Every library has its superusers. You know them—the people and families you see weekly, exchanging one pile of books for another, or attending every program that piques their interests.
Over 20 years ago I was new to America. Everything was new. I left behind my family and friends in India. I was fortunate that even before I learned to drive, I was introduced to the Public Library. I was not used to Public Libraries as we do not have them in India. I was used to school, college and university libraries, circulating libraries run out of garages or special libraries to which we had to purchase membership.
As Children’s Librarians, updating our approach to storytime can be scary. Storytime is often the core programming service provided and the first thing families think of when they think of library youth programming.
Getting an interview for a position you are interested in is super exciting, but also can be pretty scary because many times you only have one chance to make a great impression. After 8 years of hiring for youth services positions at all levels, here are some of my tips for rocking your job interview. Be prepared to share your experience and successes. This seems like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised by the amount of candidates I’ve interviewed that struggled with effectively sharing their qualifications. Before the interview, review your resume and think about how your previous experience has prepared you to succeed at this position. What are the highlights you want to be sure you share? Are there any programs, partnerships, or initiatives you helped to develop, implement, or improve? If there are any specific qualifications or skills that this position calls for, like understanding childhood development,…
Whenever I look at something going bad, I ask: Are there systems in place? Are they up to date? Are they implemented? It all leads up to making decisions on high consequence, low probability events, or what many call high risk – low frequency. Think of your library. Each library consists of a distinct set of offices, branches, departments, or at a minimum, colleagues each with set of things for which they are responsible. Let’s just call them the things we do; each of us. Your job is complex. There may be hundreds or thousands of things you do that need to happen correctly so that your library, office, branch, or department can function; consistently delivering upon its mission. Those things all have one singular goal; doing it right. In youth work, if you are going to recommend titles, you do it right. If you are presenting a story time,…
A colleague—and friend—once told me that I was the best “natural networker” she had ever met. I was stunned, because the idea of going to a networking social and trying to make small talk throughout the evening and to sell myself sounds completely and utterly miserable. I’ve never even attended a networking event. The idea of doing so makes me break out in hives!
Welcome to Ask ALSC, where the Managing Youth Services Committee asks leaders in children’s libraries to share their response to an issue or situation. We hope to showcase a range of responses to topics that may affect ALSC members. If you’d like to respond to today’s topics, or suggest a topic for the future, please leave a comment. As libraries reopen, some have in-person storytimes, while other libraries are still exclusively online. Others have created a hybrid using both. No matter which way storytime is presented, we are all looking for fresh and inventive ways to help children learn and have a positive time during storytimes. One simple and fun way to welcome children back is to include yoga. Incorporating yoga in storytime is very easy to plan, given some simple dos and don’ts. Here are a few resources to help guide you.
There has been a lot written, in this blog and in other publications, about the role libraries and librarians can play in helping communities that experience a natural disaster. Children’s librarians play an especially important role in providing kids and families with resources for recovery and resiliency. But library staff are also going through the disaster and aftermath themselves. Having gone through two major hurricanes, 16 years apart to the day, I would like to share what I’ve learned about taking care of the library’s greatest asset during and after a disaster-the staff.