State of America's Libraries report

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State of America's Libraries

The number of reported book challenges topped 700 in 2021—the most since 2000, according to ALA’s report. The report was released April 4 to coincide with National Library Week (April 3–9). It summarizes trends and issues affecting libraries during the previous calendar year and includes the Office for Intellectual Freedom’s Top 10 Most Challenged Books list....

AL: The Scoop, Apr. 4; ALA Communications and Marketing Office, Apr. 4

Preservation Week website

Core: Leadership, Infrastructure, Futures has unveiled a new logo, branding, and for its Preservation Week (April 24–30) public awareness campaign. The new website includes free promotional materials such as bookmarks, PSAs, and honorary chair posters, as well as recorded Preservation Week webinars. This year’s Preservation Week theme will be “Preservation in the Face of Climate Change,” highlighting the effects of climate change on our shared cultural heritage materials. UPROSE Executive Director Elizabeth Yeampierre will serve as the 2022 honorary chair....

Core, Apr. 1

Thinking Money for All Kids

ALA and the FINRA Investor Education Foundation have released , a free booklet for library workers. The guide highlights 40 recommended titles that tell stories and share skills related to personal finance and financial capability for children. A team of librarian advisors selected the titles, with particular attention to eschewing stereotypes and embracing diversity. The guide also includes sections on building a diverse financial education collection, program ideas, resources, and tips....

ALA’s Public Programs Office, Apr. 1

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Virtual field trip

Becca Munson writes: “I was very sad when the Google Expeditions app was no longer available. I utilized the app with classes to virtually visit different countries, colleges, and historical places. Good news! Many (not all) expeditions can now be found in Google Arts and Culture. Google Arts and Culture is a website and app with virtual tours of art museums around the world, artist features, and more. The site includes virtual fields trips that students can access with a mobile device or a laptop.”...

Knowledge Quest blog, Mar. 29

State Archives Service of Ukraine logo

Jody Serrano writes that after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, German historian Sebastian Majstorovic recognized the threat to Ukrainian knowledge and cultural heritage. In collaboration with Anna Kijas, head of Lilly Music Library at Tufts University, and Quinn Dombrowski, academic technology specialist at Stanford University, he launched the , which has so far created digital backups of almost 20 terabytes of data from more than 2,700 Ukrainian museums, libraries, and archives....

Gizmodo, Apr. 2

Children with cardboard

Renee Neumeier and Jenette Sturges write: “After several years of one-off projects that were, frankly, a bit stale, the Evanston (Ill.) Public Library teen services staff and EvanSTEM staff asked, ‘How can we get students to pursue a long-term project to build and strengthen STEM skills and bring the community together to celebrate their work?’ Inspired by a cardboard mini-golf showcase fundraiser and YouTube’s famous story, the concept for Evanston’s Cardboard Carnival was born. The Cardboard Carnival challenges students across Evanston to construct and program arcade games from cardboard and supplied programming tools.”...

OCLC WebJunction, Mar. 28; Nirvan Mullick’s YouTube channel, Apr. 9, 2012

Spacesaver ad

Census website

Randy Seaver writes: “After the US National Archives provided access to the 1950 US Census images on their website (including a rudimentary index) on the morning of April 1, it took less than two days for Ancestry.com, MyHeritage.com and FamilySearch to download, install, and link up all of the 1950 US Census images for their customers to browse for free. There is no index yet on the websites of the three companies, but they are all working on providing an index in the coming weeks and months.”...

Genea-Musings, Apr. 3

Poetry broadside

Danna Bell writes: “Have you seen posters or fliers around your neighborhood or a city you’ve visited? Even with social media access growing by the day, posters and fliers are often still used to spread the news. Since the advent of movable type, people have used posters—also known as broadsides—to get information out quickly. A number of publishers printed broadsides as a way to highlight poets and their poetry. Some small presses such as the Unicorn Press and Laboratory Press of the Carnegie Institute of Technology used them as a way to share poetry outside of books.”...

Library of Congress Blogs: From the Catbird Seat, Mar. 30

Falkon logo

Tashreef Shareef writes: “Modern web browsers offer exceptional performance, are more reliable, and offer tons of customization options. However, all this comes at the cost of system performance. While not an issue with modern systems, modern browsers like Firefox, Chrome and Edge may not support or work smoothly on legacy hardware. If you can live without all the bells and whistles of new-age browsers, there are many great bare-bones web browsers to consider. Here we show you the best lightweight web browsers to help you browse the web smoothly on your older hardware.”...

MakeUseOf, Mar. 30

National Poetry Month ad

Child playing with blocks

Ashlie Swicker writes: “When people think about elementary school libraries, play is not necessarily something that jumps to the front of the mind. However, play in the elementary school library is crucial for socialization, community building, and creating a positive association with the library. Far from the stereotypes of shushing women with tight buns and dusty encyclopedias, modern libraries are constructed to invite curiosity and answer questions. School libraries in particular can offer a very specific kind of joy and relief by offering a chance to play.”...

Book Riot, Mar. 28

Archivist in a salt mine

A new video from Tom Scott takes viewers inside Deepstore, an archive located about 150 meters underground and a kilometer into a working salt mine near Winsford, England. The mine retains large salt pillars to maintain a stable roof and create rooms. The salt keeps the atmosphere naturally dry, and racks prevent any direct contact between salt and the stored artifacts. While most of the contents of the mine are private, Deepstore is known to hold files from the UK’s National Archives and core samples from soil tests for the Crossrail railway construction in London....

Tom Scott’s YouTube channel, Mar. 28


Anjanette Delgado writes: “When I was editing the anthology Home in Florida: Latinx Writers and the Literature of Uprootedness, I read and reread the stories of immigrant and bicultural displacement of great writers. You don’t have to be an immigrant to know the fear and loneliness of uprootedness. Sometimes life, your own, kicks you out of it, and tired of choking in your sleep, you do it: uproot yourself, pack up, and go where you don’t (yet) belong. But nobody stays a stranger to their surroundings forever. Here are seven books about uprootedness.”...

Electric Lit, Mar. 29

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