Monday, November 30, 2009

North Middle School Library hosts holiday gift giveaway

According to school librarian Arlette Schweitzer, Rapid City’s North Middle School Library will hold the Fourth Annual Gift Giveaway during the 2009 holiday season. New and used items for all ages are gathered throughout the year, everything from toys to coffee pots. The program provides a great opening for people to hunt up those items in their homes that they never use or don’t need—bath soaps, perfume, aftershave, pictures, dishes—anything and everything that could make a gift for someone. The new or gently-used items are placed under a Christmas tree and many names are drawn each day for students to choose a gift. Small, decorated Christmas trees are very popular and tend to go first. The library’s goal is to have enough gifts for each student to have the opportunity to choose something. Schweitzer says students, many of them from economically-disadvantaged environments, almost always choose something to wrap and take home as a gift for a family member.

Originally published at

More resources in the news

Library 101 Project by Michael Porter and David Lee King

ACRL 2008 Statistical Summaries

Best Free Reference Websites 2009

Choices Booklists from the International Reading Council

Complete Guide to Twitter

The Exquisite Corpse Adventure: online progressive story by famous children’s authors

TechSoup: Should you upgrade to Windows 7?

SD Office of Emergency Management has some free publications. Here’s the Winter Weather Preparedness bookmark (PDF).

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What are classes reading at your school?

We know that individual students of all ages are reading for a variety of reasons and in a variety of formats. But what’s happening with class novels, literature circle titles and other classroom assigned reading? Are we “killing ‘em with classics” or creating lifelong readers and learners? Take a look at the way this teacher integrated the reading of the classic Treasure Island into a global project on digital piracy: “Putting the Nerdy Teacher Back in the Classroom - Let Project Based Learning Begin” Making Teachers Nerdy blog.

YALSA Teens’ Top Ten list announced

book cover of paper towns by John Green - image used with permission from
Teen readers across the country chose Paper Towns by John Green as their favorite book in the annual Teens’ Top Ten vote, sponsored by the Young Adult Library Services Association. Teens cast more than 11,000 votes online between Aug. 24 and Sept. 18, with the official list announced during Teen Read Week, Oct. 18-24.

The 2009 Teens’ Top Ten are:

  1. Paper Towns by John Green
  2. Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
  3. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  4. City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare
  5. Identical by Ellen Hopkins
  6. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
  7. Wake by Lisa McMann
  8. Untamed by P.C. and Kristin Cast
  9. The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
  10. Graceling by Kristin Cashore

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Monday, November 23, 2009

Positive reading messages for students in Aberdeen

READ poster of elementary principal
When Dr. Lila Morris, librarian for Aberdeen’s public elementary schools, sought a method for conveying a positive reading message to students, she prevailed upon the various schools’ principals to demonstrate their participation in that message by posing for pictures with favorite books in their hands. After having a local photo shop produce 20 x 30-inch posters from the resulting pictures, Morris displayed each principal’s poster prominently in his or her school building. She says the project wasn’t all that expensive, at only about $30.00 per poster.

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Consumer health resources that can help!

By Fran Rice, Executive Director, Health Connect of South Dakota (MHSA, MSLIS)

In a time when everything in the world is a little topsy-turvy, it is important to feel empowered about the one thing we can usually control and that is ourselves. According to the Healthy People 2010 Library Initiative recently published American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) report, The Challenge of Providing Consumer Health Information Services in Public Libraries (2009), “one of the biggest challenges today’s librarians face is an insatiable consumer demand for health information.”

Superintendent Willard is 2009 SDLA Friend of the Library

Superintendent Steve Willard of the Belle Fourche School District is the recipient of the 2009 South Dakota Library Association Friend of the Library Award. Willard was presented with this honor at the SDLA annual awards banquet held in Aberdeen on Oct. 8.

Key points from The Teenage Brain & Teens in the Library

At the SDLA Annual Conference this year the State Library sponsored a pre-conference on the teenage brain and teens in the library. Dr. Sheryl Feinstein from Augustana College in Sioux Falls spoke to participants on how the teenage brain develops, how the teen brain affects their behavior and how at-risk lifestyle choices can take a toll on a teen’s brain. The following are a few of Feinstein’s key points to understanding the teens around you:

  • For both boys and girls, puberty can last up to age 24.
  • Peer influence peaks at ninth grade.
  • Only 1 percent of what comes into our brains (regardless of age) stays.
  • When we learn something new our brain creates a “dendrite.” As adults, we lose 1-3 percent of our dendrites each year, but teens lose an average of 15 percent.
  • A portion of the brain called the amygdala is where emotions come from. Testosterone agitates the amygdala.
  • Emotions are the gateway to learning and understanding reading instruction. Libraries are in a unique position to promote this.

Lisa Oldoski presented in the afternoon on library services to teens. She is currently the Collection Services Librarian at Pierce County Library System in the state of Washington. Her ideas were very practical and participants walked away with some helpful ideas to try in their own libraries. Highlights from the presentation include:

  • Do outreach with your enemies because you probably have more in common with them than you think.
  • If you have any staff members who are very anti-teen, try to find something they like to do or are good at, then pair them with a teen who also likes that thing. Making teens human breaks down walls.
  • Anything you or another staff member likes can be manipulated into a teen program. Examples include crosswords (make a giant one for a wall), have a puzzle competition, or rock climbing (if you can’t afford to have a wall brought in teach them how to tie knots).
  • For heaven’s sake, decorate their space and let them be the creative influence!

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Monday, November 16, 2009

Senior citizen programming ideas from across the state

The State Library recently posted a question to the Public Library Listserv soliciting ideas for senior citizen programming. Here is what librarians across the state suggested. If you have other ideas to share, please contact Brenda Hemmelman (email).

  • "Host a rural school presentation/program"
  • "Senior centers are always asking for programs, so they might be a good place to ask for advice. Maybe even bring the first program to the center. For example: quilting"
  • "A few years back I contacted our local nutrition center and asked if they would bus the senior citizens to the library for an hour. It worked out well. We set aside a time for just their use and they enjoyed the quiet and time to just browse the book stacks."
  • "Host a storytelling event. One example was from a librarian who featured the Black Hills Storytellers with music by the French Creek Folk."
  • "Have spring and fall book discussions and history groups meet in the meeting room."
  • "Lunch & Learn Lectures: the library provides lunch and brings in a speaker of interest"
  • "Healthcare/Medicare Issues: there are agencies sponsored by some counties that actually teach people how to register for Medicare and walk them through the online setup."
  • "Host a program on some sort of health issue, flu shots, diet planning, or anything related to aging would be good. If a community has a community health nurse, they are usually willing to talk about things without charging."
  • "Offer medical information classes. Bring in a nurse, doctor, physical therapist, or nutritionist who can talk about diabetes, arthritis, being fit and retired… something to that nature."
  • "Host a quilting group that meets regularly at the library"
  • "Movie Time: show National Geographic videos/DVDs, South Dakota tourism type videos/DVD’s, any travel video/DVD, or movie classics."
  • "Ask library trustees to offer suggestions for programs."
  • "Offer a china painting class, computer skills class, knitting class and incorporate Debbie Macomber type of reading books."
  • "We hosted an ethnic cooking series, co-sponsored with a local museum and natural food store."
  • "Offer basic Internet communications classes from setting up and checking e-mail to possibly starting Facebook accounts so that they can see pictures of family, etc."
  • "Host genealogy workshops using, Heritage Quest and setting up social accounts on"
  • "For additional suggestions, see the Program Workbook handout at College of DuPage Press."

What is readers’ advisory?

Readers’ advisory is assisting patrons of all ages with choosing popular and recreational reading, viewing and listening choices. It’s about books and much more. It’s helping the patron find something when they only have a vague idea of what it is that they want. So how do you do this? Try these three steps to get started.

Resources: Automation, Technology and more

Library Automation Resources

Biblio Tech (wayback machine capture)
Provides the latest news about the library automation industry.

Internet Library for Librarians
A list of some automation vendors.

Library Journal.
The April issue provides an annual review of the library automation market.

Library Technology Guides.
Maintained by Marshall Breeding. Key resources in the field of library automation.

Perceptions 2008: An International Survey of Library Automation. (wayback machine capture)
A survey of some of the automation systems available.

Technology Plan Resources

Ricker, Y. (2008, September). TechAtlas for Libraries: Technology Planning Guide. WebJunction PDF

Butcher, P. (2009, March). Writing goals and objectives for a technology plan. WebJunction (wayback machine capture)

Automation Vendors


Basics of Library Automation. (2009, Oct. 20). Denver, CO: Colorado State Library. Retrieved October 23, 2009 from World Wide Web: (wayback machine capture)

Kroski, E. (2006, March) How to Automate a Small Library. WebJunction, (wayback machine capture)

Schultz-Jones, B. (2006). An Automation Primer for School Library Media Centers and Small Libraries. Worthington, OH: Linworth Books.

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Popular young adult novel made into movie

book cover of The Lovely Bones - image used with permission from

Critically acclaimed and best-selling young adult novel The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold has been adapted into a feature film. The film, set to be released Jan.15, 2010, is directed by Peter Jackson with the screenplay written by Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens. All three won Oscars for their respective work on the Lord of the Rings trilogy movie adaptations. To see a trailer for the movie go to

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Monday, November 9, 2009

What are we reading?

book cover of A Duty to the Dead by Charles Todd -- image used with permission by
Patsy Kringel is reading A Duty to the Dead: a Bess Crawford Mystery by Charles Todd. The story opens on a hospital ship in the Mediterranean, where Bess Crawford works as a nurse during World War I. She was asked by a dying soldier to deliver a message to his brother. The message and the unusual way the brother receives this message leaves Bess with an unsettled feeling and the mystery begins to unfold, complicated by the very unusual family dynamics of the family of the dead soldier. This is the first book in the Bess Crawford series. "I will definitely be waiting for the next!" exclaims Kringel. Charles Todd (a mother-son writing team) also has 11 books in the Ian Rutledge series which also take place in England right after World War I and Kringel highly recommend them too.

Other titles now being read by Library Development staff include:

  • 13 ½ by Nevada Barr
  • The Angel Whispered Danger by Mignon F. Ballard
  • Bad Boys of the Black Hills and Some Wild Women, Too by Barbara Fifer
  • The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson
  • The Family Band: From the Missouri to the Black Hills, 1881-1900 by Laura Bower Van Nuys
  • Fire by Kristin Cashore
  • The Free Bards by Mercedes Lackey
  • Going Bovine by Libba Bray
  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • A Lion Called Christian by Anthony Bourke, John Rendall and George Adamson
  • Pillage by Obert Skye
  • Splendor (Luxe Series #4) by Anna Godbertson
  • Two Old Women by Velma Wallis

And titles now being listened to in audiobook format include:

  • The Boomerang Clue by Agatha Christie
  • Defending Angels: A Beaufort & Company Mystery by Mary Stanton

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HathiTrust Digital Library protects the historical record

If you are familiar with using Google, you have probably also used Google Books. As of Oct. 9, Google has scanned over 10 million books. Now, there is a new source of digitized information available called HathiTrust. Hathi (pronounced hah-tee) is the Hindi word for elephant, an animal known for its excellent memory.

Automating for the first time or upgrading your current automation system?

By Colleen Kirby

If you are thinking about automating your library or upgrading your current library automation system there are several things that you need to consider. Selecting and implementing an automated library system is a time consuming process. It can also be a relatively expensive process depending on what you want to accomplish by automating the library. An automation system can be used to catalog the library’s materials, provide the means for patrons to search for those materials, keep track of items loaned, and provide reports and statistics.

Public librarians and libraries recognized for achieving standards

Librarians and libraries meeting the Public Library Accreditation/Certification Standards were recognized during this year’s South Dakota Library Association’s Annual Conference in Aberdeen.

Public library certification demonstrates that librarians are committed to increasing their skills and knowledge to keep abreast of developments in the information age. By continually improving their own library skills and knowledge they are able to provide quality library service in their communities.

Librarians receiving their public library certification were Sherry Bauman, Elkton Community Library; Marguerite Cullum, Custer County Library; Melinda Ellenson, Huron Public Library; Cathy Enlow, Brookings Public Library; Jan Gossman, Bison Public Library; Jackie Hess, Mitchell Public Library; Debbie Huska, Dell Rapids Carnegie Public Library; Elvita Landau, Brookings Public Library; Janet Miller, Dakota Valley School District Library; Debra Moor, Jackson County Library; Michael Mullin, Watertown Regional Library; and Colleen Smith, Huron Public Library.

South Dakotans deserve and expect high quality service from their public libraries. South Dakota citizens can expect access to high-quality library services from public libraries that meet the Public Library Accreditation Standards. Libraries receiving their Public Library Accreditation were Brookings Public Library, Custer County Library, Dell Rapids Carnegie Public Library, Huron Public Library, Mitchell Public Library and Watertown Regional Library.

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Monday, November 2, 2009

Teen Read Week at Brookings High School

By Jean Kirschenman, Librarian

For Teen Read Week at Brookings High School Library, Chelsea Rief, a senior, created a DVD about reading for her Business Media Productions class, taught by Barb Walder. For the video, she interviewed students and teachers about what they were reading. Some also gave a quick promo for the library. The books ranged from Les Miserables to Brisingr. It turned out great—a real upbeat, fun advertisement for the library that was shown on TV's in the hallways during lunch the whole week. We also used this week to spotlight the YARP books with posters and bookmarks.

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Invite Picturing America scholars to your community

Bring a professional art historian to your school or library and learn more about American art and how it connects with our history and culture. The South Dakota Humanities Council is offering a Picturing America Speakers Bureau for communities that received the Picturing America grant from the National Endowment for Humanities. Three art historians are working with the Humanities to visit schools and libraries that have the Picturing America grant.

SIRS adds November Native American Spotlight of the Month, 21st Century tools, and other content

Both SIRS Discoverer, grades K-9 resource for online magazine articles and more, and SIRS Issues Researcher, grades 6-12 resource for online magazine and newspaper articles and more, are featuring Native American Heritage Month for November’s Spotlight of the Month. SIRS Issues Researcher’s Spotlight includes a quiz question and article about Crazy Horse Monument. This information will be available in the Spotlight archives after November ends.

Aberdeen is part of Knight Foundation’s $3.3 Million initiative to expand digital access at libraries

To help meet citizens' information needs, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation has announced the launch of a $3.3 million initiative to expand digital access and training at libraries around the country.

The initiative will work to increase local citizens' access to computers and the Internet at libraries in twelve communities: Aberdeen, S.D.; Akron, Ohio; Charlotte, N.C.; Columbus and Milledgeville, Ga.; Detroit, Mich.; Grand Forks, N.D.; Lexington, Ky.; Tallahassee and Miami-Dade and Broward counties, Fla.; Myrtle Beach, S.C.; and Wichita, Kan.. Grants awarded through the initiative will be used to establish mobile computer labs, recruit and train multi-lingual technology teachers, enable individuals to use computers for employment searches and career research, and install wireless Internet access.

Aberdeen’s Alexander Mitchell Public Library Director, Shirley Arment, said they could not be happier about their $59,000 grant. They plan to use the money to purchase laptops with stations, upgrade their wireless connection and provide computer training for the public. She credits the efforts of Absolutely Aberdeen, a regional community group, for bringing the library to the Knight Foundation’s attention.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Take another look at school library standards

It’s time to take another look at the South Dakota School Library Standards. Endorsed by SDLA and adopted by the SD Board of Education and the SD State Library Board in 2004-2005, these voluntary goals and guidelines have served our school libraries for five years.

What’s the next book in the series?

Have you ever tried to help a child, teen, or parent find the next book in a series and just weren’t sure of the order or how many there were? Well here’s a handy tool from a Missouri library that’s sure to help: Juvenile Series and Sequels. You can search by series title, author, or subject.

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Here’s an idea from some Australian public libraries

Drawing inspiration from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series by Ann Brashares, this voluntary program has four pairs of jeans traveling around to public libraries, with participating libraries decorating the jeans and hosting programs or displays based around the theme before sending the jeans to the next library. A variety of materials can be (and have been) used to decorate the jeans, including paint, stenciling, embroidery and beadwork. Libraries have developed a range of related workshops, film nights and displays. Libraries have been encouraged to take photos of the jeans in iconic locations, inviting local schools or youth organizations to be creative and artistic.

Originally published at

More resources in the news

Assess your tech: Why nonprofits need technology assessments (wayback machine capture)

Basic tips for evaluating new technologies for your nonprofit (wayback machine capture)

Did you know 4.0 – another update to Shift Happens

EPA info on recycling electronic products

14 ways K-12 librarians can teach social media

Free census materials

Info on the current Google Books issue and related links

Options for streaming your own video

Showing Films in the Classroom (PDF)

Promoting reference services (PDF)

Top 15 reasons people join volunteer boards

Top 10 things library administrators should know about technology (wayback machine capture)

Ways to make computers more senior citizen friendly

Your library does not end here

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Where do I find movie review and purchasing resources?

  • Internet Movie Database allows you to choose a variety of search groups from a dropdown and when you get something you like the page give all sorts of information plus a large assortment of links to other aspects of the same page, such as links to all the actors. When you click on one of the actor links, you get a complete list of everything that actor was in along with even more links.
  • Metacritic has all sorts of ways to sort/seek information. One of which is specifically for DVDs which you can review by recent releases, high or low rating scores, or look at their entire archive and look for DVDs in a large alphabetical list. It rates the DVDs giving them a metascore based on reviewers giving them “favorable”, “mixed”, or “unfavorable” scores.
  • is useful because under the dropdown of “Movies & TV” and then “Advanced Search” you can search by keyword, actor director, as well as various means. Once you find something you’re interested in, the page will give you all kinds of additional information in addition to the fact that it may be available for purchase and for how much.
  • Critic's Choice Video is dedicated to providing the newest releases to the most obscure cult classic. Guests to the CC VIDEO® web site will find releases exclusive to Critics’ Choice, weekly specials, budget videos, as well as one of the largest selection of Classic movies anywhere. In addition to our DVD library, you will also find a wide selection of high definition Blu-Ray discs.
  • Netflix allows you to browse, search or see recommendations for each individual if you sign up for a membership. They also include a special "back of box" feature that lets you get the detail of any movie instantly. Over 100,000 titles on DVD – from classics to new releases to TV episodes.
  • Midwest Tape is a full service DVD and music provider, doing business exclusively with public libraries since 1989. There are more than 125,000 titles available, with more added each day. From the latest Hollywood blockbuster or Billboard chart-topper to hard-to-find titles from small, independent studios or record labels. They also offer a full range of CD and DVD supplies. (from Web site)
  • Library Video Company is the leading distributor of educational video, DVD and audiobook to schools and public libraries nationwide. The company stocks thousands of titles covering a diverse range of topics for all ages and grade levels. Each program has been carefully reviewed and selected for content that is appropriate for the classroom and public library setting. (from Web site)
  • Public Broadcasting System (PBS) gives you the ability to shop by series, arts, history, issues and events, religion, travel, health and more. Descriptions of each title are included.

Do you have a favorite source you would like to share? Send an e-mail to Brenda Hemmelman at the State Library:

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Looking for another way to advertise?

Try This site, maintained by the Department of Travel and Tourism, hosts a free visitor's services directory. If you would like to be included simply check the Visitor's Services Directory.

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ALSC revises competencies for serving children

ALSC has released a revised edition of its Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Public Libraries. The division recommends these core competencies to all children’s librarians and other library staff whose primary duties include delivering library service to and advocating library service for children from birth to age 14.

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To WriMo or not to WriMo: November is National Novel Writing Month

by Stacia McGourty

It’s fall. For some it’s a time when the leaves gently fall from the trees. It’s afternoons spent raking, creating neat piles ready to be bagged, only to have some person decide to relive their youth and start jumping. For others it’s a time of preparation. Get the emergency snow kit back in the car, get out the winter wardrobe, start planning Halloween festivities and what to make for Thanksgiving. Some are even starting their holiday shopping frenzy. (If you are one of those people, keep it to yourself.)

For a third group, fall means it’s time to plot out murder and mayhem, create worlds unknown, and explore the depths of the human condition. Large groups of people will face the blank page, the blinking cursor if you will, and go on to create something. It’s time for National Novel Writing Month.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Tools to use for Web site evaluation

Here are two tools you can use to help teach your staff and middle and high school students some Web site evaluation strategies. All you need to use both of these tools is the URL of a Web site.

To find the owner of a Web site go to easyWhois. Knowing who owns the site is a lot like knowing who published a book. Students need to know if the information they are finding is from a qualified and reliable source.

Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive lets you find the history of a Web site. You can see when the site first began and the changes that have been made to it over time. You can also use this to find a site that takes you to a dead link, or to find information that was once on the site but has been updated and removed.

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The Filtering Frontier

Should you fence in your public library Internet computers with filters? Yes, the law requires it if you receive federal e-rate funds. Maybe, if you don’t receive federal funds. Filtering or monitoring computer use may be part of your computer use or technology policies or the policies of your funding authority.

A survey of several medium-to-large South Dakota public libraries shows that most of them let their patrons roam the open range of cyberspace filter free. Libraries have policies requiring parental permission for minors to use Internet computers and should have Internet use policies for patrons of every age. Most libraries unofficially monitor patron computer use by placing computer stations in view of the circulation or reference desk or in a traffic area where librarians walk by. Sometimes patrons mention others’ improper computer use to librarians, and the librarian checks on the situation.

You may choose filtering software to act as your Internet deputy sheriff. Two filtering software programs used in South Dakota public libraries are iPrism and Cybersitter. This spreadsheet, Galecia Group: Internet Filtering, created by Lori Ayers in 2005, compares various filtering products.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that if you do filter and an adult patron asks for a site to be unblocked, you must unblock it with no questions asked. Choose a filter that opens gates to sites easily.

For a round up of information about filtering, the Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and more, see ALA: Filters and Filtering.

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National Gaming Day is Nov. 14

Hundreds of libraries across the country will join ALA to celebrate the second annual National Gaming Day @ your library on Nov. 14. During National Gaming Day, public, school, and academic libraries will offer a variety of in-person gaming activities, including a national video game tournament. For more information go to

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What is Library Development reading?

book cover of The Host by Stephenie Meyer, image used with permission from
The Host by Stephenie Meyer
It’s against all the policies to co-exist in the same body, but Wanderer and Melanie are not the typical alien and host pair. Melanie’s deep love for her little brother and her boyfriend leads Wanderer to the hiding place of a small group of humans who have survived her species’ invasion of Earth. Through suspicions, violent misunderstandings, and total mistrust the humans and Wanderer become partners with a better vision for the future of the universe. Meyer again creates a world where families, relationships and loyalties are what matters regardless of time or place.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Voluntary free reading is key component in reading success

Reading is the baseline skill for success in school and in life so a goal for teachers and librarians is to get kids excited about reading books and media. Students who read are better writers. Students who can’t read or who read poorly frequently struggle to access and use technology productively and efficiently. How do we get busy or, perhaps, disinterested kids to read? Many experts advocate for offering them choices in reading matter.

WorldCat Expands!

For years, WorldCat has been your source for finding books, doing interlibrary loan and looking up call numbers. Now WorldCat is part of the OCLC FirstSearch Base Package which offers “one-stop shopping” for indexes to books, articles, images, dissertations, archive material and more.
OCLC World Cat Logo

To access most of these indexes, log in to WorldCat. Beside “Search in database,” click on the drop-down menu. You will see the list of available indexes.

Brookings Public Library has very good friends

By Elvita Landau, Brookings Public Library Director

A friend is defined by Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary as “one attached to another by affection or esteem.” The Brookings Public Library has some very good friends in the Friends of the Brookings Public Library.

Patrons browse the annual Friends of the Brookings Public Library book sale.

Using space creatively in Custer and Hermosa

Do you wish you had more space for a notice board or wall advertising? Custer County Library has a great idea. They took some of their low shelving in the children’s area and reinforced one side with bulletin boards. The shelves face out into one of the main aisles so they can be easily seen. There is space for decoration and a board that shows the events and activities of the local schools.

The Hermosa Library found a way to jazz up its walls and keep track of how many books children read over the summer. Librarian Roberta (Bert) Upton created a vine to cover their walls. Each time a child read a book they got a small green paper leaf with their name on it to put on the vine. At the end of their program the vine went over halfway around the library. This could easily be done in fall colors and spring flowers as well.

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Monday, September 28, 2009

Gaming is for all ages

Gaming in the library doesn’t need to be high-tech or just for kids. Hurley Public Library has set aside a puzzle corner for adults.

Game room at Hurley

Librarian Marilyn Jorgensen says many adults find it a relaxing spot and a good place to come for some company and conversation. All of the puzzles were donated, so the library just had to create a space with a table and they were in business.

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More resources in the news

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Resources available for students with qualified print disabilities

Bookshare is a resource to find appropriate accessible books and textbooks for K-12 students with qualified print disabilities. Bookshare is a large online accessible library for individuals with print disabilities, such as blindness, low vision, a physical or reading disability that makes it difficult to read standard print. The library is free for U.S. schools and students who qualify through a $32-million award from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). Bookshare offers more than 50,000 accessible books, including best sellers, textbooks, teacher-recommended reading, periodicals and children's literature along with two complimentary software applications that read digital books; Read:OutLoud Bookshare Edition from Don Johnston and Victor Reader Soft Bookshare Edition from Humanware.

Bookshare and the National Library Service for Blind & Physically Handicapped, the parent organization for Braille and talking book libraries, are working together to provide materials for students. For additional information on textbooks in alternative formats of audio, large print or Braille contact the SD State Library, Braille & Talking Book Program at 1-800-423-6665.

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What is Library Development reading?

book cover of Connie Willis' To Say Nothing of the Dog - image used with permission from
To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis is science fiction and mystery all wrapped up in a Victorian comedy of manners. It shouldn't work as well as it does, but it's hilarious! To Say Nothing of the Dog follows Ned Henry, an Oxford University researcher. The year is 2057 and time travel is used for historical research. Enter Lady Schrapnell. She's turned the University upside down trying to build an exact replica of Coventry Cathedral - as it looked in the 19th century. Poor Ned has been sent back and forth in time, until he is absolutely jet lagged. The infirmary insists on two weeks of rest and the only way he's going to get it is by going to 1888. Unfortunately, 1888 won't be as restful as he thinks.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Freeman and Marion cooperate on book exchange program

Libraries in SD continue to come up with innovative ways to expand book offerings to patrons. A new exchange program between Freeman and Marion is a perfect example. According to LeAnn Kaufman, Freeman librarian, the book exchange started this summer. The idea originated with the large print book circuit that used to run throughout the state. Freeman currently exchanges 15 books with Marion. During the summer, the exchange period has been for three months. As fall approaches and schools are back in session, the time frame will be shorter.

To move the books the roughly 14 miles between communities, innovation again comes into play. Linda Luke, the Marion School/Community librarian, was coming to Freeman one day, so that is how the inaugural exchange took place. In the future, Kaufman’s children, who attend school in Marion, will also become the library couriers. Menno School/Community Library, under the direction of Shana Smidt, has expressed an interest in joining the program exchange, and plans are in the works to make that happen.

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Sharing is caring with social bookmarking

By Stacia McGourty

Sharing is caring - we’ve heard it from teachers, parents and even Barney. Like most librarians, what I most often like to share is information. If you want to know something, I’ll do my best to track it down for you. Some of my best information sources come from the Internet. That ever growing, ever changing, morass of information allows me to find information on topics ranging from, “President Obama’s Healthcare Plan” to “Who shot J.R.?” (It was his sister-in-law, Kristin.)

I keep a list of favorite sites bookmarked on my computer, just so I don’t have to search for the same site again and again. This works out well, when I’m using my own computer. The problem comes when I’m trying to use someone else’s computer. Suddenly I can’t remember the name of the site, or how I found it in the first place.

Enter social bookmarking. There are sites that allow you to save and organize your favorites, not only on your computer, but on their Web site. They provide instant access, no matter whose computer you happen to be using. Sharing your favorite links on these sites not only allows you access to your favorites anywhere you might be, it also allows you to organize them, and make them available to others.

Tagging links with keywords will make each link more searchable for others using the sites. Of course, one of the drawbacks to tagging is the lack of a controlled vocabulary. If you are searching for sites using the term “shower,” you could find yourself looking at sites ranging from party planning to home remodeling. Tagging also doesn’t assume relationships between terms. If you’re searching for sites about South Dakota, Mount Rushmore may not be included simply because the user didn’t tag the link with both Mount Rushmore and South Dakota.

Most social bookmarking sites follow the “wisdom of crowds.” Social bookmarking sites keep track of how many people save the same links. The theory is that the more a site is bookmarked, the more credible it will be. Credibility can also be determined by who is saving the link. Many organizations use social bookmarking sites to make information available to their members.

There are a wide variety of social bookmarking sites available, each with its own unique audience. Some focus on scholarly articles, some focus on news items and still others don’t appear to have any focus - they’re simply for general use. The following is a small list of what’s available.

  • Citeulike: Citeulike allows you to save, share and organize scholarly papers that you are reading. By looking at what others are reading, the user may find other relevant articles. It should be noted that Citeulike does not provide full text articles. It will note where the article can be found, but unless you have the relevant database subscriptions, or the publisher has made it available on their site, all you will get is an abstract and a bibliographic citation.
  • Delicious: Delicious is one of the best known social bookmarking sites. It has a wide variety of users, and consequently, a wide variety of sites are stored on this site. Delicious users tag each link with a variety of keywords, allowing collections to form naturally.
  • Digg: Digg users share content from anywhere on the Internet. Like other sites, Digg allows the user to tag links, but Digg also allows other users to comment on them as well. Digg users also vote on links by clicking the Share or Bury options. The most popular links are posted on the front page of the site.
  • StumbleUpon: StumbleUpon users share and rate Internet links and news stories. Like Mixx, StumbleUpon does have a few pre-set categories that can be used to tag links. The tool bar is very helpful when you are looking for information in a specific area.

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Students create soundtracks for novels

Take advantage of students' interest in music and movies with the lesson plan "On a Musical Note: Exploring Reading Strategies by Creating a Soundtrack" which asks students to create a soundtrack for a novel that they have read. As students search for songs and explain their choices, they engage in such traditional reading strategies as predicting, visualizing, and questioning. The activity can be completed as a response to a class-read novel or as a book report alternative.

Originally published at

SWIM (Become a Librarian) application available in early October

On Sept. 3, representatives from South Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho and Montana met to discuss the SWIM (Become a Librarian) Grant program. This Institute of Museum and Library Services Laura Bush grant program will award scholarships to 50 students from the four states to earn a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the University of North Texas’s distance education program or a School Library Media Endorsement from distance programs at Black Hills State University, Montana State University, or the University of Montana. The South Dakota State Library will award at least six MLIS scholarships and four media endorsement scholarships on April 30, 2010. Scholarship applications will be available in early October.

Originally published at

Monday, September 14, 2009

Public Library Accreditation Standards ready for review

Established by the South Dakota Library Association during the 1970’s, the Public Library Certification/Accreditation Standards provide a voluntary certification and accreditation program for South Dakota public libraries and librarians. The purpose of the standards is to encourage the ongoing development of quality library service in South Dakota. In particular, these standards are intended to:

  • Provide a tool to assess the quality of library service
  • Identify areas needing improvement
  • Aid libraries in gaining maximum community support

In June 2008, the South Dakota Library Association Executive Board voted to move the administration of both the Certification and the Accreditation Standards to the South Dakota State Library.

The decision was made to review the Accreditation Standards first and to review Certification Standards in a subsequent year. In April 2009, the State Library created a Task Force to review and rewrite the current Accreditation standards. The Task Force, comprised of four sub-groups with public library representation from across the state, rewrote the standards to create a tiered system. The new tiered system will allow libraries to be accredited at different levels, Essential, Enhanced, or Exemplary. All libraries in South Dakota should be able to be accredited at one of the three levels.

You can find the draft of the new Public Library Accreditation Standards at The members of the Task Force would greatly appreciate your comments regarding the new standards. The deadline for commenting on the Public Library Accreditation Standards will be September 18. The Task Force will review all comments and make any necessary changes. The new standards will be introduced at the South Dakota Library Association’s Annual Conference.

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In Focus: Jasmine Rockwell

Growing up in Anderson, Indiana I wanted to be Laura Ingalls Wilder. Around age nine I realized that wasn’t really a career path or a major in college. But I could still read the books! Many librarians say they remember their childhood librarian who was so nice to them and let them read as many books as they could carry, etc. I honestly do not remember any librarians until about junior high, and that was because she was a long-time family friend. However, I do remember my childhood library. It was a beautiful Carnegie building that seemed huge to me. The children’s room was in the basement and there were little round reading carrels with beanbags in them. Though the city outgrew it by the time I was in upper elementary, the building is now the Fine Arts Center. For all you history buffs out there here’s the history of the Anderson Public Library.

Jasmine Rockwell, hard at work

Tips and Resources for Grant Opportunities

A three-part article, "Tips to Get the Grant Funding You Need", by Karen Stinson and Phyl Renninger (Local/State Funding Report, June 22, June 29, and July 13, 2009) suggests ways to raise your chances of success.

Foundation Grants for Preservation in Libraries, Archives, and Museums covers grants to public, academic, research, school and special libraries, and to archives and museums for activities related to conservation and preservation.

Originally published at

Monday, September 7, 2009

Good Stuff @ Your Library

The South Dakota School of Mines & Technology’s Devereaux Library has good stuff at their library. To share that message with their patrons they have "dum-dum" bouquets sitting on top of shelves in the main areas of the library.

candy bouquet

The sweet treats are wrapped in a colorful strip of paper with the saying "Good Stuff @ Your Library" on the outside and "Before all else fails, ask a librarian" on the inside. The strips of paper measure 5 1/2 inches by 1 1/4 inches and are cut out using "wavy" scissors so the edges are pretty. The library buys large bags of dum-dums at Sam's Club very inexpensively to create the bouquets. Library Director Patty Andersen said the treats are popular with the students who take one as they pass through. This idea could be easily used by other libraries as a promotional tool since the text could say whatever you want it to.

Originally published at

Discover the World of World Book Discover

World Book Discover, a differentiated learning resource, is now available to all school, public and academic libraries in South Dakota! It is also available from home with a valid South Dakota Library Network member library card or State Library card.

World Book Logo

Though its target audience is reluctant readers, ELL students and those with learning disabilities, World Book Discover has features everyone can appreciate.

Activate the read-aloud toolbar in any article and hear the article read to you. The sentence being read is highlighted in yellow, and the word being spoken is highlighted in blue, allowing readers to follow along. Articles can be translated into 14 languages in print (no read-aloud). Comprehension questions accompany each article to check for understanding.

A click-and-go visual dictionary lets users search by category to bring up an image indicating the names of parts of the subject. For example, labels on “Exterior of a house” include “dormer window,” gutter” and “gable vent.”

World Book Explains is a series of videos answering questions about a variety of topics. Each video is introduced by a young person asking a question such as “Is it true that sharks don’t sleep?” A subject expert answers the question.

The Life Skills section offers information and activities on aspects of employment, money, food, shopping, health, social skills, housing, transportation, taxes and insurance. Answers to the activities are a click away.

Familiar features from other World Book modules are included here, too, such as Timelines, Citation Builder, How to Do Research, Atlas, state education standards correlation and more.

World Book Discover was added to our current subscription by World Book at no additional charge. Find it under “World Book School Edition” on the State Library Databases page.

Visit our webpage under ‘For Librarians > Licensed Databases > World Book' to find details on how to add World Book to your webpage and find World Book Discover handouts to use with patrons and students.

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Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome… no wait, you’re just going through summer reading withdrawal

So public librarians what do you do now that summer's over and kids haven't started pouring in with assignments yet? School librarians, what are you going to do to get the year started with a bang? For starters, check out these great back-to-school read-alouds from School Library Journal. Kids in grades K-5 are all covered with some funny and relevant titles.

Another fun and easy program idea is a twist on the old "what I did on my summer vacation" essay. Encourage kids and teens to come up with one thing that they wished they would have or could have done during their summer vacation but didn’t get to do. Have kids write their idea on a piece of paper that can be displayed, signed or not – it doesn’t matter. Then help them find a great book that lets them explore this idea or is about someone who did that kind of thing. These can be as outrageous as becoming an astronaut. (NASA wants you to have at least finished high school before you can apply.) For example, I (Jasmine) wished I could have gone swimming this summer. So then my friendly local librarian would help me find a book like The Boy Who Wouldn’t Swim by Deb Lucke or Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher. Try it out and let Jasmine know how it went. Send your stories to

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Harrisburg Community Library makes big move

Harrisburg Community Library opened in its new location on August 15 with a ribbon cutting. It is now located at 200 E Willow Street in a separate wing of Liberty Elementary School. The expanded hours are Monday and Wednesday 9:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday 1:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.; Saturday 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. Deanna Marsh and Kristi Jones are the librarians.

Harrisburg ribbon cutting photo
Harrisburg Community Library Ribbon Cutting: (pictured l to r) Troy Lubbers, Harrisburg City Council; Liz Hoffman, Harrisburg Community Library Board; Deanna Marsh, Harrisburg Community Librarian; Faythe Yerdon, Harrisburg Community Library Board; Lori Sisson; Harrisburg Economic Development Board; Ron Albers, Harrisburg School Board.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Changes and enhancements to electronic resources

Take a fresh look at the changes and enhancements in the State Library’s electronic resources. As fall progresses, we will provide detailed articles. In the meantime, take advantage of webinars on the training calendar or schedule a training or inservice for your staff or colleagues. Here’s what’s new, what’s changed and what’s no longer available.

More resources in the news

  • AASL’s Best Websites for Teaching & Learning: Aligned with AASL's Standards for the 21st Century Learner
  • 100 Best Blogs for Librarians of the Future
  • A blog that librarians might find useful is Libraries, Spanish and Kids. The blog is by and for children’s librarians who serve Spanish-speaking children.
  • GovFresh: a live feed of official U.S. Government information posted via YouTube, Twitter, RSS, Facebook and Flickr. The feed combines data from the House & Senate, the military, Supreme Court, White House, Democratic & Republication National Committees, various departments and agencies, and so on.
  • Computer Hardware in Plain English: We love Common Craft videos. They cover software, Web 2.0, and more, including how basic computer hardware works. Take a look — this might be the next tool you use in your basic computer classes.
  • From the Publisher’s Office (wayback machine capture), an online destination where librarians, teachers, and fans can see author interviews, book trailers, supplemental educational content and listen to read-alouds. Check out Penguin Storytime and YA Central.

Originally posted at

What are we reading?

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

book cover of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Written via a series of letters, this book introduces us to writer Juliet Ashton. In 1946, Juliet receives a letter from a complete stranger, a member of a secret book club formed by residents of Guernsey during WWII. Read how Guernsey, its inhabitants, and their stories of life under Nazi occupation affect Juliet’s world.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Where do all those public library numbers go?

Where do all those public library numbers go? Sometimes in the midst of collecting your library’s annual statistics you might think such thoughts. In fact all those numbers become like rain drops to create a mighty river. Each state library is required to submit their public library statistics by a specified deadline. Yes, we have deadlines too. South Dakota’s deadline was July 30 this year. After we gather local statistics on Collect, our vendor, Bibliostat, helps us prepare the data for federal submission. Once we get that done, then the real work (for us) begins as staff members work through hundreds of “error reports” or “edit checks” to create legitimate matches with existing data. Lastly, Daria spent dozens of hours in July “matching” our Bibliostat PLS data sets with the cumbersome federal WebPlus. The State Library hopes to do an overhaul of our questions and our definitions and to pre-fill general data so that errors and typos cannot occur. Pre-filling data—official library names, addresses, phone numbers, etc. will also save local librarians time as well.

Improving Literacy Through School Libraries Grant awarded to Cheyenne River Reservation Schools

Three school libraries on the Cheyenne River Reservation have been awarded an Improving Literacy through School Libraries grant in the amount of approximately $286,000. The three schools: Eagle Butte School District 20-1 (Upper Elementary), Dupree School and Timber Lake School have an enrollment of 1,625 students. They will be served by the grant through an infusion of books and digital media, modern library computer technology, extended student access hours to library staff, media, and resources, and training opportunities for professional library staff. This grant will be the primary public school source for these library resources.

According to Gay Mraz, Dupree School librarian, goals envisioned for the grant are increased connectivity to the outside world in a vast and geographically isolated area, updated library management software, enhanced professional development opportunities, additional audiovisual and multimedia resources and equipment, and expanded library access after school and during summer months. Depending upon the library, collection development may focus on beginning readers, hi-lo resources, curriculum-related nonfiction, and digital/electronic books. Librarians will receive funds allowing them to attend the South Dakota Library Association annual conference and the American Association of School Librarians national conference.

For more information about the Improving Literacy through School Libraries grant go to

Originally published at

TechSoup for Libraries ladles up technology information

Feel tripped up by technology? Wondering what the next technology step is for your library? Can’t afford full price for software? TechSoup for Libraries is one place to get answers, whether you are a technology beginner or expert.

Rapid City Public Library engages total community in National Library Card Sign-Up Month

by John Pappas
Rapid City Public Library

Each September, the Rapid City Public Library does a READ poster promotion in conjunction with the local businesses and non-profits of Rapid City. During that time, we display READ posters in both of our libraries (RCPL-Downtown and RCPL-North) to help promote the businesses and non-profits that work with us on a daily basis to encourage library card registration.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Finalists named in ALAN's Young Adult Fiction awards

The Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of the National Council of Teachers of English has announced the finalists of its inaugural Amelia Elizabeth Walden Book Award for Young Adult Fiction. Established in 2008 to honor the wishes of young adult author Amelia Elizabeth Walden, the award allows for $5,000 to be presented annually to the author of a young adult title selected for demonstrating a positive approach to life, widespread teen appeal and literary merit. This year’s winning title will be announced at an open reception and reading at the 2009 ALAN Workshop in Philadelphia.

The finalists for 2009 (in alphabetical order by title) are:
  • After Tupac and D Foster, by Jacqueline Woodson (Putnam)
  • Graceling, by Kristin Cashore (Harcourt)
  • The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman (HarperCollins)
  • Me, The Missing, and the Dead, by Jenny Valentine (HarperCollins)
  • My Most Excellent Year: A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins, and Fenway Park, by Steve Kluger (Dial)

Originally published at

What is streaming media all about?

Remember trying to find a particular song on a cassette, or even worse, on a record? When was the last time you actually missed a television show? Was there ever a time that you had to wait more than twenty minutes for a file to download? Do you know who put the bop in the bop shoo bop shoo bop?

The face of media has changed in the digital age and libraries are changing with it. While we are still getting much of the same content our methods of delivery have changed.

Libraries to receive funding for computers, technology training

Twenty-five South Dakota libraries will benefit from the third round of the Opportunity Online Hardware Grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s U.S. Libraries initiative.

The funds will allow public libraries to obtain and maintain sufficient numbers of computer workstations. Eligible libraries can use the money for hardware upgrades, software, and technology support to ensure that their computers will adequately serve the public for years to come.

The South Dakota State Library will administer the grants, and each community library will have to provide an escalating local match to the grant funds over the next two years.

The 25 South Dakota libraries receiving Gates grants are:

  • A.H. Brown Public Library, Mobridge
  • Alexander Mitchell Public Library, Aberdeen
  • Alexandria Public Library, Alexandria
  • Armour Public Library, Armour
  • Belle Fourche Public Library, Belle Fourche
  • Bison Public Library, Bison
  • Deadwood Public Library, Deadwood
  • Emma Burnham Public Library, Frederick
  • Faulk County Library, Faulkton
  • Grant County Public Library, Milbank
  • Grant County Public Library Branch, Revillo
  • Ihanktonwan Community/College Library, Marty
  • Kimball Centennial Library, Kimball
  • Leola Public Library, Leola
  • Marcus P. Beebe Memorial Library, Ipswich
  • Moody County Resource Center, Flandreau
  • Oglala Lakota College Library, Kyle
  • Phoebe Apperson Hearst Library, Lead
  • Rev. Martin Bieber Public Library, Bowdle
  • Selby Community/School Library, Selby
  • Sinte Gleska University Library, Mission
  • Sisseton Memorial Library, Sisseton
  • Vermillion Public Library, Vermillion
  • Wagner Public Library, Wagner
  • Whitewood Public Library, Whitewood

For more information, visit or contact Daria Bossman at the South Dakota State Library at (800) 423-6665.

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Mystery Room offers quiet, adult space

by Amber Wilde
Grace Balloch Memorial Library

In May 2008, the Grace Balloch Memorial Library in Spearfish celebrated the dedication of the Kathy Follette and Mattie McVey Mystery Room. The room, created in memory of two members of the Spearfish library community – Kathy, a beloved reference librarian lost to cancer in 2007, and Mattie, an educator and patron – has become a source of pride and comfort to library patrons.

Mystery room in Spearfish's Grace Balloch Memorial Library

Monday, August 10, 2009

For Review: What To Do About Alice?

What to Do about Alice? How Alice Roosevelt Broke the Rules, Charmed the World, and Drove Her Father Teddy Crazy! By Barbara Kerley, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham

President Teddy Roosevelt once stated about his oldest child, “I can be president of the United States, or I can control Alice, but I cannot possibly do both.” Hand this book to the youngster who thinks reading about history and historical figures is boring.

What if everyone in South Dakota read the same book?

The One Book South Dakota program is a statewide initiative sponsored by the SD Humanities Council to get as many people as possible to read and discuss the same title in a six-month period. The selection for 2009 is Dan O’Brien’s 2001 memoir Buffalo for the Broken Heart, a tale about restoring native prairie life to a Black Hills ranch.

Hau Kola Learning Camp builds bridges for students and professionals

by Jasmine Rockwell

girl studying

Throughout my year I get to be involved in many worthwhile projects with libraries. However, one of the most rewarding experiences of my year is working with the Hau Kola Learning Camp every summer. In the past I have worked with the pre-school camp, elementary camp and teen camp. The camp originated in Oglala and has grown to include camps in Pine Ridge, Porcupine and Sisseton over the last two years. The camps focus on helping children and teens retain more of the information they learned throughout the school year, as well as exposing them to new concepts they might not get at school.

This summer was my second working with the teen camp. Approximately 20 teens from the Oglala area come to camp from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and can choose one of three groups to be a part of: the leadership group, the GIS group, or the work group. The first day of camp this year also included a leadership workshop by Joseph Marshall based on his newest book The Power of Four.

Joseph Marshall discusses his book, The Power of Four

The GIS group works with professionals to create maps of the area such as which land in Shannon County is most suitable for septic systems (turns out, not a lot) or maps of the area with points of interest for the teen such as home, school, auntie’s house, etc. The work crew focuses on acts of service for the community which may include painting a house, building fence, or small home repairs. I work with the leadership group. We take a pre-selected book, re-write it in script form, make puppets and scenery, and the teens perform it for the elementary camp the following week. Our book for this year was The Incredible Water Show by Debra Fraiser. The leadership group also does journaling. For this year, journal topics were taken from the main topics from The Power of Four: know yourself, know your friends, know your enemies and lead the way. During the camp I also get to help teens choose books to take home from a supply of new books provided by a group from Baltimore, Maryland.

Hau Kola is also one of the best professional development experiences for me. I may not be learning about library trends or young adult books (I take that knowledge with me), but I always learn so much about the Lakota culture that has shaped South Dakota and particularly its reservations. This helps me better serve that part of the state’s population and it helps me build bridges between traditional Lakota culture, current reservation culture, and popular culture. It is a privilege for me to work with the Hau Kola Learning Camp and I hope to be able to continue for years to come.

Originally published at

Read Around the Clock

Here’s a bulletin board idea to encourage your readers with a bit of old time rock’n roll. Deb Bonte, third grade teacher at Beresford Elementary, and her Vermillion Valley Reading Council committee used the theme and display for their awards night and also to decorate at the 2009 SD Reading Council Conference held in July.

Bulletin board idea from Beresford Elementary

Originally published at

Monday, August 3, 2009

What every first-year school librarian needs to know

Every first year school librarian needs to know that developing a library program unique to the needs of their students, staff and administration is a long-term process. But it is a fun and rewarding process with many resources and knowledgeable people at the State Library to help along the way.

Libraries to receive funding for computers, technology training

Twenty-five South Dakota libraries will benefit from the third round of the Opportunity Online Hardware Grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s U.S. Libraries initiative.

The funds will allow public libraries to obtain and maintain sufficient numbers of computer workstations. Eligible libraries can use the money for hardware upgrades, software, and technology support to ensure that their computers will adequately serve the public for years to come.

The South Dakota State Library will administer the grants, and each community library will have to provide an escalating local match to the grant funds over the next two years.

The 25 South Dakota libraries receiving Gates grants are:

  • A.H. Brown Public Library, Mobridge
  • Alexander Mitchell Public Library, Aberdeen
  • Alexandria Public Library, Alexandria
  • Armour Public Library, Armour
  • Belle Fourche Public Library, Belle Fourche
  • Bison Public Library, Bison
  • Deadwood Public Library, Deadwood
  • Emma Burnham Public Library, Frederick
  • Faulk County Library, Faulkton
  • Grant County Public Library, Milbank
  • Grant County Public Library Branch, Revillo
  • Ihanktonwan Community/College Library, Marty
  • Kimball Centennial Library, Kimball
  • Leola Public Library, Leola
  • Marcus P. Beebe Memorial Library, Ipswich
  • Moody County Resource Center, Flandreau
  • Oglala Lakota College Library, Kyle
  • Phoebe Apperson Hearst Library, Lead
  • Rev. Martin Bieber Public Library, Bowdle
  • Selby Community/School Library, Selby
  • Sinte Gleska University Library, Mission
  • Sisseton Memorial Library, Sisseton
  • Vermillion Public Library, Vermillion
  • Wagner Public Library, Wagner
  • Whitewood Public Library, Whitewood

For more information, visit or contact Daria Bossman at the South Dakota State Library at (800) 423-6665.

Originally published at

Homemade pies motivate

Danielle Wilkinson, community librarian at the Elk Point-Jefferson School/Community Library, loves to bake pies. The high school and adult readers in her community love to eat them. So, for every book read during June, July and August readers enter their names in a drawing for a free pie. Every two weeks a reader wins a homemade pie of their choice. All books in the "Graveyard" (the back stacks where the old books live) are worth two chances.

Read for Pie library promotion

Originally published at

Involving young people in technology planning

Have you ever felt like technology moves too fast to keep up with or that tech fads are worse than clothing fads? Have you ever caught yourself saying or thinking that the only people who do keep up with it or can even understand it are young people? (It’s okay, I’ll admit it too.) Why not harness this knowledge and seemingly intuitive know-how of today’s young people to help you with your library’s technology plan?

Every library, school or public, needs to have a technology plan to stay relevant in today’s world.

This should help guide you when you need to update computers or software and give you a foundation for putting it in your budget request. Form a technology planning committee with members from your library board, young people from your community (teens – 30 somethings) and some parents. This will also help make sure you are adequately meeting your community’s needs. Involving young people in your technology planning also makes sense because it is a plan for the future and your young people are the future.

For some sample technology plans, start by looking at Tech Atlas at Technology Planning.

Originally published at

Monday, July 27, 2009

What are we reading? Peril on the Sea

Peril on the Sea by Michael Cadnum is a fabulous fast-paced YA novel set on the pirate-filled, Spanish Armada-threatened waters of the Atlantic during the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

Book cover of Peril on the Sea by Michael Cadnum (img used with permission from

Danger, young love on the high seas, swashbuckling - I love it!
--Jasmine Rockwell

More resources in the news

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Library Training Institute mixes fun and learning

Late nights, early mornings, day-long classes, bunk beds, shared bathrooms, cafeteria food, does this sound like a fun time? Believe it or not, it is a GREAT time! Library Training Institute is the most fun you can have and still be learning. This year Institute consisted of 19 students from the southwestern corner of the state to the northeastern corner. Students are young, not so young, tall, short, outgoing, shy, funny, serious, male, and female, so what do they have in common? They are all passionate about libraries and they want to learn everything they can about being a good librarian.

2009 class of Library Training Institute

Monday, July 20, 2009

Book trailers market books with music, pictures and text

How do you decide which movies to see? If you’re like most people, you see the trailers released by the film studios, a short commercial that lets you decide if that particular movie would interest you.

21st Century geography and science maps now available

The Partnership for 21st Century Schools has just published 21st Century Skills Maps that integrate geography and science. These maps are great sources of integrated project models that can be adapted for all ages. Go to the following site to view and/or download the new maps and the English and social studies maps: Partnership for 21st Century Skills: Resources.

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Cooperative effort lands grant for South Dakota librarians

South Dakota is part of a collaborative that has received a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The $730,659 grant provides scholarships to recruit and educate 50 librarians and school library media specialists to work in the region’s rural communities.

CSLP is featured on U.S. Department of Education video

Watch Collaborative Summer Library Program past-president Sally Snyder talk about the importance and the fun of summer reading at's Webcast Center. Click on the archived video for June 16, 2009 to see the program Education News Parents Can Use: Summer Learning Programs - Preventing the Slide, Promoting Achievement. You'll need WindowsMedia or RealPlayer. This would be a great tool to use when asking for support next year or to show educators in your area to encourage partnerships. You can fast-forward 50 minutes into the hour-long program to hear Sally’s portion, or watch it all to hear the many references to both school and public libraries.

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Be Quiet! I’m Listening! Check out archived Webcasts

We all know that there’s rarely enough time or quiet space to participate in Webcasts during a busy school library day. So, providers such as School Library Journal and others archive their events for up to a year. Take a look at what’s available and choose a time and space that works best for you.

These are a great resource to go to for some of your new school year planning. The school librarians on the panel share ideas and programs that improve vocabulary and comprehension for readers of all ages and abilities. Check out the archives at School Library Journal's Webcasts.

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HOP is moving to the Discovery Center

Hands on Partnership for Science, Literature, and Art in South Dakota is leaving the capable hands of program director Kathleen Slocum and the South Dakota State Library. As of July 1, 2009, HOP will be managed by the Discovery Center in Pierre.

Hands-on Partnership for Science, Literature and Art in South Dakota

Summer Reading: Full Throttle!

By now most of you have had just about as much of summer reading as you can stand, well, for one summer. Some of you are still in high gear, some of you are winding down, some of you need to take a long vacation on a secluded island where there are no children, and some of you barely have enough energy to brush your teeth at night. But I thank you on behalf of the children and teens of South Dakota for doing what you do. Even if there weren't studies to tell us that children who participate in summer learning activities (yes, what you are doing IS learning) are less susceptible to the "summer slide" librarians already know this. Keep up the great work and as always if you have any questions about summer reading contact Jasmine Rockwell at

Monday, July 6, 2009

Web 2.0 tricks and tools featured in the electronic resources

The South Dakota State Library Summer School Web 2.0 Challenge is underway! How will you use what you learn? Several State Library electronic resources have 2.0 features.

Wouldn't you like to have the journal you read every month automatically e-mailed to you as soon as it’s available? Wouldn't your cutting edge patron love receiving automatic alerts when a new article of interest is released?

Why Web 2.0 matters in Youth Services

Do you ever feel out of touch with the young people of today? They may feel the same way about you. Using Web 2.0 tools can be an easy and fun way to reach out to those teens. Right now the State Library is offering another round of the Library 2.0 Challenge.

State Library renovation completes phase one

From the warm green walls as you enter the building to the cool green tile on the floor, your newly renovated SD State Library is green in many ways. Phase one is complete and the library is now in its renovated space on the first floor. In phase two of the project the second floor will be remodeled and the rest of the Department of Education is scheduled to move in during the spring of 2010.

Front entrance of South Dakota State Library, MacKay Building, Pierre