Blogger Nina Lindsay

Calling Everyday Advocates to National Library Legislative Day!

Nina Lindsay (right) visits with Bethany Hoglund (left) and Bernice Chang (center) at the Bellingham Public Library Children's Room

I’ve just returned from the Arbuthnot Honor Lecture, delivered by Naomi Shihab Nye in Bellingham WA.  You will hear more on this event soon, but you can check it out now on Twitter at #Arbuthnot2018 (and contemplate your application to be the host site for the 2019 lecture with Debbie Reese?  Applications close May 15th). During her talk, which will be published in Children and Libraries, Nye said that she encourages everyone to read obituaries, and shared a little about how many amazing people she has discovered through them. “We don’t have to look far for heroes; but we do have to remember how many there are.” This made me think of the amazing work each of you do every day, in your libraries.  While in Bellingham, I visited the Bellingham Public Library and was impressed at examples of what I know so many of you accomplish: maintaining library environments…

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 Elisabeth Gattullo Marrocolla

Hiring for Culture at #PLA2018

On the last morning of #PLA2018, I attended two excellent panels, both loosely related to staff development. While the idea of creating a leadership training program within my organization was intriguing, the program that has stuck with me in the days since #PLA2018 was the last one I attended – Hire for Fit: Best Practices for Hiring to Your Culture. Presented by panelists from Anythink Libraries, Jefferson County Public Libraries, and the City of Boulder Library & Arts, this program exemplified the power of PLA for me. It was hands-on, practical, fun, and best of all, incredibly useful. I’ve been proselytizing prioritizing culture when hiring to everyone who has had the pleasure of asking me how the conference was since I walked out of the room at the conclusion of the panel. The librarian representing Anythink, Susan Dobbs, began the presentation by telling the attendees that the values of her library…

Blogger Elisabeth Gattullo Marrocolla

Eliminating Fines and Fees on Children’s Materials at #pla2018

Why do libraries charge fines? Fines are a source of revenue, a chance to teach responsibility to our youngest patrons, and a way to encourage people to bring materials back on time. Or are they? What if it turned out that none of those assumptions were true? A new white paper (Https://goo.gl/rbwStj) looks at the available data and concludes that fines do not do any of those things, although librarians and patrons have deeply held beliefs that they do. At Eliminating Fines and Fees on Children’s Materials to Create a Win-Win for Your Community, my mind was blown by a study which showed that nominal library fees do not have ANY impact on overdue rates. Only steep fines result in more prompt return of material. Unless your library is willing to charge $5 a day on overdue picture books, the fines are not resulting in the timely return of your…

Blogger Elisabeth Gattullo Marrocolla

Talking is Teaching at #PLA2018

Librarians know that talking, singing, reading, writing, and playing with their children from birth can have dramatic impacts on the child’s development. Today at #PLA2018, San Francisco Public Library presented “Talking is Teaching: Opportunities for Increasing Early Brain and Language Development” with their early literacy partner, Too Small to Fail, an initiative of the Clinton Foundation.

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…

Call to Action

We LOVE Our Volunteers

Love is in the air! Can you feel it? I hope you can all feel the love that ALSC has for you. We are an association that could not function without the hard work, dedication, and passion of our volunteers. This past weekend many of our members were volunteering their time, talent, and treasures to conduct face-to-face committee work. At the same time, our virtual committees have also been hard at work sharing their same gifts to move the work of the association forward. Throughout the year, both groups are committed to the mission of ALSC. For all this work, I say thank you! Each year, I send out many Valentine’s Day cards to family and friends as an unexpected gesture to let them know I love and appreciate them. Although I can’t personally send each and every one of you a physical card, please consider this post my virtual…

ALA Midwinter 2018

Wrapping up my 1st Midwinter #alamw18

And… it’s a wrap! My first Midwinter experience is officially done! It’s been a super quick five days in Denver. I have had some highs– Bill Morris Seminar, talking storytime, attending my first council session, and many more; and some lows– icy streets, SNOW, way overpacked bags.But all in all, it was a wonderful and illuminating experience to attend the infamous Midwinter Conference. My takeaways: ~Midwinter is mostly meetings and there is not much program– but it is a chance to really get to know committees and what they do. There are also lots of OPEN meetings where you can just drop in and hear about a division or round table. ~Attendance is a lot lower at Midwinter– according to Council documents we were about a thousand people less than last year in Atlanta… and while that may be disappointing to vendors, it is a great opportunity to network! You see…