Back to Minutes Page

Minutes for the CTLA Meeting of April 25, 2009

The meeting was held at the Medill Professional Center. A continental breakfast was set-up by president Annie Culverson who called the meeting to order at 9:45. Marge Fashing volunteered to take the minutes. Members in attendance were reminded that the minutes of the previous meeting were posted on the web page.

Annie began the idea sharing with a lesson that combined writing a resume with researching a historical character. An emphasis was placed on guiding students to avoid plagiarism. This lesson is adaptable to noted figures related to any designated heritage month.

Richard King, Neil Elementary School, shared his lessons in using the Money Savvy Program that was introduced by regional librarian K.C. Boyd. He used newspapers as well as materials provided by the program to help students develop shot-term and long-term goals for budgeting. Junior Achievement sponsors this program. Additional information can be found at Several other members have used this program with great success.

Questions arose regarding good sites to find coupons. Please e-mail your good ideas to Charlie Gunn who is our web master and he can add them as an agenda to these minutes.

Cynthia Armstrong, Uplift Community High School, spoke about She was able to get cameras for her students to enhance a writing project called “Through Our Eyes.” She emphasized working to get class teachers involved.

Lois Waiters, retired, spoke about a 7th/8th grade research project in which students selected a country to visit. Writing and research centered around planning the trip.

Edi Solkolnicki, Scammon School, spoke about the school’s International Festival. Each room picked a country to research and then shared information about authors and poets, history and biographies, and, of course, food. Kori Kubitz provided a trial subscription to "My Capstone Library" which was so useful that the principal will now purchase it.

Kathleen Hawkins, Lavizzo School, shared information about the Hug-a-Book program. Information can be found at

Marie Simon, Nathaniel Greene School, spoke enthusiastically about using the Money Saving Program. She introduces biographies by having students interview each other and then write a biography. May is “Drop Everything and Read Month” at Greene. One activity has students arriving at 8:30 to sit by their classroom doors and read. Marie walks by and rewards these dedicated readers with candy.

Alyce Miller, retired, spoke about the pet therapy program at her former school, Lewis, where she still volunteers. Adding to their travel research program, students built an airplane to serve as a learning station. She reminded members to start a Birthday Book Program in which students donate a book in honor of their birthdays. Her school’s International Fair also includes a parade.

Ann Adams, Christopher School, uses a financial planning program available from TCF Bank. As part of her young authors program, 8th grade students record reading the students’ books and burn CDs. Ann was able to get representatives from Junior Achievement to come teach their program.

Joan Gerig, Providence-St.. Mel’s School, holds a Poetry Contest. Winners receive a poetry book which she has gleaned from book fairs.

Lisa Perez of the Department of Libraries spoke about the progress of the centralized library system. Questions were raised about the status of the Chicago Public Library Card Drive. Lisa will check on the status. She pointed out new features of the newly remodeled professional library. She reminded everyone that this is not designed to be an "exemplary school library" but is to make new materials available for librarians to study.

The meeting ended with a discussion of the use and merits of using Accelerated Reader (AR). Scammon School is hosting an AR event on May 6th. If there is interest, this could be a presentation topic at future meetings.

A call for those interested in running for a CTLA office was made. Alyce Miller expressed an interest in running for Secretary. Carolyn Brna expressed an interest in running for Vice President. Nominations are still open with the election to take place at the May meeting. Names of those members who will retire at the end of the current school year should be submitted to the current Vice President, Tatiana Richardson, ASAP.

Respectfully Submitted,
Marge Fashing
Substitute Recording Secretary