February 14, 2018

That’s a Wrap!- Valentine’s Day

That's a Wrap! One great idea executed at two great BELS schools. Read more about how these creative librarians showed their students there is much to learn and gain from books- even ones with less than amazing covers. Elmwood Park HS and Saddle Brook MS/HS report with more details [...]
February 5, 2018

Training on Digital Citizenship in Elmwood Park HS

This past summer, many BELS librarians completed an online six week course on Digital Citizenship covering topics such as Online Safety, The Developing Teen Identity in Social Media, and Relationships and Digital Drama. For each topic or module, participants, [...]
December 13, 2017

Giving the Gift of Reading this Holiday Season

The Westwood Jr/Sr High School media center held its annual charity Scholastic Book Fair. The Honor Society students organized the book fair where new books were donated to the Pajama and Books Foundation after purchase [...]
December 4, 2017

A Physical Display for Virtual Books at Park Ridge HS

The bulletin board display was a collaboration between myself and my student library assistant. We were trying to think outside the box for the next bulletin board. We wanted to stay away from seasonal bulletin boards [...]
November 22, 2017

Poetry Off the Shelf

Brook Zelcer’s Creative Writing students plucked lines of poetry right off of the library shelves.  In the tradition of Book Spine Poetry or Book Title Poetry, students selected between 5 and 10 books for their evocative, euphonious, elaborate, [...]
November 22, 2017

Peter Richter Reaching Educators at NJEA and NJASL

Mr. Richter presents the workshop "Integrating Research and Technology in Collaboration with Subject Teachers"  at the November 16, New Jersey Association of School Librarians conference in Long Branch, New Jersey as well [...]
November 22, 2017

Digital Citizenship at Westwood Regional HS

The National Junior Honor Society has begun a "Digital Citizenship Awareness" program at Westwood Jr/Sr High School. The 8th grade students discuss issues like online safety, internet ethics, privacy and safe sharing. Parents [...]
October 3, 2017

MakerSpace Launch Party at Saddle Brook MS/HS

On September 29, 2017, Saddle Brook’s Library Media Specialist, Ann Hazley, held their 2nd annual Makerspace Launch Party.  The purpose of the event was to give students a sample of some of the projects they would be working on during [...]
October 2, 2017

Dumont HS Gets Magically Madeover

I did a decor overhaul myself this year- I transformed my media center (within fire regulation limits) into Hogwarts! I crafted a lot of the items myself, and even did a bunch of sewing for the various creatures you see as pictured below. I'm also running [...]
September 18, 2017

Discarded Books Become Library Art

Northern Valley Old Tappan students created a ‘Book Wonderland’ in the fiction section of the Library Media Center. Katie Choi, Kirsten Murphy, Logan Ruscick, and Susie Knaack spent six weeks in May and June working on the wonderland as their ‘Senior [...]
June 13, 2017

BELS MakerKits Bring Making to Your Library

Wood-Ridge Jr/Sr High School’s Career Exploration Class concluded the marking period with a Career Fair. The eighth grade students from Eileen Layman’ class used the database Naviance to take surveys on personal interests, [...]
April 5, 2017

BELS Librarians Plan Amazing NJMakersDay!

In our second year of NJMakersDay participation, BELS libraries brought even more energy and enthusiasm to the table. Our media specialists put a lot of time and effort into their programs and as you can see from the photos below, the [...]
April 5, 2017

Bergen’s Battle of the Books

Battle of the Books is a fantastic program organized by NJASL. Each year, 15 books are selected by the NJASL committee and participating students are required to read a minimum of 6 of the selected books. In Saddle Brook, Language [...]
March 27, 2017

Dr. Seuss Gets a Makeover

In celebration of Dr. Seuss's birthday on March 2, the Elmwood Park Memorial HS calligraphy class decided to revisit their youth. Using a few books they found in our school library, along with some of their own research, they chose [...]
February 22, 2017

Saddle Brook’s New MakerClub

In October I held my first MakerSpace event, using a MakerKit borrowed from BELS. We had five stations (Squishy Circuits, Circuit Scribe, 3Doodler, Makey-Makey and Little Bits) for which students could sign up over the course of three[...]
February 17, 2017

3D Printing Workshop for Library Media Specialists

After our BELS Business Meeting on Monday January 30th, we were joined by Doug Baldwin, Emerging Technology Librarian at the Piscatway Public Library & Administrator of NJMakersDay, and Riad Twal of Seton Hall University's [...]
January 26, 2017

Media Center Book Fair Generates Donations for Pajama & Books Program

Media Specialist Mr. Richter, along with the National Junior Honor Society, sponsored their annual book fair. This year, in addition to raising funds for the Independent Reading program, students donated brand new books to Mrs. Cathy Marcano of the Pajama [...]
January 23, 2017

North Bergen HS’s PEAK Students Escape the “Locked Library”

The North Bergen School District’s 5th grade P.E.A.K. Program visited the NBHS Media Center MakerSpace on December 9th and 16th, 2016. Students took part the popular Breakout EDU game, "Locked in the Library", and had [...]
January 20, 2017

Northern Valley Norsemen’s New De-Stress Area

There is so much research out there to support the importance of taking time out during the day to take a deep breath, relax and de-stress. At Northern Valley Demarest, we've been considering the idea of varying furniture for some time now. After attending [...]
January 12, 2017

Alumni Day at the NVOT Media Center

This year, the Northern Valley Old Tappan Library Media Center hosted the high school’s annual Alumni Return Day on January 5, 2017. The alumni are all college freshmen who participated in a panel discussion on “transitioning to [...]
December 13, 2016

Harvesting the Dumont Pumpkin Patch

This fall, Dumont Elementary School students created character pumpkins from their favorite books for the Media Center Pumpkin Patches. Students created their masterpieces at home using paint, cardboard, felt, glitter [...]
December 5, 2016

BELS On the Road

This fall, BELS has focused substantial efforts on sharing with the education community. We have been given opportunities to reach fellow librarians, administrators, teachers, and technology [...]
December 5, 2016

Author Visit Roundup

We’ve had a busy fall with author visits at many of our BELS schools. November was National Novel Writing Month and we hope our November visits have inspired some young writers to explore their creative talents! [...]
November 14, 2016

Sara Shepard Visits Northern Valley High Schools

Sara Shepard, author of the Pretty Little Liars and the Lying Game series, spoke to Northern Valley students at both Old Tappan and Demarest campuses on Friday, November 4th. She was warm and funny, and [...]
November 11, 2016

BELS Training at Bergen Community College

On October 27th, BELS held its first annual meeting and training session at the beautiful and well-appointed Bergen Community College Conference Center. The session was co-hosted by Dean David Marks [...]