Monday, July 27, 2015

Literacy Skills Tracking and Support

One of the first things I started learning about and working on at my new job was the Ready to Read grant project WCCLS is running as a partnership with The Community Action Organization. Non-registered child care providers were trained in ECRR, and have just begun receiving bins of 50 children's books to share with the kids in their care. They receive a delivery each month for six months; then, a new cohort of child care providers is invited to the program. Don't worry, we're working on ways to sustain early literacy experiences after their 6 months is up!

After the first delivery and after talking with our partner organization, it seemed as though there might be a need for a little more support to the caregivers in order achieve Community's Action's grant goal of "storytimes or other structured shared adult/child literacy experiences" at each house. I also saw a need to meet my general grant goal of "if we're relying on someone else to do something new/change a behavior, we have to make as convenient as humanly possible."

To reach both goals, I developed an early literacy skills tracking sheet. There are four delivered with each delivery, labeled by week. I wrote it in English, and our Bilingual Outreach Librarian translated it into Spanish, while replacing different examples with more culturally relevant ones. For instance, Week 2 the "sing!" suggestion was "Five Little Monkeys"; he changed it to the fun song "La Marcha de la Vocales".

The inspiration was those pill boxes that have the days on them.On the back are a few questions to help improve the program; if providers don't fill them out they're discussed at pick-up.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Make a Graphic Novel for Kids

I'm excited to announce here that I've made a big move! You'll now find me at Washington County Cooperative Library Services in Washington County, OR. My new position, Youth Services Librarian II, will see me supporting youth services in 15 libraries and continuing an already pretty great conversation of partnerships, grants, and outreach library service in the county. Two cities in the county, Beaverton and Hillsboro, are both twice the size of La Crosse, so it's quite a bit to wrap my head around! But my coworkers are awesome so that helps my transition a ton. I'm unsure the direction my blog will take in the future, but I promise it won't be "these are my pet peeves so don't do this" or "this is what I see that should change, but I'll write about it here rather than talking about it directly." My role in libraries has changed and I want to make sure to continue to honor the tagline of this blog, as well as value the people I will be working closely with every day. Maybe there will be more unsolicited rants. Maybe more research posts. Maybe guest posts from our member librarians? Who knows. Stay tuned, there will be GIFs.

One of my last programs at LPL was a "Make a Graphic Novel!" program, and darnit if it wasn't one of my favorite programs in recent memory. Here's how it went (sorry it's a little choppy; this is based on brainstormed notes about it I typed up for myself):