- Library Legislative Day is Feb. 11; please register early
- Public library a valuable education partner
- Member/Staff News
- BadgerLink provides promotional materials
- Pew study “Libraries and Society” illustrates expanding roles of U.S. libraries
- 'Building Community through Making' free webinar series continues with 'Making Strategic Partnerships'
- Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant supports Libraries Transforming Communities initiative
- Youth program awards nominations sought
- Continuing Education Calendar
Library Legislative Day is Feb. 11; please register early
Building relationships with elected officials is important library business, and WLA’s annual Library Legislative Day is a great way to make regular contact with state officials. All libraries are encouraged to attend the Feb. 11 event in Madison, and to bring local elected officials or other library supporters.
Participate in Library Legislative Day to learn what is important to public officials and, in the process, position yourself as a resource on library issues. Better yet, do your homework before Feb. 11 so that you can frame library issues in terms your legislator can support: How do library services help people get jobs, improve our economy, support small businesses and improve educational outcomes? You and your library’s supporters can best tell your library's story in ways that will resonate with elected officials!
You can register for Library Legislative Day, and learn more about the WLA’s legislative agenda, by visiting the WLA website. The cost is only $15 per person, which helps defray the costs incurred by WLA, including a continental breakfast. You also can order box lunches for an additional charge.
As in the past, WLA staff will schedule legislative visits for attendees, will provide printed materials to share, and will conduct a morning briefing with guest speakers.
To make legislative day as successful as possible, libraries are encouraged to bring board members, local elected officials, and residents who can speak to the value of the library in your community.
Register today and make your voice heard!
Note: This is the seventh of eight library-related editorials written by the South Central Library System (SCLS) for use by its member libraries. Microsoft Word versions of these editorials are available at www.scls.info/pr/editorials/.
An African proverb states that it “takes an entire village to raise a child,” and public libraries across the South Central Library System put that ideal into practice through the educational support they provide for children.
The efforts of teachers on behalf of children is noteworthy, but they can only do so much. Parents also play a vital role, as does the public library.
Public Libraries are uniquely positioned to support the work of classroom teachers. In this Internet Age, the public library has the computer resources, connection capacity (bandwidth), and online and print reference materials that students need to do meaningful research and exploration. Online resources like Learning Express Library (available through BadgerLink.net) can significantly enhance the learning experience for young students. Public libraries have trained librarians who can teach students how find the information they need by using the resources at their fingertips, all of which reinforces what students experience in the classroom. Public libraries also address educational needs during the summer by offering Summer Library Programs that encourage children to read during their vacations and stave off the “summer reading slump.”
Librarians are trained information professionals, and they love nothing more than sharing the excitement that comes from locating that “hard-to-find” information. They’re all about the process, and want to instill those same research skills in the students who come to them for assistance. Not only can librarians help students find the answers they need today, they teach students the tools they will need to find the answers tomorrow, and the next day.
The old days of librarians shushing people for talking are long gone. Today’s public libraries are places of vibrant discussion and curiosity, the sort of environment that is perfect for encouraging educational accomplishment and excellence.
In addition to the research tools and expertise the library provides, libraries also often have rooms students can use to work on group projects.
In addition to these physical resources, the library provides access to an extensive collection of online resources that may be of particular interest or benefit to students. Whether a student needs to do research in a specific subject area, needs to take practice tests in a subject area, or needs to practice for the ACT or SAT, the library has resources that can increase productivity and achievement. Libraries also have materials to help students meet goals of Wisconsin’s Common Core State Standard (CCSS), which are academic standards for curriculum, instruction and assessment.
Public libraries offer programs and resources as diverse as the people who use the library, but supporting the educational endeavors of students is a primary interest. Check your library out today, and see how it can help you on your educational journey.
The January issue of WSLL@Your Service has been published at http://wilawlibrary.gov/newsletter/1401.html.
Did you know that BadgerLink provides bookmarks and posters to Wisconsin organizations? Materials are mailed or sent through library delivery at no charge to libraries.
BadgerLink has resources for the young, the old and everyone in between. It’s important to let all Wisconsin residents know that they can use BadgerLink from home, from work, and on the go!
See samples of the available materials and place an order at www.badgerlink.net/get-the-word-out/bookmarks-posters.
An overwhelming majority of Americans acknowledge that public libraries offer more than just books and provide community-tailored programs and services that improve the quality of life, according to “How Americans value public libraries in their communities,” a new report from the Pew Research Center that examines the role of public libraries in communities.
“I am proud that libraries have earned enormous trust and satisfaction from the American public,” said American Library Association (ALA) President Barbara Stripling. “But we also know that one-third of all Americans still lack home broadband Internet, and a recent global survey finds U.S. adults lag behind many of their counterparts overseas in basic education skills. Our work is not done, and libraries will continue to innovate and meet evolving needs as new technologies and applications emerge. Libraries are transforming lives through education and help level the playing field for all.”
The report found that 95 percent of Americans agree that libraries play an important role in giving everyone a chance to succeed. At a time when more and more information is moving online and into digital formats, people continue to highly value free access to books and media, assistance from librarians, a safe and welcoming public space, and a range of resources and programs.
According to an American Library Association study, public demand for digital training and technology classes increased 36 percent from 2011 to 2012, while the demand for public Internet-connected computers went up 60 percent. The Pew Research Center study found that 72 percent of all Americans adults have either used a public library in the past year or live in a household with a family member who is an active library user.
“The future of libraries is both online and in person—high tech and high touch,” added Stripling. “From children’s storytimes to makerspaces to mobile applications and augmented reality, libraries mix traditional and new services to meet changing community needs. If you haven’t visited your library lately, I invite you to stop by or log on and let us surprise you.”
ALA President Barbara Stripling’s second installment of the Winter Webinar series “Building Community Through Making,” will be “Making Strategic Partnerships,” featuring nationally recognized speakers and innovative library leaders, from 1-2 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014.
The January webinar, "Making Strategic Partnerships,” includes Lynne Shain and Jerry Crisci, co-directors of the Scarsdale Center for Innovation, Edward Iglesias, systems librarian at Central Connecticut State University, and Bill Derry, assistant director for innovation and user experience at the Westport (Conn.) Public Library. These notable speakers represent academic, public and school libraries that are building student and user success through making.
The Winter Webinar series centers on making through innovation, community engagement and literacy, three focuses of Stripling’s Libraries Change Lives initiative. The sessions are intended to showcase best practices and successes and to transfer knowledge among ALA members. ”What Is and What’s Next: Making Assessment and Opportunities” will take place on Feb. 17, 2014.
These webinars are presented by the ALA Office for Library Advocacy and co-sponsored by the Library Information Technology Association (LITA) and Barbara Stripling’s Presidential Advisory Committee. For more information about this series or for questions about registration, please contact the ALA Office for Library Advocacy.
Registration is mandatory and limited to the first 100 participants who arrive in the virtual room. Visit the Adobe Connect event page to sign up today. These webinars will be archived and accessible to ALA members.
The Winter Webinar Series is part of Stripling’s Libraries Change Lives Webinar Series, which will explore these focuses through partnerships, literacy innovations and more throughout her presidential year. For information on these webinars, or for speaking opportunities, please contact Sue Considine, Fayetteville Free Library.
The American Library Association (ALA) recently announced that it has received a grant of $1.5 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to fund a two-year project, Libraries Transforming Communities.
The Libraries Transforming Communities project addresses a critical need of the field by developing and distributing new tools, resources and support for librarians to engage with their communities in new ways; strengthens librarians as community leaders and change agents; and strengthens ALA’s capacity as a lead library support entity. The two-year project includes in-person training and coaching of librarians and ALA staff and member leaders to support the transformation of library services and the expanding role of libraries as community conveners. ALA will also offer conference-based and distance-learning opportunities. Free digital resources will be accessible through the project website at www.ala.org/transforminglibraries/libraries-transforming-communities.
“Building on a deep reservoir of trust, public libraries are in an excellent position to lead their communities toward a shared vision and a foundation for growth and innovation,” said ALA President Barbara Stripling. “With the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, libraries and librarians will be better able to engage deeply with their constituents and support community aspirations.”
During the grant period, ALA will work with the Harwood Institute for Public Innovation to provide training opportunities and learning resources. Libraries interested in the in-person training and coaching will be recruited through an open application process. To receive an alert when the application period for Libraries Transforming Communities opens, interested libraries should sign up for the ALA Public Programs Office’s PPO Grants electronic discussion list at www.ala.org/offices/ppo/about/ppolist.
The groundwork for this project was laid during the past year when, through support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, ALA worked with the Harwood Institute for Public Innovation and a core group of library leaders to develop a framework for training consistent with ALA’s overall engagement with the transformation and future of libraries.
“Each library serves a unique community. Community engagement allows us to better understand our community and the aspirations and challenges faced by community members. The result is better library service, increased innovation, a greater impact on the part of the library and, ultimately, a stronger and more successful community,” said ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels.
The President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is pleased to invite applications for the 2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards.
The 12 award-winning programs this year will receive $10,000 and an invitation to accept their award from the President's Committee's Honorary Chairman, First Lady Michelle Obama, at a ceremony at the White House.
After-school and out-of-school time arts and humanities programs are encouraged to apply. To apply, just complete the online National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards Application. Completed applications will only be accepted via the online process.
The application deadline is Monday, Feb. 10, 2014, at 7 p.m.