The ERS Library's CheckThisOut! Multimedia Kit Subscription Service (CTO!) is FREE and available to all staff at our contracting sites. Once you sign up for CheckThisOut!, the ERS Library Team will begin curating monthly sets of materials, especially for you and your students. These kits, based on the criteria you select, will then be delivered to your campus. Four weeks later, we'll deliver a new kit and pick up the old one. Kits are available in August, September, October, November, and then January, February, March & April. December and May are PICKUP ONLY months as all materials must be returned to the ERS Library before winter & summer breaks.
|4-6 item kit||Material types, grade(s), reading level, and topic customization.|
|8-10 item kit||Material types, grade(s), reading level, and topic customization|
|Class Library kit||30 single copy fiction/nonfiction books by grade & reading level [NO topics]|
|NO KIT||For months when you don't want a kit delivered or emailed.|
If you prefer to receive only links to ERS Portal digital resources, please select only "Digital Resources from the ERS Portal" in the What types of materials are you interested in receiving? section. You will receive a monthly email containing 4-8 links to curated resources from the ERS Portal rather than a physical delivery to your site. Otherwise, you are welcome to select as many types of materials as you like.
When completing the sign-up form, you can choose which style of kit to receive each month. Feeling adventurous? Try them all!
Art Prints, Big Books, Board Books, Book Kits (SM/LG), Chapter Books, Digital Resources from the ERS Portal***, DVDs, Easy Readers, Fiction books, Graphic Novels, Non-fiction Books, Picture Books, Playaway Audiobooks, Professional Development Books, Puppets, Spanish/Bilingual materials, STEM Kits, and Storytelling Kits. The CTO! form allows you the select as many options as you like.
***Digital Resources from the ERS Portal will arrive via email. Included will be links to standards-aligned digital resources from Learn360, Discovery Education, TeachingBooks, World Book & Britannica Encyclopedias, ProQuest (Culture Grams, SIRS Discoverer, SIRS Issues Researcher, eLibrary & Research Companion), Gale (Opposing Viewpoints, Cameron's Collection, Camp Cameron) and others. The ERS Library’s digital resources support learning in grades K-12.
Note: If we feel certain an item is a good fit for the lesson ideas/topics you mention, you may occasionally receive material types that you did not request when signing up for CTO!.
No, CTO! is specifically for educators who want to arrange scheduled monthly deliveries. All staff at ERS Library contracting sites can log in to the ERS Portal and use the Follett Destiny Online Library Catalog to request items. These will be delivered to your site unless you notify us that you want to pick them up at our office.
**Click here for Step-by-step Instructions on Reserving Materials to be Delivered to Your Site**
Delivery dates for the entire school year are listed in the sign up confirmation email you receive after completing the CTO! form. The bottom of each monthly packing sheet also contains the delivery date for the following month.
The rule of thumb: from your start date you should receive a new kit (and return the old one) every 4 weeks -- not counting Thanksgiving, winter or spring breaks.
No, that's part of the surprise :D
CTO! kits are assembled 1-2 days before delivery and are based on what is available in the ERS Library at that time. Each of the 75+ kits we assembled & deliver each week is unique. Due to the nature of this type of kit curation, it is not possible to email preview lists ahead of time.
The Friday before a kit is due, you will receive an automated “ERS Library -- Items Due Next Week” email.
**You need to reply to this email.**
If you are done with the kit, reply with the word “PICKUP”.
If you are still using the kit, reply with the word “RENEW”.
A member of the ERS Library Staff will respond to your request with either pickup confirmation, the new due date for your kit, or to let you know if any items need to be returned as they were reserved by other educators. Be sure to have returning items in place by 9:00am on your designated delivery/pickup day.
Yes, absolutely. Our materials are meant to be used by both educators and students. Many of our participants have success with their students using a simple checkout form including the title of the book and who has it. We don't typically recommend allowing STEM kits or manipulative sets with many pieces to leave the classroom/school site.
If an item isn't returned to you by it's due date, please ask us to renew it. We are happy to extend the checkout of items if they haven't been requested by other patrons or if a little more time is required to locate a lost item. Missing items turn up in: student desks, the classroom library, and the school library. Occasionally ERS Library items get returned to the public library. 98% of the time missing items are found and returned.
For permanently lost or damaged items, we ask that you/the student arrange to replace the item or reimburse the ERS Library. Replace: locate a "Used - In Good Condition", like-copy of the same title from Amazon.com, a local source, or your own book collection and donate it to the ERS Library in place of the lost item. This is usually the least expensive option. Reimburse: all items in our catalog have a replacement cost noted in case they are lost or destroyed. This can be paid by phone using a credit/debit card or with cash/check left in an envelope at the pickup site. Contact our staff for more information.
While you can’t change your CTO! assigned delivery dates, you can adjust the topics you requested each month and you may want to switch your requested items to be delivered the previous month (e.g. if your August kit will be delivered on 8/29, request materials you’ll use in September).
Follow the directions in the "My lesson plans changed..." question above to edit your kit preferences.
Follow the directions in the "My lesson plans changed..." question above to edit your kit preferences. Once in the form with your original responses visible, you can switch each month's "Kit Type" selection between the 4-6 items, 8-10 items, Class Library, Digital Resources or NO KIT options. Make sure you save your changes when finished.
IMPORTANT: Changes must to be made prior to the date listed in the monthly descriptions. Any changes made after those dates will not be printed on the curation/packing sheets for our consideration.
|"I enjoy using CheckThisOut! to support my Social Studies and Science curriculum. I use my long term calendar to order for the whole year so I don't have to think about it. They just show up. I use the stories to introduce a topic or to just fill in extra time (if I have any-LOL). My favorite thing about CheckThisOut! is planning it all out at once and not having to think about it afterwards. It's like a gift I forgot all about that just shows up for me to use."
- K. Tracy, Kings River School, Kings River SD
|"I use CheckThisOut! as a great resource when looking for books for our students. I love the variety and great conversations that the books start. Best thing of all? The great titles!"|
- Linda S., Mark Twain Elementary, Corcoran USD
|"I request books which connect to our Unique Curriculum topic and/or our Thematics materials (Letter, Word, & Number of the week) for the month. I use the books in our daily read alouds or when introducing a lesson. The CheckThisOut! kit helps me front load my students with new material or connect to their prior knowledge. My students love books and the CheckThisOut! Kit helps keep my library new and interesting to my students. It also immerses them in our thematic materials and our monthly Unique Curriculum. It's a free and easy service to use that I love just as much as my students. All I have to do is request books at the beginning of the year and pick them up monthly at my site. Thank you for such a unique service!"
- J. Ciampi, Shelly Baird School, KCOE
Tulare County Office of Education
Tim A. Hire, County Superintendent of Schools
P.O. Box 5091
Visalia, CA 93278-5091