It is the most magical time of the year, and no one knows this better than those of us who work with children in libraries. We are the people who throw around words like “Caldecott,” “Newbery,” and “Belpré” with ease and pour over all the lists the day they come out (if we didn’t wake up early to watch the announcements in person!).
The day the Youth Media Awards are announced is basically the children’s librarian Super Bowl – even if you don’t really care about the results, you better look up the winners, so that you know what you are talking about when your coworkers bring the awards up. You can view the 2023 award winners now!
I love participating in mock award groups online and reading about the predictions of others, but ALSC members are the ones who really have a seat at the table.
If being appointed to an award committee sounds like your kind of fun, the first step is being a member of ALSC! Once you get that squared away, fill out the ALSC committee volunteer form to express your interest in the awards committees, or consider another committee that fits your strengths like advocacy, organizational support, or professional development. Leadership takes many forms, so find the role that works best for you.
Many of us do not have the extra time or brain power to be a committee member on top of our regular work life, but a regular membership in ALSC is still important. As a member, you have access to resources that you can use to strengthen your library and your professional self, and when you find yourself ready to wade a little deeper, you are already plugged in.
Congrats to all of the ALSC members who have been working hard to create amazing youth media award lists and good luck to those joining the crew! Will it be your name on the roster next time?
Whitney Hasler is a youth services librarian in New Braunfels, Texas, and a member of the ALSC Membership Committee.
This blog post relates to ALSC Core Competencies of: VII. Professionalism and Professional Development.