Blogger Nina Lindsay

Diversity Jedi

Brick wall busted open

I value conferences most for their amazing conversations–the hallways are essentially a primordial Twitter, with threads going in multiple directions, between friends and strangers, for days.  A great way to spark those conversations, especially for introverts, are intriguing ribbons, and ALSC is always listening for phrases or ideas our members may want to don…for instance, by following popular hashtags. But we realized that the #DiversityJedi ribbons we shared on Twitter last week were not the best way to have this particular conversation.  #DiversityJedi is a more complicated concept than a ribbon can communicate, as commenters swiftly pointed out: “I get the sentiment, but If ALSC truly wants to recognize #diversityjedi work, they would not create a ribbon. They would show it through actions, in programming, publications, & policies. This work is imperative, but ribbons only appropriate and trivialize” @TeachChildLit “This is appropriation. This is hurtful. This is erasure. We named…

ALA Annual 2018

ALSC Charlemae Rollins President’s Program

ALSC Charlemae Rollins President's Program

As Annual Conference draws near, I invite you to the  2018 ALSC Charlemae Rollins President’s Program, “Considering All Children: A New Ideal in Evaluating and Engaging around Books for Youth” on Monday, June 25 2018, from 1pm-2:30pm at the Ernest Morial Convention Center Rm 260-262, or on Twitter at #ALSCAllKids. The canon of American literature for children upholds “quality” and “excellence,” emphasizing that young readers deserve the very best.  But who is deciding which books stand out? How are some critics and some children privileged in our field’s thinking? How are some dismissed or made invisible?

Diversity

Talking with Young Children (0-5) about Race

As youth serving librarians, we have a unique opportunity to build relationships and interact with young children and their families. This opportunity allows us to support families in many ways: building literacy skills, learning the importance of play, enjoying library programs, and of course much more.  Among the “much more” is the opportunity to speak with young children about race, to speak with caregivers about how to talk about race, and to model talking about race with children for their caregivers. It’s Never Too Early to Talk with Children about Race Research indicates both that children notice racial differences from a very young age (Winkler, 2009) and that if caregivers do not openly talk about race with children, children make up their own, often erroneous, meaning from what they see (Bigler, as cited in Dwyer, 2013). But, many caregivers/librarians/teachers, particularly white folks, are uncomfortable talking about race. They may feel…

Blogger Renee Grassi

Make it Okay: Mental Health Awareness Month

                            Did you know? One in five children today has a diagnosable mental health condition. One half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of fourteen. Nearly one in ten children have an anxiety disorder. 37% of students with a mental health condition ages fourteen and older drop out of school–the highest rate of any disability group. Why is mental health important to the work we do in libraries? Mental health is an essential part of children’s overall health and a key indicator for lifelong success. It has a complex relationship with kids’ physical health and their ability to succeed in school, at work and in society. However, if a child is experiencing a mental illness, a person can’t tell just by looking. If mental illness goes untreated, the implications are severe for the a child’s quality of…

Blogger Public Awareness Committee

Sights and sounds of Día

Bubbles, books, music, live creatures, families and so many smiles…these are the sights and sounds of Día de los niños, Día de los libros in San Francisco.  This is my last post as PAC Chair and I am dedicating it to Día, one of my favorite events inspired by the partnership of ALSC and REFORMA.   As a longstanding Día leader, San Francisco Public Library plays an essential role.  Maricela Leon-Barrera, SFPL’s Early Learning Coordinator, works all year planning, preparing, promoting and wrangling resources to connect children with books and delights.  On the heels of the 19th celebration, Maricela shares her insights.     Q:  What does Día mean to San Francisco families? Día is a unique celebration and an opportunity for families to enjoy time together and connect with other families in a safe and welcoming outdoor space. It’s truly a literacy themed street party for the entire family!…

Blogger Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers committee

Summer Reading for All!

Summer reading is almost here with all of the busy days, fantastic programs, and hours of summer learning that it brings. For almost everyone, the time for summer reading planning is over. Now, it’s all about execution. But before summer reading gets into full swing, take a step back and ask yourself: are the planned summer reading activities for everyone? Or, another way of looking at this question, are the current activities representative of the entire community? Incorporating more underserved communities into summer reading doesn’t have to mean a retooling of the entire summer reading calendar. Instead, a lot of progress can be made with relatively small efforts. One of the best ways can be to incorporate more diverse voices into SRP. This can mean subbing in a book at storytime or book club from an author whose background is typically underrepresented or making sure that diversity shows through in…

Awards & Scholarships

National Medal for Museum and Library Service

It has been a big, huge, enormous, gigantic, week at Rochester (MN) Public Library. After our second year of being named a finalist , we are honored to be a winner of the 2018 National Medal for Museum and Library Service from the Institute of Museum and Library Service! Let that soak in. And then read it again: We are honored to be a winner of the 2018 National Medal for Museum and Library Service from the Institute of Museum and Library Service! That is a great sentence, but it is nowhere near the whole story. This award is the result of years of listening to our community, living our strategic plan & core values, being agile, taking risks, failing, succeeding, measuring outcomes, and listening some more. We strive to increase equity by targeting services to those who have limited access due to language, finances, health, safety, literacy, or other…

Blogger Jonathan Dolce

CSK Every Day – Peace, Non-Violent Social Change + Brotherhood

Coretta Scott King April 27, 1927 – January 30, 2006 Women, if the soul of the nation is to be saved, I believe that you must become its soul.  — Coretta Today, we celebrate one of the greatest civil rights leaders who ever lived.  While Coretta Scott King was the wife of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, her works, efforts, and message resonate powerfully through history.  Her works continued almost four decades beyond her husband’s death.  Think on what you can do to keep her legacy alive. As public librarians serving tomorrow’s leaders, it is essential that we bring Coretta’s message to our youngest library patrons.  Weave her message into the fabric of our programming.  Committing to the path of the children’s librarian is not an act that we can carry out once and for all, but an act that must be renewed every day. Peace, Non-Violent Social Change…