Guest Blogger

#PLA2024 Day 3

I started off the morning at the Children’s Author Breakfast, which is always a “must see” moment for attending as a Children’s Librarian. We got to listen to Gennifer Choldenko, Loren Long, Daniel Nayeri, and Maleeha Siddiqui discuss their current and upcoming titles. Plus, Daniel Nayeri is a bit of a Chicago fan, and we were serenaded by their various hits as a part of his talk. Another fun tidbit is that Loren Long spent six weeks creating a large diorama of the town for The Yellow Bus. This allowed him to better draw the path that the bus took on its drive. Next up was Baby Time Boredom. Make sure that you check out Ann’s blog post and Ellie Richardson’s post about this session. In addition to her recap, some take-aways that resonated with me include evaluating our coloring/writing table for diversity and adding labels to toy bins and…

Guest Blogger

#PLA2024 Day 2

I am going to jump around a bit as I took bits and pieces from various sessions that may appeal. First up this morning was another Science of Reading session with programs and initiatives from the San Francisco Public Library and Chicago Public Library. San Francisco has a really in-depth tutoring program called Fog Readers. It is a 1:1 tutoring program that pairs volunteers with children in need of reading intervention. Check it out! Chicago Public Library built on the idea of the Scarborough rope to create a Jump Into Reading initiative. It is currently trialing at a couple of branches and involves collection development, staff education, and programming. They have a dedicated decodables section and it is split into five sections based on the decodable skill. Sections include Consonant-Vowel-Consonant (CVC) Words, Blends and Digraphs, Vowel-e Words, R-Controlled Words and Vowel Teams, and Multisyllabic Words. Grab-and-go kits are also available…

Guest Blogger

#PLA2024 The Science of Reading

One of the topics that is visible in this year’s slate of PLA programming is The Science of Reading (pre-conference and regular programming). As one of our school districts adopted the curriculum this year, my coworker and I attended Public Libraries and Schools: Everything You Need to Know about the Science of Reading yesterday. This three-hour preconference session had a phenomenal line-up of speakers who discussed both what the state of Ohio is doing on a government level and what various public libraries around the state are doing on a local level. Some takeaways from today include:

Guest Blogger

The Bookstore Model of Customer Service at #PLA2020

Coming from a bookstore background, I was excited by this session as I feel that there are aspects of retail that librarians can adapt in order to make their organization successful.  All four presenters are currently in the library world, but were in the bookstore world at one time (or are still).  Here are a couple of tidbits that I pulled out of this session: The Internet has changed customer service from transactional to relational.  The only places that can get away with transactional service are ones where you can’t go anywhere else (ex. the DMV). People judge customer service by the same standard, whether it is at the store, the library, or the doctor’s office. Libraries can define service expectations for their employees based on their mission and values. Companies who are known for good service (ex. Apple, Disney, Trader Joe’s) use customer service templates.  A template isn’t a…

Guest Blogger

Limitless Libraries #pla2020

One of the meetings that I set up before PLA was with the NPL staff member who started the Limitless Libraries project and now coordinates their curriculum kits so I could pick her brain and see the reality of their project. As items are requested by students, they are put in these bins.  Each bin is for a different school.  There are approximately 120 schools who are a part of the program.  The bins are located in their staff workroom in the first basement.  (FYI-you can’t tell the workroom is in a basement!)   The materials are then bagged up and go out each day to the schools.  Each bag is for a different school.  The school delivery service added the library to their route and they pick up the bags.  Items are returned to the library through the same delivery service.   NPL also carries over 100 curriculum kits…

Guest Blogger

#PLA2020 Visit NPL

If you have a spare hour while you are in town, make sure that you stop by the Nashville Public Library.  It is about a 15 minute walk from the convention center.  There are a lot of fun nuggets to explore and be delighted.  Here are a couple of my favorites: The book drop is a miniature replica of the Nashville Public Library and is just as you enter the room. As you go up the stairs from the first to the second floor, the stairs are painted to look like book spines. Doesn’t every kid (and adult too!) want their own reading fort?  This structure is designed with nooks and crannies that are perfect for readers. This replica of the Ryman Auditorium is perfect for dramatic play!   Lisa Mulvenna is the Head of Youth/YA Services at the Clinton-Macomb Public Library.

Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Public Libraries

Programming Be “Tween” the Lines #alsc18 #act4kids

I LOVE programs where I come out of the session with program plans that can be easily adapted for my library.  This program had plenty of great ideas, from fuzzy moon sand to boo bubbles.  My favorite program was the Barbie bungee.  A couple of us were given a pile of rubber bands to make an interlocking bungee for Barbie.  Our goal was for Barbie to bungee jump and for only her hair to touch the floor.  You didn’t want her to crash, but you wanted the hair to reach the floor.  We estimated how many rubber bands that we would need and tested it out.  Sadly, our Barbie crashed as we used 3 too many rubber bands. This program can be easily recreated.  Supplies you will need include: -some sort of doll (multiple that are exactly the same).  You can use superheroes, Barbies, or whatever would be fun for…

Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Public Libraries

Grown-ups Are People Too. #alsc18 #act4kids

Do you work with small children and their caregivers?  Then this presentation is for you!  Julie Crabb from Anythink Libraries showed off her tricks to engaging caregivers and making them WANT to attend your programs. Step 1: Make slight adjustments to what you are currently doing.  Can you add in a pop song or one that caregivers will recognize?  An excellent suggestion from the audience was that just about every nursery rhyme can be set to the song We Will Rock You.  The Jbrary YouTube channel has a great example of All the Little Babies set to the tune of All the Single Ladies.  You may ask why to do something like this.  Grown-ups will leave your program with ear worms, which will lead to more grown-ups singing in their homes. Step 2-Research your city and events.  What’s hot for parents?  Does your community offer a coffee story time?  How…