ALSConnect, December 2011, Vol. 9, no. 4

***Attn: This is an ARCHIVE page. Web sites and e-mail addresses referenced on this page may no longer be in service.***

Official Speaking | ALSC Voices | Bright Ideas | Hear Ye! Hear Ye! | Getting Together

Officially Speaking

Tell the Story: Be a Main Character

I grew up in South Dakota, near Laura Ingalls Wilder country. In fact, I went to Laura Ingalls Wilder elementary school. So it was natural that my mom read Laura’s books to me while I was waiting to learn to read.

In Laura, I found a little girl who was sometimes disobedient (like me), had a wide stubborn streak (like me), and was always up for a challenge (like me). While I enjoyed meeting Pa, Ma, Carrie, Jack, and Mr. Edwards, not even Mary, who shared my name, impacted me like Laura did. Because of Laura’s example, I complained less about my dusting chore (easy, compared to the chores Laura had!), badgered my mom for stories about her pioneer grandparents, and was even nicer to my older sister – at least a little.

Of course, Laura was the main character. She was at the center of the action, poised by the author to make a positive difference to young readers or listeners who might identify with her.

Being at the center of the action is the best place to have an impact. Not long ago I came across a quote from Joey Rodgers, former head of the Urban Libraries Council. She is quoted in a November 2002 American Libraries article as having said, “Advocates go out into the community and say ‘library, library, library.’ Players go out, listen, and then say ‘economic development, child safety, literacy. Here’s how we can help.’ There’s no question about who is welcome at more tables, or who is more valuable.”

Players are main characters in the story of libraries. If we want to make a difference in the world through our work with children and libraries, we must each be a player.

Here’s how to secure your main character status in the story of your library and community:

1. Make yourself valuable. Educate yourself in areas that need strengthening. ALSC offers all kinds of help: online courses, webinars, live chats, blog posts, conference programs, newsletter and journal articles. Look locally and regionally for more training.

2. Broaden your experience base. In your library, collaborate across departments, volunteer for cross-training, and welcome any opportunity to expand your understanding of the big picture. Be open to new jobs that might help you grow.

3. Get and stay involved in your profession and your community. Opportunities abound for meaningful participation. Making the first link sometimes takes persistence. Persist. Participation equals connections, and players are expert at connecting.

4. See needs. Ask yourself, “How can this be better?” “This” may be anything: how to teach early literacy practices to parents of daycare children, how to address the needs of hungry, restless children with nowhere but the library to go after school. Then use your knowledge, broad experience, and professional connections to craft a solution.

5. Take risks. Main characters who never take risks fade into anonymity, because they don’t accomplish anything meaningful. It can be daunting to raise your hand and say, “I have an idea.” Be confident. This may not be the idea that’s acted upon, but articulating it exercises the brain’s creativity—yours and that of everyone who hears it. Your idea may be the spark that ignites a brilliant project.

I invite you to step into the action and become a main character in your library, in your community, and in ALSC. We need your knowledge, your perceptions, your connections, and your voice. Just as Laura’s story helped us identify with her values, your story will also make a difference. Help the world to see that we can create a better future for children—through libraries.—Mary Fellows, ALSC President

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ALSC and 2012 Opportunities

“We open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first page is New Year’s Day. “ ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce

Since I hail from the state of Arkansas nicknamed as “The Land of Opportunity,” my family would always make a list of opportunities for the new year instead of resolutions. In extending that thinking to ALSC membership there are many opportunities that can fill in the blank professional pages of 2012.

Just to name a few…

  • Volunteer to serve on an ALSC committee. Over the next year I will make 700 appointments and I need your help! The volunteer form can be found on On this same page you can review the list of committees and find links to their charges as posted under ALSC’s seven priority groups of: I-Child Advocacy; II-Evaluation of Media; III-Professional Awards and Scholarships; IV-Organizational Support; V-Awards; VI-Partnerships; and VII-Professional Development. Find out which committees that you would best fit and submit a volunteer form. Current volunteer forms are crucial—whether you are interested in serving for the first time, you would like to get involved in another area of committee work, or you want to continue to serve on the same committee. Fill out the form this month or after the first of the year. OPPORTUNITY: Make a professional difference by serving on an ALSC committee and participate in the essential work of the association.
  • Review the ALSC Strategic Plan (2012-2017) at and think about your own library’s strategic plan, goals, and objectives. OPPORTUNITY: Review your libraries plan and strengthen how it promotes quality library service to all children in your community.
  • Live the envisioned future statement of ALSC “Libraries are recognized as vital to all children and the communities that support them.” OPPORTUNITY: Put your “passion into action” and make your library vital to all children!
  • Follow the content-rich ALSC Blog at Look through current posts or delve into the categories on the right side of the page for information on a wide range of relevant topics. OPPORTUNITY: Learn relevant, timely information from fellow ALSC members and get involved by commenting and sharing some of your own thoughts.
  • Follow the announcements of the children’s book awards on Monday morning, January 23, from the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting in Dallas, Texas. Watch the homepage for further information on press announcements and webstreaming. OPPORTUNITY: Start off January with a celebration of the finest of children’s books and materials for sharing with young people in your community.
  • Make plans to attend an ALSC special event. The Arbuthnot Lecture will be held at Miami University (Miami, Ohio). OPPORTUNITY: Hear Peter Sís deliver the Arbuthnot lecture live!
    Another special ALSC event in 2012 is the ALSC National Institute to be held in Indianapolis, Indiana, September 20-22, 2012 ( OPPORTUNITY: Network with colleagues from across the country, learn about new ideas and resources.
  • Make a commitment to become involved in ALSC or to continue your involvement in large, medium, or small ways whether it be service on an ALSC committee, reading and using the ALSC print and electronic publications, recruiting and/or mentoring a new ALSC member, or sharing award books and materials. ALSC relies on its members to make a difference in the lives of children through libraries. OPPORTUNITY: Fill 2012 with successful and meaningful contributions to ALSC and the profession and with good memories as we learn from and work with colleagues from across the country and beyond, and as we foster a sincere knowledge that we are moving forward together in creating a better future for children through libraries.

—Carolyn S. Brodie, ALSC Vice-President|President-Elect

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Help Us Serve You Better - Take Our Communications Survey

ALSC is surveying its members to garner information on how you seek out and process division communications and about what ALSC resources are important to you. The information collected will help ALSC in several ways:

1. Tailor our publications to better meet your needs.
2. Effectively share news and information about events/opportunities.
3. Become more efficient in the information transfer.

 This survey should take approximately 10 minutes to complete. By submitting the survey, you will greatly help ALSC in shaping and refining its professional resources and communications tools to better address your needs. To take the survey, please click on the link below:

We thank you in advance for your time and appreciate your assistance.

ALSConnect Name Change in 2012

Please note: In the new year, ALSConnect will have a new name. ALSC members will receive information soon about voting on a new name for the newsletter. The volume numbering will continue as is.

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Are You Connecting?

ALA Connect is a common virtual space in which to engage in ALA business and network with other members around issues and interests relevant to the profession. So be honest; have you been resisting? Another interface to learn, more social contacts to keep up with? Don't despair. ALA Connect is user-friendly and can be beneficial to your professional growth and personal fulfillment.

ALA Connect is especially important for ALSC committees too. Every committee (and official ALA group) has a space on Connect, where they can work virtually, share committee reports, and chat.

ALSC has created a step-by-step guide to help new users get started. So, if you have been hesitant, go ahead, take the plunge—connect!

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Thanks to Our Most Recent Donors

Many thanks to the following contributors to ALSC. To learn how you can support ALSC, visit and click on "About ALSC--Contact ALSC--Donate to ALSC” on the left-hand navigation menu.

Pura Belpré Award Endowment

Ed Spicer

Carole D. Fiore Leadership Fund

Jennifer L. Rodrick

Friends Silver Circle

Mary Fellows
David Mowery
Judy Zuckerman

Friends Notables Circle

Barbara Immroth
Kathleen Isaacs
Ed Spicer

Friends Circle

Marie-Helene Dere
Jeanette Larson
Kathie Meizner
Nancy Zimmerman

Updates to Friends of ALSC Coming Soon

Based on the recommendations of the Friends of ALSC Task Force, the ALSC Board has approved the establishment of a set membership year for the Friends of ALSC. The membership year will follow the calendar year – January through December – and will culminate in an end-of-year thank you/membership drive letter highlighting the use of Friends of ALSC funds.

All contributors to Friends of ALSC receive a special listing in ALSC’s newsletter, ALSConnect, their name on the ALSC website, and a Friend of ALSC ribbon at conferences and institutes. Members of the Friends of ALSC President’s Circle receive an invitation to the VIP reception preceding the Newbery/Caldecott banquet. Additionally, donors are recognized in the PowerPoint presentation at the Newbery/Caldecott banquet. Please refer to the Friends of ALSC website for donation timeline.

Starting in late December, the Friends of ALSC will also unveil a new logo. The new logo will help ALSC promote the work of the Friends group and the generous nature of its members.

Friends of ALSC was created to ensure excellence in the Association's traditional programs and services and to support growth in new directions as our profession meets the exciting challenges of the 21st century. The group supports initiatives in four key areas: professional development, early literacy, conference programs and institutes, and 21st century challenges. Learn more about contributing at the Friends of ALSC website:

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ALSC Voices

ALSC Profiles

Congratulations to Ellen Loughran for her 25+ years of membership in ALSC! We appreciate your commitment and loyalty. See a list of ALSC's long-term members under "Hear Ye! Hear Ye!"

Ellen Loughran
ALSC membership: 26 years

Where did you attend library school?
I went to Pratt Institute Library School. The school was located on the top floor of the beautiful, old Pratt Library—a building with wonderful architecture and glass floors in between the stacks.

How many years have you been an ALSC member?
I have been an ALSC member since 1985. That’s an unbroken run. I had belonged to the section before that, but had let my membership lapse.

What drives you to stay connected with ALSC?
First of all, I believe strongly in “putting my money where my mouth is” and supporting organizations that support the causes, such as libraries and literacy, that I believe in. Through committee work and attendance at ALSC programs, I have been able to see a broad picture of library service to children around the country. The publications show me how service to children and the adults in their lives is changing—or isn’t changing. Membership in ALSC keeps me thinking about children, literacy, and libraries.

Are you currently working?
I retired from my final full-time job as Manager of Children’s Services for the Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library (BPL) fourteen years ago and went back to customer service rather than administration. I worked for Baker and Taylor for three years supporting the staff in my department with my knowledge of children’s and young adult books. I am currently working as a reference librarian in two colleges, Hunter and New York City Tech. And I am ending an eight year stint teaching future librarians about literature for children and young adults at the Pratt School of Information and Library Science (SILS).

What was your very first library position?
I became a librarian because I had a part-time job as a pre-school storyteller. My supervisor was the children’s librarian. I couldn’t believe that she got paid to do her job—which seemed to be so much fun. I enrolled in Pratt and started working for the BPL as a librarian trainee. I was sold on the profession. I never looked back.

What has been your greatest career accomplishment thus far?
Passing it on through training and teaching. This profession has given me a lot. I want to make it possible for others to experience what I have had.

What to you has been the biggest reward of being involved in library service to children/youth?
I know that I have made contributions to all the library communities that I’ve belonged to. This feeling of accomplishment, of having been of service to children, teachers, and librarians, is the best reward.

What is your favorite ALSC memory?
I served on the 2004 Caldecott Award Committee, which was an exceptionally fine experience. To sit in a room filled with colleagues you respect, with the best picture books of a strong publishing year, talking books—just can’t be beat.

If you could give one piece of advice to library school students or new librarians, what would it be?
Join professional associations to get support and encouragement. Read professional literature to help you innovate in the services you deliver. When you are in the dumps, revise your resume. Your accomplishments will perk you up no end.

What is your all-time favorite children’s book?
Oy, what a question! Why only one? Here are three! Classic: Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden (love that cranky protagonist). Jerry Spinelli’s Maniac Magee (love the neighborhood mythology). Beatrice Schenk de Regnier’s May I Bring a Friend (for love of those animals and the joyful surprise on preschoolers’ faces at the page turn).

What are your hobbies?
Reading (of course), following gymnastics and figure skating, playing “Words with Friends” on Facebook. I enjoy parties, swimming, and playing with my big b/w cat, Clifford, who was named after a big, red dog. I want to get back into sewing and embroidery, two activities that gave me a lot of pleasure. And, of course, I have to decide soon what I will take on for my summer reading project. Past summers have seen me read all the Arbuthnot Award speeches and rereading all Avi’s books.

What three words best describe you?
In evaluations done by students, they often describe me as passionate, an advocate for children and young adults, and knowledgeable about the field and books.

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Brandy Sanchez
Regional Services Librarian
Daniel Boone Regional Library, Columbia, Missouri
ALSC membership: 6 years

Where did you attend library school?
University of Missouri-Columbia

What attracted you to library service to children?
Children are the most impressionable and passionate readers I know. Their contagious energy influences every aspect of my career.

Why did you join ALSC?
I joined ALSC to connect with librarians nationwide and learn from their innovative ideas so that I might improve services and collections for children at my own library.

What to you is the biggest reward of being a children's librarian?
There is nothing more rewarding than helping young people cultivate a love for reading, particularly reluctant readers who didn't know that words and pictures can peacefully coexist in a chapter book.

What is your favorite job responsibility?
As a regional services librarian, I am not bound to a single branch. The best part of my job is that I get to spread books, music, and more to children throughout our entire library district.

Do you have any advice or a helpful tip for library school students or new librarians just starting out?
Whenever a coworker tells me they are contemplating library school, I warn them that they must often be willing to move. This is an ever-expanding profession that will require you to look beyond your local library system for career options.

What is most popular at your library?
Preschool story time continues to be the most popular program within our library district. Where else can children find a refrigerator box transformed into a "Very Greedy Washing Machine?" The best part: Throwing underoos into the crowd, makes the room erupt in laughter every time.

What is your favorite children's book released so far this year?
I Want My Hat Back by John Klassen

What are your hobbies?
Photography, travel, experimenting with new gadgets

What three words best describe you?
Creative, curious, and fun-loving

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Bright Ideas

The Winter 2011 Children and Libraries is in the mail. Articles in this issue explore storytimes for families of children with ASD, open access children's digital literature collections, the renewal of Born to Read, digital cameras in library programming, and much more. Look for it in your mailbox soon!

Mother-Daughter Book Group Helps Bridge Communication Gap

Moms often find that relationships with their pre-teen daughters can become a bit of a challenge as adolescence creeps in. Combine that with the numerous demands on moms and daughters from school, sports, peer relationships, work, and home and it’s a recipe for detachment. Bridging that gap is the goal of the mother-daughter book club. Reading a book and discussing it together in a group setting can help moms and their girls stay connected and keep the lines of communication open. Since September 2007, I have tried to do this for girls in grades 4-6 and their moms; getting together once a month to share our experiences with a book.

Willow Run by Patricia Reilly Giff was the first book our group read. The Willow Run bomber plant that Henry Ford built during World War II is a ten minute drive from the library and it’s where the story takes place. At its peak the plant was the largest factory in the world and employed over 42,000 people including Rosie the Riveter. People from all over the United States moved to the sleepy little hamlet of Willow Run, Michigan to build the B-24 Liberator bomber. There was a major rush to hire large numbers of workers in a short period of time, so you can imagine the living conditions and relationships that formed in the “Bomber City.” The plant has a rich history and it made for good discussion, and as it turned out, the father of a couple of sisters in the group currently works at the plant. It’s a museum now.

Presently my group has 13 girl-mom pairs, and when they all show up it can be chaotic, but usually we end up with about six to eight pairs on any given night, which is a decent size for a conversation. I usually start with some prepared questions and, if all goes well, we’re on our way to a great discussion. I also try to pair a snack with the book. For example, for the Island series by Gordon Korman (which they all loved), I bought coconuts. Kensuke’s Kingdom by Michael Morpurgo, another shipwreck story, was also a favorite of the girls and we had pineapples.

Choosing the books is the most difficult part for me. Because of school and extra-curricular activities, I try to keep our books at about 200 pages or fewer—longer in the summer. Historical fiction is a favorite genre of mine but I found out the hard way that nobody else likes it. When I ask why, they all just say, “Too boring!” So after several attempts, I have decided to scrap that genre. Oddly, they did enjoy Al Capone Does My Shirts a lot. I guess they didn’t realize it was historical fiction.

We recently read Smile by Raina Telgemeier, our first graphic novel, and they absolutely gushed over it. Coming of age, family dynamics, and the author’s relationships with her friends are the book’s themes and that made for great discussion, with girls joining in the conversation who normally don’t have much to say. We rate the books on a scale of 1-10 and two of the girls gave Smile a 1000!

This month’s book is War Horse, also by Morpurgo, and yes, it is historical fiction, but I chose it months ago. We’re planning as a group to see the Steven Spielberg film version coming to theaters in December. Some other very popular titles were The Invention of Hugo Cabret, Flipped, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, The City of Ember series, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, and The Secret of Platform 13.

It all boils down to the search for the perfect book that I hope everyone will like; moms and daughters and me. So I’m now on the hunt for a graphic novel about a shipwreck and a girl with braces. That would be perfect.—Molly Beedon, youth librarian, Ypsilanti (Mich.) District Library

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Inventive Black History Month Program Draws a Crowd

Last winter, after two years of poor turnout for excellent Black History Month programs, I was determined to host a well-attended program. I brainstormed ideas with my manager, and she suggested an idea that had been successful years earlier—-a potato chip tasting to highlight George Crum, the African American inventor of potato chips. The idea sounded fun, so we set about thinking up a great name. I’m a firm believer that a program needs a great name to be a hit. In fact, I often name my programs before I’ve even worked out the details! And so, “Betcha Can’t Eat Just One! The true story of George Crum, inventor of potato chips” was born. With a catchy name, a date (Thursday), and a time (4 p.m.) submitted to the publicity and printing departments, I was off and running.

Next up, the details. First, I called around to see which librarians in my system had done a similar program. A coworker remembered using the same theme and she emailed me a copy of her short potato chip PowerPoint, featuring kid-friendly facts and trivia. Next, I read the available books on George Crum and chose Gaylia Taylor’s George Crum and the Saratoga Chip (Lee & Low, 2006), a perfect choice for my target age range of six and up. My final task was deciding how to manage the chip tasting. I decided to purchase five bags of markedly different potato chip flavors and present them as “mystery” flavors.

Although I only had about four advance sign-ups, I optimistically prepared for ten to twelve. On the afternoon of the program, I set up chairs in the meeting room, auditorium style, facing the screen. Along the side wall, I placed a long table with five bowls of “mystery” chips, each with a numbered sign (#1, #2, etc.) emblazoned with question marks. A stack of golf pencils and scrap paper was nearby, for writing down guesses and favorites. For “plates,” I used coffee filters. They absorb grease well and limit the amount of chips one can take. To add drama, I placed a whiteboard nearby to tally the results of the chip tasting. By a show of hands, I would count the favorite flavors and then “unveil” the winning chip. For myself, I staked out a podium at the front of the room. I would greet everyone, offer a few explanatory remarks about Black History Month, show the PowerPoint, read the book, and serve chips. I was ready and waiting.

When school let out, kids and families began to trickle in until I had a crowd of more than twenty people from ages four to fifty! I actually had to limit the amount of chips they could taste to ensure that I didn’t run out. In the end, without having to reinvent the wheel, I had a well-attended, fun program. The attendance was great, and I hope everyone learned something.

This year I am located at a different branch and will host the same program with a few improvements. I will provide tables for kids to use when writing down their guesses (I can’t believe I forgot that last year). I will buy more chips than I think I will need. And finally, I will take advantage of the spirit of fun and invite the participants to take part in a month-long Black History Month scavenger hunt, using the great set of laminated clues and pictures that I found in my new desk! Hopefully, George Crum and his potato chips will whet kids’ appetites for more knowledge of noteworthy African Americans.

And for the record—plain, old, regular potato chips won by a landslide!—Lisa Taylor, senior librarian, youth services, Ocean County (N.J.) Library

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Kids as Videographers

Madison (Ohio) Public Library learned recently that if you buy a small hand-held video camera, you're going to have kids who want to use it. If you let the kids use it, you'll have videos that shake so much you get seasick. If the kids have a specific purpose for using the camera, you'll get very serious videographers taking personal ownership of their projects.

Madison's two advisory groups, one for ages 5-8 and the other for ages 9-12, had the opportunity quite by chance in the fall of 2010 to submit video clips of people telling why they like their public library. Northeast Ohio Regional Library System (NEO-RLS) was looking to string the clips together to make a video to show state legislators why libraries are important. Madison had small hand-held videocameras, but no one had taken any clips. The submission deadline was looming, and the monthly meetings of the two advisory groups were approaching. Equal parts desperation and curiosity drove the librarians to give the 5-8 year olds the cameras. The kids canvassed the library looking for people willing to speak. Few refused to talk to earnest yet adorable kids. More than half of the video clips were unusable due to serious “camera wobble,” but several kids got some fabulous material.

When it came time for the older group to use the cameras, they were very methodical and persistent in trying to get people to be taped. And when they didn't think they had gotten quite enough people, they directed and filmed each others' responses to why they liked their library. Many more of their clips were potentials for inclusion both for quality content and significantly less nausea-inducing filming techniques! Fortunately, there was someone at NEO-RLS who was familiar with these kids and how much pride they took in helping their library. As a result there were a couple clips from each of the two groups included in the final video. The kids were so excited about their role in making the video that each group watched it two or three times to make sure they could identify their contributions. NEO-RLS even provided Madison with a copy of the video to post on its website so the kids could have their families watch what they helped make. 

It was shortly after their success with the NEO-RLS video that the older advisory group decided to submit clips for inclusion in National Library Week videos produced by ALA's American Libraries. They took the suggestions of things to submit—people using different aspects of the library—and either found patrons doing them or filmed each other. They got very little direction from the librarians because the kids knew what made Madison special and they filmed it. As a result they got clips in two separate videos and While the librarians were amazed, the kids were not. They knew they did a great job!

Even though the young videographers were very serious about what they did, they also had a ton of fun. In amongst the “serious” clips were lots of giggles and “are you still filming?” as someone did something completely goofy in front of the camera. Unfortunately, there haven't been any serious projects for a while, and the kids keep asking if there is anything else they can use the cameras for. These kids care about their library and they want to show others what makes their library special.—Melanie A. Lyttle, head of public services, Madison (Ohio) Public Library, and Shawn D. Walsh, senior technology analyst, Northeast Ohio Regional Library System. ...who both got a little queasy watching some of the video clips the kids made!

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"Scene" on ALSC-L - Books with funny vocabulary words

Back in September while making storytime plans, Beth Medley posted to ALSC-L, asking colleagues about their favorite books with fun, rare vocabulary words. ALSC-L subscribers offered the following suggestions. You might find these recommendations helpful while making your storytime plans as well.

Agatha's Feather Bed? by Carmen Agra Deedy
Armadilly Chili by Helen Ketteman
Delicious Hullabaloo/Pachanga deliciosa by Pat Mora
Double Trouble in Walla-Walla by Andrew Clements
A Huge Hog Is a Big Pig: A Rhyming Word Game by Francis McCall
The Iguana Brothers by Tony Johnston
Off We Go! by Jane Yolen
The Rattletrap Car by Phyllis Root
Sam and the Tigers by Julius Lester
Sleepy Pendoodle by Malachy Doyle
Slop Goes the Soup: A Noisy Warthog Word Book by Pamela Duncan Edwards
Tony Baloney by Pam Muñoz Ryan

Continuing on the topic of book recommendations, below is a list of suggested tween/teen thrillers for boys, also posted on ALSC-L in September.

Caretaker Trilogy: Firestorm, Timelock, Whirlwind by David Klass
The Chance Twin series:Death Run, First Strike, Sure Fire, Sharp Shoot by Jack Higgins & Justin Richards
Code Talker by Joseph Bruchac
The Extraordinary Adventures of Alfred Kropp by Rick Yancey
The Grassland trilogy by David Ward
Leepike Ridge by N.D. Wilson

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Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Member News

Julie Cummins has a new book coming out in February called Women Explorers: Perils, Pistols, and Petticoats (Dial, 2012), illustrated by Cheryl Harness. The companion book to Women Daredevils, it features ten women all born before 1900 who made dangerous and dramatic expeditions. These women and their achievements, equal in importance and significance to those of their male counterparts, are not found in history books, but they are revealed and saluted in Women Explorers.

ALSC Recognizes Long-Term Members

We all know that great members are what make a professional association tick. And, members who devote 25 plus years to an organization are truly the glue that holds the organization together and keeps it strong.

Beginning with this December issue of ALSConnect, we will recognize our 25-year ALSC members by sharing their names here. As the list below is the first of its kind, we are printing all those with 25 or more years as of December 1, 2011.

In each issue of the newsletter, we'll also print a profile of an honored member. See the ALSC Voices section of this issue to meet Ellen Loughran who has been an ALSC member for more than 26 years. Learn what keeps her connected to the association and what her favorite ALSC memory is.

If you or someone you know is missing from this list, please let us know at

Melody L. Allen
Alison E. Almquist
Ethel N. Ambrose
Gail Erwin Anderson
Ann U. Andrews
Viki L. Ash
Joan L. Atkinson
Rita Auerbach
Catherine Bailey
Gratia Banta
Raymond W. Barber
Barbara Barstow
Margaret V. Beck
Patricia Beck
Elizabeth A. Beiriger
Roslyn Beitler
Evangeline A. Benner
Barbara E. Bent
Lorraine K. Bentley
Mary Rinato Berman
Toni A. Bernardi
Nell Bernhard
Therese G. Bigelow
Barbara Billingsley
Diane D. Bishop
Rudine Sims Bishop
Leonella Blanke
Mary E. Bogan
Clara Nalli Bohrer
Jane Botham
Kay A. Bowen
Faith J. Brautigam
Linda M. Breder
Lucy D. Buchholz
Kathleen E. Burgess
Mary Ann Bursk
Margaret A. Bush
Helen P. Caffey
Wendy D. Caldiero
Cora Lou Caldwell
Teresa Mary Callaghan
Pauline L. Carl
Dudley B. Carlson
Michael Cart
Carolyn A. Caywood
Roxane Chadwick
Cynthia L. Chaklosh
Connie J. Champlin
Rosalind Chang
Theresa Black Chekon
Jane M. Chisaki
Diane M. Christian
Maria Cimino
Margaret M. Clark
Maria M. Clingan
Sandra A. Collins
Julie A. Corsaro
Marjorie A. Crammer
Lura E. Crawford
Julie A. Cummins
Sheri L. Daun-Bedford
Carol L. Day
Judy J. Decker
Carole Jeanne DeJardin
Nancy N. DeSalvo
Floyd C. Dickman
Cheryl L. Dixon
Carol A. Doll
Mildred M. Dorsey
Sherri Douglas
Marian C. Drach
Dr. Eliza T. Dresang
Mary Beth Dunhouse
Kathy Ann East
Gale Eaton
Linda K. Edgerton
May H. Edmonds
Steven Engelfried
Randall Enos
Connie C. Epstein
Dilys Evans
Dorothy J. Evans
Barbara K. Elleman
Ellen G. Fader
Kristina C. Farmer
Bruce Farrar
Adele M. Fasick
Susan W. Faust
Mary Fellows
Ruth E. Fenner
Emily H. Ferren
Carole D. Fiore
Juanita R. Foster
Beverly H. Francis
Helen Fuller
Diana B. Furr
Jean B. Gaffney
Marion F. Gallivan
Barbara A. Genco
Lolly H. Gepson
Lillian N. Gerhardt
Paula M. Gilbert
Virginia Lee Gleason
Carolyn B. Goodrich
Mae Graham
Marilyn Long Graham
Deborah P. Green
Ellin Greene
Grace Worcester Greene
Jacqueline R. Gropman
Virginia M. Gustin
Jean W. Hanlon
Sybil Ann Hanna
Jean A. Hatfield
Carla D. Hayden
Elizabeth G. Hearne
Phyllis S. Hedberg
Lucinda Heinlein
Karl Helicher
Linnea M. Hendrickson
Dr. Steven L. Herb
Shirley K. Hickey
Elsie Hill
Patricia S. Hines
Elizabeth A. Hoage
Mary K. Hobson
Marilyn P. Hollinshead
Emily C. Holman
Dr. Leslie Edmonds Holt
K. T. Horning
Andy M. Howe
Karen Nelson Hoyle
Marilyn Berg Iarusso
Dr. Barbara F. Immroth
Bonnie J. Janssen
F. Luree Jaquith
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard
Christine A. Jenkins
Ronald K. Jenkins
Chrystal Carr Jeter
Jerry D. Johnson
Yvette Johnson
Clara S. Jones
Alyson R. Juhnke
Bruce R. Kauffman
Mimi Kayden
Mary Lee Keath
Amy Kellman
Patrick Kennon
William B. Kershaw
Dr. Barbara Z. Kiefer
Erlene Bishop Killeen
Margaret M. Kimmel
Susan T. King
Barbara Lynn Kinkead
Margaret L. Kirkpatrick
Jerianne S. Kladder
Judith A. Klimowicz
Mary Koob
Carla J. Kozak
Gale R. Krekovich
Ginny Moore Kruse
Carol C. Kuhlthau
Sherrill A. Kumler
Hilda Weeks Kuter
Winifred C. Ladley
Carolyn D. Lane
Jeanette C. Larson
Kathy H. Latrobe
Starr LaTronica
Mildred C. Lee
Ann V. Leighton
Susan Lepore
Selma K. Levi
May Lilly
Christine M. Livingston
Marge Loch-Wouters
Jill L. Locke
Joan E. Loss
Ellen Loughran
Jean E. Lowrie
Margaret Read MacDonald
Penny S. Markey
John Mason
Phyllis Mattill
Barbara A. Maxwell
Sarah M. McCarville
Dorothy A. McCutcheon
Jean R. McDonough
Eileen Ann McGlynn
Debra McLeod
Gerry McMahon
Isabel G. McTavish
Kathie L. Meizner
Nadean J. Meyer
Margaret A. Miles
Marilyn L. Miller
Sara L. Miller
Janet R. Moltzan
Diane P. Monnier
Aurelia Moody
Todd Morning
Ruth A. Mountfort
Bruce C. Murray
Vaunda Micheaux Nelson
Sue McCleaf Nespeca
Alice Neve
Mary Lois Nicholls
J. Eileen Niven
Kemie Nix
Sandra L. Norfolk
Catherine A. Norris
Meb Norton
Bernadette H. Nowakowski
Kathleen F. Odean
Marilyn A. Olson
Elizabeth C. Overmyer
Zoe Ann Palmer
Neel Parikh
Janelle A. Paris
Caroline S. Parr
Susan H. Patron
Sylvia B. Paulson
Anne Pellowski
Linda A. Perkins
Karen M. Perry
Lauralyn Persson
John E. Peters
Carol K. Phillips
Carole C. Phillips
Marilyn Payne Phillips
Lynne R. Pickens
Cecily Pilzer
Susan J. Pine
Barbara Plaisted
Elizabeth A. Polk
Helen Gail Portwood
Connie Pottle
Margaret A. Preiss
Vernon W. Ramberger
Donald B. Reynolds, Jr.
Cynthia K. Richey
Eleanor F. Ripple
Sally A. Rizer
Janis L. Roberson
Connie C. Rockman
Dr. Susan Roman
Mary E. Russell
Grace W. Ruth
Marion Hanes Rutsch
Sharon Salluzzo
Judith M. Saltman
Maria B. Salvadore
Patricia M. Saylor
Pat R. Scales
Susan Scheps
Susan Schlein
Kathryn Z. Schueman
Helen F. Schwartz
Barbara Scotto
Stephanie Shauck
Sue Sherif
Louise L. Sherman
Martha A. Shogren
Elizabeth S. Shuman
Barbara L. Shumer
Carol Hanson Sibley
Robbin M. Sicherman
Kathleen A. Simonetta
Martha J. Sims
Linda E. Sleeman
Augusta M. Sloan
Henrietta M. Smith
Irene C. Smith
Maureen Millea Smith
Sharyl G. Smith
Mary R. Somerville
Mary Ann T. Sotero
Amy E. Spaulding
Karen Stanley
Anitra T. Steele
Ellen M. Stepanian
John Warren Stewig
Marcia E. Stickley
BenDell Sullivan
Peggy Sullivan
Margaret R. Tassia
Raymond F. Thomasson
SallyAnne M. Thompson
Margaret E. Tice
Katherine Todd
Ruth Toor
LuAnn Toth
Joanna M. Trefethen
Phyllis Van Orden
Helga B. Visscher
Thomas P. Viti
Dolores Vogliano
Leah M. Wagner
Caroline Ward
Linda Ward-Callaghan
Jan S. Watkins
Sarah Watson
Olivia R. Way
Clara J. Webber
Kay L. Webster
Patsy L. Weeks
Elaine Fort Weischedel
Kay M. Weisman
Trudy W. White
Jane M. Whiteside
Barbara D. Widem
Dr. Holly G. Willett
Letitia A. Wilson
Dr. Mary Jane Wiseman
Mary E. Withers
Patricia M. Wong
Johanna S. Wood
Cindy Woodruff
Blanche Woolls
Denise Anton Wright
Marlene Wright
Gretchen Wronka
Susan A. Zeigler
Judy Zuckerman

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Morris Seminar Participants Selected

Congratulations to the following ALSC members selected to participate in the 2012 ALSC Bill Morris Seminar on Book Evaluation Training: Allison Bruce; Amanda Goldson; Anna Brannin; Armin Arethna; Becky White; Beth Enochs; Cathy Potter; Chelsea Couillard; Christopher Brown; Christopher Lassen; Diana Nunez Stubee; Erica Glenn; Gwen Vanderhage; Janet Thompson; Jill Bellomy; Joanna Tamplin; Joyce Laiosa; Katherine McCabe; Kimberly Grad; Kristen Kirk; Larry Wawro; Marion Rocco; Mary Ann Scheuer; Miriam Medow; Rachael Vilmar; Rachel Fryd; Sharon Haupt; Sondra Eklund; Stephanie Bange; and Susan Polos.

This invitational seminar supports and honors William C. Morris’ dedication to connecting librarians and children with excellent children’s books. It brings ALSC members with limited evaluation experience together with those who have served on ALSC’s media evaluation committees for training and mentorship. Participants learn from experienced ALSC leaders about the importance of the group process and children’s media evaluation techniques. The Morris Seminar will be held again in 2014 at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, Pa. For more information, please visit 

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Watch the ALA Youth Media Awards Live

The 2012 Youth Media Awards (YMA), including the Newbery, Caldecott, Sibert, Belpré, Coretta Scott King, and Printz Awards, will be announced on Monday, January 23, during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Dallas.

ALA will host a live webcast with 10,000 virtual seats that will be available on a first come, first served basis. Online visitors can view the live webcast the morning of the announcements by visiting Those who are unable to join the webcast, can follow the results live on Facebook at!/alayma or Twitter at http:/

YMA junkees will enjoy the YMA YouTube Channel at, which includes interviews with authors and illustrators such as Ashley Bryan, Kate DiCamillo, Jacqueline Woodson, and Mo Willems, and video clips of previous years' award committee phone calls to winners and press announcements. After the 2012 YMA announcements, videos from the new award winners will be added.

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Upcoming Webinar Schedule

Make a resolution now to commit some time to your professional development. ALSC webinars make it easy. In December, January, and February, ALSC is offering three webinars designed to help you renew your library's programs and services.

ALSC webinars are a convenient way to bolster professional acumen. All webinars are run synchronously through Adobe Connect. Participants only need a computer and internet connection. These interactive and lively sessions are the perfect solution for anyone who seeks educational growth but doesn't have a lot of time or resources.

For information on times, fees, and registration, visit

Below is a calendar of upcoming webinars:


Storytelling 2.0
Friday, December 16, 2011, 10 - 11 a.m. CT


Día 201: Community Partnerships, Marketing, and Funding
Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 1 - 2 p.m. CT

Storytelling 2.0
Friday, January 13, 2012, 10 - 11 a.m. CT


Storytelling 2.0
Monday, February 6, 2012, 1 - 2 p.m. CT

 Connecting with Many Children from Many Cultures: Cultural Literacy @ your library
Friday, February 10, 2012, 1 - 2 p.m. CT 

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New Día Website Launched; Registration for Día 2012 Now Open!

To better serve the growing population of libraries offering events for El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day), also known as Día, ALSC launched a new website on November 14. The completely redesigned Día site includes a new downloadable Día resource guide designed for public and school librarians, giving them everything they need to produce a Día event at the library.

Also, libraries may now register their 2011-2012 Día events into a national database and receive free Día stickers and buttons, while supplies last. In 2012, ALSC is focusing on serving the needs of parents, caregivers, and children. To that end, the site features a new section devoted to resources especially for them. For more, visit

Funding for the website redesign was provided by a grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

New Great Websites for Kids to Launch Soon

ALSC's online website directory, Great Websites for Kids (, has been transformed. The new site, launching soon, has been completely redesigned with a fresh, colorful, and kid-friendly look and interactive social media enhancements. Same great site recommendations, whole new vibe. Stay tuned!

Libraries and Families Award

The National Center for Family Literacy (NCFL) is now accepting applications for the third annual Libraries and Families Award. Three U.S.-based library literacy programs that serve families will win $10,000 each and scholarships to the National Conference on Family Literacy in 2012 and 2013.

Is your library literacy program making a difference for families? Do you have a unique and innovative approach? Both previously existing and new programs can apply.

The online application deadline is 11:59 p.m. on February 6, 2012. Winners will be notified in late February or early March. For more information, please visit:

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Books to Give This Holiday Season

The Butler Children’s Literature Center at Dominican University has released a list of books written for children and young adults suitable for giving as holiday gifts to young people.

The list, available at, was compiled by Thom Barthelmess, curator of the center, and Janice Del Negro, assistant professor in Dominican’s Graduate School of Library and Information Science, author, and master storyteller. Both teach courses on children’s literature and library service to young people at Dominican.

The list includes recommendations based on grade level of the reader, from preschool through grade 9, and a variety of genres, from picture books to Christmas seasonal stories and thrillers for young teens.

Another Book Guide for Gift Giving

Reading Rockets’ 2011 Books as Gifts Guide makes it easy to find great books kids will enjoy. Created by children's literature expert, and ALSC member, Maria Salvadore, the list is a delightful collection of 80+ terrific nonfiction and fiction titles for kids ages 0-9 and includes recommendations for kids to read on their own and books for kids to read with a caring adult. The guide is available at:

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Grassroots Effort for "Take Your Child to the Library Day"

Caitlin Augusta, Stratford (Conn.) Library, and Nadine Lipman Waterford (Conn.) Public Library, CT, have started a very grassroots initiative called “Take Your Child to the Library Day.” They’ve set the date as the first Saturday in February (February 4, 2012). The idea sprang from the recent “Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day,” held Saturday, December 3. They've set up a blog at:, and a public Facebook page is also being planned.

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New National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature to Be Announced

Librarian of Congress James H. Billington will announce the next National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature on January 3, 2012. The post was created by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, the Children’s Book Council (CBC) and Every Child a Reader to raise national awareness of the importance of young people’s literature as it relates to literacy, education, and the development and betterment of children’s lives. Appointed for a two-year term, the National Ambassador will choose a platform that reflects his or her personal interests (also to be revealed on the announcement date) and advocate this policy throughout his or her travels and tenure.

The National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature is named by the Librarian of Congress based on recommendations from a selection committee representing many segments of the book community. The selection criteria include the candidate’s contribution to young people’s literature and ability to relate to children. Several ALSC members were on this year’s selection committee: Jennifer M. Brown, Children’s Editor, Shelf Awareness; Caroline Ward, Librarian/Youth Services Coordinator, Ferguson Library, Conn. and Professor, Pratt Institute; Junko Yokota, Professor, National-Louis University; Director, Center for Teaching Through Children's Books.

For more information about the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, go to

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Getting Together

ALSC 2012 National Institute

Join ALSC in Indianapolis, Ind., September 20 – 22, 2012 for our biennial National Institute! This two and a half day workshop, devoted solely to children’s and youth library services, offers a small, intimate setting for participating in programming and getting to know colleagues. Programs will delve into some of the most important topics in library service to children such as using technology in programming, what’s hot in children’s spaces, working with underserved populations, and using local partnerships to improve programming. Attendees are sure to go home feeling reinvigorated about the profession and more connected to colleagues in the field.

The institute will kick off the Caldecott Award’s 75th anniversary celebration and feature a very special Breakfast for Bill to commemorate the occasion. This star-studded event is sure to dazzle and inspire; award-winning authors and illustrators scheduled to speak include: Peter Brown, Denise Fleming, Eric Rohmann, Kevin Henkes, Gary Paulsen, April Pulley Sayre, and Doreen Rappaport.

The institute is being held at the Sheraton Indianapolis City Centre. Specifics regarding registration and programs are at: Questions? Contact program officer Jenny Najduch at or (312) 280-4026.

2012 Arbuthnot Lecture Tickets

Peter Sís’s 2012 Arbuthnot Honor Lecture will be delivered on April 4 (time TBA) at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. There is no charge to attend, but reservations are required. Ticket requests to reserve your spot will be accepted beginning Friday, January 13. More details will be posted as they become available at

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