May 27, 2016

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Debut Author Meredith Russo on Trans Teens in YA Lit and “If I Was Your Girl”

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SLJ chats with debut author Meredith Russo about her first book for teens If I Was Your Girl, what librarians can do about North Carolina’s controversial HB2 law, and the ups and downs of being a published author.

A Voice of One’s Own | Editorial

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A great teacher can make all the difference. When it came to writing, for me that teacher was Linda Harter, who taught English, composition, and drama at my high school in Wallace, ID. I reached out to thank her, reminisce, and learn more about her teaching life—and gained perspective on her approach to teaching and a deeper appreciation of her work.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

An Open Letter to School Boards Everywhere

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School libraries are popping up that are fully, even lavishly, equipped, save for one thing: a certified school librarian. Here, one New Jersey librarian explains why that can never work. Ever.

Presentation Tools Worthy of the Content | Consider the Source

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Looking at some of the new software, it’s clear that the grammar of picture books is becoming a design structure that applies to effective presentations.

Courting Controversy? | Scales on Censorship

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Assigning a recently challenged book; teachers’ political views; classroom book selection policies.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

The Three Faces of the Bologna Book Fair

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The atmosphere at the International Bologna Children’s Book Fair was electric. Clearly, though, there were three simultaneous fairs taking place, and their story lines aren’t identical. Here’s a guided tour.

SLJ Webcomic Exclusive: “Economy of Form” by Melanie Gillman

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SLJ presents an original webcomic by “As the Crow Flies” creator Melanie Gillman starring Charlie, a queer 13-year-old girl, and her friend Mei.

SLJ Reviews LEGO WeDo 2.0

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The second-gen robotics system teaches STEM concepts to elementary students.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

The Best Early-Learning Blogs | First Steps

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Blogs about flannelboards, rhymes, and creative play are among Lisa Kropp’s top picks.

This article was published in School Library Journal's March 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Thinking Hyperlocal | Editorial

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The concept of “hyperlocal” is challenging me to think afresh about what a community is made of—and how we approach service design when we see what’s needed by unique parts of our constituencies.

This article was published in School Library Journal's April 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

He Said What? Making Sense of the Presidential Campaign

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Every day seems to bring a new “I-can’t-believe-that-just-happened” moment in the election campaigns. What can a school library offer? Context.

Happy 10th Birthday, Twitter. Love, @sljournal.

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A few random Tweets from the vault. Launched in 2007, we’ll claim OG bragging rights on Twitter. Seriously, it’s been a fun ride.

The Evolution of Summer Reading | Editorial

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Where summer reading works well, it places the library in a student’s learning life during vacation. Combine its goals with hands-on STEM-based programming, and you’ve met summer learning.

This article was published in School Library Journal's March 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Translation Blues | Consider the Source

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Why is it that publishers downplay the fact that some of their books have been translated? It’s time for them—and librarians—to help international books to strut their stuff—to become visible introductions to ways of thinking, seeing, and feeling that expand our sense of what it is to be alive in the world.

Wonderful news! The launch of the Open eBooks app for your children in need

Some wonderful news!  First Lady Michelle Obama’s video below announces a significant new initiative designed to address the challenge of providing children living in low income households with equitable access to digital reading materials. Open eBooks, is a free app, offering thousands of popular and award-winning titles, available without checkout or cost.  It targets all […]

The Joys of a Good Book (Battle, That Is)| Editorial

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SLJ’s Battle of the Kids’s Books (BOB)—our feverish, book-based version of college basketball’s March Madness playoffs—pits 16 middle grade and YA books against one another over four rounds of matches, culminating in one winner crowned on March 30.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Assessing Controversial Books | Scales on Censorship

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Should libraries that already purchased books based on their starred reviews keep or withdraw them because of subsequent controversies?

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Many Colleges Are Ignoring the SAT. Does Prep Still Matter?

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As students prepare to take the new SAT test on March 5, debates about the rationale for student testing continue—while librarians still want to help students prepare.

You Don’t Show the Sweet Without the Bitter | Up for Debate

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I understand small moments of joy on a page, like a slave receiving a Christmas present, because I can place those stories into a broad landscape and see them as the exception, not the norm. You have to earn hopeful stories about horrifying events, and you can only see what hope means if the horrors lurking nearby are visible

We Will Continue to Raise Our Voices: Survival, Slavery, Censorship | Up for Debate

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This ‘shocking and unprecedented case of self-censorship’ was, in fact, an editorial decision. The publishing industry makes thousands of them every day. They happen in response to many factors, including outside pressure, personal bias, and money. This decision happened after many voices were raised opposing the book, led by Black Lives Matter activist Leslie Mac.