Welcome to this latest attempt to connect librarians from west-central Wisconsin with each other! Please send in content (booklists, ideas, photos, etc.), and comment on posts so we can help each other. If you were using feedmyinbox to get new posts sent to you before, you'll need to switch to another service (blogtrottr works like feedmyinbox, googlereader is a good blog-reader to try).

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Great Websites for Kids Update

Great Websites for Kids (GWS) (www.ala.org/greatsites or gws.ala.org), the American Library Association's Association for Library Service to Children’s (ALSC) online website directory, has been completely redesigned.

Same reliable content, but the design is more visual and kid-friendly, including thumbnail images for each site. There are opportunities for users to rate the sites, and special sections highlight most popular pages, Sites of the Week, and more.

This has always been a great site for finding reliable information for kids doing homework or browsing, and it seems to be even more useful. Plans to increase the interactive elements are underway for 2012.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Old McDonald Had a Farm (complete with a lovable donkey)

The Three Little Frogs and the Big Bad Shark

An out-of-work pig seeks employment

Jenna Gilles, youth services librarian in Fall Creek, had an ambitious project last month--a volunteer puppet show! Among other resources, she used the IFLS Puppet Show Kit (complete with a portable stage, many puppets, props and scripts).

She says: "Our Winter Puppet Show was a spectacular hit! Attendance was a bit lower than expected, but every person joined in on songs, dancing, and laughter! A HUGE thanks to all the libraries who loaned puppets, costumes, and props! A HUGE props to our volunteers. We alternated puppet skits with dance and songs with the audience. Our final part of the puppet show was ALL audience participation. Using Jan Brett's The Mitten story creatures on yard sticks and a HUGE sewn felt mitten (all on loan from a local school), the kids got to hide behind the mitten. At the end of the story, they popped out. The adults got a huge kick out of that."

If she had it to do again, Jenna would have the puppet show in February, allowing more time for practice. She offered the show at two different times, and if she had it to do again, she'd only offer one show, since it is hard to get volunteers to commit to several days.

IFLS Librarians: if you want to borrow the Puppet Show Kit, contact Leah at langby @ ifls.lib.wi.us.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Magnet Boards Move In

I accidentally posted this at the YSS Events, News and Info. Blog (take a look for some great reading), but I meant to post it here!

Menomonie Public Library's children's desk has an inviting new feature: a magnet board! Jodi Bird, children's librarian, says they plan to switch out magnets every once in a while. A lack of wall space (Menomonie Public Library is mostly windows) did not deter the children's staff. This magnet board is a (ahem) magnet for kids, and makes the desk even friendlier and more appealing.

What's even better is this is just sheet metal, purchased from a local guy for $27. Not breaking the bank, but sure making the library more fun, and supporting literacy to boot.