I attended tonight’s screening of The Public followed by a Q+A with Emilio Estevez. Some fun facts: The idea for the film came to Emilio after he read Chip Ward’s Los Angeles Times piece. The movie features some wild reference questions, all of which was sourced from real librarians. Emilio made an effort to cast homeless individuals in the film. One of the original locations for the film was supposed to be a Los Angeles area library, but the library turned them down because they’d had issues with people filming there in the past. The culprit? The West Wing! (“I called my dad and yelled at him”)
This is the Midwinter session I was most excited for, and it did not disappoint! CiKeithia Pugh, from The Seattle Public Library, opened the session by reminding us that access and inclusion are not equity. It will take intentional, focused work to shift power to our communities. Pugh encouraged us to ask ourselves how we’re sharing power in our work. It’s something I’ll be reflecting on. As librarians, it falls to us to make sure that the things we say we value are reflected in practice. We need to be mindful of dominant power structures: how they affect our work, our own role as individuals connected to a powerful institution, the ways we cling to the power we hold. When we use data to create programs, are we evaluating what we’re not being told? Pugh encourages librarians to supplement every statistic with community-led data. It’s all a part of her…
The introduction to computational thinking kicked off with a massive game of rock, paper, scissors! The game may seem simple, but it models computational thinking beautifully! Each hand position is a symbol that represents an object, the game involves pattern recognition, background knowledge, and a thorough understanding of the logic. A recording of the session will be available, Paula Langsam and Claudia Haines packed so much wonderful information into the session that it’s definitely worth checking out.
As a first time Midwinter attendee, it can be difficult to navigate the conference, so I was delighted to attend the ALSC membership dinner and connect with other librarians! It was easy to get involved: a few weeks ago, I signed up to share a meal with a small group of youth services librarians and was paired with four brilliant, talented professionals. Tonight, we met up, bonded over our love of children’s literature, and had some truly fantastic Indian food. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet new librarians, learn from my peers, and ask questions about ALSC.
It’s less than three weeks until the ALA Midwinter Meetings to be held in Seattle, WA from January 25 through the 29th. We’d love to have you consider joining our live blogging team.