Thursday, August 22, 2019

Autism Welcome Here Grant Opportunity

For the fifth year, this grant will award a total of $5,000.00, with all of the funds either going to one proposal or the amount divided among several applicants, depending on the applications received.  All types of libraries, either in the United States or Canada, are encouraged to apply, and proposals will be eligible that fund projects and/or services directed at any age group.  Applicants may propose to initiate a new, creative program or service, bring an established, successful program or service to their library for the first time, or enhance a program or service that they currently offer.  All proposed projects must benefit people with autism or their families, directly or indirectly.  Funds may be used to hire a trainer to present a workshop, buy program materials, pay for staff coverage, etc., so long as these expenses further the library’s ability to serve people with autism through the proposed initiative.


Applications will be accepted starting September 1, 2019.
The application deadline is December 1, 2019.
The winning applicant(s) will be notified by March 1, 2020.
The grant-funding period is from April 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021.

1.       The project is clearly described and well thought out.
2.       The potential impact is significant.
3.       There is institutional support for the program or service.
4.       People with autism, family members or other community stakeholders are involved in the development and/or implementation of the project.
5.       The program is one that would be replicable in other communities.
6.       The program or service is based on an understanding of the needs of people with autism and/or best practices in working with this population.
7.       There is a plan for the continuation of the service or program after the grant year.
8.       The project would not be possible without outside funding.

GRANT FORMS: The following 2020-2021 grant forms can be downloaded at

1. The Grant Application - All questions must be answered, unless they are marked "optional”
2. The Grant Sample Budget Sheet –All budget items must also be included in the grant narrative
3. The Grant Report Guidelines

Applications, budget sheets, institutional letters of support and other supporting documentation
 must be submitted as email attachments to:

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

It's Time For the Annual End-of-Summer Survey!

Calling all Wisconsin Public Library Staff who offered a Summer Reading Program/Summer Library Program in 2019!  We need you...yes, fill out an end-of-summer survey and help advocate for youth services. 

The following email was sent earlier today by Tessa Michaelson Schmidt:

This is a friendly reminder to complete the end-of-summer survey. The audience for the survey is public library staff who played an active role in administering or running 2019 summer library programming regardless if you used the “Universe of Stories” theme. Please complete the survey between now and September 27, 2019.  Multiple library staff from the same library should complete the sections of the survey most relevant to their work; e.g. children, teen, or adult programs.

Beginning in 2019, the Public Library Development (PLD) Team will conduct an annual end-of-the-summer survey about the summer library program in concert with the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP).  PLD coordinates a summer reading program on behalf of Wisconsin's public libraries through membership to the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP) and free access to the all-ages manual. Through the state-sponsored membership to CSLP, Wisconsin libraries are able to purchase high-quality program materials at a low cost. Your input on this survey is vital to the future of this program.

If you've already taken the time to fill out the survey, thanks so much!  If you haven't, there's still plenty of time!  Click HERE to get started and help validate the importance of support and available resources for all of Wisconsin's library staff serving youth and the communities they serve.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Looking for a way to get involved with YSS at the WLA conference?


Image result for help gifLooking for a way to get involve with YSS at the WLA conference?

We have two volunteer opportunities for members:

YSS Room Monitor
Time: Throughout WLA
Check-in with speakers, sit through the presentation, count how many people attend the session, report attendance to the WLA registration table and if need be, alert speakers if they are reaching their time limit.  

YSS Booth
Time: Throughout WLA
Sit at the YSS booth, greet those who stop by, answer questions, encourage membership and volunteering opportunities and meet great people! The YSS booth is located in the exhibit hall next to the CCBC.

If you are attending WLA, are a YSS member AND would like to help out please sign up for a spot!

Sign Up Sheet    

Questions? Email Claire Parrish at


Monday, August 19, 2019

Center for Childhood Discovery Resources

Thanks to the ever amazing Jbrary blog (you do have them on your RSS feed don't you?),  a recent post from them highlights some great free downloadable resources from the Center for Childhood Creativity, perfect for all youth library staff to use in serving their birth-age 8 clientele.  The Center is the research arm of the Bay Area Discovery Museum and they want to help adults working with kids by linking research with the practical aspects of work with kids.

To read about their work which includes a School Readiness Toolkit, A Promising Practices for Library Staff and more, stop here

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Teen-Friendly Horror Movies

I don't know about you, but I am already thinking about pumpkins and crisp leaves, apple picking and HALLOWEEN.  That's right people, it might be sweltering outside, but in my little library office, I am all about the orange and black.  Also, I love movie showings at the library.  So, imagine my joy at discovering that Brooke Windsor over at the YALSA Hub has compiled a list of recommended horror movies that teens will love (and parents won't hate).  Including A Quiet Place and Lights Out, Windsor also includes some "horror-lite" selections like Gremlins, for younger teen audiences.  Check out the whole list HERE.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Volunteers Needed for the 2019 WLA Conference!

you know you otter.jpg
This year’s WLA conference, Celebrating Every Story, promises to be an amazing opportunity for learning and sharing. It also offers an opportunity to be of service to your professional community. 
Volunteering at the conference is a fantastic way to network and meet new people, catch up with old friends as you see them, and get in touch with the workings of the conference. Many volunteers are needed in several areas. An hour or two of your time can make a significant difference!

We are in need of registration table volunteers, session room monitors, author signing tables and resume reviewers.

Available shifts can be found on the following Google spreadsheet.  Just look for the tabs at the bottom of the page to sign up in each area.

Don't miss out on the fun. Thank you for your support of WLA and all you do for libraries. See you in the Dells!

For questions or more information on volunteering, please contact the WLA Registration Chair.

Beth Kucera- WLA Registration Chair

Monday, August 12, 2019

Back to School Collaboration

In the spirit of work at the national level through ALA’s State Ecosystem Initiative and the new Public Library & School Library Collaboration Toolkit done through collaborative efforts of AASL, YALSA, and ALSC, WEMTA, WLA, and DPI are working together to support and foster communications and collaborations among Wisconsin public and school librarians in order to better support the communities we serve. Each quarter we will share a resource, strategy, or example with you that could be used as a talking point in your community. Please use these ideas to initiate or continue to build relationships with public and school librarians.

When thinking beyond Summer Reading Program promotion, how often are we public librarians in the schools? How often are we school librarians present in the public library? Finding simple strategies to engage throughout the year can foster better relationships between school and public libraries that benefit the entire community. What’s our first step? Know our contact at the school/library so that you have a go-to person for communication and collaboration!

Ways to break the ice:
  • Set up a breakfast meeting to chat, share information and learn about each other
  • Stop by and visit the school library or public library and chat with colleagues; get to know their space
  • Ask how you can help your colleague
  • Invite a school or public library colleague along for a road trip to the CCBC to look at books or attend a book sale

Ways to engage: 
  • Public and school collaborative library presentations at school faculty meetings and/or public library staff meetings throughout the year (Key: Keep it short!)
  • Sharing important dates in advance (testing; big programs for either organization; closed dates; etc)
  • Co-teach a library resources class during a professional development day 

Extending engagement:
  • Offer to do a program for your public library and promote it with the kids at your school
  • Offer to lead a story time/author study at the school and/or public library
  • Offer to come to classes during Poetry month or at another time to do mini-popup booktalks
  • Consider developing a mutual event (literacy night; reading carnival; book club; cooperative winter reading program) and plan it together

The key is to open the conversation, listen, and see where opportunities lie to strengthen service to families in our communities. Anytime is a great time to start collaborating with our peers in the public or school library!

This message brought to you through the collaboration of Wisconsin Educational Media & Technology Association (WEMTA), Wisconsin Library Association (WLA), and DPI School and Public Libraries. If you are interested in working on future tidbits or have other suggestions for collaborations, please contact Marge Loch-Wouters (WLA) or Micki Uppena (WEMTA) .

Friday, August 9, 2019

Registration for WLA 2019 in Wisconsin Dells is NOW OPEN!

That's right, you read that correctly!  

Registration for WLA 2019 in Wisconsin Dells is NOW OPEN! 

Connect, learn, tour circus world... Plan your conference stay now!

Register for the conference using the online form or printable form. Make your plans early, early bird special rates end September 16th.

Find information on sessions, events, and after hours activities on the WLA Conference webpage.

Read on for details on how to win a hotel room upgrade when you reserve a room at the Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells...

Registration highlights:

Request to be matched with a Conference Connector or  volunteer to be a Conference Connector.

Register for the free preconference: “So You Want To  Talk About Race” with Ijeoma Oluo. Space is limited!

Browse the full list of programs and featured speakers to plan your conference stay.  Pssst! The WLA Conference Committee is developing an app to make your conference experience a breeze. Stay tuned…

Join us for fun local events!, including
Tour of the Circus World's Robert L. Parkinson Library and Research Center
Tour of the Devil's Lake Lavender Farm and Lunch
Upper Dells Boat Tour 

Hotel Room Upgrade Drawing
Register before the early bird deadline of September 16 AND book your room at the Kalahari Resort and you are AUTOMATICALLY entered into a drawing to receive a FREE ROOM UPGRADE for the entirety of your stay on the conference dates! Don't wait, get your name in the hat now!

Book your hotel room: 
Register for the Conference & activities: 

~Your WLA Conference Committee

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Relight Your Programming Fire

We can all hit a programming wall.  Should you do another round of a well-loved, but much run program?  Should you build a whole new program from scratch?  Where else can you gain inspiration to break out of a programming rut?  not to fear, Chelsea Price, Director of the Meservey Public Library in Iowa is here to light your program fire again!  Over at the Programming Librarian blog, Price lists webinars, blogs, websites and more that inspire her and help her reignite her passion for programming.  Check out her list of ideas and inspirations HERE.

Monday, August 5, 2019

And Now a Word from Your YSS Board!

 A recent news email from the Youth Services Section (YSS) board included these delightful tips!  

A Huge List of Self-Care Tips from your YSS Board in no particular order...
  1. Make a conscious choice to recognize the positive and good in other people, your job, and yourself. Focus on the good, and when you talk, share the good stories. 
  2. Remember that we are humans too, and we should not let guilt stop us from taking time off during the summer.
  3. Schedule walks after work with close friends.
  4. Get out from the circulation desk and take a walk outside. During one particularly stressful summer running the SRP program, I began taking walks over my lunch break every day. I immediately felt a difference. Spending time looking at nature, and getting up and moving, helped my attitude. 
  5. Take a day off here and there throughout the summer. Giving myself a day or 1/2 day to just do fun summer things has really helped my outlook and gave me back a positive perspective.
  6. Take care of yourself, both mentally and physically.  Go for a walk. Listen to a favorite playlist. Set aside a few moments during the day to just breathe or do something just for you that makes you smile.  And, above all, BE KIND TO YOURSELF. It's hard to be happy when someone's being mean to you all the time.
  7. Allow yourself to enjoy the little things and appreciate the positives in yourself, your program, your staff, and your patrons!  Every library is different--and comparison is the thief of joy!--so be sure to celebrate your unique library and the difference it makes in your community, whatever the size.
  8. Once a day, or week, or hour, complete this statement: My SLP efforts made a difference to _______________. Simply acknowledging that you have made an impact is enough—no need to quantify.
  9. Set your timer for one minute and give yourself permission to BREATHE. Hide in the non-fiction section, take a walk in the parking lot, or sit at your desk and closer your eyes. Let your head and heart have one minute of nothing.
  10. Be kind to yourself... It sound intuitive but its amazing how often we forget to extend kindness to ourselves... especially when programs don't meet our expectations... We try and try again. 
  11. Take 5 minutes each day to laugh... nothing is insurmountable or truly terrible when you allow yourself to laugh. 
  12. Ask for help.  It's an obvious self care tip but I think it's the thing we forget first when SRP hits.  For some of us, there isn't any help but oftentimes, there are circulation assistants who would be happy to cut up strips of stickers or directors who could help cover the desk during a program.  If you're stuck on a program, ask a colleague for their opinions. Youth services librarians are superstars but we don't always have to go it alone. It's okay to ask for help, especially as we're weeks into summer and it's starting to feel a little endless.  
  13. Rejoice in the little things.  SRP is a looming, huge event, but it's made up of tiny little moments.  My morning iced coffee is an endless source of happiness in summer, as are a comfy pair of shoes to help me get through my day.  Teen volunteers who excel in their role make me smile. Cupcakes in the break room and a really successful readers advisory session can keep me going through a long day.  When the big picture becomes too much, focus on the little stuff.