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    Welcome to the Homer High School library page.

    I love helping students and parents find the information they need. Don't be shy. Ask for help.

    Check out my library at www.LibraryThing.com.

    Sincerely,
    TomeBoy

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Fake News Epidemic »

 

Fake news is any news which is broadcast or printed by the media that misleads the audience about a specific group, person, or action. The audience can be misled in either a negative or positive way. Fake news happens in two ways: (1) when reporters do not check their facts before releasing their news scoop, and (2) by choosing to “kill” a story –that is, not report on an event even though it is news-worthy and important.

 

By not checking facts, reporters and editors spread harmful gossip. They harm the reputations of individuals and groups. Some examples of this are “hate” crimes that supposedly occurred in the past year or two but really didn’t. This fake news spreads like wildfire, but the retractions and apologies by the news organization often are so insignificant that the general public is unaware of them. Why do reporters not check their facts before reporting? They often “trust” the source. They often have biases that predispose them to believing something bad about someone or some group they disagree with. Sometimes, they want to see a person or group discredited. They know that once negative news is published, that a person’s or group’s reputation can be damaged beyond repair.

 

By killing a story, crime and corruption and systemic problems are allowed to continue. An example of that happening right now in the United States, is the seemingly ubiquitous sexual violations being reported out of the entertainment industry. It turns out that the mainstream media knew about these incidents and patterns of behavior yet refused to report on them. So, the news is not only that powerful men in Hollywood and New York have been allowed to continue this gross behavior, but that some news organizations saw their connections to these powerful, wealthy men as more important than honest reporting.

 

Here are links to just a few examples of Fake News.

 

Battle of the Books 2017-18 »

Battle of the Books titles have been announced by the Alaska Association of School Librarians.  These will all be available on the KPBSD Overdrive library, so check there later if you would like digital copies for reading and listening this summer.  Speak to Mrs. Hampson if you would like to be on the Mariner team.

Titles Authors
1984* Orwell, George
Everything, Everything Yoon, Nichola
The Eye Of Mind Dashner, James
Hidden Figures Lee Shetterly, Margot
Monument 14 Laybourne, Emmy
Red Queen Aveyard, Victoria
The Smell of Other People’s Houses Hitchcock, Bonnie-Sue
These Shallow Graves Donnelly, Jennifer
Ties That Bind, Ties That Break* Namioka, Lensey
Zero Day Gangsei, Jan
*A previous Battle of the Books title

 

Summer Audio Books: SYNC »

Listen to books all summer with free audiobook downloads from AudioFile magazine.  Install the OverDrive app on your laptop or other device, and you’re good to go.  Each pair of titles is available for only one week, so download them when you can and listen later.

Listen to clips of every book here.

 

 

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Get text alerts when new titles are ready each week.

Check it out at the SYNC website.

Need help?  Ask the librarian.

 

Intellectual Freedom »

  • The right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction

 

  • Free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause, or movement may be explored

 

From the American Library Association, 2017

 

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The Homer High School library defends and promotes intellectual freedom by providing materials from many different points of view so students can better understand the issues of their world and make informed decisions.

Books We Love »

Happy Valentine's Day

                        Happy Valentine’s Day

 

Check Out a Playaway »

These devices can be used with earbuds or an auxiliary jack for speakers. A single AAA battery will play the shorter books from start to finish twice.

 

Here is a list of titles currently available at the Homer High library.

 

1984 by Orwell, George

A Christmas Carol by Dickens, Charlesplayaway

Anthem by Rand, Ayn

Cry, the beloved country by Paton, Alan

Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury, Ray

Frankenstein by Shelley, Mary

The good earth by Buck, Pearl S.

The Hobbit by Tolkien, J. R. R.

The horse and his boy by Lewis, C. S.

Matched by Condie, Allyson

The Prince and the Pauper by Twain, Mark

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Orczy, Baroness Emmuska Orczy

 

Let me know if you’d like to try a Playaway.

 

Welcome to the Library »

Welcome!  Come in to read.  Come in to study.  Come in to check your email.  Come in to type assignments.  The Homer High Library is a great place to work.

This year, I’ve added a student work space by the main doors.  Here you will find office supplies to complete your assignments, whether you need a single staple for a multi-page assignment or paper, scissors, glue, and markers for a collage or poster.  All I ask is that you leave all the materials in that space for others to use and that you clean up after working.  If we need refills on anything, please tell me.

 

 

2016 “Finish Strong” Reading Challenge »

finish lineYou started the school year full of vim and vigor.  Now, let’s finish it strong.

During the next six weeks, take the challenge.  Read!

Readings are inspired by Thomas C. Foster’s bestselling book How to Read Literature Like a Professor.  Participants will read short selections from Shakespeare, the Bible, and Greek mythology as well as one novel from the list below.

Stop by the library and get started today. Students who complete the challenge are invited to bring a friend to a pizza lunch in the library on May 17, the last Tuesday of the school year.

Take the challenge.  Finish strong.

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Shakespeare

The Bible

Greek Mythology

  • Gods, Men, and Monsters : Enter the world of ancient Greece where gods and godesses interferred in human affairs, causing no end of trouble.
  • Favorite Greek Myths :  These stories are retellings of the Roman poet Ovid’s stories in which gods and mortals change into different shapes and forms.

Novels

Guys Read »

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Guys, I would like your book recommendations.

What books have you really liked that you would recommend to other guys?

Check out some ideas here and let me know what you think:  http://guysread.com/books/

 

Earn Your Spurs »

spurs

Earn your spurs at the Homer High library by reading a western.  If you don’t know what a western is, then you really are a greenhorn.  Talk to Mrs. Akers, and she’ll set you straight. Corral one of these well-known and admired novels by Louis L’Amour to get started.

  • Bendigo Shafter
  • The Cherokee Trail
  • The Daybreakers
  • Down the Long Hills
  • The First Fast Draw
  • Flint
  • Jubal Sackett
  • The Man from the Broken Hills
  • Reilly’s Luck
  • Ride the River
  • Riding for the Brand

More experienced cowpokes might want to give Larry McMurtry’s Lonesome Dove stories a ride.  Those would be Lonesome Dove, Streets of Laredo, and Comanche Moon.

Maybe true-life adventures such as Captivity of the Oatman Girls or Life in the Far West better suit your style.

Watch John Wayne in The Cowboys during FOL October 7 – October 9. We’ll watch 45 minutes each day.  This movie is rated PG-13 for cowboy language, cowboy situations, and cowboy violence.

Ask Mrs. Akers for recommendations if you’re hankering to read more.

Finish Strong 2015 »

 

finsih strong

 

Our “Finish Strong” reading challenge this spring is based (again) on Thomas C. Foster’s book How to Read Literature Like a Professor.  Foster claims that to truly understand and appreciate Western literature, the reader needs an understanding of Shakespeare, the Bible, and Greek/Roman mythology.

So, the reading challenge for this April and May includes reading from these sources as well as four short selections from the following:

  • One true animal story from Animals You will Never Forget (Reader’s Digest)
  • One sci-fi short story by Isaac Asimov or Ray Bradbury
  • One Sherlock Holmes mystery
  • One suspense or horror story by Edgar Allen Poe

Finish Strong 2015 Titles

See Mrs. Akers to sign up.  We will celebrate during lunch on the last day of school, Wednesday, May 20th.

Accept the challenge and Finish Strong.

 

Freshman Summer Reading Challenge »

Who:  Any incoming freshman

What:  One new-to-you Charles Dickens novel or a collection of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes mysteries (five or more)

Where:  Anywhere

When: This summer

How:  It’s simple.  Find the book or recording that meets the requirements. Read it or listen to it.  Add a comment to this post telling me your name and your choice.  Come to school in August prepared to tell me about the book and your experience.

Why:  Reading and listening to good stories is good for you, and I think you will enjoy these works.

 

You may, of course, check out brooks from the Homer Public Library or buy books, but if you want to get them on-line instantly, try the following options:

 

Titles Available on Overdrive for KPBSD Libraries:

(log on using your KPBSD student number and password)

  • Great Expectations (Dickens)
  • Oliver Twist (Dickens)
  • A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
  • David Copperfield (Dickens)
  • The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Doyle)

 

Titles Available on Lit2Go:

(no log-on requried)

 

If you are new to Sherlock Holmes, I would recommend the following stories:

  • The Red-Headed League
  • The Adventure of the Engineer’s Thumb
  • The Solitary Cyclist
  • The Dancing Men
  • The Hound of the Baskervilles.

If you have questions you may email Mrs. Akers or write in the comment box.  We will celebrate in August during an FOL period.

Happy Reading!

Tentative Titles for 2015-16 Battle of the Books »

Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe Saenz, Benjamin Teen Issues, homosexuality
Caged Graves Salerni, Dianne Historical, mystery
Dorothy Must Die Paige, Danielle Fantasy, Oz
George Washington’s Secret Six Kilmeade, Brian Nonfic, historical, spies
If I Stay Forman, Gayle Previous, social issues, grief
The Living DeLa Pena, Matt Adventure, survival
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children Riggs, Ransom Mystery, paranormal
The Old Man and the Sea Heminghway, Ernest Classic, previous, survival
Peak Smith, Roland Previous, adventure, sports
Seraphina Hartman, Rachel Fantasy, dragons
Steelheart Sanderson, Brandon Sci-Fi, supervillains
Submerged Pettrey, Dani Alaska, suspense, romance
Abundance of Katherines Green, John Humor, previous, teen romance
Jepp who Defied the Stars Marsh, Katherine Historical, astronomy, Renaissance
Scar Boys Vlahos, Len Realistic, self-image, relationships

HHS Wins 2nd Place in the District-Wide Battle of the Books »

Congratulations to our Battle of the Books team for a successful conclusion to months of hard work!

  • David Graham, Alternate and Official Timer
  • Kane Sargeant, Member
  • Iustina Kuznetsov, President and Member
  • Camai Bass, Vice President and Member
  • Mrs. Esther Ashment, Battle Team Coach and LA Teacher

Mrs. Ashment is retiring this spring after teaching 30 years at Homer High School.  Thank you, Esther, for all you’ve done to promote reading at our school.  We will miss you.

 

 

Understanding Dewey Classification »

Introducing Dewey Browse!  Explore the Internet with student-friendly websites grouped by Dewey Decimal Classification.  Interested in philosophy?  Check out the 100’s.   Want to look up a Bible verse?  Try the 200’s.  Need to know details about Azkaban?  Go to the 800’s.

 

There is something for everyone in this Dewey database.

 

 

Is This for Real? »

“Gasoline Tax to Jump $3.00 January 1st!” No! Really? Maybe. Maybe not? The headline said it, so isn’t it true?

Some headlines scream doom and gloom, others announce incredibly good news. But are they true? The most difficult headlines to discern relate to current events and personalities and contain just enough “truth” to look real even if they aren’t. Readers who have believed such headlines in the past were labeled “gullible” and “naïve,” but now it is simply becoming more and more difficult to tell the difference between what is fact and fiction.

One way to protect yourself from jumping on the bandwagon of lampoon and scam sites is to become familiar with their names. When you see headlines from these sources, you will know to dismiss them as someone’s idea of fun and games. Here is a handy list of the most prolific “fake news” sites.

The most important thing for all students is to begin reading and/or watching a variety of news sources, so you are literate in current events from various points of view. Online, I would recommend both Fox news (conservative) and CNN (liberal). You will have a mix of views from these two sites to help you understand your country and world. If you listen to radio, try both NPR (liberal) and 650AM KENI (conservative).

A well-informed person is much less likely to fall for a fake headline, sparing him or her the embarrassment of believing and repeating a hoax or rumor which later is proven to be false.

 

Spring 2014 Reading Challenge »

This year’s “Finish Strong” challenge is based on the book How to Read Literature Like a Professor: A Lively and Entertaining Guide to Reading Between the Lines by Thomas C. Foster.  The author points out that much of our literature alludes to Shakespeare, the Bible, and Greek mythology, so your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to read from these sources as well as to read two new-to-you books.  See Mrs. Akers to sign up.

Accept the challenge and “Finish Strong.”

Required Reading

  • Two books
  • One selection from Shakespeare Stories by Leon Garfield
  • Three Bible stories from One Hundred Bible Stories
  • Three myths from D’Aulaire’s Book of Greek Myths or Osborne’s Favorite Greek Myths

The first ten students to satisfactorily complete the challenge are invited to the library with one guest each for pizza on the last day of school.

New Books! »

Our last order of new books for the year is now ready for checkout!  The following are a few of the titles:

  • Dodger by Terry Pratchett
  • Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier
  • Virals by Kathy Reichs
  • Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier
  • Curveball:  The Year I Lost My Grip by Jordan Sonnenblick
  • Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
  • Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon
  • Firestorm by Andrew Lane
  • Muckers by Sandra Neil Wallace
  • Outcasts United by Warren St. John
  • The Adventures of Nicolo Zen by Noicholas Christopher
  • The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe
  • A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly
  • The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
  • The Butterfly Clues by Kate Ellison

Several of these books are from the tentative title list for next year’s Battle of the Books.

Navigate Overdrive Like a Pro »

Borrow eBooks from the HHS library using Overdrive.  Navigating the site is easy, and Overdrive has produced a new video to show you the ropes.

Give it a try today.  Log in with the same information you use to log in on school computers.  Employees, use your e-number, but change the e to a 9.

Let me know if you have any problems or questions.

 

Book Talks and Author Interviews »

Check out the  author and book information for this year’s Battle of the Books.  Even if you are not in the battles, you might enjoy these titles.

 

 

Kindle, Nook, and eReader App Users: Digital Books are Available for Checkout »

Do you like to read eBooks on your Kindle, Nook, iPad, or other eReader?  Homer High students and staff may check out titles from our new Overdrive account at the following URL:

 

http://kpbsdhs.lib.overdrive.com

 

Log in using your school district ID number and usual password.  Check out up to three titles and waitlist up to three more.  (Staff, use your e-number and password but change the e to a 9.)

 

Some eReaders may require Adobe Reader to be installed, but it is free and the link is provided within the Overdrive program.

 

Give this a try today.  It’s very intuitive.  If you need help, please ask.

 

9-11 »

Twelve years ago our nation was attacked, and our lives as Americans changed dramatically.  Our current high school students were only small children then and know about this tragedy only through media.  They don’t remember the days before the TSA moved into airports, when family and friends could sit at the boarding area waiting for flights. Thanks to our principal, Mr. Waclawski, for finding a video that can help you understand a little more about what happened that day, September 11, 2001.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/MDOrzF7B2Kg?rel=0

 

Thoughts for Summer »

“I emphasize that active learning from reading is better than passive learning such as listening to lectures or watching television. When you read, your mind must work by taking in letters and connecting them to form words. Words make themselves into thoughts and concepts. Developing good reading habits is something like being a champion weightlifter. The champion didn’t go into the gym one day and start lifting 500 pounds. He toned his muscles beginning with lighter weights, always building up, preparing for more. It’s the same thing with intellectual feats. We develop our minds by reading, by thinking, by figuring out things for ourselves.”
~ Dr. Benjamin Carson

(Dr. Benjamin Carson, author of Gifted Hands, is one of the top pediatric neurosurgeons in the world and winner of the Presidental Medal of Freedom.)

Finish Strong 2013 »

* Nine books.  Nine weeks. 

*Take the challenge and Finish Strong. 

  • Call It Courage
  • I, Robot
  • The Big Wave
  • The Old Man and the Sea
  • Good Bye, Mr. Chips
  • The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
  • Owls in the Family
  • Shane
  • The Jungle Book
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray
  • The Red Pony or The Pearl
  • The Invisible Man (Wells) or The Island of Dr. Moreau (your choice)
  • The Outsiders or That was Then, This is Now or Rumble Fish(your choice)
  • Cat’s Eye or Plague Ship

 

Sign up now.

“Ebooks Are Actually Not Books.” Web log post. Digital Book World. N.p., 18 Mar. 2013. Web. 19 Mar. 2013. »

Ebooks are actually not books
By Beth Bacon

Books are objects

Books are objects.  They are limited by their physicality. Only one person can sit comfortably and read a book. So when a classroom or a school or a whole district wants their students to read a book, school district purchasing departments have no choice but to purchase one of them for each student. Granted, teachers can use the same books year after year until they wear out (and many districts frugally use them well beyond their intended lifecycle) but what districts are paying for when they buy a book is both the content and the “thing” that is a book.

Ebooks are software

Ebooks have practically no physical limitations. Once the “master” is finalized, all that is needed is to replicate it onto hundreds, thousands, even millions or billions of devices. This master doesn’t need to be located at the school, or outside the publisher’s own walls, or even in the same continent as the school that’s downloading it.

The replication of this master is not limited by time (an ebook can be downloaded today, tomorrow, or next year). Nor is it limited by space (an ebook that’s sitting on a server in Sidney, Australia can just as easily be downloaded in a classroom in Bombay, India as in Omaha, Nebraska.)

Ebooks can be accessed by thousand devices simultaneously without ever being “permanently” transferred to an individual device, as is the case when titles are distributed via the cloud or a website.

So an ebook differs from a book in that it is content only, not content-plus-object, as in the case of a paper book.

Even ebook content is not the same as book content

But let’s think f or a moment a bit more about content. Even when we look at content, an ebook can be very different from a paper book. Even though the only property an ebook shares with a regular book is the content—that element is changing. The ebook versions of many textbooks are being enhanced with audio, interactivity, and multimedia.

Once all of their attributes are listed this way, it’s pretty clear that ebooks are software, not books. So why, then, are publishers still trying to sell ebooks the same way they sell paper books?

Ebooks should be sold the way software is sold

It’s the conundrum that schools are f acing today. Ebooks are not books at all—they are software and they should be sold the way software is sold.

Why do some publishers and distributors require schools to pay f or a separate version of every ebook they want every child to see? Why can’t ebooks be distributed in bundles, with user agreements and tiered pricing levels that change based on the number of “seats” served?

Why aren’t more ebooks being served up in cloud-based computers, with password-protected access based on subscription payment models? Why are ebooks still being sold individually, as if their “thingness” was their primary attribute, when they are not, in f act “things” at all?

To be f air, some publishers are looking at ebooks this way. Certainly publishers that have incorporated in recent years are doing so.

Ebooks don’t have any of the physical attributes of paper books—and they shouldn’t have paper books’ pricing and distribution models, either.

EBooks are Now Available »

 

Do you like to read eBooks on your Kindle, Nook, iPad, or other eReader? Homer High students and staff may now check out titles from the new Overdrive platform at the following URL:

http://kpbsdhs.lib.overdrive.com

Log in using your school district ID number and usual password. Check out titles and waitlist more. (Staff, use your e-number and password but change the e to a 9.)

Some eReaders may require Adobe Reader to be installed, but it is free and the link is provided within the Overdrive program.

Give this a try today and let me know about your successes and problems.

Overdrive is Coming to HHS »

The eBook service known as Overdrive will soon be available at a select group of KPBSD high schools, including Homer High. If you have an iPod, iPad, computer, Kindle, Nook, or virtually any other device usable as an eReader, you will be able to borrow digital books from the library. This will significantly expand our collection and access to titles.

For now we are focusing on digital print books, not audiobooks. Even now, district librarians are working to select a broad range of titles to meet the needs of both students and teachers.

Stay tuned for more information.

Battle of the Books »

Get started reading those Battle Books now.   Pick up a bookmark of titles and authors.  Play Battle Memory.  The February battles are just around the corner.

See Ms. Webb for more information about meeting times and expectations.

 

 

2012-2013 High School Titles

Between Shades of Gray

 

Change-Up

 

Claudette Colvin

 

Clockwork Angel

 

Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks

 

Door of No Return

 

The Hobbit

 

Lockdown

 

Murder on the Iditarod Trail

 

Perfect Storm

 

Revolver

 

Sunrise over Fallujah

 

 If you need help locating any of these titles please ask for help.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Reading »

Summer “Reading” 

 

… on a boat

…in a tent

…under the Midnight Sun

…on the Alaska Highway

…at Grandma’s house “Outside”

 

 

Caution:   There will be NO quiz!   NO book report!   NO essay! 

 

 

My recommendation today is audiobooks from Lit2Go at the University of South Florida, found on iTunes as USF Lit2Go.

 

Last summer, I downloaded the unabridged Crime and Punishment for free onto my iPod from Lit2Go and played it over the car speakers while travelling.  The narrator pronounced the Russian names smoothly and easily so that the characters and places quickly became as familiar to us as those of any easy-to-read American novel.  I would recommend this title to anyone in junior high or above.

 

 

  • Lit2Go describes itself as “a free online collection of stories and poems in Mp3 (audiobook) format.” 

 

Seriously, everything they offer is FREE and good quality.  Compare this to other online audiobooks available for download.  The iTunes store lists at least four unabridged Crime and Punishment editions with prices ranging from $17.95 to $43.95. Why pay even one cent, when a Lit2Go edition is available from iTunes University?

 

 

Fiction and non-fiction are available.  Each title lists an abstract, citation, playing time, word count, and link to author information.  Each reading passage also can be downloaded as a PDF and printed if you want to follow along.

 

To use Lit2Go, you need an iTunes account and iOS5 (Apple operating system).  Download the iTunes U app for free.

 

 

 

 

 

Dare to Think for Yourself »

 

“The more you read,
The more you know.
The more you know,
The smarter you grow.
The smarter you grow,
The stronger your voice,
When speaking your mind,
Or making your choice”