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SLS Newsletter June 2019: Welcome


Contact Information


131 N. Midland Avenue, Nyack, New York   10960     (845) 348-3500 ext. 3596   fax  348-3559

Summer vacation is nearly here and the final weeks of school are hectic.  Please be sure to complete and return your interlibrary loan stats, member update, annual evaluation and member plan.  These documents provide important data for the annual report which is submitted to the Division of Library Development. Use this link to access the annual evaluation on survey monkey

Explore New York 2019

The New York State Library is pleased to announce that the 2019 Explore New York recreational reading lists and bookmarks for children and teens are now available at The reading lists for four different age/grade levels are designed to help libraries and schools promote New York State-related recreational summer reading and are available for download and printing.

These recreational reading lists are librarian-selected titles that celebrate the history, culture, and diversity of New York State.  The lists have been designed by the New York State Library in partnership with the New York State Library Association Youth Services Section and Section of School Librarians.

The accompanying bookmarks are created each year by the New York State Library and designed by the New York State Museum specifically for Summer Reading at New York Libraries.  The bookmarks serve as companions to the four Explore New York reading lists and include the 2019 CSLP summer reading graphics to illustrate this year’s space and science theme and the slogan of “A Universe of Stories.” The bookmarks are available for printing with titles already included, as well as in template form so that schools and libraries can add their own selection of books.

Summer Reading at New York Libraries is funded through the Federal Library Services and Technology Act, with funds awarded to the New York State Library by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services.  The New York State Library is a program of the Office of Cultural Education in the New York State Education Department.


"The Digital Public Library of America empowers people to learn, grow, and contribute to a diverse and better-functioning society. We do this by maximizing public access to our shared history, culture, and knowledge."

DPLA offers photographs, books, maps, news footage, oral histories, personal letters, museum objects, artwork, government documents,ebooks and  more,  free and available in digital format. To explore the ebook content, from the main DP.LA page select "PRO" and then scroll down to ebooks.  You will also find them in the section labeled "Education".  Continue to learn more.


Summer Reading with myON


The New York State Education Department and the New York State Library are partnering with 1,100 public libraries and neighborhood branches statewide to launch the 2019 Summer Reading at New York Libraries program, Commissioner MaryEllen Elia announced. The free, annual program gives children the opportunity to access the vast resources of New York’s public libraries to support their summer reading.

“Public libraries are cornerstones of communities – families rely on libraries to provide free educational resources and programs for their children, especially during the summer when school is out of session,” said Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa. “More than 2.4 million students participated in the program last year and we hope to grow that number this summer by encouraging parents, caregivers and teachers to bring their children and students to the library and participate in a free summer reading program.”

“It’s so important for children to continue learning during the summer and our summer reading program helps them stay engaged and prevent the summer slide,” said State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia. “Whether it’s print books, e-books or audio books, there’s something for everyone to read and enjoy at their local library. I encourage children and families to visit their local library and sign up for a summertime of free reading, learning and fun.”

This year’s summer reading program slogan is “A Universe of Stories”. Children and teens participating in the program receive book recommendations and engage in creative and fun educational activities at their local libraries. Library staff help children select reading materials and provide literacy-enhancing programs such as storytelling, music, creative arts and performances. At the end of the program, participants receive formal recognition and celebrate their summer reading goals and achievements at special public library events.

NYSED and the State Library partner with various organizations such as the New York State Senate and Assembly, Hunger Solutions New York, the New York State Reading Association, the School Library Systems Association of New York State, 4-H and the New York Council for the Humanities to bring summer reading to communities throughout the state. For the second year, NYSED is partnering with myON by Renaissance to provide thousands of enhanced digital books to children from birth to 12th grade and their families all around the state. Readers can log into myON via one statewide login to access a digital library of more than 6,000 e-books using any web-enabled device. There’s an option to download up to 20 books at a time through a free app for reading offline, as well as resources and tips for parents and educators, including on-demand videos, tip sheets, strategies and more to support meaningful family literacy experiences. This access to free digital children’s books is available for New York state students and families through September 30.

In addition to free access to the myON by Renaissance digital library, local libraries offer families free access to thousands of age-appropriate e-books with a local library card.  Families with young children can also access fun daily reading activities all summer – including songs, poems, crafts, PBS videos and a free E-book of the day – with the State Library’s DayByDayNY online early literacy calendar (also available in Spanish).

State Senator Shelley B. Mayer, Chair of the Education Committee, said, “Summer reading is essential for students to retain the academic skills learned in the previous school year, to avoid the ‘summer slide,’ and to find joy in books and texts. I am pleased to support NYSL & NYSED’s Summer Reading Program to help our students thrive in school year after year. In so many of our towns and cities, our public libraries are community hubs for residents of all ages, and one of my top priorities is to ensure libraries have the necessary resources to offer the programs their communities need. The Summer Reading Program brings children and families to our local libraries to read books and explore ideas that shape and expand young minds.”


Mission Statement

The mission of the Rockland BOCES School Library System is to serve the school libraries by supporting all library related services.  The school library system fosters the professional growth of county librarians and facilitates progress of staff and students towards achieving the educational goals defined by New York State.

Professional Development


Coding and Robotics X, September 26, 2019

Fall Into Books 21st Annual Children's and Teen Literature Conference, October 25, 2019

SLSCon at Superintendent's Conference Day, November 5, 2019 

Coding and Robotics XI, December 12, 2019

36th Annual Rockland Read-In, February 14, 2020 (snow date February 28, 2020)

Coding and Robotics XII, March 12, 2020

Superintendent's Conference Day, March 20, 2020

Fall Into Books 22nd Annual Children's and Teen Literature Conference, October 14, 2020

Fall Into Books 2019

Celebrating its 21st year, the annual Fall Into Books Conference is set to take place on October  25, 2019.  It will be held at the Best Western Plus Kingston.  Registration materials have been sent to each librarian in the system.   Be sure to register early if you plan to attend, and read your assigned books!   The morning keynote will feature librarians Lucy Miller, Jaclyn Heeney and Melinda Grey discussing, "Auditing Your Library Collection for Diversity".  Our author speaker is Margaret Peterson Haddix.   Read about Margaret below and then enjoy listening to her read from one of her books.

Fall into Books 2019 Keynote Author:Margaret Peterson Haddix

Margaret Peterson Haddix's Greystone Secrets #1: The Strangers
by Harper Collins
Mar 22, 2019 | Filed in People
The New York Times bestselling author's new series about family, friendship, and intrigue has young readers excited. Student Library Journal takes a closer look at the author and her work.


How did you become an author and tell us a bit about what motivates you to create new stories?

I was the quintessential bookworm kid who fell in love with other people’s stories and imagination. In college, I had two seemingly impractical majors--creative writing and history—as well as a third one, journalism, that struck me as the likeliest way I could earn a living wage by writing. So I started out working for newspapers and writing fiction on the side. I was very, very lucky: This strategy actually worked. Journalism proved to be a great springboard into writing books. And I am always motivated by stories that make me wonder, “What if?” and “Why?” A lot of times I am just telling stories that would have fascinated me as a kid.  continue



Professional Development Survey

Please use the link below to share your ideas for professional development workshops in 2019-2020.  Thank you.

Professional Development - The Year in Review

System members had many exciting opportunities for professional development in 2018-2019.  The year began with Paige Jaeger sharing her expertise in a full day program entitled, " Understanding &  Embracing the New AASL School Library Standards".  She was able to pull out the key elements of the new standards to make it easier to understand and implement.  The November Superintendent's Conference Day, provided participants with an "Introduction to Culturally Responsive Libraries" and "What's Your Media Diet?  Brush Up on Your Digital Literacy Skills with Teaching Tolerance".  In "Introduction to Culturally Responsive Libraries", staff from HV RBERN (Hudson Valley Regional Bilingual Education Resource Network), introduced librarians to the concept of cultural responsiveness and their role as instructional partners with the school community.  Librarians were given strategies and resources to help evaluate and create culturally responsive libraries. "What's Your Media Diet" provided librarians with the five steps to a balanced media diet and how to integrate these skills into their teaching to support digital and civic literacy as students create their own online content.  At the March Superintendent's Conference Day, librarians had the opportunity to participate in a tech petting zoo and gain hands on experience with materials to support coding and robotics in the library.   They also had an opportunity to learn about free resources available from the National Library of Medicine, Medline Plus and the National Institutes of Health.  The coding and robotics cohort continued to hone their skills and bring resources back to their students including Arduinos, Snap Circuits, Let's Start Coding kits and Root.

"How Dare the Sun Rise"

Fall Into Books 2018 was held on October 24, 2018 at the Crestview Conference Center in West Nyack.  Participants were held spellbound as keynote author Sandra Uwiringiyimana spoke about her experiences during the slaughter of 166 people in a U.N. refugee camp in Burundi.  She describes this experience in her book, How Dare the Sun Rise.  Hear more from Sandra in the short video below.  For a more in depth account of her experience, continue here.


Raul Colon

Plans for Fall Into Books 2020 are underway.  It will be held on Wednesday, October 14, 2020 at the Crestview Conference Center in West Nyack.  The keynote author/illustrator is Raul Colon.  He is the author/illustrator of many books including  Imagine and Tomas and the Library Lady.  This link will bring you to a short presentation of Imagine.

 Image result for raul colonImage result for raul colon

Thank you


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