ALSC Matters! | June 2013, Volume 11, no. 2

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

  Officially Speaking  |  ALSC Voices & Faces  |  Bright Ideas  |  Getting Together  |  Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Officially Speaking

ALSC: Looking Backward with Pride, Looking Forward with Hope

When I graduated from England (Arkansas) High School in 1976 as a bicentennial graduate, our class motto was the phrase that follows the colon in the title above. That year, I was president of my senior class of 66 students as we wore regalia depicting the red, white, and blue of our country’s anniversary celebration and carried the peppermint carnation as our class flower. That motto has remained special over the years and I have it in calligraphy in my office.

This past year is certainly one that I will always look back on with pride of all that ALSC has accomplished. What we have all accomplished together. And, I certainly look forward to what is to come as we continue the good work of creating a better future for children through libraries.

To reflect back with lots of detail(!), I would like to draw your attention to an annual occurrence--in the final weeks of service as ALSC president, the president submits an annual report to the American Library Association that highlights the division’s special activities and accomplishments that have occurred over the past year. This report is shared with the ALA Executive Board and distributed to ALA Council at Annual Conference. The report is largely prepared for our organization by the skillful and savvy members of the ALSC staff. The 2012-2013 report is a lengthy document that will be available to you online at shortly before the annual conference in Chicago begins.

Our report will include information on many key areas of accomplishment and steadfastness including: Membership, Professional Awards and Scholarships, Literary & Related Awards, Initiatives, Projects and Partnerships, Publications and Communications, ALSC Events and Continuing Education, Board Actions, ALSC Finances, and Moving into the Future.

As my final President’s column in ALSC Matters!, I thought I would share with you the final section of our ALSC annual report titled Moving into the Future.

Moving into the Future

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) is dedicated to creating a better future for children through libraries. The focus on excellence in library service to children, tweens, their families, and caregivers can provide the catalyst to change young people’s lives as they strive to achieve their very best.

Together as professionals we are the world’s largest organization dedicated to the support and enhancement of library service to young people, which is comprised of children's and youth librarians, youth literature experts, publishers, education and library school faculty members, and others who are dedicated to better library services and resources for all children. Our membership is vibrant, energetic, knowledgeable, and dedicated.

We will work together to move the association forward by meeting the goals and objectives of our 2012-2017 ALSC Strategic Plan ( At the same time, we will maintain constant focus on our core values of collaboration, excellence, inclusiveness, innovation, integrity and respect, leadership, and responsiveness. With the assistance of our highly professional ALSC staff we have the support and association expertise to help move our initiatives forward.

We will continue to strengthen our connections with communities by providing our ALSC membership with creative ideas that enhance children’s learning and reading experiences; encourage the use of innovative technologies and creative applications by library professionals and the families we serve; foster cutting-edge ways to learn, participate, and network as advocates for children; and develop mentoring arenas so that current, dedicated leaders can help our forthcoming professionals.

We will plan to continue enhancement of member communication, engagement, and transparency through community forums, print and electronic publications, and social network venues. Engagement with members through virtual committee work and continuing education endeavors will continue to offer new opportunities and new learning experiences. ALSC launched a new website in May of this year titled “Everyday Advocacy” (, a “go-to” site with advocacy information and tips for youth services librarians and others who seek to advocate for children and libraries. We plan to continue to enhance and develop this site as a place for members and advocates to share library and community stories and to read the inspirational stories of others.

We will honor, through awards and celebrations, the successes of others. Our book, media, and professional awards recognize and celebrate excellence--an important aspect of our association’s efforts. For example, this past year we celebrated the Caldecott Medal’s 75th anniversary through many special events and activities that culminate with the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago, June 27-July 2, 2013.

ALSC has an historic tradition and commitment of building diverse communities of service and practice for children and their families through the library, in the home, out into the world, and into the future. We look forward to a future where libraries are recognized as vital to all children and the communities that support them.

I hope that you will turn to the 2012-2013 ALSC President’s report and read of the accomplishments of so many. I thank you for your support this past year, while I served as your ALSC President; it was truly an honor to hold this office and have the opportunity to meet and work with so many of you. We accomplished much this past year and it was truly memorable in so many ways.—Carolyn S. Brodie, ALSC President

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Working Together: The Power of Partnerships

Where would Frog be without Toad? George without Martha? Elephant without Piggie? That ponderous polar bear without the gregarious goose? Harry, Hermione, and Ron without one another?* And where would we youth services librarians be without support and inspiration from our colleagues and collaborators pursuing exemplary service to children and families?

Just as interaction in the literary relationships cited above adds richness and texture to character and story line, professional partnerships form a multi-layered foundation for fully serving children and families. Collaboration is a cornerstone of ALSC. It is the first item listed in the core values of our strategic plan, and there is an entire priority group of committees assigned to partnerships. We recognize that working together with others who serve children increases our effectiveness exponentially.

To demonstrate the dynamic power of partnerships, Brigid Hubberman, executive director of the Family Reading Partnership (FRP) of Tompkins County, will present at the Leadership & ALSC session at the Annual Conference in Chicago. The FRP is a grassroots organization that has partnered with schools, the business community, health care providers, social service agencies, and others to create a culture of literacy, “one book, one child, one family at a time” for the past 15 years. Their efforts have been an inspiration to communities around the country and have been heralded as a model by experts in the field. All are welcome and encouraged to attend this meeting on Saturday, June 29, 8:30-11:30 a.m. at the Sheraton, Sheraton Ballrooms 2 & 3.

ALSC 101 is another fine forum for meeting up with fellow collaborators. Learn the ins and outs of ALSC, how to get the most out of conference, meet members and mentors, and (possibly) win fabulous prizes. I look forward to seeing you there Saturday, June 29, 4:30-6:30 p.m., at McCormick Place, Hall A, Meeting Room A. If you still have questions about which committee to join, drop by the All-Committee meeting Sunday, June 30, 8:30-11:30 a.m., at the Sheraton in Sheraton Ballroom 5 and Chicago Ballroom 6. Members are welcome to sit in on any committee there and discover the fine work these collaborations accomplish. Finally, be sure to attend the ALSC Membership Meeting, Monday, July 1, 10:30-11:30 a.m, McCormick Place-S502, for the latest updates regarding the work of the organization and recognition of new members.

As we continue our time-honored collaborations with our natural partners in AASL, PLA, and YALSA, we have expanded our external relationships to embrace productive partnerships with other groups detailed at to provide additional resources to our members and their clientele.

The most effective partnership of all, however, is comprised of ALSC members. As an ALSC member, you know that the collective expertise, energy, and commitment of the membership achieve the greatest accomplishments, from awards to Quicklists. Together we all contribute through committee work, online discussion, social networks, and community forums. For those who are not able to attend conference, ALSC has expanded opportunities through which they can communicate and collaborate, via our online communities, in mutual support of our common goal of creating a better future for children through libraries. Please subscribe to an electronic discussion list, beginning with ALSC-L, which provides an opportunity to converse among your peers, and both give and receive advice and recommendations. Instructions for subscription and a list of other EDLs are available at Webinars provide quality professional development opportunities, while community forums offer real-time interaction with colleagues across the country and are archived for those who are engaged elsewhere during that time. Notices of both are publicized on ALSC-L. The ALSC Blog at features fascinating guest posts on a vast range of topics by front-line librarians and other experts. Please consider becoming an author as well as regular reader. Additional links to ALSC social networks are found at

I hope to see you, my splendid friends and fellow collaborators, in Chicago. Please look for me and say “Howdy, Partner”. And if you aren’t at conference, feel free to drop me a line via email with your thoughts and wishes for the coming year. I’m looking forward to working with you.—Starr LaTronica, ALSC Vice-President/President-Elect

*Authors of works referenced above: Lobel, Arnold; Marshall, James; Willems, Mo; Bloom, Suzanne; Rowling, J.K.

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Thank You 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.

Friends of ALSC

Notable Circle

Sharon Grover
Beth-ann Roth 

Friends Circle

Maren Kilgallen

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ALSC Voices and Faces

ALSC Profile

Ramona Kerby
Professor and Coordinator, School Library Program, and coordinator of the Writing for Children and Young Adults program
McDaniel College, Westminster, Md.
ALSC Membership - 25 years
Where did you attend library school?
I attended Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas for my M.L.S. and Ph.D.
What was your very first library position?
My first library position was at J.B. Little Elementary School in Arlington, Texas, as the first professional elementary school librarian the school had ever had.
What is your favorite library memory?
My favorite library story is from Little School, when I came back to school too soon after being sick, and I fainted at the circulation desk before school. A fifth grade girl continued to check out her book, stepped over me, and said, “Well, I guess Mrs. Kerby is dead.” I felt proud to influence children reading while flat on the library floor.
You’re marooned on a desert island; what three books and one food item do you need to survive?
Middlemarch by George Eliot
Children of God by Maria Doria Russell
Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel
Dried apricots
What are your hobbies?
Reading, watching movies, knitting, going to New York City 
What three words best describe you?
Funny, Tenacious, Tired

Reminiscing: A First ALA Conference: 1953

June, 1953 -- Dwight Eisenhower was the U.S. president. Dag Hammarskjoeld had become secretary general of the United Nations in May, two months after the death of Joseph Stalin. The next month, Elizabeth II became Queen. The American Library Association met in Los Angeles, California, toward the end of June, and its Council adopted the statement on freedom to read that had been drafted at the Westchester Conference in May.  Its concluding sentences still ring with conviction:  
We believe rather that what people read is deeply important; that ideas can be dangerous; but that the suppression of ideas is fatal to a democratic society.  Freedom itself is a dangerous way of life, but it is ours.
That Los Angeles ALA conference was the first one I attended. I have no memory of the Council’s action nor of any comment on it.  
A preconference on children’s librarianship in Pasadena enhanced the prospect of going to ALA. I loved meeting children’s librarians from across the U.S. and hearing the inspirational Frances Clarke Sayers, children's librarian, author of children's books, and lecturer on children's literature. Attending the Newbery-Caldecott Banquet was a must. A ticket cost $7.50, but it was worth every cent.  Presiding there was Elizabeth Gross, Coordinator of Children’s Services at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore. She had taught the course on children’s materials and services that I had taken in library school at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. I was thrilled that she remembered me and urged me again to consider working at Enoch Pratt. I lost no time in visiting the placement area and committing myself to a new job there, to start in September. I was assured I would probably be at a branch library, on my own as the children’s librarian, not just one of three in a branch, as I was in Kansas City, and my salary would increase by ten per cent -- from $3,000 per year to $3,300. Riches! 
Doris Gates, a children’s author and former children’s librarian, spoke at the Children’s Library Association program.  I was charmed by her.  Among other things, she responded to criticism she had received for having written a book for children using a controlled vocabulary. She explained that she had heard that Will James’s Newbery-Award-winning Smoky the Cowhorse was going to be revised to make it easier to read and she thought it was better to write an original book that was easier to read than to corrupt a classic. That made sense to me. 
General sessions were scheduled in an auditorium, while two hotels served as headquarters, meeting sites, and exhibit space. Meetings often were scheduled well into the evening, but time was allowed for meals. The scholarly Robert Bingham Downs of the University of Illinois presided as ALA president with pleasant formality and occasional flashes of humor. One afternoon was reserved for tours, and I chose to visit film studios.   
Square dancing was a conference tradition. I chose it over a concert offered free to attendees. I think that square dancing had been introduced after World War II, when somewhat bumptious new librarians, many of them military veterans, wanted to liven up the organization. They also pushed for new leadership or at least new ideas on the part of the leadership, and their efforts were meeting with success.
I walked past every one of the exhibits, as we had been encouraged to do in library school, as a gesture of gratitude to the exhibitors, and a practice I have followed pretty well ever since. I left the conference rather sure I would have a new job in September -- and I did. I also left with the conviction that I would go again to an ALA conference, learn more, meet more people, see more country -- and I have. -- Peggy Sullivan, ALA member: 62 years; ALSC member: 30 years
Conference attendance in 1953: 3,230; ALA Membership: 19,551  
Conference attendance in 2012: 20,134; ALA Membership: 57,540
Recipients of the 1953 Newbery and Caldecott awards:  Ann Nolan Clark for Secret of the Andes (Viking) and Lynd Ward for The Biggest Bear (Houghton) 

Bright Ideas

Where's That Giggling Coming From?

A three-year-old yells in the children's department to his mother, “ABCs, ABCs!” He points and runs toward a computer on a child's-height table. He's heading for the Baby Smash computer. Soon the toddler is happily clicking the mouse and pushing keys on the keyboard and laughing and smiling. All is right with the world.
This freeware product, at, is the perfect thing for our library. We recycle old computers and make parents happy, with a side benefit of teaching children about colors, shapes, and letters. Onto old computers that can't be used in the library for any other purpose, the freeware program is loaded. Using an old monitor, keyboard, and mouse, babies, toddlers, and the occasional older child can sit, press keys, click the mouse, and watch and listen to what happens. The best part...for once, young children can bang away on the keyboard and know they are making the computer do something. No one is telling them, “Don't touch,” or “Be gentle.” This is their computer at the library to use. And it is in use seemingly all the time. Even better is when curious adults stop to press a few keys and see what happens. They leave with smiles just as big as the children!
How did we find this fabulous software? We didn't. It was suggested to us. A computer scientist friend had been looking for some way to allow his 14-month-old son to be with him while working in his home office filled with bits of old computers. Scouring the internet he found BabySmash, and his son loved it. Every key on the keyboard does something. Press a letter key and the letter comes on the screen and its name is said. Press a function key and a red square might come up, and a voice says, “Red square.” Move the mouse and colored dots trail across the screen. Click the mouse button and something else happens. 
It's fun seeing how parents and children use BabySmash. Sometimes they sit together and press buttons. Other times, the child presses buttons and the adult browses for books to borrow. It's the child carried screaming from the library because he doesn't want to stop playing on BabySmash that makes us both smile and cover our ears at the same time. Soon it will be time to upgrade computers in the library, and maybe we'll be able to have more than one BabySmash computer in the department.—Shawn D. Walsh is Emerging Services and Technologies Librarian at Madison (Ohio) Public Library. Melanie A. Lyttle is Head of Public Services there, and she is lucky enough to have her office right by the BabySmash computer!

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Fingerplay Fun Friday

Taking a page right out of Flannel Friday’s* ( book, the Washington County (Oregon) Cooperative Library Services (WCCLS) recently launched a brand new weekly service for our library community: Fingerplay Fun Friday!  
Each and every Friday, we post a new rhyme video on our kids’ blog:  The posts are automated to go out on both our Facebook and Twitter feeds.  This helps them reach the widest audience.  The rhymes that we share are performed by a librarian and are intended to assist caregivers in sharing quick and fun literacy building activities with their children.  
By using this simple and convenient online video-sharing tool, we have increased our ability to connect with parents and caregivers outside of the storytime environment.  We also are able to provide a deeper conversation about why the rhymes are helpful.  Each rhyme includes a brief description of why it is important and how it ties-in with early literacy skill-building.  When appropriate, we recommend additional resources that can help extend the fun, like book recommendations or craft activities.
WCCLS is dedicated to ensuring that all children in Washington County grow into strong and confident readers. We firmly believe that the best place to start is with the caregiver.  When caregivers have a thorough understanding of how reading-readiness works and a great big arsenal of fun ideas for engaging children in literacy enrichment activities, success is sure to follow.  
Sharing rhymes is a great way to form a solid connection between caregiver and child. The rhyme videos are short and sweet, making them convenient for busy parents.  
Fingerplay Fun Friday builds on our already successful rhyme-sharing initiative.  Over the past year, WCCLS has offered online rhyme videos and free rhyme booklets to the children, families and childcare providers in our community.  For more information, visit: and --Rick Samuelson, Youth Services Librarian, Washington County (Oregon) Cooperative Library Services
*Flannel Friday is a weekly online event for sharing flannel board and other library storytime activity ideas.  

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“Scene” on ALSC-L

Members of the ALSC-L electronic discussion list know that they can count on fellow subscribers for recommendations and answers fast!  Some recent exchanges are shared below; maybe you too will find them helpful.
Easy Dad-friendly Crafts. A recent poster was in need of some quick and easy craft ideas for a Dad’s group meeting at the library. You might want to file these ideas away for next Father’s Day!
Neck ties:  Cut out a tie "shape" from cardboard—a knot & tie or a bow tie. Use the cardboard template to trace and cut out ties on construction paper (or craft foam). Kids and dads decorate the ties with crayons, markers, stickers, cut-outs from magazines, etc. Attach yarn to either side of the tie knot or to the center of the bowtie. Dads can tie them on and wear them for the rest of the program and out of the library. (Idea from Cynthia K. Richey, Director, Mt. Lebanon (Pa.) Public Library)  Find a tie pattern at: Hint: Pipe cleaners work nicely for diagonal stripes! :) 
Also check out the web for cookie recipes to make tie-shaped cookies for dad!
Custom shirts: Dads bring in a white (or light-colored) shirt and decorate it with their child using fabric crayons. My husband wore his proudly for years! Remind crafters to include the date somewhere on the shirt.  (Idea from Linda Pannuto, Youth Services Librarian, Orion Township Public Library, Lake Orion, Mich.)
Fun & games: Make sock puppets, kites, or bean bag games.  Dad and the kids will enjoy them together even after they’ve left the library. (Idea from Laura Yanchick, Youth Services Manager, Joliet (Ill.) Public Library)
Another vote for kites: One poster suggested an easy kite plan at: Kids can decorate the kites with their dads and then fly them together afterwards. Prep time is reasonably minimal and all that’s needed is paper, twine, stapler, hole punch… supplies for decorating. (Idea from Rick Samuelson, Youth Services Librarian, Washington County (Oregon) Cooperative Library Services)
D Is for Dad Story Time: Vivian Milius shared a link to numerous father-friendly story time ideas available on her blog (  (Ideas from Vivian Milius, Madison Library District, Idaho)
Summer Reading Promo. ALSC-L subscriber Liz Gotauco, Head of Youth Services, Merrimack (N.H.) Public Library, recently requested ideas for promoting her summer reading program. She compiled and shared the suggestions she received and described one of her summer reading school visits.
About a month ago, I asked you (and some non-librarian friends too) to help me think of some children’s books that feature iconic items that could act as clues, for my summer reading promo.  The compiled list of responses is below. If it’s something you want to use in the future, here’s how I did it; I just came back from a visit today. I dressed up as an archaeologist (with one of the school’s language arts coordinators—it was fun to have a teacher involved), and brought in a big box that said “Artifacts – fragile.” We told students that we were reading explorers and we’d dug up clues to some books they loved. We asked students to raise their hand as they guessed the book titles.  We took out the clues/artifacts one by one and provided ad-lib for them.  For example, when we took out the candy beans from Harry Potter, we’d eat some and talk about the flavors; and we waved our hands before our noses when we pulled out the cheese from Wimpy Kid, etc.  As for the props themselves, I printed out large clip-art pictures of each item, mounted on foam board.
Below is the list Liz pulled from. She didn’t use all the ideas –she is using titles that the school’s language arts teacher indicates are the most recognizable to each specific class.
Chapter Books and Props
Captain Underpants—Giant jockey shorts, a cape
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory—Candy bar, stick of gum, TV remote, Golden Ticket
Harry Potter—Jelly Beans, map with “I solemnly swear I am up to no good”, golden snitch
Diary of a Wimpy Kid—Journal, moldy piece of cheese
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe—Turkish Delight, stuffed lion, lantern/lamp post
Wonder—Boba Fett Mask, Bloody Scream Mask, Star Wars® items 
Lemonade Wars series—Lemonade-related items, bell, money (“208” dollars), Valentine hearts
The Invention of Hugo Cabret—Picture of moon with rocket in the eye, pocket watch, wind-up toy (mouse)
Magic Treehouse—Four “riddles,” “Master Librarian” badge, wizard hat 
Wonderstruck—Wolf,  Museum of Natural History postcard, How to Teach Lip Reading book, locket
Tale of Despereaux—Spool of thread, soup, tiara
Picture Books and Props
Pigeon books—Hot dog, school bus, cookie, duckling
Pete the Cat—White shoes, red shoes, blue shoes, groovy buttons, cat
Polar Express—Bell, model train
Green Eggs and Ham—fox, box, mouse, house, green eggs, ham
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie—Cookie, glass of milk, straw, napkin
The Very Hungry Caterpillar—Apple, pear, strawberry, ice cream, pie, watermelon, cupcake, big green leaf (with bites)
Fancy Nancy—Blue duster, pen w/plume, Elton John glasses, How to Speak French book, feather boa
Stone Soup—Pot, rock
Lorax—Truffula tree, Thneed
Strega Nona—Pot, spaghetti, magic words
Martha Speaks—Alphabet soup, dog collar, treats

Getting Together

Oakland to Host 2014 ALSC Institute

ALSC’s 2014 National Institute will be held in Oakland, California. More than 300 children's librarians and educators will participate in this two and a half day event that features programming, keynotes, networking, and much more—all in one setting!

The Institute is one of the only conferences devoted solely to children's librarianship, literature, and technology and is designed for front-line youth library staff, children’s literature experts, education and library school faculty members, and others.

For information as it becomes available, visit We know budget planning happens early; if you have specific questions about price estimates, please contact Jenny Najduch, 800-545-2433, x4026 or jnajduch at

National Book Festival

The 13th annual Library of Congress National Book Festival will be held on Saturday, Sept. 21 and Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013, between 9th and 14th streets on the National Mall. The event, free and open to the public, will run from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday and from noon to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, rain or shine.

Renowned authors and poets Margaret Atwood, Marie Arana, Taylor Branch, Don DeLillo, Khaled Hosseini, Barbara Kingsolver, Brad Meltzer, Joyce Carol Oates, Katherine Paterson, and U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey will be among more than 100 writers speaking at the event. There also will be appearances by Katherine Applegate, Susan Cooper, Brian Floca, Jennifer and Matthew Holm, Cynthia Kadohata, Jon Klassen, Kirby Larson, Grace Lin, Rafael Lopez, Christopher Myers, Andrea and Brian Pinkney, Jon and Casey Scieszka, and many more.

Festival-goers can meet and hear firsthand from their favorite poets and authors, get books signed, have photos taken with PBS storybook characters, and participate in a variety of activities. An estimated 210,000 people attended in 2012.

Details about the festival can be found at The site offers a variety of features, and new material will be added as authors continue to join this year’s lineup.

The 13th Library of Congress National Book Festival is part of a larger Library of Congress “Celebration of the Book” in 2012 and 2013. This year’s celebration is focused on “Books That Shaped the World.

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Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Member News

Congratulations to Carole Fiore, Training & Library Consulting, Tallahassee, Fla., who recently received the Florida Library Association's Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognizes a librarian with a longstanding, distinguished record of professional achievements and accomplishments. Carole was cited for her career of more than 30 years that includes significant contributions to library services for youth in Florida and across the country. She has consulted with scores of libraries and mentored countless youth librarians and she continues to be a presenter and trainer in high demand for her expertise in early literacy.

Diana Garcia, recent San Jose State University SLIS graduate and Senior Library Clerk at Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library (Calif.), was awarded the PLA Innovations in Literacy Award for her afterschool reading intervention with children of recent immigrants. She was one of only eight librarians nationwide awarded the $1,000 scholarship for registration and travel to the PLA 2014 Conference in Indianapolis next March. She will also be recognized from the audience at the PLA President’s Program and Awards ceremony on Sunday, June 30, 1-2:30 p.m., during the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago. Kudos, Diana!

Betsy Diamant-Cohen is the recipient of the 2013 ASCLA (Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies) Leadership and Professional Achievement Award—-an annual honor presented to an ASCLA member exemplifying leadership and achievement. Betsy is a proven and trusted leader in the field of early literacy and is recognized as a prolific author, inspiring mentor and presenter, knowledgeable consultant and teacher, and creator and developer of the Mother Goose on the Loose (MGOL) program. Betsy will receive the award at the ASCLA/COSLA Reception, Saturday, June 29, 5:45-7:30 p.m. during the ALA Annual Conference. Congratulations, Betsy!

Congratulations to Allison Tran, Teen Services Librarian at the Mission Viejo (Calif.) Library. She recently won the ALSC Blog Header Design Contest for her “Professional and Playfulness" design. Tran’s winning design received the most votes in an ALSC Blog poll and it is now featured as the header on the ALSC Blog. She won of a certificate for an ALSC online course. Brian Hare ("Sharing and Collaborating"), Youth Services Manager, at the Cleveland Heights-University Heights (Ohio) Public Library and Joella Peterson ("Sky's the Limit"), Youth Services Librarian at the South Jordan (Utah) Library were runners-up. Both will receive certificates for ALSC webinars. The ALSC Blog hosted the contest to display the creativity and skill of ALSC members. Many thanks to all those who participated and to the more than 248 individuals who voted. To see the new header, please visit:

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Julie Dietzel-Glair'Books in Motion: Connecting Preschoolers with Books through Art, Games, Movement, Music, Playacting, and Props was published by Neal-Schuman in April. Books in Motion demonstrates how to use children’s books to engage preschool-age children through movement--shaking up your storytime, helping children stay healthy, and encouraging a lifelong love of reading. Julie is a freelance writer and library consultant in Baltimore.

Julie Cummins has a new book coming out July 23. Flying Solo: How Ruth Elder Soared into America's Heart was illustrated by Malene Laugesen, and published by Roaring Brook. It's the story of an early aviatrix attempting to be the first female to fly across the Atlantic. She didn't make it, due to plane trouble, but she went on to enjoy fame and success. Elder chased her dreams with grit and determination and became America's Sweetheart.

Martha Simpson's [Stratford (Conn.) Library Association] first picture book, What NOT to Give Your Mom on Mother's Day, illustrated by Jana Christy, was published in April by Amazon Children's Publishing. A little boy gives readers his advice on things that would not be welcome presents, unless your mother happens to be a bird, a spider, a pig, an aardvark, or a bat.

Kristen Remenar is thrilled that soon on her library shelves she’ll see her first picture book, To See or Not To See. Half of Groundhog’s friends want him to see his shadow on February 2 so that winter will last six more weeks; the other half want an early spring. Find out if Groundhog will see, or not see, his shadow in 2015, when the book will be published by Charlesbridge.  Kristen is a youth services librarian at the Orion Township (Mich.) Public Library. Her husband, author/illustrator Matt Faulkner, will create the art for her first book.

Congratulations to Pamela Mann, children's services coordinator, Morgan County (W.Va.) Public Library, and Angela Reynolds, head of youth services, Annapolis Valley Regional Library, Bridgetown, Nova Scotia. They are the recipients of a scholarship, sponsored by ALSC and Friends of ALSC, to attend the 2013 ALSC Preconference, A Wild Ride: 75 Years of the Caldecott Medal. Mann and Reynolds were chosen from a pool of more than 25 well-qualified applicants. Selection criteria included commitment to children’s library services and to ALSC; leadership qualities as displayed through library and community involvement; need for professional development and desired outcome for attending the ALSC Preconference; financial need for scholarship, personally and professionally; and well-roundedness of the applicant. Applications were reviewed by an ALSC Board sub-committee. For further details about the recipients, see the press release at

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. Over the last year, the Friends of ALSC have supported professional development for members by giving more than $2,500 in scholarships for ALSC programming, including the 2012 National Institute and the 2013 Preconference.

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Members Win Banquet Tickets, Online Learning. The Membership Committee recently announced the winners in its 2013 Membership Needs Assessment Survey contest. More than 300 ALSC members took part in the survey. All those who completed the survey and entered their ALA ID number were eligible for a drawing to win a ticket to the 2013 Newbery-Caldecott-Wilder Banquet or an ALSC online learning opportunity. The sixteen winners chosen at random were:

Becki Bishop
Stephanie Conrad
Amber Creger
Bradley Debrick
Roxy Ekstrom
Ayson Feldman-Piltch
Barbara Genco
Lolly Gepson
Maureen Hartman
Leslie Kanno
Amy Koester
Susan Kusel
Tess Prendergast
Stephanie Smallwood
Sylvia Vardell
Janet Weber  

Congrats to our winners and many thanks to all those who took part in the survey.

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Upcoming ALSC Webinars

Summer reading makes for busy libraries during the warm months. To support the professional development of librarians even during the busiest times, ALSC delivers quality webinars all summer long. Check out these hour-long webinar offerings, presented at various times to accommodate any schedule.

For information on fees,registration, and content, visit


Best Practices for Apps in Storytime
Wednesday, June 19, Noon - 1 PM CT

The Power of Play for Early Childhood Learning in Your Library
Tuesday, June 25, 12 - 1 PM CT


Best Practices for Apps in Storytime
Wednesday, July 10, 1 -2 PM CT

The Power of Play for Early Childhood Learning in Your Library
Wednesday, July 17, 11 AM - 12 PM CT

Sensory Storytime: Preschool Programming That Makes Sense for Kids with Autism
Tuesday, July 23, 2 PM - 3 PM CT

Summer Science @your Library®
Wednesday, July 24, 1 - 2 PM CT


Best Practices for Apps in Storytime
Wednesday, August 7, 2013, Noon - 1 PM CT

The Power of Play for Early Childhood Learning in Your Library
Thursday, August 15, 12 - 1 PM CT

So You Want to Genre-fy your Library...and More  
Monday, August 26, 1 - 2 PM CT

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Online Courses - Join Us for Summer School

Registration is now open for all ALSC online courses. Classes begin Monday, July 15, 2013. Courses are designed to fit the needs of working professionals and are taught by experienced librarians and academics. For further details, visit

The Caldecott Medal: Understanding Distinguished Art in Picture Books (six weeks)
Children with Disabilities in the Library (six weeks, three CEUs)
Getting to the Core: Librarians and Common Core State Standards (six weeks)
Integrating New Technologies into Your Collections (four weeks) Out of this World Youth Programming (six weeks, 1.8 CEUs)
Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Programs Made Easy (four weeks, 1.2 CEUs)

Summer Reading List

Research shows that increased summer reading reduces summer learning loss. Also, the amount and quality of students’ access to reading materials correlates to the amount of reading they do, which in turn is a determinant of reading achievement. To combat the "summer slide" and support access to quality reading, ALSC has created three Summer Reading book lists, which feature recommended book titles for readers in kindergarten through 8th grade. These book lists, available at, include a diverse group of fun and enjoyable books, both classic and contemporary, to keep children interested in reading throughout the summer. The downloadable PDFs also allow space where librarians can customize with summer hours and programs.  

The titles were selected, compiled, and annotated by members of the ALSC Quicklists Consulting Committee and School-Age Programs and Services Committee, through a Carnegie Whitney Grant funded by the ALA Publishing Committee.

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2014 ALSC Professional Awards

ALSC’s professional awards and grants recognize outstanding library service to children through creative programming ideas and dedication to librarianship. Application openings and submission deadlines for the various awards are staggered. Please note appropriate dates and deadlines on each award description below.
Distinguished Service Award. The DSA honors an individual member who has made significant contributions to and had an impact on, library services to children and ALSC. The recipient receives $1,000 and an engraved pin at the ALSC Membership Meeting during the ALA Annual Conference. Nominations are now available and submissions are due by December 1. To access the online nomination form or to download a paper nomination form, visit
Louise Seaman Bechtel Fellowship. This award provides a $4,000 stipend to allow a qualified children’s librarian to spend a month or more reading at the University of Florida’s Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, which contains a special collection of 85,000 volumes of children’s literature published mostly before 1950. Applications open July 1 and submissions are due October 1. 
Light the Way Grant. This $3,000 grant is sponsored by Candlewick Press in honor of author Kate DiCamillo and the themes represented in her books. The grant is awarded to a library with exceptional outreach to underserved populations in efforts to help them continue their service. Applications open July 1 and submissions are due October 1. 
Penguin Young Readers Group Award. This award provides a $600 stipend, provided by Penguin Young Readers Group, for up to four winners to attend their first ALA Annual Conference. Applicants must have fewer than ten years of experience as a children’s librarian and work directly with children. Applications open July 1 and submissions are due October 1.
ALSC Baker & Taylor Summer Reading Grant. This $3,000 grant provides financial assistance to a public library for developing an outstanding summer reading program for children. Applications open August 1 and submissions are due November 1. 
Maureen Hayes Award. This $4,000 award was established with funding from Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, in honor of Maureen Hayes, to bring together children and nationally recognized authors/illustrators by funding an author/illustrator visit to a school or public library that has not before had the opportunity to host one. Applications open August 1 and submissions are due November 1.
Bookapalooza! Each year the ALSC office receives almost 3,000 newly published books, videos, audiobooks, and recordings from children’s trade publishers for award and notables consideration. At the end of the year, after the awards have been given out, ALSC selects three libraries to receive a Bookapalooza collection of these materials (estimated to be worth $10,000 each) to be used in a way that creatively enhances their library service to children and families. Applications open October 1 and submissions are due February 1.
For more information about each award, visit

Read! Build! Play! Summer Reading List

As an extension of the Read! Build! Play! initiative ALSC and LEGO® DUPLO® have teamed up to create the LEGO® DUPLO® Read! Build! Play! 2013 Summer Reading Lists. One list features five titles for children ages 1-3, and the other, five titles for ages 3-5, selected and annotated by members of the ALSC Early Childhood Programs and Services Committee. Each free, downloadable list includes instructions for fun, inspirational LEGO® DUPLO® building projects and activity suggestions for each book. These book lists, plus a Parent Activity Guide, are at:  

Also be sure to visit ALSC’s Importance of Play webpage ( to download the free Librarian Toolkit and read through The Importance of Play, Particularly Constructive Play, in Public Library Programming white paper, written by Sue McCleaf Nespeca and adopted by the ALSC Board of Directors on in September 2012.

ALSC Scholarship Winners Announced

Six scholarship recipients have been chosen for the 2012-2013 academic year.

Four winners were awarded the Bound to Stay Bound Books Scholarship, made possible by Bound to Stay Bound Books, Inc. They are: Ashley L. Dean, Poquoson, Va.; Marianne Dolce, Deltona, Fla.; Rebecca Lynn Dunn, Lawrence, Kan., and Casey Marie Fox, Knoxville, Tenn. Each recipient receives $7,000 in scholarship aid for the academic year.

Two winners were awarded the Frederic G. Melcher Scholarship, made possible by contributions from librarians, professionals, and others associated with the field of children’s literature. The following recipients each receive $6,000 in scholarship aid: Tina Suzanne Groff, Pipe Creek, Texas, and Ginger Michelle Kirchmyer, Chattanooga, Tenn.

Online Education Proposals  

Have an idea for an ALSC webinar or online course? The ALSC Education Committee is adding to ALSC’s online course and webinar offerings. If you are interested in teaching a course or webinar, please fill out the online education proposal form found at

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Needs Assessment Survey Completed  

In April, the ALSC Membership Committee performed its membership needs assessment survey. The committee identified three objectives of the survey: 1) determine how the division can best serve its members; 2) find out how the organization is positioned in regards to member awareness; and 3) solicit ideas for future actions/programs. The survey closed April 28, 2013, and the committee will be analyzing results at the 2013 ALA Annual Conference. Going forward, the survey will be performed on a biennial basis.

Field Notes

Mora Award Applications Now Being Accepted

REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-speaking, invites applications for the 2013 Mora Award, which is presented annually to the most exemplary celebration of El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day), also known as Día. Libraries, schools, educational institutions, and other youth-serving organizations that plan and implement Día programs in 2013 are eligible to submit an application by August 15, 2013. The award consists of a $1,000 stipend and a plaque to be displayed in a public area by the winning institution(s).

New Award on the Block

Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy (, an advisory group to the Colorado State Library, announced the inaugural year of the CLEL Bell Picture Book Awards, a new children's literature award created to recognize picture books that provide excellent support of early literacy development in young children. The first CLEL Bell Awards will be announced February 5, 2014, one title in each of five categories representing an early literacy practice: Read, Write, Sing, Talk, and Play. For more information on the awards, visit:

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Another One for the Record Books?

Jumpstart’s premiere national campaign, Read for the Record, presented in partnership with the Pearson Foundation, is one time of the year when millions of individuals come together to celebrate literacy and support early childhood education. On October 3, 2013, people across the country will read the children’s book Otis by Loren Long, in support of Jumpstart’s mission to work towards the day when every child in America enters kindergarten prepared to succeed. Will you be among the readers? Learn more about the campaign at In 2012, 2.3 million people participated in Jumpstart’s Read for the Record, devouring Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad by David Soman and Jacky Davis.

Peace, Love, and Children's Books

Jane Addams Children's Book Awards.  These awards are given annually to the children's books published the preceding year that effectively promote the cause of peace, social justice, world community, and the equality of the sexes and all races as well as meeting conventional standards for excellence. The awards are administered by the Jane Addams Peace Association. The 2013 winners are:

Each Kindness, written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis, and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin, is the winner in the Books for Younger Children Category. We’ve Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March, written by Cynthia Levinson and published by Peachtree Publishers, is the winner in the Books for Older Children category.

Two books were named Honor Books in the Books for Younger Children category: Dolores Huerta: A Hero to Migrant Workers, written by Sarah Warren, illustrated by Robert Casilla, and published by Marshall Cavendish Children; and We March, written and illustrated by Shane W. Evans, and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter imprint of Macmillan.

Two books were named Honor Books in the Older Children category: Marching to the Mountaintop: How Poverty, Labor Fights and Civil Rights Set the Stage for Martin Luther King Jr’s Final Hours, written by Ann Bausum and published by National Geographic; and Temple Grandin: How the Girl Who Loved Cows Embraced Autism and Changed the World by Sy Montgomery, published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children.

Hans Christian Andersen Award.  The Andersen Award is the highest international distinction given to authors and illustrators of children's books. Given every other year by the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), the award recognizes lifelong achievement and is given to an author and an illustrator whose complete works have made an important, lasting contribution to children's literature.

Award nominees are submitted by the National Sections of IBBY. For the 2014 awards, 29 authors and 31 illustrators have been nominated from 34 countries. The U.S. nominees are author Jacqueline Woodson and illustrator Bryan Collier. An awards jury will hold meetings in March 2014, and a shortlist will be disseminated immediately following. Winners will be announced at an IBBY press conference at the Bologna Children's Book Fair on Monday, March 24, 2014. For more information, visit

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Children’s Choice Book Awards. The Children’s Book Council and Every Child a Reader announced the winners of the sixth annual Children’s Choice Book Awards (CCBAs) in May. The winners are:


Nighttime Ninja by Barbara DaCosta, illustrated by Ed Young (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)

Grades 3-4

Bad Kitty for President by Nick Bruel (Roaring Brook/Macmillan)

Grades 5-6

Dork Diaries 4: Tales from a Not-So-Graceful Ice Princess by Rachel Renée Russell (Aladdin/Simon & Schuster)

Teen Book of the Year

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Dutton/Penguin)

Author of the Year

Jeff Kinney for Diary of a Wimpy Kid 7: The Third Wheel (Amulet Books/Abrams)

Illustrator of the Year

Robin Preiss Glasser for Fancy Nancy and the Mermaid Ballet (HarperCollins Children’s Books)

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New Poet Laureate

The Poetry Foundation announced that poet Kenn Nesbitt will serve as the next Children’s Poet Laureate: Consultant in Children’s Poetry to the Poetry Foundation. In awarding the $25,000 cash prize and two-year title, the foundation aims to raise awareness that children have a natural receptivity to poetry and are its most appreciative audience, especially when poems are written specifically for them.

Nesbitt, 51, is the author of numerous books of poetry for children, including The Tighty-Whitey Spider (2010), My Hippo Has the Hiccups (2009), and Revenge of the Lunch Ladies (2007). His books abound with humorous and silly situations, and his poems have appeared in hundreds of anthologies, magazines, and textbooks worldwide.

Book Grants Available

The Libri Foundation, a non-profit organization that donates new, quality, hardcover children's books to small, rural public libraries throughout the United States, is currently accepting applications for its 2013 Books for Children grants. Application and guidelines are at The submission deadline is August 15, 2013.

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