Collection Development for Early Childhood – Ready to Read Resource Center

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Another link I found relating to early childhood collection development is to this great non-profit called Ready to Read Resource Center. Coming from a more rural community in Montana (we did have a public library – but it was small!), I was curious about other rural communities with more limited literacy resources, smaller library, and fewer public libraries, and consequently how they might look at collection development a bit differently.

There are a few different literacy organizations with similar names, but this particular one works specifically with the Alaska Public Library system! The center was born through a partnership between the Anchorage Public Library & the Alaska State Library in 2006. Their website describes their service as promoting early literacy development to Alaska’s pre-K children. They do this by loaning free reading kits to organizations (primarily libraries, but in the case of towns that don’t have a public library the kits can be leant directly to caregivers and/or parents). Within Anchorage, kits can be borrowed directly from the library, and in towns with smaller public libraries they can be requested through Interlibrary Loan. There are a few different kits available, ranging from lapsit bags with 5 or 6 books, to ‘Ready to Read’ tubs with up to 50 books.

The organization also advocates for early literacy by “giving presentations to caregivers and early childhood organizations.”

“Many rural Alaskan communities have no bookstores or libraries and those communities that do have libraries, even in urban areas, may not find adequate collections of books for infants and toddlers as these collections are expensive to maintain.” – Ready to Read Resource Center

Overall I thought this was a really interesting variation on collection development, offering an option of less permanent collections for libraries and communications with much more limited resources.

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Ready to Read Resource Center

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Board Book Buzz | Editors’ Picks

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When I was researching resources for early childhood collective development, I was excited to come across this annotated list (published by School Library Journal), of 50 “buzz-worthy” board books.  It was published in July 2017, so includes primarily titles for babies, toddlers, and preschool readers that just came out in the past year.

After working in the Strand Book Store’s Children’s Department, I know just how particular parents can be about picking books out for even the littlest readers! Parents and educators look for books on a variety of topics: feelings,  animals, New York City, opposites, colors, counting… the list goes on. Interactivity (such as lift-the-flap and textures), as well as how the book reads (does it rhyme? can you sing it? is it bilingual?) are also super important factors to consider.

Which is why this list is great – the ‘annotations’ give a small summary of the book’s topic or theme, the suggested age, as well as info on how it reads and any special features! (such as this one that uses actual Picasso sketches to teach animal recognition). Also, it features books by diverse authors, as well as several bilingual choices. I think this collection of board books would be an excellent resource for anyone wanting to build a current early childhood library collection.

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Board Book Buzz | Editors’ Picks

Early Childhood + Elementary Programming – Drag Queen Story Time

I love love love the idea of NYPL’s Drag Queen Story Time. Having moved from small-town Montana to the extremely diverse + inclusive Bay Area, and now to New York City (where you can hear 5 different languages spoken in one subway car) I don’t think I can ever live somewhere again that doesn’t offer even a taste of progressive children’s programming such as this. This is an amazing way to help prevent the bullying and marginalization of LGBTQ people in our communities, starting from the earliest ages! I believe this program originated at NYPL, but it has now expanded to different cities and venues!  

NYPL describes the programming as:

“A program for children aged 3-8 that raises awareness of gender diversity, promotes self-acceptance, and builds empathy through an enjoyable literary experience. In this 45-minute program, a drag queen trained by children’s librarians reads picture books, sings songs, and leads children in a simple craft activity. Children love the bright colors, glamorous outfits, and larger-than-life personalities of the drag queen performers, but more importantly, DQSH teaches children to accept and celebrate gender diversity in themselves and others, and helps to curb bullying of LGBTQ children.”

Related Links:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/19/style/drag-queen-story-hour-puts-the-rainbow-in-reading.html

https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/drag-queen-story-time-library-binghampton-new-york-controversy-468471103.html

 

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Early Childhood + Elementary Programming – Drag Queen Story Time

Hello World!

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Maybe one day I’ll start reading to you again, but for now I’m busy getting my Masters in Library and Information Science at Pratt Institute, and will be using this blog as a way to curate materials for my Building Youth Community & Collections course. Links & posts will all be related to youth library programming and collection development

(Course taught by Professor Jennifer Hubert Swan).

I’ve officially made the coast-to-coast move! From bookseller extraordinaire to librarian in progress! These days you can find me studying for my MLIS, workin’ at the Pratt Library, or in my cozy Brooklyn apartment – obviously reading something, always & forever.