Pam Sandlian Smith’s ongoing reinvention of library service at the Anythink Libraries in Colorado shows what leadership exercised in a spirit of wonder and playfulness can achieve. John Hunter’s World Peace Game takes playing to a new level for learning. We can all learn from both.
The Art of the Caldecott: At 75, the powerful award keeps proving the value of librarians’ expertise | Editorial
First, consider the numbers. Some 37,000 children’s and YA books have been published in 2012, according to Bowker. SLJ reviewed more than 6,500 of them—thanks to our corp of 300 active reviewers in the field. Of these titles, 289 earned stars. And here, in the final presentation, are the 65 that were selected as SLJ’s Best Books of 2012.
How they get identified is not a math problem, of course. Passions run high. There’s a talented team behind this list, packed [...]
Action figures don’t usually weigh in on SLJ’s design, but Flash, the iconic DC Comics superhero, zipped into the story this month. He snuck his way into my purse and then onto my desk just as editors Kathy Ishizuka and Rick Margolis and I talked about our cover strategy with art director Mark Tuchman. Flash didn’t say much, but his force was unstoppable.
Our conversation about the findings of SLJ’s 2012 school library tech [...]
The Tension of Innovation: The bridges to the future must be built for the kids of today | Editorial
As SLJ’s editors roll up our sleeves in final preparation for our annual Leadership Summit, in Philadelphia, October 26-27 (www.sljsummit2012.com), and our “Digital Shift: Libraries, Ebooks and Beyond” online event on October 17 (www.thedigitalshift.com/beyondebooks), I’m inspired by both the big ideas in education and the ground-level work I’ve seen in school libraries across the country.
I’m also aware of the vast challenges we face as we strive to give our kids the best educational experience possible. A recent [...]
What happens when you comingle 80 or so librarians for some eight hours and give them just enough structure to focus on key issues? Answer: KidLibCamp. I expected this unconference at Darien (CT) Library, on August 16, to be good, but it was so much better than that. It was professional learning at its best—the kind of inspiring event that ought to be replicated in every system and district in the country.
I got a chill listening to Walter Dean Myers describe the decline in literacy he has witnessed in his decades of working with incarcerated males. It used to be, he said in his keynote address at SLJ’s Day of Dialog in June, that he could tell what grade kids were in by the quality of the writing in their letters to him, but not anymore. He would also see kids in detention who were functionally illiterate, but now [...]