Blogger School-Age Programs and Service Committee

Meeting the Social and Emotional Needs of Children

SEL – three little letters that encompass so much! According to the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), “Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships and make responsible and caring decisions.”1


Intellectual Freedom ALA Annual Conference Roundup

The ALA Annual Conference for 2021 was held virtually from June 23-29. Incapsulated in this post a few intellectual freedom issues presented at the conference.  Program Highlights “Can I wear or say that? Free speech in the workplace,” sponsored by the Office of Intellectual Freedom, included speakers, Theresa Chmarar, general counsel for the Freedom to Read Foundation; Douglas S. Zucker, Esq., partner, the Weiner Law Group LLP; and Sarah Houghton, Director of Discovery and Delivery, California Digital Library. Issues of the differences between private and publicly funded organizations with respect to employer/employee relations and what each can or cannot do were addressed. As one would expect, managers in private organizations can impose just about any dress/speech restrictions they so choose as long as the policies do not discriminate between sexes or impact religious practice. Public institutions (such as public libraries) are protected by the US Constitution but, in general, employers can…



CW: Ann Magill, designer of the Disability Pride flag, recently wrote, “It has recently come to my attention that, even with desaturated colors, this flag design can, when viewed online (especially while scrolling), create a strobe effect, and pose a risk for people with epilepsy, and migraine sufferers. I (and others) are currently working on a safe alternative.” A visual of the Disability Pride flag is included in this post. Did you know that July is National Disability Pride Month? Thursday marks the 31-year anniversary of the signing into law of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits discrimination against disabled people and guarantees that people with disabilities have the same opportunities as non-disabled people. But how accessible are our classrooms and school libraries? Are we keeping disabled patrons in mind as we plan public library programs, both in-person and virtual? Last summer, ALSC released a Virtual Storytime Services…

Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

Early Childhood Program Plans for Fall 2021

Last week, I posted a link on ALA Connect to a very informal Google Forms survey to collect some data on plans for early childhood programming for this coming fall, and also shared it with heads of children’s departments here in Suffolk County, NY. So far 40 people have filled out the survey! Thank you all so much for providing this data, an overview of which I’ll be sharing in this post.   Concerns about what conditions we’ll be facing this coming fall are on everyone’s minds as we plan programs and services for the remainder of 2021. As of the time of this post, children under 12 are still not eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This, combined with concerns about the continuing spread of the Delta variant, has many library staff thinking about how to offer safe and engaging programs for our youngest patrons and families as we move…

Blogger Chelsey Roos

Help Me, Judy Blume: In search of puberty stories for young readers

A girl of about eleven or twelve walked up to my desk and asked if I could recommend some books to her. “I really like Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret,” she said. “Great!” I said. “Do you want more books by Judy Blume, or just other books like that one?” “Other books like that one,” she confirmed. We started walking up and down the stacks. I pulled a book off the shelf with a Judy Blume vibe, gave her a brief description, and then watched her face as she tried to keep up a polite smile.

Guest Blogger

Getting Ready for Summer Reading during a pandemic

Our educational and hybrid strategy for Tails and Tales  Summer reading is more important than ever this year as librarians are looking to create programs that combine technology, print resources and personal interaction to offer multiple access points for kids to enjoy educational, fun and safe activities through their local library. And, while we all want summer reading to be a huge success, it goes without saying that planning during a pandemic is quite a challenge!

Blogger Public Awareness and Advocacy Committee

Passive Programs in a Time of Transition

More of our patrons are getting vaccinated against Covid-19 and our library systems are slowly easing back to normal operating hours and codes of conduct. Children’s librarians are still walking a tightrope of safely providing services while dealing with the reality that our charges (children ages 0-12 years old) are not able to get vaccinated yet. Outdoor programming is great for families that can make it work for their schedules and register far enough in advance to avoid being put on a waitlist. However most of my families do not fit into that category. This summer my library has maintained our focus on “take and make” crafts and projects, and put an increased amount of effort into creating engaging passive programs that families can participate in during their brief visits to pick up books and report summer reading challenge points.

Awards & Scholarships

Final Call for Children’s Literature Lecture Award Nominations

The Children’s Literature Lecture Award Committee is seeking suggestions for our 2023 honoree. The lecturer may be an author, critic, librarian, historian, or teacher of children’s literature, of any country, who shall prepare a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature. The lecture will be given in April or May of 2023 at a site to be chosen next year. ALSC members are welcome to send suggestions to the committee for consideration. Please send your proposed lecturer(s), with supporting rationale for each recommendation. The nomination form is available online and the deadline for submissions is July 31. Recent past lecturers include Pat Mora, Maurice Sendak, Dr. Debbie Reese, Andrea Davis Pinkney, and Peter Sis. The complete list of past lecturers is on the ALSC website. The 2023 lecturer will be announced at the 2022 ALA LibLearnX next January in San Antonio. For more details…