Blogger AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Youth Book Awards with an International Flair

Spring is in the air and with it, perhaps one is looking for other award winners to purchase and promote in your libraries. Information in this blog post focuses on international books to help advance efforts to engage students; perhaps especially those who are recent immigrants to the United States

Blogger AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

A Novel Idea: One Example of Public and School Library Collaboration

One foundational piece of being a librarian, either in a public library or school setting, is the relationships we develop with our patrons.  In my community of Bend, Oregon, I work in one of the local high schools where we had a long-term substitute teacher who also completed her student teaching here, and was serving on our local public library board.  Through our working relationships, she connected me to the public library’s program supervisor, Liz, who oversees the A Novel Idea project. Liz reached out to me interested in partnering with a high school teacher-librarian to help read and vet the community nominations for A Novel Idea. The hope was that I would read with my high-school-student mentality to make suggestions about student interest in the nominated novels as a way to engage our teen readers. I was honored and thrilled at the opportunity to be part of this team.

Blogger AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Top Things School Librarians Love About Public Librarians

As a middle school librarian (and a soon-to-be-appointed member of the Board of Trustees of our local public library system), I often think about my public library colleagues.  When I reflect on all the things I see going on in public libraries, I find so many things to admire about public librarians and the work they do!  

Blogger AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Crowdsourcing Selection & Reconsideration Policies

The 2022-23 charge for the AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee on School and Public Library Cooperation is to provide strategies for how youth services libraries can work together in the face of the current climate of book challenges, concrete examples of how school and public libraries can support each other as we stand up for the need for EDI materials and environments, and useful products to include resources and talking points. Our committee is working to curate information to provide a toolkit of resources for youth services librarians in all settings.  Since reconsideration challenges are often conducted according to state-specific laws and regulations and determinations from these should be for adherence to selection policies, we’d like to crowdsource the details of both types of policies.  Strong selection and reconsideration policies aligned between school and public settings should present a united, transparent front to local communities and hopefully this resource enhances access to such…

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Get Ready for Summer!

It’s that magical time of year. Flowers are blooming, the sun is shining, and Summer Reading planning is in full swing! This is the time of year when I get to work most closely with my school librarian colleagues. I am a Family Services librarian in a suburban public library. I’m lucky to be in a town that really loves its libraries, both public and school. We get to see kids after school all year, and we hear a lot about the fabulous author visits and book recs that their school librarians bring to them. We plan programs and recommend reading to build on the learning that happens at school, and the school librarians likewise guide students to further develop learning they’ve started in public library programs. Summer, of course, is different. That daily exchange of learning changes shape, as school days transform into summer camp days and engagement in…

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Celebrating Our Differences

We are all different, and that’s okay.  I say this statement out loud at minimum once a month, usually when confronted with the unsavory news about banned and challenged books, book burnings, etc.; activities that are, at best, seriously misguided attempts to protect young minds from being exposed to topics deemed to be above their maturity level. The empath in me is always seeking to fully understand and walk in the proverbial shoes of someone else. However, the more I peruse the list of challenged titles, the more confused I become. Our country is a gumbo of cultures enhanced by the lived experiences and traditions of diverse people whose uniqueness adds flavor to our Americanness.  Just as there is no such thing as a one ingredient recipe, neither should there be the promotion and elevation of one singular story. To say that there is not room for more than one…

Blogger AASL/ALSC/YALSA Interdivisional Committee

Hats

Hats. I wear many of them. Literal hats of winter because in New York it gets cold. But other hats too. Teen librarian, school librarian, media literacy skills teacher, colleague, friend, relative, potential problem predictor, in-house worrier, tech-trouble-shooter, mask/face covering supplier, hand sanitizer distributor, and so many more hats. 

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A Booklist for NAHM (and Beyond)

You may be aware that November is Native American Heritage Month in the U.S. Often we see beautiful displays of books by and about Native/Indigenous people in our schools and libraries in November, but these are titles that should be highlighted and utilized all year. This is especially true because Native/Indigenous authors and illustrators have been criminally underrepresented in books for children over the years, therefor making it all the more critical for library workers and educators to spread the word and get these books into the hands of young readers.