By all accounts celebrations of El día de los niños/El día de los libros were fabulous this year. In spite of budget cutbacks and lower staffing levels, as many or more libraries celebrated bilingual reading this year as celebrated last year! But whether you hosted a Día event or not, don’t rest now.
To get a sense of what went on this year and begin to prepare for the upcoming year, visit Pat Mora’s website and click on the short video to hear directly from Día’s founder about the 15th Anniversary activities. In her presentation, Mora reminds us that through Día we are trying to link all children to books, language, and culture. She mentions that we may have originally thought of Día as being a one day celebration, primarily to encourage bilingualism in English and Spanish. However, through various Día activities and programs we hope to encourage children to hear and read many languages and discover that all languages are beautiful. A new Día booklist, helps librarians find exciting books like A Place Where Sunflowers Grow/Sabaku ni saita himawari by Amy Lee-Tai (English/Japanese) or Line and Circle/lakeer aur gole by Radhika Menon (English/Hindi) that can be incorporated into world language storytimes. The downloadable brochure includes space for libraries to personalize the booklist before printing.
While it is wonderful to hear about all of the great programs from this year, it’s also time to begin thinking about the Día activities and programs you can do in your library throughout the year. As you begin to plan, add two continuing education opportunities to your ALA Annual Conference schedule. On
Saturday, June 25 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. ALSC will sponsor Beyond Fiestas, Calaveras and Quinceañeras. This program (MCC-Rm 274) will be highly interactive and help librarians add contemporary Latino themes to programs throughout the year
through high-quality literature. One of the speakers will be noted author René Colato Laínez.
Immediately following that program, from 10:30 to noon (MARCC-RIver Bend BR), join Pat Mora, Oralia Garza de Cortes, Jeanette Larson, and others for Many Children, Many Cultures, Many Books, a 15th anniversary celebration of Día. In addition to sharing new Día resources, attendees will discover multicultural programming techniques for year round Día celebrations. You could even be a part of this program! Amy Holcomb, ALSC Public Awareness Committee 2011 Program Organizer, is looking for people to share table top presentations that are representative of the multicultural programming in your library that supports Día’s mission. According to Holcomb, program attendees will have time to visit the tables before and after the main speakers. If you are interested in being part of this 15th anniversary celebration, contact Amy Holcomb firstname.lastname@example.org or 847-918-3209 by Wednesday, May 18th.