Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Weeding is part of library customer service

‘Free Books’ can be cause for celebration among enthusiastic readers

I love the tagline on the “Awful Library Books” blog, “Hoarding is not collection development.” The blog commemorates actual books that were once in libraries and in some cases, still are -- presented as arguments for removing outdated materials from a library collection.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Ashland schools open, in spite of snow

Black cat sits in windowsill, looking through window at snow-covered landscape outside

In spite of snow that accumulated overnight, all Ashland, Oregon schools are running as scheduled and on time today (Feb. 23, 2017). That's according to a 5:37 a.m. update to the district’s “School Closure & Delayed Start Info” page. “Our Director of Transportation spent the early morning hours driving the bus routes to verify that buses can safely transport students to school. We encourage all staff, parents and students to drive slowly and use caution when traveling to school campuses this morning.” Shown: the view from our apartment’s back window from the perspective of our cat Starfire.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

For Bellview science fair: pay a visit to ‘507’ in library

Children's science books lying face-up on library shelf: 'Experimenting with Science in Sports' by Robert Gardner, 'You Asked? Over 300 Great Questions and Astounding Answers' by Katherine Farris, 'MythBusters Science Fair Book' by Samantha Margles and 'More Than 100 Experiments for Science Fairs and Projects' by Vicki Cobb

In Bellview library, teacher-librarian Matt Damon has been reviewing the Dewey Decimal classification system for shelving “informational” books: in order numerically, starting with 000 and continuing to 999. Each number corresponds to a subject, with similar subjects grouped in categories.

Steve Buttry, my journalism mentor, dies at 62

Mug shot of Steve Buttry
Steve Buttry
My condolences to the family of Steve Buttry, who died Feb. 19 of pancreatic cancer at age 62. I met Steve when I worked in the newsroom of a California newspaper; his employer, Digital First Media (DFM), provided management services for the newspaper’s parent company.

Our newsroom was transitioning to a multi-platform publishing strategy that placed an emphasis on “digital first,” and Steve came to our newsroom during a tour of member newspapers to share resources and strategies, and also to bring back with him any challenges we might face at our stage of implementing.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

La Voz, un periódico en español y inglés

Black-and-white printouts of two recent issues of La Voz magazine
Ediciones recientes de La Voz

(En español / In Spanish)
Junto con leyendo libros para niños, estoy leyendo La Voz / The Voice. Es un revista escrito en español y inglés, publicado en el norte de California. Puedo leer el periódico en la computadora, o puedo imprimirla en papel. En California, La Voz está disponible en muchos lugares físicos. Las historias en español y inglés están lado a lado en la página. Espero leer esta revista bilingüe para mejorar mi comprensión del español.

(In English / En inglés)
Along with reading books for children, I am reading La Voz / The Voice. It is a magazine written in Spanish and English, published in northern California. I can read the newspaper on a computer, or I can print it out on paper. In California, La Voz is available in many physical locations. Stories in Spanish and English are side-by-side on the page. I hope by reading this bilingual magazine, to improve my understanding of Spanish.

Monday, February 13, 2017

‘Stories Alive’ at Bellview school

Side-view of red cart on three wheels, with handle-bars and decorative steering wheel, emblazoned with the words 'Story Machine' in white. Above, smaller black letters say, 'Dream Big.'

The “Stories Alive” story-collecting machine is at Bellview Elementary School, and will accept students’ contributions throughout the month of February.

Stories Alive transforms students’ creative writing into artistic performances. Throughout February, writer’s workshops are offered at Bellview for students in grades 2 to 5. Kindergarteners and first-graders are invited to writer’s workshops at the Ashland Public Library.

Actors will perform several students’ work during a school assembly on Tuesday, March 21. Students’ creations will also be compiled and published in a book.

Friday, February 3, 2017

‘Mockingbird’ by Kathryn Erskine

Caitlin, an 11-year-old girl, is struggling to understand and deal with her older brother Devon’s death in a school shooting — an event that staggered her entire community.

When she discovers the concept of “closure,” Caitlin decides to pursue it for herself, her family and community.

Caitlin is autistic and, as a reader on the spectrum, I could relate to Caitlin’s difficulty understanding social situations.

Like Caitlin, I had no friends when I was going to school and could imagine that her struggles when interacting with peers, could easily have been my own.