Every year, I teach a survey of children’s literature class to MLIS students. After I have covered the history of children’s publishing, and children’s literacy development, I spend a whole class on books for babies. It’s one of my favourite classes because I get to bring an enormous stack of baby books to class and teach my students all about them. Reading to babies I start out by reminding them that human babies are born totally helpless and frankly – they don’t care what anyone reads to them. That being said, babies do want and need to be held and touched and interacted with. Books designed for babies do seem to offer parents and caregivers a nice way of doing just that: holding, touching, and interacting with their babies from their earliest days onwards. When babies are born, their vision is not fully developed so high contrast books with very clear and spare black…
Category: Collection Development
I Learned It on TikTok: Professional Development from an Unlikely Source
TikTok is my favorite resource for professional development. That might seem unlikely, if you associate the platform with teens dancing in silly ways to trending songs. But TikTok can be a fantastic resource for storytime songs, reading recommendations, and learning more about childhood development – provided you use it thoughtfully. Here are some of my favorite things I’ve learned from TikTok since I started curating an account around all things library.
LGBT Books in Storytime
Include all families in your storytimes by making sure that you’re including LGBT books in storytime. According to Family Equality, between 2 million to 3.7 million American children under age 18 have an LGBTQ+ parent. An estimated 29% of LGBTQ+ adults are raising a child and many more than that have nieces, nephews, or other children in their lives. Chances are, you have a family coming to your storytimes that would appreciate seeing themselves or their family member represented! But what do you read?
All Together Now 2023 SRP
But It’s Still Winter… Believe it or not, this is my 20th year working – as a paid employee – in Central Florida libraries. If you include volunteering…well…that’d be most of my life. From all I’ve ever experienced, you can never be fully or overly prepared for a season of summer reading programming. As a matter of fact, I am known for ALWAYS having a backup plan for each program, right down to duplicates of mission critical equipment. Sounds like a military operation, doesn’t it? So, yes, it’s January and we are talkin’ All Together Now, our 2023 Summer Reading Program! Nitty Gritty, Nuts and Bolts I always love a tool kit, a place I can have everything in one spot, like a Swiss Army knife. I’m based in Florida, but this seems to have universal appeal: CSLP 2023 Program Resources 2023 Summer Program (and beyond) Resources: Overview of popular…
Evaluating Native American Books
It’s November. Depending on your community, this may be a time when teachers and patrons were clamoring for books about Native American nations. I blogged earlier this month about Thanksgiving books, and now the holiday is over and Native American Heritage Month is drawing to a close. As books come back onto your shelves, it’s the perfect time for evaluating Native American books in your collection. Here are some areas to take a look at.
Notable Children’s Books Discussions – November 2022
Each year the ALSC Notable Children’s Books Committee identifies the best of the best in children’s books. According to the Notables Criteria, “notable” is defined as: Worthy of note or notice, important, distinguished, outstanding. As applied to children’s books, notable should be thought to include books of especially commendable quality, books that exhibit venturesome creativity, and books of fiction, information, poetry and pictures for all age levels (birth through age 14) that reflect and encourage children’s interests in exemplary ways. This year the 2023 Notable Children’s Books committee will be meeting on Tuesday, Nov 29, 2022 and Wednesday, Nov 30, 2022. Each session will begin at 1:00 PM (Central Time) and will be approximately four hours long. Register to watch the online discussions here. Here is the list of titles which will be discussed: Picture Books ● Alone Like Me by Rebecca Evans. Anne Schwartz Books / Random House ●…
Thanksgiving Books Without the Myth
Thanksgiving books are probably the most sought-after holiday books in my library. As a white librarian who strives to do less harm, Thanksgiving books give me pause. Children are still being taught the Thanksgiving myth, while some people consider Thanksgiving a day of mourning. We serve all of them as members of our community. How can we fulfill the demand for books while avoiding harmful stereotypes and misinformation?
Why Do Kids Love Thrillers?
Thrillers have been surging again in YA literature for the last few years. The popularity of thrillers ebbs and flows in YA (raise your hand if you devoured I Know What You Did Last Summer in the 90’s like I did), but Kate McManus’ One of Us Is Lying brought this genre to the top again in a big way, and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Thrillers are also a perennial favorite among the middle grade crowd. What’s the appeal behind this genre, and what can we offer young thrill-seekers?