Minnesota State Library Services updates

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One of the great things about being part of a profession is knowing you are never alone! Even if you are a solo librarian, you are part of a regional system (hello to all our CMLE members!); you are part of the services offered by our state, and you are part of a larger national network of libraries. All of these networks exist to help libraries to provide services and information – so take advantage of their offerings whenever possible. (Maybe a new slogan could be: Make Your Library Life Easier – Rely On Your Network!)

If you have not browsed through the offerings from the State Library Services lately, this is a great opportunity to check on the things they do, programs offered, and services that may be helpful to you and your library work!

Below are the updates, from their newsletter. You can subscribe yourself; or just stay tuned to our CMLE site, and we will continue to bring you this information.

LSTA Grant Awards Announced
As a result of our most recent LSTA grant round, we awarded twelve grants for innovative projects with diverse beneficiaries. The grant-funded projects are wide-ranging and include the creation of programs and resources to strengthen families affected by incarceration, the expansion of a science fair initiative that connects third- and fourth-graders with area STEM professionals, and the development of creative in- and out-of-school-time digital learning opportunities. The grant abstracts are located on the LSTA web page. Please contact Jackie Blagsvedt (651-582-8805) for more information.

Provide a Shortcut to Social Security Services – Webinar
State Library Services and the Social Security Administration’s St. Paul office are presenting a webinar introducing libraries to SSA Express. This program gives people easy access to their most requested services, such as replacement SSN cards and estimating retirement benefits. The webinar will cover how to install a secure shortcut on public computers and also how to provide access via your library’s website. We hope you’ll join us on Tuesday, October 4 from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Register today, and then attend the webinar on October 4. For more information, please contactEmily Kissane (651-582-8508).

Announcing Playdates for Educators (Of All Sorts)
The Playful Learning Lab at the University of St. Thomas is hosting monthly, free playdates for educators, artists, and makers who want to discuss, share, and try out new ways of bringing joy and playful learning to students. Fall playdates will be held on Wednesday, September 21, October 26, November 30 and December 14 from 7-9 p.m. in the makerspace on the first floor of the University of St. Thomas Anderson Student Center at 2115 Summit Avenue in Saint Paul. Each session will include a hands-on project led by Playful Learning Lab students, as well as ample time for discussion and networking. Please email Annmarie Thomas to RSVP.

Is Your Library Retro Chic?
We thought library due-date stamps like catalog cards and book pockets were a thing of the past. But if your library is retro by design or necessity, the Humboldt County Library in Winnemucca, Nevada, is interested in learning if you are stamping materials with the due date at check out. If you would like to add your historical or progressive practices to their data collection, please submit this very short, four-question survey.

Connect with State Library Services at the MLA Conference
We’ll be at the MLA Conference right alongside you—presenting sessions, attending section meetings and conference sessions, and looking forward to chatting with you. Please check out the following sessions our talented staff is presenting. We hope to see you at the conference!

Partnerships to Improve Digital Equity in Tribal Communities
Thursday, September 29, 10:55-11:55 a.m.
Co-presented by Jen Nelson and Hannah Buckland
Whether offering iPad workshops to local middle schoolers, planning a community-wide workforce development project, or coordinating opportunities for adult learners, libraries are active in improving digital equity across Minnesota. Tribal libraries in particular provide broadband connections and technology services to communities deeply impacted by Minnesota’s digital divide. Tribal libraries are well poised to bring about positive change even though limited budgets, staffing constraints, and geographic isolation often hinder the services these libraries can provide. To help bridge this resource gap, partnerships between tribal libraries and like-minded organizations like State Library Services, Adult Basic Education, and local governments are necessary. Join us to learn more about partnering to reduce access disparities and help us move digital equity in tribal communities forward.

Tax Resources for Minnesota Libraries
Thursday, September 29, 10:55-11:55 a.m.
Co-presented by Emily Kissane, Sarah Bjorklund and Chris Anning
The 2017 tax season will be upon us before we know it! This session will give libraries the latest department updates and important tax information so they can point patrons to the best information and resources available. The session will be facilitated by State Library Services and will feature presenters from the Minnesota Department of Revenue. The session will cover:
– Minnesota Department of Revenue updates
– Common Minnesota credits
– Important tax dates
– Free tax preparation sites
– Helpful resources
– Tax Research Library
…and plenty of time for questions and answers.

Believe It. Build It. This Book Can Help You Offer Amazing Programs for Youth at Your Library
Thursday, September 29, 1:45-2:45 p.m.
Co-presented by Jen Verbrugge and Eric Billiet
Out-of-school time programming is growing in libraries by leaps and bounds! At last, Minnesota has a blueprint to help you offer more effective afterschool and summer programs for youth. Believe It. Build It. is a guidebook that brings together librarians, youth workers and afterschool care providers around a common language and research-based practices. Learn about building quality into your programs from the out-of-school time experts who are part of Ignite Afterschool, Minnesota’s afterschool network.

State Library Services On-Demand!
Friday, September 30, 8:50-9:50 a.m.
Co-presented by all available State Library Services staff
Are you interested in getting one-on-one answers about LSTA and Construction grants, running customized reports using public library annual survey data, services offered from the Braille and Talking Book Library, or statewide youth services initiatives from the State Library staff? If so, come to this walk-in “reference” desk and consult with the librarians from State Library Services. We will answer your questions on the spot or get back to you–whatever it takes to answer your queries.

Begin Your Love Affair with Data: Evaluating Programs = Finding Success
Friday, September 30, 8:50-9:50 a.m.
Co-presented by Jen Verbrugge and Eric Billiet
Are you offering awesome programs for tweens and teens, but ending up with empty meeting rooms? Believe it or not, looking at the types of data you collect and why you collect it can help you meaningfully connect with more kids through your library programs. This session will help you begin an evolution from simply doing evaluation to being evaluative–and reaping the benefits through improved relationships with young people and increased youth program attendance.

State Library Services: Moving Ahead to 2022
Friday, September 30, 10:55-11:55 a.m.
Presented by Jen Nelson
In 2017, State Library Services is looking ahead to a new Library Services and Technology Act Five Year plan. The plan will support the ongoing efforts of Minnesota’s libraries to positively impact their communities from 2018 through 2022. Please join us and share your thoughts on trends and directions for library services in the coming years. Come prepared for a wide-ranging conversation about programs that expand services through partnerships for learning and access to information and educational resources for individuals of all ages, circumstances and abilities. Together we will share ideas for statewide initiatives to build networks to support research, education and innovation, improve staff skills, and build the capacity of libraries to serve their patrons.

LSTA Grantee Panel: Meeting Emerging Community Needs through LSTA
Friday, September 30, 1:45-2:45 p.m.
Co-presented by Jackie Blagsvedt, Kelly Stade, Mary Lukkarila and Paul Ericsson
Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants are available through State Library Services to assist many types of libraries from across Minnesota in addressing emerging community needs. In this session, recent LSTA recipients will share how they recognized a need in their community and developed a project to respond to the need. Panelists will also share their experiences with administering their grant projects and highlight project milestones from conception through completion. Learn best practices for identifying and demonstrating a need in your community, and crafting a plan that meets both the organizational and primary audience needs. The session will also include an overview of Minnesota’s LSTA plan and World’s Best Workforce legislation, which shape the types of projects we are able to support.

ConnectED Library Challenge in Minnesota
Friday, September 30, 1:45-2:45 p.m.
Co-presented by Jen Nelson, Katherine Debertin, Marcus Lowry and Marika Staloch
Putting library cards in the hands of kids pays dividends to public libraries, schools and students. Over the last year, three of Minnesota’s public libraries accepted the White House ConnectEd Library Challenge to give every student a library card. ConnectEd supports student learning by providing with wide access to library programs and resources, including rich, digital content, through school partnerships with libraries. At the same time, a 2015 change in Minnesota statutes created a new opportunity for libraries and schools to share information to ease the process. Join colleagues from Ramsey County, Hennepin County and Saint Paul public libraries and learn about their successful projects as part of the challenge. State Library Services staff will also be on hand to provide information about working with schools around student data. Together, we can help to close the academic achievement gap by providing ready access to library resources to all students.