CHICAGO — In a time of rapidly changing technologies, the role of the youth services librarian has expanded to include the realm of digital media. Supporting children’s literacy now means serving as a media mentor. “Becoming a Media Mentor: A Guide for Working with Children and Families,” published by ALA Editions, empowers youth services staff to confidently assist families and caregivers as they navigate the digital world, guiding them towards digital media experiences that will translate into positive and productive lifelong learning skills, regardless of format. Claudia Haines, Cen Campbell, and the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) meld the latest research and key messages from a variety of experts with replicable examples. This book:
- defines what it means to be a media mentor, providing historical background and context;
- outlines three types of media mentorship: media advisory, programming, and access to curated media;
- outlines the implications of media mentorship in libraries, focusing on a shift from the notion of “screen time” to “healthy media decisions”;
- draws on detailed case studies from a wide variety of libraries and community partnerships to showcase inspiring media mentorship in action with ages 0-14;
- provides guidelines for working with diverse families and caregivers; and
- explores management issues around media mentorship, ALSC competencies, suggestions of additional resources, and professional development.
Haines and Campbell are coauthors of ALSC’s white paper, Media Mentorship in Libraries Serving Youth. Haines leads storytimes, hosts maker programs, and gets great books into the hands of kids and teens as the youth services librarian and media mentor at the Homer (Alaska) Public Library. She blogs at never shushed. Campbell is a children’s librarian, an author, and the founder of LittleeLit.com, for which she was named a Library Journal Mover & Shaker in 2014. For more than eight decades, librarians from the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) have intensely scrutinized the children's books published each year, selecting the winning and honor books for the Newbery and Caldecott Awards. In addition, the ALSC division of the ALA is committed to creating a nation of readers, starting with the youngest. ALSC supports all those providing library services to children, including youth librarians, teachers, families, literature experts, publishers, and child advocates.
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