Saturday, September 24, 2016

YSS Powerhouse Presents...All in the Family

YSS Powerhouse Presents ...All in the Family, a free hour-long webinar will be presented Tuesday October 12. from 1:00-2:00pm, hosted by our friends at OWLS. Registration is now open!

Looking for ways to create opportunities for more family involvement in your youth programs? This webinar explores creative programs, initiatives, outreach and collaborations perfect for the whole family. Our panelists will share ideas, experiences, tips, and details that really work!  With Karen Wendt (Monona) , Ann Hardginski (Kimberly-Little Chute) and Heide Piehler (Shorewood)

This is another in a continuing series of youth centered webinars sponsored and coordinated by YSS. Our section has over 300 members who are experts on all things youth. So each webinar is presented by YSS members (just like you) who have a passion for youth services and a yen to share successes.

If you missed the previous webinars, you can still stop at the YSS Resource page and access all the previous webinars:
Storyime 101: Rethinking the Basics (Brooke Newberry)
Teen Services Better Than OK (Terry Ehle, Emily Heideman, Becky Arenivar)
Collection Connections (Sharon Grover, Emily Passey, Shelley Collins-Fuerbringer)
Outreach and Community Partnerships (Sarah Cournoyer, Monica LaVold, Cole Zrostlik, Georgia Jones)
Transforming Collections (Kelsey Johnson-Kaiser, Katherine Elchert)
Transitions and Transformations (Dawn Wacek, Sue Abrahamson, Sharon Grover)

Plus mark your calendars for Wednesday Nov 16 1:00-2:00 pm when SCLS hosts our final YSS Powerhouse webinar of the year: Beyond Storytime with  Ann Cooksey & Kristi Helmkamp (Appleton), Katie Kiekhaefer (Whitefish Bay), and Kymberley Pelky (Oneida). Read more about it and find the registration link here.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Kirkus Prize Shortlist

Dorling Kindersley/Getty Images/Dorling Kindersley RF
The Kirkus Prize Shortlist has been announced!  For those not in the know, the Kirkus Prize works as follows (from the Kirkus website):
Books reviewed by Kirkus Reviews that earned the Kirkus Star and that have original publication dates between Nov. 1, 2015, and Oct. 31, 2016, are automatically nominated for the 2016 Kirkus Prize. Children’s and teen books are frequently dependent on finished art and design to have their full effect. In order to ensure that judges have access to finished copies of all titles under consideration, the eligibility dates for the 2016 Kirkus Prize for Young Readers’ Literature are Oct. 1, 2015, through Sep. 30, 2016. Both traditionally published and self-published books reviewed by Kirkus that earn the Star are eligible. In the Young Readers’ Literature category, the finalists will include two picture books, two middle-grade books and two teen books.
So, here is the 2016 Young Readers' Literature Shortlist:

  • Thunder Boy Jr. (Sherman Alexie & Yuyi Morales) 
  • Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life (Ashley Bryan)
  •  We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement that Defied Adolf Hitler (Russell Freedman) 
  • As Brave as You (Jason Reynolds)
  •  The Reader (Traci Chee) 
  • Burn Baby Burn (Meg Medina) 
For more information about the Kirkus Prize or to read reviews of the Shortlist books, check out the Kirkus website, HERE.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Home for Peculiar Books

The movies release date for Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is Friday, September 30th. If you are not able to have a party, here are some ideas to wipe something together in your teen area.

Create a book display. Book Riot's Beyond the Bestsellers series features Miss Peregrine read-alikes.

Teen Librarian Toolbox has lots of ideas for a party but a couple would work as passive activities. Provide an old photo or photos and challenge the teens to write a story with them. Have the teens create a movie poster. If the teens allow, put their creations on display.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Resources for Growing a Reader from Frisco Public Library's Early Literacy Day

If you haven't seen the Grow a Reader post on the ALSC blog about early literacy training days, it is interesting. Even better is this wealth of materials linked to at the bottom of the post which includes the handouts from the Early Literacy Day from the Frisco Public Library:

There are some scalable ideas to implement in a small library or a large one about play, STEM-based learning for young children, enhancing talk with intentional activities, and storytime activities to enhance school readiness.

The librarians at Frisco Public Library have also put together a set of three online early literacy classes geared towards parents and caregivers of Babies (Birth to 17 months), Toddlers and 2s (18 months to 2 years), and 3-5s (3 to 5 years). The classes can be taken by anyone, do not require a library card, and may count towards continuing education credit for childcare providers. Find those courses and more information HERE.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Bill Konigsburg - YSS Luncheon Speaker!

As if you needed another reason to attend WLA in October,  2016 Stonewall Book Award-winner YA author Bill Konigsberg is our Wednesday October 26 YSS Luncheon speaker this year!  Not only does he seem to be a funny, smart and passionate about reaching out to LGBTQ youth ( ), but his books are legit ( ).

YSS has also planned a book discussion at the conference on Thursday Oct 27 from 7:30-8:15pm(followed by our YSS social!). SO reserve and read these books today!!
Talk About It!
Join us for a discussion of two books, The Porcupine of Truth and Openly Straight, by Bill Konigsburg, Wednesday's YSS luncheon speaker, at the Canal Street Café (1611 W Canal Street).  Feel free to join us having read one or both books, or if you just heard Bill’s talk and want to discuss what he had to say!  Sponsored by YSS and the CCBC. 

AND, check back here in October when we debut a sure-to-be-amazing exclusive YSS interview with Bill!

Curious about Bill?  Take a look here:

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Passive Program Power

Former YSS member and board member Kelsey Johnson-Kaiser is our special guest blogger today. Late of La Crosse Public Library, she began her new job as Youth Services Manager at the George Latimer Central Library in St. Paul, Minnesota. We're glad to welcome her back (if only in print!

Passive programs are a plus in any library, and in St. Paul we see lots of young friends that are visiting for the first time, as well as regulars. Having passive programs available for them to engage with our space has been a fantastic way to welcome newcomers and keep regulars coming back. Here are two ongoing passive programs that have worked great for us:
Scavenger Hunt: Each month we put out a new scavenger hunt. Eight pictures are hidden around the children’s room. At the children’s desk we have small pencils and checklists to help kids keep track of what they’ve found and what’s left. Once kids find all the pictures, they can come back to the desk for a sticker. We print our own stickers on peel-off label sheets, always using couple of the pictures from the hunt. We’ve gone through tons of themes, and this has been a great way to quickly jump on popular subjects. When Pokémon Go exploded, it was fast and easy to create Pokémon scavenger hunt, and people absolutely loved it.

Craft Cart: This is also a monthly activity, and very simple! All materials are included in the cart, so it’s a completely librarian-free activity. Instructions and an example go up on the whiteboard, and kids are free to create!

Everyone in the department takes responsibility for a few months out of the year, but these programs could easily be replicated in a library with fewer staff. Best of all, it gives kids and caregivers more opportunities to interact and have fun at the library.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Save your Spot in the Stellar Services to School-Age Kids WLA Preconference

Hurry—the number of spots in this amazing preconference are limited! Register now.

The Youth Services Section of WLA and the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction invite you to join library staff serving youth for an invigorating preconference. This small and large group event will offer scalable ideas related to programming, drop-in activities, technology, and outreach for children in grades 2-5. TED-style talks by Wisconsin library staff will address tried-and-true and shiny-and-new efforts for this age group. A passive programming gallery of ideas awaits you during the robust snack break. Best of all, network with library peers who are equally interested in reaching kids who are beyond early literacy but not yet a tween. Past participants in YSS + DPI preconferences have said that it’s the best part of WLA! Sign up soon—the preconference is filling up quickly.

Stellar Services to School-Age Kids Preconference 
1:00 P.M. - 5:00 P.M. on Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Potawatomi Hotel & Casino – Clarity Room
Registration Fee: $25 WLA members/$50 non-members
Limited to 50 people

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Happy Diaper Bag

Love this idea from the Keeping Up with the Kids: IFLS Blog!

From Brandon on Flickr (creative commons)

I was up in Rice Lake the other day.  When I went into the bathroom, I was pleased to see a friendly sign saying that there is a Happy Diaper Bag at the children's desk.  For caregivers who find that their child has blown through a diaper and they forgot to reload the bag.  For people who were just going to be in the library for a MINUTE so they left their diaper bag in the car and then...well...then...  For kids who are potty trained except when they get really, really engrossed in stories or play.

Even though my kids are teenagers (and beyond!) and I am not even close to needing the happy diaper bag anymore, this sign made me feel calmer.  It was so friendly, and made me remember how anxious it can make you to be the caregiver of a young child.  Taking away this element of stress is such a terrific idea!  And makes it seem like a normal, not-so-shameful occurrence, if the library is prepared to help everyone with it.

When I talked to Janine at the children's desk about it, she says they pretty much stock the Happy Diaper Bag with donations--parents bring in the left-over diapers at the end of the pack when their kid graduates to the next size, or bring in a few outgrown pairs of pants.  An easy way to make the library more welcoming (and better smelling!).

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Celebrate Authors Storytime Series: Jan Thomas

At my library, we have a theme for storytime.  We also noticed that we have better attendance at the monthly evening storytimes when we do something different than the daytime ones.  One month might be a puppet show with our big puppet stage.  Then another month the high school drama club will do a reader's theater skit for us.

This fall we are focusing on authors.  September focuses on one of my new favorites - Jan Thomas.  We are going to do a puppet show for Rhyming Dust BunniesNatasha the Artsy Librarian has a great make your own dust bunnies if you not able to find the dusters from the Dollar Store.

Jan Thomas' website if filled with goodies.  We do a simple craft and sometimes an activity after the storytime.  This month we are doing both: rhyming activity with the dust bunnies and make your own fat cat puppets.  The rhyming activity is also great  for in-library use.  We printed off words that rhyme and the kids have to match them.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Banned Books Week for Kids and Teens

Banned Books Week is celebrated this year from September 25 to October 1, but recognition of intellectual freedom and the freedom to read and to listen is a year-round commitment.

For insights on reading and listening to challenged books, read this School Library Journal article Hear No Evil co-written by YSS member Sharon Grover, co-author of Listening to Learn: Audiobooks Supporting Literacy. You can also view ALA's lists of Frequently Challenged Young Adult Books and Frequently Challenged Children's Books compiled by Patricia Peters in August 2016, as well as Frequently Challenged Books with Diverse Content.

Be sure to attend this topical session at this year's WLA conference on Thursday, October 27 from 2:45 to 3:30pm:

Meeting the Challenge: Collection Development of Youth Materials
Track: Building Collections/Back to the Book

Megan Schliesman, Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC), UW-Madison; Tessa Michaelson Schmidt, Department of Public Instruction, Madison

Should you buy a buzzed-about book if reviews point out serious shortcomings? How do you handle an award-winner that rubs you the wrong way? Are you uncertain after reading blog posts calling out books for racial insensitivity? Do worries about challenges make you hesitate with some titles or topics? This safe and instructive conversation will also explore the essential role intellectual freedom plays in the work you do every day.  Library newbies and veterans welcome.