In September, I was afforded the opportunity to attend the 2022 ALSC Institute – #ALSC22 – in Kansas City as a recipient of the Friends of ALSC Scholarship. It was my first time attending the Institute, and after two very tumultuous years of the COVID pandemic and its lingering effects, I was excited to attend an in-person gathering of my children’s services peers at the national level.
Hello ALSC Members! In years past, the ALSC Budget Committee has written articles calling attention to frequently misunderstood concepts regarding ALSC’s Budget, discussed ALSC’s many endowments, and highlighted general misconceptions around this quiet, but vital committee. The committee has also worked to create infographics to help demystify how ALSC allocates its funds – and how you (or your library) can take advantage of ALSC’s and ALA’s grants and awards. This year, we’re going to take a different approach, and we need your help! Have you benefited from an ALSC-related program like the ALSC Equity Fellowship program or the Friends of ALSC Institute Scholarship? Have you served on a committee that requested funding to complete a project? Perhaps you’ve met a friend or a professional contact at an ALSC-Related sponsored Happy Hour. If so, we want to hear from you and hear how ALSC has influenced your professional journey. Please contact…
During the 2022 ALSC Institute, I had the great privilege of attending Marine Band Librarian Staff Sergeant Philip Espe’s presentation: Wake Up Your Musicianship for More Inclusive Storytimes! Philip welcomed us with music and song from the moment we stepped into the room! As a former teacher and choir soprano, I appreciated how Philip scaffolded our learning using a variety of visual, melodic, lyrical and kinesthetic aids. Philip modeled how we can set the stage for all families to embrace their inner musician. “Music making and music loving is for everyone.” After taking us through tunes such as “Don Alfonso” and “Campanero” (a Spanish version of “Frère Jacques), Philip encouraged us to evaluate and curate our storytime music, similarly to how we evaluate and curate our storytime collections. Music is an expression of culture, and our communities deserve to hear music that reflects them – in the same way that…
The Bechtel Fellowship is designed to allow qualified children’s librarians to spend up to four weeksreading and studying at the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, a part of the George A.Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida, Gainesville. The Baldwin Library contains a specialcollection of 120,000 volumes of children’s literature published mostly before 1950. The fellowship isendowed in memory of Louise Seaman Bechtel and Ruth M. Baldwin and provides a stipend of up to$7,500.
So this was an unlikely session for me. I’m a bit of an introvert and I don’t think quickly on my feet. But at #alsc22, it’s a safe space, so I’m willing go outside my comfort zone. I know to learn, I need to spend more time exploring new and different things. And I’m so glad I did! Librarians Chelsea Condren and Jessica Espejel led “Applying Improvisational Skills in Public Librarianship,” sharing how and why the training developed.
Just as folks turned to backyards and public parks during COVID lockdowns, libraries had to shift their focus outdoors during building closures and beyond. Michelle Willis from Scotch Plains Public Library (NJ) demonstrated in “Beyond Storytime: Library Programs the Snap, Crackle, and Pop” with Denise Lyons (SC) that moving programs outdoors can be more than a solution – it can enhance them. And in “Black Kids Camp Too, Don’t They?” Michelle Martin stressed the need for more representation of Black children and families (and BIPOC at large) in wild, outdoor spaces.
Another early morning for ALSC Institute 2022. Adam Gidwitz and Hena Khan opened the day talking about their collaboration in authoring the latest installment of the Unicorn Rescue Society with healthy doses of humor and humility.
Liz McChesney and Sue Abrahamson began their session on Learning Beyond: The Urgency of Summer and the ALSC Toolkit for Summer and OST Programming with an out-of-box ice breaker. They had us open our phones and share a picture with someone we didn’t know. I shared this photo of my loveable and frustrating beagle, Dan.