Monthly Archive for December, 2008

Register Now for the 2009 Statewide Summer Reading Programs

Registration for the 2009 Statewide Summer Reading Programs (“Be Creative” children’s theme and “Express Yourself” teen theme) is now open! Registration allows your library to request the following:

  • –Program manual with graphics CD for both the children and teen themes;
  • –Basic kit of incentive materials for the “Be Creative” children’s theme containing posters, bookmarks, reading certificates, and stickers;
  • –Basic kit of incentive materials for the “Express Yourself” teen theme containing posters, bookmarks, reading records, and temporary tattoos (the teen basic kits are available to the first 75 registrants only).

NOTE: Public libraries must register by library jurisdiction and not by individual branches. Please appoint one person to register for all branches in your jurisdiction, and request sufficient materials for all.

Register now at

Please direct any questions to Michelle Gebhart,

AskColorado Webinar


AskColorado Logo

Are you a new AskColorado librarian? Are you an AskColorado veteran looking to take your virtual reference sessions to the next level?  Are you looking for concrete ways to engage better with patrons online?

Then the AskColorado: Online Reference Success Webinar is just what you are looking for.

This interactive session will demonstrate tricks of the trade for engaging with patrons from the greeting forward, provide examples and concrete suggestions for working with patrons of all kinds online, and provide attendees with a reference interview toolkit to ensure patrons get exactly the information they need.

Date: January 14, 2009
Time: 10 AM – 11 AM
Prerequisite: Must be an AskColorado librarian from a participating
To register, visit the LEO (Library Education Opportunities) Calendar.
Posted for the AskColorado Policies and Procedures Committee

Cheers to 2008!

With 2009 almost upon us, I thought I’d go the the Colorado Libraries Flickr site and reminisce.  Did you know that there are 572 pics of libraries and librarians across this great state? It was heartwarming to see old friends as well as new faces.  There is an incredible amount of things happening in libraryland! Which reminds me, send your news or photos to any of the folks at CLiC or the State Library. We’d be happy to post your happenings. Make it a resolution if you have to. Cheers!

Learning online with

Back in the late 90s, my employer began offering “just-in-time” self-paced online training from a company called Element K. Element K gave me my first taste with online learning, and I was quickly hooked. I hunkered down and took tutorials on web development, database design, a variety of programming languages and more. Fortunately, my boss at the time supported this, at one point saying, “I’m not sure what you’re doing over there… but it certainly seems good.” I was able to quickly apply what I was learning to my job, and everyone benefitted.

After leaving that position, I looked for a way to continue taking learning and professional development into my own hands. That’s when I came across, and I’ve been using it ever since. is a website that provides quality, thorough online tutorials on a broad range of software and technology-related topics. Individuals can subscribe for $25/month (same price I’ve paid since 2003), and you can start and stop your subscription as often as you’d like. Volume discounts for organizations are available. The tutorials are Quicktime movies delivered in short files – a few minutes long each – making them easy to take at your own pace. The trainers are often rock stars in a particular area: for example, you can learn CSS from Eric Meyer or Molly Holzschlag. Continue reading ‘Learning online with’

Busy, busy public libraries

Feeling like the hordes of patrons never stop pouring in to your library? Trust those feelings, because the stats back them up!

We all know it takes a little while to aggregate survey results. Now imagine that data being gathered nationally… So, bear in mind that these factoids are based on FY06 data.

Across the United States:

• 2.1 billion transactions were made between public libraries and their users in FY 2006; this total includes books, other printed materials and audio/visual resources. This translates to an average of 7.3 transactions for every individual living in a library service area. (97 percent of Americans live in a library service area.)

• 1.4 billion visits to public libraries were made in FY 2006; that’s nearly 5 visits for every individual who resides in a library service area.

• Children are among the heaviest users of public library resources; children’s materials accounted for 35 percent of all circulation transactions in FY 2006, and attendance at library-based children’s programs was 57.8 million.

• Public libraries play an important role in providing internet access to communities. Nationwide, there were 334 million uses of public-use internet terminals in FY 2006.

These are just some of the numbers you will find in a recent report from our federal friends at the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). For more, check out:

Now there’s all the proof you needed to confirm that you’re busy!

Watch the AskColorado ad!

This is so fun! An homage to the old detective movies. Some of you probably listen to Guy Noir, Private Eye on A Prairie Home Companion?

Kris Johnson, AskColorado Coordinator at the Colorado State Library wants you to know that the credit for the production of the public service announcement (PSA) goes to Dee Vasquez and Danny Walter at Pikes Peak Library District. In addition to helping to facilitate the PSA, the CAL Marketing Committee has been working with AskColorado for the past year on re-branding efforts. Kris said “I can’t tell you how helpful this partnership has been to our organization and I want to express my appreciation to current and former committee chairs Kelly Johnson, Katie Klossner, and Shelley Walchak for all their leadership on this project.”

Broadcast ready versions of the PSA for airing on local TV are available. Let Kris know if your library would like a copy. Email her at

Libraries Boost Services to Diverse Groups


Ten libraries are boosting their services to diverse populations by being the first participants in a new program sponsored by the Special Populations & Issues Committee of the Colorado State Library.  The Community Conversations program capitalizes on the position that libraries hold in their communities as thriving and active locations where people mingle for education, entertainment and information.


To encourage libraries to mirror their communities’ composition and interests, the program supports the selected institutions with a $500 grant for library materials, mentorships, and technical advice.


Each of the libraries has designed a ‘Community Conversations’ project for 2009.  The individual projects will engage an underserved or diverse community, create diversity awareness, or serve a particular customer group through an event or activity.  Community leaders and partners will be involved, and the projects will foster dialogue and lifelong learning about cultural differences, as well as celebrate and encourage diversity. 


The ten award winners include: 


  • Adams County School District 50, Clear Lake Middle School Library: Peace Banner International Night for students and families.
  • Arapahoe Library District, Arapahoe County Detention Facility Library:  Mental Health Connections, book talks and discussions.
  • Auraria Library and Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library (Denver Public Library):First Editions & Sequels, exhibition of sculpture and discussions based on African-American women writers. 
  • Fort Collins Regional Library District, Harmony Library:  Asian/Pacific American Outreach and Cultural Festival. 
  • Fort Morgan Public Library:  Women to Women idea exchange and presentations. 
  • High Plains Library District (Greeley), Diverse Worlds Connect @your library, Somali outreach and cultural appreciation. 
  • Mesa County Public Library District (Grand Junction):  Immigrant Outreach Film & Dialogue Series and community engagement presentations. 
  • Pueblo City-County Library District:  Books à la Carte outreach to community sites.
  • Rangeview Library District, Thornton Branch Library:  New English Learners classes, conversations and events.
  • University of Colorado (Boulder), Oliver Lester Math/Physics Library:  Bilingual Education, panel presentation from the college, community and educators.   

The Special Populations Committee leads a variety of statewide programs and projects to encourage quality library service to ethnic minority populations, persons with physical and mental disabilities, seniors, the under-served, and other groups.  Community Conversations is supported by federal Library Services and Technology Act funding.  For information, contact 303-866-6900, or visit



Reference Service – Where is it going?

How critical is reference to the survival of libraries? Should the library profession do more to promote reference services? In less than a minute you can tell us what you think about reference services.

Let us know what you think at:

Why This Topic
The questions on this survey were inspired by a discussion on a national listerv for virtual reference librarians. It was a fascinating discussion with varied opinions being expressed on everything from usage to promotion. Of course, LRS staff were curious about what the folks in library land thought about these issues. So, here is the second LRS 60-Second Survey: Reference Service – Where is it Going?

About 60-Second Surveys
The 60-second surveys are intended to capture respondents’ gut-reactions to questions about narrowly defined, high-interest topics. Taking less than a minute of the respondent’s time, these are truly quickie surveys. This is not a scientific study, but rather a reader poll-style survey (think online magazine survey) that “takes the temperature” of a very specific topic.

Spring CLiC Workshops – Registration Open!

The keynote speaker for all three workshops is George Needham V.P of OCLC. Don’t miss this event, because George has some very thought-provoking ideas on how your library can be a transformational force in your community.

On top of that, there will be over 25 workshops to choose from.

Registration fee is $35/day with breakfast and lunch included!

Grand Junction

The registration fee bumps up to $40/day two weeks before the event, so register early!

Complete a scholarship form and you may be selected to receive two days of registration – free!

U.S. News and World Report’s 2009 Best Careers: Librarian

2009 Best Careers

Our own ALA President-Elect, Camila Alire forwarded this article to LibNet. Great recognition!

Here’s the 1st  paragraph but click on the picture to go to full the article.

“Forget about that image of librarians as a mousy bookworms. More and more of today’s librarians must be clever interrogators, helping the patron to reframe their question more usefully. Librarians then become high-tech information sleuths, helping patrons plumb the oceans of information available in books and digital records, often starting with a clever Google search but frequently going well beyond.”

I rarely feel like a mousy bookworm…how about you? 🙂