Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Vote for Books!

Or rather, books about voting. How can we engage our young customers in the electoral process, and start imparting the importance of voting upon them at a young age? This would be the time to do a mock election at your branch—Peanut Butter or Jelly?  Chocolate or vanilla?  I recall seeing this great blog that had a secret voting booth and everything!  But this year, however…EVERYTHING is different, again thanks to the pandemic.  One thing that remains, though, is that publishers put out election-friendly books for kids during our presidential election year.  And today, I’m going to take a look at a few of them. First, for the picture book set: Jonathan London’s Froggy for President. Froggy is so excited to run for class president that he leaves his house in only his underwear and is once again saved by his reliable mom.  Of course, Frogilina would run against him,…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

StoryWalk® Talk

When in-person programming, and indeed even being inside the library, came to a screeching halt in March, at-home librarians across the country began brainstorming ways to reach their customers.  At Cuyahoga County Public Library in suburban Cleveland, Ohio, a group came together to create multiple StoryWalk® opportunities around the county.  According to its website, “StoryWalk® was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, VT and has developed with the help of Rachel Senechal, Kellogg-Hubbard Library.”  Anyone is free to use the idea if the walk includes a statement with the walk.  An FAQ that answers many questions is found here.  I’ve been at my current branch for a year, and in that time, I had played with the idea of a StoryWalk®.  A city-owned path runs behind the library, and it is frequented by people all year round (and in Northeast Ohio winters, that says something).  Not being able to program…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Kristy, Mary-Anne, Claudia, Stacey and Dawn

It was a strange Fourth of July.  The big party I usually go to was pared down, and with my underlying conditions, I didn’t even attend the smaller gathering.  What should I do? Luckily, I fall in the age-range that had something to do this Fourth of July weekend, after watching Hamilton, of course.  I’m in that little slice of “Xennials” that screamed very loudly for New Kids on the Block.  You know who you are!  And a few years before that, we were exactly the right age when Kristy Thomas had her great idea. That’s right.  I binge watched Netflix’s new re-imagining of The Baby-Sitters’ Club, and, as a childhood fan, I found it delightful.  I was “beyond” the Club when the earlier TV show had come out, but now, as an adult during a pandemic, nostalgia for a simpler time was just what I needed. The first episode…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Tales from Self-Isolation

I haven’t had this much time off since high school summer vacation.  However, a pandemic is a much more stressful than time off school.  How did YOU continue being a librarian during this time off?  Here’s what I did. First, I helped with a portion of ALSC’s upcoming Virtual Storytime Services Resource Guide.  I am very excited to see the completed work! I live in Ohio, and thankfully, there were several online networking (and venting/commiserating) opportunities.  The State Library of Ohio continues to have a weekly “Ohio Youth Services Meet Up” every Tuesday morning.  I cannot tell you how much the sharing and listening that occurs in this meet up has helped me keep my sanity.  In addition, the North East Ohio Regional Library System also had a series of meet ups that served the same purpose. I watched a bunch of free webinars from publishers and publications previewing upcoming…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

TV Tips to Look Your Virtual Best

I started working at the library when I was 16 as a page (aka “shelver,” at the branch where I work now, though I worked elsewhere in between).  In truth, I never left.  My aim, however, was not originally to be a librarian.  My first goal was to work as a writer or producer in television, which is totally NOT as dramatic as it sounds. And I did it!  For 7 years…while still working as a page. (Again—TV?  Also not as lucrative as it sounds).  I eventually transitioned to be a librarian, and I have always seen a through line in those two professions.  Both are about disseminating information, whether to entertain, educate, or inform.  The medium is just different. I am, though, suddenly realizing that my background in television will help my career in children’s librarianship in a surprising way: by helping me frame my virtual programming videos. I am…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Winter Preschool STEAM

Back in October, I wrote about the aptly named Fall Fun Preschool STEAM program, the first of its kind I had offered.  I had been inspired by a colleague’s presentation, which you can read more about in the link. In February, our department held a Winter Preschool STEAM program that was also tons of fun, and I wanted to share. About 30 people (kids and caregivers) attended.  We started by creating a sensory snowman…aka a snow globe.  Voss water bottles were PERFECT for the snowman, and the lid resembled a hat.  Strips of blue flannel for a scarf really made him pop.  I’ve made snow globes before with glycerin and they never really worked.  Using clear glue, as suggested in the link, was a great upgrade…and added to the science as we discussed how the glitter was suspended by the glue. Next, we made a “melted” snowman…basically, it was white…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

The Virginia Hamilton Conference Creative Outreach Grants

The Virginia Hamilton Conference on Multicultural Literature for Youth celebrates its 35th anniversary on April 30th at Kent State University.  The Conference is the longest running event in the country that focuses exclusively on multicultural literature for children and young adults. Besides offering workshops on a myriad of topics, the Conference offers several awards, including the Virginia Hamilton and Arnold Adoff Creative Outreach Grants for Teachers and Librarians.  The application deadline is February 28th, and you or a colleague may be eligible. Each year, two $1000 grants are awarded—one to a K-12 teacher and another to a school or public librarian.  According to the Conference website, criteria for a proposal includes a program that: Promotes awareness of multicultural themes and issues through outstanding literature; Illustrates the use of exemplary multicultural literature, particularly but not exclusively the works of Virginia Hamilton; Demonstrates effective organization, methods and/or library service; Includes a plan…