Media Mentorship, Diversity and Inclusion, and the Screen Time Symposium

The Screen Time Symposium, a collaboration between the Developmental Media Lab and the Erikson Institute, was held September 9th in Chicago. Organized by Carly Kocurek and Jennifer Miller, this interdisciplinary symposium raised many “provocations” around digital media for young people—all of which are relevant to our work as youth services librarians, and especially as media mentors, working to select the best tools and apps for the children we serve.

Tell Us About Great New Digital Media!

Hello from the Excellence in Early Learning Digital Media Committee! Have you come across any new digital media you think all kids and parents should know about? Our committee is reviewing digital media released in 2020 in the U.S. for early learners (2-8) and their caregivers, and we’d love to see your recommendations! Please use this simple form to share your feedback with us. Deadline for submissions is January 1, 2021.

Kobe Bryant, Coronavirus and things that keep me up at night (like censorship of LQBTQIA+ authors, and youth media awards excitement)… #alamw20

Trying to shield the blue light of my phone screen from the peacefully sleeping husband and baby beside me. Slept a deep deep sleep and woke to the powerful urge to plan my last conference day. It’s 3:37 AM. I also want to reflect on yesterday. I captured my day in notes, media and book buzz bags. I want to share some of the bigger moments.I was leading a digital media discussion group with the Film & Media Roundtable when news broke about basketball player Kobe Bryant’s startling death in a helicopter accident. My best friend Allison was helping me live tweet the discussion via the FMRT twitter account. The FMRT Digital Media Discussion is starting now at #alamw20 in room 111-B. pic.twitter.com/PhYKjd8bPk — Film & Media Round Table (@ALA_FMRT) January 26, 2020 After the discussion, she returned my phone to me and said, some big news and messages rolled…

At #alaac19, ALSC Leadership Champions Media Literacy, Computational Thinking and Connected Family Learning

Media Literacy. Computational Thinking. Connected Family Learning. These are the buzzwords that Kathleen Campana, Elizabeth Mills, Marianne Martens and Claudia Haines emphasized at yesterday’s Leadership and ALSC meeting, a gathering of ALSC committee chairs and other leaders. Their presentation, “Positioning New Media across the Evolving Landscape of Children’s Services,” made powerful and lucid arguments for why these approaches are essential for children’s library services. Media Literacy Advocacy for media literacy in libraries has been around since the release of the first iPad in 2010. Since then, librarians have worked to develop best practices, including ALSC’s well-known Media Mentorship white paper. However, not all children’s librarians are comfortable sharing screens with kids. So why bother? “Screens are ubiquitous,” Campana argued. Throughout her portion of the presentation, a live text message poll gauged librarian interest and comfort in media mentorship. Despite some uncertainty, there was strong support in the room for prioritizing…

Media Mentorship Resources for ALSC Members

I am serving on the ALSC Membership Committee until 2019. As I reach out to new members, one of my roles is to promote the professional benefits of being an ALSC member. Recently I was drawn into an emotional conversation with several parents of children whose ages ranged from 3 to 7 years old on the topic of technology use and their children. Just what are the best practices? As I listened, I was so grateful for ALSC and the many resources available on Media Mentorship. The three archived webinars (Media Mentorship in Libraries Serving Youth: a Primer; Best Practices for Apps in Storytime; Young Children & Media: Libraries in the Multi-Screen, Multi-touch Digital World), has given me and my staff the confidence to really listen to parents’ concerns and respond from a place filled with knowledge, not judgement. We frequently reassure parents that technology use is personal and a…

Media Mentorship: In Three Parts

Media Mentorship has been a buzz word in children’s librarianship for a while. While it can still cause some disagreement, we’ve generally resolved that it’s important for children’s librarians to embrace as part of their role. Many contend, myself included, that we’ve always been media mentors – that the only real change has been the medium through which media is being conveyed. Even still, it can be tricky to navigate what about these new mediums to focus on as librarians. I’ve been working with a group of librarians out of Central Maryland, along with Lisa Guernsey from New America and Elaine Czarnecki of Resources in Reading to develop a training toolkit for library systems around the topic of Media Mentorship and we’ve broken the concept of Media Mentorship down into three categories for easier understanding.   Media Mechanics – How do I work this? We’ve long acknowledged that it’s important…

ALA Annual Sessions for Media Mentors from the ALSC Children’s & Technology Committee

Every month, the ALSC Blog will feature a post from ALSC’s Children and Technology Committee featuring tools that help librarians connect and engage with their users. Greetings from the Children and Technology Committee! Are you heading to ALA Annual in a few weeks? There are a lot of amazing sessions happening and many of them are perfect for librarians wanting to know more about media mentorship and using technology in your library. Here are a few ideas of sessions to check out: