paraprofessional Mrs. Webb’s father who was an art teacher in Scotland where he still resides.

Drama Students Defying Stereotypes

Drama and Broadcast teacher Mrs. Zwolle and Media Specialist Mrs. Baker recently teamed up to lead 8th grade Drama students through a study of stereotypes based upon ethnicity, gender, locality, and occupation in an effort to gain understanding of the role stereotypes play in dramatic production. Students reflected upon how they might personally be typecast within society. In opposition to those labels, they wrote poems modeling Latino feminist Ana Castillo’s “We Would Like You to Know” in which she dispels Latino prejudices. Students presented their poems in class, and then used Vocaroo to record audio recitations of their poems which they turned into QR codes. For additional resources on this lesson, check the related blog posts below.

October Festivities


          October was a fun-filled month of festivities and fall celebration in the Durham Media Center. Early in the month, volunteer Beverly Powers offered her talents to create a chalk art backdrop for the Spooky Books Photo Booth. The artwork added to the fun of checking out books from October’s “Spooky Books” display which featured classic authors like Edgar Allan Poe, Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker and more contemporary favorites like R.L. Stine and Alvin Schwartz. During the week of Halloween, trivia questions about several of the featured titles were presented to students via the morning news. Five correct answers were drawn daily, and those lucky students won brand new paperback books that the media center had earned from last spring’s Scholastic Book Fair sales.  

          In addition to the festive activities in the media center, Media Specialist Erin Baker collaborated with classroom teachers in Reading, English/Language Arts, Science, Social Studies, and Special Education to bring the following lessons to Durham students: Science Fiction Genre Journey, Biomes Research Project using Cobb Digital Library, The Ins and Outs of Destiny, and Social Studies Current Events in Europe. For faculty and staff, Mrs. Baker offered an early morning training opportunity on Destiny and Cobb Digital Library that was geared specifically to teachers’ classroom instructional needs. Also during the month of October, select students were honored at a Breakfast of Champions. Be sure to check out the hallway bulletin board display, created by Mrs. Baker and Mrs. Webb, highlighting many of those honorees. Lastly, student members of the Library Media Committee had their first meeting and began work on several different library promotional projects they will be working on over the next several weeks. The group is a collection of 35 awesome Durham students from across grade levels who will definitely impact the success of Durham’s library media program this year.

          Whew! What a month! There’s no telling what November holds . . . .  Did somebody say Mockingjay?

Photo Booth Fun!

Photo Booth Fun!


6th Grade Social Studies: Current Events Around the World

Durham Media Center is collaborating with Mrs. Meder’s, Mrs. Forester’s,  Mrs. Clements’, and Mrs. Bitler’s 6th grade Social Studies students on their Current Events Research Project. For the first article review, we will concentrate on locating magazine and news articles on current events (within the last 3 months) in Europe. Mrs. Baker will be guiding students through the Cobb Digital Library via a Current Event Pathfinder and will teach students how to locate current issues within the Opposing Viewpoints in Context database.  Assignment guidelines have been established by individual teachers and are posted within their blogs.

Essential Questions: At the end of the day with Mrs. Baker, students should be able to answer the following Essential Questions:

1. How do we access current events within Cobb Digital Library?

2. Why do we access current events within Cobb Digital Library?

For this assignment, students will need the following:

1. Use the Current Event Pathfinder to guide you step-by-step through your Cobb Digital Library research.

2.  Use the graphic organizer, Extra! Extra! Read All About It! , to help guide your note-taking from the current issue article you select.

3. Be sure you have the assignment guidelines shared by your classroom teacher which also include the assignment rubric.



Tales of Great Books: Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

In honor of “The Master of Horror,” Edgar Allan Poe, the media center is collaborating with Reading and Language Arts teachers to help students better understand the impact Poe’s body of work (Do you know his writing spans a variety of genres?) has had on American Literature. Use Mrs. Baker’s Edgar Allan Poe Video Guide while viewing Georgia Public Broadcasting’s Great Books: Tales of Edgar Allan Poe , with an introduction by Mrs. Baker, to assist in your understanding of the major points within the video segment.

Teachers may also wish to utilize Great Books Tales of Edgar Allan Poe Teacher’s Guide provided by Georgia Public Broadcasting to help lead students through their individualized, grade level appropriate standards.

Also, be sure to take advantage of the myriad print and digital resources on Poe that are available in Durham’s Media Center. Many are currently featured on the “Spooky Books” display, but be sure to search Poe in Destiny to see all the super cool items available for check out.


Great Books: Tales of Edgar Allan Poe Discovery Education, 2003 . Full Video.
Discovery Education. Web. 27 October 2014. <http://www.discoveryeducation.com/>.

Portrait of Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849). Fine Art. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 23 Oct 2014.