A free online course for librarians about social software and how to use it in their libraries is being developed and will take place February 12–March 17, 2007. The organizers welcome proposals for live presentations and course content on blogs, wikis, RSS, and similar topics. For more information go here.
Posted by Beth Yoke

Great CE delivered right to your desktop! Registration for YALSA’s fall session of e-courses opened Aug. 21st and runs through Sept. 25. The session will run from Oct. 2-30. The courses are meant to be the equivalent of a full day workshop. The cost is $135 for YALSA members, $175 for ALA members, and $195 for non members. To register go here. Three courses will be offered:

Pain in the Brain: Adolescent Development and Library Behavior
Teen brain development rivals that of the toddler years: maybe that explains the attitude and characteristics of this historically underserved age group. Find out exactly why teens act the way they do and learn how librarians can address patron behavior issues in a way that will develop relationships with young adults. By the end of this class, participants will: 1) Understand the physical development of the adolescent brain and how it manifests into physical and emotional behaviors, 2) Examine the developmental needs and assets of adolescents, and the role libraries must play in helping teens grow into healthy adults, 3) Discuss how to apply newly acquired knowledge and techniques to improve library services to teens in ways that meet developmental needs and build developmental assets. Instructor: Beth Gallaway

OutReaching Teens
Outreach has always been important to libraries, and now it is proving to be one of the only sure fire ways of reaching underserved audiences. The content of this course will focus on the importance of providing outreach services; different ways libraries can provide outreach services to teenagers with minimal impact on staff and budget; and how to garner support for outreach efforts. Instructor: Angela Pfeil

New Technologies and New Literacies for Teens (Course is full, but you can get on a waiting list)
How does teen use of technology to play, learn, and create improve their text-based literacy skills? How are teens using technology to communicate, collaborate, and create? What technologies should librarians know about to support teen interest in building community online? In this four week course you will find the answers to these questions, become familiar with the tools and techniques teens use to communicate and collaborate online, and discover how to inform your own community about best practices that support teen’s technology-based print literacies. Participants in the series will have the opportunity to talk with others about teen use of technology and how that use improves literacy skills. They will also have the chance to create a framework for a program or service at their library that supports teen technology-based print literacy. Instructor: Linda Braun

To learn more about the e-courses, go here.
-posted by Beth Yoke

Yesterday I had the chance to participate in a Teen Summit sponsored by the Nassau Library System. Approximately 53 teens, 19 librarians, and associated library professionals attended. The Summit was planned to give teens in the County the opportunity to meet each other, think about their role in the community and the library, and come up with creative ways that their libraries could better serve them.

The facilitator for the day was one of the Search Institute trainers, Sue Allen. From the very start she got the teens involved in the program. Within a very short period of time the teens, and librarians, felt comfortable talking about the world, teens and adults, and libraries.

At one point Sue had the teens and librarians (separately) develop lists of stereotypes and expectations. As a part of this the teens (in small groups) wrote down lists of how they want to be perceived by adults. These lists were pretty powerful to ponder and included:

  • Awesome
  • Determined
  • Not Lazy
  • Eager

On these lists teens also wrote that they wanted to be respected by adults and that they wanted to be judged correctly.”

Shouldn’t all library staff, in all departments, be able to see teens in these ways and give them what they need/want?

After discussing the 40 Developmental Assets, teens and librarians again broke out into small separate groups and came up with ways that libraries could support teens. What was interesting about this list was that the teens weren’t really able to think outside of the library box that they already knew. The ideas were good but they weren’t so different than what libraries already do for teens. It seems to me a next step is to get teens and librarians talking together again about how the ideas need to be implemented, what the barriers are to implementation, and to perhaps come up with more forward-thinking programs and services.

It really was a great day and it’s a testament to the commitment of the librarians who attended that each came with at least one teen from their community. (Some librarians had 5 or 6 teens at the Summit.)

BTW, YALSA Serving the Underserved (SUS) trainers are well equipped to work with libraries to integrate the developmental assets and youth participation into their programs and services. If you are looking for a trainer you might check out the SUS list.

Attention student members and members who are new librarians! YALSA will sponsor two members to take part in ALA’s Emerging Leaders Innitiative. If selected, you will receive free training and funds to travel to the 2007 ALA Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference. Click here to learn more or to get an application. The deadline to apply is Sept. 15th.
-Beth Yoke

I’m curious in what ways librarians relax and why. Sometimes I think it is important to talk about who we are and what we do when we’re not librarians, gamers, fighting/educating about DOPA, promoting literacy, TABs, going to meetings, etc. Yeah, right. I’m not one to speak. My coworkers might get emails at midnight. They might get them at 6am and ask me, what in the world? I grew up with a father who was his job first (a policeman) and father secondary-maybe that’s where I get some of my work ethic from (not always admirable).

When Michael Stephens presented last week at my library, he asked the audience if they are able to play at work. How many are able to? Maybe I’m looking for answers. I don’t think I can ever stop loving what I do and feel my work is finished.

Tomorrow is my birthday. I’m volunteering 11 hours at a local literary festival. Nikki Giovanni, Omar Tyree and over eighty other authors will be there. Teen volunteers and other colleagues will be helping me to promote the library. Part of me feels where else do I want to be? The other part-I found an outdoor labyrinth to walk in the town that I live. The first one I ever walked was in was San Francisco. That’s where I’ll be after the festival. I know I’ll be smiling.

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

Posted by Jami Schwarzwalder

I’m graduating soon, so I created a gmail account that I will have long after I leave my school. I found out quickly that gmail groups messages together so that listserv replies that normally would each show individually, now are nicely grouped under the original message. So I transferred all of my listservs to gmail, and joined another one.

This is all great, but gmail has another feature built in: Quick Contacts. Everyone that sends me a message, and has a gmail account seems to end up on the list. The chat works inside the browser so I haven’t had any problems using it on computers that block IM. The odd part is that people from the listservs that have gmail also show up on the Quick Contacts bar, which for a while made me wonder who they were. So I looked, and once I realized who they were I said hi. Now I know two people I would never have known if it hadn’t been for Google Chat.

The last thing I like about google chat is that the messages are saved in my e-mail. So when I chat with librarians I can go back and see the information we discussed. (This seems great for planning). I have become a big fan of gmail, because it allows me to have the same flexibility as outlook (tags, filters, spam control) while being browser based. I can check my mail and chat from anywhere.

The integration of these two technologies feels natural to me, much like the integration of personal webpages, blogs, mail, message boards, and now IM on Myspace. I would recommend students create a gmail account and register for a few listservs, because the experience will help you understand the world of teens better.

Posted by Linda W. Braun

Start planning for January in Seattle and make room on your calendar for this year’s Midwinter Institute titled Teens, Life Online, and Libraries. The Committee planning the Institute has great plans including:

  • A library director’s look at how to bring technology and teens together via the library
  • A presentation from teens and librarians that are a part of the My Own Cafe project.
  • Building community with music and a local radio station in a presentation from staff at Kings County Library
  • And more

If you have stories to tell about how your library is building community with teens via technology the Institute Committee would love to hear them. Tell about them with a comment to this posting.

The Institute will be held on Friday, January 19th, and will be followed by a gaming night.

It’s very important for divisional representatives to be on ALA Council and involved in Association decision-making. The youth divisions present a united front for promoting youth services in ALA, but there need to be youth division members on the ballot in order to do so. YALSA members have always been involved and need to continue to be so. Please consider nominating someone. Self-nominations are strongly encouraged.


The ALA 2007 Nominating Committee is soliciting nominees to run on the 2007 spring ballot for the offices of ALA President-elect, ALA Treasurer and Councilor-at-large.

The Nominating Committee will select two candidates to run for President-elect, two candidates to run for Treasurer and no fewer than 50 candidates for the 33 at-large Council seats to be filled in the 2007 spring election.

The President-elect will serve a three-year term: as President-elect in 2007-2008, as President in 2008-2009, and as Immediate Past President in 2009-2010.

The Treasurer and Councilors-at-large will serve three-year terms, beginning after the 2007 ALA Annual Conference and ending at the adjournment of the 2010 Annual Conference.

The ALA President, Treasurer and Councilors also serve in corresponding roles in the ALA-Allied Professional Association [ALA-APA]. Individuals considering ALA-APA office are encouraged to consult with their employer regarding any restrictions regarding lobbying activities or service on the governing body of a 501(c)6 organization.

Members who wish to make nominations should submit the following information: nominee name; present position; institution; address; telephone; fax; and e-mail address. Self-nominations are encouraged. All potential nominees must complete the Potential Candidate Biographical Form available at https://cs.ala.org/potentialcandidates/ Nominations and forms must be received no later than September 1, 2006.

Nominations may be sent to me at:
C. Allen Nichols,
Library Director,
Wadsworth Public Library,
132 Broad Street,
Wadsworth, OH 44281-1897.
E-mail: allen@wadsworthlibrary.com

To encourage diversity and leadership development, the Committee will refrain from nominating any current Councilors for election to another term. However, the Committee encourages all current Councilors who wish to continue their service to the Association to file as petition candidates. Petitions will be available from Lois Ann Gregory-Wood, Council Secretariat, ALA, 50 E. Huron, Chicago, IL 60611, Email: lgregory@ala.org, or during the 2006 Annual Conference or 2007 Midwinter Meeting. Petitions require 25 signatures for names to be included on the 2007 ballot.

Posted by C. Allen Nichols – ALA Nominations Committee Member and YALSA Board Member

Registration is now open for two online courses from YALSA: “New Technologies & New Literacies for Teens” and “Power Programming for Teens.”

Courses will run from July 17th to August 17th, 2006. Registration for the courses is available online from July 10 through 17th at www.ala.org/yalsa. Each course is the equivalent of a one day face-to-face workshop. Class size is limited to 25 participants.

New Technologies & New Literacies for Teens: will run for four weeks and participants will become familiar with the tools and techniques teens use to communicate and collaborate online, learn how to inform their own community about best practices that support teen’s technology-based print literacies, have the opportunity to talk with others about teen use of technology and how that use improves literacy skills, and create framework for a program or service at their library that supports teen technology-based print literacy. The course will be taught by Linda Braun. The cost is $135 for YALSA members, $175 for ALA members, and $195 for non members.

Power Programming for Teens: will run for four weeks and will help participants attain a higher level of service to teens at their library or school. This course is designed for library staff who would like to expand their teen programs. Participants will learn how to develop and implement more programming ideas that will work at their facility and will be taught by Amy Alessio. The cost is $135 for YALSA members, $175 for ALA members, and $195 for non members.

Linda Braun is an educational technology consultant with LEO: Librarians & Educators Online. In her job she works with schools, libraries, and other types of educational institutions to help them figure out the best way to integrate technology into their programs and services. She is an adjunct faculty member at Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science, a columnist for VOYA, and has written several books on topics related to teens and technology.

Amy Alessio has enjoyed the constant advice of her Teen Advisory Board for over 8 years in her capacity as Teen Coordinator for the Schaumburg Township District Library in Illinois. She is the YALSA Fiscal Officer and the editor of the YALSA online journal YAttitudes in addition to being active in the Illinois Library Association. She has presented locally and nationally on teen services and writes about young adult literature for Teenreads.com and Crimespree magazine.

Additional courses will be offered in October. More tips on taking online courses can be found here.For more information about YALSA, please contact us via email, yalsa@ala.org; or by phone at 1-800-545-2433 ext. 4390.
Posted by Beth Yoke

Posted by Linda W. Braun

In my mail yesterday I had my new issue of Young Adult Library Services (YALS) – the official publication of YALSA. The theme of the issue is get active @ your library (which is the Teen Read Week theme this year.)

Inside is an array of articles that demonstrate some things librarians and teens are doing together – ways in which teens and librarians are being active. Included as demonstrations of activity are:

  • DDR playing
  • Technology integration
  • GLBTQ programs and services
  • Volunteer opportunities

Take a look at your copy to discover ways you can become active with the teens in your library and community.