I have wondered on this blog before if there is an over-emphasis on the summer library program in our preparation time and system CE offerings. With all the many issues we contend with, is it worth one. whole. workshop. annually (the only youth-oriented workshop some systems offer) to delve into what is an expected annual happening at libraries of every size?
My hard-working colleagues who are system level planners sometimes share my ambivalence. But they are responding to real-world requests from their system member libraries to always have a SLP-oriented workshop.
Is there any way to change this conversation at the grass-roots level among librarians? Is there a way - in our linked and networked world - to do an annual webinar shared by many systems with supporting documentation or blog posts or a shared wiki or space for ideas? In-person workshops could then be focused on other topics of interest/need for youth librarians.
Perhaps I'm dreaming and the demand for SLP workshop is inexorable and inevitable. If it can't be changed, can it at least model what more system workshops are starting to do - have only an hour or two devoted to SLP and the rest to other vital subjects we youth folks need more information or ideas on?
Subjects focusing on:
- Tween programs
- Outreach strategies to schools during the school year
- Creative tours
- Introducing digital content into programs/rooms
- Non-traditional programming models (stealth/DIY/unprogramming)
- Collection development tips
- Managing patron behaviors in youth areas
- Programming for special populations
- Teen programs
- Collaboration models both within the library and out in the community
- Strategic program planning
- Advocacy for youth services
- Preschool programming beyond storyime
- Incorporating STEAM/STEM
- Any of three dozen issues I see questions about on listservs, Twitter, Facebook groups
Can we get into those big SLP pants and see beyond these short eight weeks? What do you think?
Graphic courtesy of Pixabay