Blogger Managing Children's Services Committee

Managers: Not Just for People

Being a manager or supervisor comes with a host of responsibilities, and one I’ve been thinking about lately is managing physical space. Whether it’s ensuring communal work spaces are staying organized, or paying attention to the cleanliness of your shelves and room, managers need to remember that they’re the leaders of the place in addition to the people. This doesn’t mean you should take it upon yourself to clean up a messy staff workroom every Friday, but you should set expectations about levels of organization. For example, does your staff take several weeks to return program materials (markers, crayons, tablecloths) back where they belong? If so, it’s time to ask that items be put away no more than a few days after a program. Do you notice that a bin labeled “glue sticks” or “scissors” seems to have also accumulated yarn or stickers? Make it clear that materials should go…

Blogger Claudia Wayland

Museum passes

This month I am thinking about the trend of public libraries offering museum passes for check out. The idea is to partner with local museums and other fun, family-friendly, educational and/or cultural places and create an agreement that allows the library to circulate day passes to the partnering institutions. From the small amount of research I’ve done, I see there are many ways to go about doing this. Some libraries are high-tech and have web portals that allow patrons to print off museum passes from any computer. Some libraries have actual tickets that circulate like any other physical materials in the collection. Does your library have circulating museum passes? Do the tickets allow an entire family in to a facility for free? Do the tickets cover any kind of additional fees (like parking)? Here are some examples of this kind of service – this is just a few, there are…

Blogger Stacy Dillon

Reading Resolutions

It’s that time of year when our thoughts turn to our “to-read” piles.  How do we decide what we are going to read in the coming days, weeks and months? In our field, we often come across many different kinds of reading challenges.  When we are reflective in our practice, we will notice to holes in our own reading lives, and many of us will feel like we need to do a better job to round out our genres/authors/styles. This year I have decided NOT to give myself a reading goal. This has less to do with the fact that I am entering into a committee year as much as it has to do with cutting myself some slack. There are so many books to read. I happen to be a member of goodreads and sitting in my “to read”queue are 379 titles. This is an unreachable number, and there will…

Awards & Scholarships

Student-to-Staffers: Where are you now?

ALA Student-to-Staffers: Where are you now? Way back in June of 2007, I had the honor of representing TWU’s School of Library and Information Science at ALA Annual in Washington, DC.  I was a member of ALA’s Student-to-Staff (S2S) Program, with assignment to the ALSC Division.  If you’ve never heard of the S2S program, you can read about it here.  There are 56 active ALA Student Chapter Groups at accredited graduate schools.  Each is entitled to submit one name for consideration for the program.  Schools have varying criteria. My school chose the student – me 🙂 based on an essay contest.  Others have different criteria, but the end result is that 40 promising students receive a free trip to ALA Annual in exchange for working with  ALA staff during the week.  I was able to choose with whom I wanted to work. An aspiring children’s librarian, naturally, I chose ALSC. It was my first connection with…

Blogger Claudia Wayland

Organizing Easy Readers

Let’s talk best practices for organizing easy or beginning readers. I mean the books used by new readers to facilitate print word recognition. The easy reader collection is difficult to browse. Not easy! There are as many leveling systems as there are publishers that use different letters, numbers, or colors depending on the series; sometimes a level 1 is harder than something marked as a level 2 or 3. This makes parents and new librarians confused when browsing the collection. How can we simplify things? I am looking to you for help! Give me some ideas of how your library treats the not-so-easy-to-browse easy reader collection. Help me (and maybe others) in future decision making by answering the following questions in the comments: Does your library separate materials in the easy reader section using a leveling system? How easy is it to browse the easy reader collection in your library?…

AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

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

It’s grant writing time, and for many public libraries, grants are the main driver of funding for new and existing programs. It’s a stressful time, both for those writing the grants, and those awarding them. The best advice I can give is to be selective! Research what grants are available to you, and make sure what you’re asking for fits the selection criteria of the grant being awarded. Once you’ve identified a grant that matches your needs, review previous grant winners to see if you can identify what made that winning program stand out from the rest of the applicants. Also, work with your program staff to be sure your information is up to date and relevant. Avoid rhetoric and hyperbole. Try to provide anecdotes and testimonies that demonstrate need or previous success. Be specific about outputs and outcomes. The proposal should explicitly state expected practical, tangible outputs. Don’t be…