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National Gaming Day @ your library

Last modified on 2011-10-05 17:03:48 GMT. 0 comments. Top.

National Gaming Day is coming up on Saturday, November 13th. You can add your library to the ALA map of participating libraries by filling out their survey at Participate in National Gaming Day 2010! Survey and see other game nights mapped out on the I Love Libraries page, along with comments about past gaming events and a FAQ about why gaming is being promoted in libraries.

According to the ALA website for National Gaming Day @ your library, there has been an unexpected but appropriate crossover with the realization that Nordic Gaming Day also falls on the same day (and has the same NGD acronym). They’re taking it as a good sign, and providing a template with slick gaming graphics for participating libraries to use as an easy flyer.

Our September 2010 webinar, Gear Up to Game, has been archived and is available for viewing. Teen services librarians Kelly Czarnecki and Christine Bretz share their experiences with gaming at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library and offer advice about gaming programs.

The following books are available at the Library Science Collection, and any Texan can register as a borrower and order titles from the catalog using the Request Form:

Everyone Plays at the Library: Creating Great Gaming Experiences for All Ages by Scott Nicholson (2010).

Libraries Got Game: Aligned Learning Through Modern Board Games (2009) by Brian Mayer, whose blog Library Gamer includes reviews and video presentations about games for the library.

Game On!: Gaming at the Library by Beth Gallaway (2009).

Cool Teen Programs for Under $100 by Jenine Lillian (2009).

Gamers– in the Library?!: The Why, What, and How of Videogame Tournaments for All Ages by Eli Neiburger (2007).


After Banned Books Week – The Next Step

Last modified on 2010-10-07 12:54:48 GMT. 0 comments. Top.

Banned Books Week officially drew to a close for the last week of September. Did it get a reaction?

Did your patrons ask your staff questions about what a banned book is, or offer their opinions on the books in your display of frequently challenged titles? Last week, books were jailed, wrapped in brown paper, and draped with cautionary yellow tape to raise the question of their level of danger to a potential reader. The Hit List for Children 2 and The Hit List for Young Adults 2 are two books about some of the most popularly challenged books for younger readers, listing specific instances about the challenges that each title has provoked, and information about the book that includes sources of recommendation, awards received, and background information about the author to help librarians explain the value of the book to a collection that serves these readers.

Most people can find books on these lists that they have read and consider to be of some value or enjoyment. Some people find books in the displays that do concern them and seem to present a danger that they would like to see addressed. Teaching Banned Books provides strategies for teaching 10 books chosen from the 100 Most Frequently Banned Books of 1990-1999 to kids at the middle school level. Scales offers additional materials, discussion questions, activities, and resources of fiction and non-fiction books to discuss the issues that make these books controversial. She used these with her students as well as her students’ parents through a monthly parent literature class, which bridged the gap between parents’ concern for their children and talking with them about the issues presented in the books.

Did your staff have questions about what your procedure should be for handling challenges, or what other policies your library has to uphold regarding issues of intellectual freedom (such as use of meeting rooms or exhibit spaces by different groups in your community, or access of digital services like the internet)? Protecting the Right to Read covers the professional responsibilities of school and public libraries, and how they have been applied in a sampling of libraries. Protecting Intellectual Freedom in Your Academic Library and Protecting Intellectual Freedom in Your School Library present these issues with real life “scenarios from the front lines” to demonstrate how to successfully handle the challenges your library is most likely to encounter.

Defending Access with Confidence: A Practical Workshop on Intellectual Freedom provides materials for training staff to have a consistent response, delivering excellent customer care while responding to concerns and challenges related to intellectual freedom. The Intellectual Freedom Manual (Eighth edition, 2010, updated from the Seventh edition of 2006)  is a practical reference guide to the law, interpretation, and history of intellectual freedom topics, and includes a section on the USA Patriot Act.

Did you host or attend events, see displays or hear speakers? Speaking Out: Voices in Celebration of Intellectual Freedom is a collection of short essays contributed by editors, publishers, writers, librarians and many others (including House Rep. Barney Frank) using their favorite quote to explain why intellectual freedom is important to them and what they have done in their work to promote it.

All of these books are available in the Library Science Collection to be checked out by any Texan. You can register and request items by using the LSC Request Form. Check out LSC catalog for the full catalog (new additions and reviews at LSC New and Recent Titles Added), or e-mail LSC with your questions.


September is Library Card Sign-Up Month

Last modified on 2011-10-05 16:46:23 GMT. 0 comments. Top.

Library Card Sign-Up Month asks the question: Why do some people not have library cards? September reminds us that the card-holding population of the community being served by libraries does not include the full population that could be served.

The Library Science Collection has resources to help you reach out to the non-library card holders. And speaking of signing up for a library card…any Texan can register as a borrower and request items from the Library Science Collection by using the LSC Request Form.

Running a Successful Library Card Campaign is an available title with diverse examples taken from a wide range of libraries across Texas. The proponents of these campaigns spell out the difficulties they encountered as well as their successes in overcoming common problems.

For libraries reviewing their policies to extend access to new and old card holders (policies regarding eligibility requirements for a free card, patron accounts suspended by unpaid fines, use of public computers, etc.), consider referring to the Public Library Policy Writer. This title can help you adapt established policies and write new ones specific to your library’s needs. Powerful Public Relations is a book to guide libraries in the art of public service announcements, publications and special events with the aim of making your library user-friendly from the potential patron’s point of view.

How Libraries and Librarians Help aids libraries in identifying user-centered outcomes for the services they provide. By determining the value of library services for its community, a library can set greater goals and show the results of how that community and its members have benefitted. When you set a goal of signing more people up for library cards, this book can help you tell a story about your library and its most effective programs. Tooting Your Own Horn covers surveys for need assessment, special events to promote reading and libraries, teacher outreach, and both print and online brochures and forms to communicate what your library has to offer. Once you determine your staff talking points, you can have your own top reasons why non-users should get the benefits of your card. Take a general list (10 Reasons You Should Get a Library Card during Library Card Sign Up Month, which can be turned into a 10 Reasons to Have a Library Card list to be used year-round) and make it specific to your library’s strengths and/or the population you’ve identified for outreach (Top 5 Reasons to Get a Library Card).

For books covering the development of library branding and card logos, check out Bite-Sized Marketing, (from Nancy Dowd of The M Word Blog) for marketing tips. It has a focus to overcome the “bad rap” libraries have with some non-users (What’s the Main Reason?) and doing outreach to connect with them. The Thriving Library is another title working with staff talking points, library branding and logo ideas that were taken from highly-rated libraries sharing their successful strategies.

For these books, other books on this same topic, or books on other topics, check out LSC catalog for the full catalog (new additions and reviews at LSC New and Recent Titles Added), or e-mail LSC with your questions.


Have you heard of the Library Science Collection and wondered how this library could help you?  Listen to our new podcast, The Library Science Collection: A Librarian’s Library! This podcast is presented in cooperation with the Librarian Live podcast series.

You can listen to the podcast HERE.

Anne Ramos, Library Science Collection Librarian for the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, brings her years of experience with this collection and tells listeners how you can gain expertise by utilizing the Library Science Collection and services. She encourages use of the professional library resources for learning, decision making and creative growth by fielding questions such as:

  • What is the Library Science Collection and what does it offer?
  • What are some of the frequent information requests that you receive?
  • How does someone request assistance?
  • How would someone go about visiting the Library Science Collection
  • What do you think is the most underutilized but valuable asset in the LSC?

Anne also highlights two of her favorite additions to the Library Science Collection, Life in the Library: events to build community by Claire B. Gunnels, and The Reader-friendly Library Service by Rachel Van Riel, Olive Fowler, and Anne Downes.

For more information, including links to the online catalog, visit the Library Science Collection web page:

You can also view new titles from the Library Science Collection HERE.

Listeners may contact Anne Ramos with subject requests for information, requests to borrow materials, or general and specific inquiries.  Contact Anne by telephone 1-800-252-9386 (toll-free in Texas) or 512-463-5494 or by email


Ask Anne

Have a reference question for the librarian’s librarian, Anne Ramos?  Fill out our contact form below and your question will go directly to her.  Need a policy example?  Want to find articles on chat reference services?  Would you like her to compile a list of books from our Library Science Collection on your topic of choice?  Ask her anything library-related!

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Want to know what’s new in the librarian’s library, the LSC?

Click here for information on borrowing these resources directly from the Library Science Collection.


New Policy Book Available in LSC!
New Policy Book Available in LSC!

The long awaited new version of Model Policies for Small to Medium Sized Public Libraries by Jeanette Larson & Herman Totten is available and it’s now called The Public Library Policy Writer!

Targeted at Library Directors in small to medium sized public libraries, this book provides an invaluable starting point when writing or revising core policies.  Areas such as collection development, patron conduct and other key services are covered with best practices language and other factors for policy analysis.  The book comes with a CD-ROM of template policies so benchmarking and adapting is so easy.

Four copies are available in Library Development for checkout from the LSC.  Every season in Small Library Management Training workshops, this book is mentioned with good reason as the foundation for building solid policies for even the smallest of libraries.  Borrow one today!

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