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Children’s Services Fundamentals. Instructor: Penny Peck An Infopeople Workshop Winter/Spring 2004. This Workshop Is Brought to You By the Infopeople Project.

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children s services fundamentals

Children’s Services Fundamentals


Penny Peck

An Infopeople Workshop

Winter/Spring 2004

this workshop is brought to you by the infopeople project
This Workshop Is Brought to You By the Infopeople Project

Infopeople is a federally-funded grant project supported by the California State Library. It provides a wide variety of training to California libraries. Infopeople workshops are offered around the state and are open registration on a first-come, first-served basis.

For a complete list of workshops, and for other information about the Project, go to the Infopeople website at

workshop overview
Workshop Overview
  • Reference and Homework
  • Storytime and other programming
  • Summer reading programs
  • Access and Liability
  • Tours
  • Book discussion groups
at the children s desk
At the Children’s Desk
  • Reference
  • Homework Help
  • Readers’ Advisory
  • Reference Interview
  • Homework related requests
  • Dealing with the child instead of the parent
  • Recreational reading requests
  • Do you really need a book (encyclopedias, websites, other resources may be better)?
homework help
Homework Help
  • Is information or instruction needed?
  • Websites useful for homework
    • yahooligans or
  • Tutoring issues
    • just doing a sample problem should be enough
  • How much help is too much?
  • Assisting teachers
    • often need a children’s librarian for curriculum consultation
readers advisory
Readers Advisory

Children’s Genre Fiction

Finding recreational reading for kids vs. adults:

  • Kids more flexible in their preferences
  • Open to new genres (mystery, fantasy)
  • Tools useful for Readers’ Advisory
  • Readers’ Advisory Interview
  • Gender Issues
common questions for readers advisory
Common Questions for Readers’ Advisory
  • What’s a book you read recently and liked?
  • What grade are you in?
  • Did you want something true or a chapter book?
  • Is this for a book report or to read for fun?
  • What kind of thing do you do for fun (sports, etc.)?
  • Do you like mysteries? Fantasy like “Harry Potter?” Books set in the past (Historical Fiction)?
  • (If child isn’t there) Is this for a boy or a girl?
  • Do you like books in a series?
reading levels
Reading Levels
  • How to help child determine reading level
  • Look on back of paperback for RL
  • Five finger rule
  • Not “one size fits all”
  • Nonfiction levels may be higher but still work for that child
children s fiction jeopardy
Children’s Fiction “Jeopardy”
  • This series by a San Francisco author stars three orphans out to escape Count Olaf in “A Series of Unfortunate Events,” written by?
  • This famous girl detective has been popular for more than 50 years:
  • This series by Dav Pilkey has comic drawings interspersed through each chapter and stars a superhero famous for his “tighty whities:”
programming what do you do
Programming – What Do You Do?
  • Storytimes
  • Summer Reading Programs
  • Entertainment/Cultural/Fine Arts
  • Library Tours
  • Book Discussion Groups
why do storytime
Why Do Storytime?
  • Foster love of books and libraries
  • Modeling for parents
  • Boosts circulation
  • Creates:
    • readers
    • library users
storytime preparing for kindergarten
Storytime - Preparing For Kindergarten
  • Kindergarten readiness
    • need to know alphabet, numbers, shapes, colors, use of scissors,how to write name, phone number, etc.
  • Promote readiness through:
    • Fingerplays
    • Song
    • Props
    • Puppets
storytime things to consider
Storytime – Things to Consider
  • Age divisions

- baby/lapsit, toddler, preschool, family

  • Basic format for storytime
  • Time – 20 min. – 45 min.
  • Types of stories
  • Themes

-useful websites

crafts for preschool storytime
Crafts for Preschool Storytime
  • “It’s the process not the product.”
  • Learn skills needed for Kindergarten:
    • motor skills
    • basic problem solving
  • Websites
five green and speckled frogs
“Five Green and Speckled Frogs”

Five green and speckled frogs,

Sat on a speckled log,

Eating the most delicious bugs.


One jumped into the pool,

Where it was nice and cool,

Now there are four green speckled frogs

Ribbit, ribbit.

summer reading programs

Summer Reading Programs





books, pages, time spent reading?

Teen volunteers

can help with sign-ups, records, prizes

often bilingual

themes and games
Themes and Games
  • Games
    • must be luck, not skill, so equal for all ages
  • Themes
    • literature-based
    • educational
    • fun
  • Programming relating to themes
entertainment programming
Entertainment Programming
  • Reasons
    • increase circ.
    • get new users
    • promote reading
  • Entertainment – library as “place”
  • Multicultural – outreach to nonusers
  • Fine Arts – promote related library materials
  • Hosting duties – making the program work for audience and entertainer

-sample confirmation letter and checklist

access and liability
Access and Liability
  • Children are different from Adults
    • age 8 is the “age of reason”
  • Have a written policy to hand adult
  • Policy comes from Management
  • Access – to library, to information, to services should not be based on age
unaccompanied children
School truancy rules

w/adult during school hours

Age divisions

need age rule for unaccompanied children

high school age – more flexibility

Legal Obligations

only parent can give permission for card or internet

Children left at closing time

check with management on policy (& police)

Unaccompanied Children
latchkey children
Latchkey Children
  • Children grades 3-8 in library after school
  • Need a written policy
  • They need to:
    • be using library materials
    • follow written rules
  • You need to communicate with parents regarding behavior problems
library tours
Library Tours
  • Goals
    • get new users, new cardholders, promote library, instruction on use of library
  • What to cover
    • circulation, media, recreational reading, homework materials, computers, searching skills, library rules
working with teachers
Working with Teachers
  • Schedule tours
  • Library card outreach
  • Special topics for upcoming assignments
  • Your agenda vs. the teacher’s agenda
make tours fun
Make Tours Fun
  • Scavenger Hunts
  • Family Feud-style games
  • Puzzles for younger children
  • Trivia questions
  • Bookmarks, stickers
book discussion group
Book Discussion Group
  • Goals, Types of Groups
    • Xtreme Readers
    • 4th and 5th grade, Middle school, High school
  • Costs involved
    • free or charge a fee
    • same book or just same genre or author
  • Methods
    • read book before meeting, discussion questions, hands-on activities, refreshments, movies, author visits
handling diverse learners
For visual learners write on board

For audio learners do listening based activity

For kinetic (hands-on) learners do crafts and other hands on activities

Handling Diverse Learners
gender issues
Boy books vs. Girl books

More boys are kinetic learners

Books on tape for those with learning disabilities/ESL

Gender Issues
summary of the day
Summary of the Day
  • Favorite topic covered today
  • What you feel ready to do next
  • Questions on any of the topics
  • Things you found useful
  • What you would like to learn next tim
  • If you think of other questions later, please email me at; I will be happy to answer anything I can!