June 2011, Volume 3, Issue 6
Check Your Calendars!!
ALA Annual Conference
Indian Education Summit
SDLA Annual Conference
SD Festival of Books
AASL National Conference
Featured e-Resources of the Month
Learning Express Library helps summer job seekers
What are we reading?
The Thriving Library: Successful Strategies for Challenging Times
Reviewed by Jane Healy
What will help your library thrive, not merely survive? Marylaine Block—librarian, writer, editor, and speaker—offers answers here, based on a survey, interviews with public librarians and her own experience. The book contains many real life public library examples and information from practicing librarians. Though published in 2007, the advice may be even timelier today.
The first chapter outlines the importance of serving future library supporters and taxpayers—children and teens. It includes tips on programs for babies and attracting immigrants' children, homeschoolers and boys. The book discusses teens' specific needs and promotes the library as a place for intentional intergenerational family interaction.
These ideas segue into chapter two's discussion of the library as place. People want a library as a civic gathering place. Block writes about the ways different libraries fill this role in their communities.
The thriving library creates partnerships, the topic of chapter three. When libraries partner with other civic and non-profit agencies, tax dollars are maximized and redundant services are fewer.
No library thrives without marketing, the topic of chapter four. Block offers internal and external ways to spread the library word as she tells how to create marketing and branding plans.
Chapter five "Emphasizing the Economic Value of the Library" contains advice on stewardship and transparency. Documenting the outcomes of library services with statistics and stories demonstrates impact and persuades funders. The author cites studies and examples that show a community-wide positive return for every dollar spent on the library.
Who should you be serving that you're not? Chapter seven addresses outreach to nontraditional users. The book gives examples of successful outreach efforts to these targeted groups: men and boys, people with disabilities, seniors and ethnic or racial groups.
What's good for the community is good for the library. The final chapter discusses how libraries can help the community communicate its values, tell its story, promote citizenship and encourage public dialogue. Libraries are community problem-solvers that connect people with community organizations, services and each other.
More resources and references are available in the book's appendices. This book can be checked out from the State Library.
Plus, more resources in the news
freetech4teachers.com: Help patrons find what they need - Google offers free search tips posters
americanlibrariesmagazine.org: Are your library policies 25 years old? ALA Library Policy Info and Examples will help you update.
sethgodin.typepad.com: What will libraries of the future look like? Are we already there? Opinions differ!