Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Bible Remains America's Favorite Book

The Bible Remains America's Favorite Book
Gone with the Wind and the Harry Potter series are 2nd and 3rd favorites
Harris Interactive: 4.29.2014

There's always one. It might be something you remember fondly from when you were a child. Or, it could be one that just resonated with you years after your first experienced it. For some, it could the one that surprised them the most. That "one" is a favorite book, and with people reading in so many different ways today, it's interesting to see what America's favorite book is. This year, same as in 2008 when The Harris Poll last asked this question, the number one book is The Bible, followed by Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind. Moving up one spot on the list to number three is J.K. Rowling's tales of the young wizard in the Harry Potter series. Rounding out the top five favorite books are another series - J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, which drops one spot to number four - and Harper Lee's coming of age classic To Kill a Mockingbird, which moves up two spots to number five.

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll® of 2,234 U.S. adults surveyed online between March 12 and 17, 2014.

Different Second Favorites

Across all the various demographic groups, The Bible is the number one book, but there are definitely differences in the second favorite. Men go to fantasy, with The Lord of the Rings series being their second favorite, while for women it's all about the Southern charm in Gone with the Wind. There is also a generational difference, with Millennials' second favorite being the Harry Potter series while for Gen Xers it's The Lord of the Rings series. Both Baby Boomers' and Matures' second favorite is Gone with the Wind.  READ MORE !

The Bible
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Harry Potter (series) by J.K. Rowling
The Lord of the Rings (series) by J.R.R. Tolkien 
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Literacy - Spanning the U.S: Tulare CA, LIFE IN, Detroit MI

Literacy:  Spanning the U.S.

Today is Adult Literacy Day in Tulare County
TCL News Blog: 4.22.2014

The Tulare County Board of Supervisors designated today as Adult Literacy Day at its weekly board meeting.

County Librarian Jeff Scott, Program Manager Sue Gillison and Tulare Coordinator Kim Torrez came before the board and audience to outline the activities of the Literacy program. Ms. Gillison introduced Veronica Serrano and Mrs. Torrez presented Kalash Rana as outstanding examples of achievement in literacy.

Board Chairman Phil Cox asked the program administrators, tutors and learners to join him in front of the audience as he made the proclamation presentation. Chairman Cox noted that *What these learners, Veronica and Kalash, have told us is what we need to hear about the importance of our literacy program."

The Tulare County Library Read to Succeed literacy program offers free literacy services to any adult county resident. The tutors are all volunteers who give their services to the community. For more information, call 713-2745.  READ MORE !

TURNING A NEW PAGE: Jeffersonville adult literacy program looks to boost opportunities
Literacy Is For Everyone is a free program for illiterate adults
News&Tribune: 4.16.2014 by Elizabeth Beilman

A Jeffersonville group is helping people learn a basic skill that most take for granted every day, even at this very moment — reading.
-Don Walker and others at Faith Lutheran Church founded LIFE, or Literacy Is For Everyone, a free program for illiterate adults who are looking to get their high school equivalency degrees or just wanting to function better in society.

Walker, director of the program, said he was shocked to learn of the number of adults in Clark and surrounding counties who don’t have a high school diploma. Many of whom can’t read and haven’t had a place to learn. He said that LIFE is the first adult literacy program in Jeffersonville.

“There’s been no where to turn,” he said. “Part of the problem is the fact that these people are often underemployed or unemployed, so they don’t have a whole lot of money.”  READ MORE !

Literacy volunteers in Metro Detroit help break down language barriers
Detroit News: 4.19.2014 by Shawn D Lewis

The tutor and pupil are suburban wives and moms.

Similar, yet different.

One’s from Grosse Pointe; the other is originally from Dakar, Senegal. One is Catholic. One is Muslim. One’s parents stressed education, as did the other’s — just not for girls.

Differences fade in their embrace before they settle into a cubicle with their workbooks at the Dominican Literacy Center on Detroit’s east side. Nogaye Walker’s education ended in the fourth grade. Christine Simon, who worked in retail and always volunteered, is teaching her to read and write.

“She is a very nice lady and always tells me, ‘You can do it,’ ” said Walker, 40, of Southfield.

Simon returns the compliment.

“But you self-correct all the time,” she says. “The thought of me trying to speak your language is just too difficult to even imagine.”

Walker, who speaks French and Wolof, a language of Senegal, represents a growing number of Metro Detroiters seeking literacy skills, especially among those in English as a second language programs.

Nearly half of Michigan’s adults — 44 percent — have minimal literacy skills, no greater than those necessary to perform simple, everyday activities, according to the Michigan League for Human Services.

Those numbers are even higher in Detroit, according to Reading Works, an organization of diverse leaders from the business, education, media, civic and faith communities that is dedicated to boosting adult literacy in Metro Detroit.  READ MORE !

Friday, April 25, 2014

2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service

2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service

Institute of Museum and Library Services Announces Recipients of 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service
IMLS Press Release: 4.24.2014

Mrs. Obama to Present Nation’s Highest Honor for Museums and Libraries

The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced the recipients of the 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries for service
to the community. In its 20th anniversary year, the medals program celebrates excellent institutions that have made a significant impact on individuals, families, and communities across the nation. The award will be presented by First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House on May 8.

These ten honorees exemplify the nation’s great diversity of libraries and museums and include a natural history museum, a children’s museum, a natural sciences museum, an aquarium, a botanic garden, public library systems, and a book center, hailing from ten states.  READ MORE !

The 2014 winners of the National Medal for Museum and Library Service are:

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

World Book Night: April 23

April 23

English Pen
Remember Writers at Risk . . .

Library of Birmingham
Favourite Places of literature on the map . . .

Celebrate with some remarkable reads . . .
. . . We got the scope
SCLLN Literacy
Share - Your Favorite . . .

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Literacy - Spanning the U.S: CA :: IL :: Penn Yan NY :: Pittsburgh PA

Literacy:  Spanning the U.S.

Feedback on Literacy, Library Horror Stories, and More
Library Journal: 4.10.2014

Literacy in libraries
Thanks so much, Rebecca Miller, for bringing this issue forward (“Bold on Literacy,” Editorial, LJ 3/1/14, p. 8). California’s Library Literacy Service will celebrate its 30th anniversary this fall. Currently 97 library jurisdictions annually serve 22,000 adult learners with 10,000 to 12,000 trained volunteer tutors in more than 500 locations around the state. Libraries are ideal settings for literacy services. They are easy to access in communities and are comfortable, information-rich environments where new readers can thrive.

Our most recent annual statewide outcomes show that of those adult learners who set the goal, 72 percent were able to share a book with their child and 65 percent were able to help their children with homework. Also, 65 percent were able to complete a job application, 57 percent wrote a résumé, 50 percent interviewed for a job, and 31 percent actually secured a new job or were promoted at work.

Hooray for all the library staff and volunteers around the country who make this important work happen!
—Carla Lehn, Lib. Programs Consultant, California State Lib., Sacramento

One In Two Illinoisans Struggles With Reading
Progress Illinois: 4.11.2014 by Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service

Adult literacy goes beyond being able to curl up with a good book.  Experts say reading struggles also can translate into troubles functioning in an ever-changing world.

Dorothy Miaso, executive director of Literacy Volunteers of Illinois, says being literate means knowing how to be successful within a family, community and workplace.

She says studies show that one in every two adults has difficulties in one of those areas.

"They may not be able to compute as well, use technological equipment," she explains. "Math has always been a problem. They may not be able to follow editorials, and another thing is health literacy."

Meanwhile, an estimated one in four has severe difficulty with reading, which Miaso says could mean needing a lot of help from others, including with directions in the workplace or elsewhere.

On Saturday, educators, tutors and new readers will gather for a conference at the University of Illinois at Chicago to learn about the latest strategies, techniques and materials to help students and teachers in adult literacy programs.  READ MORE !

Public Policy Sunday: Illiteracy and poverty
Chronicle Express: 4.12.2014

Sunday means more than prayers and hymns for the parishioners of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church; it means examining how their religious belief is to be put into practice to make the lives of other people better. And one Sunday each year is set aside for a special focus for the congregation to examine together.

St. Mark’s has observed Public Policy Sunday each spring for more than a decade, focusing on hunger, poverty, and health, both at home and abroad. Over the years, the program has helped generate support for Penn Yan’s Community Garden, Milly’s Pantry, and Bread for the World. This year’s focus is literacy and the connection between illiteracy and poverty.

Featured speakers for Public Policy Sunday, April 6 were Angela Gonzalez, executive director of the Penn Yan Public Library; Paul J. Miller, executive director of Literacy Volunteers of Ontario-Yates; and Anne Schuhle, executive director of Geneva ReadsREAD MORE !

Adult literacy boost

Right now 6,000 Pennsylvanians are on waiting lists for adult literacy programs. They urgently want to improve their lives through education. The programs do not have the capacity to serve these needy people because of cuts in state funding over the past several years.

Although labeled as “adult literacy,” these programs provide a wide range of services including GED preparation, GED testing, English as a second language and workforce skills training. A report by the Pennsylvania Association of Adult Continuing Education shows that the programs return more than $2.50 to the state government for every dollar invested in them. That is possible because they lower expenses for welfare and unemployment compensation, and they increase the amount of income tax paid as students find jobs.

Adult literacy programs have the ability to lift families out of poverty. We urge state legislators to approve a $2 million increase in funding to serve the thousands of people on waiting lists. Our economy and our state will benefit.

JACKIE KALOCAY HOGG, President, Board of Directors

Saturday, April 19, 2014

2014 State of America’s Libraries Report

Report showcases how libraries stay vital to their communities
Public Libraries: 4.18.2014

“Lives change @ your Library” is the official theme for this year’s National Library Week. To kick off the event, on Monday, April 14, the American Library Association (ALA) released its “2014 State of America’s Libraries Report.” The 79-page report covers all things “library,” including politics, technology, laws, and even architecture.

But maybe the most important news – and a top priority of the ALA – is how libraries are transforming in order to remain vital and integral to their communities. Many of today’s public libraries are more than just warehouses of books and information. They are focusing on how to serve and provide for the ever-changing needs of society.

Before the Affordable Healthcare Act rolled out last fall, the federal government enlisted 17,000 public libraries across the country to help provide information to the public concerning the new health insurance options. Librarians were instructed on how to help patrons find the resources they needed to sign up for coverage. The Westchester Library system in New York held meetings to explain the new laws to small business owners.

Public libraries provide assistance where it is needed in other ways as well. Public libraries in San Francisco are serving their homeless population with an outreach program. The staff is comprised of a psychiatric social worker (employed full-time) and five peer counselors – who were all once homeless themselves. New York Public Library branches in underserved neighborhoods have installed programs to combat poverty and promote education by providing social and academic support to at-risk children in grades 8 through 12.  READ MORE !

Friday, April 18, 2014

Our Library Ecosystem Is Under Threat
HuffingtonPost: 4.16.2014 by Barbara K. Stripling - President, American Library Association (ALA)

The sounds of libraries today reveal the impact of libraries throughout our lives -- from the excited giggles of toddlers in storytimes to the "aha's!" of young people engaged in inquiry to the quiet conversations of senior citizens discovering new authors and using computers to research. All types of libraries -- school, public, and academic -- form a library ecosystem that provides and supports lifelong learning.

For example school librarians teach children the 21st-century skills they need to build knowledge, create and share their own ideas, successfully complete their high school education, and prepare themselves for college and career. Academic librarians enable students to complete their college degrees, building on the skills taught by school librarians, and support academic research and scholarship. Public librarians extend the work of school and academic librarians by providing homework help, literacy resources, and after-school and summer programming. Public librarians take up the mantle of support for lifelong learning by providing resources, services, and programs tailored to meet the needs, interests and aspirations of all of their community members.

Under this view of a library ecosystem, all types of libraries work together to deliver learning opportunities for people of all ages. However, a threat to one part of the system stresses the entire system.

At this moment we are facing a serious threat to school libraries, and thus to the entire library ecosystem.

Data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) show that there is a positive correlation between cuts to school library staff and lower reading scores, whereas states that gained school librarians saw an increase in reading scores.  [*see article below]

As the nation celebrates National Library Week, April 13 - 19, and School Library Month this April, we cannot forget the valuable role all of our nation's libraries play in transforming lives through education and lifelong learning. The American Library Association (ALA) asks that you show your support and stand up for our nation's libraries by signing the ALA's Declaration for the Right to Libraries.

We all deserve the right to libraries and must understand that, when one part of the ecosystem is under threat, we all pay the price. READ MORE !

*Something to Shout About: New research shows that more librarians means higher reading scores
School Library Journal: 9.01.2011 by Keith Curry Lance and Linda Hofschire

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

9 Reasons Why Librarians Are Awesome

9 Reasons Why Librarians Are Awesome

Buzzfeed: 4.11.2014 by Julie Hong

In celebration of National Library Week (4/13-4/19), here is an homage to a group of greatly misunderstood and underappreciated professionals.

  1. Librarians are relaxed!
  2. The Library & Information Science field is evolving.
  3. Special Librarians can also work for museums, law offices, and even orchestras!
But most importantly, librarians make a difference.  READ MORE !

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Literacy - Spanning the U.S: Lodi CA, Pikes Peak CO, Austin TX, Washington DC

Literacy:  Spanning the U.S.

Lodi AAUW members tour library and learn about programs
Lodi News: 4.02.2014

Lodi Branch AAUW (American Association of University Women) met at the Lodi Public Library where Behjat Kerdegari, reference librarian, took us on a tour of the library renovations and invited us back for the reopening which will occur soon.

Yvette Herrera, the literacy and volunteer manager, talked about the literacy program and of its importance in this Women’s History Month. She said that literacy is of utmost importance to people and women in particular. She shared her own story of a father who only went to 4th grade, then worked in the fields so his twin sister could get an education. That sister is now retiring after 36 years as a professor at CSU Long Beach.

Herrera said that 128 of the 213 learners in the Lodi Public Library Literacy Program are women. When asked why she wanted to learn to read, one woman said that she wanted to learn to read and write so she could get a divorce from her abusive husband. She learned to read and write and then went to court, divorced her husband and got full custody of her children. READ MORE !

Tutor Holly Tracy has been helping Colorado Springs adults learn to read for 25 years
Colorado Springs Gazette: 4.04.2014 by Debbie Kelley

It's not that adults who can't read and write are unintelligent or unwilling.

They're bright enough and motivated enough to figure out how to get by in today's high-tech society without those particular skills - in itself a big accomplishment.

"They're very smart. They know how to get around their situation," said Holly Tracy, the Pikes Peak Library District's longest continuous tutor.

But once illiterate adults become literate, a larger world opens up. That's one reason Tracy has been volunteering as a tutor for 25 years.

It's exciting to see when the light bulb goes on," she said.

Tracy has worked with 33 adult learners on an individual basis since 1989, when she retired as a high school teacher and wanted something else to do.

The program is free for students, who must commit to doing homework regularly. Some come and go, Tracy said. "Some start the program and have a problem with work or baby sitters."  READ MORE !

Paul Qui Featured in READ: Feed Your Mind – APL's 2014 Literacy Campaign

READ: Feed Your Mind – the Austin Public Library's 2014 READ poster – features local celebrity Paul Qui, the Chef/Proprietor of qui Restaurant, Founder of East Side King and Top Chef Season 9 Winner. The READ campaign encourages foodies and non-foodies to nourish their brains at the Library. This year, APL's local literacy campaign aims to make the connection between reading and a healthy lifestyle.

Healthy reading habits are just as important to your wellbeing as eating good food. No matter what your taste preferences, the Library is a veritable information buffet certain to satisfy your craving for mental stimulation. Recent studies have shown that reading can reduce depression and stress, improve empathy and protect against Alzheimer's and cognitive deterioration.

Due to his roles in popular eateries Uchi, Uchiko and East Side King, Chef Paul Qui has been an Austin household name for years. In 2012, everything changed when Paul participated in and won Top Chef Texas gaining national exposure. The world fell in love with Paul’s talent, entrepreneurial spirit and obvious passion for food.  READ MORE !

Landmark Report Released on Adult Literacy in D.C.

The Community Foundation’s Greater Washington Workforce Development Collaborative is excited to announce the release of a landmark report by grantee DC Appleseed on the state of Adult Literacy services in the District of Columbia. The report, the first of its kind, urges District leaders to increase their investments in building the skills of more than 60,000 District adults who cannot read or do math at a basic level. The report makes a compelling case for boosting support for adult literacy given the large investments the District currently makes in job training programming, much of which requires eight grade reading and math skills, and education reform given the critical need for parents to play an active role in their child’s education. The report, highlighted today on WAMU, can be found here.

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Place for Literacy Volunteerism at the Library and Museum

A Place for Literacy Volunteerism at the Library and Museum 
By Susan H. Hildreth Director, IMLS
IMLS Up Next Blog: Posted on by mheintz

I’m delighted to join with our partners at the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, in preparation for National Volunteer Week, April 6-12, to cheer on the work of the thousands of volunteers who provide literacy tutoring across the county.  The Campaign’s initiative is aimed at raising awareness of the importance of volunteerism  that helps young children, especially those at risk of low literacy, to learn to read and reach their full potential.

Public libraries and museums are natural partners in this effort.  Not only do these community anchors serve as needed third spaces with meeting rooms for literacy tutoring, they often provide books and supplies, and initiate literacy programs with local partners like Boys and Girls Clubs, Head Start, and schools. Museums and libraries are aware of the need to put books into the hands of young children under the guidance of reading tutors and volunteers. These institutions often use their collections to support unique learning environments and experiences for young children that enhance literacy learning in many ways.

For instance the Minnesota Children’s Museum partnered with the St. Paul Public Library system to install children’s exhibits in two underserved libraries to assure that families and those caring for children in family, friend, and neighbor care settings have local access to literacy-based interactive experiences.  The Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore, Maryland, runs a number of summer reading programs, including “Summer Reading in a Kit,” bringing books, reading logs, and incentives to community-based programs such as church-run day care centers that lack other access to literacy-based services and materials.

Be sure to thank your favorite reading tutors and volunteers for their work.  We hope you will help amplify their work by contributing stories and pictures to the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading’s awareness initiative By spreading the word we can inspire others to take up this important cause.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Read 'em and Weep: The Crazy Ones' Sizzling Season Finale

First Look: The Crazy Ones' Sizzling Season Finale
TV Guide: 4.03.2014 by Rob Moynihan

Read 'em and weep! Simon (Robin Williams) and his team try to keep the local library from closing by using a very unconventional method on The Crazy Ones' two-episode season finale (both airing April 17 on CBS).

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Visual Tour Of America's Most Fascinating Public Libraries: Robert Dawson

A Visual Tour Of America's Most Fascinating Public Libraries
Fastcoexist: 4.08.2014

Photographer Robert Dawson has been on an 18-year journey, photographing America's most beloved public institution: The library. Here are some of his images.

In 1994, photographer Robert Dawson began an odds-and-ends project. Whenever he traveled, he'd take pictures of public libraries. Then, a handful of years ago, he started taking trips across the United States just for the libraries--like the shed that served a one-person county in Nebraska, or the Texas library that housed a "petroleum room" with all sorts of George Bush-themed collectibles. He documented everything from a library found in a suburban strip mall to the the air-conditioned institution that functioned more like a refugee camp in sweltering Detroit July.

All told, Dawson journeyed through 38 states, fascinated and inspired by the common role libraries played in society. Libraries, he found, didn't only serve as a refuge for the poor who didn't have any place else to go, but gateways that opened up all corners of the world to anyone inquisitive enough to take a stroll among the shelves.

"People have various opinions about the government," he says. "But even if they didn't like the government, they did like their public library."

To Dawson, public libraries negotiate the outside world's vast disparities in income and access to opportunity. His recently published book, Public Library: An American Commons, which compiles hundreds of images of libraries across the country, also includes essays from writers who feel similarly; Dr. Seuss, Bill Moyers, Ann Patchett, and Charles Simic are just a few.  READ MORE !

Founder and co-director of the Water in the West Project