Updates from MN State Library Services

state_mnTO: Minnesota Libraries
FROM: State Library Services
DATE: May 22, 2015
SUBJECT: Updates from State Library Services: Early Literacy VISTA Opening, LSTA Mini Grant Announcement, and more

Work with Us: Early Literacy VISTA Opening at State Library Services

Are you interested in making a difference in the ability of public libraries to deliver high-quality early literacy services? State Library Services is recruiting a full-time VISTA member to work with us on connecting libraries with community-based childcare providers and to develop and assess early childhood services that improve school readiness in at-risk children. Apply at the Americorps website. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled; the service year starts in late July. Please contact Jackie Blagsvedt for more information at 651-582-8805 or jacqueline.blagsvedt@state.mn.us.


Apply for a Libraries and the World’s Best Workforce Mini Grant

State Library Services is pleased to announce a new competitive mini grant opportunity. The Libraries and World’s Best Workforce initiative is designed to help libraries offer programs and services that address Goal 1.2 of Minnesota’s Five-Year Plan for LSTA and the World’s Best Workforce. An estimated $75,000 is available for grant awards of up to $10,000 each. We welcome grant proposals that directly serve at-risk children and youth (between the ages of 0-25) through improved or expanded library-based programs, services and/or learning activities.

Read a more detailed description of this initiative. The application and instructions are available at the Minnesota Department of Education’s grants management site. For more information, please contact Jackie Blagsvedt at jacqueline.blagsvedt@state.mn.us or 651-582-8805.


Technology and Digital Media in the Early Years Webinar

Join colleagues for a one-hour webinar on technology and digital media developed especially for Minnesota PreK to 3rd grade educators, parents, and others working with young children on Tuesday, May 26 at 3:30 p.m. During the session, Lisa Guernsey, director of the Early Education Initiative and director of the Learning Technologies Project, will address current research on the use of technology to support early literacy development, and offer effective strategies for family engagement and school-home connections.

Join the webinar. Advance registration is not required. The webinar will be recorded for later viewing. For more information, please contact Debbykay Peterson, MDE Office of Early Learning, at debbykay.peterson@state.mn.us.


Apply Today for the NorthStar Youth Worker Fellowship

You can generate more wisdom, language, and leadership in the field of youth work in Minnesota. Apply today for a fellowship that will allow you to explore, reflect, and study to increase your leadership skills. If accepted, you will spend the year reviewing research and writings, tapping the wisdom of your local professional network, conversing with local and national leaders, and writing a position paper that will inform systems development and field advancement. There is no cost to you or your organization for the Fellowship, and you will receive a $500 stipend, books and materials, and extensive contact with local and national field leaders. Learn more about the fellowship and download the application.


The deadline to apply is June 1, 2015. Contact Sheila Oehrlein, MDE Safe and Healthy Learners, at sheila.oehrlein@state.mn.us with questions or to request more information. The NorthStar Fellowship is sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Education, the Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship at Augsburg College, Youthprise, Ignite Afterschool, and the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Youth Development.


Combat Summer Slide and the Nutrition Gap – Become a Summer Meal Site

Libraries across Minnesota find it difficult to reach underserved families and at-risk youth. Consider this: only 1 in 6 children who receive free or reduced price meals during the school year can take advantage of this same benefit in the summer. The primary obstacle between these kids and a healthy meal is access. Your library can help these hungry kids by becoming a meal site this summer.


We’d love to replicate California’s incredible success with its “Lunch at the Library” program here in Minnesota. With the “Lunch at the Library” program, California librarians have seen the way libraries as summer meal sites simultaneously battle both summer slide and the nutrition gap. The program draws in new families, builds community partnerships, creates new youth volunteer opportunities, and increases visibility and support for libraries across the state. Read more about California’s summer meal program on Public Libraries Online. Contact Jennifer Verbrugge at jennifer.verbrugge@state.mn.us or Jenny Butcher, MDE Summer Food Service Program Coordinator, at jenny.butcher@state.mn.us for more information about becoming a summer meal site.

Screen Documentaries for Free at your Library

POV is a long-running PBS documentary series that puts a human face on contemporary social issues through timely films that share unforgettable stories. Part of POV’s mission is to lend out its films for free screenings. All it costs your library is shipping costs to return the DVD via media mail to POV. There are more than 80 titles available to borrow from the POV Lending Library, which is browsable by title or topic. It takes just a few quick steps to register a screening and borrow a DVD. Begin by registering on the POV Community Network site. If you have questions, contact Alice Quinlan at 212-989-8121, ext. 318 or aquinlan@pov.org.