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Amy Brownlee, District Librarian


Amy receiving award

I am a K-12 Library Media Specialist in Sterling, Kansas. I teach weekly library skills classes at Sterling Grade School for grades K-5 and oversee the library media program at the jr. high and high school as District Librarian for Sterling USD #376. I also teach a section of Reading/Literature Circles for 6th graders.

Before I was a librarian, I taught language arts. Some of the classes I have taught in the past include: 7th, 8th, and 9th grade language arts; drama; yearbook; research class; Generation Y (technology, web design); study skills/advisory class; and literature.

My husband Larry is a band director and music professor at Sterling College. We are the proud parents of three children.

I enjoy reading, traveling, shopping, and spending time with my family. I enjoy music and like to sing and play the piano and flute. I am also involved in community theatre productions in Sterling and Hutchinson.
Education


Professional Activities

Awards/Honors

  • KASL President's Distinguished Library Media Specialist for 2017. Presented by the Kansas Association of School Librarians, Oct. 2017.
  • Fulbright-Hays Fellowship -- Chosen for "Ethiopia for Teachers" study trip to Africa, July 2010
  • William Allen White Children's Book Award Selection Committee (2003)
  • Beta Phi Mu (Library honor society) Achievement Award, 2002 -- awarded by Emporia State University's Beta Epsilon Chapter


award article


Professional Presentations & Publications

  • Tips from the Trenches: Managing a School Library.  Webinar given Nov. 19, 2019.  Sponsored by ESU and KASL. Resources available online.
  • Library Advocacy = The Power of Your Story. Presented by the KASL Advocacy Committee at KLA/MPLA Library Conference, Oct. 26, 2018, Wichita, KS. Resources available online.
  • Digital Citizenship: Teaching Safe, Effective, and Ethical Technology Use. Presented at KLA/MPLA Library Conference, Oct. 25, 2018, Wichita, KS. Resources available online.
  • Digital Citizenship. Presented at "Your School Redesign and My Library" training through SCKLS, Wichita, April 20, 2018. Resources available online.
  • Show me the Money: Grant Tips & Budget Stretchers. Presented at State Library Conference, Oct. 26, 2017, Wichita, KS. Resources available online.
  • Participated in Makerspace Sharing Session. Presented at KASL District III Workshop, Jan. 28, 2017, Newton, KS. Online resources include description of hands-on STEM kits, photos and videos of students using resources, and classroom management suggestions: STEM Hands-on Activities.
  • Busy School Librarian's Survival Guide. Presented at State Library Conference, Oct. 20, 2016, Wichita, KS. Resources available online.
  • K-6 Sharing Session. Facilitated session at State Library Conference, Oct. 20, 2016, Wichita, KS. Resources available online.
  • Elementary Library Lessons: My Favorites. Presented at KASL Annual State Conference, Oct. 1, 2015, Manhattan, KS. Resources available online.
  • Interviewed & quoted in online article "Smore Amazing!" by Carmaine Ternes. Published online in School Librarian's Workshop April/May 2015 issue.
  • Learning plan for "Cereal Box Advocacy" project published in School Library Monthly, December 2012.
  • Learning plan for "Persuasive Reading with Newspaper Editorials" unit published in School Library Monthly, March 2012.
  • Reading Takes You Places: Multicultural Literature, Lessons & Activities. Presented at KASL Annual State Conference -- Oct. 13, 2011, Salina, KS. Resources and links available online.
  • Ethiopia Presentation given to numerous school and community groups highlighting Fulbright-Hays fellowship trip. Presented to: USD #376 faculty and staff; Rice County Retired School Personnel; Chapter W P.E.O., Sterling, KS; church groups in Rice and Reno Counties, KS; Town Club, Hutchinson, KS. Resources available online.
  • Lessons from Ethiopia: Bringing Africa "Home to Students." Co-presented with Carol Settgast and Alica Thomas at Partners in Excellence Conference, Oct. 7, 2010, Junction City, KS. Resources available online.
  • "Celebrate the 8 Wonders" Community Research Project. Resources and links available online. Presentations given at:
    • KASL Annual Conference -- April 2, 2009, Junction City, KS
    • SCKLS Summer Reading Workshop -- Feb. 26, 2009, Wichita, KS
    • KASL District IV Workshop -- Oct. 18, 2008, Ellsworth, KS
  • Founded LibraryShare website featured in Kansas Library Conference presentation, April 2008.
  • "It Works for Me! Sharing Session for Teaching Library and Information Literacy Skills K-6" presented at the Kansas Library Conference, Wichita, KS, April 2008.
  • Into the Curriculum collaborative unit "Westward, ho! or Westward? No!" published in School Library Media Activities Monthly, January 2008.
  • "Collaborative Projects and School-Wide Themes" presented at Tri-Conference, April 2007
  • "Beginning and Leading a Book Discussion" workshop at SCKLS 2006 -- served as speaker for school libraries on panel
  • Wrote curriculum guides (published online) for William Allen White Children's Book Award nominees :
    • Savvy by Ingrid Law (2010-2011 Master List)
    • Miss Spitfire: Reaching Helen Keller by Sarah Miller (2009-2010 Master List)
    • Leap of Faith by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (2009-2010 Master List)
    • Clementine by Sara Pennypacker (2008-2009 Master List)
    • The Wright 3 by Blue Balliett (2008-2009 Master List)
    • Let Them Play by Margot Theis Raven (2007-2008 Master List)
    • Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett (2006-2007 Master List)
    • Ida B...and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World by Katherine Hannigan (2006-2007 Master List)
    • Aleutian Sparrow by Karen Hesse (2005-2006 Master List)
    • Rodzina by Karen Cushman (2005-2006 Master List)
    • Phineas Gage by John Fleischman (2004-2005 Master List)
    • The Same Stuff as Stars by Katherine Paterson (2004-2005 Master List)
    • What Would Joey Do? by Jack Gantos (2004-2005 Master List)
    • Seek by Paul Fleischman (2003-2004 Master List)
    • A Step from Heaven by An Na (2003-2004 Master List)
  • "Get Them Reading: Promoting Young Adult Literature," presented at KASL District Workshop
  • "Libraries Help us Grow," finding age-appropriate library resources for young children, presented at Tri-Conference
  • Presentation to undergraduate Children’s Literature class from Sterling College
    • Accelerated Reader and other educational software
    • Choosing and presenting read-alouds
    • Copyright in education
  • "Exploring the Challenge of Careers," presented at KAMLE (Kansas Association of Middle Level Educators) Symposium
  • "The Children’s Book Writing Project," presented at KAMLE Symposium


Grants Written & Received

  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $500 for library shelving. Sterling Grade School, fall 2019.
  • SCCF (South Central Community Foundation) Teacher Grant -- $100 to purchase filament for 3D pens for Sterling Grade School, fall 2019.
  • Moxley Foundation Grant: $1,919 for Cover One book repair machine, 2019.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $500 to replace "classics" and worn out copies of popular titles. Sterling High School, spring 2019.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $450 to replace worn out and damaged copies of popular book series. Sterling Grade School, fall 2018.
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $500 to purchase 2 iPads for SGS, 2019 (year 3 of 3-year cycle for library STEM program).
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $200 for supplies and signage for reorganizing fiction books by genre. Sterling High School, fall 2018.
  • SCCF (South Central Community Foundation) Teacher Grant -- $100 to purchase STEM materials (one Ozobot, one straw and connector building set) for Sterling Grade School, fall 2018
  • SCKLS Matching Technology Grant - $2,500 for chromebooks (written by Sherilyn McPherson), fall 2018.
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant - $260 for registration for Kansas Library Conference, fall 2018.
  • Moxley Foundation Grant: $600 for Tumblebooks subscription for SGS, 2018.
  • "Your School Redesign and My Library" digital citizenship presentation stipend from SCKLS: $500, spring 2018.
  • Dillons/Kroger corporate donation towards WAW ice cream sundae reward party: $25, spring 2018.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $300 for CD/DVD duplicator for SHS Library, spring 2018
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $300 for Cubelets robot kit for SGS Library, spring 2018
  • SCKLS STEAM Makerspace Grant -- Received a Makerspace STEAM kit valued at $400. Includes an Osmo, two 3D pens, books, and other hands-on materials.
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $500 to purchase hands-on STEM and problem-solving materials for SGS, 2018 (year 2 of 3-year cycle).
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $600 for a one-year subscription to TumbleBooks (online animated ebooks) for Sterling Grade School, fall 2017.
  • SCKLS Matching Technology Grant -- $1,088 for portable PA system and microphone with speaker (written by Sherilyn McPherson) 2017.
  • SCCF (South Central Community Foundation) Teacher Grant -- $100 to purchase two Ozobots for Sterling Grade School, fall 2017
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant - $200 for registration for Kansas Library Conference 2017.
  • SCKLS Ebook Grant -- $3,000 to purchase ebooks and digital audiobooks for our district, spring 2017.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $250 to purchase STEM materials for SGS, spring 2017.
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $500 to purchase hands-on STEM and problem-solving materials for SGS, 2017 (year 1 of 3-year cycle).
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $200 to purchase high-interest books for SHS, SJH students, fall 2016.
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $185 for registration for Kansas Library Conference 2016.
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $500 for books, games, and prizes for Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library activities
  • SCKLS Ebook Grant -- $3,000 for ebooks for our district FollettShelf 2015.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $500 to purchase high-interest books for SHS, SJH students 2015.
  • SCCF (South Central Community Foundation) Teacher Grant -- $100 to purchase student-requested books for Silent Sustained Reading 2015.
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $150 for registration for Kansas Library Conference 2015.
  • SCCF (South Central Community Foundation) Teacher Grant -- $100 to purchase student-requested books for Silent Sustained Reading 2014.
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $600 to purchase high-interest books for SHS, SJH students 2014.
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $450 for registration for Summer Institute for School Librarians, Common Core in the Library workshop, and Destiny library software training 2015.
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $450 for prizes for the SHS/SJH Divergent Challenge
  • SCKLS Ebook Grant -- $1,400 for ebooks for Sterling Grade School (science books for 6th grade, unlimited access)
  • SCKLS Matching Technology Grant -- $2,084 for computer, printer & toner, ergonomic chairs (written & administered by Sherilyn McPherson)
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $160 for registration for Kansas Library Conference 2013
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $300 to purchase high-interest books for SHS, SJH silent reading
  • SCKLS Ebook Grant -- $1,400 for ebooks for Sterling Grade School (FollettShelf beginning collection, focusing on nonfiction)
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $160 for registration for Kansas Library Conference 2012
  • Midwest Energy Community Fund Grant -- $1,000 to purchase ebooks for Sterling Grade School
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $200 to purchase books for SGS on recycling, environmentalism and conservation
  • SCKLS General Technology Grant -- $274 to match the cost of a 47" flatscreen HDTV for Sterling Grade School Library
  • SCKLS Ebook Reimbursement Grant -- $1,314 for ebooks for Sterling High School/Jr. High (FollettShelf beginning collection)
  • SCKLS Continuing Education Grant -- $710 for 3 class/conference registrations
  • SCKLS Matching Automation Grant -- $3,002 to purchase Destiny library management software
  • Midwest Energy Grant -- $300 for Early Readers for the SGS Library
  • Interlibrary Loan Development Program (ILDP) Grant for SGS -- $2600 to purchase books and titles for Kansas Virtual Library -- Books with Boy Appeal for Grades K-6
  • SCKLS Programming Grant -- $200 for Jr. High Mystery Dinner
  • Midwest Energy Grant -- $400 for Jr. High Book Chat Program
  • Interlibrary Loan Development Program (ILDP) Grant for SGS -- $2275 to purchase books -- American Hero Biographies
  • Interlibrary Loan Development Program (ILDP) Grant for SHS -- $2235 to purchase books, videos and DVDs on American Sign Language and Deafness
  • Midwest Energy Grant -- $250 for Sterling Grade School Library Renovation Project
  • SCKLS Matching Book Discussion Grant 2005 to purchase copies of Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
  • SCKLS Matching Technology Grant -- purchased data projector and CD/DVD duplicator
  • Generation Y Grant -- $15,000 -- awarded by Kansas State Dept. of Education (co-written with Tricia Schechter)
  • Interlibrary Loan Development Program (ILDP) Grant for Graphic Novels -- $825 -- awarded by Kansas Library Network Board
  • South Central Kansas Library System (SCKLS) Continuing Education Grant -- numerous awards
  • Kansas Association of Middle Level Educators (KAMLE) Mini-Grant -- $325 for Exploring the Challenge of Careers project


Professional Memberships

State organizations and committees:

  • Kansas Association of School Librarians (KASL) (2000-present)
  • Kansas Library Association (KLA) (2018-present)
  • KASL Advocacy / Promotions Committee (2017- present)
  • KASL Technology Committee (2013-2014)
  • KASL District III Director (2012-2013)
  • KASL District III Assistant Director (2011-2012)
  • KASL Council (2011- 2013, 2017-2018)
  • KASL District Workshop Study Committee, ad hoc, appointed by KASL President (2006-2007)
  • KASL Projects Committee (2002-2007)
  • SCKLS Annual Competitive Automation Grant Review Committee -- School Library Representative (2004)
  • William Allen White Children's Book Award Selection Committee (2003)

A Teacher Librarian is:

  • a TEACHER of Information literacy, research, digital citizenship, and technology skills
  • an instructional partner who collaborates with other teachers to integrate technology and literature in classroom lessons
  • an information specialist who develops a base of digital and print resources to support the school’s curriculum and promote a life-long love of reading
  • a program manager who creates an inviting atmosphere, manages funds, and provides dynamic library programming.
                                                                                                                          -Martha Littles

updated 11/21/19