Activities, Books, Library, People

ALA 2015, Day 1: My Happy Place

  
Today felt epic. 

Not only because it started out with this news, but because I got to spend it with the best people on earth: librarians!

I began by watching a panel of comics creators speak on Diversity in Comics put on by GraphiCon and weneeddiversebooks.  The main theme I got out of it is that the tides are turning. The creators, the market, librarians, etc., are pushing for change in the publishing industry and it’s happening exponentially. Corporate gatekeepers are opening up the doors to new voices and progressive themes. There are so many more books out now with strong female protagonists (some even with breasts proportionate to the rest of their bodies), characters of color, and of different sexual orientations and abilities. The panelists expressed the hope this isn’t a fad, but a reflection of true change and recognition of the need for people to see themselves reflected in the books they read.

  

From there, I went to the opening of the Exhibit Hall. Librarians swarmed to get free swag – posters, pins, bookmarks, tote bags, even Its-Its! But best of all books! Some advanced reader copies of books not even available yet, and some hardcover new releases, free for us librarians so we can read ’em and spread the word. Oh, the joys of this job! 

  
(My swag!)

Some authors were even there signing. I got to meet the lovely Thanhha Lai (of Inside Out and Back Again) and have her sign a copy of her new book Listen, Slowly. 

  
(Terrible picture. I was too excited to hold still.)

I ended the night at the Michael L. Printz Award reception. What a fantastic bunch of authors and books were honored this year. Getting to hear winner Jandy Nelson (for I’ll Give You The Sun) give her speech was inspirational. What a gift for words this woman has. She thanked us librarians and called us lightkeepers, the ones who hand out the light, the ones who work tirelessly to get the right books in the right hands at the right time. “We are rewriting the world, people.”

Yes, today it truly feels like we are.

Library

ALA came to me this year!

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What better way to kick off the new blog kick than with posts about ALA 2015? In my town! Got my badge today and helped three lovely librarians from Nigeria take a picture in front of the Moscone Center. The fun starts tomorrow! Stay tuned.

Library

Back to the Blog!

Four years have passed since I’ve posted on this blog. Four years. In that time I earned a Master of Library and Information Science degree, plunged into my first school library jobs,  went on a year-long adventure in Taiwan and Southeast Asia with my family, and watched as Little Man went from toddler to kindergarten graduate (he just lost his first tooth! What?!). While all of that would have been interesting to document, I just did not have the time.

Now feels like an auspicious time to start back up. I will begin a very exciting new job this Fall as the Middle School Learning Commons Coordinator at a brand new space at the Chinese American International School. As Dr. David Loerschter has proclaimed this The Year of the Learning Commons, it seems like it might be helpful for other librarians to see my process – so they can learn from my experiments and avoid the inevitable failures, as well as have a place to cheer each other on.  I will also have a monthly blog spot over at Knowledge Quest featuring other librarian folks and their Learning Commons adventures.

I am so ready to hunker down and dive into this career. It really is my dream job and I cannot wait to meet my new colleagues and students and start imagining ways to use the Learning Commons resources to help make learning fun, relevant and connected to their passions – to start creating wonder! Please follow along and join in the conversation.