Youth Services Roundup


ALA’s Youth Media awards have been announced! You can find the full list of winners here, and a selection of current and previous winners in our OverDrive collection here.


From the ALSC blog: “Connect & Play is a program we have been doing for many years. Here’s the play-by-play I’ve found makes for a successful experience for families in our current environment… A 2-3 hour period where children 0-5 years old and their caregiver/s can drop in for as long as they like. Each week, participants engage with 4-5 stations that support different aspects of early literacy & learning…”


From Teen Librarian Toolbox: “One fun way to incorporate programming with teens into your library is to play games. Yes, good old fashioned board games. We review them regularly here at TLT. Today I am sharing with you 3 board games that I want to try with teens…”


Jbrary shares their annual year-end list of favorite storytime picture books. Enjoy!

RA for your Friday

It’s almost too cold to type! Let’s have a quick chat about books and then shove our metaphorical or literal hands back into our pockets.

First things first! Save the date for Friday, March 4, when NCLS will be hosting a virtual book chat for library staff:

Talking about books and media is an integral part of Readers’ Advisory, but it’s not easy to find an opportunity to talk with our colleagues in other small libraries about what they’ve been reading, suggesting to patrons, and adding to their shelves – until now! Join your fellow North Country library staff for a virtual discussion about what’s flying off the shelves at your library, what you just finished and loved (or what you just finished that you know someone ELSE would love), what author or series you’ve just discovered, and more! Sign up today!

We’ve got February picks from Library Reads and IndieNext, and Entertainment Weekly has thrillers to keep you turning pages all winter long. Not scary enough? Check out these new and upcoming horror picks from Goodreads!

If you’re looking to brush up on your nonfiction RA skillz, NoveList is holding a crash course on Narrative Nonfiction! Hat tip to the RA for All blog for putting this one on my radar.

In awards news, the Edgar nominations have been announced!

For all my podcast listeners, Book Riot has a whole new batch of bookish content to share.

Finally, #FridayReads: I’ve been enjoying Diane Setterfield’s Once Upon a River over the last few weeks, and it’s been a wonderful, immersive, lyrical read, the kind I used to have as a much younger person, before I knew how stories went. But I’m a mood reader from way back, and right about now I’m in the mood for something with a bit of a faster pace and, frankly, a warm weather setting. So, I’ll be reading Lee Goldberg’s Gated Prey, the third in his Eve Ronin series. Happy reading!

Library Director – Williamstown Library

Job Objective:
Under broad policy guidance and direction from the Library Board, performs professional and administrative duties in planning, developing, implementing and directing public library services for the Williamstown Library. These duties include budget preparation, evaluation, personnel, collection development, community relations and facility maintenance.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:
• Administers board policies, makes policy recommendations to board, provides staff support and information to the board.

• Prepares budget for Library Board approval, monitors and approves expenditures as directed by the Library Board, administers gifts, state and federal money.

• Supervises personnel directly or through subordinates; hires and trains employees; assigns and monitors work; evaluates personnel; disciplines employees as necessary.

• Evaluates library services and makes recommendations for improvements; works with elected officials, school officials and civic organizations to develop programs and resolve problems.

• Administers maintenance of library facilities and equipment; works with architects and planners on facility development.

• Reviews and approves selection of all materials for purchase.

• Participates in professional meetings, classes, conferences and workshops.

• Participates in organizational management through the committee process.

• Reads professional materials to update and maintain knowledge and skills.

• Accountable for all activities, programs and services.

• Performs other related duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
• Thorough knowledge of current trends and developments in the library field.

• Knowledge of and experience with effective participative management techniques.

• Considerable knowledge of management principles and practices.

• Knowledge of supervision, training, and staff utilization principles.

• Thorough knowledge of library reference sources, print and online.

• Considerable knowledge of children’s, young adult and adult literature.

• Considerable knowledge of online automation.

• Working knowledge of public relations procedures.

• Working knowledge of budgetary and accounting processes of the department.

• Ability to plan, organize, supervise, and evaluate the work of employees in diversified library activities.

• Broad experience in collection development and programming.

• Substantial skills related to the organization of people, processes and tools in a public library setting.

• Superior human relations and communication skills.

• Ability to establish and maintain effective and harmonious working relationships with employees, other agencies, and the general public.

• Ability to communicate effectively, verbally and in writing.

• Ability to follow written and verbal communications.

• Ability to develop and carry out program services.

Tools and Equipment Used:
Library computer system; personal computer including internet search engines and the library’s website, word processing and database management software, copy and fax machine, and phone.

Work Environment:
The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education, Experience and Training:
• The library shall employ as director, a person who has completed not less than two academic years of full time study in an approved college or university
• A minimum of five-year experience as a librarian in an increasingly responsible supervisory and/or administrative position
• Substantial experience in public services and dealing with the public.

To Apply:

Applicants should submit applications to Cherie Tietjen, Board President, Williamstown Library, PO Box 4, Williamstown NY 13493

Youth Services Roundup – All Summer Edition!


Just a reminder, the first part of our summer reading workshop will be held on Friday, February 4 from 11am-noon. During this virtual workshop, participants will get a chance to meet our new Youth Services Consultant and review the basics of what goes into a summer reading program. All attendees will receive promotional gear from CSLP, so sign up today!


If your library reported that they used the Collaborative Summer Library Program manual in 2021, you’ll be getting the flash drive and online code automatically in your delivery very soon. If you did not use the manual last summer but would like one this year, please let me know, and I’ll send one your way.

New for 2022: Schools and school libraries working with local public libraries to collaborate on Summer Reading can get the code to access the materials in the 2022 online manual, so please feel free to share with your school library partners.


The NYS Library is hosting a webinar about how to get started with READsquared, the online reading program solution provided at no cost to public libraries statewide. This introductory webinar will be offered by the state library on February 22 and March 3 and is open to any library getting started with READsquared or needing a refresher on navigating the control room before summer reading. No registration required – find more information about READsquared here.


Just a reminder, the deadline for NCLS’s StoryWalk mini-grant is next Friday, January 28. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Together We Read Begins February 7

#TogetherWeRead, a digital book club connecting readers to the same ebook & audiobook at the same time with no waitlists or holds, begins February 7th! The featured title is ‘The Five Wounds’ by Kirstin Valdez Quade.

It’s Holy Week in the small town of Las Penas, New Mexico, and thirty-three-year-old unemployed Amadeo Padilla has been given the part of Jesus in the Good Friday procession. He is preparing feverishly for this role when his fifteen-year-old daughter Angel shows up pregnant on his doorstep and disrupts his plans for personal redemption. With weeks to go until her due date, tough, ebullient Angel has fled her mother’s house, setting her life on a startling new path.

Vivid, tender, funny, and beautifully rendered, The Five Wounds spans the baby’s first year as five generations of the Padilla family converge: Amadeo’s mother, Yolanda, reeling from a recent discovery; Angel’s mother, Marissa, whom Angel isn’t speaking to; and disapproving Tíve, Yolanda’s uncle and keeper of the family’s history. Each brings expectations that Amadeo, who often solves his problems with a beer in his hand, doesn’t think he can live up to.

The Five Wounds is a miraculous debut novel from a writer whose stories have been hailed as “legitimate masterpieces” (New York Times). Kirstin Valdez Quade conjures characters that will linger long after the final page, bringing to life their struggles to parent children they may not be equipped to save.

More details here:

Youth Services Roundup


From YSS: “Apply today for one of the scholarships to attend the 47th Annual YSS Spring Conference on Friday, April 8, 2022, at the Rivers Casino in Schenectady, NY.  There are two scholarships available. Each of the scholarships is designed to cover registration fees and up to $250 reimbursement.” For more information, and to apply, visit the YSS Spring Conference scholarship page.


In case you missed it live, the recording, slides, and handouts from the webinar DLD held in November are now available! Includes: Options for producing a StoryWalk® and their associated costs, finding StoryWalk® partners and thinking creatively about locations, how to choose the best titles for StoryWalks® (and why some great picture books aren’t good StoryWalk® choices), essentials of StoryWalk® production & presentation, and StoryWalks® for different age groups. (And just a reminder that the deadline for NCLS’s StoryWalk mini-grant is Friday, January 28…)


From the DEC: “Planting and caring for tree seedlings can help young people learn about ecosystems and the valuable role trees play. Schools and youth organizations are eligible to receive 30-50 free trees or shrubs by participating in this educational program.” Applications must be submitted by March 31st – apply today!


Goodreads shares 68 highly anticipated YA titles for 2022. Check it out!

RA for your Friday

Just when you thought we had reached the last of the Best lists, we started a new year and have a whole new crop of lists! Shall we?

As far as what looks good for 2022, we’ve got picks from Lit Hub Oprah, AV Club, Vulture, Shondaland, and Vogue. Mystery lover? We’ve also got picks from Goodreads, CrimeReads and PopSugar. Sci-fi fan? I didn’t forget you – and neither did Lit Hub or io9. And don’t forget debuts – Book Riot and Barnes and Noble surely did not!

We’ve got January picks from Amazon, Entertainment Weekly, Good Morning America, and Town and Country. For all you genre fans, we’ve got romance from SBTB (and Goodreads), and of course, crime reads from CrimeReads.

In case you missed it, NCLS has three new Book Club in a Bag titles to share: The Address Book, by Deirdre Mask, Black Sun, by Rebecca Roanhorse, The Cold Millions, by Jess Walter. Learn more about Book Club in a Bag in our Collection Development Guide.

And while you’re there, check out our newest Deep Dive pages for Mystery, Romance, Graphic Novels, and Sci-Fi! Exuberant hat tip to Kristy THE, who took on multiple pages for this project. (Retroactive – but no less exuberant – hat tips to Dorothy MEX and Linda (formerly) GOU for giving us the Literary and Horror pages, respectively.)

Finally, #FridayReads: I’m starting the new year with a book about a new start – A Season for Second Chances, by Jenny Bayliss. In my earbuds is (are?) Orwell’s Roses, by Rebecca Solnit, and PBS has got my weekend viewing sewn up with Around the World in 80 Days AND the second season of All Creatures Great and Small! Happy reading/listening/public televisioning!

Youth Services Roundup


Looking for an extra something to hand out to families with young children as we head into winter? I still have some Talking is Teaching Indoor Activities Kits from earlier this year to give away. Just email me with the subject line “Talk, Read, Sing!” and let me know how many you’d like. While supplies last!


From the ALSC blog: “On December 7, the United States Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy issued a warning about youth mental health, stating that there has been an “alarming” rise in certain mental health challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic… Children and Teen librarians are among the front-line workers who have direct communication with this population. We can intentionally and consistently shape our programming, collections, outreach, collaborations and in fact every day to day interaction with the goal of promoting positive mental health…”


From Youth Services Shout-Out: “Feeling disheartened by program attendance? In a recent post on Programming Librarian, entitled Good Programs Start Small: Attendance Doesn’t Equal Success, Montour Falls Library, in rural Schuyler County, New York and Wright Memorial Public Library in Oakwood, Ohio share their experiences with programs that may not have seen a large number of attendees, but made a significant impact in their communities nonetheless…”


From Teen Librarian Toolbox: “Yes, this blog is called Teen Librarian Toolbox. Yes, we usually focus on middle grade and YA. BUT. Since I work in an elementary library, and since a lot of our readers serve patrons of all ages, I figured I’d include a list just for picture books this year…”

Youth Services Roundup


The latest bundle from Talking is Teaching is all about healthy habits! Check out posters, parent tip sheets, social media content, and more in this shared folder.


From Youth Services Shout-Out: “Free Comic Book Day isn’t until May 7, 2022 BUT here is an opportunity to register as a library to receive free comics for your event if you don’t have a local comic book shop. If you qualify, you can enroll in their FCBD Library Program. But you need to hurry. The deadline to apply is January 31, 2022.”


From the ALSC Blog: “Our Children’s Services department always provides some type of make-and-take craft for these types of events. Part of me loves the process of creating several hundred craft stick stars for kids to decorate with sequins and pom poms but other than a fun craft, I do not think kids get much out of these types of programs. I think that creativity is an important skill children need and we, as children’s librarians, can help foster that creativity. This is why I regularly offer process art programming at my library…”


From Teen Librarian Toolbox: “BookTok has surged lately with many books and trends showing up in both public and school libraries. To find many of these, all you need is a TikTok account and appropriate hashtags to search for. Some of these include #BookTok, #LibraryTok, #LibraryTikTok, and #LibrariansofTikTok. We recently ventured into the land of Tok a few weeks ago at my library. It was reasonably easy to learn the basics, and now we are moving on to some “fancier” tricks and transitions…”