February 20, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Professional Reading: July 2012

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KEANE, Nancy J. 101 Great, Ready-to-Use Book Lists for Teens. 264p. bibliog. CIP. Libraries Unlimited. 2012. pap. $40. ISBN 978-1-61069-134-5. LC 2011051428.
Meant to serve as a continuation of The Big Book of Teen Reading Lists (Libraries Unlimited, 2006), Keane’s new volume presaents another giant compilation of YA materials. All titles listed were published prior to August 2011. The book is divided into seven parts that are subdivided into themed lists such as “Genres,” “Readalikes,” and “Teaching Literary Elements.” The themes are well rounded and include interesting and timely topics such as “Romance,” “Autism & Asperger’s Syndrome,” “Different Belief Systems,” and “Crossing the Border.” Each entry includes the title, author, publisher, publication date, page numbers, an annotation, Lexile level when available, and interest level by grade or age range. As is evident by the title, Keane has packed a dense number of lists into the book, and their appeal is broad. The contents likely include selections for every type of reader and something for even the pickiest among them. This volume is a valuable addition for librarians looking to brush up their professional collection and can also serve as a browsable title for teens.–Adrienne L. Strock, Maricopa County Library District, AZ

MORRIS, Vanessa Irvin. The Readers’ Advisory Guide to Street Literature. 168p. appendix. bibliog. index. websites. CIP. ALA. 2012. pap. $48. ISBN 978-0-8389-1110-5. LC 2011029685.
Morris sets out to help public and school librarians gain an understanding of the content and history of street lit. In her introduction, she reiterates the need for this literature wherever there is demand, whether the collection is for teen or adult readers. She calls for librarians to be both knowledgeable about the genre and to be readers of it, and advocates for them not to judge or dismiss its fans. Morris sets the record straight that street lit is about more than drug dealers and domestic violence. It focuses primarily on African American characters and is about life and survival in inner-city, lower-income areas. She compares the genre to other early survival-story novels such as Daniel Defoe’s Moll Flanders and Charles Dickens’s A Tale of Two Cities. She suggests series titles, individual titles, both fiction and nonfiction, and lists a few Christian teen-friendly series. The book discusses the appeal, characteristics, the structure of the genre, and mentions themes and subgenres, YA recommendations, and tips for selection and readers’ advisory. In this comprehensive book, Morris provides excellent input to aid in collection development and includes a list of publishers.–Adrienne L. Strock, Maricopa County Library District, AZ

NELSON, Jennifer. Technology and Literacy: 21st Century Library Programming for Children and Teens. 144p. bibliog. diags. further reading. illus. websites. CIP. ALA. 2012. pap. $50. ISBN 978-0-8389-1108-2. LC 2011035104.
This valuable and useful guide for creating and implementing technology-based programming in public libraries is adaptable for school settings. Beginning chapters explain and present a plan for offering such programs, providing steps on how to execute them based on actual projects from 2006 to 2010 supported by grant funds. The author explains the value of this type of programming and the process involved with adoption, and covers planning, gathering support from both administration and staff, marketing, locating and training volunteers, age-group focus, managing time, etc. Projects introduced in chapter six are based on the use of the open-source software called Scratch. Within this extensive chapter and the accompanying appendix, numerous templates and tables cover commands and terminology, how to create animation step-by-step, gaming, project ideas, etc. Particulars regarding hardware and software include criteria for using a laptop, desktop, or mixed hardware; additional items such as scanners, microphones, projectors, digital cameras, etc.; and other available open-source software to supplement a Scratch workshop. Helpful screen shots aid those new to the software. The final chapter includes a useful checklist of resources and additional materials.–Susan Shaver, Hemingford Public Schools, NE

REID, Rob. What’s Black and White and Reid All Over?: Something Hilarious Happened at the Library. 175p. appendix. bibliog. index. CIP. ALA. 2012. pap. $45. ISBN 978-0-8389-1147-1; ebook $36. ISBN 978-0-8389-9404-7. LC 2011043233.
This is a companion to Reid’s Something Funny Happened at the Library (ALA, 2003). The first two parts provide 10 humorous story programs–five aimed at preschoolers and five for school-aged children (K-4). With minor tweaking, all of them can be adapted for either audience as well as for family programs. Each one provides read-aloud suggestions and movement activities. There are also great storytelling tips that include everything from how to hold the book to what props to use and how to use them to make the program as funny as possible. Reid also includes an additional list of titles that can be substituted, jokes, call-and-response chants, short storybooks, songs, and musical activities. The last part of the book is a bibliography of “The Funniest Books in Your Library.” Picture books, easy readers, graphic novels and manga, chapter books, poetry, folklore, and songbooks are included and a list of “Robbie Awards,” Reid’s picks for the funniest picture book and chapter book of the year from 2000 to 2010, rounds out this high-spirited resource.–Renee McGrath, Nassau Library System, NY

SCHEEREN, William O. The Hidden Web: A Sourcebook. 114p. bibliog. index. CIP. Libraries Unlimited. 2012. pap. $45. ISBN 978-1-59884-627-0; ebook $45. ISBN 978-1-59884-628-7. LC 2011042977.
This resource is written with the purpose of informing librarians, both public and school, of the many valuable sites that are not accessible by traditional search engines. Because quality online resources are essential for student research, knowing how to navigate the Web to access these sites ill help librarians with instructing and assisting students and patrons in the necessary search skills. The first three chapters describe what is known as the Invisible Web, explain why it performs better than standard search engines, and inform searchers when they will find value in the sites provided. In the remaining chapters, sites are categorized into sections such as art, magazine articles, business and economics, education, medicine, etc. Each site appears in boldface type followed by the URL, with a description taken from the site itself in many instances. The conclusion reiterates the need for proficient search skills in order to find these hidden resources and that, in spite of what many students believe, Google is not the only way to find information. A bibliography and extensive index conclude this straightforward, accessible guide to exemplary research.–Susan Shaver, Hemingford Public Schools, NE

Diversity and Cultural Competency Training: Collections & RA

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Do you want to become a more culturally literate librarian and a more effective advocate for your community?

We've developed a foundational online course—with live sessions on February 28 & March 14—that will explore key concepts essential to cultivating and promoting inclusive and equitable collections.