Blogger Intellectual Freedom Committee

Support for Intellectual Freedom Challenges

2022 was a record-breaking year for attempts to censor library books.  Thanks to organized efforts, many complaints focused on books for youth. While parents have the right to monitor what their own children read, these banning efforts infringe upon the rights of other families.  How can we as children’s librarian professionals combat this trend? 

Blogger Managing Children's Services Committee

Training Storytime 101

Welcome to Ask ALSC, where the Managing Youth Services Committee asks leaders in children’s libraries to share their response to an issue or situation.  We hope to showcase a range of responses to topics that may affect ALSC members. If you’d like to respond to today’s topics, or suggest a topic for the future, please leave a comment. In public libraries, storytime is the bread and butter of children’s programming (and arguably, of all library programming). Much has been written on best practices for providing storytime, both on this blog and elsewhere. There are innumerable resources for those learning how to develop their storytime skills. But are there best practices for training others on how to present storytime?  As a supervisor, part of my responsibility is training new staff on planning and presenting youth programs, and storytime is both the most basic and yet also one of the most complex…


To Boldly Go Where They Have Not Gone Before

If you are lucky, you will have the opportunity to host a library school student; someone who thinks working with youth, caregivers, and families is absolutely the best.  Given that, I must be extremely lucky.  At last count, I have been able to do so fifty-two times.     Sometimes they are paid, sometimes not.  They can be called interns, or practicum students, or a number of other titles.  Whether they are just entering the professional workforce straight from college and graduate school, or have any number of years’ experience within or beyond the library world, an opportunity awaits for everyone involved.  In just one or two semesters, your investment of time, and sharing of knowledge, can turn out to be the pivotal learning experience for an aspiring children’s librarian. It all begins with a promise.  You promise to train them in all manner of library things.  They promise to apply…

Blogger Public Awareness Committee

Upcoming Deadlines for ALSC Institute Proposals and Bill Morris Submissions

ALSC National Institute, October 1 – 3, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota ALA conferences are great; we love the show floor and chances to mingle with our fellow ALSC members. But have you ever attended the ALSC Institute? Ok, it’s more of a vendor hallway than a vendor floor, but there are benefits for having a smaller footprint. Make meaningful connections with other attendees during group meals. Head to the hotel hot tub because it is fun, not because your feet feel like they are about to fall off. When everything happens at the same hotel making it to the first session of the day becomes so much easier… But ALSC Institutes don’t appear out of nowhere. We need the amazing people of ALSC to submit program proposals and share their knowledge. Whether you present or attend, the ALSC Institute makes it easy to stay “informed of current trends, emerging technologies,…

Blogger Elizabeth Serrano

2020 Bill Morris Seminar: Book Evaluation Training

Morris Seminar graphic

ALSC is seeking applications for its seventh biennial “Bill Morris Seminar: Book Evaluation Training,” to be held on Friday, January 24, 2020, prior to the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, Pa.  This invitational seminar supports and honors William C. Morris’ dedication to connecting librarians and children with excellent children’s books. The Morris Seminar will bring new ALSC members and members with limited evaluation experience together with those who have served on ALSC’s media evaluation committees in an environment to train and mentor them in the group process and in children’s media evaluation techniques.  The seminar will result in new and emerging leaders for future ALSC evaluation committees. The Morris Endowment supports those selected to attend the training seminar by offering the seminar at no charge to the attendee.  This includes all materials, breakfast, lunch, and afternoon break on Friday.  To help defray additional costs for hotel and other expenses, a…

Blogger Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers committee

Summer Reading for All!

Summer reading is almost here with all of the busy days, fantastic programs, and hours of summer learning that it brings. For almost everyone, the time for summer reading planning is over. Now, it’s all about execution. But before summer reading gets into full swing, take a step back and ask yourself: are the planned summer reading activities for everyone? Or, another way of looking at this question, are the current activities representative of the entire community? Incorporating more underserved communities into summer reading doesn’t have to mean a retooling of the entire summer reading calendar. Instead, a lot of progress can be made with relatively small efforts. One of the best ways can be to incorporate more diverse voices into SRP. This can mean subbing in a book at storytime or book club from an author whose background is typically underrepresented or making sure that diversity shows through in…

Blogger Meg Smith

A Tisket, a Tasket, Put Training in Your Basket

A children’s librarian’s basket of professional responsibilities often overflows with programming demands and story time schedules. Initially, it may appear impossible to carve out time for training amidst preparing for the next presentation or serving the latest day care, but it’s valuable that we recognize how critical regular training is to our effectiveness in reaching our communities. What training do you hope to add to your basket of professional development? Summer reading workshops, departmental classes, and powerful partnerships will aid us in meeting staff needs. Sweet Summer Reading Fairly soon, a youth services librarian’s busiest time of year will be upon us: the season of summer reading. To encourage and equip staff to meet these demands, the State Library of North Carolina offers summer reading workshops. These one day events provide a variety of sessions for staff serving tots through teens. Some course offerings focus on program logistics, such as…