Blogger Katie Salo

Five Quick Tips for Book Displays

For the past few months at the library, it’s all about the book displays! I’ve been working on our new centralized display area, as well as some other face-out displays on acrylic holders. It’s been wonderful getting to work on displays again and I love promoting our materials this way! And now…I give you my five quick tips for book displays: Keep your sign short and sweet. I love being creative and creating display pieces, but I have recently adopted the idea of “less is more”. Since I manage so much more at this library than I did in times past, I love taking advantage of signs that are already pre-made or tweaking signs to serve my purpose. My library uses LibraryAware and I love it, but there are other sources such as Canva. Diversify your displays. Make sure that you’re reflecting your community in your book displays. I make…

Blogger Jonathan Dolce

We’ve Got the Power! – Bridging Last Summer with This Summer

The Children Of Fear Are Not Alone Last year’s summer reading theme was Build a Better World.  Its message must not be lost. I have been actively involved in Central Florida public libraries since 1993, and it had to have been one of the most rewarding themes – ever. Recent events are showing us that children are growing up in an increasingly frightening world.  And they must not bear this alone. Last summer, my co-workers and I took our show on the road with a message of hope, and I’d like to share how you can couple Libraries Rock with real social impact. Before that, though, let’s review a couple of things.   Power and Truth In 1927, Max Ehrmann wrote the poem Desiderata in which he wrote: “Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.” And, yet…

Blogger Katie Salo

My Year with the 2018 Caldecott Committee

Hi, ALSC blog friends! I can’t believe it’s been almost a year and a half since I’ve “seen” you/written a post. I’ve been very busy this past year, working with the rest of the 2018 Caldecott committee, but I’m eager to be back here on the blog. So, let me tell you ALL the secrets of my year with the Caldecott committee. (No, not any discussion secrets. Those will remain in the Governors Square 15 ballroom in Denver.) I will tell you the secrets to what I think made an incredibly successful year and committee: Make friends with your mailpersons. I let my regular mailperson know that I would be receiving a lot of packages this year, for the Caldecott committee. Since they knew it was important, they left a plastic US Postal Service bin over the packages on rainy days to protect them. Post-it notes. I should have invested…

Blogger Jonathan Dolce

Active Shooter – Run, Hide, Fight

Dedicated to the 17 people killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. On August 7, 2004, I sat down for a staff meeting at my library, and was completely caught off guard by some of the most shocking news of my entire life: one of my teen advisory board members had been involved in what would come to be known as the Deltona Massacre.  I was instantly crushed.  Between gasps, all I could say was, “He was just here”.  All I could think was what could I have done to prevent the senseless death of six teens. Walter Dean Myers’ book, Shooter had been out for three months.  Despite being a fantastic work of fiction by one of my favorite authors, I didn’t really find any answers there. I turned to the author Chris Crutcher via email, as I knew he was also a child psychologist.  He wasn’t happy…

Blogger Pamela Groseclose

How Can Libraries Connect with Tweens?

How do you build connections with tweens that motivates them to come to programming? Recently, my library started a monthly tween program. Every month, we highlight a program that the tweens request.  We collaborate with them to offer programs like Percy Jackson book club, a Descendants sing along, and animal STEAM events. These programs are targeted and planned by their peers, but attendance is low.   This year, I have been on a mission to up attendance and help my library’s tweens transition into our teen programs and events. I’ve tried fliers, outreach, and word of mouth. These things did help, but the biggest thing I have found that helps the most is to build relationships with tweens through reference interviews. Reader’s advisory is key. Not everyone that comes into our branches knows about our programs, but they usually come to the library for books. As a librarian this is…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Youth Media Awards #alamw18

There are not many reasons to get up at 7 am on a Conference day when your first meeting isn’t until 10 am, but then, not every morning is the Youth Media Awards! For those of you not there… allow me to paint a picture. Denver is cold– and the streets remain a bit icy, but yet hoards of library people are up and about– you wouldn’t need to consult your Scheduler, just follow the herd of people to a packed room. The room was abuzz with people chatting about their favorite books of the year and the excitement over what books might win! I had to search for my friend and my saved seat, but it was nearly impossible with all of the excited people. Once I found her, we started discussing predictions and just general excitement over what was to come! Every year I read the results as they…

ALA Midwinter 2018

USSBY Books at #alamw18

In all my years of ALA Conferences- I had never attended a USSBY Presentation- if you don’t know (I didn’t!) that acronym stands for United States Board on Books for Young People. I really liked this presentation because while so much of award selections are top secret, this was an opportunity for the committee to share their selections with the audience. The six presenters had copies of the books they were discussing and actually showed the audience the pages that delighted, inspired, or tickled their fancies! I also loved that they framed their book discussions around motifs that the books invoked for them! Themes like journies, surprise, loss of voice, and Motley Crews! It’s also always fun to see passionate people talk about books they are passionate about! They also created a super cool bookmark of the selected books! At the end of the panel discussion, talented illustrator (and author),…