Blogger Katie Salo

Scarves in Storytime

If you don’t use scarves in storytime, I’m going to (hopefully) change your mind with this blog post. But first! Read Abby Johnson’s 2016 ALSC blog post Scarves in Storytime to get a scarves primer down. Welcome back! (You did go read Abby’s post, right?) Abby did an amazing job covering the basics of using scarves in storytime, answering questions like: “How do you hand scarves out?”, “What do you do with them?”, and “How do you put scarves?”. But what about questions regarding Using Scarves in Storytime 201? How do you keep scarves clean? A time-honored, important question to ask. After every storytime, our scarves are washed in a washing machine. Here at the library, our washing machine is a top-loader, so I do use a delicates bag to protect the delicate fabric of our scarves. After a wash, they’re line-dried on a clothesrack. If your library doesn’t have…

Blogger Children and Technology Committee

Where to Find Free Children’s eBooks

Photo instructions for the hand movements to the rhyme "baa baa black sheep" and

It seems like even the family cat has access to a device, so it’s no surprise that even our youngest readers are utilizing eBooks. While our library collections are full of exciting new content (read along ebooks, beginning readers, and picture books to name just a few), sometimes nothing hits the quality reading spot quite like sharing a classic title. And best of all, there’s no such thing as a holds queue when reading classics with a free and legal public domain download. Where can I find free titles? So many books, so little time! You want to make sure you’re using yours effectively. Whether you’re reading on a phone, tablet, dedicated e-reader, or desktop computer you’ll find more than enough titles for your “for later” list. You’ll find public domain titles on multiple sites, so it’s really all about the reading experience. It’s a bit like choosing your phone’s operating…

Blogger Kaitlin Frick

Sensory Storytime: Tips and Tricks for a Successful Program

Have you been considering offering sensory storytimes at your library or doing outreach to a school serving children with developmental delays? Maybe the reason you’ve hesitated is because you feel unprepared. I get it: Sensory storytime can seem intimidating, with its own particular structure and style. But this is an incredibly important area of service for any library to undertake, reaching children who often otherwise feel unwelcome in a storytime space.

Guest Blogger

Keep the Kids from Fighting in the Back Seat or Podcasts for Kids

The ALA Annual Conference is full of inspiration, networking, and ideas. It is also overwhelming. It usually takes me a few weeks to process everything I’ve heard and learned. One session I’ve been thinking a lot about was “Kids Listen: Podcasts Amplify Engagement and Learning.” My library has had a podcast for several years. We are up to Episode 103! While not exclusively for kids, we occasionally have episodes with a kid audience in mind or that are about children’s materials or programs. We are fortunate to have a great audio engineer on staff, Benny, who makes us sound professional. At the beginning we had the lofty goal of producing a podcast every two weeks. Yeah, that didn’t happen. One of the main things I got out of the session was validation that podcasts take a lot of time to produce and I shouldn’t feel bad that we are not…

Guest Blogger

The Magic of “The Science of Breakable Things” by Tae Keller

As I comb through the books I’ve read in 2018, I keep returning to the Middle Grade novel “The Science of Breakable Things” by Tae Keller. It has been a good while since a children’s book has made such an impression on me.  In addition to being a clever and heartwarming story, it touches on themes rarely explored in Middle Grade fiction.  I think about how I would have reacted if I had read it as a child.  I imagine how validated and safe I would have felt.

Blogger Jamie Campbell Naidoo

A Hive of Activity: Board Updates, Committees, and Volunteers

ALSC’s Busy Worker Bees What’s that sound? Do you hear it? Sounds like a buzz or maybe a hum. If you think it is a colony of busy bees you are 100% correct – ALSC Member Busy Worker Bees! With summer reading in full force and school (public and university) starting for others, ALSC members are hard at work engaging their communities to build healthy, successful futures for all children. At the same time, hundreds of you are also serving on ALSC process and award committees, moving the association’s work forward. In July many process committee members began new appointments and these committees started examining current and future projects to prioritize their work. I have been hearing from committees about some of their work and reading with interest the blog posts of various committees. As always, I’m amazed and humbled to be working alongside all of you – our awesome…

ALSC Online Courses

ALSC Resources for Everyone

I am currently serving my second year on ALSC’s Membership Committee. It’s been an enlightening experience, and I’m so excited to see what the next year will bring. When I first began my tenure, I was under the impression that our duties consisted only of sending out welcoming postcards to new members and planning the ALSC 101 meeting for the Annual Conference. Yes, we do both of these (and they’re both awesome!), but since then, I’ve discovered that we do so much more.