A staple of children’s libraries, book clubs encourage reading, analysis and thoughtful discussion. They provide wonderful opportunities to delve into novels of substance and help groups of kids tackle challenging questions about books and life. At my library, we offer a slate of school-age book clubs, for ages ranging from 3rd to 7th grade, including discussions for children and adults together. But many reliable library programs benefit from change, and over the past few years, we have seen some shifts in the materials and approaches we use, especially incorporating more nonfiction and comics formats in what had once been a stronghold for the middle grade novel. This year, we’ve decided to increase our focus on other forms of literacy beyond textual comprehension. After a wonderful Whole Book Approach workshop at the Darien Library’s annual KidLib Unconference, we have reimagined one of our regular afterschool programs to focus on visual literacy….
Do fines keep people away from the library? My personal and unscientific personal analysis is that yes, they do. Why do people avoid the library when they have accumulated fines? Some are embarrassed. Some don’t have the financial ability to pay. Others may not understand the avenues for resolving a library fine and then just avoid the library when their fines reach an unpayable (or blocked) amount.
We recently completed the yearlong East Lyme Public Library iMovie Makers Project which was a series of 15 filmmaking programs for tweens. The purpose of the Project was for tweens to learn how to tell stories through moviemaking.
I’ve been thinking about leadership a lot lately as the Managing Children’s Services Committee has played a role in the ALSC Mentoring Program. I’m always blown away by the quality of people we have working in the children’s department, and equally surprised that we don’t have even more children’s librarians who are moving up into management positions.
“Want to wear a costume in a graveyard and be in a movie?” On a recent vacation to New England, I was asked if I’d like to make a little day trip to Boston to help out with a literacy project my friend Kirsten was working on. It was going to happen in a graveyard. I got to wear a costume. I got to hang out with people who love, promote, and write kid’s books. How could I say no?
If your library attended any outreach events at Back to School nights, or you have a school age child, you are probably hearing a lot about joining your local Parent Teacher Organizations. However, have you considered joining the PTA of the schools your library serves?
There are two big book adaptations coming to the #kidlit and #YA worlds in the next few months. Movie adaptations are a huge driver of print circulation in the library so its important to be aware of what’s coming out on the big screen.
In the coming months the ALSC Advocacy and Legislation committee will be highlighting resources which may be useful to you in your advocacy efforts. Today’s resources is Take Action for Libraries, found right on the ALA website.