Adult Programming: Beg | Borrow | Steal presented by Jenny Shonk
Beg for help! Borrow supplies! Steal great ideas! Learn how to offer simple and engaging adult programs on a limited library budget. Participants will leave the session with over 50 low-cost, simple programs that they can implement in their library immediately. Passive programming ideas will be included. The session will also include reserved time for table talks with interactive crafts.
Advocacy Dos and Don’ts presented by Jennifer Pearson
“Advocacy for small and rural libraries can feel like a cry in the wilderness. Rural librarians more than ever should know the power of their voices and of deepening relationships. Hear stories and experiences from your colleagues from rural and small library setting across the country who have advocated for their libraries at local and state levels. Learn what they found did and did not work. Proposed panelists include: Ben Blackmon, Rockport Public Library, Maine Sarah Vantrease, Sonoma Library, California Patricia Tompkins, Utah State Library/Iron County Mobile Library ”
The Age Limit Does Not Exist: Combining Youth and Adult Services into Unique Programs presented by Jessica Hilburn
In this session, adult and youth services personnel from rural Benson Memorial Library will demonstrate the success yielded by departmental collaboration on easy, affordable programs. By joining forces to create family programming, libraries will increase attendance, participation, and positive feedback. We will explain how to create unique programs, including those dealing with crafts, writing, history, science, technology, and more, that people of all ages will enjoy. We will also brainstorm programs that are community-specific and give ideas regarding how to adapt family programs to your patrons.
Book Club Reboot: Creative Twists on the Reading Groups We Know and Love presented by Sarah Ostman
Is your book club feeling stale? Are you struggling to keep readers engaged? Learn how you can refresh your book club, even in small spaces and with limited resources. In this session, the authors of “Book Club Reboot: 71 Creative Twists,” an upcoming book from ALA Editions, will share out-of-the-box ways to spice up your book clubs. From unique meeting locations, to reaching niche populations, to time-saving techniques and savvy partnerships, you will leave with ideas to put to work right away. We plan to invite librarians from several small libraries featured in the book to speak on a panel.
Check Us Out! The Clerks Chronicles presented by Christi Mortell
“Clerks, the Face of our library. Clerks generally make first contact and field some of the most delightful, and challenging questions from our patrons. “”Where is the Reference desk?” “”I read this great book years ago, I don’t know the name or author, but the cover was blue, do you think you could find it? “ This Program brings some of the newest tips and techniques to the front lines. How to handle an angry patron. How to tactfully get a talker to move along, and Where to find the book with the blue cover from 3 yrs ago. ”
Customer Service: No Problem Serving your patrons with empathy, compassion, and understanding presented by Patty Collins
“In the library, every time the door opens, the phone rings, or the email pings, another patron require your assistance. This highly interactive session will tackle the challenges of patron service and help you through some of your own sticky situations. The following topics will be explored, but this workshop will be guided by audience needs. • Diffusing difficult situations • Consistency and scripted responses • Patron service policies • Identifying and eliminating bias • Equal and equitable service for all • Privacy and confidentiality • The delicate art of saying “no” Through scenarios, games, and audience participation, come gather tips for your patron service tool box. ”
Did slamming your head against the wall help? Reframing issues in your library and community presented by Kieran Hixon and Sharon Morris
Do you or others in your library get stuck in ruts? Same old, same old problems. Leaders reframe the negative into possibilities. Bring your gnarly issues. Learn practical techniques to reframe those problems into opportunities for positive change. Try out some creative approaches and walk away with a toolkit. Stop banging your head against a wall and discover ways to lead with inspiration.
Displays on a Dime presented by Kacee Garner
“This breakout session would provide creative approaches to themed displays throughout the year. Themes of the session would include: -sourcing free/inexpensive décor to support chosen themes -utilizing a variety of material types including audio and video formats -showcasing materials available via small in-house collections -celebrating holidays, community events, authors, library advocacy and more through displays -encouraging check-outs of materials that haven’t circulated recently This session would include a visual presentation and a facilitated small-group discussion to generate ideas and enthusiasm. ”
Embracing Diversity Through Words presented by Lisa G. Cheever
The presenter will discuss ways in which programming and collection development can open up doors to all. This project is about embracing diversity though words. Libraries are places where individuals can learn about breaking boundaries in a neutral and comfortable environment, whether it is through reading, attending programs and speaking events, or participating in reading groups and/or hobby groups. Libraries are the great equalizers in disseminating accurate and relevant information to the public. The presenter will discuss practical, affordable, and creative way to education your staff and patrons on subjects of diversity.
Engage community and spark change presented by Brittany Overton
Learn how low-cost programming such as candidates’ forums and community conversations can engage your community in a way that sparks real change throughout your town. With four years of consecutive experience hosting well-attended candidates forums, the speaker will offer a step-by-step plan on how to plan and execute successful events that encourage civic engagement and civil discourse. Basics on facilitating meaningful conversations and getting decision-makers to show up will be included.
Engaging Community – and Keeping Them! presented by Jane Blue
Do you struggle with keeping your community engaged in the programs and opportunities you present at your library? Are you frustrated with the lack of attendance at a program that used to garner big numbers? This session will help you analyze what you can do to get your patrons in the door and then keep them coming back for more. From how to ask the right questions, to who to approach and what to offer, we will look at how you can engage your community and keep them coming back time and time again.
The E’s of Libraries®: Demonstrating Your Library’s Value to Everyone, Everywhere presented by Jillian Wentworth
You know that your library is vital to your community, but how do you communicate its importance to elected officials, community leaders, funders, and other key stakeholders? How can you talk about what your library does using their language? Learn how to use The E’s of Libraries® – Education, Employment, Entrepreneurship, Empowerment, and Engagement – to demonstrate why your library is essential. Attendees of this session will craft messages designed to win over elected officials and funders, and learn how to use The E’s of Libraries® and its free customizable resources.
Evolving Your Workplace Culture presented by Leah Hamilton
Do you struggle with workplace conflict? Do you or your coworkers have trouble getting to work on time, is there bullying or favoritism, or are problems at home showing up at work? Interpersonal conflict damages not only the workplace culture; it also negatively effects patron experience. In this session, learn a compassionate and effective method to mend the interpersonal snags in the fabric of your organization. Whether you are a leader, a follower, or simply caught in someone’s interpersonal crossfire, learn these valuable steps to constructively evolve the culture of your workplace.
Feeding America: Gardens, Seed Exchanges, Summer Meals, and More! presented by Noah Lenstra
Three-quarters of the counties with the highest rates of food insecurity are in rural areas. This session will cover how public libraries feed America: 1) Distributing food at the library, 2) Teaching and supporting gardening, 3) Teaching how to prepare healthy food, and 4) Offering the library’s support to food programs (e.g. Food for Fines). We will then go over how you can use the resources of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, including its Cooperative Extension, Summer Food Service, 4-H, and Master Gardener programs. We will conclude with interactive discussion on how you can start feeding America at your library.
Find Them Where They’re At (Patrons, that is!) presented by Kristi Hauer
With our main library in the exact same spot for over 55 years, staff challenged themselves to 80 outreach activities in 1 year after still being amazed at frequently hearing “I didn’t know we had a library in town!” and “Hey, when was a library built here?!” Since then, Shawano County Library has increased its outreach efforts by nearly 25% in just 3 years. This session will cover successful outreach efforts (and a few less successful ones!), including planning, implementation, and budget. From presentations to parades, book giveaways to elderly programs, photo booths to escape rooms, and storytimes to historical events, travel along with Shawano’s reigning Scarecrow Content winner as we share how we’ve crisscrossed our service area and often piggybacked on other community events, lessening our own workload to great success demonstrated through higher awareness of our library’s services leading to increased funding in recent years.
Friends and Trustees Under 40: Recruit Them, Retain Them, Engage Them presented by David Paige
Millennials are more likely than other adults to have visited the library recently. However, most friends and trustees boards do not have even a single millennial member (Pew 2016, ALA 2018). What accounts for this discrepancy between the demographics of our library users and library civic leaders, and how do we rectify it? The presenters will argue for the importance of developing generationally representative boards and explore common barriers to service for those under 40. Participants will leave with practical strategies for identifying and recruiting the right millennials to serve and for adapting board cultures to engage and retain them.
Getting Down to Business: Libraries Supporting Small Businesses in Rural Communities presented by Cynthia Hughes & Stephen Boss
“Rural public libraries have a tremendous opportunity to play an active role in community economic development or redevelopment. They can help local administrators charged with economic development to help grow businesses in their area. Local businesses can use the offerings from the libraries to improve their business plans. In this session we will: share ideas from rural libraries around the country that offer services for small businesses; discuss the obstacles, challenges and opportunities available for rural libraries offering such services; offer concrete resources to foster economic development; provide tips and tricks related to planning programs and marketing services for entrepreneurs. ”
The Hidden Biases of Good People presented by Jean Marie Heilig
Most of us believe that we are ethical and unbiased but research has confirmed that, in reality, most of us fall short in the way we perceive ourselves. Our experiences shape who we are, and our race, ethnicity, gender, height, weight, sexual orientation, place of birth, and other factors impact how we view the world. Our hidden biases can guide our perception, behavior, opinions, decisions, and attitudes, even when we’re not aware of it. With an understanding of unconscious bias, and through self-awareness, we can create a bigger impact in our libraries and our communities.
“I Couldn’t Get a Ride”: Serving Teens When Your Library Isn’t Walkable presented by Jessy Griffith
If they can’t get to the library, how can a library still help its teen service population? Does the physical library need to be the center of teen services? Jessy Griffith, Teen Services Librarian at the William E. Durr Branch of the Kenton County Public Library, shares her methods and ideas for being a friendly neighborhood librarian and removing barriers to access for one of the most traditionally underserved populations.
Innovation on a Shoestring: Free & Cheap Tools presented by Christa Porter
Libraries everywhere are dealing with tight budgets and shrinking staff. Small and medium libraries are particularly hard hit by these issues. So, how are they maintaining a respectable level of technology and library service innovation with little or no money and staff? They are starting new programs, bringing in new resources, and developing new partnerships by harnessing the full potential of new internet tools, technologies, and websites. This session will highlight some very creative responses from small and rural libraries in middle America. Attendees will pick up some great ideas they can take back and use at their own library, no matter what the size, to provide innovative library services and programming.
Leadership Lessons From Kirk, Picard and Reynolds presented by Andrea Berstler
Fictional leaders are given the best opportunities writers can provide to showcase their leadership skills. Science Fiction writers, who create story, character, and place, have the ultimate stage to showcase how to be a great leader. Captains James T. Kirk, Jean-Luc Picard, and Malcom Reynolds demonstrate leadership at a stellar level. While we do not yet have a librarian in space, we can learn much about successful leadership in the lessons taught through the adventures of these three iconic, space traveling captains.
Let’s Glow! presented by Sarah Matthews
This session will focus on providing the tools needed to implement a successful, and outrageously fun, Glow-in-the-Dark Storytime. Glow-in-the-Dark Storytime is aimed at school age children but can easily be adapted for the pre-k crowd. We will share a variety of books, apps, and music that have worked well and will discuss the logistics of hosting a program in the dark, the materials and technology needed, and potential costs. We will also share several ways that you can use some of these same elements in programs for tweens and teens.
Librarian In Training- For Kids! presented by Jennifer Johnson
In this session we will describe our Librarian In Training program. LIT is a 14 week program that invites kids between the ages of 9-12 to discover how libraries work, culminating in a celebration of the children’s dedication and service. LIT participants spend two weeks in every department of the library from circulation to maintenance, first meeting staff and discovering how each department operates, then completing a related project or assisting with specific tasks. LIT takes children beyond traditional job shadowing and allows them to contribute in a meaningful way to our library’s work.
Libraries and the 2020 Census: Ensuring rural residents get counted presented by Larra Clark and Lauren Moore
The 2020 Census will be the first conducted primarily online, increasing the possibility that rural communities with limited internet access will be undercounted. With federal representation and funding at stake, small and rural libraries can play a vital role in making sure we have a complete and fair count. It’s also an advocacy opportunity to show decisionmakers how the library addresses community priorities. In this interactive program, speakers will encourage questions and discussion and share rural-specific examples and resources to empower libraries to engage their communities in the decennial census.
Libraries and the LGBT+ Experience presented by Jen Stickles
Libraries always strive to be more inclusive. Hear how the Olean and Cuba Libraries are creating a more welcoming environment for the LGBTQIA community with programs, resources, and staff training. Presenters will talk about why rural libraries should be offering this program, and discuss the challenges and victories Jen and Tina have faced in this endeavor. They will also offer suggestions for cultural sensitivity training as well as programming ideas. The Olean Library serves a population of 20,000 and the Cuba Library serves a population of 4,500. If our small libraries can offer this much needed service, so can you!
Libraries Connecting with 21st Century Non-traditional Learners presented by Joy Worland
“Non-traditional and individualized approaches to K-12 education are increasingly prevalent. Public libraries offer relevant resources and trained staff, yet still often struggle to fully support homeschooling or unschooling families or schools implementing personalized learning plans or community-integrated projects. What do people pursuing non-traditional educational paths need from their library? Can libraries augment or tailor services and resources to make them more useful to this population? How can libraries reach people who are home or unschooling but are not library users? Panel discussion with librarians and educators, with audience sharing experiences and ideas about working with non-traditional students in their libraries. ”
Libraries Love Raising Readers presented by Crystal Duran
The Imperial County Free Library has been working to increase services for families with young children across its four small branches. With local grant funding, the library has created family-friendly spaces filled of toys, (even in its smallest branch that is less than 500 sq. ft.), a toy lending service, weekly programming, and monthly free play. These new services create opportunities for parents to connect, provide spaces for families where none exists, and help raise readers. The toy lending service and monthly free play are a one-time cost and sustainable. More families are now using the library daily.
Making the most of the space you have presented by Lauren Stara
Do you have underused or poorly configured spaces in your library? Are your services evolving, but your building is stuck in the past? This session will help librarians assess their physical space and offer ideas and tips to alter existing space for better functionality in the 21st century.
Making without space: Circulating STEM kits presented by Kaelyn Christian
The Georgetown Township Public Library received a $1200 grant from the IEEE to create circulating science kits. We do not have room for a makerspace, and our programming space is too small to offer large group STEM programming. So we created a collection of 15 STEM kits that can be checked out for one week and completed at home. We have kits related to biology, chemistry, coding, engineering, and math. This session would give other libraries a template for building their own circulating STEM collection, ideas for projects to include, and a budget breakdown for our collection.
Open Your Library Space to Discovery and Imagination! presented by Amy Mayhill
Imagination has no Boundaries! Our libraries are becoming discovery centers beyond books where families come to spend time together. Get ideas on how to create spaces in the library that will encourage youth and families to explore, discover, and learn together .You can inspire creativity with a thin to non existent budget and these time saving ideas!
Own Your Brand: Marketing on a Budget presented by Taylor Atkinson
In 2018, the Union County Carnegie Library underwent a re-branding in conjunction with our building renovation. Hear details of our experiences and processes in this session, and learn marketing and social media strategies and best practices, how to create a marketing plan, free (and cheap) marketing tools, graphic design principles, and other tips and tricks to successfully interact with your community and promote your library.
Public Libraries and the Opioid Crisis: Planning for Rural Libraries presented by Brian Real
This session will provide advice for rural librarians who are facing the opioid crisis in their libraries and their communities. Brian Real, professor of Information and Library Science at Southern Connecticut State University, will share results from his research on this, showing trends of how libraries of varying sizes have faced these challenges. Amy Grasmick, Director of the Kimball Public Library in Randolph, VT, will shift the focus to her own small, rural library and how she developed policies for her specific community needs. Lara Keenan, State Library Consultant for the Vermont Department of Libraries, will speak about the training programs and policy guidelines that she has developed for libraries throughout the state, with a specific focus on the needs of rural communities. We will leave ample time for questions and discussions at the end of our presentations.
Serving Hidden Patrons presented by Angela Bates
How do you serve those people in your community who are unable get in to your library? How do you find those patrons? What kind of programs or services could we provide for them? Perry Memorial Library took on this challenge with the help of several community partnerships to begin both Youth and Adult Outreach programs and Student Access Delivery. Learn how we partnered with community agencies to identify patrons who would benefit from outreach program. Discover how we planned routes, scheduled programs, tailored services, and reached a previously un-served population in our community.
Small but Mighty: Lessons Learned from IMLS Projects for Small and Rural Libraries presented by Tim Carrigan
Are you eager to implement new approaches in your library but are unsure where to start? Leaders of three IMLS-funded cohorts will share lessons learned from their projects, which all supported small libraries across the nation in authentically integrating emerging trends in library practice, such as design and thinking and user experience; computational thinking and coding programs; and college and career readiness. Speakers will provide overview of these trends and share examples of promising practices that can be implemented in small in libraries to improve programs and better engage your patrons.
The Smart Spaces Process: Co-create and Transform with Your Community presented by Betha Gutsche
As a small library serving a small population, you may think you know your community pretty well. But what about those who aren’t using the library and what about the dynamic, evolving nature of all our communities? Move from designing spaces and services *for* your community to collaborating *with* community members to co-create solutions that work. Participants in Small Libraries Create Smart Spaces applied community-centered design strategies to forge breakthrough connections with their communities, transforming engagement through participatory, active learning programs. In this interactive, hands-on workshop, you’ll practice some of these easy-to-learn techniques, so you too can transform your library.
Stork Storytime Helps Libraries Deliver Literacy presented by Jennifer Jordebrek
The Stork Storytime initiative (previously Womb Literacy) is an expecting family education initiative that encourages families to develop a daily reading routine before baby arrives, learn about early literacy skills and empowers caregivers to be more confident in their role as a child’s first teacher. Attendees will learn about the variety of programs that have been developed including the Reads program, a yearly Expo, monthly Talks podcast and a free online toolkit for the Reads program. This Toolkit enables even the smallest of libraries to be able to implement the program, saving them valuable time and resources.
Surviving and Thriving as an Accidental Librarian presented by Patrick Bodily
You finally got your dream job at the library, but now what? People always say, “I never learned that in Library School”, but what about those of us who never went to school? More than 3 out of every 4 library staff nationwide don’t hold a library degree, so if you’re one of them, this session is for you! Come take pride in your accidental librarianship, and walk away with greater understanding of library principles, practices, and tools of the trade. We’ll discuss Collection Development, Reader’s Reference, Outreach and Advocacy, Programming and more!
Tap into Employee Engagement with the 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace presented by Gail Santy
“Individuals in the workplace need to feel appreciated in order to enjoy their job, do their best work, have positive work relationships, and to stay with their organization long-term. When leaders actively pursue communicating appreciation, the whole culture improves. Gail Santy is a certified 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace trainer and will give you the tools you need to increase performance, morale, job satisfaction, and how to show genuine appreciation for your employees, trustees, and most importantly, YOU!”
Transform Teen Library Services in Small & Rural Libraries presented by Leah Larson
” Find out how YALSA and COSLA’s IMLS funded Transforming Teen Services: A Train the Trainer Approach project supports small and rural library staff in building skills to implement Connected Learning (CL) and Computational Thinking (CT) activities for and with teens. Participants will explore how libraries are doing this work and gain hands-on experience with computational thinking activities (no tech required!). Learn from librarians who are project trainers in Alabama and Minnesota and discover how they trained other library staff in their states to implement CT and CL activities. ”
Vermont Librarians Ignite! Organized by Mary Danko
“We’ll enlighten you, but we’ll make it quick! 6 Vermont Librarians have 8 minutes to WOW you with valuable information & stories.
E. Feeney, Fletcher Free Collection Development Story: Transitioning from DVDs to Streaming Services
K. McCagg, Burnham Memorial Library volunteers vs. paid staff – what you should know
W. Hysko, Brownell Serving Homeless Patrons – adapting services all the time
L. Walker Money, Norwich Public Leveraging your community resources for successful fundraising
C. Weber, Stowe Free Library What I Learned From A Water Disaster In My Library
M. Danko, Fletcher Free What happens when you open your library on Thanksgiving & Christmas… ”
When Did I Join Geek Squad? Tools for Building Digital Skills with Your Patrons presented by Monica Dombrowski
Bringing people online to participate fully in today’s digital world is crucial, and libraries have long been leaders on that front. You know your efforts to teach and provide digital resources help patrons get jobs, gain knowledge, increase their productivity, and engage with others. But how can you leverage and strengthen your library’s resources to best meet these needs? Hear a diverse panel of digital literacy experts share tools, resources, and partnership strategies to help you enhance digital skill development in your library.
WHY-brarian: How to Reconnect to your BEST presented by Jeremy Bolom
At some point in our careers, we have all experienced burnout, a lack of inspiration and motivation, or even a loss of connection between our work and the organizations we represent. Do you know why? The solution is simple, but it’s not always the easiest one to acknowledge, especially when the everyday often gets in the way. With inspiration from the WHY (The Golden Circle) principle developed by Simon Sinek, reconnect with your inner WHY-brarian and the spark he/she can ignite for you.