Welcome to the Des Moines Elementary School Library!

Mrs. Karen Smith

Mrs. Pam Idler
Library Assistant

School Hours: 9:10-3:40
PCT Fridays: 9:10-2:10
except Sept. 2 & Feb. 24
Stack of books
  • Celebrate Dr. Seuss with Read Across America Spirit Week - February 27 to March 3

    Posted by Karen Smith at 2/9/2017

    Read Across America Spirit Week

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  • New Books Have Arrived!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 1/25/2017

    Thanks to your support at the Scholastic Bookfair, Des Moines students will have much to smile about when they see these new books!  Our school received a portion of the sales to purchase new titles.  Over $1000 worth of new books will be available for checkout soon. 

    new books new books new books new books

    These are just a few of the popular titles that students have been asking for including Graphic Novels (some people think of them as 'comic books') like Sisters, Ghosts, Drama, Smile, Babysitter's Club, Amulet; plus new Spirit Animals Fall of the Beasts, Choose your own adventure books that puts reader in suspenseful situations on a quest to survive... 


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  • Learning to Code

    Posted by Karen Smith at 11/21/2016

    In today's ever-changing world of technology, it is becoming increasingly important for students to understand how and why these tools work the way that they do.


    Through an organization called CODE.ORG, students will have opportunities to learn the process of "coding", or computer programming, through a series of self-pacedlessons to help them experience a bit of computer science.


    During the month of December, students will be able to work through these lessons during their weekly library class times.


    Students are welcomed to work on these activities at home with an internet-compatible device, such as desktop computer, laptop, i-pad.  Just click on one of the CODE.ORG logo below which will take you to that website.  It is best to do each lesson in order as the skills build upon each other increasing levels of difficulty.


    Course 1  (Blue box) is best suited for younger students, grades K-2.  

    Course 2  (Grey Box) is best for grades 3-4 (grades 5-6 with little or no prior experience).  

    Course 3  (Purple Box) is best suited for grades 5-6 with prior coding experience as the pacing through lessons is a bit faster.



     COURSE 1                                                 

    code dot org course 1     code dot org course 2

                                              COURSE 2  

    code dot org course 3 COURSE 3            

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  • Online Bookfair Starts November 15th!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 11/4/2016

    Our school bookfair arrives on November 18th and will contain only a sample of what Scholastic Book Publishers have to offer.  Starting on Tuesday, November 15, families will have an opportunity to purchase books from the online warehouse through a special bookfar website. 

    The Online Bookfair is open from November 15-December 3.   FREE shipping to Des Moines Elementary - and will be delivered to your child unless you contact Mrs. Smith for delivery instructions.  Orders can be shipped directly to your home for an additional fee. 

     Online Bookfair

    By clicking on the bookfair icon, you will be able to select and purchase books for all ages, reading levels and interests.  After clicking on icon, scroll down to the "Shop Online" section and click "Shop Now".  As with the at-school bookfair, all sales will count toward new books for our school library. 

    The at-school bookfair is open Friday, November 18 from 2:15-7PM; Monday, November 21 from 9 AM-7 PM and Tuesday, November, 22 from 9 AM-5 PM.  Volunteers are still needed!  Contact the school if you're able to help.


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  • Discover U Returns to Des Moines School Library October 17-22!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 10/13/2016

    As part of Highline Public Schools quest that every student will graduate prepared for 'College, Career and Citizenship', students will have various opportunities to discover, explore and start thinking about their future.  Yes, college really does begin in kindergarten! 


    Granted what a 5-year-old envisions him/herself doing when they grow up may be vastly different than the dream of an 18-year-old high school graduate.  But, the idea around the King County Road Map Project's Discover U program is to get students thinking and talking about what jobs/careers excite them and realize that the work they are doing in class today will help to prepare them for these future goals.  


    Students will have some time during their library classes this week to pause and reflect on what life after high school might look like for them.


    Be sure to check out the Exploring Careers and Exploring Colleges links on this library webpage for additional information and resource activities.

    Discover U


     In 2014, the Highline Schools Foundation for Excellence awarded a grant for our school library to purchase many books on different careers.  They are continually checked out and enjoyed by our students.  Plans are in the works to add additional titles on different careers soon.

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  • It's That Time of Year Again -- Camp Waskowitz!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 10/3/2016

    One of my favorite times of the school year when 6th graders make the annual trek to a very magical, special, inspiring place nestled in the Snoqualmie Forest outside of North Bend known simply as WASKOWITZ.


    I attended as a student during my 5th and 6th grade years -- yes, I was lucky to go twice!  As a 5th grader, I attended Valley View Elementary and during those years, the school went every OTHER year, with 5th and 6th grade.  Then the following year, I transferred to Bow Lake Elementary and like most schools, their students attended each year as 6th graders.  In fact, my 6th grade class was there when the Lookout Tower arrived, suspended by cable as it was plucked off it's perch on Stampede Pass and transported to Camp Waskowitz prior to being placed in its permanent resting spot within the 300 acres.  Students often hike there and on a clear day, the view of North Bend and surrounding areas is amazing.


     I also returned as a leader in high school, as well as working a few years as a senior counselor for a gymnastics camp that was held at Camp Waskowitz each July.  As a teacher/librarian, I relish the opportunity to make a visit each year while my school is there. 


    Prior to the 6th graders visit, I share with them the rich history of Camp Waskowitz, from it's early days as a Civilian Corps Camp -- CCC North Bend 2911 -- in the 1930's; to the unwavering dedication of a former Highline High School teacher, later Highline School District Superientendent, by the name of Carl Jensen, whose dream was to create an outdoor educational camp for students; to a former University Washington student, football player, 1st Lt. US Army Air Forces War Hero by the name of Frank 'Fritz' Waskowitz... how this special place continues to make lifelong memories for the thousands of students who attend camp every year.  


    A former Camp Waskowitz student and leader named Jason Gayler recently produced a video showing Camp Waskowitz using a drone.   For those who have never been and curious what the main camp looks like, here's a glimpse.  For those who have attended in years past, perhaps it will spark a special memory for you.  Click on the Camp Waskowitz picture for the video.  Enjoy!  

    Camp Waskowitz Sign

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  • Welcome Back Dolphin Readers!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 8/19/2016

    School starts on Thursday, September 1st.  There will be a back-to-school, meet-n-greet starting at 3:45 on Wednesday, August 31st. Be sure to stop by the library and say "hello!".  I would love to see you!   There will be an ice-cream social provided by Des Moines fabulous PTSA from 4:30-6. 

    I hope each of you have been reading all summer.  Did you participate in the King County Library Summer Program?  I'm looking forward to hearing about the stories you've read and even about your summer events.  The great thing about reading is that it can take you places, even when you're at home.  You could go down the Mississippi River with Huckleberry Finn... travel around the world, even back in time with Jack and Annie in their magical tree house... so many possibilities, so many choices.

    There will be lots of new books put out on the shelves this fall that I know you will be excited about.  Be prepared for surprises!

    In the mean time, be sure to figure out a safe place for your library books this year.  Will it be a special shelf? a designated basket?  or simply put into your backpack after each time you read?  Returning books on time is not only showing you can be responsible, but also being respectful so that others can enjoy reading that book too.

    See you soon!



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  • End-of-School-Year is Fast Approaching!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 4/29/2016

    Children in Library

    End-of-the-school-year is fast approaching which means

    library books need to be returned and accounted for.

    The last day for checkouts will be Friday, May 27, 2016.

    All books are due back to our library by Friday, June 3, 2016.

    Report cards will be witheld in our school office for students

    who still have books checked out as of the last day of school,

    which is Thursday, June 16, 2016.   If a book is lost, the full

    replacement cost is expected to be paid.  Students are reminded

    during their weekly library classes about overdue books and

    reminder letters have been given to those with missing books.

    Mrs. Smith will be rewarding classes that have everything

    returned or paid for -- all student's records are cleared -  by

    Friday, June 10, with root beer floats/ice cream.  This was

    well recieved last school year so Mrs. Smith is hoping for

    another successful end-of-the-year library return!

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  • Discovering Owls thanks to Highline Foundation for Schools!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 3/23/2016

    The 5th and 6th grade students at Des Moines have been Discovering Owls through an Excel Grant awarded to Mrs. Smith by the Highline Foundation for Schools.  discovering owls certificate       Students learned about the habitat, characteristics and other facts of the Barn Owl and their importance to the environmental ecosystems.  The biggest excitement and discovery comes from dissecting an owl pellet, which contains bones and fur that the owl is unable to digest.  It is coughed up several times a day and a train eye can find them on the ground near where barn owls nest.  Though these are actual owl pellets, they have been specially heat santitized for use in many school science classes.student sorting skeletal bones skeletal bones   Mrs. Smith has been guiding students through this unique study during their weekly library class time. 

    The best discoveries have been skulls of small mammals, like voles, shrews, mice that the Barn Owl ate.  One student found a skull of a crow in his pellet, with the long beaks still attached!

    Thank you to the many wonderful people who have made donations to the Highine Foundation for Schools to help make this learning opportunity possible.  Your support for our students is greatly appreciated!

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  • New Seat Cushions for the Library!

    Posted by Karen Smith at 3/22/2016

    As part of a nationwide #BestSchoolDay flash funding via Donors Choose, many Washington State teachers had their project requests granted through a generous donation from Microsoft co-founder/Seattle Seahawks Owner Paul G. Allen.   As part of this flash funding, Mrs. Smith was able to get colorful seat cushions for the library.

    The students have been absolutely thrilled with them thus far!  Students are also able to use them while seated in chairs when working on the computers.  Several students have asked if they can use them every week during library.  YES!  Seeing the joy in seemingly little things make such a lasting impact.  students reading seat cushions

    Donors Choose.Org has been instrumental in helping Mrs Smith and several other teachers at Des Moines, plus numerous other teachers state and nationwide, to obtain additional resources for our students.   On the Donors Choose webpage, you can search by teachers or schools, or district or state.  Your donations are tax-deductible and greatly appreciated.  New projects are posted frequently, with busiest times during the first part of the school year, so check the Donors Choose site often.



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