Annual End of Year Report
Compiled and composed by:
Karen Hornberger, Library Media Specialist
Palisades High School
Library Media Center
This is our 12th annual report
and the purpose is to
educate readers on the
programs and services that
we have offered throughout
the year, supporting both
students and staff with the
goal of making students as
academically successful as
Section One: provides data on our
school, usage of the library, and our
Section Two: provides information on
how I, the Library Media Specialist, have
supported student learning and
Palisades High School is
located in Kintnersville, PA
with a current enrollment of
approximately 650 students
and approximately 60 faculty
Karen Hornberger is the
Library Media Specialist.
Corine Rillera is the
Computer Lab Assistant.
The category “other” represents visits from
health, guidance, world languages, etc.
The category “other” represents visits from
health, guidance, world languages, etc.
In addition to classes that visit, we also
• Student assistants
• Students on permanent pass
• Students using the cyber center
• Students from study hall
• Students using the copiers
• Students taking tests
WE are a very, very BUSY and
This year was the first time that the high
school library has had a student helper
program in which the students serve as
“triage workers”. The student helpers are
the people that students come to when
they need to sign a book out, receive help
with the copier, and obtain supplies and
passes. The helpers also shelve books
and pull items teachers need for units.
This system was vital in allowing me to
focus, without distraction, on helping
teachers and students. I no longer needed
to worry about a student who wanted to
sign out a book while I was formally
instructing a group or informally working
with a student or teacher. I could remain in
a brainstorm session with another teacher
on how we wanted to plan and roll out an
upcoming unit. The student helpers
received community service hours and
many, many thanks.
In our collection, we have:
• Print books ( 19,844 titles)
• eBooks (over 7,000 titles)
• Advanced Placement Source (articles
from scholarly journals, etc.)
• SIRS Researcher (articles from national
and global magazines and newspapers)
• Video cameras
• Two tablets (gifts from the Class of
2013! Thank you!!!! The students
• PLUS… state-provided Power Library
Tinicum Civic Association has, yet again,
graciously donated money to our library.
We were able to update our collection mid-
year, and chose titles that students had
been requesting. Our budget has been cut
significantly and this allowed us to order
more books that the students wanted. We
were VERY grateful for their donation.
The Tinicum Civic Association raises
monies through community based events
with the purpose of supporting local non-
profit organizations that contribute to the
general welfare or enhance the quality of
life in our area. Please consider helping the
association by volunteering at or attending
the upcoming Tinicum Arts Festival, July
12-13, 2014 in Tinicum Park or by visiting
Stover Mill Art Gallery located on River
Road in Erwinna.
In-house represents print materials along with AV materials.
Electronic represents eBook accesses.
Note: the discrepancy between the total and the total from
circulation by month is due to the presence of June circulation.
Advanced Placement Source offers articles
from scholarly journals with over half
originating from international publishers.
This year, there were 2,088 searches
performed within the database.
SIRS Researcher offers articles from
national and global magazines and
newspapers. This year, there were 1,066
searches within the database.
Noodletools is a
This year, there were 2,018 bibliographies
We only requested 72 interlibrary loans
this year. In the past, we had requested up
to 350 annually. This significant drop
indicates to us that the rental of the eBook
subscription is better serving our patrons
immediate research needs.
For Back to School Night, I created a
Resource Brochure, set up a table (which I
shared with a representative from Bucks
County Public Library that I had asked to
join me), and handed the brochure out to
Throughout the year, when teaching, I
would take the new library resources
brochure that I created and hand each
student a copy. As I taught, they could visit
each website on their computer,
respectively searching keywords related to
their topic. The students were able to mark
up their copy of the brochure with notes on
which databases were most useful to their
As a librarian, it is important that I inform
students of the services and resources that we
provide, however, I don’t see them
consistently. This year, I requested a way to
communicate with all students and was pointed
to the ability to email all high school students as
I sent emails throughout the year. Examples of
topics sent to all were: the resources we offer,
incorporating statistics into research writing,
embedding portions of videos into PPTX, etc.
Many students have mentioned that they have
found them useful.
I found that it was most useful to send the
information to the entire student body after
formally instruction had been provided. This
way, all students were able to see the
information, but students who had just learned
the information had ready access to it.
This year, we were allowed to permit
students to utilize cell phones for
classroom learning. At the beginning of
the year, we also received an in-service
on questioning strategies.
I merged the two opportunities. After
the lesson, I developed questions for
each research lesson and I asked the
students to login to Padlet (an electronic
sticky wall) to answer questions. These
answers prompted class discussion. I
like using this type of instruction
because I find that quiet students gain a
Erin Banas came to me asking if I would collect
resources to help her students determine whether
President Truman was justified in dropping the atom
bomb. The students were to complete a research
paper to argue their chosen side. I developed a Google
Site which “curated” quality articles on Truman and the
I presented the site to students along with a lesson on
properly annotating a bibliography to students in
semesters one and two.
After formal instruction took place, I developed a survey
designed to identify their individual research needs.
I must say that the development of the survey was the
best thing that I did all year! I used it often in many
classes and it allowed the opportunity for students to
indicate on the form that they needed assistance which
flagged me to visit them knowing where they needed
During the same point in time, Morgan Flagg-Detwiler
was teaching the same concept and asked her students
to use the site with the end product being participation
in a class-wide, structured debate. Both classes were a
lot of fun to support. I also created a similar site for Bob
Schlegel for his Reconstruction unit.
Through the survey, which was used to assess the
students’ individual research needs, I found out that
there was a trend that students were responding that
they needed help with using lengthy scholarly journal
This surprised me since it has been integrated into my
formal instruction for years. I believe that it may be that
there is too much information integrated into the one
lesson; by the time that the students learn about how to
work with the articles, they do not grasp the entire
strategy due to having received too much new
information at one time.
I responded by creating and sharing (with all students)
a slide show which explained how to read these lengthy
and technical journal articles. From now on, I will
reference the slide show so that the students can know
that they can refer to it when needed.
I was also surprised at the public interest in the reading
and writing strategies associated with scholarly
journals. Within one and a half months of posting the
slideshow on slideshare, I have had 3011 views, 4
downloads, and 1 favorite.
Last year, our principal had us formally record
and monitor how we were helping struggling
students. This system allowed me to help
teachers help their students. I worked best with
Kevin Ronalds to provide support to
students. Together, Kevin and I identified which
students were struggling the most during senior
project. I created a formal document which
Kevin and I could both edit together. I tracked
when I met with students and what the progress
was. Kevin would monitor the student in class
and send the student over for assistance
I also work closely with some students who I
know are generally struggling. I identified one
student through discussions with her about
school and decided to also intervene with
her. This student is at risk and I was able to
communicate with her teachers and give that
extra support and work with her teachers to
troubleshoot how to help her. We had success
and she made honor roll for the first time ever!
Annually, Morgan Flagg-Detwiler asks me
to support her class in developing thesis
statements during the Civil War Project. I
do a formal lesson and then visit the
students to ensure that they are happy with
the thesis statements that they are
We heavily pushed the integration of statistics in
research this year. As a result, many students
have had the suggestion and lessons on finding
numeric information to support their research
and how to turn numbers into writing.
Some students also created infographics to
support their research. Kevin Ronalds has an
infographic rubric that we used.
In February, we hosted a Twitter Chat where six
schools came together on Twitter at a designated
time to discuss the concept of the “American
Dream”. Aimee Alfredo’s class worked hard on
preparing conceptual questions that they would
pose to participants, while Rob Reilly’s class
worked on the technical elements of hosting a
I proposed the original idea, met to plan the event
with the teachers, located schools who were
interested in participating, checked the status of
our groups’ progress, communicated schedule
changes with the schools (due to inclement
weather), helped run the event, archived the chat
and shared the archive (along with how to run a
Twitter Chat for students ) with the educational
It was a lot of work, but it was worth it! It was
exciting to bring students from all levels who were
learning about the same concept together to talk
about the impact of this concept upon their lives
and upon literature. I hope to run a similar event
next year, but will be considering alternates to
Twitter as the platform.
We used Storify to archive the Twitter
Chat on the American Dream. As I
learned the program, I realized that it
was a great alternative to searching
Twitter as an information source for
students who were researching.
I began to embed the utilization of
Storify into my lessons for students who
were beginning to conduct long-term
On March 31, I began as an instructor for
the Gifted Seminar III classes. During this
time, I designed instruction for seven
students during three different class
periods. As an instructor, I created and
introduced: Citation Style Analysis (which
allowed the students to investigate the
difference between MLA and APA citation
styles, select one and format their entire
paper following the chosen style) an
Infographic assignment, a notecard
exploration project, and a thesis statement
and outline self and peer assessment.
These assignments were designed to take
them through the research project to
complete a 10 page research paper and
present their research.
The original instructor returned in mid-
May. I have been able to see the
presentations and am very proud of the
students that I was able to instruct.
Each year, classes come in to select
historical fiction titles. Previously, we have
relied on the stickers on spine labels to
direct us towards books which fit into the
historical fiction genre. The student would
then need to scan the book for the time
period to see which are appropriate to the
timeframe of the course.
This year, I worked to create resource lists
that would align with each course (US
1824-1920; US 1920-present; World 1900-
present). I made certain that each book
within the resource list had a summary
which would accurately describe the novel
in enough depth to be useful for the
students. This work was translated into
bibliography lists that were printed for the
students to read each title and better
match it to their interests and needs.
Our new business teacher, Tom Poynton,
approached me about a unit that he
created in which students needed to read a
book about business. I created a business
resource list from the existing resources
that we have. However, when a new
teacher comes in and designs new
lessons, we do not always have many
books that match their needs that well. I
work with the resources that we have, but
also make certain to customize a new
bibliography of resources to order in the
future which support the new unit.
Next year, Tom can look forward to
allowing his students to choose from a
more varied range of topics and interest
In November, we hosted a fundraising
event at our local Barnes & Noble where
we had our madrigals sing, football players
read to children, a pie eating contest, a
“How well do you know your best
friend/teacher/or sibling” contest. While
not heavily attended, we were told it was a
great showing for a high school. You can
see the videos from the event here and
In May, we ran a sale of required summer
reading books through our local Barnes &
Noble. This sale also serves as a
fundraiser for the library and provides
convenient delivery of the summer reading
materials directly to our school.
I participated in a study group in which
myself, Carole Lee Deemer, Erin Banas,
and Bob Schlegel discussed research skills
across the curriculum and grade
levels. We wanted to remedy the fact that,
formerly students may have missed
instruction that incorporated certain skills
and may not have had the opportunity to
use important skills enough to become
effective at performing them.
As a result, we created a scope and
sequence to integrate particular skills into
specific classes and determined in which
grade each skill should be focused upon.
We aligned standards to our work and the
library and 12th grade social studies SLO
were also based upon our work. We
developed new materials to support the
skills. Finally, we presented an in-service
to staff and required that they determine
which projects would integrate the skills.
I like to share the things that I do
throughout the year with other
librarians and educators.
I do this through my blog. This year
on my blog, there were:
• 3704 views
• 14 new posts
• The most popular new one (but also
the oldest from this year) was: If you
Give an eBook a MARC (eBook
Management in Destiny) with 275
• Most popular ever is ironically
(because my decision was not to
genrefy): Genrefying the Fiction
Section:The Pros and Cons 961 views.
My Principal, Rich Heffernan, nominated
me as a Keystone Technology Innovator
during this school-year and I look
forward to the many training
opportunities that being awarded this
title will offer. I am honored by the title.
I serve on the HSLC Board of Directors as
Secretary. This company supports the
state interlibrary loan system along with the
Power Library Databases.
It has been interesting to see the
connection between libraries and a non-
profit business which supports them.
My school, generously, provides me the
time every month to serve in this role.
My goals are to continue to meet the needs
of both students and teachers next year.
I hope to keep striving to provide the best
program possible for both through quality
resources provided and the communication
of how best to access and interact with
I hope to continue to share good ideas with
others to inspire them and I hope to
continue to be inspired by others!