Did you know February 26th is National Tell a Fairy Tale Day? Don’t be embarrassed if you didn’t; fairy tales are my favorite, and even I wasn’t aware until very recently. In fact, my love of fairy tales dates back to long before I became a librarian. It turns out such love isn’t uncommon among children; a recent Brightly article includes quite a bit of anecdotal evidence attesting to children’s passion for magic, escapism, even the “twisted and bizarre,” while this ALSC post from 2015 highlights the universality of these stories.
For the past two school years, I’ve been leading a book club at the local school. Funded by a grant geared specifically towards religious and parochial schools, the book club gives me the opportunity to connect with 5th, 6th and 7th graders in a way I normally wouldn’t.
As a teen service librarian, one of the most challenging tasks is activating the tween and teen space. In my six years of experience in youth services, I have always tried to think of the next big thing to boost programming numbers and make the area more inviting to tweens and teens. I constantly brainstormed ideas and re-evaluated my services. Surely this was enough, but my tweens taught me otherwise. I was working too hard on something that was already happening.
Children’s librarians are experts at many things as we recently learned. But I know a major skill that’s tested almost daily on the floor is flexibility. I was a brand-new library paraprofessional when the first day of spring break descended upon my branch…along with every preschooler-third grader in a 10-mile radius. Or so it seemed. However, they weren’t the only people at the library. There were a lot of adult patrons using the computer banks who were not happy with the noise level. I’m sure you’ve had this happen where you work—it’s not like any one person was inappropriately loud. The amount of (young) people in the building was just causing a lot of noise to build, and customers were looking sideways at each other…and at the staff. Well, as the only children’s staff member present at the time, to be fair, they were looking at me! So, I did…
On Monday, January 28, three well established awards, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, the Sydney Taylor Book Award, and the American Indian Youth Literature Award, joined the Youth Media Awards announcement at ALA Midwinter.
The ALSC Public Awareness Committee is seeking art submissions from members and non-members alike to support the Championing Children’s Services Toolkit. This advocacy toolkit will go live just in time for ALA Annual and will be a resource for children’s librarians, youth staff, and library advocates like board of trustees and friends of the library groups. The goal of the toolkit is to help communicate to elected officials and other library stakeholders about the crucial work being done in library children’s departments that supports kids and family success.
It’s book list season: book list upon book list. How could I not jump in and build my own? I love scouring through the new books my library receives each year and finding the hidden gems, the books that may not have a large publisher and marketing campaign but make an impression on me nonetheless. Here are my personal top 10 for 2018!
Did you know that there was a newbie mixed in with this year’s Youth Media Awards? You may have missed it in the press release, but at the 2019 Midwinter Meeting of ALA in Seattle, ALSC presented one award and two honors for Excellence in Early Learning Digital Media [EELDM]. This award recognizes the most distinguished digital media created for an early learning audience by a producer based in the United States. You should know that this award considers all forms of digital media, defined as “any interactive media content or product that is available via electronic device across one or more platforms,” for “children ages 2-8 along with their caregivers, professionals, and media mentors serving them.” The 2018 award selection committee specifically sought out to identify the most outstanding “digital media that enables and encourages active engagement and social interaction while informing, educating, and/or entertaining in a developmentally appropriate…