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Strategic Planning Update
Member Spotlight
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Strategic Planning Update

Activities for the Statewide Strategic Planning on the Future of New Jersey Libraries are progressing on schedule.

The New Jersey State Library and LibraryLinkNJ, along with our facilitators, Abby Straus and John Findlay, continue to work closely with members of the Statewide Strategic Planning Committee.

We’d love to hear your voice! We hope you’ll choose one or more of the options below to share your input with us.

  • Statewide Online Survey (in progress - deadline March 28). Respond today! The Statewide Strategic Planning Committee wants help to envision what our libraries can contribute; where we might shift direction; and, how we can position ourselves to make a coherent case for funders and stakeholders. Add your voice.
  • Libraries Reinvented: Having Your Say (in progress - deadline March 31). This initiative reaches out to students in grades 3-12. What do New Jersey’s students like about their school library? What don’t they like? What would make it a place where they would love to spend time, both physically and virtually? We have invited ideas captured in writing (interviews, articles, and poems), visual arts, music, and video. Contributions will be posted to the Mind Map.
  • Mind Map - This provides a full initiative overview. We encourage all member libraries of the New Jersey Library Network to participate virtually in the process. You can review the notes from all face-to-face meetings and workshops, and we hope that once you have, you’ll consider providing feedback through the email address provided --

Warm thanks to everyone who participated in the Community Engagement Workshops at Hammonton Branch, Atlantic County Library; St Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, Paterson; and Monroe Public Library (Middlesex County). We’ve posted notes from each meeting on the Mind Map.

Next, we’ll synthesize your input from the surveys, workshops, and emails, and hold task force strategy sessions online. Keep an eye on your inbox -- we’ll be inviting you to get involved!!


Member Spotlight:
Lawrence High School LMC

The Lawrence High School (LHS) Library Media Center team, led by Carina Gonzalez, has won a $46,000 grant from the Lawrence Township Educational Foundation to undertake a major renovation of the school’s Library Media Center.

The grant will pay for three major renovations to the school’s Library Media Center:

  • Juice Bar -- Electricity, not a beverage. In an effort to plan for students’ current and future needs, the LMC will feature a new work area with power spheres, spherical structures covered with many outlets for recharging whatever devices students bring to enhance their learning.
  • Desktops to Laptops -- As Gonzalez points out, “Education today is highly collaborative, which doesn’t always work well with desktops. Desktop computers are stationary, which makes them difficult to spin about and face each other. By replacing our desktops with laptops, the entire space will become mobile and flexible. Teachers can pick whichever area in the Library Media Center best meets their needs for the type of instruction they have planned.”
  • Better Shelving -- Currently, the LMC’s shelving consists of 7-foot high stacks, which can be intimidating for reluctant readers, confused researchers and students whose first language is not English. Gonzalez’ plan is to bring the stacks down to 54”, which will “make the stacks a less scary place. We want students to see that we not only have the information they need for classes, but that we also have items that are fun and interesting. My personal research for this grant has shown that reducing the height of shelving instantly makes a library feel less formal, even if the information contained within its shelves has remained the same vital content the students have always used.”

These changes will help Gonzalez and her fellow assistant principal, Alyson Fischer, meet the Lawrence High School Library Media Center’s goal of “encouraging students to view learning as cooperative and unending and, to ensure that all members of the community are accomplished users of ideas and information.” Congratulations, Carina and Alyson! We look forward to seeing the before-and-after photos!

You can follow the LHS LMC on Twitter and on Facebook.



New Discounts

  • EBSCO Ebooks Subscription Packages - through 6/1/13
    25% off retail pricing on EBSCO Ebooks subscription packages for public and K-12 school member libraries. Subscriptions run from 7/1/13 through 6/30/14. Orders must be received by 6/1/13.

Updated Discounts

  • Pronunciator
    Pronunciator has just launched a major new version of its online language-learning software. It has a revamped, user-friendly interface; a total of 72 languages; and a new narrated mode for casual users - with 10,000 photographs.

    See the new version in action during a free, 30-minute webinar just for LibraryLinkNJ members. View available dates and register here.

  • Text a Librarian
    The offer, open to all types of member libraries, included 15% off the monthly subscription rate through 12/31/13, as well as a waiver of the implementation fee through 1/31/13. The implementation waiver is now extended through 4/30/13. The subscription discount remains the same.


CE Updates

Free Webinar:
Serving the Spectrum: Making Your Library a Welcoming Space for Children with Autism and Their Caregivers
Presented by: Kiera Parrott, Head of Children’s Services at Darien Public Library
April 30, 2013 | 10-11:30 AM
Registration is open!

Across all racial, ethnic and socioeconomic demographics, 1 in 88 children is diagnosed with autism. As more children and adults with autism visit libraries, staff must confront new challenges and opportunities to serve these patrons well. In this workshop, participants will get a general overview of autism spectrum disorders (ASD), examples of best practices for serving people with autism in the public library, and specific tips on developing or adapting library programs for young children ages 3 to 8 with ASD.

Learning Objectives:
After participating in this webinar, library staff will be able to:

  • Identify the varied needs and sensitivities of people with autism using library services.
  • Adapt and modify existing service models and programs to better accommodate people with autism.
  • Develop a sensory-based program specifically tailored to children with ASD who are ages 3 to 8 years old. Online Training - Learn Conflict Resolution and Time Management Fundamentals

Yes, includes these essential skills in its extensive training library. You can learn about all kinds of software from Office 2013 to Dreamweaver, but also has a large collection of business, career and personal productivty training modules. Find out what you do best with Discovering Your Strengths and then apply it professionally. Develop your strategic leadership with Thinking Like a Leader. Making a job change and anticipating an offer? Watch Negotiating Your Salary. And many, many more!

This massive online training source is available free to all members of LibraryLinkNJ. Details on the program and our monthly open registration procedure can be found on our website.