Have any plans to celebrate the eclipse in your community? Here are some resources that might be helpful!
- Though here in Texas we will only see a partial eclipse, timeanddate.com can tell you based on your location when you can expect to see the maximum eclipse possible. For instance, the maximum we will see here in Austin will be 68% coverage at 1:10pm, though the entire event will take about 3 hours. Consider scheduling a community viewing event around your local viewing information that can be found here.
- Remember it is dangerous to look directly at the sun. This grant is providing solar viewing glasses to public libraries. See how you can be involved here:
- The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Provides Public Libraries 1.26 Million Solar Viewing Glasses for the 2017 Solar Eclipse, BOULDER, Colo.–December 16, 2016– The Space Science Institute (SSI) was awarded a grant from the Moore Foundation that will provide 1.26 million solar viewing glasses and other resources for 1,500 public libraries across the nation. They will serve as centers for eclipse education and viewing for their communities. The libraries will be selected through a registration process managed by the STAR Library Education Network (STAR_Net) and its NASA@ My Library project. The project team includes staff at SSI’s National Center for Interactive Learning. The Project Director is Dr. Paul Dusenbery (Director of NCIL). Andrew Fraknoi (Chair of the Astronomy Department, Foothill College), Dennis Schatz (Senior Advisor, Pacific Science Center), and Douglas Duncan (Director of the University of Colorado’s Fiske Planetarium) are co-directors. View The Full Press Release >>
Please share with us if you are planning anything!
I recently got to tour the Round Rock Public Library children’s area after they became a Family Place Library and it looks wonderful! Children and caregivers were playing and reading together. Here is just some of the work they have done.
In the low shelves along the window, they have lots of building toys, puzzles, and puppets. In the shelves along the wall to the left is their Parenting Collection of books that has seen a lot of circulation. In addition to creating this space, they reorganized other areas that opened up more space and made their board books more visible. The staff seemed quite pleased with their participation in the program.
Their Teen Volunteers, or Volunteens as I like to call them, were ready to sign patrons up to participate in their Summer Reading Program.
Here I am (middle) with TSLAC Youth Services Consultant Christine McNew and RRPL Youth Services Manager Theresa Faris.
Isn’t their Children’s Desk lovely?
I haven’t posted in a couple of months because I have been selling my home and buying another. It has been intense and agonizing, but we are finally out of the fog and I can focus more on work and the upcoming conference!
The Texas Library Association Annual Conference is in a couple of weeks in Houston and I will be presenting at a session called Bleep! Blorp! Books! Robots in the Library. We will be talking about how to get started with robotics programming in a public library setting. I will be speaking from my experience working on the Bots & Books grant for Connecting Texas Libraries Statewide. Presenting with me are Bob Loftin and Cecily Ponce deLeon from the Plano Public Library. They have presented at PLA on their robust robotics program in the past. Also joining us will be Megan Clark of the San Antonio STEM Connectory, formerly of the New Braunfels Public Library, where she works with First Lego League Robotics competitions.
We hope to provide an overview of the benefits of robotics, how the Plano Public Library got started and let their program evolve, and how you can take this kind of programming to the next level through FIRST Lego League.
If you are going to conference, please come hear what we have to say and add to the conversation! Our session is on Thursday, April 21st from 10am to noon.
Last week I was in Mansfield and Cedar Park having our first Summer Reading Program workshops and we had a blast! Here are just a few highlights!
Suzan Nyfeler is our fantastic tour guide through the 2016 manual! We talked books, songs, decor, and display ideas.
The photo booth was a big hit!
The morning was spent brainstorming and sharing ideas…
but the afternoon was spent playing games, making crafts, and doing theme-related activities.
We had such a wonderful time! A big thanks to the Mansfield Public Library and the Cedar Park Public Library for hosting us. I will be on the road again next week at the Jourdanton Public Library and then again in February in Edinburg, TX.
I will be highlighting some of the crafts and activities we had at the workshop on the CTLS website and in the CTLS newsletter leading up to summer. These workshops have left me so inspired, I even started my SRP2017 Pinterest board. You can never start too early…
My son turned 2 earlier this month and we had a Where the Wild Things Are party. My husband and I had fun decorating and coming up with ideas. And of course, I must think the great brain that is Pinterest for much inspiration! I thought if anyone might appreciate what we did, it would be anyone reading this blog!
All of our decorations were simple made with standard craft supplies. Construction paper for tree leaves, crepe paper for vines and tree trunks, craft paper for tree trunk, and balloons for coconuts.
Here we used craft paper rolled and crinkled to make tree trunks.
And our friends made crowns out of paper plates, glitter glue, gem stickers, and colors. This was a very inexpensive, passive craft that wasn’t too messy or too complicated. It was great for a crowd with a wide variety of ages. Would be great for an all-ages storytime! The only prep it requires is cutting the plates which doesn’t take much time at all.
Fold the plates in half and cut slices like a pie, not cutting to the edge of the plate. Cut along where you folded the plate, again not cutting to the edge. Decorate it while it is flat. The points will naturally push out more when you are crowned king or queen of all the wild things! This video was a great tutorial.
Here in Texas starting January 1st, licensed gun carriers will be able to carry their handguns openly as long as the gun is secured. They will be prohibited from openly carrying in some places such as schools and private businesses. Personally, I am asking every business that I frequent if they will allow open carry so I can know whether or not I will continue to spend my money there. However, public libraries are public entities that must adhere to this law.
The Texas State Library and Archives has put together a great FAQ on Handguns in Texas Libraries that I wanted to share. Also, the Texas Municipal League has written a paper explaining state law and municipal authority over the regulation of “firearms” (e.g., rifles, shotguns, and handguns) in Texas. And the City of Dallas has put together this short video addressing frequent questions and listing violations of the law.
These resources might help answer many questions we will all have as we adjust to the changes ahead. I am interested to learn how this affects public libraries all over the state.