AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Growth Mindset

I attended the Early Learning with Families development training this May. This meeting focused on two subjects: Elements of Playtime and Growth Mindset. This blog will refer to Growth Mindset. Growth Mindset Think about the term “mindset.” Now, think about the way people perceive themselves in terms of their intelligence, talents, and personal potential. Dr. Carol Dweck compares fixed mindset and growth mindset when assessing the responses people give to a frustrating experience in her book Mindset.  According to Dweck, people with a fixed mindset find it difficult recovering from failure. Moreover, they feel they deserve the poor experience for being foolish or just because life is unfair and there isn’t much they can do to change bad experiences. On the other hand, Dweck reports that people with a growth mindset see failure as an opportunity to learn and try things differently next time. [1] [1]See Dweck (2006) especially the…

Blogger Kathia Ibacache

STEM: Leadership Tips When you Get Coding Bots Out

STEM can overwhelm some librarians. However, do not despair. There are some organizational ideas and leadership tips worth trying if you are willing to give coding bots a try. After a year of an introductory STEM programs at the Simi Valley Public Library, it was time to spice this program up with a new element. Why not buy bots to teach kids computational thinking through basic coding? The idea became a proposal and with minor changes the proposal became a reality. We purchased two of the following four bots: Wonder Dash, Coji, Ozobot, and the Robot Mouse, to implement a year’s worth of monthly STEM programs focusing on coding. Wonder Dash and Azobot: are fine bots for kids 6+. Here children will be practicing coding at a basic and intermediate level if they dare to explore all the potential of these bots. Coji and the Robot Mouse: are convenient bots…

AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Do You Ever Say “No”?

Do you ever say “no” to your patrons? This question has haunted public libraries since we adopted the contemporary business model that states “the client is always right.” Moreover, it is part of the common core of public libraries to offer as much welcoming a place for our customers as we can provide. However, what happens when a customer is infringing into the positive experience of another client? More interestingly, how do we respond to this infringement when the parties involved are caregivers? It’s time to use redirection in public libraries. Redirection in Public Libraries As a Youth Services Librarian, I have worked with our Library’s staff to use redirection when witnessing in older children a behavior that might disrupt the library experience of other patrons. In other words, we avoid saying “no.” Instead, we use a narrative that help us reach the desired behavior using redirection and using positive…

Blogger Kathia Ibacache

Professional Goals and Your Performance

Images: Courtesy of Pixabay.com Did you achieve all your professional goals in 2017? Workplace goals are hard to define sometimes. Even for high achievers, setting realistic goals is more troublesome than we would like to admit. Other people might find setting goals a waste of efforts as they are not really met. Below you will find some tips to make your goals process more effective and valuable to yourself and your library. How does it work? Our library adopted the 4×20 Performance Evaluation design by which each one of us had to generate one or more Company, Library, and Professional goals. Once goals were set, staff had to meet four times for twenty minutes with their supervisors to discuss progress, changes, and completion of goals. During my first 4×20 progress chat with my library director, I realized some of my goals were too broad and thus not realistic. So I…

Blogger Kathia Ibacache

Children & Teens: Cross Collaboration

Have you thought about the benefits of cross collaboration among libraries? Do you belong to a collective of libraries that meet to share library trends and new ideas for children and teen services? Simi Valley Public Library is part of the Meet & Greet group, which is a collective of seven public libraries from different library systems that meet every three months. What do we do? Share library trends for children and teen services that have worked for us. Share innovative program ideas. Share ideas for tween spaces. Discuss books that have impacted us. Discuss ideas to advertise our collections. How do we do it? We meet in different locations every time, depending on the hosting library. The idea is to end with a library tour focusing on the Teen and Kid’s space and learn from the hosting library. Our meetings are in the morning. The hosting library usually offers…

Blogger Kathia Ibacache

Operation: Get the Books Out

How are your Circulation numbers doing? Are your books leaving your library? Simi Valley Pubic Library set up a circulation goal of 21,500 item checkouts for December 2017, just slightly higher than our numbers for December 2016. Interestingly, our December checkouts tend to be less than November, even when important Holidays fall in December. Thus, when it comes to “Operation: Gets the Books Out” we must be intentional, we want to be motivated, and we want to go the extra mile. Use your shelf space as much as you can It will be easier for library users to grab books that are readily available. Caregivers with small children will appreciate your shelf displays, since there is not much time to make a book search.           Use table displays located at strategic locations Book displays can have a variety of related subjects. For example, you can display…

ALA Annual 2017

Alaac2017 Hillary: Beyond your Politics

Hillary Clinton closed the 2017 ALA Chicago Conference. Regardless of political affiliations and personal opinions on controversial issues, the audience listened to a tremendously well spoken orator. She knows exactly how to deliver a speech without reading a script and enunciates every word with the right amount of volume and oral determination. Mrs. Clinton invited us to foster critical thinking, promote rational evidence, and be guardians of the First Amendment. Furthermore, she prompted us to stand against censorship adding that we should read  books that challenge us. She praised librarianship as the life savers of communities especially the rural and underserved ones and she called to us to defend the truth and reason based on evidence. In her words “one book at a time, one library at a time.” Her speech reached the climax as she reminded us that books free societies and librarians make a difference beyond political parties….