Online Learning Archive

Engage! Teens, Art & Civic Participation: An Introduction

The Engage! Teens, Art & Civic Participation webinar series will introduce a program model that targets young adults, using visual art as a springboard to civic engagement. Originally piloted in ten Illinois libraries in 2010, Engage! Teens, Art & Civic Participation is an activity- and discussion-based program model featuring a selection of curated and compelling images of American art.

During these three free webinars, participants will:

  • Hear from librarians who participated in the Engage! pilot program, who will share what worked and what didn’lt with teens.
  • Be introduced to a free PDF guide to the Engage! model, featuring detailed instructions on how to get started.
  • Learn how to formulate effective “looking questions” that will elicit participation and engagement with art and thematic content.
  • Learn how to select images that will illuminate relevant civic participation issues for teen discussion and learning.

Please be sure to register for all three sessions. This project was inspired by the National Endowment for the Humanities’l Picturing America project. Funding for Engage! is provided by the Searle Funds at the Chicago Community Trust and from the Terra Foundation for American Art.

In this first session, learn more about this program model for young adults that uses visual art as a springboard to civic engagement. Two librarians who participated in the pilot project—Marcus Lumpkin, Youmedia, Chicago Public Library; and Tom Spicer, Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library—shared their programs and how they can be adapted for other libraries; in addition, a free project resource guide was debuted during this webinar.


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Using Webisodes to Take Your Teen Programming to Them, Where They Are, When They Are!

As high school librarians, we know that the students aren’t always “tuned in” to library programming during school hours, so we’ve taken our programming to them where they are, when they are … online! Using humor and parody the librarian team of Mr. Heck and Mrs. Darnay created the webisode style series, “DarnitalltoHeck,“ to deliver reader’s advisory, book talks, library contests, special events, and more. By going to where the students “live” and allowing them access to our programming on their schedule, we not only increased our library circulation and visitations, but we also created an unexpected aura of celebrity to the librarians!

Webinar participants will gain ideas for creating thematic scripts to tie the webisodes together; learn about the technology used to create the videos and to post online; and discover the benefits beyond the students by using these videos for advocacy of your library program to the administration/stakeholders.

Speakers: Lena Darnay, School Librarian Pike High School Freshman Center, former music industry advertising executive, current adjunct professor of information literacy in the College of Ed at Butler University, Indianapolis. Chad Heck, School Librarian at Pike High School 10–12 Campus, former technology trainer for Pike Township Schools, current law student at Indiana University, Indianapolis.

Registration: $25 for ALA members; $35 for nonmembers; $140 for group.

Digital Littles at the Library: Teaching Digital Literacy

The Indianapolis Public Library has developed a hands-on technology lab for early learners to develop literacy skills in a technology based environment. The Digital Littles lab contains technology tools such as cameras, video cameras, and laptops that assist librarians in developing storytimes and other activities. The mobile lab is designed to travel mostly to library locations, but can also be transported to schools, day cares, and other organizations. The lab is the library’s way of reaching out to the community and making technology more accessible.

Webinar participants gained a better understanding about how to develop activities that combine storytelling and technology for early learners. Targeting promotion of the lab and maintaining a collaborative relationship with schools, daycares, and other organizations is necessary to the success of the programs. Participants also learned more about the logistics of acquiring and maintaining a digital mobile lab.

Speakers: Raylene Jordan is a Librarian and lead Program Specialist for the Learning Curve at Central Library, a high-tech area of the library that creates and models new ways of introducing children to technology and its uses at the library. She has worked with the library to develop activities in the Learning Curve since it became a reality in 2007. Abby Brown has a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education. She has taught children in public schools, developed programs at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum, and worked at the Indianapolis Public Library as an Early Literacy Specialist coordinating early childhood programming.

Fee: $25 for ALA members; $35 for nonmembers; $140 for group.

Let’s Talk About It: The National Model for Scholar-Led Reading and Discussion

For more than thirty years, hundreds of libraries across the country have engaged their communities by offering “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion programs. Find out how from an LTAI state-level coordinator and twenty-four-year veteran! Webinar attendees were offered an overview of the model, tips for recruiting and working with a scholar, and access to an archive of ready-to-present program content on more than thirty themes.

Using tumblr to Support Library Programming

Tumblr is a free, micro-blog hosting platform that allows users to easily interact with each other by sharing different types of multimedia. In this webinar, Erin Shea, Head of Adult Programming at Darien (Conn.) Library, and Rachel Fershleiser, Literary Community Organizer at tumblr, demonstrated how to use tumblr to network with publishers, bookstores, other library professionals, and authors to put your library on the map and share and collaborate with like-minded tumblr users.

Who Are We?: An Award-winning Humanities Program Model for School Libraries

Francis Feeley, school librarian at the Inter-American Magnet School, Chicago, and winner of the 2012 Sara Jaffarian Award, will present his winning model for humanities programming in the school library. The program, titled “Who Are We?,” challenged seventh- and eighth-grade students to explore the individual and collective behavior of human beings in the past and present in a series of quarterly research projects. Following the presentation, Feeley will discuss elements of his award application that lead to his selection, and give tips to prospective applicants to help get their applications started. Sponsored by the ALA Cultural Communities Fund.


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Using the Picturing America Program in Public Libraries

Nancy Davenport, Director of Library Services at the District of Columbia Public Library (DCPL), shares her experiences with using the Picturing America program within the DC library system.

Prior to joining DCPL, Nancy held multiple senior leadership positions with the Library of Congress. Nancy has served as President of the Council on Library and Information Resources, and as a Board member of the National Information Standards Organization, the American Library Association, the Digital Library Federation, the National Humanities Alliance, and the US National Committee for UNESCO.


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Picturing America Promotion: Reaching Library Staff and Community Groups

Nancy Davenport, Director of Library Services at the District of Columbia Public Library (DCPL), will share her experiences coordinating Picturing America programs within the DC library system. Nancy will share tips for empowering staff to use the collection as a basis for public programming, as well as creating partnerships with schools, community organizations, and local funding agencies.

Prior to joining DCPL, Nancy held multiple senior leadership positions with the Library of Congress. Nancy has served as President of the Council on Library and Information Resources, and as a Board member of the National Information Standards Organization, the American Library Association, the Digital Library Federation, the National Humanities Alliance, and the US National Committee for UNESCO.


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Picturing America and the Art of Perception: Reconsidering How We See

Amy Herman, Director of Educational Development at Thirteen/WNET, demonstrated her methodology of improving observation, perception, and communication skills by learning to analyze works of art using the Picturing America images. In this highly participatory session for librarians, Amy engaged participants in a dialogue about looking at art and how to make Picturing America images accessible to audiences who do not have formal art historical training.


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Outreach Opportunity for Academic Libraries: Bridging Cultures Bookshelf

Learn how to plan engaging programs about Islamic culture and submit a successful proposal for the ALA/NEH collection development grant, the Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys. Attendees will hear from seasoned programming librarians about their prior experiences conducting thematic programs that reach beyond the campus community, inspire partnerships with community organizations, and raise the library’s visibility. The webinar also included a Q&A period to address questions about the Bookshelf application process, as well as information about upcoming cash awards that will support reading and discussion programs featuring the Muslim Journeys materials. Speakers: Sandy Marcus, Queensborough Community College of CUNY; Sara Marks, UMass Lowell O’Leary Library; Tammy Sayles, Western Illinois University. Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the ALA Cultural Communities Fund.


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