Awards & Scholarships

Newbery and Caldecott Mock Elections Toolkit

For some people, autumn might be all about football or the first day of school o leaves changing color…but in the children’s book world, it’s Mock Awards Season! As the Newbery, Caldecott, and all the other Committees carry out their highly confidential tasks of selecting distinguished books, the rest of us wonder just what they’re thinking…and sometimes try to duplicate it with Mock Award events. Mock Awards programs are a long-time tradition. For decades, teachers, librarians, and other children’s literature experts have worked with kids and adults, in-person and online, in a few hours or over weeks or months, reading, discussing, and finally voting on some of the year’s best books. To help organizers develop effective programs, ALSC published the first Newbery & Caldecott Mock Election Kit, written by Kathleen Staerkel, Nancy Hackett, and Linda Ward Callaghan in 1994. A revised edition came out in 2001, and I just finished…

Guest Blogger

Sensory Storytime: Preschool Programming That Makes Sense for Children With Autism

Four times during October and November 2011, I’ll be offering a webinar on this topic for ALSC. If you’re debating whether or not to register for the webinar, I hope the following will help you decide. So, what is this all about? Here is the backstory: In early 2009 I was approached by the director of an organization in my community and asked to write a grant application for a library program that would serve kids with autism along with their “neurotypical” peers. In response, I designed a version of Sensory Storytime, and was awarded funding of more than $6,000.00 to start the program at The Ferguson Library in Stamford, CT. We began to offer this grant-funded program in the fall of 2009, and we are now beginning our third year. Designing this program allowed me to combine two things I knew well; library service for children and children with…