Programming Programs at PLA

Being a programming librarian is hard work, but this year at the 2012 PLA National Conference in Philadelphia, you can learn a variety of new ways to offer your community outstanding and engaging programs. For those of you fortunate enough to attend this year, here is a list of PLA programs may want to fit into your schedule:

Thursday, March 15, 2012, 8:15–9:30 a.m.

  • Optimizing Author Visits: Key Steps to Planning and Promotion | Author visits are a great way for libraries to connect with their communities. This session will provide instructions for planning a successful author visit—choosing the right author; working with speakers’ bureaus, publishers, and bookstores; forming partnerships to promote your program; and transforming your facility into an event space.

  • Successful Summer Science Clubs for Children | Hands-on science in the library? You bet! Learn and share ways to make chemistry, horticulture, archeology, physics, ecology, and anatomy fun and exciting for children ages five to eleven.

Thursday, March 15, 2012, 10:45 a.m.–noon

  • Being the Best: Stories from the Best Small Libraries in America | What does it take to be an innovative library without a big budget or staff? Once you get there, how do you sustain that level of success? The 2008–2011 winners of Library Journal’s Best Small Library in America award will share stories about the innovative programs, partnerships, and services that helped their libraries rise to the top.

  • Every Child Ready to Read in Action | This program will present information on the Every Child Ready to Read (ECRR) workshop “Fun with Science and Math for Parents and Children.” A panel of librarians will share their experiences in using the updated ECRR toolkit.

  • Family Literacy Focus: Serving Diverse Communities through Innovative Library-based Programs | ALA Past President Camila Alire’s Family Literacy Focus initiative supports the development of innovative and sustainable library-based family literacy programs for Native American, Asian American, Pacific American, African American, Chinese American, and Latino communities. Family literacy activities are cultural resonant and include traditional storytelling, family reading nights, and nontraditional families.

  • Preschool Storytime Revisited | Since children learn best through repetition, a variety of stimuli activates different senses, and there are many ways to present a book, how about choosing one book to repeat in storytimes for six consecutive weeks, but presenting it differently each time?

  • Starting a Foreign Language Book Discussion Group in Your Community | Librarians at King County (Wash.) Library System started a book discussion in Chinese in order to reach out to its diverse community (41% foreign-born). This outreach program had unique challenges and rewards they could never have foreseen. Come learn the specific steps they took and learn how you, too, can reach out to this growing population.

Thursday, March 15, 2012, 2–3:15 p.m.

  • Collaborating with Child Care Providers: Everybody Wins @ your library | With more than 2.3 million child care providers, 11 million children under age five in child care settings, and thirty-eight states requiring no training in early childhood development before beginning work, the public library plays a key role in supporting common goals of strengthening early literacy in young children. How are libraries reaching child care providers? Get practical tips to enhance current services.

  • Engaging with Teens on a Shoestring Budget | No time, low or no budget, and limited staff don’t have to doom teen programs. Good ideas and creative thinking can increase usage of library resources, even among the hard-to-reach school-age market. Our panel of energetic librarians will share their stories on guerilla marketing of teen programs; teen programming on the cheap; launching an online homework help program; and branding a homework help program to drive usage.

  • Reaching In and Reaching Out: Library Programs for All | In this session, learn how to design and conduct programming for long-term care facility residents in your community.

  • Read/Watch/Discuss: Book and Film Programs in the Library | Public libraries have long known how popular book discussion groups and film screenings can be for patrons. Community members and library staff appreciate inexpensive, engaging, and entertaining programs. Combine these two activities for informative and stimulating discussions that enhance the combination of the reading and viewing experience.

Thursday, March 15, 2012, 4:15–5:15 p.m.

  • From Chic to Geek—How One Library Integrated Emerging Technologies into Traditional Programming. | The presenter will highlight and discuss how a middle-sized library in Ohio began integrating emerging technologies into traditional programs with minimum cost. We will discuss how to use the iPad to enhance story times, roving reference, and community walks; how to integrate Wordle with crafts programs, and many more.

  • Plan Once, Deliver Nineteen Times: A Centralized Programming Model | Facing budget reductions, staff at San Jose (Calif.) Public Library looked at their program delivery model and saw ways to streamline. The team of librarians and administrators figured out how to deliver relevant, community-specific programs via a central team who assembled program plans; listened to our front-line staff; created new partnerships; built Programs in a Box; and coordinated program delivery and evaluation.

  • Program-Palooza: 60 Programs in 60 Minutes! | Shopping for some fresh program ideas that require minimal staff effort and don’t break the bank? Trying to serve those niche populations, tweens, single seniors, twenty-somethings, new parents, and so on? You’ll find lots of inspiration and practical advice at this Program-Palooza.

  • Robotix Blox; Robotics Rocks!: Using Robotics in Youth Programming | Looking for a way to engage teens, tweens, kids, and students with special needs? Want to help girls succeed in STEM or dads connect with their sons? Robots may be your answer … and they’re not as scary as they look! We’ll explore how robotics programs build science and literacy skills and support youth developmental assets as well as how to structure your own program for maximum fun and learning.

  • Storytimes Outside the Box (and the Library) | Tired of the same old storytime? We’ll discuss how to shake things up by connecting children with the local community through creative partnering. Parks, art venues, backyards and revitalized downtowns are some of the local hot spots we’ve used for educational, adventurous and engaging children’s programs. Let’s inspire each other.

  • The alt+library: Designing Programs for a 20s–30s Audience | Sacramento Public Library provides unusual and attention-getting programming for people in their twenties and thirties. Marketing and promoting to this age group is key in library services yet often overlooked. Discuss the importance of this demographic for the library, how to develop enticing programs, and the benefits to your library.

  • Using the MGOL Method for Creating and Presenting Dynamic Early Literacy Programs | Using the model of the Mother Goose on the Loose early literacy program, explore scientific findings regarding child development, experience some of the activities from a Mother Goose on the Loose session, identify connections between the activities and their benefits, and learn how to easily plan and present your own successful early literacy programs using the structure, formula, and principals of Mother Goose on the Loose.

Friday, March 16, 2012, 8:15–9:30 a.m.

  • LEAP into Science: A Library-Museum Partnership to Promote Science and Literacy in Programs with Families | LEAP into Science combines expertise in science programming and youth literacy to develop a replicable model for engaging family workshops, specialized afterschool programs, and professional development for library staff. Examples of curriculum and models from new sites will be shared.

  • Social Networking, Gaming and | In 2010, Brooklyn Public Library, The New York Public Library, and Queens Library developed a groundbreaking summer reading website: The site introduced social networking profile pages, avatars, badges, media logs, gaming, and FUN to their online program. It also enabled staff at local branches to create their own unique games and badges customized for their own communities.

  • Successful Partnerships to Serve Immigrant Communities Today | Successful partnerships between an urban public library and non-profits to provide services tailored to meet the needs of today’s immigrant communities. Best practices, strategies, and lessons learned to provide financial, health, and citizenship services in languages spoken by the largest minority groups.

  • Young Adult Programs That Work | Share ideas for successful YA programs with colleagues from around the country. Find new ideas for libraries of any budget. Brainstorm ideas for programs that fit with this summer’s Collaborative Summer Library Program theme “Own the Night.”

Friday, March 16, 2012, 10:45 a.m.–noon

  • Adult Storytimes: Why Should the Kids Have All the Fun? | Following up on his presentation at PLA 2010 and article in Public Libraries, David Wright discusses adult storytimes with you. Considering a story time for grown ups at your library? Let’s talk. Already have one in place? Stop by and share your work, for a possible article.

  • Backstage Pass to Concerts at Your Library! | Since 2008 the “Live Music @ KPL” series has provided free concerts featuring mostly local and national recording artists to patrons in a unique listening room environment, with an average attendance of 125. The Ferndale Public Library hosts all-ages rock concerts each month featuring two bands from the Metro Detroit area. Learn how to craft an affordable concert series in which the musicians will perform, interact, and help promote the library’s collection.

  • Family Literacy on the Inside: Bringing the Public Library to Incarcerated Parents | More than 2.3 million adults are behind bars in the United States. That leaves roughly 1.5 million children with parents serving time. Libraries can help these families stay connected through simple, innovative literacy programs in area jails and prisons. Learn how to create, implement, and evaluate low/no cost family literacy programs in correctional facilities from New York Public Library and Brooklyn Public Library librarians working at Rikers Island.

  • Maximizing the Impact of Programming: Getting the Most from Your Efforts | Continually creating successful, community-engaging programs can be a struggle for even the most seasoned librarians. Listen to programming librarians from resort and suburban libraries talk about community partnerships and high-tech methods for reaching modern audiences, then learn from Tribeca Film Institute about how to secure independent films for your library.

Friday, March 16, 2012, 2–3:15 p.m.

  • Programs that Pack the Place: Successful Community Collaborations | Public programming delivers information and educational benefits, provides opportunities for outreach and collaboration, and enhances the library’s presence in the community. Learn about new trends and how to update current programs to attract new or underserved audiences. Experienced programmers will share how libraries produce successful programs without breaking the bank or burning out staff.

Friday, March 16, 2012, 4:15–5:15 p.m.

  • Serving Preschool-aged Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Their Families | For over a year, the Sherman Library—a joint-use, public/university library—has offered monthly storytime for preschoolers diagnosed with ASD. Librarians have trained with area ASD early-intervention educators and agency professionals in ASD.

Saturday, March 17, 2012, 8:30–9:45 a.m.

  • Books for Dessert: A Book Club for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities | Want to have a book discussion group whose participants are always enthusiastic, perceptive, and involved? Books for Dessert provides an opportunity for adults who are intellectually challenged to belong to and participate in a book discussion group, assisting each other in the reading, comprehending, and discussing of books.

  • Cuddle Up and Read: Storytimes for Pregnant and Parenting Teens | Learn about the Cuddle Up and Read storytimes conducted within the San Diego County Library and San Diego Public Library Systems. This presentation will provide a hands-on overview of the early literacy storytimes conducted with teen parents. Statistics will be included to show the impact the program had on the teen parents. Learn how to incorporate early literacy tools into your storytimes and how to start a storytime for teen parents in your community.

  • Get with the Program, Get Graphic: Using Graphic Novels for Programming for Teens! | Your library has shelves upon shelves of graphic novels and Manga. They are popular and go out a TON … why not capitalize on teens’ love for this format by creating innovative Outreach and programming? Come to this hilarious presentation (you’ll learn how to effectively lie to children through comics) and find ways to program with Manga you’ve never even dreamed of.

  • How to Get New Library Users … from Birth? Hold a Baby Shower! | Library-sponsored baby showers are an excellent opportunity to help reach out to new parents and to develop lifelong library users … from birth. During library baby showers parents are presented with information about early literacy and child development, and are connected with community agencies.

  • It Takes a Village to Raise a Reader: Creating Grant-worthy, Outcomes-Based Early Literacy Programs | Panelists will discuss how to determine what is needed to implement such a program, including budget, materials, and personnel required; learn about effective Outcome Based Evaluation (OBE) tools to satisfy grant requirements, which are key to achieving funding; and receive an overview of the outreach materials made available to the community in multiple languages.

Saturday, March 17, 2012, 10:15–11:30 a.m.

  • Building Strong Community Partnerships: Sno-Isle Libraries, the Teen Project, and the 40 Developmental Assets | In 2007, Sno-Isle Libraries embarked on The Teen Project, teaching staff to reach out into the community and develop relationships with other organizations. Dawn Rutherford, Teen Services Coordinator and Teen Project manager, will share how Sno-Isle approached this challenge utilizing the forty Developmental Assets and was better able to develop programs and services for teens.

  • Team Read-a-Book: Building Bridges to the Library for Kids Who Learn Differently | Sometimes kids and their families need a little help connecting to the library! Come prepared to learn about a partnership program that helps kids with learning disabilities and their families feel more comfortable within our library environments while developing successful reading and coping strategies! It’s a team effort!

  • What Public Libraries Can Do for Families Experiencing Homelessness | Families are the largest and fastest growing segment of the homeless population in the United States, but are not often discussed when libraries talk about homeless populations. This program will examine the causes of family homelessness in America and offer practical advice on how to create partnerships and programs to best serve families in your community experiencing homelessness.

If you can’t make it to PLA 2012, register for the PLA 2012 Virtual Conference on Thursday, March 15, and Friday, March 16. The Virtual Conference will include five hour-long programs each day, author interviews, poster sessions, and opportunities for networking. Just because you can’t go to Philadelphia doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all of the programming opportunities! As an added bonus, all Virtual Conference registrants will have access to the archived Virtual Conference programming for an entire year.