Institute Education Programs

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ALSC offers a wide variety of education programs at the 2018 National Institute. All programs are included with your registration fee. Programs will repeat throughout the Institute so that participants have the opportunity to attend eight programs in total. Specific program speakers, dates and times will be announced in the spring, but the overall schedule is available at this time. Program offerings and details are subject to change.

Program Descriptions

Afterschool at the Library: Mistakes may have been made
Providing kids with positive things to do after school is a valuable service, but how do you avoid letting your program devolve into afterschool child care or absolute chaos? Learn how Dallas Public Library implemented an afterschool program that created more problems than it solved and the best practices they learned from afterschool professionals to turn it around.

Demystifying Advocacy: Building support for your library
New to, or not quite comfortable, doing advocacy work for your library?  The Association for Library Service to Children’s toolkit for advocating with elected officials about the importance of youth librarianship will provide the boost in confidence you are looking for.  Learn how the toolkit is already being used, including for National Library Legislative Day. Plus, take part in a hands-on activity, which will give participants the tools needed to advocate in their communities.

Every Child Ready to Read and Supercharged Storytimes: How these two research-based projects connect and add value to early learning
Research from the PLA/ALSC Every Child Ready to Read Project and VIEWS2 research that produced "Supercharged Storytimes" have overlapping early literacy domains/skills which promote early literacy behaviors for library staff, parents, caregivers and children. This program will address how librarians can use this knowledge to support early learning in storytime programs and throughout their community.

Feed the Whole Child: Un-limiting approaches to filling children’s heads, bellies, and hearts
Librarians have long worked to provide additional support in the summertime when school is out and children are at risk of going without. Yet librarians also operate under self-imposed limitations that prevent them from effectively helping kids. What limits are appropriate? How can we move past traditions that harm kids? How can we change our library culture and work with our communities to ensure all children have access to all the resources they need?

Grown-ups Are People Too: Promoting caregiver bonding with awesome early literacy programming
Before you can support baby brain development at your library, you must get those baby bum-bums in your seats. However, babies can't drive, so it is up to you to offer programming that excites grown-ups in your community. Learn pop song lap bounces, practice babywearing dance moves, and gain some tips for a toddler photo booth. These trendy topics will fill your spaces, be Snapchatted, and promote an emotional bond between caregiver and child.

Identity in Children's Literature: Representing all kids through library programming
This panel and Q&A pairs children's book creators – writers, illustrators and editors – with librarians to discuss the portrayal of diverse characters in children's books and how these books can be used in public and school library programming. Creators will highlight a book while their librarian partners will present programming ideas inspired by the titles that can be easily implemented in schools and public libraries. The session will end with an audience Q&A.

Implementing a Program Quality Initiative
In 2013, the Jacksonville Public Library launched a program quality initiative that focuses on delivering intentional programming that supports positive outcomes for youth. Each one of our staff has become a Ninja Educator, teaching youth through fun hands-on programming that builds the following core academic and learning success skills: literacy, problem solving, creativity and innovation, teamwork and collaboration, and communication and connections. Join this session and learn how to develop quality standards, train staff to implement intentional programming, and implement a continuous improvement system.

Inclusive Programming: Advocacy and access
Libraries can help create a culture of advocacy and inclusivity for individuals, care partners, and families with children who have Autism. By forging collaborative partnerships, offering free adaptive programming, and providing resource support, the library of today is empowering and encouraging community members to engage in activities at the library and beyond. Learn how your library can be a part of the access with program ideas and practical tools.

Inspiring Sensory Play: Babies and toddlers
Engage your littlest patrons with a program that incorporates the early literacy skill of play. This program will provide participants with instructions on how to implement a sensory program on any budget, explore hands-on sensory stations, and learn how to turn a dollar store pool noodle into several early literacy activities.

Movin’ and Groovin’ in the Library
Get off your seat and move your feet! Libraries across the country are developing programs that encourage children and families to explore physical activity, both inside the library and out in nature. Learn about programs such as storywalks, musical play, and yoga storytime in this session, and experience a little movement and activity for yourself.

Moving from Ladybugs to Ladders: The a-ha moments that led to groundbreaking program models at Madison Public Library
Is your library offering the same classic menu of children’s programs that it offered ten years ago? Have you been wondering if there’s a different way to serve kids and families and still measure meaningful outcomes? Madison Public Library has received national attention in the last few years for innovative programming concepts. From preschool to middle school and beyond, hear some of the radical revelations that catapulted them in exciting new directions. Come play!

Programming Be”Tween” the Lines
Tweens- ages 8-13- are sometimes the forgotten crowd when it comes to library programming. Like the proverbial middle child, they are too old to join the little kids, but too young to join the teens. What programs can a library hold that are challenging, yet fun for this age group? The presenters will outline research-based STEAM, Making, and other programs that have been successful for this age group at their library.

Reaching Out from Within: Creating strong partnerships
To create strong youth partnerships and communities of practice, it’s vital to step outside our four walls and represent the library at the community youth services table. Learn strategies to create successful outreach partnerships with potential partners including schools, daycares, child serving agencies, and municipal and community organizations. We’ll explore methods to bring reluctant administrators/staff on board for these outstanding advocacy efforts and suggestions on how to most effectively represent the library.

Review is Critical: Developing decolonial book evaluating competencies
The evolution of children’s literature includes the ways it is evaluated and analyzed. Words and images in books not only shape youth’s reading habits, but they contextualize their identities and worldviews, which is often subverted in text. Evaluating these books through a critical lens reveals colonial subversions by identifying expressions of power, privilege, and oppression.This program explores critical literacy, decolonization, and other tools useful in evaluating and selecting children’s literature.

Summer (Mis)Adventure! Change is Hard: How one public library took a leap and learned a lot
After implementing roughly the same summer reading program for over 30 years, the Pikes Peak Library District decided to rip off the Band-Aid and change the whole shebang.  With the help of the Beanstack web application, we created a trackable, customizable, experiential summer learning program focused on intrinsic motivation and community-wide engagement.  Library and human nature lessons were learned, valuable partnerships were formed, and we realized just how invested our community is in their library’s summer reading program.

When Leveling Helps, When it Doesn’t, and How Libraries Can Make the Best of It
At best, leveling books is another tool to help children choose “just right” books. At worst, it is an expensive product that labels kids, kills the joy of reading, and makes false promises to educators. This behind-the-scenes look at how leveling works can help us understand both what we can use in each leveling system and how to talk with educators and parents about avoiding the pitfalls.