Thursday, January 22, 2015

Summer Library Program Webinar Opportunities

Via the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.

The CSLP Exclusive Vendor, Upstart is offering a great opportunity for public libraries to learn more about the 2015 Every Hero Has a Story program.

Upstart is excited to offer you the opportunity to spend an hour with two CSLP experts (and Wisconsin residents!), Patti Sinclair and Amanda Moss Struckmeyer. As editors of the CSLP manuals, their insightful tips will help build excitement for the 2015 program and provide a great start as you begin your planning.

There will be two webinars, one for the Early Literacy and Children's program on January 28, 2015 and one for the Teen program on February 25, 2015. Register today!

 Registration information can be found at:

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

YSS Powerhouse Presents...

This year, YSS launched YSS Powerhouse Presents, a webinar series that allows YSS members to reach out and provide some terrific ideas and content to people across the state, some of whom find it harder to get away for conferences and workshops.

Our first session, Storytime 101:  Rethinking the Basics,  was held last week, hosted by the South Central Library System and presented by LaCrosse Public Library's Brook Newberry.  If you didn't have a chance to see it live, be sure to check out the slides and  recording.

Watch in the next several months for information about sessions on Teen Programs, School Age Programs, Building Partnerships and Collaboration, and Collection Connections, each with a panel of smart YSS members and hosted by various systems.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Upcoming webinar: "Creating Baby Spaces in Public Libraries"

Via Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction:

Take note of the webinar below offered by Infopeople: 

“Creating Baby Spaces in Public Libraries: Designing for Success.”

You will need a free Infopeople account to register for the webinar.

For more information and to participate in the January 27,2015 webinar, go to:

Infopeople webinars are free of charge, you can pre-register by clicking on the Register Now button visible only if you are signed in. If registering with less than 30 MINUTES from the start of the webinar you can join directly from the thank you page by clicking the Join Now button. If you pre-registered you will receive an email with login link and a reminder email the day before the event.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

In the "Frozen" Zone

Eager Free Public Library in Evansville hosted a Frozen Family Party on January 17th that drew ~140 to our wee library (very big for a family event for us)! I thought I'd share what we did during the program, which was both a lot of work and a total blast.

The party was only an hour and a half long, with a kickoff that included a picture book (An Amazing Snowman by Barbara Jean Hicks) and a singalong guessed it..."Let It Go" from the Frozen soundtrack. After we kicked off, there were five activities for kids and their families to choose from:

Rolling dice to see what they should add to their snowman! 
Glittery, soft snow dough was a big hit.

An outdoor activity allowed us to spread out the action. 8 spray bottles of paint had to be refilled once for 1.5 hours.
We served "hot chocolate floats", a scoop of vanilla ice cream + hot chocolate + marshmallows that we sprinkled with baking luster dust. 

We had the movie playing in the background, projected onto the wall, but the sound was off so that kids could watch the action without getting distracted from the other activities. 

Decoration-wise, the only thing that we added to our program room besides tablecloths and station signs were ~25 of these lovely 3D snowflakes that hung from the ceiling. They totally packed a punch and changed the feel of the whole room, making it a really special occasion.

We had a crew of high school volunteers who helped manage the stations, while parents really helped with traffic flow, too, leaving library staff able to walk around, talk with people, and help out/get more supplies where needed. Due to warmer than expected weather, a lot of coolers became necessary to transport the ice boats and to keep the ice cream cold, but overall it was a fun event and went over very well with our library families, particularly in a gray time of year when we all need a little fun! 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Teen Services Underground site goes live!

Exciting news for those in YSS that work with tweens, teens, and young adults, or are interested in trends in services to these age groups!

A sister site to Storytime Underground that focuses on services to older kids is newly live online and may be found at: Teen Services Underground. On the website you can find lots of ideas for ways to work with and support teens at your library, from program ideas to readers' advisory tips and suggestions! Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

ALSC Announces: Building STEAM with Día Book Lists

News from the Association of Library Services to Children, announced in a press release last week:
The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association, has released new Building STEAM with Día book lists for children from birth to 8th grade. Intended to accompany El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Día) programming, the four book lists are comprised of multicultural titles that showcase STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) topics.
The four Building STEAM with Día book lists are available for children from birth to Pre-K, kindergarten to 2nd grade, 3rd to 5th grade and 6th to 8th grade. PDFs of the reading lists are available online in full color and are free to download, copy and distribute. Book lists are available online at:

Monday, January 5, 2015

Read On Wisconsin Titles for January

This post brought to you by Emily Townsend of Cooperative Children's Book Center.

This month’s Read On Wisconsin titles are great discussion books! Discussion questions are available at: Also, find resources for these books at

Other resources available at Read On Wisconsin Pinterest including student made book trailer for Open Mic and CCBC-net Q&A with Gene Luen Yang about Boxers and Saints.

Titles for Read On Wisconsin January 2015 below:
Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers Books:
Big Snow by Jonathan Bean. Farrar Straus Giroux, 2013.
Little You by Richard Van Camp. Illustrated by Julie Flett. Orca, 2013.

Primary (K-2) Books:
Nora’s Chicks by Patricia MacLachlan. Illustrated by Kathryn Brown. Candlewick Press, 2013.
This Is the Rope: A Story from the Great Migrationby Jacqueline Woodson. Illustrated by James Ransome. Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin, 2013.

Intermediate (Grades 3-5) Books:
The No. 1 Car Spotter and the Firebird by Atinuke. Illustrated by Warwick Johnson Cadwell. U.S. edition: Kane Miller, 2012.
Tua and the Elephant by R.P. Harris. Illustrated by Taeeun Yoo. Chronicle Books, 2012.

Middle School Books:
Pinned by Sharon G. Flake. Scholastic Press, 2012.

High School Books:
Boxers (Boxers and Saints) by Gene Luen Yang. First Second, 2013.
Saints (Boxers and Saints) by Gene Luen Yang. First Second, 2013.
Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices by Mitali Perkins. Candlewick Press, 2013.

This month’s Read On Wisconsin titles are great discussion books! Discussion questions are available at: Also, find resources for these books
Other resources available at Read On Wisconsin Pinterest including student made book trailer for Open Mic and CCBC-net Q&A with Gene Luen Yang about Boxers and Saints.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Hello / Goodbye Routines

Welcome to 2015!! Woo-hoo! As we say hello to a new year and goodbye to an old year, it only seems appropriate to kick off our January with a collection of Hello / Goodbye library routines!

One of the topics presented at the Guerrilla Story Time presentation at WLA's annual conference this fall was favorite hello / goodbye songs, rhymes, and activities, particularly for story times and other early literacy programs.

Hello / goodbyes popped up again recently in the Storytime Underground Facebook group (which I highly recommend joining if you aren't a member already!) and I thought it'd be worth re-posting a couple of hello / goodbye song roundups here!

From the MCLS Kids Wiki: Opening and Closing Rituals
From Storytime Secrets: Hello and Goodbye Songs

We open our early literacy times with what we call the "drumbeat name song":

This is my name drum 
My name is Lau / ra (hit the drum with each syllable of your name to demonstrate)
What's your name?

Each child has the opportunity to hit the drum and say their name, or their grown-up can, if the child is too young or feeling shy that day! 

We got our Good-bye Song from the good folks at Hedberg Public Library's 2-3's story time routine:

Goodbye my friends, goodbye
Goodbye my friends, goodbye
Goodbye my friends,
Goodbye my friends,
Goodbye my friends, goodbye

How do you start and end your early literacy programs?

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Stop Brain Freeze...

The Wild Wisconsin Winter Web Conference is a state-wide virtual conference developed by the Nicolet Federated Library System and supported by 14 other library systems in Wisconsin.

Five, 60-minute web presentations focusing on public libraries will be given each day from speakers all over the country. Attend what you want - one...four...or all 10.

Because of the collaboration, all sessions are available without cost.  

10 Programs.  2 Days.  Loads of Wild Fun.   #wwwc15

Youth Focused Program
10:30 am: Creating Welcoming and Accessible Libraries for Children with Special Needs
Renee Grassi, Youth Department Director Glen Ellyn Public Library, Glen Ellyn, Illinois
Whether large or small, rural or urban, all library communities serve children with special needs.  Developing an awareness and sensitivity to children with special needs is crucial to providing top-notch inclusive service to families in our communities.  Participants will learn how to perform a community needs assessment in their library communities, forge new partnerships with outside organizations, and be inspired by new and innovative programming ideas. This program will also provide positive strategies for disability etiquette, as well as present different approaches to reevaluating existing youth programs for an inclusive audience.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

YSS Powerhouse Presents!

YSS has been looking for ways to help our members with great resources and content, whether they are able to attend conferences or not.  Here's our latest effort:  a series of webinars, presented by YSS members about topics of interest and importance to our membership!  

YSS member Brooke Newberry of the LaCrosse Public Library (and the Reading with Red blog), in cooperation with the South Central Library System, will kick off the YSS Powerhouse Presents series, which will be archived and available on the YSS website.

Storytime 101:  Rethinking the Basics

Thursday, January 15, 10:00 am

Are you new to storytime? In a storytime rut? Looking for something new? YSS member Brooke Newberry  will help us look at the foundation of storytime and discuss best practices, tips, and tricks to keep children engaged with you during storytimes.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.