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.

Free Marketing Materials for Library Card Sign-up Month

As honorary chairs of Library Card Sign-up Month, Disney Pixar's superhero family, the Incredibles, are using their superpowers to promote the value of a library card this September.

Library Card Sign-up Month artwork and media tools are free and can be downloaded from ALA's Library Card Sign-up Month webpage. The webpage also includes media tools for libraries to help remind the public of all the resources available with a library card.

The artwork includes:

  • social media graphics, including a Facebook cover image
  • posters
  • customizable library cards
  • billboards.

The media tools include:

  • sample press releases (English and Spanish)
  • proclamations (English and Spanish)
  • radio PSA scripts.(English and Spanish)
  • sample tweets

Posters, stickers and bookmarks "starring" the Incredibles are available for purchase through the ALA Store.

Library Card Sign-up Month is a time to bring attention to the supportive role libraries and librarians play in transforming lives and communities through education. Since 1987, Library Card Sign-up Month has been held each September to mark the beginning of the school year. During the month, the American Library Association and libraries join together in a national effort to ensure every child signs up for their own library card.

“Incredibles 2” was released in theaters on June 15. Helen (voice of Holly Hunter) is in the spotlight, while Bob (voice of Craig T. Nelson) navigates the day-to-day heroics of “normal” life at home when a new villain hatches a brilliant and dangerous plot that only the Incredibles can overcome together. This past May, the new picture book “Incredibles 2: Sweet Dreams: Jack-Jack” was released. It follows the youngest member of the Incredibles – Jack-Jack – as he makes mischief.

Source: Library Card Sign-up Month artwork starring the Incredibles now available


Free 1-Day Online Conference on YA Books, Aug. 15th

You can attend a free, daylong SLJTeen Live online virtual conference on August 15, 2018: it will "... feature high-profile and up-and-coming YA authors talking about their latest titles for teens. You'll also have the chance to get advice from innovative librarians tackling timely issues relevant to your teens and services."

Register here ("Registration includes access to the SLJTeen Live! archives for on-demand viewing at your convenience.")

Schedule (Central Daylight Time):
8:00 – 9:00 AM: Explore the exhibits
9:00 – 10:00 AM: Opening keynote, presented by Elizabeth Acevedo, Author, The Poet X (HarperCollins, 2018)
10:15 AM – 11:15 AM: Two panels running concurrently:
1) Mental Health in YA. #EndTheStigma. Mental health and mental illness are finally getting more attention, but everywhere from healthcare to media still struggle with how to treat, identify, and represent it thoughtfully. These authors will discuss how they craft characters and write stories that present authentic experiences of mental illness that can be validating to readers who share them and eye-opening to readers who do not.
2) Creativity Unbound: The Arts in YA. STEM gets the attention, but the arts are just as valuable for teens' development and future plans. That goes for producing it and loving it. These authors will discuss how they created stories that star teen-aged characters who appreciate or participate (or both) in the arts.
11:15 – 11:40 AM: Break, explore the exhibits
11:40 AM – 12:00 PM: Lunch speaker: Sabaa Tahir, Author, "An Ember in the Ashes" series (Penguin/Razorbill)
12:00 – 1:00 PM: Two panels running concurrently:
1) Stories Retold and Worlds Reimagined: Fantastical YA.
2) Detoxing Masculinity. "Toxic masculinity" is the stringent adherence to gender roles and stereotypes, governing and defining what are "acceptable" emotions and behavior. In the age of #MeToo, school shootings, and incels, how do we redefine what it means to be men and boys? These authors will discuss how they interrogate and unpack masculinity in their work and consider their responsibility as authors for young people of all genders.
1:00 – 2:00 PM: Two panels running concurrently; the afternoon programming panels will feature librarians and professionals sharing trends, tips and practical solutions to engage your YA patrons
2:00 – 2:15 PM: break
2:15 – 3:15 PM: Two panels running concurrently; the afternoon programming panels will feature librarians and professionals sharing trends, tips and practical solutions to engage your YA patrons
3:15 – 3:45 PM: Closing keynote presented by Dhonielle Clayton, Author, The Belles (Disney/Freeform, 2018)

Join thousands of librarians for the seventh annual SLJTeen Live! virtual conference, without leaving the comfort of your home (or desk).

This free, daylong event will feature high-profile and up-and-coming YA authors talking about their latest titles for teens. You'll also have the chance to get advice from innovative librarians tackling timely issues relevant to your teens and services.

This year's theme is Speaking Truth to Power. The youth of Generation Z have shown themselves to be powerful agents of change who won't tolerate silence, indifference, or oppression. Today's young adult literature and youth services librarians must rise to meet their needs and passions.

The conference's author panels and library programming sessions will give you tools and ideas on how to engage teens and support them as they continue to make their mark on the world. Trends in publishing are beginning to acknowledge Gen Z's unique positioning in today's fast-paced and highly politicized society, and even evergreen topics in library services deserve a second look to see how they can support teens coming of age in this era. These panels will equip you with the tools, information, and book savvy you need to re-energize your programming and collections.

Explore the virtual exhibit hall, download materials, enter contests, hear directly from publishers about their newest books as well as live chat with staff, authors and peers.

Source: SLJTeen Live!


Nominate a Person, a Group, or Library for a 2018 WLA Award

The Wisconsin Library Association is accepting applications and nomiations for WLA Awards for 2018, so you can nominate innovative and exceptional library services, staff, trustees, and supporters in Wisconsin. Winners will be honored at the 2018 WLA Conference during the Awards and Honors Reception.

Go to WLS's Awards & Honors page for details, criteria, forms, and instructions to apply.  Applications are due September 1, 2018.

Here is a list the WLA 2018 Awards:

  • Citation of Merit: Conferred upon Wisconsin citizens who are neither librarians nor library trustees, who have made outstanding contributions to quality library services. This award may be given to a group of people or an individual.
  • Library of the Year Award: Presented to any type of Wisconsin library, library system or library network for distinguished achievement in service. The staff, library board or administering body, and the community or people served shall all be involved in the work for which recognition is sought.
  • WLA/DEMCO Librarian of the Year Award: In recognition of a librarian's outstanding leadership and accomplishment in library service. The librarian must be currently employed, at the time of selection, in any field of librarianship in Wisconsin and must be a current member of the WLA.
  • Trustee of the Year Award: Conferred upon an outstanding Wisconsin library trustee. The trustee must be in actual service during all or part of the year in which he or she is honored.
  • SSCS Paralibrarian Award: The Wisconsin Library Association’s Support Staff and Circulation Services (SSCS) Paralibrarian of the Year Award recognizes the essential role of paralibrarians (a.k.a. paraprofessionals), including all library support staff who do not currently have an MLIS, in providing excellent library service in Wisconsin. This award places special emphasis on efforts to further the role of paralibrarians and library support staff in the library profession.
  • The Muriel Fuller Award: Conferred upon a library professional or paraprofessional in recognition of outstanding accomplishments which have significantly improved and benefited library services.
  • Programming Innovation Award: Presented in recognition of programming leadership in providing innovative and excellent library programming in Wisconsin libraries. Nominated programs may be stand-alone programs, series, passive or cooperative. Programs for all age groups are eligible.
  • Special Service Award: Presented to a group of people or an individual for noteworthy achievement as evidenced by substantial activities and exceptional service to the library profession. The Wisconsin recipient or recipients shall have influence and reputation beyond the local community.
  • Wisconsin Distinguished Document Award: Presented to an excellent Wisconsin state or local government document that contributes significantly to the expansion of knowledge and the understanding of government agencies, among other criteria.
  • Literary Awards: The Literary Awards Committee of the Readers' Section selects outstanding books by Wisconsin-connected authors: the WLA Literary Award, Outstanding Books of the Year, and Notable Wisconsin Authors.
  • WLA/WEMTA Intellectual Freedom Award: Administered by the WLA/WEMTA Intellectual Freedom Award Committee, with funding from and the Center for Information Policy Research and the School of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Recognizes the contribution of an individual or group who has actively promoted intellectual freedom in Wisconsin.
  • Elizabeth Burr/Worzalla Award and Children's Book Awards: The Children's Book Awards Committee of the WLA Youth Services Section selects outstanding books for youth by Wisconsin-connected authors: the Elizabeth Burr/Worzalla Award, Outstanding Books of the Year, and Notable Wisconsin Authors/Illustrators.
  • WAAL Information Literacy Award: Presented to an individual or group activity that promotes effective instruction, learning and/or collaboration relating to the Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians (WAAL) information literacy competencies.

Screen-Free Family Night Programs

As part of their summer reading program, the Princeton (WI) Public Library is inviting everyone to "turn off your phones and TVs, and come down to the library for a screen free night of family fun."

By offering these low-cost programs in the evening, caregivers of children who work during the day have the opportunity to attend events with kids too. And branding the series as "screen-free" offers caregivers a break away from ever-present tech devices.

Here's what the library is offering in the series:

  • Board Game Night
    • This week we are getting out the classic board games from Monopoly to Scrabble to Rummikub to Sorry. Or bring along your favorite.
  • S'Mores and Ghost Stories
    • This week we are breaking out the campfire and making s'mores. Plus ghost stories. The program will be held outdoors if the weather is convenient.
  • Lawn Games
    • This week we are heading outside and play some lawn games. From yard yahtzee, to giant jenga, to croquet, sidewalk chalk and more. Children of all ages can participate and have a good evening of family fun.
  • Talent Night
    • It is the end of our Summer Reading Program and we want to recognize all the talents of our wonderful patrons. All children can participate with music programs, skits, poems and more. Let a Librarian know how you would like to participate and we will sign you up. And family members, please come down and cheer on your loved ones.

Here's the library's full calendar of July events.

Photo credit: Fil.Al at Flickr, Attribution 2.0 Generic; hat tip to Photos For Class


Best Apps for Teaching & Learning

Over two dozen of the best iOS and Android apps for teaching and learning have recently been chosen by the American Association of School Librarians, and they're not just kid stuff!

Fnd them all at Best Apps for Teaching & Learning 2018, and to whet your "app-etite" here are ones you might find most useful:

  • Clips
    • "Turn your iPhone into a video production studio ... Create and edit dynamic videos with the ability to add subtitles, animated stickers, filters, and music, all within the app."
  • Complete Fairytale Play Theatre
    • "Users can choose from among 60 characters and tell the classics or rethink/enhance the tales."
  • Google Spotlight Stories
    • "This app puts the reader in the middle of a growing number of virtual reality stories and demonstrates new possibilities for interactive storytelling. Each of the stories is a 360 video experience to be viewed within a VR viewer or on a device or screen."
  • GooseChase
    • "... combines scavenger hunts with mobile technology ... to create and facilitate a customized scavenger hunt. Create a game on the GooseChase website and add missions from the mission list or make your own missions. Students use the app to join your game..."
  • Hopscotch: Make Games
    • “Coding may sound a bit dry and daunting ... but those are the last things that come to mind while using Hopscotch. The app lets you have as much fun making games as playing them, and with its colorful, friendly interface and stacks of help and tutorials, kids (and grown-ups!) can build all kinds of apps—while learning the fundamentals of programming."
  • Metaverse – AR Browser
    • "... the easiest way to create Augmented Reality experiences. Create mobile games and choose your own adventure interactive stories using the Metaverse Studio and watch them come to life in the Metaverse app browser."
  • Office Lens
    • "Capture and crop a picture of a whiteboard or blackboard and share your meeting notes with co-workers." "Printed and handwritten text will be automatically recognized (using OCR), so you can search for words in images and then copy and edit them."
  • RelationShapes
    • "Geared towards early childhood, RelationShapes allows young users to move and resize shapes on one side of an axis, then create a matching image on the other side. After each level, new shapes and stickers are unlocked to create fun pictures."
  • Science Journal
    • "Turn your phone into a light, sound, and motion sensor. Measure these experimental variables with greater accuracy and create detailed data displays."

Best Apps for Teaching & Learning

After-Hours Programs for All Ages

The Corvallis-Benton County (Oregon) Public Library (CBCPL) has been hosting after-hours events for all ages called "Takeovers", and three of their staff have provided information you can use on...

  • the origin of the idea for CBCPL’s Takeovers
  • how these events are planned and coordinated
  • tips for any library interested in hosting their own Takeovers, and
  • the ways in which these events tie into the CBCPL mission

The libary's Takeovers involve crafts, video games, Nerf games, and more — all while the library is closed.
Each Takeover event is tailored to a specifc age group (either tweens, teens, or adults) and people from outside that age group are not permitted in the library during the event.

The events enrich participants’ lives through social interaction and play.
The events are intrinsically exciting and they give the specifc age group targeted a sense of ownership of the library space.
The events encourage exploration by bringing many brand new people to the library and introducing them to a range of activities available in our space.
Though these events can feel chaotic, the excitement and energy of everyone involved in Takeovers is uplifting, thrilling, and completely different from what we typically see at library events.

Ripon Public Library has been hosting Nerf Battles since March 2016, and they have both Teens Only (ages12-17) and Adults-only (ages 18+) events on the calendar for this summer.

• Brzozowski, B., Johnson, E., & Kemper Hodge, K. (2018). Library Takeovers: After Hours Nerf Games and More at the Corvallis-Benton County Public Library. OLA Quarterly, 23(4), 35-39.
• Upcoming Nerf Battles at Ripon Public Library: Teens Only (ages12-17) and Adults-only (ages 18+)

Photo credit: Family Nerf night fosters advocacy


Teen Reading & Discussion Program: Great Stories Club Grant

The American Library Association (ALA) is accepting applications for the Great Stories Club, a grant program in which library workers lead reading and discussion programs with underserved teens in their communities.

Application and guidelines:
Deadline: July 9, 2018

Grantees will receive:

  • 11 paperback copies of up to four book selections (10 to gift to participants; one for discussion leader/library collection)
  • Travel and accommodation expenses paid for one staff member to attend a 1½-day project orientation workshop in Chicago
  • Programming materials, including discussion guides, related reading lists and promotional resources

Watch this webinar recording to get...

  • An overview of the Great Stories Club program and application process
  • A review of the grant requirements
  • Instructions for the online application process, including the option to apply for two Great Stories Club grants at once and select 3-4 books from a longer reading list
  • Strategies for establishing or stengthening a community outreach partnership

Working with small groups of approximately 10 teens, grantees will host reading and discussion programs for up to four thematically related books. The titles — selected in consultation with librarian advisors and humanities scholars — are chosen to resonate with reluctant readers struggling with complex issues like academic probation, detention, incarceration, violence and poverty.

All types of libraries are eligible, as long as they work in partnership with, or are located within, organizations that serve under-resourced youth, such as alternative high schools, juvenile justice organizations, homeless shelters, foster care agencies, teen parenting programs, residential treatment facilities and other nonprofit and community agencies. Libraries located in high-poverty communities are also eligible to apply, though outreach partnerships with youth-focused organizations are still encouraged.

Apply now for the Great Stories Club, a reading and discussion programs for underserved teens
Great Stories Club website
webinar recording

Photo credit: Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library in Topeka, KS via Flickr, Creative Commons License 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0); photo was modified by cropping and resizing image

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