Family & Youth Programs

Family/Children’s Resources

ChilesAKA Children & Libraries en Español, this site is dedicated to bringing together children’s librarians who serve Spanish-speaking youth, but who do not speak Spanish themselves. This site is intended to be a resource—for best practices, ideas, inspiration, language—as well as a community where librarians can share ideas and resources with each other.

Every Child Ready to Read @ your library
The Public Library Association and the Association for Library Service to Children, have incorporated the latest research into a series of parent and caregiver workshops to provide public libraries with vital tools to help prepare parents for their critical role as their child’s first teacher. These tools were developed by Dr. Grover C. Whitehurst and Dr. Christopher Lonigan, well-known researchers in emergent literacy, and have been tested and refined by library demonstrations sites around the country.

Great Stories CLUB
The Great Stories CLUB is a reading and discussion program that targets underserved, troubled teen populations. The program reaches teens through books that are relevant to their lives, inviting them to read and keep the books, and encourages them to consider and discuss each title with a group of their peers. It seeks to show that reading can be a source of pleasure, a tool for self-exploration, and a meaningful way to connect to the wider world. Its ultimate goal is to inspire young adults who face difficult situations to take control of their lives by embracing the power of reading.

Martha Speaks Read-Aloud Book Club
Bring the excitement of Martha Speaks to your library! Drawing on the appeal of the popular television program and children’s book series by Susan Meddaugh, the Martha Speaks Read-Aloud Book Club creates a fun environment for young kids to read and talk about books, and to learn about the many positive roles dogs play in our lives. Brought to you by PBS Kids, the site includes event guides, promotional material, and online video.

PRIME TIME Family Reading Time
Created by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH) in 1991, PRIME TIME Family Reading Time is an award-winning reading, discussion, and storytelling series based on illustrated children’s books. PRIME TIME is designed specifically for under-served families with children aged 6 to 10. Pre-reading activities are also available for pre-school children aged 3 to 4. The program helps low-income, low-literacy families bond around the act of reading and talking about books. It models and encourages family reading and discussion of humanities topics, and aids parents and children in selecting books and becoming active public library users.

Movie Licensing USAAlthough the main purpose of the Movie Licensing USA site is to promote the company’s licensing services, it also includes movie programming ideas for The Big Read, summer reading, Banned Books Week, Teen Read Week, adult programs, and books to movies as well as a monthly calendar for planning films. Librarians can also download newsletters featuring programming ideas and articles written by librarians on their movie programs.

Teen Resources

Engage! Picturing America through Civic EngagementThis program targets young adult audiences through dynamic discussions that utilize the visual arts as springboards to civic engagement. Engage! was piloted in summer 2010 in eight Chicago Public Library branches and the YOUmedia center at Harold Washington Public Library; in fall 2010 by Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library; and in fall 2010 and spring 2011 at Evanston (Ill.) Public Library.

Graphic Novels: Resources for Teachers & Librarians
The web site is designed to introduce librarians (as well as teachers and parents) to the rich, diverse offerings from today's comics book publishers, and to encourage the acquisition of graphic novels in libraries serving young adults.
Offers book club information and guidelines for teens as well as number of discussion guides for teen reading.

General Youth Resources

EZ Library Programs Directory
Maintained by the Mid-Hudson Library System to provide program ideas to our member libraries and other organizations and individuals who may find it useful. Programming librarians can search for programs by topic, audience, program type, and cost. You can also submit your own program to the database.

Know Kidding
Youth services handbook developed for public librarians in Illinois. Of particular interest is the section on programming (PDF), which covers guidelines for quality service, planning, budgeting, and policymaking as well as sample contracts, checklists, and evaluation forms.

Picturing America
Picturing America, a initiative from the National Endowment for the Humanities, brings masterpieces of American art into classrooms and libraries nationwide. Through this innovative program, students and citizens will gain a deeper appreciation of our country’s history and character through the study and understanding of its art. The nation’s artistic heritage—our paintings, sculpture, architecture, fine crafts, and photography—offers unique insights into the character, ideals, and aspirations of our country.

Read Across America
NEA’s Read Across America is an annual reading motivation and awareness program that calls for every child in every community to celebrate reading on March 2, the birthday of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss. It also provides resources and activities to keep reading on the calendar 365 days a year. In cities and towns across the nation, teachers, teenagers, librarians, politicians, actors, athletes, parents, grandparents, and others develop NEA’s Read Across America activities to bring reading excitement to children of all ages.

We the People Bookshelf
The We the People Bookshelf, a collection of classic books for young readers, is a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities’ (NEH) We the People program, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office. Each year, NEH identifies a theme important to the nation’s heritage and selects books that embody that theme to build the We the People Bookshelf. The Bookshelf grants are part of the NEH’s We the People initiative, which aims to encourage and strengthen the teaching, study, and understanding of American history and culture through libraries, schools, colleges, universities, and cultural institutions.