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August 2014, Volume 6, Issue 6

Continuing Education Alert

Check Your Calendars!!

One Book SD

Teen Blogging Contest
Deadline: August 1, 2014

SDLA Branch Out
August 7, 2014

Library Card Sign-up Month
September 2014

ALSC National Institute
September 18-20, 2014

Banned Books Week
September 21-27, 2014

Banned Websites Awareness Day
September 24, 2014

SDLA Annual Conference
October 1-3, 2014

SDLA Legislative Day
January 22, 2014

Featured e-Resources of the Month
New e-resources' features made available

School Libraries


Newest School Library Survey data now available

Data collected in the 2013-2014 School Library Survey is now available. A quick overview reports a total of 371 libraries in public districts, nonpublic, tribal/BIE and state special systems serving 93% of K-12 students. Although this total is less than the total number of libraries reported in 2012-2013, circulation of materials shows close to a 500,000 item increase. Ebooks account for 3% of the 5,540,115 item total.

Other areas showing a significant increase include BYOD, or student use of their own devices, up to 43.9% from 35.8% in the previous year. The use of tablet devices such as iPads has risen to 38% from 33.5%. School library use of social media tools is also increasing steadily.

Budgets and certified staffing are two areas which continue to decrease and impact the number of students who receive information literacy instruction.

School districts and systems may access their data via the Counting Opinions platform. Go to and use the same district login and password you used to enter your data last spring. Contact Marta Stirling or Joan Upell if you need a reminder of that information.

Data Coordinator, Shawn Behrends, has saved some basic reports for you to use or you can create new ones of your own. All data since the 2009-2010 school year is included and can be used for comparisons. If you find you need a bit more guidance, we'll be offering a webinar soon. Also, watch for a complete summary in the 2014 School Data Digest - out late this fall.


Digital Citizenship is focus of third annual School Library Boot Camp

The third annual School Library Boot Camp was held on the campus of the University of South Dakota on July 20-23. Classes centered on the theme "ShaZam! The 4Cs in the 21st Century School Library." School librarians, teachers and paraprofessionals from across the state were critical thinkers as they communicated, collaborated and created projects based on the Common Core State Standards and best digital practices.

The Boot Camp projects will be implemented during the 2014-2015 school year for students, staff and parents. Projects cover a variety of topics and focus on information literacy and digital citizenship for all ages. Research shows that an effective 21st Century school library program leads students toward greater achievement.

The 28 Boot Camp attendees came from schools in the communities of Aberdeen, Bison, Centerville, Freeman, Hayti, Hot Springs, Huron, Madison, Miller, Pierre, Rapid City, Sioux Falls, Stephan, Sturgis, Vermillion, Winner and Yankton.

Coordinated by the State Library in conjunction with USD for 2014, Boot Camp is a two credit course for undergraduate and graduate students. Plans are already underway for the class to be held at Black Hills State University in Spearfish for 2015.


Include South Dakota's 125 years of statehood in your project planning

As you begin to plan for the 2014-2015 school year, take another look at the 125 school and classroom activities announced last spring. These activities are aligned to the Common Core Anchor Standards for the language arts and the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings.

The 125th Anniversary celebration activities can be a great resource to you as you prepare standards-based, information literacy projects for your students. They can also be used for collaboration and partnership between school librarians, classroom teachers, and other areas of the community, and they may lead to further projects and actions that allow students to question and explore the world in which they live.

Visit the Department of Education 125th Anniversary celebration webpage to view these activities and other historical resources, and take a moment to share them with your fellow teachers and school administrators.


SDMyLife is useful to students navigating career development

Workforce development is a hot topic in South Dakota, and helping students understand their career options after high school is a key piece of the conversation. SDMyLife is an online program available to all students in South Dakota in grades 7-12 to assist them in navigating the career development process.

The goal of SDMyLife is to help students better understand themselves and how their interest, skills, and knowledge relate to real-world academic and career opportunities. With the support of teachers, counselors, and parents, South Dakota students use SDMyLife to research, select, and plan their careers. To find a good match, students take interest and ability assessments. They can explore by career cluster, keyword, or school subject. Students can also research postsecondary education and training options, build a portfolio, study with Method Test Prep and find out about scholarship opportunities. As they progress through high school, students can map their education careers and build a Personal Learning Plan. They can also save assessment scores, log career planning activities and extracurricular involvement, and even build a resume!

If you're a interested in learning more about SDMyLife, visit and keep an eye out for upcoming trainings during the 2014-2015 school year!





21st Century, BHSU, bootcamp, Common Core, employment, school libraries, Spearfish, survey, USD, Vermillion

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The Cornerstone monthly e-newsletter is created by the South Dakota State Library. For more information on how to be a part of this newsletter, please contact us via e-mail with your questions and ideas.