Tuesday, November 20, 2007


Tuesday morning, and I have finally gathered together all my thoughts on the CSLA conference. First, I had a great time. There is much to be said for getting together with like minded people. Just walking the halls and watching the people checking their schedules was fun. Meeting the vendors, and getting to see the products in 3D, not just catalogs, was fantastic. Meeting the SL2.0 folks in person was warm and wonderful. Hey Janet, Rob, & Kathleen, you guys are the best!

Second, I learned a lot. The money magnet session was really practical advise on how to get funding for the library. The poster sessions were really interesting, there is a lot of great stuff going on in the school libraries of California. I LOVED Kathleen Baxter, it was great to get advise on what to look for in non-fiction books. I think its a good time to weed my states books. I most likely have the Minnisota book she slammed. I now have her e-mail and after the holiday I want to get in touch with her to get more practical advise on middle school titles.

The one thing that gave me pause for concern...No youth. Where were all the young librarians? I had this idea that SJSU and was turning out some of the younger set. I saw far too many orthopedic shoes and not enough high heels. We need to start recruiting in a big way. We need to turn our attention to bringing in the harvest.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Progress, we're making progress!

All things happen for a reason.

Last summer when I was at the dump, I picked up the historical German magazines, which I blogged about on July 11th. Then in September I blogged about my concerns for a young man. All this time I have been struggling to make a connection with this boy. About two weeks ago "Aldo" and I were talking, when I discovered his interest in World War II, Nazi's, and the Holocaust. I showed him the magazines...you should have seen his eyes. He immediately understood their significance. When I had him put on the white gloves so he could turn the fragile pages, he was so respectful. I pulled out, Rose Blanche, Cats in Krasinski Square & Legend of the Yellow Star. He began to read. Connection established.

Then comes last Friday. "Aldo" comes into the library, where he is sitting drawing some stuff that could get him into trouble. I gently let him know that it's probably not a good idea to draw those particular patterns. He looks at me and says, "Can I talk to you? Can I talk to you in private?" So we step outside and "Aldo" proceedes to tell me he is having a really bad day. Some kids had been calling him names at lunch and throwing things at him. He tells me that, though he really wanted to fight, he turned and walked away. I told him that I was so proud of him. Then he says, "When those kids pulled your braids when you were little, didn't it make you want to fight?" Chills ran through me, as we talked about appropriate ways to deal with harrassment.

You just never know what kinds of things are going to affect your relationships with students. Who knew that Hitler, Carmen Deedy,and George & Dan from my youth, were all going to meet in 2007, and work to positivly influence this troubled young man!