Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy Holiday's

 I'm taking a little break ,  enjoying the family dinners and activity's .  I hope everyone is having great holidays.  I want to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year.    My work schedule is varied last week and this week, so I am doing the home thing many days and am enjoying  down time. 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Into the Hall of Book review site

Into the Hall of Books is a book site written by Ashely.  Ashley likes to read and does reviews of a mix of genres and categories,  She does Ya, adult fiction , middle grade fiction, contemporary, historical fiction, science fiction, dystopian and Christian fiction,.

  Across the top of the page are some links to click on ( review, books read in 2014, recently re -read, and policies)  In the right hand column are images of the covers of the two books she has been currently reading and rereading.
  Ashley's reviews are detailed but will not give away the ending . She tells you what she thinks  about the book and gives a great summary. She also has ideas at the end of the review on who she thinks the book would appeal to.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Blizzard Book Review

  This is a story written  and illustrated by John Rocco  of his adventure's during the blizzard of 1978.  He grew up in Rhode Island  .  Almost 40 inches of snow feel during that storm. They couldn't get out of the front door so they went out the window instead,  The family played outside  and then went inside to have hot coca made with milk and a warm toasty fire.   They were waiting for the snow plow to clear the road.

 On the third day, Johns dad shoved out the driving way while still waiting for the snowplow.  John and his sister dug tunnels in the snow.  Things inside got bed.  Their food started to run . And they couldn't walk i n such high snow.

  John realized he needed to do something, He made snow shoes out of tennis rackets and then a list of necessities to get from the store.  Then he set out.( He took his sled!

Along the way, he checked in  with the neighbors to see what they needed, helped build a snow man , and climbed a tree to see what was going on . Finally he made it to the store and got all the things everyone needed.
 Then he hurried to go back towards home before it got dark. He dropped off all the items he got for his neighbors.  And of course the next morning the snow plow came and cleared the streets.

 A great winter read with John's famous illustrations, Students will enjoy the story , and then be prompted to tell their winter storm stories.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

My Book Search Favorites- Book giveaway

  One of  my favorite places to get quick and easy book ideas is Amazon. What is not to like? I can click on a title and get so much information on the latest titles!
  I get a summary, lists of critical review, and customer ratings. This is very helpful  just to read and see what the best sellers are. While I do not purchase from Amazon for work, I do for home if I absolutely have to have a title . I find the information to be quick and accurate.  

  Another favorite is Bas Blue.  This little catalog has great reviews of titles  that are short and sweet and to the point. I can read the review here and then go to track down more information on Amazon or  my book jobber site.

  One more I want to mention today is  China berry ( I love Chinaberry)  The website is great also  When ever I get this catalog ,, I sit right down and look at the whole thing and read reviews.  They provide both new and classic books  that they and their customers love. They support positive and uplifting books for children,  They also have a blog  that has articles and craft projects.

  Tell me  what your favorites are and  you will be entered into a drawing for a FREE Link to my "The Organized Librarian"  e book!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Top Library Technologies-Digital Books

   Digital books are the newest , biggest thing  that  both public and school library's offer   Patrons can download and borrow books to their readers and enjoy the latest books with ease and accessibility.  Most libraries now have ebooks and emagazines that patrons can browse and borrow ,. There are also sites that allow online reading, some of which  I have already reviewed here at this blog.  I continue to search  out the latest  on  online reading and learning.  I feel that as librarians we need to keep up on the latest sites for patrons reading.

   What are your  thoughts on digital books? Do you use them your self? Do you promote them at the public library? Do you have them at  your school- How are they used?? Who uses them?

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Baking Day at Grandma's- Review

   It's Baking Day at Grandma's ( Denise, Philomel Books, 2014)  and these three little bears dress warmly and tromp over the snow to Grandma's house.  This is a rhyming book with great repetition ( It's Baking day, It 's baking day, It's baking day at Grandmas!)

   Young children will love the soft rosy hues of Grandma's cottage. They bake a chocolate cake- and while they wait  for it to come out of the oven, they sip hot coca  and have a little dance.  When the cake is done, they cut it, and frost and decorate it, and then wrap it up. They tromp back home in the moonlight where their cozy home is waiting.

   And yes - it 's my kind of book- there is a chocolate cake recipe in the very end!
  Anika has a great website  .     On it you can find book trailers, information about her other books, and some activities. events, and her blog.  

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Top Library Technologies- Library databases

  Today , one of the most essential tools that library's  offer to patrons is the libraries databases!  Researchers  and information seekers use these to find facts they need, facts they want, and items to further their positions  or their education.

   Databases offer a way to provide information that is accurate and up to date. Hopefully  your website will have easy accessibility to the data bass. You and your   staff may also want to provide classes on using the data bases. All of your staff should be at least familiar  wtith the data bases  and know the availability  on the site  for patrons use.

  Our site has the data bases grouped under tabs:  general, news, science & health, business, history, language and literature, & a tab specifically for students and children. We also have electronic  journals with academic and  specific  focus.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Read Any Book-  is a free site where visitors can read  online for free.   There are many different genres of books: children's, western, mystery, historical fiction, classics, and thrillers to name a few.

 You need to  create a free account to access the books.  Registered users can also recommend and add books to the

  Also included in this site articles and  genre links.   On the main page you can see featured books and read a preview , download the book in various formats, and vote on the book read.  If you are a reader who like to read online , check this out .

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Better Desk Habits

  What should you do if your desk is an absolute mess? What should you do if there are piles and piles of papers, folders, magazines, and clippings all over?

  The easiest thing to do is to take everything and put it in a large box or container.  Then  take 15 to 20 minutes ( set a timer- see Using a kitchen timer  ) Take a pile from the top  and go through each piece. Refile each paper where it should go.   Have some a file folders and markers.

  If there is a current project you are working non , label a folder and put all related items into that folder.Anything you do not need , throw away or put in the recycling bin.

 Also have some files that can be marked : To do, To read, To file.

 Anything you need to save , label a folder and put the paper in it. Then file in your file cabinet.  Make sure you put them in alphabetical order. If you have files you are done  with , refile in the proper spot

  Do a 15 - 20 minute  session  until your bin is empty.
  Now devised a system, Establish a  place marked  TO FILE.  Never let your piles  get out of hand again. Each day  spend  some time refiling  so your desk is clean!

Desk Organization- Part 2

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Customer Service Skills

  There are 7 important customer service skills that our library staff need to learn , that will improve  the library's image and standing.
1. Listen to patrons
2. Smile at Patrons
3. Watch for patron confusion ad then try to help
4. Approach the patron  & be engaged  with patron
5. Use positive body language - be inviting and make eye contact
6. Use the patrons name in conversation when providing library services
7. Smile!

    While theses are mostly self explanatory, as a Director or Manager, you may want to discuss and explain them to your staff.  If they have questions, make sure you call address them and straighten any confusion out.
You may also want to do some role playing at a staff meeting so that staff can experience how each item should be played out.  These are items that can be worked on as a staff team and developed over time.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Superior Customer Service

  All of our patrons are considered customers. And our customers /patrons are very important to help us maintain funding for our resources and programs.  So we should take time to consider our forms of customer service and the way we treat patrons.

  We could also consider our Customer Service  Policy( if we have one) . If not , we may want to develop  policy on how we want to treat our customers . We should want the library to be a friendly, welcoming place where people will want to come!

  One way we can have superior customer service is to hire exceptional employees . These employees are able to set a good example , interact easily with patrons, have a great phone voice and can communicate well via email.

  Also having the proper positive leadership  helps the change of the positive culture of our team ( staff) . In essence , Customer Service is putting the customer first by focusing on creating a positive experience.

  So here is the question: Does anyone have a customer service policy? What is in it?
If you don't have one, what do you think you should have in it? I would love to hear from you regarding  your thoughts on Customer Service,

Check out the Books For Sale Page! My ebook on sale now!

Thursday, November 13, 2014


    As I check out many book review blogs and websites, I come across many new ones. Many bloggers( myself included, although lately I have been slacking)  share there reviews, And they also share their favorite blogs.  So it a self continuing process of finding book reviews, I have found some really good ones which I like to share with you!

   Ginger's book blog sire (  is simple but entertaining.  She likes to share her ideas on the books she reads.  She reads contemporary Ya literature, and adult fiction ( contemporary and historical) . She also promotes books through blog giveaways

   The site is simple to get around .She a tab for book review archives, and her policy on reviewing.
  She has a link to the book she is currently reading. And she also has a listing of her favorite book blogs.

So check her out at :

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Super Powers of Librarians

   The role of the librarian( school, public, academic & otherwise)  continues to change . Every day there are new resources, websites, and technologies for patrons to learn and use. In order to keep up with the 21st century , as a profession we need also to keep learning and growing.  So we need to keep developing our super powers to get the job done.

  Being Flexible:  Yes , we need to adapt and grow and learn all we can in order to help our patrons and students  . So begin by evaluating, revising,  and implementing your programs.   Assess what is working and what isn't . Decide what you will keep doing, ( something that is working , and producing good results, )what needs to changed and how you can change it to provide the best for your  needs and the needs of the patrons.

 Some items to think about changing or adapting: Circulation,shelving, scheduling, Programs. Now don't expect to change /adapt these all at the same time. Take time to think through about the procedures , what you do now and what could be done to be more efficient. Tackle one at the time, make changes , and then re-evaluate to see if the changes are working.  Always ask yourself : Is it working? Why? Or Why not? What could be done differently?  How can we improve?
  By being flexible and going with the change we can  adapt our tasks to become more accommodating and efficient.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Perpetual Page Turner-Book Reviews

  The Perpetual Page Turner is a book blog with reviews of Ya literature, adult fiction, and some non-fiction ( travel and memoirs). This is not a serious  criticism type of blog. This has a very conservational  tone to its reviews.  There also are  blogs on books, and discussion about all things bookish. Some are even personal about the  author Jamie, and her husband Will.

  She has a review policy tab, also a special features tab. She also tells a rating systems for the books she reads and reviews. There is a tab that leads to her book discussions and readers can log in and respond.  There are also giveaways and featured articles.  Along the right hand side , there are also links to her current read, and find a new read, and get exploring  more books.

  So check this out if you want a more intimate style of book reviews.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Good Work Habits at your Desk!

     Hopefully your desk is now ready to go. It is cleared of files ( See The Organized Librarian book- tab up at top for more on  files and filing)  But if not, and you have piles and piles of papers, here is what to do.

  The  key is to NOT let paper and piles keep multiplying!!  Process each paper as it comes  on to your desk.  If you do have papers and piles , grab a pile and go through it.  If you already have files in your drawers or file cabinet, then refile each paper in the correct file.  Do this with each  pile. ( Take 15 - 30 minutes at a time until your desk is clear of piles)

  Now establish a place where  you will place items to be filed/ refiled.  Establish also an area ( I use a standing file holder on the counter next to my desk- it could also be on my desk - and this is for current projects I am working on) Everything else is filed in my desk door ( files I use on a regular basis or in my file cabinet- where I put files that I use once a month)
   Also have a couple of folders( one marked to do, to read, )

  Each day you can pull out the files that you are working on . Then before lunch or before  the end of the day, always take a few moments to file materials where they belong!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Desk organization - Part 2

     Organize your desk and supplies according to your needs and usage.  Items that are used frequently are best put  in a convenient location. For example. I use my stapler, tape, sticky notes and paper clips often  so they  sit on my desk  between the phone and the computer .

  The rest of my desk  is clear. I pull  out folders from my desk drawer or side cabinet according  to what I am working on.  At  the end of the day ( or after lunch) I put tiems back in their correct locations so they can be found easily the next time I need to work on them.

( See more on files and filing in future blog posts and also in  the book "The Organized Librarian"  on sale above - Click  on the tab at top of the page.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Manager's meeting - part 2

   Her are some more thoughts coming from our workshop on developing a good working team.   As a manager , it should be a goal of ours to help our staff fulfill their potential. By doing this, we develop a staff who does their best  and most creative work.

  It is a process no doubt but a gradual one.  As managers / directors we need to discuss and explore with each one of our staff their strengths, talents, and  interests.   We need to observe and analyze as we go about our work with our staff to help them to identify their most positive abilities.

  Another possibility would be to create a survey asking them what they like to do best.  Then we can assign the correct person for the job and have the jobs/ tasks fall into the 'lap" of the right person.  This will help to develop the sense of team work within your staff. When they begin to think of themselves as a team  , then work and tasks at hand become more efficiently accomplished.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Managers Workshop: Discovering and Mentoring Talent-

   I attended a recent workshop for library manger's , directors, and any staff who has people to manage and direct.  It focused on mentoring  talent in staff and getting the best results.  But the speaker also addressed becoming a better leaders to help your library build a dream team of staff who will love what they do and be creative in their positions.

  Her firs big question to use was "Why are you in this job and in this field?"  We had a small group discussion to tell our story of how we got into the library field.

  As manager or directors , we need to a) develop a vision, share it, and have our staff buy into it, b) communicate regularly with staff, and c) create an environment  that allows discussion and a good communication system

  So our firs step would be to create our vision/ mission/  Then challenge staff to help build and fulfill the vision you see for your library.  As you listen to staff and their ideas , make changes . Embrace good discussions that bring up points to improve your library. Have staff become more involved in the work at hand and the vision of what your library is becoming!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Desk Organization

   Organizing your desk is a task that will help you be more efficient  at work or at home.  Planning your desk space - do you have enough room?  Do you have too many stacks? Do you have the items you need on a regular basis?

   Most of the time our desks are used for paper work or computer work,  We need to have files or supplies that are accessible when needed.  If we are lucky you will have drawer space and file storage built into our desk.

   Planning for your desk  usage, first determine exactly what is needed on a day to day basis . For example: pens, pencils, paper, scrap paper, paper clips, file folders, calculator , stapler , scissors and tape.
Now if you need all these supplies on a regular basis , figure out where to put them  , so you can get them if you need them.

  The next step is to figure out  what tasks you actually do at your desk( reports, budget work, computer tasks , letter writing, computations, etc,)  This will help you to prepare the space so that you can complete these tasks) Do you need more room at your desk? Then figure out what items can be eliminated or tucked away  in a convenient spot for quick access.

  Check out my The Organized Library  on the tab above for more information on organizing  your workspace and day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Staff Recommends

  This site provides recommendations to great and memorable books.  The staff receives books from publishers all over the US.  The staff then reads and decides if the title is worthy to be placed on the site. Only then does the publisher pay to have their books placed.  ( This is great advertising for great books!)

 The Staff Recommends  site reaches half a million readers and it help  readers to find a book they are bound to love.

  So to keep up with the latest and best  this is the site you want to  check out.  You can read reviews of their current picks.  Also check out their past selections which gives short review of many of their favorites


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Calendar Part 2

Each week as you look at your calendar, you can record meetings, appointments, and other sessions  onto your weekly/ daily calendar.  The more you do this, the less chance of your missing an important meeting or task.  If you seen you are over scheduled, ( by looking the beginning of each week) then you can cancel, reschedule or eliminate certain items.

  Make it a habit to also check daily on both your monthly and daily calendar to make sure that you are on task  and get accomplish what you need to get done.

  On your daily calendar  write down items that need to be done that day or week.  In the back of my planner, I have several tabs - one of them is work.  This is where I keep a master list of items that I need to do.

  Every week I transfer items to my weekly /daily lists on days when I know I will have time to complete or at least start the project.

 Check out also The Organized Librarian  book for more tips and hints on being more organized.


Thursday, October 2, 2014

We be reading

Webereading,com is a mother and son website that is professional looking and very intriguing.  K is a mom whose goal is to get people reading.  Z is 1 a0 year old who also loves to read and he writes his own graphic novels.  A very talented pair to say the least.

  There is a review policy and tabs that link you to Ya & Adult fiction review, non-ficition reviews, picture and chapter books, and film reviews.

  You will find very interesting review that are fair but critical.  I find this to be very helpful. I also like the film tab because they compare books to films  which is very helpful in my DVD selection.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Calendars- A tool for Organization

   Use your calendar to be more organized in both your home and work life.Calendars come in all shapes , sizes , and types.  One of the first major tasks is figuring out which kind works best for you.
There are also month at a glance, daily planners, weekly calendars, and personal size calendars.

  When a Calendar is used regularly and effectively it becomes an important tool to having a well organized life.  You want a calendar that you can  carry with you .

  Some tips on using a Calendar to be more organized.

1. Use only one calendar! Make it a size  where you will take it with you- especially if you are a working person!

2. A good calendar may also include : a telephone directory , an expense record, and extra pages for additional  places to take notes, makes lists. ect.

3. Write down EVERYTHING!  Even if you have an appointment the same day and time each week- write it down!

   In my planner, I have a monthly calendar, and a weekly calendar. Each week I check the appointments / meetings, and activities  and then write them down on my weekly sheet.  I will also add other activities and tasks that need to be done , both at home and at work. In this way, I keep ton top of all important items that need  attention.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Becky's Book Review Blog

   Becky's Book Review Blog is a site that offers many reviews of her favorite types of books.  She provides reviews of books from children to adults, mostly Ya to Adult. Becky loves to read and her mission is to promote reading/ Her focus on reviews will help Ya's , parents, teachers, and librarians to keep up with the best books.

   She gets books from publishers, the library, and the bookstore. She updates her blog at least 5 times a week.  She writes a review for every book she completes. She does not however complete every book she starts.  Her claim is promote the  love of reading and to connect books with readers. And yes, she has a library degree.  There is an extensive book review policy. She also offers tips on "operation Actually Read Bible" which encourages all to read the bible verses and keep track of it.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Gnooks- Discover New Authors

  Gnooks is a community bases system of the gnod engine.  On this site you can discover new authors , discuss your favorites and learn new titles that are similar to your favorites.

  The gnod engine also provides similar links to music, movies, and art.

  There is a search block for Gnods suggestions when you can impute your favorite authors. The site will give you a list of  suggestions of authors and titles to try.

   Under the "Map Of Literature" block you can type in an author. The site pulls up a 'wordle" of authors that write similar styles to your favorite.  The closer the name is to your favorite the more similar they are to the style and genre. When you click on an author it takes you to another 'wordle" of authors.

  The literature forum gets you into a discussion of a certain author and their works  The latest discussions are listing on the right hand side of the main screen.

  If you want to participate in all the functions of the site you need to be registered and logged in. They use Florke as the systems that provides members with the discussion community.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Manage your time with a Kitchen Timer

     Using a kitchen timers can help you manage small blocks of time. It may sound silly, but it does work.  Once you turn it on, then you have two goals: Finish your project before it dings or try to get done before it dings.  Then when you are done, you can cross off the job that has been completed.

  Use your Timer

1. To remind yourself to make a phone call.

2. Promise yourself to work on something for say 10 minutes on something you do not want to do.

3. Use  your timer to go off when you need to be reminded to do a specific task.

4. Divide yo your time/ day . Spend say 30 minutes on one project and another 15 on another.

5. Play ' beat the clock" and set your timers and try to get all your tasks done in that time period.

6. Use your timer to control length of meetings or discussions.  Each person gets a certain amount of time to speak / present their points.

7. Use your timers to work out length of time for specific regular tasks. Then continue to use  the timer to make sure you stay on task and complete items in the time frame required.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

RA For All - great Blog!

   The blog I  just discovered is "RA for All" and it is a great resource for public librarians who want information on good reads for their patrons.  Part of the mission of this blog is to help librarians in their quest to provide advice to both fiction and non-fiction readers.

  The author provides links, lists , and news about Readers Advisory.  He teachers a class in Readers Advisory( Dominican U- Graduate School of library and Information Science.) so he also shares some of his students work.

   There are also book review,s and links to other book review blogs to provide even more reviews.

 On the right hand side, three are links to book discussions, links to ideas for elementary librarians,( Sturdy for Common Things)  and other blogs with interesting content and book reviews.

The content here is interesting , informative , and addictive. I think you will find a lot of content to give you ideas and inspiration!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Managing Interruptions

  How do you manage interruptions?  Do you get interrupted  and then lose your focus to the job at hand?  Does your day seem like a feeble attempt  of getting your to do list and mostly a series of one interruption after another?

  Here are a few strategies  that may help you

Phone interruptions- the worst

  1. Ask your clerk or secretary to hold all calls. ( while you are working on a specific project during a specific time period.  ) If there is an emergency then of course  they would interrupt you.

2. If you take phone solicitations- again ask your clerk/ secretary  to get details . In my building, it is easy as we do not take phone soliciations as part of our policy- so the clerk / secretary can simply tell the telemarketer.

3) Let  your answering machine  work for you. Even easier if you have phone number id.

Work Interruptions

1) When you have a block of time for a special project ( and you have an office or cubic) shut the door and put up a sign DO NOT DISTURB !

2) When interrupted by a patron , student , or co- worker ask: How Can I help you?  Have them get right to the point. Help them with whatever- then get back to work!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014


   Are you a procrastinator?   Most of us procrastinate in one area of our lives or another.  There are many reasons why we procrastinate: fear of failure, wanting to do something else, feeling overwhelmed ,or being just plain lazy.

   First determine what situation cause you to procrastinate. The best way to overcome procrastination is to start small.  Figure out what it is you need to have done.  Take 10 or 15 minutes and tell yourself  you will just start the task.  (By breaking the task into smaller increments , you will feel better about starting, and you will see that you did accomplish a small portion of the task/ job.

  I like to break down large projects into do-able task.  The other thing that helps is writing down steps/ activities that need to be done and due dates when you want each segment done.

   Another help is to keep your written tasks in front of you , so you can grab a few minutes to do one part.
Then cross off /or date  each segment, and  you'll be able to see your self getting the job done.

   Some other tactics to stop your procrastination : offer yourself a reward/ bribe for the completion of the task or project, delegate part or all of the job, clean your workspace and leave only the task at hand out, or trick your self: I 'll only do one page today"

  Check out my book"The Organized Library" under the tab Books for Sale for more ideas on how to get more done.

Thursday, September 4, 2014


  Bookish is a great site that gives readers expert book recommendations. The mission of
Bookish is to engage readers with more stories , books, and authors,\.

  Bookish features great content about both new and notable books  Through this site you can read reviews , check ratings  , and read a sample.  If you are registered you can 'add to  your bookshel' and purchase books in various formats.

  You can get recommendations  to great reads by typing in titles, and then Bookish leads  you to other titles that are similar  or by the same author.

  You can also search by subject( cooking, children's, biographies,mysteries, romance, and Ya just to name a few.

  Check out down at the very bottom of the page  to just browse.  There are further recommendations lists of best sellers , and prize winning books.  I think you may find Bookish  an extremely valuable resource for both librarians and  book lovers.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Being organized- What are the Benefits?

  Being organized means being able to find what you are looking for, getting tasks m and activities done in a timely manner, and being in control of your life responsibilities, activities, and events.

  When you figure out which ( or all areas of your life that are not working, then it is time for you  to take the steps to learn how to be organized.  Start with one area that needs to be organized.  As you learn this skill, then you can select another area and continue to the organization bug spread to the rest of your life.

 You will  surprised how much more effective you will be and how much more smoothly  your day will go.

  If you are organized at work, then start to work on the other areas that need help.  I will be writing some posts that will give  you ideas to help you get started. 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Early Word Part 2

     More on Early Word!  This site is awesome and provides so much great information about the best and upcoming new books.  On the left hand side t, there are so many categories to select from: audio books, book events, books and movies,  fiction lists. ideas to steal, librarians in the news,  non-fiction lists,  to name just a few.

     As always, there are links on the left to the archives for each month.

   Now to the right!  We have links to best seller list which are invaluable to the the busy librarian selecting  reviews and recommendations.  There is also an awards list that will also help in collection development.  There is a Coming Soon section that showcases all the newest books that are arriving in the coming weeks and months.

  There are links to library reads, movies and TV tie ins based on books( and even links to trailers of the new show or movie.  Also there is a listing of links to publishers catalogs.

   The more you look at Early Word , the more  you see  how much it has to offer!  So keep checking out this great resource!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

21st Century Library Blog

   The 21st Century Library blog offers a forum whereby librarians can form a community of discussions about problems, issues, and specific topics.  This blog presents broad perspectives on issues affecting the library profession.

  Librarians can collaborate by responding to polls, and surveys and adding their input.  There are links also to articles  relating to library issues that concern us today. If you continue you will find links to all blog posts, listed in order from oldest to newest.

 One of the things I like bet are the additional links to other library blogs and websites.  All in all this a great spot to visit and get the latest ideas and innovations.  You can see the issues and how other  librarians respond to them and what they think are the best  solutions.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Ficiotn -L Books Lists

  FicitonL is an electronic mailing list that is devoted to Readers Advisory topics.  There are book lists, book discussions, bibliographies, and a wide variety of library related topics.

  This site was developed for librarians dealing with readers requests for good reads.  Created by the staff of the Morton Grove Public Library,( Morton Grove, IL) this is a great service to librarians and staff.

  Subscribers can receive  single or many messages when a posting appears. There is an archive of postings available which dates back to the beginning of the fiction L list.

  I have used this listing to see  titles listing of different genres, author listings, and also  character listings when a question arises about  books with certain types of characters.

   Fiction L

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Librarian Problems

   Librarian Problems is an extremely funny  website that will have you laughing until you cry!
Developed by a librarian named William, he has worked as a Reference Assistance and a Reference Librarian.

  Librarian Problems is a good way to vent common librarian frustrations.  Librarians can also submit quotes and problems  to the site.

   William ( the creator) also has a lined shop with t- Shirts, drink ware and other items with the Librarian Problem lingo. So when you need a break and a laugh , head over to Librarian Problems, and you will see what I mean,

 Here is the Link:   Librarian Problems

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Stop - You're Killing Me!

   "Stop - you're killing me" is an extensive website for mystery fans.  This also includes crime, thriller, spy and suspense books.  They list over 4000 authors and give a chronological list of their titles!

  This site is extremely helpful top people who want to read their books in the order that they titles were written.

   Searching for an author is easy, just click on their first letter of their last name and you will find an alphabetical listing. You can also search by characters if need be in the same manner.

  On the left hand side there are links that take you quickly to: new additions( hardcovers, paperbacks & audio books)  Also included  on the side tab are: book reviews, read alikes, and various indexes.

  There is a newsletter you can sign up for.  And there are monthly Give ways! Plug in you email to the books you want to win- you will be enrolled in the sweeps.

   So if you are a mystery fan, head over to " Stop you're Killing me" ! You will be glad you did!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Early Word.Com- Part 1

       The slogan for Early Word is :News for Collection Development and Reader's Advisory Librarians.

       This site is one to visit everyday! It is so helpful in my quest to get the newest and best books for my patrons.  Each day they post articles about books that Librarians need to know about.

      Every Thursday , the site highlights the best seller lists.  Each Friday, there is a 'New Title Radar' which alerts librarians about titles that re ' in the news', new titles by popular authors, and a  watch list  of titles that may take off.

      There are also alerts about books being made into movies. Numerous other features worth mentioning" Gallery Chat: done a monthly basis where librarians chat about the new books not yet published.   Author Chat  which is frequently held with authors about their titles.

  Of course , there are  also book previews, Best book and Award lists, Coming this Month, and Best seller lists.  For Children's and Ya librarians , check out Nancy Perls- Book Lust and  Lisa Von Drasek " Early Word Kids"

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Every Thing Library

    EveryThing Library is a website devoted to helping libraries get funding for their community libraries who are in need of funding in order to stay afloat, current , and full of resources.  Everything Library believes that campaigning  and talking to votes about their needs will increase  the libraries  power, services, and help with library initiatives.

   They will and have provided funds to help  sustain major libraries  from having services impacted by budget cuts.( restoring personal and programs)

   This is actually an organization that is dedicated to build voter support. They help libraries to get voters to come on Election day . Training is provided  on various topics: consulting services, conduct feasibility studies, develop fund raising strategies ad train volunteer  in" get out to vote" techniques.

  So even if your library in not is a budget crisis, check out Everything Library - some helpful tips and blog articles await you!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

In the Library With Lead Pipe

  The " In the Library With Lead Pipe"site is an open access journal run bu a team of librarians.  There are articles and editorials written  by the team and also includes authors, educators, support staff and community members.

 The goals of Lead Pipe  is to explore new  ideas and start conversations and to help develop solutions to problems and issues  The  requirements for articles is founded in showcasing original research strategies in librarianship, and practical examples. So you will find highly engaging and substantial information  issues and topics.

 Right off the bat, I found several articles that were informative and extensive  - enough to help me correct the issue I was facing.  I will be visiting there again . It will keep the creative juices  interested in developing more intense  discussion with my staff and colleagues.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Library Reads

  Library Reads is a site that wants to  help Librarians connect readers with the best books.  Their goal is to give library staff the knowledge about new books  to share with their patrons.

  Each monthly Library Reads showcases a review of the 10 most popular books.  The aims is to help  many discover great books.  The reviews help staff know what the best books and be able to discuss them with patrons.

 Librarian who want to participate can help nominate the best books  they have read. You can check on the site for information how to join,

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Teen Tech Time

    At our Public library System( 3 branches) a Teen Tech time was begun at the beginning of the summer. It is at my branch to start with.

   Our Computer tech guy is young so that appeals to many of the teens- especially the boys.   The guys outnumber the girls in this particular case.

   The first two sessions, the group built a pac- man type video game. they ended up sharing the games with the other in the group for at least three weeks. The Third session , the group learned how to produce a computerized comic strip using the Gimp program.

   I am anxious to see what they will do next!

   The group will be extended to the school year and will move to the branch that is closest to the High school. Hopefully the group will continue to grow. It brings  more youth into the public library , helping them to become aware of all the resources we have available!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Benefits of Technology in the Library

   About 40% of American households lack home Internet access.  A study revealed that people using public libraries as their primary source of access to the Internet and a computer.

  With more technology in libraries , patrons have better and faster access.  They can stay connected to families and friends.  Access also provides the ability to explore the vast information of the Internet .

  Local business persons can use the library , and its  resources ( computer access & otherwise ) to develop plans, net work, conduct market research and explore more opportunities.

  Patrons can take online classes to earn certificates and advanced degrees. Students can use test preparation materials  to prepare and study for SAT or GRE tests. Patrons can search the web to provide information  on purchases ( cars, appliances, data on how to do and how to fix and other areas items of interest.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Open Library  is an editable library catalog. Their goal is to have a pager for each book published.  Visitors can contribute new information or make corrections.

  One can browse by subject or author. To date there is over 20 Million records and  growing. There are links to  read free ebooks which can be read from whatever form of computer or ereader you have.  There are also links to borrow books on your device. This is a great Internet  archive..

  There us a daisy format  that provides talking books ( Library of congress national service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped)  Open Library also suggests where the physical book can be purchased.
   I like to click on the lists tab because it fives some very interesting topic book lists. If you sign up amd make an account , there are many ways to help the open library cause and continue to grow their collection.

  Some of a things you can do on Open Library : read, borrow up to 5 titles for 2 weeks, with 1000
 librarians participating.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Libraries are Technology Hubs

  Public Libraries are the technology hubs form most communities, large and small.  Libraries offer public computers for use by patrons and visitors.  Nearly all public libraries offer  Internet access. Some also offer wireless access.  There are still many who do not have these services at work or home.

  Of course, many public libraries have computer training classes and  computer assistance on a range of topics ( general computer skills, searching  skills and resources, software instruction, data base instruction and career  building classes)

  Using technology, libraries provide access to almost unlimited information to patrons seeking answers.  Because the information is online, the  resources can be accessed anytime of day or night.

  Many libraries provide one on one training. Patrons can find information , download audio books , and reserve / renew books on line, or maybe even take a class.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014  is another powerful and personal search engine. One of their advantages is that they do not collect or share your personal information.   Their search results claim is that  they have more comprehensive and more accurate search results than the other major  search engines. This also includes an advanced search  tool.  There is also an international phone directory and for fun a video search.

  When you use Ixquick, you are using  many popular search engines combined. These cover more of the internet than any one search engine combined.    On a search you will see stars *- If you see 5 stars that indicates that 5 search engines agreed on the results of the search.  You can be assured of the most accurate information and results.

  Ixqucikc sends your search topic only to search engines that can handle that specific search,
You can search Izquick in 18 languages. The seraph can include local and international results. You can include local and international results.   You can also find national and international business. n There is also a reverse look for phone numbers. Another plus using Ixquick, that on the tool bar you can us the magnify button to enlarge or reduce any web page.

 So check it out and see if you like using Ixquick!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Summer Learning

  In the past year, I have reviewed and learn to use many  web 2.0 tools and seen many interesting websites . Make if one your goals this summer to learn how to use maybe two of these so that you can use them with your students and staff for the next school year,
   By using a neat web 2.0 tool with your students , they will be more engaged in their learning of the information skills you are imparting. Students in the 21st century need to be able to know about  and use these 'cool' ways of collaborating , interacting, and collecting information.

    Make a presentation ( think power point, prezi) for your student and teacher orientation of the school library.  Teach students about  blogs or pod casts, and have them share what they are reading and learning.  Develop a wiki for students to use for collaboration on a research topic for a certain unit or lesson.

    Don't forget your staff!!  What tool can you teach them to use? Power Point, Prezi, Blogging, or podcasting,wall wisher,? ( Just to mention a few). Do some staff development workshop[s and show them how they can  be used to engage students.

    So make a goal for the  summer , but don't just stop learning at two.  When you have mastered those, make another goal to learn two more, Let me know what you will be doing with your Web 2.0 Tool!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Technology and Public Libraries

 I keep writing about the importance of the newest technology in public and school libraries.  It is because they are needed  and wanted by the students and patrons.

  Technology is a solid part of the 21st century library.  It helps the library with a lot of its daily tasks ( circulation, processing and statistics just to name a few)

But what is really apparent is that libraries and technology help patrons connect with resources and ideas( books, ebooks, virtual reference) Free and full access sets us apart from many countries who do not have public and school libraries like we do here in the US.

   Our patrons can find the information that they need or want, both in print and online resources.

  Think of the technology's we have that patrons use: printer, copies, computers and wifi.  Patrons can now access the information online any hour of the day or night.  Patrons can use databases , download ebooks and audio books, search the catalog ad even borrow magazine's,

  Libraries offer Internet access. In some communities , this may be the only place to get free access.

   Finally many libraries offer information and assistance n the nations quest for jobs, Many offer classes m career counseling and resume building.

   This  technology and resources keeps the library in the foremost place in each community .

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Duck Duck Go

  You know Goggle, Bing, and Yahoo for search engines. But do you know Duck Duck Go?
 ( DuckDuckgo,com )

    Duck duck go has search results that provide quality web sties related to the search topic. It has a quick response and  sponsored links are clearly labeled. The screen design is clear,

  The results are focused and not complex to this is perfect for children and people just getting started in surfing  the  web.   Duck Duck go [provides quick answers from online sources.

 It also has a no tracking policy . They do not collect or share personal  information . There are many keyboard short cuts. So you may want to try it and see how you like it!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Virtual Reference- The New Library

   In the 21st century , we  need to develop our library website so that patrons can use it to research information is needed.  We want to provide websites that will entice users to come into the library and use it services.

   Mobile services( blogs, wikis, podcasts, catalogs,  databases)  draw patrons in , announce services, and programs,  and help patrons find answers needed.  Many of our users already are in tune with mobile and online activities  that provide information and reading pleasure.  ( Readers are becoming more and more popular!!)  They no longer rely on the big publishers and print resources for their information needs.  So as librarians , we need to step up and continue to develop our online presence.

  Our mission will remain the same: It necessitates  the fact that our website will be kept up to date and  alive.  The links available will be chosen to attract and keep the patrons happy and interested,

  And then do not forget we can support these developments with program and classes for those patrons who  need to know more about the newest technology!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Virtual Reference Desk

 Virtual Reference Desk  - WWW.refdesk.com  is a great tool  with many links to a variety of facts and information.  What a great resource!  And yes they do ask for donations to help maintain it freeness!  But wait til you see it! you will be referring back to it to help you and your patrons.

  There are many things to do daily on this site.  Check the world clock, look at headline news,  see the Fact for the day,  thought of the day, this day in History,  news photos, article of the day, people and business resources, today's birthdays, word of the day, and daily games.

  Refdesk has 3 missions: 1) fast access to facts, 2) easy to navigate, and 3) content that is comprehension.

  Also included : weather resources, news photos and videos, links to columnists, opinions and editorials, facts at a glance,  airline fact trackers, calculations and calendars, sports m health & technology news, and just to much to mention,

 So do your self a favor , and check this out. You will be sure to find  something to help your and your patrons.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Library 2.0

  The library of today is all about library users.  We want to keep the patrons we have  that use our service. But an important goal is to actually seek out those who do not use libraries and it services and attract to show all we can do.

  So we , as librarians, and staff, need to embrace new ideas and technologies that will help us deliver services and involve more users.  What are these new technology's? Many we have discussed here in this blog in the past. They are also found on other blogs and websites.

  Just a few we have yet to explore here : tagging, library catalog 2.0, My space, virtual worlds , and library 2.0.

As I do more research, I will try to  give a review/  summary and let you in on what I am learning. similarly  if you find something great , post a comment here to share!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

  I just discovered  this site and it looks like it will be a great source for all public libraries What exactly is .ibiblio  ?  Home to one of the largest free information databases online, has something for everyone.
   users can browse through the catalog of many unique collections. There are free databases  that provide information to almost any question.
  On ibiblio there have  freely software and information, for topics such as music, literature, art, history, science, politics, and cultural studies.  it is a resource used frequently by audiences of all interests and backgrounds
   The free software is way beyond me  but many more techie would probably be amazed.  What I like is the search on the categories.  The most things that I have used gives a description and a direct link to the information,  Use it to search history and you can be lead to some fascinating sites with  great detailed information. 

   I will have to continue to search on this tool to really see all it has- Check it out , It looks like it will be helpful!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Weekly Memo's For Staff

  About every other week, I will send out a weekly memo. The reason I do this is so I can keep the staff informed of various events, activities, policies, and  other items that I  need to tell them.

  The weekly memo helps me because  I can write it once and then know that I have told everyone what I needed to tell them and I don't have to ask- "Did I tell you.....?"  

   My next step will be to post the weekly memos on our library Libguide  ( More on that in another post), so that  the staff can refer back to the weekly memos easily and not have to search through their emails  to find the email I sent.

  Some items I might include:  updates to policies and procedures,  new programs coming up, food drive/pet drive month,  opening & closing procedures,  items to be done when at the circ desk,  birthdays and graduations,  monthly tasks, and other housekeeping items.


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

More Information needs of the Community

Communities libraries also provide local business with needed information: statistic, addresses, legal information, and computer assistance classes.

   Individuals also can be provided with career counseling, resume update, and interview skills,.  Students also have their "work" and need help with assignments,research, and computer tasks. They also may require data bases, and guidance in locating  homework sites, information,, and  other required  tasks.

  Finally , Readers Advisory (direct & indirect)  : Patrons may just want a good Book to read!! Librarians and clerks who are readers can provide assistance and recommendation in this area.

 So Public libraries are very much an important part of the community. We must keep up with community wants and needs. We must seek to provide what the community and our patrons want and need . In doing  so we become a vital and important part of the community and will be seen as a community hub.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Esstablishing Routines- Floor time Part 4

There are many other activities that I do during floor time: Yes I want to be available to assist patrons and help them find answers to questions.  However , since I am never sure when that may occur I have some routines that I do while I am waiting for patrons to need help.

 One of the  first things I do on a daily basis is check the bathrooms for needed items and I keep my eyes open for anything I think may need attention.  I will also straighten shelves, put in book supports,post flyer's, and rearrange brochures in the stands.

 Another item I do at least once a day is straighten up the newspaper stand, and check on the magazines.  I have an old magazine rack which always needs straightening.

 During "floor time" I will also keep my eye out for  bulbs that need replacing, plants that need watering, and  anything out of place that needs to be put back right.

 Also during floor time, I can fill the copiers with paper,  work on book displays,  and  go over items with my staff that need to be addressed.

So "floor time" is a busy time but I can be on deck to help patrons and also get a lot accomplished!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Community Information needs- Public library resources & programs

    Libraries provide information for people who live and work in the community.  So we need a variety of resources , and an understanding of the kinds of questions and resources that our patrons may need. A lot of people expect to find their answers at the library or the library 's website!
   Patrons may be seeking many different facets of information.  For example , product information, : before making a major purchase, many want to find out the quality and features of a product. This can be done at the library through journals or different website searches.,

   Health information is also a big need by  many.  Patrons want information on how to stay healthy, diet and exercise books and magazines, information on medical conditions and lifestyle choices,

 Patrons also need to learn about their communities, and their county's government and their representatives. They may need to contact then for help or to become part of the decision making process.

  How to do it- Patrons like to attain knowledge to do it themselves.  They can learn car repair, baking and cooking, fixing household items and building use items.   How to books and sources are one of the most attractive items to patrons using the library.

  Patrons also use the library for personal enrichment.  They want to read for pleasure , play online games, check favorite websites, enjoy special library programs and gather with like minded  groups of people.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Establishing Routines- Part 3 - Floor Time

 "Floor Time" is when I am Not in my office( that is Desk Time- see Establishing Routines- Desk Time).  Each day I try to spend as much time as possible  on 'Floor  Time". Why?  because I want to be viable to the patrons and the staff and I want to be available for help  when needed.

  This is a time when I am really 'being' a librarian by assisting patrons with reference and reading questions. During this time, I can help patrons locate books,  provide computer help, and discuss reading   suggestions and preferences.

   There are many other tasks and activities that I also do during floor time which helps me keep tabs on the physical site of the library building. This is a challenge  because we are in a 100 year old bank building so something is almost always is needing attention.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Professional Reading Journals for Public Librarians

  There are many great journals  for public librarians.   The two we receive and share with the librarians in our branches are : BookList , and Library Journal.  Both of these are excellent . I also find that the articles are great- especially the ones in Library Journal.

 I use these for mostly reading reviews of the latest books  and look  for their stared reviews and special sections on various genres.   Both also have great websites.

. Booklist is a book-review magazine that has been published by the American Library Association for more than 100 years. It  is widely viewed as offering the most reliable reviews to help libraries decide what to buy . It  also has an extensive website and database, e-newsletters, webinars, and other resources that support librarians in collection development and readers' advisory.

  Library Journal is another  trusted and respected publication for the library community. Built on more than a century of quality journalism and reviews, Library Journal  provides  features and analytical news reports covering technology, management, policy and other professional concerns to public, academic and institutional libraries. They have vast reviews and  evaluate 8000+ books, ebooks, audiobooks, videos/DVDs, databases, systems and websites.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Magazine management

   How do you manage your magazines?   How do you keep track of if anything is missing?  There are many ways to do this. One of the easiest is one described in The Organized Librarian ( See under tab for books for sale).

   Now that I am in a public library , my clerks do most of the keeping track and it is one thing I do not have to stress about.  When a title is missing , I just give a call to our magazine supplier and our friendly Allison takes care of it.

 But I do recommend   keeping a listing of what magazines you receive. Now I also like to track how times each title goes out so I can decide if I will reorder when the renewals come up. 

 We bar code each one as we get  a newer one each month. Which means the current month does not go out, but back issues can. 

 Our present magazine rack is not the greatest. But I am hoping that our Friends group will be able to purchase a regular one for us.

 We keep the magazines for a year and then we discard them. We have a "Free Box" where patrons can recycle their magazines. So at times we will place the outdated magazines in their.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Book Processing

 You still may be processing  your new books. And you may be getting tired of doing it and wish it were done.  Especially in a public library when you may get a shipment every month.  How can you get it done and still do something / anything else to have your library in good shape ?    In "The Organized Librarian" I give some ideas  on getting everything done or at least not feeling so very overwhelmed at all there is to do.

        But I still get the feeling that the books will Never  get all done and then a new shipment comes in with more books. Now I love love new books but I want them to be all ready for the staff and patrons, and not have them staring me in the face.   So what I do is this , depending on the number of other things I need to do , I set a daily goal of the number of books  to do each day.  

         The rest I 'hide"- no I really do not hide them , I just place them on a cart facing toward the wall or in a closet  so I do not see them 24/7.  Then I get the book goal done as soon as I can - coming in early, staying late, making sure that the other activities I need to have completed  are finished. If I am having a good day- I sneak out the next days goal and do them. 

        If there is a great day of only a few classes or a meeting that I do not have to attend then I sometimes do a marathon day of stamping, date due slips,  and  putting on genre stickers.  Then I really feel great about getting all the books ready.


Thursday, May 15, 2014

File Cabinets

 Making your file cabinets easy to use!
     At my new position, there was stuff filed in the file cabinets but not in hanging file folders and not in any kind of order.  so it was very difficult to find things quickly. I also went through and got rid of many files and papers that I did not need. I had to make sure what to chuck and what to keep.

    At the public library level , you are required to keep many records at least 7 years.

    So this is what I did. First I took EVERYTHING out.  Then I got a stack of new file folders and new hanging file folders.  I made new folders for almost everything that looked dog eared and ratty.

   Then I  rehung the hanging folders and filed items in ABC order.   I also have a small cabinet in my desk.  I did the same thing.   I made files and got the hanging file folders  and put that in Alphabetical order.

   What a difference! Now I can actually find quickly what I need.  Now as per  The Organized Librarian , I want to make a listing of what is in each drawer so that when I need to find soemthing I can check the list to see where it is located.

  I still have the files downstairs to do but that is another days' job.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Establishing Routines- Part 2- Desk Time

  At my new position of library manager, I am still trying to figure out routines and schedules.  I still struggle with using my time wisely.  As a school librarian, I had one large room and multiple classes, and the regular library duties.

  As library manager, I have  regular library duties , and then I also am the manager of a three story building.  So this is a learning curve for me, and I am slowly figuring out the routines and changing them.

  So I am dividing my time into two parts : library duties and building duties.   The library duties are also  a little different in that I actually have a book budget in which I can purchase books each month and I can get the latest best sellers that patrons want.

  So in establishing my routines I am deciding  between ' desk time" and 'floor time'.  During my desk time, I  do the following activities at designated times: First thing in the Am ( before opening) check emails,  track wireless, check answering machine .

  Also I have Desk time  during coverage of lunches: Again I check emails, work on purchasing lists, reading reviews,  printing out calendars, flyer's,  making phone calls.

  At the end of the day, I also do a little desk time: again check emails, make phone calls,  file papers,  clean up my desk,  make plans for the rest of the day, and check my calendar and planning books.
I might also during  any of these times, write down questions I may need to ask my Director or Assistant Director.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Library Signage

  Library Signs are important to both students and patrons  in that they help them find sections and areas needed. Even more so in a Public library or a large school library.signage is important because  it will save you and your staff time  in answering continuous questions about where things are located.

  So think about  several things before making signs.   What sections do you have and do they need to be noted ?   What areas are you always directing patrons to?   The most obvious are of course , fiction, non-fiction, children's room, Ya room, or reference section.

 Depending on your library , you may also have  a computer lab/area,  over sized book shelf, large print books, archives ( local history) or  reading or study area.  

  Having signs for these will allow you  to define areas of the library where many patrons / students  want and need to be.   So now for the signs: what kind will you have? 

  If you have a large budget, then check out the library suppy catalogs or find a local person that can design and make signs for you.  The advantage of this is that these will be lasting signs.  Hang them carefully and you will use them for many years.

 If your budget is not large, then do what I do. I made colorful signs on a power point program or a publisher program.  I then cover them with contact  paper.
 These signs  will be placed where needed.  In a few years if I need to make new ones I will. The advantage of this is if I move areas around , the signs are easy to move around also.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Promote with new technologies

 Use the newest technology to promote your library. We have already discussed blogs, podcasts, and other printed promotions  But what about  the really new stuff?? How about twitter,  wikis, you-tube,  Facebook, texting,  and   Apps?

  The teens and young 20's know all this stuff and if you want to reach them, then try to get some of these Social Media and let them help you get the attention  of the younger generation.   At our library we have just hired two young  people on our staff for children's and adult programming. I am hoping they can show / teach us which of these are the most powerful to attract teens and 20- 30 somethings into using the library and all its resources.

  What are you doing in your library to attract the younger set?  Can you share with us what you do to get the teens and young adults into the library??

Friday, May 2, 2014

Your Circulation Desk

   Start at your circulation desk is a good way to organize and begin to be more efficient.    This is the one place where everyone spends a lot of time, the circulation desk!
   Take 15 minutes the first day you can , and see where you can be better organized and more efficient.

    Do you have pencils/ pens handy both for your use ,  your assistant and even your patrons / students.   Get some sharpened and ready. Make a can that people can grab if they need too.

    Look at your calendar. Do you have one? Is it up to date? Clean it off so you can see and write or pencil important dates/ tasks for you to remember. The calendar is one of the most important things for you to use in your quest in being organized and efficient!

  Other  tools that you need at the circulation desk:    Information on programs ( if at a public library) cards to sign up for a public library card,  phone books,   paper clips, paper, staples,  tape, and glue.

  Most importantly keep your items needed for circulation: date due stamps, stamper, re-inker, slips or  slip printer,    and  slip printer paper.  Also keep a supply of pockets if you use them and  other items related to the check out of books and materials.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Establishing Routines

   Where ever you are in your  life's work , trying routine of regular  tasks is worth thinking about and establishing .  Determine   what routine tasks you normally do .

   One idea is to take 3 by 5 cards and write down some of your regular tasks.  I would do a daily card and list the items that I do on a daily basis. ( Circ stats,  checking emails,  ect)

   Then I would do a weekly one - figuring out what needs to be done on a weekly basis. ( magazine check in / straighten, 

    Lastly I would do a monthly list ( on a card if it was big enough)  and list the tasks / jobs needed to be done.  ( reports,  calendars,

    When looking at all the cards , I can then figure out which items should be done when I am fresh and  ready. Morning  happens to be my best time for important tasks, typing, reports. and financials. .

.   This I placed up on my board with a card file  I can glance at that and see what tasks I need to complete.    I can figure out when to do certain tasks, at times that are convenient.It seems to work for me. Try it you might like it.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Successful strategies for PR

   Library's and their staff strive to develop promotions that catch the attention of patrons and future patrons. We want to draw both types of patrons  to our programs and events.

  So what can we do? With a little thought we can develop strategies that work for our communities. Here are a few:

 1) Eye catching book displays, add to that a poster to emphasize and clarify what the display is about.

2) Well designed flyers and newsletters. They should have details about programs , events, and resources.

3) Your website for the library. Make it interactive, interesting and information, Add a blog, podcast, photos,- anything to attract and hold patrons attention.

4) Advertising?  If you can afford it ,use local papers and radio stations, Promote the library, programs , events and resources,  Some local media welcome library information in press releases. They may also provide  a space or time for a library column or library spot.

5) Friends Groups- This group may host programs,. collect funds, and and help promote the library.

6)  Staff members  are a gold mine! Make sure they are knowledgeable and enthusiastic and can discuss and promote programs, resources, events and exhibits,

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Early Word. com is a site for librarians  that will help in collection development and  will also assist them in the Readers Advisory capacity.  Almost each day there are posts on new books coming out, or book reviews  of some of the newest books.  Also included in many post are related video clips.

  I just discovered this  and I am liking what I have found!   The site looks like it will be very helpful in keeping up with the newest and best books for libraries and patrons.

  On Fridays , there is a New Title Radar which alerts librarians to titles that will be coming out the next week.  Books that are recommended are the one that are going to grab the headlines.  Also there is an email newsletter ( I have not signed up for that yet) and book / author news.

  Each week there are hold alerts - which show titles that have long wait list s, titles that are sought after and also information on Media attention to certain titles.

  Of course, there are many lists included in this site.   Just to name a few: best seller lists, list of books made ( or being made) into movies, past best sellers, and awards lists.

  There are lots of features in Early Word.   I really want you to check it out because I think you will find a lot of substantial information here for you to use.

   Other Features:  book previews, major book award lists, publisher contacts, media coverage, and galley chat ( once a month discussion and hot-list- not yet published books)

  Once you get  on there, let me know what you think.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Library Publicity - Part 2

   Before publicizing your library, find out what products and services your patrons want. Do research on this through surveys, questionnaires , and informal discussions.  While you are in this stage, you also want to find out how your patrons perceive the library.

   Develop goals and objectives bases on your mission, and on the results of research on what patrons want and expect.  Select strateg9es that will help promote  the products and services . You want to find strategies that work best, are affordable, and reach your patrons.

  Create a plan of action that outlines each step needed to carry out the publicity plan.  Publicity and marketing can help you establish a positive image for the library in the community. along with the improved image, Pr and marketing will help patrons to feel a part of the library community and therefore they will become more involved in the library's resources, programs, and events, and special exhibits.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Library Publicity

  Help your library's image by using PR ( Public Relations) to establish the library's position in the community.  Public Libraries provide services and programs that support the community in many ways.

   PR  encompasses communication  and helps  establish a clear identity.  this sends a clear message about the library's mission and goals.

  As a school librarian I always  believed in having a library mission.  As part of a library system in a public library, I believe the mission statement is even more important.!

  Review you library's mission statement, library values, and philosophy of service. And if you dona;t have  a mission, work on this first and foremost.  This will serve to guide you in your public relation's   goal of getting the word out about  your library.

   When doing PR, keep in mind the unique contribution that the library makes to the community, Your patrons ( and how they use the library)  and the many sources of information  that you have available .

  Your PR depends on theses items to five it focus and form.  Keeping this information in mind when determining how you will precede and carry out your PR and marketing plan.l

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Organizing your work! Organizing your office space!

I am a big fan of using three ring binders for organizing papers and materials needed on a day to day basis.  Every years I devised a plan book that goes along with y schedule for the year.. It is put in my main notebook which I use every day/ In this same notebook I keep a variety of papers and other items that I refer to on a daily basis.

    Another note book has records for ILL ( Inter library loans) and magazine/periodical records.  A large note book - which will soon be divided into two notebooks- is the common core standards.  In another note book I have my library curriculum for the different grade levels that I teach. A project I would like to do is put all lessons and worksheets for each grade level into a three ring binder, probably by grade level

    A current  large project is the yearly budget and the work  that goes with it.  This is in another labeled  binder. I keep handy the last years binder  to refer to.

     All my binders are labeled on the spine and of course on the front. I use tab dividers when I need too to keep all papers in the proper subject/ topic area. My binders are next to my work/circulation desk.  They can be pulled out and items found at a moments notice.  This binder system keeps me organized and my desk neat!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Blogging For libraries- Part 3

   Use your blog to inform patrons about library news, library events and programs, and exciting new books, magazines, and ebooks.

  The reason to use a blog  is that blogs are different because patrons can respond to  your posts and add their insights and opinions.  They can tell you what they think about what they are reading, what they like to read, what they would like to see at the library, and how they use their personal technology to read and obtain information.

  The key to getting responses to your posts is to have engaging , inviting, and inspiring posts that lead to patrons comments and responses. 

  Blogs can be a very good way for both libraries, librarians, and patrons to connect.  A blog can  lead to a great community feeling and more conversations about books, reading, and events.  Libraries can spread the news about everything that goes on. With a blog , there can be great ability to bridge the conversation gap, get to know the [patrons, and showcase all that happens at your library.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Blogging for Libraries- Factors

   When you are beginning a library blog, there are a few factors to consider before starting .  Doing this first planning session will make your blogging easier. Your blog will be tighter and more interesting.

   First of all , determine the purpose of your blog.  What is your focus or main reason for writing and promotion   your blog.

  Secondly, decide who will write the posts, and who will monitor and proof read the entries,  It is a great idea to have several staffers who will contribute to the information and post. That way there is not just one person responsible and  burn out will be greatly reduced.

    Determine which blogging platform you will use. Using a free platform will virtually  eliminate the cost of  to the library.

  Also consider the amount of time that the  staffers will need to write their posts. You might want them to have a specific time to work, or possible just use downtime during the slow parts of the workday.  Determine how many posts per week will be published.  It is a great  idea to have posts waiting ('in the wings') and just have someone go in and publish  on the determined day. ( This is what I like to do- have  a bunch all written and I just publish them on a regular day)

   Finally , begin with a list of specific topics, themes, or article ideas. Any of the staff can recommend  ideas to throw in the "post " pile of ideas.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

We Read/ Revish Reviews,

 WEREAD is a website that has been produced to assist adults ( Parents, teachers and Librarians)  to encourage youth and children to find the joy of reading and writing.  
   This site is free and one of its goals is to make reading more fun , stimulating, and enjoyable.On the left hand side of the page are links related  articles on reading, links to free  reading sites, book ideas for planning reading sessions, reading skills that students need. a parents group, and a link to reading groups.  
    One of the most helpful links is literacy and parenting resources. This leads to many links that will educate parents  about the importance of reading and writing.
   The best link , I think, is the 'Free Kids Books' .  This leads to sites where student can  actually read books online.

   Revish Review is another site that has great content . On Revish ,users can read and write book reviews, keep a list of books they are reading  Users can also participate in book discussions with other readers and reviewers.  Guidelines to writing reviews are green.  They look for meaningful reviews that help others decide if they will read and like the book reviewed.


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Organizing your office - Part 2

    What else can you do to keep your office and workspace organized? Here are a few more ideas to help you keep focused and organized for maximum efficiency. An organized office is very  conducive to getting a lot done.

   Phone Book

      Always keep a 'phone book' of names and numbers of colleagues . Keep this listing close to the phone so you do not have to search for a number when you need to make a quick call.  I keep mine in a listing in a clear plastic page protector. It is pinned on the bulletin board that is where the phone is located.
      I also have this listing on a computer file, so if I need to update some one's number , I can quickly fix the number and print out a new list.
     A similar page I have pinned next to this one, is a listing of teachers and administrators extension numbers. This way I can quickly find a number if I need to call a classroom.
      If you have a speed dial phone, keep your most used numbers on it.  You may also want to keep a printed listing of what numbers you have on speed dial.

    Business Cards

     If you have a collection of business cards from vendors, only keep the ones that you actually do with business with, or hope to do business with.  One way to organize these is in a rotary card file. Other way would be to use a three ring binder, and get a plastic business card holder.  Since I am a big fan of organizing with notebooks this is my favorite way to go.

    You could also scan your cards into a computer file for your desktop.  Just remember to mark it accordingly so that you can find it quickly.

Monday, March 17, 2014


    The slogan for Bookish is Discover More Books!  And you really can on this easy to use site- another Social Media site for Book lovers!

     Type in a book you love and you can get recommendations for other books that you will like to read.   Search for your favorite authors and favorite books.  Read book related articles, exclusive reading list, and video interviews.

     On this site you can also find and search by  genres s, There is a pull down tab with many genres.
You can also discover the newest release on this site.   Also sign  up for their Newsletter which is free and delivered to you email.

     Look at their list of BESTS and read samples of some of the newest books, This site is also a place where you can link purchasing the books that  you want to read.

     I like to browse through and see what are the newest items  that have been published.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Using a Blog to promote your Library

      A library blog ( which can be attached to your website or as a stand alone) , is a great way to continuously promote your libraries ( school, public, academic) resources , services, and event.Blogs can be used on its own or in addition to an electronic or print newsletter.

   There are many advantages of writing a library blog, First of  all the work may be shared , there can be more than one author.  The content of blogs can be archived and search able.

  The best advantage is that patrons and readers can comment and post about the content. There can be posts on book review, events, displays, and musings. There can be pictures of the library and events, and the staff.   A blog forms a community of interested persons.

    A blog posts the information immediately, so you can advertise something new and important. Blog software is easy to use and most of the time free.( Free is great for all libraries!)
The software  makes it easy to change design and layout to keep readers interested.

  So consider why you may want a library blog, who will help with it ( writing's, photos, pod casts) and how often your blog will have new posts.

   More to follow next week, on other factors to consider on having a library blog.