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, May 31, 2013

A Few Cool STEAM Activities

Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math Activities are all the rage, and I can see why!  They seem pretty darn fun!  I've collected a couple of activity ideas I wanted to share here.
First from No Time for Flashcards, a math game that involves water balloons.  Hard to go wrong with that combination!  If you have a fun water-related event during your Summer Library Program, this would be a great thing to add to it. 

photo credit:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/clappstar/ 

Then from the ALSC Blog, a parachute-making and testing program for school age kids sounds like a ton of fun.

And finally, Alyssa Cleland from Park Falls Public Library recommends making Dinosaur Eggs this summer!

Dinosaur eggs
1 1/4 cups dirt
1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cups of salt
1/2 cup of sand
water as needed

Mix dry ingredients together and start adding water slowly until it holds form (like a grainy play-do). Form the mixture around critters of your choice (I suggest dinosaurs!) and place in the sun to dry.
The time needed depends on big your egg is and how dry out. I haven't tried this in the oven, for fear it would melt the toy inside!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Grant funds for technology


Money to do cool technology stuff!  Here are 2 options:

Best Buy Children's Foundation Grants are designed to help non-profit agencies teens build 21st-Century technology skills through programs that address the digital divide, and also give teens the chance to do more than consume technology, but create it.  Programs might include
  • Computer programming
  • Digital imaging
  • Music production
  • Robotics
  • Game or Mobile App Development
Average grant is $5000, with requests not to exceed $10,000.  Grant application opens June 1, due July 1, and notification will come by September 15.  For more information look here!

Wisconsin Library Services and Technology Act has a Digital Creation category again this year.  Funds will be available to develop and improve library resources and services that promote digital creativity and learning for all ages, including the creation of spaces, services and programming. Grants from $2,000 to $20,000 will be available.   Guidelines are here, online session about grants is here, important tips for grant-writers are here.  Application forms will be available soon, but in the meantime, check out the grant application worksheet, available on the Division for Libraries and Technology LSTA site.  These applications are due September 13, and are for projects in 2014.

IFLS Librarians, again, if you are interested in exploring the idea of writing a grant proposal, and want someone to listen to what you are thinking, ask you hard questions, and help refine your idea and your proposal, let me know!  langby @ ifls.lib.wi.us.