Live Blogging

“Suddenly half the world is mine, what an amazing thing!” #alsc16

Do you have excited young Charlie Bucketts entering your library, wide-eyed and eager to explore? What are you doing to get them there and how are you equipping them with the tools they need to succeed in the 21st century?ticket-576228_1280

This morning, Katie O’Dell led an informative and inspiring session titled “Welcome to Reading: Amp Up Your Services for Beginning Readers.” She summarized the well-researched and innovative approach that Multnomah County Library is taking to support children who are working towards meeting third grade reading proficiency, specifically mentioning the library’s “Books 2 U Grade 2” pilot project and their “Golden Ticket” pilot project (check out Angela’s great post about these projects for more information!)

This session again reminded me of the value of relationships – relationships that take time, training, courage, and compassion. For those of you who are passionate about relationship building but found yourself #alscleftbehind, never fear! Check out the points below for a quick summary of Katie’s relationship building tips:

  • Build relationships both within your department and outside of it, equipping all staff with the skills they need to confidently engage with caregivers about how children learn to read.
  • Build relationships with teachers so that you can work together to meet the 21st century learning needs of children in your community.
  • Participate in school information nights and be present at large school events – don’t passively sit behind a table, but actively engage with caregivers, letting them know what you can do to help their child succeed. (Check out ALSC’s Everyday Advocacy website for advocacy tips, and sign up for ALSC’s Everyday Advocacy Challenge to really strengthen your advocacy muscles! Also, check out the Libraries Transform campaign, and work at crafting your own “I’m an expert in ______” statement!)
  • Engage with stakeholders, caregivers, and children about their likes and dislikes. Through careful observation and listening, you’ll discover a lot!
  • Build relationships with your local universities and colleges. The professors and students can do so much to increase your knowledge base and to make you better equipped to serve the children in your community.

To those who are working hard to form relationships so as to create a better future for children through libraries, THANK YOU! You are giving children a golden ticket – “a golden chance to make their way…and with a golden ticket, it’s a golden day!”

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