Remember ALA on #GivingTuesday.

American Library Association • December 3, 2019
Facilitation Skills for Small and Rural Libraries

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Holiday gift guide for librarians and book lovers

American Libraries' 2019 Holiday Gift Guide for Librarians and Book Lovers, including the Writers vs. Writers Insult Chart, Star Wars Princess Leia READ pouch, and vintage library coasters

Lara Ewen writes: “A cozy nook, a good book, and all the time in the world: What more could a bibliophile desire? This holiday season, help friends and loved ones indulge in their most bookish tendencies with a quirky assortment of reader-related accessories and accoutrements for every budget.”...

American Libraries feature, Dec. 2

Support libraries on #GivingTuesday

Support Libraries on Giving Tuesday

Today is Giving Tuesday, and ALA is asking library advocates to support libraries. Thanks to generous donors, gifts to ALA could be matched until midnight on December 3. Your donation will help ALA advocate for things like #eBooksForAll, provide professional development for library workers, and tell the world about the impact of libraries. Please consider a gift today....

ALA Development Office, Dec. 3

Sponsored Content

From left: Catherine Morse, Joe Bauer, Matt Carruthers, and Sara Hughes at a research sprint held in October 2019 in partnership with University of Michigan Library. The group worked on developing a data management system for information on public drinking water.

Hackathon-Like Approach to Research

What’s the impact of facial-recognition technology on communities of color? How can scholars protect their anonymity while researching the dark web?

Academic librarians, like those at University of Michigan, are connecting students and faculty to experts in their various fields who can—in short periods of time—help solve problems like the ones above. And these “research sprints” are taking off. For instance, looking to create an interactive timeline of the women’s suffrage movement? Gale’s Women’s Studies Archive: Women’s Issues and Identities can help.

Read the fourth of this multipart series on how librarians are building and growing relationships within the academic community.


2020 voting and census timeline

2020 calendar with several dates circled in red

With the upcoming primary elections and caucuses, the general election in November, and the decennial census officially starting in April, 2020 is going to be a busy year for library outreach efforts. Use this timeline to keep track of upcoming milestones and deadlines for your community....

American Libraries feature, Dec. 2
ALA news

Public libraries ditching fines to fight inequity

No library fines

Emma Bowman writes: “For decades, libraries have relied on fines to discourage patrons from returning books late. But a growing number of some of the country's biggest public library systems are ditching overdue fees after finding that the penalties drive away the people who stand to benefit the most from free library resources. From San Diego to Chicago to Boston, public libraries that have analyzed the effects of late fees on their cardholders have found that they disproportionately deter low-income residents and children.”...

NPR, Nov. 30; AL: The Scoop, Sept. 30

The censorship war in Loudoun County (Va.)

Cover of My Princess Boy by Cheryl Kilodavis

Richard Price writes: “As a political scientist, I’m interested in book challenges because they are, at their core, acts of political power. What is included or excluded in our public institutions, such as schools and libraries, is a statement of who we are as a people. People tend to understand the attempt at exclusion as political but have a harder time with the idea that inclusion is as well. But the decision to include voices in your library is just as political even if we often prefer to talk about political neutrality.”...

OIF Blog, Dec. 2

Tackling patron meta-illiteracy

Library in a laptop

Nadine Kramarz writes: “Public libraries provide Wi-Fi so that individuals in need can utilize technology such as a laptop or a smartphone. But do they know how to use it? Do they know what services are available to them? Do they know how to navigate a website? In my last post, I discussed why librarians should not handle patrons’ personal devices. As a continuation, I want to look at how much help a librarian can provide for a patron with multiple illiteracies and how this affects said patrons.”...

Public Libraries Online, Nov. 3, 29
Latest Library Links

Shorewood (Wisc.) Public Library gets $5.5 million bequest

Elaine (left) and Larry Lange left $5.5 million to the Shorewood (Wisc.) Public Library in their will. They both died in 2018.

Jeff Rumage writes: “Larry and Elaine Lange loved their local library. The longtime Shorewood (Wisc.) residents, both professional engineers, regularly checked out books and volunteered as tutors in Shorewood Public Library's long-running English Language Learner sessions. Their generosity continues after death. In their will, they left $5.5 million to Shorewood Public Library. Elaine died in January 2018, followed by Larry in July 2018. Several months after Larry died, Shorewood Library Director Rachel Collins said she was notified of the $5.5 million bequest. She said she was shocked, as the Langes had never shared their intention to donate.”...

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Nov. 26

Polar plunge for library dollars

Plungers at Crescent Beach, Shelter Island, N.Y., November 30 (Photo: Beverlea Walz)

Susan Carey Dempsey writes: “A hardy crowd of 126 plungers braved an exceptionally cold day to raise funds for the Shelter Island (N.Y.) Public Library on November 30 in what has become a popular community event. The temperature was 36, but the strong wind blowing at 17 mph made it feel like 26. Numerous entrants decided to stay in their warm cars until just before the starting horn. According to Friends of the Library Treasurer Marian Brownlie, the initial tally of funds raised was about $9,000, and she said additional donations usually come in after the event.”...

Shelter Island (N.Y.) Reporter, Dec. 1
Dewey Decibel podcast

Apply for Libraries Transform Communities Grant

Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant

Library workers can apply for a new annual grant to support innovative and meaningful community engagement efforts in libraries. The Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant will provide $2,000 for a school, public, academic, tribal, or special library to expand its community engagement efforts. Libraries are invited to apply by designing and outlining activities for a library-led community engagement project. Project activities to be covered by the grant may include developing community engagement programs and services; partnering with a community agency that builds the capacity of the community to address an important concern/issue; or creating a program or event that connects the library to a community-identified aspiration or concern. Applications will be accepted between December 2, 2019, and February 3, 2020....

ALA Public Programs Office, Dec. 2

8 best augmented reality games for kids

Screenshot from Thomas and Friends Minis AR game

Laura Cordero writes: “Augmented reality (AR) titles are the perfect way to wow children. They allow you to seamlessly mix fantasy and reality together using your phone or tablet. Just point your phone at a real-life surface and a 3D dragon, alien, or robot—you name it—will appear. We love AR games, and here we’ve compiled some offerings for kids. Here are the best kid-friendly AR games that you can download today on Android or iPhone.”...

Make Use Of, Nov. 29

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