CHICAGO – Two new video PSAs featuring Jeff Kinney, New York Times bestselling author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, are now available from the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). Kinney is the national spokesperson for the 2014 observance of School Library Month, and in the PSAs he encourages viewers to “celebrate how our nation’s school libraries change lives.” The videos can be viewed at and downloaded from www.ala.org/aasl/slm/2014/psa.
School Library Month honors the essential role that strong school library programs play in a student's educational career, and the 2014 theme is “Lives Change @ your library.” In one of the 30 second videos PSAs, Kinney speaks to the role of the school librarian in technology instruction. In the second, he relates how students who have access to a school library program staffed by a certified school librarian achieve higher test scores.
When asked how a school library changed his life, Kinney said, “When I was a kid, I was blessed to have a great, well-stocked library at my elementary school in Fort Washington, Maryland. That's where I discovered hundreds of great authors, including Judy Blume. I tore through her catalog, but the book I re-read was ‘Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing.’ Without Peter Hatcher, I'm not sure there would be a Greg Heffley. I'm very grateful to my school for placing such a value on books!”
Kinney’s "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" is the story of middle-school underdog Greg Heffley, who shares his life in a journal filled with cartoons and text. The first book in the series was released in April 2007 and was an instant bestseller, capturing the attention of reluctant readers, their parents and librarians everywhere. There are now eight books in the series, the most recent, “Hard Luck”, released on Nov. 5, 2013. It was the No. 1 bestselling book of 2013, adult or children’s.
Kinney’s participation as the 2014 School Library Month spokesperson is generously supported by Abrams. More information on the April celebration can be found on the AASL website at www.ala.org/aasl/slm.
The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), promotes the improvement and extension of library services in elementary and secondary schools as a means of strengthening the total education program. Its mission is to advocate excellence, facilitate change and develop leaders in the school library field.