Ideas to Make Your Library Shine

Sharing ideas from around the system & around the country, on programming, fundraising, grants, free stuff, and more.
Brought to you by the Winnefox Library System.

Get Ready for Teen Tech Week, March 4 - 10

Teen Tech™ Week is March 4 - 10, 2018, and this year's theme of  "Libraries Are For Creating" encourages teens to take advantage of tools offered by your library to become content creators, and to leverage library resources to share their creations.

Use these free resources to make Teen Tech Week a success at your library:

Teen Tech™ Week is a national initiative sponsored by Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) (a division of the American Library Association) that's aimed at teens, their parents, educators and other concerned adults. It's when libraries can showcase all of the great digital resources and services that are available, to help teens succeed in school and prepare for college and 21st century careers.

Millions of teens do not have access to a home computer and, were it not for libraries, would miss opportunities to gain important digital literacy skills.  Libraries offer a bridge across the digital divide. Libraries also recognize that digital media plays an important part in a teens’ life.  That is why more libraries than ever are helping teens build critical digital literacy skills, which they will use to obtain scholarships, secure jobs, effectively manage their online identity and more. 

Source: Teen Tech Week website
Image credit for Teen Tech™ week logo: YALSA


Summer Library Program Grant Funds Available

Summer Reading Grants from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation provide funding to libraries to help implement or expand summer reading programs.

Eligibility: libraries who...

  • target Pre-K through 12th-grade students who are new readers, below grade level readers, or who are readers with learning disabilities
  • are located within 20 miles of a Dollar General store; use their Store Locator Map to see if your library is eligible to apply

How to apply: begin at their 5-question eligibility quiz to register your library, and then fill out the online application.

Deadline to apply: February 22, 2018 (by 10 pm CST)

Maximum grant amount: $3000

Photo credit: rawpixel on Unsplash


Free Webinars in January

ImagePlan to attend these free webinars; all you need is your computer & speakers or headphones (no microphone needed.) If you attend a live webinar, it may be counted as a Category B continuing education activity towards renewing librarian certification.

Webinars with a ★ are the ones I think you'll find most useful.


19 Webinars in 3 Days: Wild Wisconsin Winter Web Conference

The 6th annual Wild Wisconsin Winter Web Conference is full of great info, and you don't need to drive anywhere to attend it — participate from your desk, home, or on the go.

19 one-hour sessions are scheduled over three days: Tuesday, January 23 through Thursday January 25, 2018. In addition to the keynote, there are concurrent sessions in 5 tracks, plus a Kick Starter and a closing session:

Attend as many sessions as you'd like; they'll all be recorded so you can watch any that you miss. Here's the schedule:

Tuesday, January 23:    
Librarians and Bartenders: Why People Need Us (keynote) 1 - 2pm register
Wednesday, January 24:    
Best of the Web 2018 9 - 10am register
Not Just For Kids: After Hours Programming for Adults 9 - 10am register
Sharpening the Bleeding Edge: Four Technologies that Librarians Should Watch 10:30 - 11:30am register
Developing Dynamic Leadership for Your Library 10:30 - 11:30am register
The Wild Introvert: Why Quieter People Are Excellent Leaders 1 - 2pm register
Practical Privacy for Libraries 1 - 2pm register
Ethics in the 21st Century Library 2:30 - 3:30pm register
Strategic Planning When You Can't Afford a Consultant 2:30 - 3:30pm register
Tech Notes from the Field 4 - 5pm register
Managing a Vibrant Volunteer Program 4 - 5pm register
Thursday, January 25:    
How to Become a Great Speaker: A Step By Step Guide 9 - 10am register
Part-Time Employees – Big Time Impact 10:30 - 11:30am register
Is There an App for That? Working With Young People in the Digital Age 10:30 - 11:30am register
Building Respect Inside the Library Walls 1 - 2pm register
Huge Impact, Low Cost 1 - 2pm register
Above and Beyond: Developing a Culture of Organizational Citizenship 2:30 - 3:30pm register
Building Family Engagement Systems Within and Across Library Services 2:30 - 3:30pm register
Trials and Triumphs for a Public Library Facilities Manager 4 - 5pm register

Contact hours for continuing education toward public librarian re-certification: 1 per webinar; some sessions may qualify as technology-related activities.  All sessions will be recorded, and will be available for viewing here soon after each session.

To participate: all you need for the visual is either...
• an internet-connected computer; you can run the system check ahead of time, or
• an iOS®, Android®, or Windows® mobile device; just download the free GoToWebinar app ahead of time
For the audio, either...
• headphones, earbuds, or speakers connected to your computer, or
• use a telephone or speakerphone to call in (long distance rates apply)

New to webinars?
• Read the Join Guide or watch the 4-minute Attendee Quick Start video so you'll know what to expect.
• As soon as you register for a webinar, a confirmation email will be sent to you that contains a link to join the webinar at the appointed date and time.
• You'll receive an email reminder prior to each webinar, which will have a link which reads, "Click here to join" — this is the link you'll click to connect to a session.
• Before joining a webinar session, please turn off any other software or processes on your computer that would compete with your Internet bandwidth. (Programs like automatic updates, instant messaging, email, etc., if running during the webinar, may degrade the quality of the webinar's audio and video.)

The Wild Wisconsin Winter Web Conference is a state-wide virtual conference developed by the Nicolet Federated Library System and supported by 15 other library systems and the DPI in Wisconsin. Because of this collaboration, all sessions are available to you at no cost.


Gorgeous Free Photos for Websites, Flyers & Social Media Posts

When you need a photo for your website or a Facebook post, or want to illustrate a promotional flyer or newsletter, I recommend checking Unsplash.

There are many websites where you can find photos, but the quality isn't always the best, stock photography sites charge a fee, and images at Flickr often come with licenses that restrict how you use an image. Here's how Unsplash is different:

Over 300,000 free (do whatever you want) high-resolution photos brought to you by the world’s most generous community of photographers.
All photos published on Unsplash can be used for free. You can use them for commercial and noncommercial purposes. You do not need to ask permission from or provide credit to the photographer or Unsplash, although it is appreciated when possible.
More precisely, Unsplash grants you an irrevocable, nonexclusive copyright license to download, copy, modify, distribute, perform, and use photos from Unsplash for free, including for commercial purposes, without permission from or attributing the photographer or Unsplash.
Even though credit isn't required, Unsplash photographers appreciate a credit as it provides exposure to their work and encourages them to continue sharing. A credit can be as simple as adding their name with a link to their profile or photo ...

Unsplash images have a Creative Commons Zero license that lets a person download, copy, alter, and distribute a photo for free ("no rights reserved".)

Take a look at these sample search results for...

Hat tip: Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) and The Web's Premier Free Photo Library Opens Up Its Vaults
Photo credit: Photo by Daniela Rey on Unsplash


Holiday Marketing Kit

OverDrive has lots of ready-to-post graphics you can use this holiday season to promote your digital collection. Their Holiday Marketing Kit includes:

  • Use the "Tablet under the tree? Start reading — it's free!" image accompanied by details or a link to how patrons can start using the Libby app to get ebooks, audiobooks, music and video on their new gadgets
  • When you post that your library will be closed for the holidays or because of a snowstorm, include "The library is closed, but digital collection is always open" image
  • After the holidays, edit the "How does this thing work" document to add your library's name, dates & times they can come in for help, and customize the link to your library's digital collection (see screenshot below)
  • There's a "New Year's Resolutions" image you can use, and you can list some titles on topics like eating healthy, getting organized, starting an exercise plan, and saving money that you think patrons would like
  • In January, for patrons who may be traveling to tropical climes to avoid the Wisconsin winter weather, use the "Going on a holiday? Carry a whole series in your carry-on" photo

Some of the images are specially-sized to look good on your library's digital display, as well as on your website, in print, and on social media.

When you use the images, make sure to use some explanatory text with info and links to your digital collection; here are sample phrases you can copy and paste.

Apply for Books from the Coretta Scott King Book Awards Committee

Every year, in the process of choosing the Coretta Scott King Book Award winners and honor books, the Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table of the American Library Association receives multiple copies of approximately 60-100 titles by African American authors and illustrators, including a full set of the year's winning and honor titles.

This grant program provides books submitted for consideration for the Coretta Scott King Book Awards to libraries and other organizations to expand their collections. Each year, three organizations are selected that demonstrate need and potential benefit from receiving the collection.

Criteria and details and online application form
Deadline: January 31, 2018
Award: 3 libraries will receive copies of more than 60 titles submitted for consideration for the 2017 awards, including a full set of the winning titles

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards are presented annually by the Coretta Scott King Book Awards Committee of the ALA’s Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table to encourage the artistic expression of the African-American experience via literature and the graphic arts.

Here's a list of all the award-winning books from 1970 to 2017.

Subscribe to Front page feed