SAYL Mail for December 20th

In this issue…

SAYL News in Brief

Gwyneth Jones – The Daring Librarian Coming to Anchorage! (AkASL)

“This is one of the most exciting times to be a teacher librarian, but it is also very challenging. A revolution is at hand. We need to be nimble, daring, and digital.  We need to work towards shifting the way the world views school libraries and start branding and banging the drum about the great things that go on every day in our schools.”

AkASL Proposed Budget and Constitutional Amendment Ballots open through January 18th.  

The AkASL Executive Board recommends accepting the proposed budget found here.  Please cast your vote on whether or not to accept this budget.

The AkASL Executive Board recommends “Do Pass” for each the following proposed amendments to the Alaska Association of School Librarians Constitution.

All current voting members of AkASL are eligible to vote. Online voting is open through 11:59 PM, Thursday, January 18, 2018. Voter verification information needed to ensure only members vote, and only one ballot is cast per member; all responses are confidential.

Need to update your membership status?

Haines School District to Host Puppet Workshop

Leigh Horner of Haines School District secured grants from the Chilkat Valley Community Foundation and the Alaska Foundation on the Arts to fund a 12-week puppet workshop in the school library with the artists from Geppettos Workshop.  The group will build puppets, write a puppet script, build sets and have a community performance.

FCC Dismantles ‘Net Neutrality’ Policy, and K-12 Schools Await Impact (Education Week)

The Future of Fake News (Edutopia)

“It’s time to double down on news and media literacy. Build your lessons on these essential questions to ground students in solid critical thinking habits.”

Highlighted SLED Resource:

Introduce your child to a world of Sesame Street fun!

Sesame Street eBook World
Give your kids an enhanced learning experience that’s fun and educational. They’ll learn from the alphabet and numbers from Sesame Street’s lovable, well-known characters. Find eBooks in English and Spanish, with animated, interactive, audio, and read along formats.  New content is added regularly. Available as an app for iPad or Android tablets for offline access. Paid for by the Alaska Dept. of Education and Early Development.


“Best of” 2017 Lists

Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) Notable Children’s Books 2017

Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) 2017 Best of the Best

School Library Journal Best Books 2017

Center for the Study of Multicultural Children’s Literature Best Books of 2017

Publisher’s Weekly Best Children’s and YA Books 2017

Booklist Editors’ Choice: Books for Youth, 2017

Booklist Editors’ Choice: Books for Young Adults, 2017

New York Public Library Best Books for Kids 2017

Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books 2017

New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books of 2017

Washington Post Best Children’s Books of 2017

The Guardian Best Children’s Books of 2017


Scholarships, Grants and Awards Opportunities

Alaska Association of School Librarians Professional Development Grants

The Alaska State Library, through the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Library Services and Technology Act (Federal Source CFDA 45.310) has generously provided funding for grants to attend conferences and other Professional Development opportunities.

Online events: 40 days prior to event

Closing January 1st, 2018.  AASL Awards season is open.  Ten awards open to school libraries and related programs/faculty ranging from $1,250 to $10,000

  • the National School Library Program of the Year Award, $10,000 and a crystal obelisk, sponsored by Follett, recognizes a school library program that meets the needs of the changing school and library environment and are fully integrated into the school’s curriculum;
  • the Distinguished Service Award, $3,000, sponsored by Baker & Taylor, which recognizes an individual member of the library profession who has, over a significant period of time, made an outstanding national contribution to school librarianship and school library development;
  • the ABC-CLIO Leadership Grant, up to $1,750, sponsored by ABC-CLIO, which is given to school library associations that are AASL affiliates for planning and implementing leadership programs at the state, regional or local levels;
  • the Collaborative School Library Award, $2,500, sponsored by Upstart, which recognizes and encourages collaboration and partnerships between school librarians and teachers in meeting goals outlined in “Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Programs” through joint planning of a program, unit or event in support of the curriculum and using media center resources;
  • the Distinguished School Administrator Award, $2,000, sponsored by ProQuest, which is given to a school administrator who has made worthy contributions to the operations of an exemplary school library and to advancing the role of the school library in the educational program;
  • the Frances Henne Award, $1,250, sponsored by ABC-CLIO, which enables a school librarian with five or fewer years in the field to attend an ALA Annual Conference or AASL National Conference for the first time;
  • the Innovative Reading Grant, $2,500, sponsored by Capstone, which is designed to fund literacy projects for grades K-9 that promote the importance of reading and facilitate literacy development by supporting current reading research, practice and policy;
  • the Intellectual Freedom Award, $2,000 to the winner and $1,000 to the school library of the winner’s choice, sponsored by ProQuest, which is given for upholding the principles of intellectual freedom as set forth by AASL and the ALA;
  • the Roald Dahl’s Miss Honey Social Justice Award, $2,000, a $5,000 book donation from and up to $1,000 in reimbursement towards travel and housing to attend the AASL awards presentation at the ALA Annual Conference; sponsored by Penguin Random House, the award recognizes

Closing January 15th, 2018.  AkLA has established a scholarship program to support the education of librarians by providing financial assistance to worthy students pursuing graduate studies in Library Science.  Guidelines and application forms are available online.

Closing February 1st, 2018.  The Lemony Snicket Prize for Noble Librarians Faced With Adversity.  “The prize will be a generous amount of cash from Mr. Snicket’s disreputable gains ($10,000), along with an odd, symbolic object from his private stash, and a certificate, which may or may not be suitable for framing.”

Closing February 1st, 2018.  Inspire Collection Development Grant.    Up to $20,000 per year for “an existing public middle or high school can extend, update, and diversify the book, online, subscription and/or software collections in their library in order to realize sustainable improvement in student achievement at their school.”

Closing February 1, 2018.  The Ruth Toor Grant for Strong Public School Libraries.  $3000 to create and implement a project that promotes school library awareness and its accomplishments to school officials and administrators.  + $2000 to attend AASL or ALA national conference.

Closing February 21st, 2018.   The Coretta Scott King Book Awards Donation Grant. 60-100 titles by African American authors and illustrators for collection development in latchkey, preschool programs, faith-based reading projects, homeless shelters, charter schools and underfunded libraries.

Closing February 23rd, 2018. Schools in Need Giveaway Program. One free year of BooklistBook Links, and Booklist Online for schools with collection development constraints.

Closing March 31st, 2018.  Ezra Jack Keats Mini-Grant.  Up to $500 “to provide creative, innovative programs that support or extend the Common Core Standards in education”

For the complete record of scholarships, grants, and other award opportunities posted in SAYL Mail, visit the SGA Archives.


Employment Opportunities

Bibliographic Control Clerk II – ASD, Anchorage

Additional and up-to-date information at Alaska Teacher Placement



The latest from the newsletter of the Alaska Association of School Librarians, The PuffinTo submit an article, please contact The Puffin editor, Karina Reyes.

As Seen on Alaska School Librarians Facebook

A roundup of resources shared and questions asked on the Alaska School Librarians Facebook group.  This is intended to give readers the chance to access resources at work if Facebook is filtered.  Only timely questions, announcements, and links to non-Facebook resources are listed here.

12/1 – Has anyone Read”The Ocean in my Ears” by Meagan Macvie, and if so, what do you think? thanks!

12/4 – AkLA has approved a request to add a category to the Alaskana award for a children’s/YA title. Would you like to be on the Ad Hoc Children and Youth Alaskana Working Group? We need library workers from around the state who have an interest in Alaskana children and youth literature.
Thank you for considering!

12/5 – Query from one of my amazing staff: “Does there exist a database of Supreme Court Cases that would allow students to do subject-specific searches and present the information in student-friendly language and format?” Any ideas?

12/6 – School Librarians and Why Our Children Need Them

12/9 – Reporting back from AASL – first up, all about the new Standards! Take a look at my Smore for info and links.

12/14 – Valdez High School Students have been choosing books for their ‘Jolabokaflod’ library giveaway! Curling up with a free book is a great way to enjoy winter break. You can learn more about the Icelandic tradition of the ‘Christmas Book Flood’ here:

12/16 – Another Smore

12/16 – And one more… I’ve got several versions of this one, but this was adapted after AASL, where the sessions on this topic were numerous! Some presenter links are included here. Take a look and let me know what you think!

12/16 – [Sweet freebies in the form of printable bookmarks]



December 25th is Christmas Day, State Library is closed

January 1st is New Years Day, State Library is closed

Kwanzaa is December 26th through January 1st

January is Braille Literacy Month, Book Blitz Month, 

January 23rd is National Readathon

Check It Out Next Time!

To share news, success stories, resources, and opportunities, please contact Jared Shucha.  To get SAYL Mail updates sent to your inbox, request a subscription to the AkASL listserv and ask a colleague to do the same!

[su_frame]Jared Shucha
Alaska School Library Consultant
(907) 885-0660[/su_frame]