Shelf Check #527

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Shelf Check #275 (renewed)

For everyone who listens to storytime music alone in the car:

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"Our Library A-Z"--made with My A-Z, fun free photo app to know

My A-Z is a great free iPad and iPhone app that lets you easily make flashcards using your own images. At the library, I recommend it to parents ("Make multiple alphabet sets with your child! Try an Our Vacation A-Z, a Walk Around the Neighborhood A-Z, Actions A-Z (What should we take a picture of for the 'J' card? How about us JUMPING!", etc). This morning I finished an "Our Library" A-Z to print on cardstock and post in the children's area. All are pics of our library, with the exception of K, P, Q, and R, which I found via a Google search on images that were free to use and modify:

Possible storytime uses for this app: you can make several photo flashcards per letter, so if you regularly have a letter of the week, you could have several flashcard examples of things that start with “D” with photos that you took personally and display them to kids on an iPad. They could be things around your library’s neighborhood, around your library, around your city or state that kids might recognize, etc. You could also “Make Our Alphabet” during storytime, one letter and photo a week—for example, that Action Alphabet (J is the letter of the week. What can we all do with our bodies that starts with J? I know—JUMP! I’m going to take a picture of us all jumping!). Then, revisit the new flashcard the following week (“Who remembers what we did for the letter of the week last week? What action did we do for Our Alphabet photo?”)—re-cementing last week’s letter and showing them the photo, now in flashcard-format, before moving on to the new letter of the week. Other ideas?


Shelf Check #524

Shelf Check 524


Tame the Web is my Alma Mater

...a new guest post I wrote for Tame The Web's 10th anniversary, with a focus on how blogs and listservs--and now MOOCs, Twitter, and SlideShare--provide a place for library paraprofessionals to contribute and participate in ways we are often unable to do in our physical workplaces.


Remember: Twitter

offers excellent opportunities for the proactive librarian to exercise her reference and outreach skills.

Wikimedia Commons: Glyptodon


Marriage Equality signs, library-style

I shared these last night on Facebook, where many are currently replacing their profile pics with variations on equals signs in support of marriage equality. Posting here in case you don't follow Shelf Check there but might still find them useful. Please feel free to share widely! No attribution required.


Much love to the San Francisco Public Library that shared the first image on their own official Facebook page.


Vine for Libraries: 6-second Tutorials for Patrons

I recently enjoyed Robert Mitchell's post Vine Offers Boundless Creativity for Libraries, which rounds up some ways libraries have begun using Vine, an iPhone app for creating 6-second videos you can post to Twitter (or elsewhere, linking to Vine, where they're stored). I love art born of limits--trying to figure out the best way to put something when you're limited to 140 characters, or the form of a sonnet, or 6 seconds of video--and downloaded Vine last night (about a minute after I bought my first iPhone). See Mitchell's post for examples of Vine being used to generate excitement for library exhibits and programs, or capture a few moments in the daily life of a library.

I want to offer up an additional idea for libraries interested in Vine: using it to create 6-second tutorials on how to better use (save time, get more out of, etc) your library. On the public desk, I find patrons are often shocked to learn that you can limit a catalog search by format (just Large Print, just audiobooks on CD--even when they've been using the catalog for years) or an Overdrive search to just Kindle books on Computer Science that have been added in the last 14 days and are available now. Features of your library's website (how to find certain book lists, the benefits of a subject guide), database tips (from how to find Consumer Reports to advanced search techniques), etc--most of these can be demonstrated in 6 careful seconds. And learning about how to better use your library in the occasional 6-second chunk that shows up in your Twitter feed is likely to be a lot more appealing to folks than even suggesting they watch a two-minute YouTube video on any given tip. Vine videos automatically loop, so if you don't catch everything the first time, a few more views are immediately on hand to cement the steps in your mind.

Here are two quick-&-dirty examples I put up early this morning (when no one was really on Twitter to see 'em, as a test). They could easily be made more nicely with sound or voice.

What do you think? Other ideas for libraries using Vine?

UPDATE: See also: Jacob Berg's post on Vine for library instruction at BeerBrarian, and Lucky Magazine's 6-second tutorial on layering (my favorite video from Simply Zesty's 15 Brands On Vine That Are Getting It Right, and another example of Vine's potential for instruction)


Ranganathan's Five Laws of the Staff Fridge

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 (decided to rerun after a Twitter conversation this afternoon about staff fridge surprises)


Shelf Check #520

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OREO's "Whisper Fight" (library Super Bowl commercial)


Shelf Check #519

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Follow Your Patrons

...is the name of a brief slide deck & guest post I have up at Tame The Web, a kind of part two to an earlier guest post on tweeting libraries. I've embedded the slide deck below, too--please set it to full screen if you decide to view it.

I spent a lot of time on Twitter last year, not as myself, but as my library system*. This deck covers some of what I learned. I strongly urge tweeting libraries (and nonprofits, and small businesses, etc) to follow their patrons. Many don't. It's too big a missed opportunity not to mention.

Used thoughtfully, Twitter enables libraries to not just describe what we do, but to do what we do. Here's how:

Follow Your Patrons: Tips on Twitter for Libraries from Emily Lloyd

Please note: I no longer tweet for @hclib--it was a temporary position--and this is a personal presentation made on my own time.



Shelf Check #516

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