In Our Feeds: libraries, Schwarzenegger, what we’ll be reading in 2013

Each Friday, we share a handful of links we found interesting, provocative, funny — or just plain cool. We call it In Our Feeds. Have a good weekend!

It’s been a slow week on the internet, as (rightly) people gather with their loved ones to celebrate the various end-of-year holidays! But, I did manage to find some super and super-interesting articles this week.

For starters — this one from the New York Times about how libraries are becoming the new bookstores, in a way.

Novel Novice blogged about new YA releases to look forward to in 2013, and it’s a long (and exciting!) list! Check it out here.

In somewhat surprising news, Arnold Schwarzenegger told the New York Times “I love everything about the Harry Potter franchise.” Nice!

And finally, as I prepare to clean out my office this long holiday weekend, this post from Book Riot is timely: get your book crafting on with adorable ideas on what to do with all those books you have.

Happy New Year, everyone! Thanks for making 2012 an incredible year on OOM!



The 2012 OOMies: Most popular videos of the year

Everyone loves a good book-related video, right? So it’s not a huge surprise that you all loved many of the videos Scholastic posted this year, from book trailers to author interviews. Yesterday we showed you the most-read blog posts of the year, so today, let’s see which videos resonated most with viewers!

Here are the 5 most-viewed Scholastic YouTube videos of 2012*:

5. Watch WordGirl February 20 for the Rise of Miss Power: Who doesn’t love seeing what kinds of shenanigans WordGirl has been up to? Clearly, fans of the show took to YouTube this year to see what was in store for one of our favorite superheroes!

4. Wings of Fire: This book trailer about the exciting new series from Tui T. Sutherland really piqued readers’ interest, coming in at #4!

3. Drama by Raina Telgemeier: After taking the graphic novel world by storm with Smile, award-winning and best-selling Raina Telgemeier came back in 2012 with Drama, her tale of a middle school theater team. Its book trailer took the #3 spot!

Continue reading The 2012 OOMies: Most popular videos of the year

Only 12 states guarantee free, full-day kindergarten to every child

Despite increased attention being paid to the importance of early education and research showing clear connections between access to Pre-K and K programs and future school success, only 12 states in the U.S. guarantee and fund free, full-day kindergarten to all children by policy.

The Children’s Defense Fund has created a great map showing how each state handles Kindergarten access. Click through to their page to play around with the interactive version of the map that gives information on each state.

Yes, it costs money to make full-day kindergarten and Pre-K universal. But that investment has a very high rate of return, according to researchers — as high as almost any other public policy investment.

The 2012 OOMies: Most popular posts of the year

After a long holiday weekend (and another to come as we ring in the New Year!) we’ll be using the blog this week to share with you our annual OOMies: our picks for favorite posts and videos of the year. First up, though, we’ll take a look at the posts that caught YOUR eyes in 2012!

It’s always interesting to look back at which blog posts generated the most interest and traveled the farthest on the web. This year in particular was fascinating, since the blog received record numbers of monthly pageviews — setting new records nearly every month! A big thank you to all of you for reading and sticking around as we prepare to head into our 5th year of blogging. (Whoa.) So, here goes:

Presenting..the most popular posts of the year!

Continue reading The 2012 OOMies: Most popular posts of the year

The 5s: Amazing teachers we met this year

As we close out 2012, we’re looking back on the great things in social media and tech that caught our eye this year. We’re calling it The 5s! Today, it’s 5 amazing teachers we met this year.

This may have been one of the hardest “5’s” list to create. Everyday we encounter incredible teachers and we are so thankful for everything they do! But when thinking about some of the amazing educators we have met this year, these are five that stood out.

Christy Crawford, Bronx Community Charter School, NY

A true teacher of the 21st Century, Christy is the technology teacher at the Bronx Community Charter School in New York City. Her passion for using technology to elevate the learning experience brings relevance and excitement to her classroom. Using platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, blogs and Storia, her students are able to create and read and learn in powerful ways. Christy often refers to technology as the “great equalizer.” Continue reading The 5s: Amazing teachers we met this year

Be a last minute angel

Only about one week is left in 2012!  How did this happen?  The holidays are always a blur as we all manage family time, friend time, shopping time and more.  It’s a beautiful blur filled with sparkling lights, warm thoughts and colorful decorations, but a blur nonetheless.  With just a little bit of time left in the holiday season, there are still quick and simply good deeds that you can tackle and become what I like to call a last minute angel.  Here are just some ideas!

1. This is the final mad dash for present shopping and it can be intense.  Many OOMers agree that the best thing to do at a time like this is discard the generic last minute gifts of wine, cookies or gift cards.  Take this time to make a donation in honor of your loved ones.  Or if you’re hosting a party, ask your guests to make a donation in lieu of gifts.  There a many causes, particularly in response to tragedies, that could use support at this time of year.

2. Buy a toy for a child you don’t know.  You’re already shopping so why not add one more gift to your list?  You don’t need to wrap donations so this quick pick up can be just as easily dropped off.  Find a drop point in the mall or a nearby community center and you’re all set and making a child’s holiday! Continue reading Be a last minute angel

There for you then, there for you now: Ann M. Martin on The Baby-sitters Club!

The Baby-sitters Club welcomes a new generation of readers with the news that the first 20 are now available as ebooks (with their classic cover art, no less!). Today, Ann M. Martin is here to reflect on the series so many of us adore. Thanks, Ann! 

After an exciting, exhilarating, and unexpected fifteen years of writing the Baby-sitters Club books, it was with mixed feelings that I ended the series in 2000 with the members of the BSC moving onto high school in Graduation Day.

After the series ended, I noticed that in addition to getting letters from children about how much they enjoyed the books, I was getting quite a bit of fan mail from people in their 20s and 30s who had read the books when they were younger.  They were nostalgic for the books of their childhood, and in many cases, they wrote about the influence the series had on their lives.  It was heartwarming to learn that many of my original readers had grown up and become English majors, writers, teachers, librarians, bloggers, and editors as a result of their early love of the BSC books.  

Continue reading There for you then, there for you now: Ann M. Martin on The Baby-sitters Club!