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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Friday, June 1, 2012

Read-Aloud Awards

In at Moorhead State University (Minnesota), over 20,000 children--along with college students, early childhood teachers, librarians and professors on the award committee--helped to choose 2012's best read-aloud books.  I haven't heard much buzz about these titles yet, but I am so interested to hear what you think of them!

Wanda Gág Book Award for 2012 (best picture book to read aloud to younger children):

Earth to Clunk written by Pam Smallcomb, illustrated by Joe Berger, and published by Dial Books for Young Readers, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group.

Gag Honor Books:

Fuddles written and illustrated by Frans Vischer, and published by Aladdin, an imprint of Simon & Schuster.
Me and My Dragon written and illustrated by David Biedrzycki and published by Charlesbridge.

Comstock Book Award for 2012 (best picture book to read aloud to older children):

The Busy Life of Ernestine Buckmeister written by Linda Ravin Lodding, illustrated by Suzanne Beaky, and published by Flashlight Press.

 Comstock Honor Book:

Pirates of the Sea written and illustrated by Brandon Dorman and published by Greenwillow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2011.

Photo credit--flickr Sean Dreilinger, Storytime with Rachel

Thursday, May 31, 2012


I bet the title of this blog post caught your attention at this frenetic time of year!  I hope everyone is doing well with last-minute preparations for the Summer Library Program, and are ready to let it rip and have a great time.

The post is actually a nugget of information I gleaned from the Autism Conference I attended earlier this month.  The closing keynote presenter, Nicole Beurkens, talked about the importance of making adjustments when communicating with someone on the spectrum.  Making meaning of communication is a challenge, as processing information takes longer for many people on the spectrum.
  • One person in the audience talked about one of his students, who has a 17 second delay between someone telling or asking him something, and when he is able to respond.  The teacher just counts to himself to keep from interrupting his student's processing time.
  • If you continue to repeat or rephrase the question or statement, this doesn't help the person who is struggling to process the first thing you said, it just adds more that needs to be processed.
  • Some strategies for communication include:
    • Stay Calm
    • Slow Down
    • Speak Less
    • Share More (decrease demands)
    • Simplify
    • Stop and Wait
  • Dr. Beurkens shared a video clip from a television show called Brain Rush to demonstrate what it might be like for a person with sensory sensitivity to take in and make meaning of information.  

This seems like a useful thing to remember:  Stop and wait!  Pause!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Take Advantage of Some Great Archived Webinars!

Sometimes your schedule is not really your own--especially at this time of year!  I wanted to let folks know about some great archived webinars that you can listen to for inspiration and ideas at any time. 

Teen Programs and Publicity with Shannon Barniskis.  Wow!  Everyone I talked with after this webinar was very excited and inspired.  If you want some out-of-the-box ideas, some contagious energy and enthusiasm, and some solid, reproducible programs, take a listen to this webinar.  To listen, you will need to register with your name and email address.

Great New Books for Older Children and Teens with the Cooperative Children's Book Center (in conjunction with the South Central Library System).  Hard to go wrong with this--lots of great new book ideas.

Great New Books For Younger Children (Birth-gr.5) with the Cooperative Children's Book Center (in conjunction with the South Central Library System).

Bringing Mars to Your Library with Amy Ambelang.  Amy attended NASA-sponsored training earlier this year, and put together some ideas from this training for libraries.  Something went wrong with the recording, but the slides are very complete--and you can find them on our website (look in the list and you will be able to find a link to the slides)