Guest Blogger

From Frustrated to Delighted: Analog and STEM programming

old fashioned postcards scattered across the image. A postcard of the Empire State Building and a postcard of the Statue of Liberty are included. Used for STEM programming.

In 2015, I was working as a Children’s Librarian at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania). I had to produce and present a summer reading program with iPads for school age kids. This was part of a pilot program that summer to introduce children, especially inner city children, to iPads as a way to decrease the digital divide. STEM programming on an iPad? I had no idea what to do. I didn’t even own a smart phone!

Author Spotlight

Bryan Collier’s Lecture “Dreamwalker” Is Now Available for Viewing

The 2023 Children’s Literature Lecture Award featuring Bryan Collier has been posted to the ALSC website and is now available for viewing by members. Collier’s lecture entitled “Dreamwalker” is an insightful and fascinating presentation of how an illustrator’s skill creates picture books that can be read visually and with words. It was AH-MAZING! As an illustrator and author Collier offers firsthand details  about creating picture books that will enrich those of us who evaluate them, use them, and love them.

Children and Libraries (CAL)

Sharing Services: CAL Seeks SRP Best Practices Articles, Photos

It’s hard to believe that summer has already come and gone! While fall brings a new set of programs, services, and problems to solve, it’s important to make space and time to reflect on the whirlwind of summer reading and learning. What challenges did you overcome, what successes and joys did you find, and what are you hoping to carry forward into 2024? These are all important questions to sit with, and now is the perfect opportunity to share your reflections on the lessons you’ve learned with others! Children and Libraries (CAL), the journal of the Association for Library Service to Children, is seeking articles and photos from Summer Reading Programs for the Spring 2024 issue. In particular, the journal is looking for “Best Practices” pieces around summer reading and learning. These pieces are typically 1,500 words or less and detail a successful (or not-so-successful) children’s program. Effective best practice…

Guest Blogger

Too Many Toys: Recovering Library Programming and Play Spaces

Play food scattered atop a table in the children's play area with other toys on the surrounding floor.

Have you ever looked around the library and wondered where all the toys came from? Or who was going to clean them up? Did it make you want to cry? Or maybe kick and scream and have a bit of tantrum? I’ve been there, and I’m guessing you have, too. Whether you’re looking at a public floor play space or programming toys, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Supporting play in libraries often means giving children and caregivers access to many toys and activities. Open-ended toys provide more learning opportunities, but often means more loose parts. If you’re like me, you’ve probably seen something that would be just perfect for your program or space and purchased it. But when does it become too many toys? Can you recover? Let me tell you what my library did.

Children and Libraries (CAL)

Meet Sharon Verbeten – Editorial Director of Children and Libraries

Sharon Verbeten, Director of Youth Services at the Manitowoc Public Library, has been at the helm of the Children and Libraries journal as its Editorial Director since the journal’s start twenty-one years ago. Over the past two decades, Sharon has curated a quarterly publication of best practices and scholarly articles that has long been a venue for Association for Library Service to Children members to build community and share resources in youth librarianship. In a recent interview with ALSC’s CAL committee member Sarah Simpson, Sharon shared her background and what inspires her as CAL’s Editorial Director.

Children's Literature (all forms)

2024 Pura Belpré Input Wanted

The 2024 Pura Belpré Awards Committee is asking ALSC, REFORMA, and YALSA members to submit titles for consideration. Three Pura Belpré awards are presented annually: one to a Latino author of an outstanding book for youth ages 0 to 14, one to a Latino author of an outstanding book for young adults ages 12 to 18, and one to a Latino illustrator for creating an outstanding illustrated book for youth ages 0 to 18. Each of these must be an original work that portrays, affirms, and celebrates Latino cultural experiences.