ALSConnect, March 2009, Vol. 7, no. 1

***Attn: This is an ARCHIVE page. Web links on this page may no longer work.***

Officially Speaking

It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times

I think this quote from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens is a metaphor for the mood of ALSC membership at this time. Each year, ALSC approaches the Midwinter Meeting as “the best of times.” It’s when the association’s youth media awards are announced, and the nation waits in anticipation of the Monday morning announcements. This year, ALSC also experienced “the worst of times.” At the end of the conference, Kate McClelland, ALSC president-elect, and Kathy Krasniewicz, chair of the Notable Children’s Videos Committee, were killed in a traffic accident in route to the Denver airport. So, at the dawn of our celebrations, we are also in mourning. Kate and Kathy loved ALSC, cherished their colleagues, and treasured the young patrons they served at the Perrot Memorial Library in Old Greenwich, Conn. Story defined their lives, and it is through story that they will be remembered.

This has been a successful year for ALSC:

  • A recent membership report revealed that we are one of three ALA divisions that grew in membership last year.
  • The National Institute in Salt Lake City recorded higher numbers of registrants over past Institutes.
  • The online courses are filled, and plans are underway to design new courses of interest to our members.
  • The Children and Technology Committee has regularly scheduled chats, and invites members to participate.
  • The Quicklists Committee stays active and has provided lists of books for Oprah’s Summer Reading List for Kids, the We the People Project sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, and numerous other magazines and organizations interested in children’s literacy.
  • The Quicklists and Great Web Sites for Kids Committees have prepared lists of books and Web sites to support the Civil Rights theme of the Charlemae Rollins President’s Program at annual conference.
  • Born to Read, Every Child Ready to Read, Kids! @ your library® Campaign, and Día are among the many public awareness and outreach services of ALSC that continue to receive high accolades from librarians and library users across the nation.
  • As always, the youth media awards have ignited interest from the media. It’s good that so many newspapers, television and radio news, and talk shows care so much about these awards.
  • The Notable Committees (books, videos, audio recordings) once again compiled stellar lists of materials for librarians, teachers, and parents who want guidance as they purchase materials for children.
  • Three new, deserving Bookapalooza sites were chosen.
  • Four librarians were granted the 2009 Penguin Young Readers Group Award, and will be attending their first ALA conference in July in Chicago.
  • Walter Dean Myers will deliver the May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture at the Children's Defense Fund Haley Farm Clinton, Tennessee, near Knoxville, in April.
  • The ALSC leadership will once again participate in Library Legislative Day, coordinated by the ALA Washington Office, in May.
  • Finally, ALSC has a great lineup of programs for annual. Watch for descriptions of these special events at Scales, ALSC President

Councilor News - Midwinter 2009

Overall attendance was down at this year's Midwinter Meeting with 10,220 attending in Denver compared to 13,601 in Philadelphia in 2008, in part because Denver does not have as many nearby metropolitan areas as Philadelphia does. Attending members and some non-attending members attributed the drop in attendance to reduced library budgets and the general weak economy.

ALA committees and task forces report to ALA Council. Some committees report their activities and key accomplishments, while others bring resolutions for Council to consider. In this column, I will mention a few that are of particular concern for ALSC members, but all Council actions can be found at:

Freedom to Read Foundation President Judith Platt reported that the FTRF was finally successful in overturning the Child Online Protection Act (COPA), which criminalized the transmission of materials considered to be “harmful to minors” via the Internet if those materials could be accessed by minors.

The Library Advocacy Committee announced the development of tool kits to assist library advocates with talking points and convincing arguments:

The Presidential Task Force on Electronic Member Participation (TFOEMP) had submitted its thorough report to Council prior to Midwinter, but this was Council's first face-to-face discussion of the recommendations. Some key concerns regard the association’s “Open Meeting” policy and the fact that some types of electronic participation might restrict this. There is a general consensus that electronic participation has enabled some members to participate in the work of the association without attending conference, and this has been beneficial to ALA. However, some of the technology that would make ALA more transparent is currently very expensive, a major obstacle in the current economic environment. Council passed many of the task force's recommendations, referred some to the Executive Board for further analysis, and will no doubt be discussing the issue at future Council sessions.—Linda Perkins, ALSC Councilor

Grassroots Advocacy

The ALA Washington Office (WO) staff has continued to do an excellent job of sharing library issues with our elected officials and providing resources for library supporters. The office staff cannot do this alone. It will be especially critical this year that our members and supporters use the assistance of the WO as we tell our story to our elected officials. I encourage each of you to make a visit to the WO Web site ( to see what has been done on our behalf these past few weeks.

The power of many voices was seen during the recent Midwinter Meeting concerning the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008. After many phone calls and emails, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released an announcement to the Federal Register staying implementation of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) until February 10, 2010. Although this grassroots effort was successful, we must remain vigilant in these efforts to get the library message out to both the Commission and elected officials.

When the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was up for vote in the Senate, Amendment 501 which could have stripped broadband funding was attached. The WO sent out a call for library supporters to once again contact elected officials, and again our calls and emails were instrumental in the defeat of this amendment and funding was protected.

There are many issues facing libraries today that impact services to children and young people. A document was developed and presented to the transition team of President Obama prior to his inauguration outlining the ALA position on matters of importance to our association ( One of the items mentioned in the document of particular interest to ALSC is the establishment of a national Early Learning Council. The recent Head Start reauthorization also authorizes the creation of state Early Learning Councils. There are a number of positions mandated on these councils and a number of positions that can be appointed at a governor's discretion. Librarians are not among the positions mandated, so it's going to be our job to advocate with the governors for an Early Learning Council to be established in each state and for a librarian to be appointed to these councils.

The Library Services and Technology Act, federal funding for libraries, is up for reauthorization in 2009. These funds flow directly to state libraries to benefit local libraries. Many of the programs offered impact youth services. As we have seen, grassroots efforts are successful and the WO offers much assistance for library supporters. Each person's voice counts with his elected officials. You can access tips for contacting your elected officials and concise messages that tell library stories at the WO Web site:

The joint youth legislative program at annual conference will feature the advocacy "guru" Stephanie Vance. I encourage you to attend and learn new ways to get your message across to your elected officials.

National Library Legislative Day is scheduled for May 11 and 12 in Washington, D.C. If you want to attend, check with your state library to see if there is a delegation going from your state. If you are unable to go to Washington, D.C., participate virtually and encourage your supporters to participate virtually. You can also visit the local offices of your federal officials.--Kathy Toon, Chair, ALSC Legislation Committee

ALSC Supporters

Thank you to all of our latest contributors to the Friends of ALSC, the Pura Belpré Award Endowment Fund, and the Día initiative. To learn how you can contribute, visit and click on "About ALSC--Contact ALSC--Donate to ALSC” on the left-hand navigation menu.

Belpré Endowment

Elise DeGuiseppi (in honor of Caroline Ward, 2009 Notable Children's Books Committee Chair)
Eliza Dresang (in honor of Caroline Ward, 2009 Notable Children's Books Committee Chair)
Marie Orlando (in honor of Caroline Ward, 2009 Notable Children's Books Committee Chair)
Sally Anne Thompson (in honor of Caroline Ward, 2009 Notable Children's Books Committee Chair)

El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children's Day/Book Day)

Roberta Long

Friends of ALSC

Gold Circle

Mary Burkey
Dudley Carlson

Silver Circle

Elizabeth Gordon
Leslie Molnar
Judy Zuckerman

Notables' Circle

Marilyn Ackerman
Joan Atkinson
Rita Auerbach
Rosanne Cerny
Mary Fellows
Barbara Genco
Maria Gentle
Lillian Gerhardt
Steven Herb
Amy Kellman
Ginny Moore Kruse
Phyllis Mattill
Claudette McLinn
Andrew Medlar
Pat Mora
Sue McCleaf Nespeca
Jan Moltzan
Kathleen Odean
Betsy Orsburn
Pat Scales
Susan Veltfort
Junko Yokota & William Teale

Friends' Circle

Alan Bern
Mary Rinato Berman
Lisa Dennis
Marie-Helene Dere
Lolly Gepson
Mary Ginnane
Elizabeth Jackson
Diane Janoff
Marilyn Matthews
Sharon McQueen
Ed Spicer
Gretchen Wronka

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Bright Ideas

Community Partners Make Beautiful Music Together

The first “Musical Instrument Petting Zoo” struck a chord with 120 budding musicians at the Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library, when kids had the opportunity to touch, feel, and experiment with four instruments under the guidance of professional musicians.

This creative, hands-on program was the brainchild of Kids’ World librarians, who partnered with the Metropolis School of Performing Arts, also in Arlington Heights, to increase kids’ awareness of and exposure to classical music and music education.

Four teachers conducted the free, 2 ½ hour program held on a Saturday morning during Christmas break. Each teacher set up in one corner of the library’s largest meeting room, which was divided by a folding wall. Participants could easily walk to the four instruments, but the sound from each did not interfere with one another.

Both the guitarist and the violinist brought student-sized instruments. The pianist used the piano owned by the library. The percussionist brought his entire drum set, complete with bass, toms, snare drums, and cymbals.

The audience ranged from very young children, who had fun making sounds on the instruments, to middle-school children, including boys who came mainly for the drums and guitars but later, also waited their turn for the violin and piano.

The percussion teacher showed how drums are constructed and why various cymbals make different sounds. In working with the children, he would first tap out a rhythm that he would then have the child copy. He would start out with something very simple, then, depending on the age of the child, would offer more difficult rhythms.

The pianist had children sit at the piano and depending on their age, would either teach a simple tune or how to properly finger the keys. She also had the children stand around the open piano and watch the hammers and strings, so they got an idea how the piano and its pedals actually work to make music.

The guitarist taught each child how to hold the instrument correctly. He demonstrated various chords and melodies, or just let the child strum the guitar.

The violinist had one of the more popular instruments. The children lined up and were shown how to hold the instrument and the bow, and were given the opportunity to play a familiar children’s song.

"We were greatly impressed by the teachers, who were so patient and really focused on each child, making sure each had a good hands-on experience," says Lynne Priest, one of the librarians coordinating the partnership event.

As is often the case, these community partners proved to make “beautiful music” together by using their expertise to serve mutual customers in the community. “It was an amazing workshop,” says Kristen Jacobson, Outreach Manager, Metropolis School of the Performing Arts. “By partnering with the Arlington Heights Library to present the Musical Instrument Petting Zoo, we were able to introduce quality performing arts education to connect our community, and present an opportunity for the arts to be part of kids’ everyday experiences at the library.”—Deb Whisler, Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library

Education Students Pick Their Winners

Each semester, Jen Knisely, children's services director of the Altoona (Penn.) Area Public Library, and Kirstin Bratt, assistant professor of language arts and literacy at Penn State Altoona, co-host an awards ceremony honoring children's literature. Before the ceremony, Kirstin and her students, pre-service teachers in the elementary education program, create their own award categories, circulate calls for nominations, and then nominate books for one another. Once nominations are complete, they each decide upon a winning book, create an award certificate, and try to keep their secret until the ceremony. The ceremony is held at the public library auditorium: local literacy workers are invited to attend, including librarians, teachers, school administrators, home-schooling parents, and community workers. After the ceremony, award certificates and congratulatory letters are sent off to the winning authors. A recent ceremony was held on October 30, 2008.

A host of original awards were given at the ceremony. An award category to honor a local illustrator was instituted by pre-service teacher Liane Braman, and the winner of her award, Joe Servello, illustrator of The World Is Big, and I’m So Small (Crown, 1986), was on hand to receive it and talk to the pre-service teachers about his work. As he spoke about his creative process, he also told us some of the locations around our town that inspired his illustrations.

Other awards included: The Different Dragon, by Jennifer Bryan & Danamarie Hosler (Two Lives, 2006), for the "Non-Traditional Families" award; When Randolph Turned Rotten, by Charise Mericle Harper (Knopf, 2007), for the "Bestest Buddies" award; and That Bothered Kate, by Sally Noll (Greenwillow, 1991), for the "Sisters" award; Many other awards were announced that day; all nominees and award-winners can be seen at Goodreads ( by logging in and asking to join the group "Children's Literature Awards."--Kirstin Bratt, Penn State Altoona

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Trash Transformed--The Art of Junk

Last fall Multnomah County Library’s School Corps launched a new series of programs, Story Scouts – Art, to share with Schools Uniting Neighborhoods (SUN) Community Schools students. (Within Multnomah County’s SUN Service System, SUN Community Schools are the school-based service delivery sites for a comprehensive set of services including educational, enrichment, recreational, social, and health services.) Each session starts with a picture book that relates to the day’s theme and moves to a creative project emphasizing different art techniques, such as printmaking, collage, sculpture, quilting, rubbings, mosaics, and drawing. The series highlights the art-making process rather than the creation of an end product. Many of the art supplies are recycled or recyclable materials: styrofoam trays are used for block prints, paper scraps from the library’s print shop end up in collages, bean seeds form mosaics, and bottle caps transform into sculpture.

A favorite is “Art Out of Junk”--a program in which students make things out of trash. Creativity, artistry, and inventiveness rule: one student made a camera out of cardboard, with progressively smaller bottle caps as the telephoto lens; another transformed a clamp and a tongue depressor into an airplane. Detergent bottle caps become baskets, hats, and flower pots. “Can we pleeeeze do this again next time?” kids beg at the end of class, clutching their creations, excited about the possibilities of trash transformed by imagination. To learn more, visit Camper, School Corps, Multnomah County Library, Portland, Ore.

Celebrate Earth Day in April with Curious George

PBS has created easy-to-use earth science activities from Curious George for programming with preK—2 children. Consider using them as we celebrate Earth Day nationwide on Wednesday, April 22. Offering hands-on science in libraries broadens the definition of what libraries do and helps keep us relevant. Meanwhile, George has the capacity to charm children and adults alike and is sure to be a draw.

The Curious George earth science activities can be found online at The science investigations are all inquiry-based with the goal of encouraging children to explore, be observant, ask questions, and predict outcomes. At appropriately-named “Curiosity Centers,” children will make their own discoveries about recycling, wind, water drops, and the properties of soil and sand. Book recommendations are offered as well as simple materials lists, learning goals, and leader notes. A related episode from Curious George, which might help introduce the topic of earth science to children, can be ordered for free by contacting

Importantly, PBS also needs to hear whether librarians value receiving such materials. A number of librarians completing a brief online survey at will win 25-book sets of Curious George Flies a Kite to distribute to children.--Gay Mohrbacher, WGBH/Boston's Public Television

Presidential Plates

Illinois Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White and the Illinois Library Association (ILA) announced the availability of an official Barack Obama Illinois license plate during the Chicago Auto Show in February.

The special event license plates, which read “Illinois Salutes President Barack Obama,” are unique commemorative plates to be displayed on Illinois vehicles for sixty days, beginning February 17 and ending April 17, 2009. After this date, the Obama license plate will be available for purchase to everyone nationwide to add to their Obama collections. The plates are available for purchase at for $50 a pair. Proceeds will help support ILA’s activities including iREAD, the summer reading program for Illinois youth.

The election of President Obama represents an historic moment for Illinois. These plates commemorate and celebrate the election of the nation’s first African-American president. The proceeds will benefit libraries, referred to by Obama as “our windows to a larger world” in his 2005 keynote address at the opening general session of the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago.

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ALSC Voices

Randall Enos
Youth Services Consultant
Ramapo Catskill Library System, Middletown, New York 
ALSC membership: 28 years
Where did you attend library school?
Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas

What attracted you to library service to children?
I’ve always had an affinity for children, but I didn’t set out to be a children’s librarian.  My first library job was as an outreach librarian, but the children and I just gravitated towards each other and I have been in children’s and teen services ever since.
Why did you join ALSC?
I was introduced to ALA as a library school student representing my school at the ALA Conference in 1974.  Attending that conference opened me up to the world of ALA and the importance of the organization.  I was hooked.  When I got into children’s services, I wanted to keep on top of new trends and ideas, which is especially important in my current job, so of course I joined ALSC. 
What to you is the biggest reward of being a children's librarian?
I enjoy the literature and being part of the whole children’s book culture.  I also enjoy the people associated with youth services, not only in my library system and in New York State, but across the country.  It seems to be getting harder and harder to travel and sometimes by the time I arrive at ALA conferences I’m feeling a little grumpy, but that immediately disappears when I come into contact with my ALSC/ALA buddies!
What is your favorite job responsibility?
I like putting together the summer reading program.  It is my responsibility to coordinate the planning efforts and help the youth librarians get their programs launched.  It really does take a village (and then some) to stage a successful summer program.  Part of the pleasure that I derive is seeing how the youth librarians take the theme, make it their own, and come up with programs that dazzle their young patrons.

Do you have any advice or a helpful tip for library school students or new librarians just starting out?
Obsess early and often (I think that came from former ALSC President Barbara Genco), love what you do and with whom you’re doing it, and always be professional.
What is the most popular children's program at your library?
At our system we provide continuing education programs for staff from our member libraries.  The most popular program with the best attendance is our performers’ showcase.  We invite a dozen performers to come and give them 15 minutes to show us what they have to offer.  The librarians find it helpful to see what the performers are like before they hire them for their programs.  There is often quite a variety of responses to the performers, so it is good that they get to see them firsthand.
What is your favorite children's book out this year so far?
I haven’t read many 2009 books (I’m still trying to get through 2008), but so far I’ve enjoyed A Mighty Fine Time Machine by Suzanne Bloom, published by Boyds Mills Press.  The ending will not only warm the hearts of librarians everywhere, but also, some of us will see it as the picture book version of how we became librarians. 

What are your hobbies?
I love to view, experience, appreciate anything to do with architecture.  In addition, I enjoy being outside whether it’s hiking, gardening, or playing with my dogs.  My guilty pleasure is being a couch potato in front of the TV.
What three words best describe you?
Optimistic, practical, comfortable

Hear Ye! Hear Ye!

Member News

Rose V. Treviño's new book, Read Me a Rhyme in Spanish and English, is available from ALA Editions. This book includes programming ideas for librarians who have bilingual patrons and wish to present reading programs for children for whom Spanish is the spoken language at home. The program material presented originates from Latin culture, engaging those patrons for whom the nursery rhymes are new, as well as older children and parents for whom the rhymes are old favorites.

Longtime ALSC members Betsy Diamant-Cohen and Selma Levi have co-authored Booktalking Bonanza: Ten Ready-to-Use Multimedia Sessions for the Busy Librarian (ALA, 2008). They will present material from the book in a lively and interactive format on Sunday, July 12, 1-3:30 p.m. during ALA in Chicago.

Penny Peck’s new book, Crash Course in Storytime Fundamentals (Libraries Unlimited, 2009), is a how-to guide for those new to presenting storytime and also those who want to try a new idea. The book is based on materials designed and used by Peck in workshops.

Susan Patron's new book, Lucky Breaks (Atheneum/Ginee Seo), is a sequel to The Higher Power of Lucky (Atheneum/Richard Jackson, 2006), and is being published this month. It is the second novel in the "Lucky/Hard Pan" trilogy.

The Tenth Book of Junior Authors and Illustrators (H.W. Wilson, 2008), edited by Connie C. Rockman, contains nearly 200 profiles, with an all-new geographical index of places associated with each author or illustrator.

ALSC Student Sessions Offer Free Workshops at Your Fingertips

As a student with a busy schedule, you can’t always make it to workshops and conferences—that’s why ALSC is bringing the professionals to you! ALSC Student Sessions offer members a way to interact and learn about hot library topics virtually through free one-hour workshops in OPAL (Online Programming for All Libraries). Although the sessions were made with students in mind, all who are interested are welcome to attend. For more information about ALSC Student Sessions or OPAL, visit:

Upcoming sessions include: How I Got My First Library Job: Tips from Library Directors, on Thursday, March 19, 5 p.m. CST; and Library 2.0: Technology in Children’s Services, Wednesday, May 6, 7 p.m. CST.

Questions? Contact Jenny Najduch, ALSC marketing specialist, at or (312) 280-4026.

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Register for Complimentary Día Brochures!

Join colleagues across the country as libraries nationwide celebrate El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day). Held annually on April 30, Día promotes the importance of advocating literacy for every child, regardless of linguistic and cultural background. Through Día celebrations, libraries showcase their multicultural programs and services. While supplies last, ALSC is providing up to 200 complimentary bilingual (English/Spanish) brochures, with recommended book lists and tips on how to encourage children to read, to each library that registers its Día event at: The registry of events is searchable by state. Please feel free to contact us at

One for the money...

Two for the show,
Three to get ready,
And four to go!

Do you need money to get your committee’s show ready to go? The ALSC Budget Committee wants you to know that there is $1500 in our Children's Library Services Endowment that is available to support the work of your committee.

Projects that would make good candidates are those that tie in with ALSC priorities as outlined in the Strategic Plan (available online at; click on "About ALSC," then "ALSC Strategic Plan" in the list of links on the left) and that are largely sustainable by your committee without requiring extensive ALSC staff time.

If your committee is interested in taking advantage of this money, please complete a Special Funds Application (Form M, which is available in the Division Leadership Manual, also online) and submit it to the Budget Committee, c/o chair Andrew Medlar, Chicago Public Library, at by April 15, 2009.

One large project or a number of smaller ones may be selected for this budget cycle and the committee(s) with project(s) selected for funding will be notified prior to Annual Conference in July, and the money will then need to be spent by August 31, 2010.

If your committee has any questions, don’t hesitate to contact Andrew.

Key Dates:

  • April 15, 2009: Form M due to Budget Committee
  • July 1, 2009: Committee(s) with funded project(s) informed
  • August 31, 2010: Money must be spent

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Week of the Young Child

April 19-25, 2009 is designated as the Week of the Young Child (WOYC) - so get ready now! The Liaisons with National Organizations Serving Children and Youth Committee (LNOSCY) encourages you to contact child care centers in your area to invite them to display children’s art work in your library throughout April. Bulletin boards, blank walls, even shelf ends can provide attractive display space.

This project can provide terrific photo opportunities for families and the media.

  • Begin with a simple phone call and follow-up with a letter.
  • Ask for child-created work only (no color-sheets or crafts from patterns); maybe children’s impressions after hearing a favorite story.
  • Prepare a letter to send home with children inviting parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles to the library through the month of April.
  • If art work has no "frame," back each piece with colored construction paper.
  • Identify the child care facility providing the display.
  • Take pictures of families visiting to view the display and submit a favorite photo to Linda Mays at lmays at (She will fax a photo-release form to you.)
  • In addition to highlighting the importance of early education, this activity provides a terrific opportunity to attract caregivers and families of young children into your library.

Happy Anniversary CSK Awards

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards Web site has been rebuilt in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the awards. Regular updates are being made to the site, including new video, podcasts, press releases, and appearance schedules of award recipients when available.

NOTE: The old CSK Book Awards Web pages were completely decommissioned on Friday, February 20, 2009. If you have direct links to any of the old pages, they will cease to function on that day. Please use to access the new Web page.

The Rainbow List

The 2009 Rainbow List, a joint undertaking of ALA’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Round Table and Social Responsibilities Round Table, was recently announced. It features well-written and/or well-illustrated titles with authentic and significant gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgendered/queer/questioning content for youth from birth through age 18. To view the list, visit:

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Have a Publication Idea?

The ALSC Publications Committee would like to remind members that we are always accepting ideas and proposals for new publications. Please note that proposals can be for new publications in various forms, such as book, pamphlet, or electronic. The committee will also review previous publications that may be in need of revision. Please use the Publication Proposal Form (Form J in the Division Leadership Manual) to submit proposals for new publications. The form can be found at, click on "About ALSC" -- "Governance" in the left-hand navigation. To request review of a previous publication, contact Roxanne Landin, Publications Committee chair (rlandin at 

Bits and Bytes

Storytime Materials Online. Saroj Ghoting, ALSC member and early childhood literacy consultant, has posted online rhymes with graphics at Visitors to the site can download the content and create posters from it, using a local print shop, or Publisher or a banner software program. Posters can be used as flipcharts in storytimes.

Digital Youth Project. In November 2008, results of the Digital Youth Project were summarized in “Living and Learning with New Media: Summary of Findings from the Digital Youth Project”  ( Over three years, researchers from University of California-Berkeley and University of Southern California interviewed young people, held focus groups, and conducted thousands of hours of online observation in this extensive study of youth media use supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. To learn more about the study, its results, and the MacArthur Foundation’s digital media and learning initiative, visit

Getting Together

Arbuthnot Lecture Updates

2009 Arbuthnot Lecture. Tickets to attend the 2009 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture, featuring Walter Dean Myers, renowned author of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction for children and young adults, are now available. The lecture is scheduled for April 18, and will be held at the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) Haley Farm, which will be open to Arbuthnot guests beginning at 11:00 a.m. Lecture attendance is free, but tickets must be reserved in advance. To register online, visit: Written ticket requests may be faxed to (865) 457-6464. For more information about CDF Haley Farm, visit

2010 Arbuthnot Lecture. Interested in hosting the 2010 Arbuthnot Lecture? Applications are now available to institutions interested in hosting the 2010 lecture to be delivered by Kathleen T. Horning, director of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC).

Host site application forms can be downloaded at Look for the link under "Breaking News." Completed applications are due May 1, 2009. Information about host site responsibilities is included in the application materials. The lecture traditionally is held in April or early May.

2009 Preconference Shines Light on Intellectual Freedom

Join ALSC on Friday, July 10, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., for its 2009 Preconference, Meeting the Challenge: Practical Tips and Inspiring Tales on Intellectual Freedom. The day will emphasize the right to read as an essential foundation of library service to youth and feature librarians and intellectual freedom advocates, including author Judy Blume.

Registration, separate from ALA Annual Conference registration, is required for the preconference (event code: SC1). The cost for advance registration is: $190 ALSC member; $240 ALA member; $285 non-ALA member; $180 students. Advance registration ends May 22. Onsite registration (May 23 through day of program) is $300. For more information, visit:

IBBY Regional Conference

"Children's Books: Where Worlds Meet," the 8th IBBY Regional Conference will be held October 2-4, 2009, at the Q Center in St. Charles, Illinois. This three-day conference is a rare opportunity to interact with international authors and illustrators, including Shaun Tan from Australia, Yohannes Gebregeorgis from Ethiopia, and Katherine Paterson and Naomi Shihab Nye from the United States.

Carmen Diana Dearden from Venezuela, editor and publisher of Ediciones Ekaré, will deliver the Dorothy Briley Lecture. Stimulating and thought-provoking book discussions and small group sessions will provide opportunities to network with concerned professionals and to think about issues related to the use of international literature to build intercultural understanding. Travelling exhibits from the International Youth Library, including the 2008 IBBY Honour Books and the IYL’s Imaginary Library Original Art Exhibition will be displayed during the conference.

To submit a proposal to present a poster session during the conference, please send the following information: your name/affiliation/address/phone/email; presentation title; brief description, 25-word maximum; and presentation narrative: describe the content of your presentation, including how it addresses international children’s/ adolescent literature, what new information or insights it is providing to the field, and how you plan to present it in poster format (500 word maximum). Submit your proposal by e-mail to: IBBY Regional Program Committee, The deadline is April 1, 2009

For more information about the conference, visit:

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Save the Dates

Children's book illustrator and author Brian Pinkney is the first writer announced for the 2009 North Carolina Literary Festival, set for September 10-13, 2009.

With the theme "A Celebration of Reading and Writing," the free public festival at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will include a stage dedicated to programs for children. Pinkney will read from his works, share his illustrations, and interact with the audience.

Pinkney's participation in the festival is sponsored by the Susan Steinfirst Memorial Lecture in Children's Literature at the School of Information and Library Science. Steinfirst taught children's and young adult literature in the school from 1976 to 1996. A detailed schedule for the North Carolina Literary Festival will be available in April at Contact Ernie Cox ( for additional information about the Steinfirst Lecture and Brian Pinkney's appearance.

The 7th National Conference of African American Librarians, sponsored by the Black Caucus of ALA, will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, August 4 - 9, 2010.

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