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…

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…

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

A Librarian’s Open Letter to Jacqueline Laurita

Hi Jacqueline, First off, I have a confession to make. I have never watched an episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, nor have I watched any of the Real Housewife series or spin offs.  It’s just not my cup of tea. In fact, there are probably many other librarians out there who share my opinion. And that’s perfectly okay because that’s not why I’m writing this open letter to you today. This is not the first time a children’s librarian used this blog before to broadcast their message to a celebrity. In 2012, I fangirled my adoration for Glee’s Chris Colfer for writing a book and encouraging children to read.  That same year, Susan Baeir penned an open letter to Kourtney Kardashian about how she admired Kourtney’s commitment to reading and literacy in raising her son. I’m not sure if you, Chris Colfer, and Kourtney Kardashian share many things in…

Blogger Renee Grassi

Improving Outcomes for Children with Disabilities in Libraries

When libraries are looking to improve an area of service, such as service to children with disabilities and their families, it’s important to start with answering the question–why? It seems like a simple question with a simple answer. Libraries should serve children with disabilities because libraries are for everyone.  It’s the right thing to do. It’s in the spirit of public libraries as public institutions, which are for all. All of these statements are absolutely true, but sometimes it’s not enough to justify the existence of a new collection, program, or service.  So, let’s consider other reasons why libraries should serve children with disabilities and their families. First and foremost, it’s the law. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990.  The ADA makes it illegal to discriminate against people with disabilities in jobs, schools, transportation, and all experiences that are open to the public.  In…

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…

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…