All posts by Shannon Manigrasso

Welcome Back!

Although we’ve been back for almost a month (can you believe it ?!?!), this is my first update of the year now that I’m able to log back in 🙂

I’m looking forward to seeing you all in the LMC soon.  Let me know if I can be of any help in choosing books or helping you with research.
Don’t forget both of our on going contests are coming up to their monthly drawings. Get your entries in for “The Reading Road Trip” and “Mrs. Burek’s Newbery Challenge.” We’ll be picking our winners for September this week!

Mrs. Manigrasso

New Books!

A new book order arrived on Friday- hooray! This order contained many narrative non-fiction titles. Narrative non-fiction is the non-fiction many of us like to read- true accounts, written in an engaging fashion, like a fiction story. Much of the Common Core Standards ( concerns students reading more non-fiction, and I hope that these selections will encourage them to do!

Just to share a few I’m excited about:

The Grand Mosque of Paris by Karen Gray Ruelle and Deborah Durland DeSaix. This is the story of how Muslim people in Paris helped hide Jewish people in their Mosque complex during the Occupation by the Nazis.

Silk and Venom: Searching for a Dangerous Spider by Kathryn Lasky. This follows the adventure of a real-life professor and biologist as she hunts for a deadly spider.

Wheels of Change : How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom : (with a few flat tires along the way) by Sue Macy. This is the interesting story of the relationship between women and bicycles throughout history. 

If you’re in the school, stop by and have a look!

I hope your holidays are full of joy, and the New Year brings you much health, wealth, and happiness!

~Ms. Wojciechowski

Looking for Volunteers!

Good morning!

If you have some free time in your schedule, we’d love to have you as a SBMS LMC volunteer! This will help us to keep the books flowing while classes are going on.

As a Stone Bridge Middle School LMC volunteer, you will get to:

  • interact with great kids;
  • use neat tools;
  • discover new books;
  • fulfill those childhood dreams of working in a library!

If you are interested, please email me at, or call the LMC- 609-259-7292, ext 5101!


Ms. Wojciechowski

Awesome Assembly!

This morning our PTA graciously provided an amazing program for us! The theme was “inclusion”, and the members of the Soul Street Dance Company, based in Houston, Tx, showed off their dance moves! They incorporated elements of House, Hip Hop, Breakdance, and, my favorite, capoeira! Everyone was clapping and dancing in their seats-and some of our students got to show off their dance moves onstage! Here’s their facebook page:

They have performed all over the world- we are so lucky to have had them here! Here’s a video from their performance at Young Audiences in Houston- so you can see what you missed. 🙂

Have a great day!
Ms. Wojciechowski

Web 2.0

Web 2.0 is one of those phrases that librarians and computer people love to use, but that can sometimes be confusing. So let’s see if we can make some meaning. 🙂

In the early days of the “web”, information was static. People made pages (geocities, anyone?) and other people read them, and maybe got some information. Even online encyclopedias worked this way. Users were passive- they read the text on the page, and that was the extent of involvement.

Flash forward to Web 2.0. The idea behind web 2.0 is that the web is a collaborate space, where users are sharing information and interacting and manipulating the information on the screen. Many of these products have great application possibilities in the classroom. Prezis can revamp “boring” old powerpoints. Glogster is an online, web-based alternative to the paper-and-marker poster. Animoto can allow users to create video book trailers, instead of typing out a book report. Many of these Web 2.0 tools put the user firmly in control- the only limit is the imagination. As a bonus, the vast majority of these services are FREE, especially for students and educators.

Some links:

Check out those web 2.0 applications, and see what you can create!

One footnote: I mentioned encyclopedias before, which often brings up one of the bogeymen of Web 2.0: Wikipedia. The fear that many have is that Wikipedia is bad, because anyone can edit it. But that perceived weakness is actually a fantastic STRENGTH. As I’ve said in my classes “The bad thing about wikipedia is anyone can edit it. The GREAT thing about wikipedia is that anyone can edit it.” While you may get an amateur writing about space, you may also get an astrophysicist writing about space. Because anyone can apply to be an editor, every article is viewed countless times by people who may be experts on the subject- and they are very quick to correct inaccuracies! Plus, most of the articles have sources cited at the bottom- which is another resource for a student. I offer this advice: “Wikipedia is a good place to start- it’s just a BAD place to finish!” Take the sources listed, and explore them further. And if you are an expert on something, consider becoming an editor yourself. 😉

Thanks for stopping by!
Ms. Wojciechowski

Moving Along

It’s hard to believe Thanksgiving is almost here! I hope everyone has recovered safely from the damage done by Sandy. Things are moving along here in the Stone Bridge LMC- in addition to new books, we have some new clubs happening! Plans are afoot for an after-school gaming club to start, probably early in the new calendar year, and today was the first meeting of the lunchtime Harry Potter Club! This club is for 5th and 6th graders, and it’s a chance to get together and celebrate our appreciation of all things Harry Potter! We had about 30 students today, and we expect more as the word gets out. Upcoming HP activities include making crafts, playing some games, and of course, HP trivia!

We also just completed a very successful election trivia contest. Although the contest was cut a bit short by the Hurricane, we still managed to get 7 daily questions answered. We had daily winners from each grade level, who were able to select a small, patriotic-themed prize. More trivia contests are planned- so stay tuned.

I’m also busy working on a new book order. This time, the focus is on narrative non-fiction, to complement the Common Core Standards. I’m excited about a lot of the selections- no boring textbooks here! These works make informational texts enjoyable and engaging to read.

Thanks for stopping by!

~Ms. Wojciechowski



Welcome Back!

I hope everyone is adjusting well to being back in school! It’s been great to see so many eager readers already this school year. For those who don’t know me, I’m Ms. Wojciechowski (“Ms. W.”), and I’ve been in the LMC as a replacement teacher since last April. I’ll be here for the rest of this school year, and I’m excited to share my love of literacy, both of books and information, with everyone.

We have many great new books on order, and I’ll be posting updates as they arrive.

Our focus books this month are Award Winning Fiction and Informational Texts, and Fiction about New Jersey. Be sure to stop by the Stone Bridge LMC and check one out!

Enjoy this beautiful Fall weather!

~Ms. W.


Continue reading Welcome Back!

Hey SBMS Students…Looking to spend MORE time with friends?

Don’t wait another second… boy and snake.jpg

kids-running.jpgGrab a friend and head to the LMC where you and your buddy can find countless options for adventures you can embark on together… READING!  Many of our multiple copy books are displayed throughout the FICTION section of the LMC for easy access. Don’t wait another second!  Come on in and let your journey begin!  What a great excuse to spend extra time with your friends…And it doesn’t have to end there…Here are some great ways to engage in productive and enriching interactive literacy experiences with your book buddy or buddies…

cupcake-pink-brown-wt.gifBake a treat mentioned in the book!  You and your buddy could research a recipe online that sounds similar and exchange ideas and predictions about the story while you enjoy your treats!

Meet at the LMC during your lunch period and bring another friend along… The more the merrier!  This would be a great time to swap thoughts about the book, ask each other questions and entice another prospective reader to check out the book you are reading!

Skype!  iChat! Instant Message! Email!  If you and your book buddy have busy schedules, don’t fret!  You could hold your “book club meetings” through “face-time” if you both have this technology available at home!  If not, you could have live chat via instant message or you could do a basic email exchange. 

dj_b2school_beepencil_c.jpgRemember…Reading and Writing go hand-in-hand so keep a journal!  It is a great idea to log your own thoughts while you read and then to reflect upon your reading and book chats with your buddy or buddies!  Keep track of the books you have read and even make a WISH LIST of books you wish to read with a friend in the future!

Here are some ideas for questions to consider during your book chats but of course, you could come up with your own that are unique to your book selection too:

girl-reading1.jpgHow do you feel about our book choice so far? How does the story make you feel when you are reading it…Are you anxious to see what happens next?  What do you predict is going to happen next? Which character is your favorite so far?  Have your feelings changed about the story since the last time we met?  Is there anything that you are unsure about?  Do you have any questions about the context or content of the story?   What should our goal be for how much to read before we “meet” again? 

At your final book chat, share your overall thoughts about the experience.  This would be the perfect time to post a recommendation/review for the book in Destiny Quest too!  Don’t forget to log your final thoughts in your journal!  Be sure to have your next book selection ready to read so you can indulge in this enriching experience all over again!  ENJOY and be proud of yourself for choosing to participate in an activity that will no doubt reward you in endless ways as you nurture your own journey as a lifelong learner! 


“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
Dr. Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!

Mrs. Kelly Hostinsky

Technology & Reading Specialist

Stone Bridge Middle School Library Media Center


Graphics from Google Images