Blogger Library Service to Special Population Children and their Caregivers

Everybody Move It!

Chances are, you already incorporate physical games and movement activities into your programming for all ages.  But have you thought about strategies to make these program elements accessible for everyone?  Keep in mind that physical disabilities don’t always present themselves visibly, so whether you think you’ve got individuals in your community who would benefit from accommodations or not, best practice involves erring on the side of inclusion.  The great news is that making adjustments doesn’t require re-planning tried and true programs. For some expert advice on offering inclusive physical movement activities, I often look to physical education teachers.  Both in-person and online sources can offer information, ideas, and insight.  Reach out to a physical education teacher in your area, or check out one of these online sources for tips as you plan your next program: Let’s Play Together! A fun and simple guide to conduct inclusive games for all This…

Blogger Library Service to Special Population Children and their Caregivers

Play Café: Storytime & Special Populations

Have you ever prepped for a storytime and no one has shown up? Have you tried a new flyer, a new day, a new time — and still no traction? You read blog posts with tips for crowd control and think, Must be nice… I feel you, friend. In the Oakland Public Library system, some branches regularly pack the room while others sing “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” to, well, crickets. But we know there are toddlers in the neighborhood — strollers are everywhere.  A David and Lucile Packard Foundation study told us that caregivers in our community are looking for the things storytime can provide: networking and community building, early literacy support, all in a safe, free environment. Clearly our message wasn’t working. So we made some changes. We stopped saying “Storytime,” which is meaningful in some communities but was insider jargon in ours. We renamed it “Play Café,” a…

Blogger Library Service to Special Population Children and their Caregivers

Housing Community Outreach

My library is currently serving 16 Child Care Centers on a bimonthly basis and are hoping to start reaching our children and their families in a new way. We are working on a program where we provide storytimes, early literacy workshops and play programs at a housing community in our service area. We would ideally  provide a small collection of gift and donation books that can be used by the community I reached out to a fellow librarian who has done some community based outreach to ask a few questions. Me: Describe your program including population served and services provided. Cammy: STAR (Summertime Access to Reading) was created by School Board Chairwoman, Carrie Coyner. Little Free Libraries (LFL) were planted all over the county and filled with books to insure that children within neighborhoods have constant access to books. Each LFL also had community events through the summer. My library…

Blogger Library Service to Special Population Children and their Caregivers

The ALSC/Candlewick Press “Light the Way: Outreach to the Underserved” Grant is now open!

For many public libraries, grants are a vital revenue stream. And when funding is limited, grants become highly competitive. Every library and even every grant writer has their own strategy. I encourage everyone to try their hand at grant writing, even if you’ve never written one before. As the facilitator of your program, you are best equipped to tell that program’s story, and convey your library’s need.