Welcome to the McMurray Library


     Watch this inspiring conversation between two students and author Jason Reynolds recorded on February 26.

    Attend a free virtual exhibit of art, ideas, and prompts from several YA authors titled "Art as Protest/Art in the Time of Covid." 

    Image result for black history month

    NEW: McMurray's Mosaic of Black Artists

    As we know, one powerful way to explore history is by recognizing and learning from multiple voices and stories. Since the earliest cave paintings, human beings have been telling their stories through visual and performing arts. What stories people choose to tell and how they tell them is an essential expression of their humanity and an authentic record of their lived experiences.  

    It is through this lens that celebrate Black History Month. We will have an opportunity to see and hear different Black American artists express their lived experiences through a rich mosaic of artistic forms: visual arts, dance, music, and writing. The pieces of this mosaic are brief videos that spotlight not only racial injustice, but also dignity, joy, and hope. 

    Our five-week focus on Black artists’ voices and stories is an essential action toward advancing awareness and commitment to Black lives, past, present, and future. In the words of Alicia Garza, co-founder of the international Black Lives Matter movement, “We want to see a world where Black lives matter in order for us to get to a world where all of our humanity is respected.”

    Week 1: Black American Visual Artists 

    Week 2: Black American Artists Working in (1) Street Art, (2) Multiple Forms, (3) Textiles, and (4) Photography

    Week 3: Black American Dancers and Musicians

    Coming next week:

    Week 4: Black American YA Writers and a Few Legendary Black American Writers

    NEW: Black Liberation Reading Lists 

    Reading list for teens

    Reading list for kids (includes middle school books)

    NEW: Social Justice Booklists

    Here are more than 70 carefully selected lists of multicultural and social justice books for children, young adults, and educators.

    NEW: Author Fan Face-Off Series

    Fan Face-Off pits a book fan against a book author in a 10-minute, Jeopardy-like face-off. The YouTube series is the brainchild of YA author Steve Sheinkin, who came up with the idea of superfan readers quizzing authors on their own books. In an interview in School Library Journal, Sheinkin expresses his hope "that kids and fans will play along, so it will be not so much the kid on screen, but you--the watcher--against the author."

    The series has recorded shows with great authors, including Katherine Applegate, Stuart Gibbs, Jennifer Holm, Cece Bell, Adam Gidwitz, Pablo Cartaya, Tom Angleberger, Nic Stone, Victoria Jamieson, Kenneth Oppel, Kate Messner, and many others. 

    Latinx Kidlit Book Festival 

    Latinx Kidlit Book Festival

    What is it?

    Latinx Kidlit Book Festival is a free online celebration of Latinx authors, illustrators, and books. Click on the link and check it out!

    When is it?

    The online festival was December 4th and 5th, but the sessions were recorded, so you can attend any of the sessions at a time that suits you. ENJOY! 

    Homework Help

    Tutor.com is an excellent free resource for homework help that you can access with your KCLS student account. One-on-one, live tutoring is available from 2 pm to midnight daily. If you'd like some help with any type of homework, this might be just the help you need! Here's the link (link in Spanish); you will need your KCLS student account number and password. (See KCLS video tutorial in the section below if you need help identifying your KCLS student account number and password.) 

    Here's some additional information about Tutor.com

    Tutor.com: How It Works

    Tutor.com: Spanish How It Works

    Tutor.com: Top 10 Facts

    Tutor.com: Spanish Top Ten Facts


    Library and Book Information 

    Library Book Checkout During Remote Learning 

    Students are able to check out books remotely from the McMurray Library on designated days through humanities classes (6th and 7th grade) and through designated library Google Meet times (8th graders) with the librarian. Families can pick up the books at the Vashon High School HUB, the district-wide drop off/pick up location for school materials. The HUB hours are Monday-Friday 8:30-9:15, 11:00-1:00, and 2:00-4:00. Please feel free to contact Julie Jaffe at jjaffe@vashonsd.org if you have any questions or need additional information.

    Please take a look at this brief slideshow that explains book checkout at McMurray.

    • Library Book Returns 

    Books can be returned at the Vashon High School HUB, the district-wide drop off/pick up location for school materials. The HUB hours are Monday-Friday 8:30-9:15, 11:00-1:00, and 2:00-4:00. In order to distinguish our school library books from public library books, look for a barcode on the book that includes the name of the school and/or a school name stamped on the inside of the book or on the outer edges of the book. Please feel free to contact Julie Jaffe at jjaffe@vashonsd.org if you have any questions or need additional information.

    • Library Tutorials  

    Follett Destiny video tutorial from Ms. Jaffe (Follett Destiny gives students and staff access to the McMurray Library catalog.)

    KCLS Student Account video tutorial from Ms. Jaffe explaining how to access and use this account. Watch this brief additional video tutorial that completes the explanation.

    KCLS Student Account video tutorial from KCLS explaining how to access and use this account.

    Video de las cuentas de estudiante en español

    • Other Book Resources 

     Little Free Libraries are located in front of McMurray and Vashon High School. Books are free and for all ages K-12, with some adult books as well. Book donations are accepted and can be placed in the bin in front of McMurray.

    Genre Book Lists for 7th Grade Humanites (or anyone!)

    informational books

    biography, autobiography, memoir

    historical fiction


    science fiction

    poetry: realistic fiction and historical fiction written in verse (poetic form)

    poetry: nonfiction books written in verse (poetic form)  

    Cool Videos About Books and Authors

    Be sure to look through the entire ever-expanding list!

    Additional Cool Resources

    Jason Reynolds: "Write. Right. Rite" Series

     A Live Reading of Neil Gaiman's Coraline, hosted by NY Public Library (scroll to bottom of page to see all chapters) 

    Library of Congress Resources for Family Engagement

    KNKX Take the Mic: We are living through an extraordinary time and what will help all of us get through it is sharing our stories. And that includes YOUR story! KNKX would like to get more voices of kids and teens on the air.

     WORLD Channel/PBS Learning Home Learning 

    McMurray Library

    Thank You, PIE, for Your Generous Support of Our School Libraries

    One powerful trait that steers us toward life-long learning is curiosity, and a resource-rich library plays a central role in cultivating this trait. The number of distinctive science-related books currently being published for young adults is impressive. Middle school students gravitate toward these informative and inspiring books, and many students who prefer nonfiction are especially drawn toward them. Every day, McMurray students deepen on discover an interest while exploring the books on our shelves. We are grateful for PIE's ongoing support.


    The library is open 30 minutes before school (7:30) and 30 minutes after school (3:15). It also is open during one lunch period each day. It is open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for 7th and 8th graders, and it is open Tuesday and Thursday for 6th graders. 
    Loan Period 
    Students may have up to 10 items checked out at any one time; the loan period is three weeks. Students may renew materials they need for longer than three weeks; they just need to bring the book or magazine to the library in order to renew it. This policy helps students keep track of the materials they borrow. A student may check out library materials as long as he or she doesn’t have any overdue (or lost) items. If the student has an overdue item, it’s a simple matter of returning it or bringing it to the library to renew it in order to check out additional items. There are no fines for overdue books; however, students are responsible for lost or damaged materials.