The collection is all around

The Collection All Around: Sharing Our Cities, Towns, and Natural Places


Rob Christopher
Marketing Coordinator
ALA Publishing
American Library Association
(312) 280-5052


CHICAGO — Public libraries’ mission, skills, and position in their communities make them ideal facilitators of public access to local resources. In other words, the collection is all around, and libraries can help citizens discover historical, cultural, and natural riches that they might otherwise overlook. Providing smart planning and implementation advice, “The Collection All Around: Sharing Our Cities, Towns, and Natural Places,” published by ALA Editions, shows public libraries how to make the most of these outreach opportunities. Using ideas drawn from libraries from around the country, author Jeffrey T. Davis covers:

  • why this type of initiative is important, demonstrating how this model strengthens libraries with regard to community and institutional support;
  • programs for brokering public access to cultural venues via ticketing platforms;
  • using library event calendars to feature the programs and meetings of other city agencies, community organizations, and affiliated institutions;
  • the joint use of library cards as IDs, for banking, and as parking/transit passes;
  • ways that libraries can act as guides to local resources, including such examples of “pathfinding” as historical/cultural walking tours, navigating social services, and providing guidance on government benefits and civic involvement;
  • parklets, crosswalk murals, food truck roundups, and other programs for extending the public library beyond its walls;
  • initiatives for improving access and connections to natural surroundings such as nature-play environments, offsite StoryWalks, nature maps, and circulating outdoor gear and state parks passes; and
  • talking points for new and existing partner buy-in, planning advice for getting started and managing the launch, budgeting guidance, technology considerations, and other helpful tips. Continue reading The collection is all around

Mission of ReadOKC is to create culture of literacy

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(From NewsOK, Oklahoma; By Mary Mélon The Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools)

OKLAHOMA CITY – Dr. Seuss has many words of wisdom, but none more so than what he says about reading: The more you read, the more things you’ll know. The more you know, the more places you’ll go. To focus on developing a culture of reading for Oklahoma City Public Schools students and the community, the OKCPS Compact recently launched ReadOKC.

The Oklahoma City Public Schools Compact, made up of the City of OKC, the Greater OKC Chamber, United Way of Central Oklahoma, The Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools and Oklahoma City Public Schools, organized last year to assist OKCPS with key areas that require resources and community assistance. Literacy and reading was identified as the group’s first project and evolved into ReadOKC.

The mission of ReadOKC is to create a culture of reading and literacy in Oklahoma City, beginning with our students. As part of the Great Commitment (the OKCPS strategic plan), OKCPS is working to ensure every student will meet literacy and numeracy criteria for successful transitions throughout elementary school. This happens through reading, both in school and out, and requires the engagement of students, families and the entire community.

Continue reading Mission of ReadOKC is to create culture of literacy

Virtual book drive in Valley aims to bolster literacy among children


(From KTAR news, Phoenix, AZ)

The local “Grow A Reader” program is aiming to put more books in the hands of children, who could benefit significantly from getting ahead on literacy at a young age.

In an effort to ensure that kids are successful when they enter school, Southwest Human Development has paired with businesses around the Valley with the “Grow A Reader” program, where patrons can “pick a flower” and go online to buy a book for a child.

Southwest Human Development, an Arizona non-profit dedicated to early childhood development, said the average child has 13 books at home, but low-income neighborhoods see just one book for every 300 children.

“Unfortunately, lots of kids arrive in kindergarten unprepared and without the early literacy skills they need to be successful,” chief development officer Jake Adams said in a statement. “They tend to be the same kids that start behind and stay behind. We’re trying to change that.”

Businesses where you can get a flower include places like CVS Pharmacy, Jason’s Deli, Jobot Coffee & Diner, Spinato’s Pizzeria and more. Click here for a full list of participating businesses.

P.E.I. public libraries eliminate overdue fines for children’s materials

Prince Edward Island map 1775

(From CBC, Prince Edward Island, By Nicole Williams, CBC News)

As of June 1, P.E.I.’s public libraries will be eliminating fines for any children’s material that is returned late.

Roseanne Gauthier, youth services librarian for P.E.I. provincial public libraries, said the decision to eliminate late fees for children’s materials was an easy one.

“Of course, as a librarian, I really want kids to take the books home, so anything that makes it easier for families to take stuff home, I’m happy about,” she said.

Gauthier said library fees can often act as a barrier for families wishing to book out material for their children.

“Sometimes you do see parents or caregivers who are hesitant about having kids take something home, worried that they might get an overdue fine,” she said.

Incentive to return

While overdue fines will be eliminated, borrowers will still have to pay for a book’s replacement if lost.

However, Gauthier said books can be lent out for several months before being considered lost, and hopes that won’t discourage families from lending material.

“I think that in the end, the benefit of having families feel more comfortable with taking things home and not feeling stressed about having to get them back on time to the day, I’m hoping the benefit of that will outweigh any of the books that get lost,” said Gauthier.

(Read the rest of this article here!)

Designing Your Online Course: Learning From an Expert


“Online courses, open educational resources (OER) and virtual schools are all the rage nowadays.

Christine Voelker teaches other teachers how to build their own online courses.  She’s the K–12 program director for Quality Matters, a nonprofit educational organization based in Annapolis, MD.

Voelker’s got a background in childhood education and library science. She has also helped start libraries and three brand new schools — one elementary, one middle and one high school. Plus, she has extensive experience in starting and maintaining online courses. At the ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) conference in San Antonio, TX, she will be presenting “Designing Your Online Course” Sunday, June 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Preregistration and an additional fee ($239) is required.

Continue reading Designing Your Online Course: Learning From an Expert

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