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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: ALA Annual 2011, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Call for Papers: Library Research Round Table

Here’s another thing to get you geared up for ALA’s Annual Conference in Anaheim this June. The Library Research Round Table is looking for presentation proposals related to three areas of library research. Abstracts must be submitted by December 20, 2011, and notification of acceptance will be sent in late February, 2012. Accepted proposals will be presented at the ALA Annual from June 21-26. If you have recent or in-progress research relating to users, problem solving, or innovation, consider submitting.

LRRT defines their three categories as this:

  • Research to Understand Users: Issues and Approaches – How do people go about using libraries? If your study addresses the hows and whys of patron usage, it’ll fit here.
  • Research into Practical Problem Solving in Libraries – If you have been investigating a specific challenge or problem, your research or case study will fit into this category.
  • Research: Creativity and Innovation – If your study looks at how librarians approach information and reference queries, or if it proposes innovative ways of doing research or solving problems, it will fit here.
  • Papers will be chosen based on their topic and its relevance to library science, creativity of methodology, and ability to fill a research gap or build on existing studies. You do not have to be a member of LRRT to submit a proposal, and students are welcome to submit as well.

    If you have questions or would like full information on submission guidelines, contact the chair of LRRT, John M. Budd, at buddj@missouri.edu. Again, proposals are due by December 20, 2011.

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    2. Student-to-Staff Perspectives: Annual ‘Thrilling to Attend’

    The 2011 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans was an exciting and highly entertaining event. I felt so fortunate to work with ALSC through the Student-to-Staff program. The weekend was fun, hectic, exhausting, and exhilarating.

    Many of programs I attended and worked at were enlightening educational experiences that taught me things I could imagine any children’s librarian using daily as they strive to better their services. One such program was “Criss-Cross Applesauce: Multi-Age Story Times” by Kathy Klatt and Saroj Ghoting, where the speakers introduced the ideas of continuous story time and sequential story time in a very creative and interactive way. “Before and After Harry Potter: Fantasy for Grades 3-5 and 5-8” was a very informative session that gave children’s and young adult librarians a plethora of titles that could help guide young readers through the exciting genre of fantasy.

    Some of the other events I attended were simply thrilling to attend, such as the Newbery/Caldecott/Wilder Banquet and the ALSC Awards. The Newbery Banquet was easily the highlight was my weekend. It was wonderful to be in a room with so many other people who shared my enthusiasm for children’s literature. Newbery winner Clare Vanderpool’s witty speech perfectly captured the plucky attitude of her book’s heroine, Abilene, while Caldecott winner Erin Stead’s humble and awestruck acceptance surely touched everyone in the room. Tomie diPaola, who took home the Wilder award, charmed the entire audience and, just like in his books, he managed to bring a smile to everyone’s face.

    The next morning at the ALSC Awards, I was blown away to see even more fabulous authors and illustrators (Kate DiCamillo, Mo Willems, and Grace Lin, to name a few) honored for their work. The weekend seemed to fly by and before I knew it, it was time to go home. I know that I’ll look back on the lessons and experiences of ALA 2011 for years to come. I am truly grateful to ALSC and the wonderful people I worked with over the weekend for giving me such an enjoyable experience.

    Our guest blogger today is Emily Brupbacher, MLIS student at the School of Library and Information Science at the Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, La.

    If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at alscblog@gmail.com.

    0 Comments on Student-to-Staff Perspectives: Annual ‘Thrilling to Attend’ as of 7/29/2011 10:29:00 PM
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    3. Inspired by international books for children

    I was inspired by the #ALA11 panel discussion presented by the United States Board on Book for Young People (USBBY) entitled, “Independent Publishers-International Children’s Books.” Representatives from four US independent publishers shared their thoughts on international books. Groundwood Books, Kane Miller Books, NorthSouth Books, and Chronicle Books each shared about their particular vision, story, and favorite titles.

    I was particularly moved by Kira Lynn, of Kane Miller, as she talked about the quieter, subtler sensibility that foreign children books can bring to our children. “And that can be as simple as what people are having for dinner, what their apartment looks like, or how they dress.” Ms. Lynn continued on by drawing comparisons between going to foreign films and reading foreign books, that there’s a moment when you become so engrossed in the story – because it is truly about story, after all – that you forget that you are in a different place, and the different becomes familiar. Ms. Lynn told her audience,

    “And so it is with foreign children’s books. They allow the reader to comfortably, effortlessly, fall into another way of life. They bring to their readers a level of understanding that comes from seeing the world through someone else’s eyes. The beauty of children’s literature, for us, the beauty of children’s literature from other countries, is that it forces us to think, to place ourselves in all kinds of times, in all kinds of worlds and in venues other than the familiar, with all kinds of people we otherwise would not have met.”

    And so I left the ALA meeting inspired to share more international books with my students, talking about what makes these books feel different, but also what brings us together as we look at these books. I am also inspired to join the USBBY, an organization I have been wanting to join for some time now. For those who are interested, a wonderful resource is the USBBY Outstanding International Books List, available online.

    1 Comments on Inspired by international books for children, last added: 6/30/2011
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    4. Annual in New Orleans: A Student-to-Staff Perspective

    Since September of last year, I have been ALSC’s awards intern. It was a pleasure to continue my work with ALSC as their Student-to-Staff volunteer at Annual Conference. As a first-time Annual attendee and visitor to the Big Easy, I had no idea what to expect. There were many times when I was overwhelmed, such as the first time I stepped into the Exhibition Hall that housed over 900 exhibitors. But there were also many great moments.

    In between greeting and distributing surveys, I had the chance to listen to seven, unique ALSC workshops. During these workshops, I had the opportunity to hear panels that included many talented individuals—including best-selling authors and illustrators, book and media award winners, and an expert in the field of autism. All aspects of the ALSC workshops I attended were enjoyable, but some of the highlights included: Pat Mora’s poetic way of speaking; Carla Killough McClafferty’s description of waking up at Mount Vernon and seeing the same sunrise that George Washington saw over two-hundred years ago; Ingrid Law’s advice that when you can’t write well, keep writing poorly and, eventually, good things will come; and discovering Cynthia Lord’s touching book about a sister who has a brother with autism.

    In addition to the workshops I attended, I was also an attendee at the Newbery-Caldecott-Wilder Banquet, which was one part of Annual Conference that was exactly as I expected: fabulous. I have never heard a speech as honest as the one given by Caldecott Medal winner, Erin E. Stead. Newbery Medal winner, Clare Vanderpool’s, speech offered humorous and anecdotal stories about growing up in the Midwest, which, being from Iowa (cue: applause), is something I can relate to. Wilder Medal winner, Tomie dePaola, left me with an image of a charming, four-year-old, tap-dancing and singing Tomie.

    Altogether, Annual Conference was a positive experience that I would not have been able to be a part of without the support of the American Library Association and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Thank you to ALA, UWM, and ALSC!

    Our guest blogger today is Allison Payne, MLIS student at the School of Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

    If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at alscblog@gmail.com.

    1 Comments on Annual in New Orleans: A Student-to-Staff Perspective, last added: 7/2/2011
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    5. Wilder times

    Coming back from ALA is always time for reflection. When the conference is in a city like New Orleans, one of my favorite cities in the world, the reflection includes fun times, music, and great food. But this ALA conference was a little different for me. As a member of the 2011 Laura Ingalls Wilder Committee, I got to meet and spend a little time with our chosen awardee, Tomie dePaola. Not only did I get to have lunch with a legend in children’s literature, I got to meet a really nice, interesting, and fun man. Tomie dePaola is gracious — he was so genuinely happy to win the Wilder Award, and treated our committee with nearly as much awe as we have for him. I can honestly say that serving on the Wilder committee has been one of the shining moments in my career as a librarian. With the daunting task of reading, for TWO years, the complete works of quite a few heavy hitters in children’s lit, I thought it might sometimes get tiring. It never did. Even though I missed out on some of the new books I wanted to read, and even though I declined many an invite in favor of staying home to read a stack of books, it was a truly wonderful and eye-opening experience, shared with four other insightful and brilliant people. The rewards of choosing Tomie dePaola certainly became clear to me after our announcement was made public. So many people agreed with us! Our committee was quite proud to come to the conclusion that for the five people sitting in that hotel room in San Diego, the right, perfect choice was Tomie dePaola. So if you’ve read this far and are still wondering what exactly the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award is for, think of it as a lifetime achievement award for children’s book authors and illustrators. The official definition states that the award, given every two years, “honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.” For more information, here’s the link on the ALSC site. If you are a member of ALSC, you can help the 2013 committee by sending suggestions to Martha Parravano, the chair of the 2013 committee at mparravano@hbook.com. And I highly recommend that you go read every Tomie dePaola book you can get your hands on, all at once, and immerse yourself in the mastery of storytelling and illustration that his books provide. Congratulations, once again, Tomie dePaola!

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    6. Check out ALA Connect for handouts from the Annual Conference

    The ALA Conference held last month in New Orleans offered a wealth of information to all the attendees. If you missed the conference, many of the handouts, presentations, and powerpoints are now available online at ALA Connect. As an ALSC member you can simply login and find out more information about:

    • Saroj Ghoting and Kathy Klatt’s presentation entitled Criss Cross Applesauce: Making Multiage Storytimes the Best They Can Be  (You might remember the ALSC  blog post by Mary Ann Scheuer wrote on this presentation.)
    • Adding your voice to the Strategic Focus Discussion which began at ALA.  (Here’s an ALSC blog post about this conversation.)
    • Handouts from the presentation on Sensory Storytimes. (Here’s an ALSC blog post giving an overview of that presentation.)

    These are just a few of the things you can find on ALA Connect. You’ll want to browse around; there’s oodles of great information and opportunities for discussion there.

    0 Comments on Check out ALA Connect for handouts from the Annual Conference as of 1/1/1900
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    7. Want to hear about great new books for kids?

    Then the Notable Children’s Books Discussions are for you! These discussions are an opportunity to listen in as some of the best children’s books published this year are discussed by committed and passionate children’s librarians, children’s literature specialists, and professors & educators committed to quality children’s materials.

    This committee is charged with developing an annual list of books “of especially commendable quality, books that exhibit venturesome creativity, and books of fiction, information, poetry, folklore, and picture books that reflect and encourage children’s interests in exemplary ways.” It’s quite a task… and these eleven committee members are to be commended.

    Discussions continue today. If you are in New Orleans, I’m sure you would find it fascinating to stop in to the discussions; today they will be discussing informational picture books and nonfiction titles. If you are not able to attend in person, the discussion list is available here.

    0 Comments on Want to hear about great new books for kids? as of 1/1/1900
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    8. Best Show Ever!

    Last day of #ala11.  This has been a most eventful ALA for me.  I was asked by the NYPL to be on an armchair travel panel ay NYLA in November.  My old friend Ellen Myrick has asked me to become an Audie judge….how exciting!  And I am going to become a member of ALSC and blog, which is also very exciting.  Years ago I owned a Children’s bookstore called The Golden Key after the George MacDonald story.  I will love being part of this group.

    I had so much great feedback this year.  Two librarians offered to help me with the Falcon/hiking program.  Many stopped to talk about the travel titles and asked for catalogs. The food books were very popular.  Thank you to all!

    1 Comments on Best Show Ever!, last added: 6/27/2011
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    9. You can do puppet shows, too!

    Shoestring puppet shows! You can’t go wrong with the right book! On Monday morning, Michelle Brzozowski and Chien-Ju Lin of Ocean County Library, NJ, presented “You can do Puppet Shows, too!” at #ala11, and kept the crowd in stitches. With the help of Jon Scieszka and Leah Wilcox, these youth services librarians teach children about art and folktales through hilarious puppet shows – without spending a lot of money! Anyone Seen Art?

    1 Comments on You can do puppet shows, too!, last added: 6/28/2011
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    10. Swag bags for the soul

    We love our ARCs, pens, posters, buttons, and endless vendor bags, but it’s the intangible goodies that mean the most at #ALA11.

    Grand inspiration, practical ideas, and poignant moments – these are what I hope to take away from ALA, whether they come from a session, the exhibit floor, or a conversation with a colleague.

    To name just a very few of the nuggets I’ve tucked into my brain:

    1. Dr. Robinson’s thoughtful description of the range and common features of Autism Spectrum Disorders, and her valuable advice to build relationships with the parents and caregivers of kids with ASD, to get to know the kids, and to remember that non-verbal does not mean unintelligent and that kids with ASD do want human connection – it’s just a lot harder for them.
    2. I’ve got new energy, information, and motivation to go back and improve our early literacy services, our teen web, our e-media for kids and teens, and more.  Though maybe not all at once…
    3. The ALSC Awards Banquet offered many amazing moments – but man, when Erin Stead quoted from The Velveteen Rabbit… there wasn’t a dry eye in the ballroom.

    It’s not all about the intangibles, of course.  I’m bringing home a lot of Mardi Gras beads, too!


    2 Comments on Swag bags for the soul, last added: 6/27/2011
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    11. Listen up at #ALA11

    What do a medieval girl with a disability, a large, really, really gay teen musical star, and a Boovish alien all have in common?

    They’re characters voiced in audiobooks honored in the 2011 Odyssey Awards! I attended the Odyssey Award reception and heard fabulous speeches and readings by some of my very favorite audiobook narrators. Katherine Kellgren (pictured), Nick Podehl, Emma Bering, Emily Jane Card, Macleod (pronounced “McLoud”) Andrews, and Bahni Turpin gave wonderful speeches at this year’s reception. We also heard Katherine Kellgren, Nick Podehl, and Macleod Andrews read from their honored books.

    For an audiophile such as myself, it was certainly a thrill to meet some of my favorite narrators. And I’m kicking myself for not picking up each and every audiobook honored because they all sound fantastic. Believe me, I’ll be rectifying that oversight as soon as I get home!

    3 Comments on Listen up at #ALA11, last added: 6/29/2011
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    12. Final thoughts on ALA 2011

    The 8th annual Poetry Blast was a blast! Despite the late time and date (Monday evening @ 5:30pm), many librarians and fans turned out for the annual poetry blast. Joyce Sidman, Marilyn Singer, and Janet Wong were a few of the featured poets at the event – each poet reading for seven minutes. Highlights for me were Mike Artell’s reading of Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood (definitely added a local flavor to the evening! So happy I found the book in the French Quarter this morning!), and Nikki Grimes’ reading of “First Kiss,” complete with the news that she’ll have a new book out this fall, Planet Middle School, based on the poem. Kristen O’Connell George read from Emma Dilemma: Big Sister Poems . There is nothing like live poetry. All were phenomenal! Don’t miss the Poetry Blast next year, and make poetry a part of every day until then!

    This morning found me at the closing speech of the conference, Molly Shannon’s address in the 2nd floor Convention Center auditorium. She was alternately vulnerable, touching and hysterical (after all, she is Molly Shannon!) Her new picture book, Tilly the Trickster, is more autobiographical than you might think!

    And now it’s off the airport. It’s been a great week! I love New Orleans and New Orleans loves librarians! It’s a perfect match.

    1 Comments on Final thoughts on ALA 2011, last added: 6/28/2011
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    13. The pure pleasure of poetry

    A shining moment in my memory of #ALA11 was the pure pleasure of the ALSC Poetry Blast. Although I was tired and spent after a long weekend, listening to these poets renewed me with energy and enthusiasm for sharing poetry with children of all ages.

    As Joyce Sidman says, we all need time to ponder, “Time alone, without noise and distraction.  This is when ideas come–when things sort themselves out, when you see visions and solutions.  Not just for writing, but for life.” The ALSC Poetry Blast brought a bit of this pondering time to me on Monday afternoon. I was able to listen and be transported to place within myself that has room for just this sort of pondering.

    Stephanie Calmenson started the afternoon by sharing poems for the very young. She captures the voice and thoughts of youngsters perfectly, reading with enthusiasm and pure joy. Her poems for babies, toddlers and preschoolers are filled with irresistible energy, and hearing Stephanie read them woke me up and spread a smile across my face as she made me remember reading to my own children when they were very young.

    I have long admired Nikki Grimes, and so it was a special honor to hear her read a selection of her poems, especially ones inspired by her own parents. She read from Dark Sons, from A Dime a Dozen, from her upcoming Planet Middle School, and more. I am continually amazed how she is able to capture the voice of tweens and teens, whether it’s the young tween smiling secretly as her mother whispers mushy Puerto Rican on the subway, or the confusion of middle school as friendships seem to change on a daily basis.

    I made sure to go to this event because I had been receiving weekly updates on Facebook through the Fans of the ALSC Poetry Blast page – yes, social marketing in this new age really has an impact! Make sure to check into Sylvia Vardell’s wonderful blog Poetry for Children; over the next several weeks, she will be sharing videos and more from this wonderful event. Even from home, you too will be inspired to share the pure pleasure of poetry with children.

    2 Comments on The pure pleasure of poetry, last added: 7/1/2011
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    14. You know you’re a children’s librarian when …

    You know you’re a children’s librarian when …

    you attend the huge, annual American Library Association Conference featuring famous authors like Harlan Coben, C.S. Harris, Erica Spindler, Laura Lipman, and Wendy McClure;

    and you pass them all up because you can’t afford to miss

    Grace Lin, Rick Riordan, Clare Vanderpool, Erin Stead, Tom Angleberger, Jeff Kinney, Richard Peck, and all the other wonderful authors and illustrators who gathered this week in New Orleans. I wish I’d had the time to meet them all!

    1 Comments on You know you’re a children’s librarian when …, last added: 6/30/2011
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    15. ALSC Happy Hour Re-cap

    Friday night brought beautiful weather at #ala11, perfect for sitting outside on the patio at the ALSC Happy Hour. There was a great turn-out at the Checkered Parrot, where members shared stories and enjoyed a drink or two to kick off a terrific weekend. We have some pictures, but we aren’t going to post any here. Next year we hope you can join us in Anaheim.

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    16. Dessert Party! #ALA11

    What do chocolate, a naughty red cat, radishes, amazing librarians and flotsam & jetsam have in common? They were each well represented at the dessert party thrown by MacMillan Children’s Publishing Group last night.

    I spoke with the adorable Jack Gantos about his new book Dead End in Norvelt. It sounds brilliant and it probably is, considering the author. I don’t want to go off on a tangent here, but isn’t Hole In My Life one of the best books you’ve read ever? Seriously, like EVER?? (I also heard last night that Jack does a fantastic reading of his new book on audio – check it out!)

    I chatted with the gifted naturalist April Pulley Sayre about birds and other things we both adore. April has some wonderful new books out this year: If You’re Hoppy (which is getting all kinds of well-deserved attention) and Rah, Rah, Radishes! A Vegetable Chant. Radishes! is a lovely book, illustrated with photos taken by April at her local farmer’s market: support your local farmers, eat lots of veggies and read this freshly grown book!

    I also had the chance to meet Loree Griffin Burns, the talent behind the award winning Tracking Trash: Flotsam, Jetsam and the Science of Ocean Motion (which is now in it’s fifth printing) and last year’s fabulous The Hive Detectives:Chronicle of a Honeybee Catastrophe. Loree is delightful! She talked a little about the work she does at school visits; contact her if you are looking for a dynamic author to invite to your community.

    I also met some amazing librarians. Librarians who are out there working every day to connect these authors and their books with the kids who need to read them. The kids who may not be able to identify asparagus, who may not understand why honeybees are so important, or who may need to read about a kid who kinda sounds a little familiar. Thanks authors, editors, publishers and librarians for all of the wonderful things you do! (Shout out to the awesome Karen MacPherson woot-woot!)

    Oh, I forgot to mention the chocolate – it was delish.

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    17. Series build community

    Hiking to the far end of the convention center #ALA11 raised my first blister of the conference yesterday evening, but it was worth it.  3 writers and 1 editor of series books for kids and teens shared why they (and we!) heart series books.

    Booklist Forum – “Keep ‘Em Coming: Fiction Series Creators Talk Shop”
    Lauren Myracle, Dan Gutman, Jonathan Stroud, David Levithan
    Some tidbits:

    Lauren Myracle: 13 plus 1 – title came about because Barnes and Noble said that if it was called Fourteen, they’d have to put it in the YA section.  But they were FINE with “13 plus 1″!  Go figure.

    Did everyone know this but me? – Emily Jenkins (Toys Go Out) and E. Lockhart (Boyfriend List) are the same person!  No wonder I love all those books.

    Dan Gutman – hllarious on the topic of all the permutations of the Weird School series, which “are all exactly the same!” despite the different series titles.

    Jonathan Stroud doesn’t seem at all like Bartimaeus – at least as a speaker, he’s more an Arthur Dent type.  Unlike Myracle, who enjoys hearing what fans love about and want from her series, Stroud finds it a bit dangerous – sounds like he’d rather not be swayed by them.  About those footnotes – he says they’re a “cul-de-sac down which a reader can go, if he wishes, get a cheesy joke, then come back to the story.” 

    The first series Levithan edited (as a 19 year old!) was The Baby-Sitters Club – imagine him on the subway, poring over Baby-Sitters Club paperbacks with a highlighter.  During Scholastic’s “live chat” with all the Babysitters, David Levithan was the one answering the questions from all those pre-teen girl fans.  “What are you wearing, Mallory?” “Capris, of course!”  Animorphs was another series he worked on.  Believes that digital publishing will look like paperback series publishing did in the 80s and 90s.

    All panelists made the point that series build strong readers, build a tie between readers, characters, and the author – and most of all, they build a close-knit community of readers and fans.

    1 Comments on Series build community, last added: 6/25/2011
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    18. The Red Cape Event of the Season

    The poopiest place to be at #ALA11 tonight was the Super Diaper Baby 2 party. Here are some highlights:Tinkle tinis and hot dogs were served. Yes, tinkle tinis – get it?The super awesome and talented Dav Pilkey signed copies of Super Diaper Baby 2: The Invasion of the Potty Snatchers and let us take them home with us even though the book hasn’t been released yet! He also showed us a moving video about his inspiration for the book – it will be available on his website in a week or so, take a few minutes to watch it, it will squeeze a few tears out of you.There were plenty of red cape wearing librarians in attendance.And we all got to be the star on a book cover. Thanks Dav Pilkey for the pottyful new book and thanks Scholastic for the red cape event of the season!

    1 Comments on The Red Cape Event of the Season, last added: 6/25/2011
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    19. Learning about Sensory Storytimes at #ala11

    Many children with Autism Spectrum Disorders are visiting our libraries.  Many more families of kids with ASD want to feel welcome in our libraries.  Current statistics show that one in every 110 children is diagnosed with autism, and some studies suggest that the prevalence rate of autism is increasing 10-17 percent annually — statistics which clearly show that families needing this type of storytime are in our communities. How we can best work with these kids and their families was the focus of a session today called Sensory Storytime: Preschool Programming that Makes Sense for Kids with Autism.

    A sensory storytime  is different in many ways than a traditional storytime for 3 to 5 year olds. While it does incorporate some of the books, songs, and movement activities typically found in a storytime, it can also incorporate sensory activities such as balance beam or bean bag activities. The presenters shared many hints such as how to create a schedule the kids could see to know what was going to happen next, the types of books that work well with this group of kids, the importance of eliminating extra chairs, posters and distractions from the room, the value of a time to play (for the kids) and network (for the parents) after the storytime, and that it was best if no food was offered and perfume/hairspray and other scents were avoided. It also seems to work well if offered on a Saturday morning with no age limit defined.

    The blurb for Sensory Storytime: Preschool Programming that Makes Sense for Kids with Autism stated “Expect to be inspired, educated, and empowered to develop or modify your own storytime programs to serve the kids with autism in your community.” This comment was absolutely on target… I came away feeling that not only should our library be offering a Sensory Storytime, but that we were quite capable of doing it and doing it well. Thank you presenters Ellen Fader, Barbara Klipper, Allison LeBouef, and Tricia Bohanon Twarogowski.

    These presenters will be sharing their information soon on ALA Connect; I will make sure to post when that happens.

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    20. Sunday Synchronicity

    Yesterday at #ala11, I met with the NYPL and we discussed depth of collections.  The same sentiment, that libraries need a range of books to offer, was echoed the previous night at the ALSC coctail party.  For a publisher like Globe Pequot with our long tail, this is important knowledge when we sell to library wholesale accounts.  

    Cat Urbigkit, author,  just stopped by.  She will post to this blog with pictures in a couple of days.  We had an “it’s a small world” moment when she told me that Globe Pequot is publishing her friend’s book on eagles. Amazing!

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    21. #BFYA at #ALA11

    “It rattles you as a reader.”

    “Y’know, guys change everything.”

    “How lucky we are, we’re allowed to love.”

    Those are quotes from the teens that spoke at the Best Fiction for Young Adults teen input session. This was one of my favorite sessions at Midwinter, so I made SURE to attend it again this time around. Teens speak so eloquently about the books they loved and hated.

    Four pages of nominated books were open for discussion and the committee went through page by page, inviting teens to come up to the front and speak about any of the books they wanted. There was a clear call for more contemporary realistic reads and it seemed like these teens were getting frustrated with series books. Most interesting to me were the books that the teens didn’t talk about, including What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen, The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson, and Cryer’s Cross by Lisa McMann. They went through 4 pages of nominations in just over an hour, so there were lots of nominated books unspoken. Maybe the teens didn’t have a chance to read those yet or maybe they just didn’t have anything strong to say about them!

    Check out the 2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults nominated books (the list is updated monthly and will be updated again at the beginning of August).

    And several people live-tweeted the teen input session today, so check out the hashtag #bfya to see our thoughts!

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    22. Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?

    Walking through the massive Exhibit Halls at #ala11 can be a treasure hunt. Some people are searching for ARCs to bring home, some are searching for authors to sign books, some are searching for particular vendors to talk with, some are just looking for what’s new and exciting in the profession. I do all of these things, but I’m always keeping my eye open for buttons. I love the variety and the styles of this type of advertising. I am particularly drawn to the ones that make you go “hmmmm” such as these buttons I found at the Milliken booth. Aren’t they fun?

    Buttons that ask questions or start conversations are always great, too!

    Or shaped buttons like this one from Playaway.

    One of the most unique buttons I saw at this conference was for Text a Librarian which had a working QR Code — how great is that?

    And how could I not share at least one book-promotion button?

    What buttons have you found?


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    23. @ your library #ALA11

    ALA has a new promotion that you need to know about: Connect With Your Kids @ your library. I spoke with Megan Humphrey, Manager of Campaign for America’s Libraries about it this afternoon. She provided me with gorgeous bookmarks and pamphlets to hand out to parents in my community. All of the information that you need to promote this campaign is downloadable from the website. The idea behind the promotion: let parents know that the library is the perfect place to bring their kids. How awesome is that? Check out the website and provide a link to it from your library’s page. The content is going to continue to grow, so check back often.

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    24. Have you ever met one of your heroes?

    One of the things I will always remember about this ALA conference is that it was the time I met Tomie dePaola, this year’s recipient of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Lifetime Achievement Award for his “substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.”

    He, of course, was kind, funny, gracious and full of stories. I was starstruck, tongue-tied, and filled with awe.

    Want to know more about Tomie dePaola? Check out his website.

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    25. Penguin Young Readers Cocktail Party

    Saturday night was a busy night at #ala11. At the third event I attended I met Tomie DePaola, Sarah Dessen, Ingrid Law, Paul Volponi, Brenna Yovanoff, Franny Billingsley and Richard Peck. And I picked up some new books that you might want to know about:

    • The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler (November 2011) This is the one I am reading first. It is about a couple of teens in 1996 who find themselves on Facebook 15 years in the future – interesting, huh?
    • Secrets of the Sea by Richard Peck (October 2011) Includes: action, adventure and stow-away mice. All of the good stuff.
    • The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson (October 2011) Historical fiction set in London of 1888 – the time of Jack the Ripper – it is giving me chills already.
    • The Space Between by Brenna Yovanoff (November 2011) Set in a city in Hell – talk about fascinating.
    • Crossing Lines by Paul Volponi (available now) Alan (the new kid in school who wears lipstick and would like to be called Alana)  vs. the football team – I just read the first page and I can’t wait to get to the rest of it.
    • What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen (available now) A teenage girl on a quest to find herself after surviving family troubles and several moves. This one will  be hard to put down.
    • Chime by Franny Billingsley (available now) SIX stars!! What can I say? I think we all need to read it. Now.
    • Let the Whole Earth Sing Praise by Tomie DePaola (available now) Check out the website for a taste of the beauty.

    I wish that I had time to read all of these books right now and review them for you, but honestly it seems like they are all going to be wonderful. I am kind of excited about my flight tomorrow – lots of time to read.

    I took too many photos to share here, but I have to show you Richard Peck’s shoes. Not only is he an outstanding author and charming person, but he also has an impeccable sense of style:

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