Front-loaded reading initiatives.

American Library Association • May 7, 2019

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Books + bubbles = Laundromat literacy

Chicago Public Library STEAM Team First Assistant Librarian Alejandra Santana (left) reads to storytime attendees at Bubbleland laundromat. Photo by Chicago Public Library

Anne Ford writes: “Laundry: It’s got to be done. And if you’re in a family with small children and no washer or dryer at home, it’s got to be done at the neighborhood laundromat—probably every week, probably on the same day every week, and probably with those children in tow. That’s why, in 1989, Chicago Public Library Children’s Librarian Elizabeth McChesney (now CPL’s director of children’s services and family engagement) visited a local laundromat to introduce herself to families. How she responded to what she saw there would help change the landscape of children’s literacy initiatives for decades to come.”...

American Libraries feature, May

Marketing your teen summer learning program

This is an excerpt from Teen Summer Learning Programs: From Start to Finish, edited by Lenese Colson and Jennifer Luetkemeyer (YALSA, 2018). (Cover shown)

Sarah Amazing writes: “Let’s face it: Teens can be a hard bunch to reach. With sports, camp, jobs, summer school, family vacations, band camp, and other activities keeping them busy during the summer months, they might not think of the library as an important destination. But with the right tools and a solid plan, your summer learning program can be a success. Who do you want to know about summer learning? Parents and caregivers? Teachers? The teens themselves? Other organizations serving youth in the community? While the answer is undoubtedly all four, think about your library and community.”...

American Libraries feature, May

The barriers of LIS internships and practica

In Practice, by Meredith Farkas

Meredith Farkas writes: “In my March/April column, ‘Unintentional Inequity,’ I described how libraries sometimes have policies or practices that, while well intentioned, disproportionately affect certain segments of their service population. This issue touches all institutions and not surprisingly affects LIS education as well. Most LIS programs encourage or even require students to complete a practicum or internship where they get real-life work experience. However, this experience comes at a cost. The existence of unpaid practica and internships in LIS education is a barrier for students without generational wealth, which can undermine diversity efforts.”...

American Libraries column, Mar./Apr., May; LinkedIn, June 4, 2017

Exercise your resources

On My Mind, by Noah Lenstra

Noah Lenstra writes: “The US has more than 4,300 colleges and universities. More likely than not, a college or university is close to you—and partnering with them is a great way to bring high-quality health and wellness programming to your public library. Some institutions are trying to make the process simpler. Here at University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where I work, we have the Collaboratory, a publicly searchable online database that shares information about what faculty members are working on so that off-campus entities can identify appropriate partners.”...

American Libraries column, May
ALA news

2019 National Medals for Museum and Library Service

Jamestown S’Klallam Tribal Library

The Institute of Museum and Library Services announced the 10 recipients of the 2019 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor given to libraries and museums that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Five libraries won the award: Jamestown S’Klallam Tribal Library in Sequim, Washington; New Haven (Conn.) Free Public Library; Gulfport (Fla.) Public Library; Meridian (Idaho) Library District; and the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan....

Institute of Museum and Library Services, May 7

Help young patrons participate in NASA activities

Students learn about space

The NASA Office of STEM Engagement invites proposals from libraries, museums, science centers, youth-serving organizations, and other eligible nonprofits via NASA Teams Engaging Affiliated Museums and Informal Institutions. Proposals must be submitted electronically via the NASA proposal data system NSPIRES or The grant will allow libraries to participate in NASA-based activities and provide students with the opportunity to contribute to NASA’s mission. Proposals are due August 13....

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Guiding students through digital citizenship

Digital citizenship

Academic librarians help build students into digital citizens. They need the tools and resources to be savvy tech users and to become information literate. This 90-minute LITA webinar, “Guiding Students through Digital Citizenship,” on May 16 explores how you can collaborate with students to expand their digital citizenship skills within your campus community through academic departments, technology offices, and student engagement initiatives. Register online....

LITA, May 6

Make queer and questioning users welcome

A 2018 display of young adult books featuring LGBTQ+ characters or themes at the Barbara S. Ponce Public Library in Pinellas Park, Florida

Ana Elisa de Campos Salles writes: “Librarians have consistently ranked top of the list of professions people trust. That has a lot to do with the fact that we are known for keeping people’s information and anything related to how they use our resources private. This is especially important for the younger queer folks who come to the library, some of whom may not yet know how to verbalize who they are. They may not be able to ask or discuss being queer with anyone they know for fear of being judged. How can we make the library a welcoming and safe space for kids and teens to explore their identities without outing them or violating their privacy?”...

Choose Privacy Every Day, May 6
Latest Library Links

Funding rural libraries, New Mexico style

El Rito (N.Mex.) Library banner

J. Lynett Gillette writes: “Facing another year of reduced library funding in our corner of New Mexico, directors and librarians working with five rural libraries in Rio Arriba County actually discussed whether horseback delivery could help us reduce overhead and stay afloat financially. Most of us don’t have a city tax base to help support us. Often, we are one or two payrolls from a zero bank balance. A good step in the right direction in this state is the newly created New Mexico Rural Library Endowment Fund. But it’s certainly not the game-changer we need.”...

Santa Fe New Mexican, May 4

Start binge-reading right now

A binge reader. Art by Gabriel Alcala

Ben Dolnick writes: “One night a couple of summers ago, the power went out and, unable to watch Netflix or engage in my customary internet fugue, I lit a candle and picked up a thriller by Ruth Rendell. For the first time in as long as I could remember, my sole source of entertainment for an evening was going to be a book. What struck me was how much my experience of reading the book was influenced by the speed with which I was suddenly moving through it.┬áBefore my storm-induced Rendell marathon, I’d been reading the wrong way.”...

New York Times Sunday Review, May 4
Dewey Decibel podcast

Create your own fairy garden with a 3D printer

3D-printed fairy and bridge

Maura Lambert writes: “A fairy garden is a small garden with whimsical figurines like dwarfs, fairies, cottages, and other diminutive items. They are lots of fun to create. You can make a fairy garden using 3D printed figurines. Small figurines can be pricey at the store, but using your library’s 3D printer allows you to print out small items to put in your fairy garden. Here is how I created my fairy garden, along with some book recommendations to help you along.”...

Kenton County (Ky.) Public Library, May 6

Makerspace made easy

Magna-Tiles are a big hit with students

Colleen R. Lee writes: “Don’t be intimidated by the idea of setting up a makerspace in your library. If you are an elementary school librarian with a fixed schedule, you may think that you don’t have the time or the space for a makerspace. Creating a makerspace is not as difficult as it seems. The key is to start out small and build your makerspace one step at a time. I have shamelessly stolen my teens’ old Legos for my makerspace. Yard sales, Goodwill, and my own garage have been great places to find inexpensive items.”...

Knowledge Quest blog, May 6

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