NCompass Live: Nebraska Schools and Libraries: Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘Nebraska Schools and Libraries: Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships’, on Wednesday, January 24, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

The Nebraska Library Commission, in partnership with the State Office of the Chief Information Officer, is applying for an IMLS SPARK Leadership Grant to incentivize rural public school districts and public libraries to work together to increase the internet speeds at the public library and provide homework hotspots for students who lack internet at home. This session will provide details about the grant and instructions on how your library can apply to participate in the project.

About the Grant
Grant Application for Nebraska Public Libraries

Presenters: Holly Woldt, Senior IT Infrastructure Support Analyst, Nebraska Library Commission; Tom Rolfes, Education IT Manager, Nebraska Information Technology Commission.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 31 – The Innovation in Libraries Awesome Foundation Chapter
  • Feb. 21 – Why Diverse Literature Matters for Youth Services
  • Feb. 28 – Eleven Ways Your Current Tutorials Are as Forgettable as Barb and What to Do About It

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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#BookFaceFriday “Cora Du Bois”

Relax everyone, it’s time for #BookFaceFriday!

"Cora Du Bois" BookFace Image

We decided to change it up a bit this week and choose a book from our permanent collection. We absolutely loved the cover on Susan C. Seymour’s “Cora Du Bois: Anthropologist, Diplomat, Agent (Critical Studies in the History of Anthropology)” (University of Nebraska Press, 2015). As part of our permanent collection it’s available for check out to anyone. Just ask our amazing Information Services staff! This title is published by the University of Nebraska Press, which we collect from for our state document program. In 1972, the Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.

“Seymour’s meticulously researched biography on Cora Du Bois skillfully weaves together threads from a myriad of often obscure, intensely personal documents, to produce a magnificent reconstruction of the life and personality of this major anthropological figure.”—Carol Mukhopadhyay, Association for Feminist Anthropology (Carol Mukhopadhyay Association for Feminist Anthropology 2015-09-09)

This week’s #BookFace model is Kay Goehring, NLC’s Talking Book & Braille Service Library Readers Advisor/Senior.

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

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Throwback Thursday: Nebraska Wesleyan University 1889, Old Main

This week’s #ThrowbackThursday takes a look at Nebraska’s higher education!

Nebraska Wesleyan University 1889

This black and white photograph, 9 3/4″ X 7 3/4″, of the north and west side of Old Main, comes from the Nebraska Wesleyan University, Cochrane-Woods Library Collection. In 2008, the archives launched an effort to digitize, catalog, and describe photographs of NWU’s campus buildings. The collection consists of mainly exterior shots of individual buildings, along with several views of the campus layout as it evolved from 1891 through the 1970s.

Old Main was the primary building on the Nebraska Wesleyan campus in 1889. Three white buildings appear on the right edge of the photograph and it appears that three men are reclining on the lawn in front of the building. “#39” is written on the front of the photograph in the bottom left corner, while “NE Wesleyan UN-1889” is written on the back.

Nebraska Wesleyan University was chartered on January 20, 1887, and is affiliated with the Methodist Church. Old Main was constructed in a Richardsonian Romanesque style beginning in 1887.

Interested in Nebraska history? Find out more about this photo in the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Community Needs Response Planning Workshops Scheduled

Community Needs Response Planning (aka Strategic Planning) Workshops have been scheduled in locations across the state and online.

What is a Community Needs Response Plan? You may remember it as the Strategic Plan required for Nebraska Public Library Accreditation. To more accurately represent the focus of the plan, we have renamed it. The process of writing the plan and the content remains the same – this is a change in name only, to better reflect why you are creating this plan and how you can use it in your community.

So, do you have a plan? The Nebraska Guidelines for Public Library Accreditation are community-based, so libraries need to know what their communities’ needs are in order to provide appropriate library services that meet those unique needs. That’s where planning comes in!

Christa Porter, NLC’s Library Development Director, will guide you through Community Needs Response Planning for your library. Public Library Directors, Staff, and Library Board Members are encouraged to attend.

Dates and locations:

  • January 26 – Lincoln
  • February 7 – O’Neill
  • February 20 – Grand Island
  • February 21 – Sidney
  • February 22 – North Platte
  • March 1 – West Point
  • March 8 – Online, GoToWebinar

To register for any of these sessions, go to the Nebraska Library Commission’s Training & Events Calendar and search for ‘community needs response’.NLC Logo

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NCompass Live: Dazzling Displays

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘Dazzling Displays’, on Wednesday, January 17, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

Attend this session to learn how to create eye-catching displays based on upcoming events or popular topics. You may be surprised when you see how using this passive programming technique will increase circulation of your library materials.

Presenter: Denise Harders, Director, Central Plains Library System.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 24 – Nebraska Schools and Libraries: Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships
  • Jan. 31 – The Innovation in Libraries Awesome Foundation Chapter
  • Feb. 21 – Why Diverse Literature Matters for Youth Services
  • Feb. 28 – Eleven Ways Your Current Tutorials Are as Forgettable as Barb and What to Do About It

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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E-rate Form 471 Application Filing Window Now Open

The Form 471 application filing window for Funding Year 2018 opened yesterday at noon EST and will close on Thursday, March 22 at 11:59 pm EDT. You may now log on to the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and file your FCC Form 471 for FY2018.

This makes Thursday, February 22, the deadline to post your Form 470 to the USAC website, meet the 28-day posting requirement for the competitive bidding process, and submit a Form 471 by the filing window closing date.

However, we do not recommend waiting until the last day to submit your Form 470. If there are any issues that day, like the E-rate servers are slowed down because it is the last day to submit, or you can’t submit the form due to reasons on your end, like illness, weather, power outage, etc., then you would miss the deadline and lose out on E-rate altogether. So, get your E-rate Form 470 submitted as soon as possible!

IMPORTANT: Before you file your Form 471, check your Form 470 Receipt Notification for your Allowable Contract Date – the first date you are allowed to submit your 471. Do not submit your 471 before that date. Remember, after you submit your Form 470, you must wait 28 days to submit your Form 471. Note: This Notice is no longer mailed to you. It is now sent to you within the EPC portal and will be in your News feed.

Do you need help completing your forms? Do you have questions about E-rate? You’re in luck!

USAC has Form 471 resources on their website:

And more recorded webinars, demos, and training materials are available on the NLC E-rate webpage.

If you have any questions or need any assistance with your E-rate forms, please contact Christa Porter, 800-307-2665, 402-471-3107.

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Friday reads: The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog by Dave Barry

Stressed out by the festive season? Need a light read? A Dave Barry book might be just what the doctor ordered. And if it’s holiday-themed, all the better. The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog was a gift from my sister to add to my collection of annual reading.  It’s about Doug Barnes, an adolescent boy in the ‘60s with a family and a beloved dog named Frank. Frank is quite elderly, and Doug’s mom and dad have already started the conversation about the difficult and inevitable loss that lies ahead.

The story takes place during Christmas, when the annual pageant at St. John’s Episcopal Church is pressing upon Doug and his sister Becky. On a bitter Christmas Eve, a call to beckon Frank from the backyard does not yield a result. How will the family break the news to Becky, who is cast in the host of angels? How will Doug, who made the discovery, rise to the occasion of helping his parents? And how will the family deal with this sadness when everyone is due at the church in a few hours to perform their roles without tear stained faces?

Enter a cast of characters and a rescue dog named Walter. While the topic of pet-loss may not seem to lend itself to a holiday read, remember–this story is told by Dave Barry, who wields a pen to blend both levity and poignancy to produce a smile with a few tears or maybe even some laughter. Also remember that the word “miracle” appears in the title. That may help you decide this short read might be worth your time.

Navigating the holidays often includes a long list of things to do, and for many of us the lack of light can make the endless treadmill of tasks more exhausting. Sitting still with someone else’s story, true or imagined, may help you take a quick and necessary respite.

Barry, Dave. The Shepherd, the Angel, and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog. G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2006.

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#BookFaceFriday “The Miniaturist”

Happy #BookFaceFriday everyone!

"The Miniaturist" BookFace

This week we took a little trip to seventeenth century Amsterdam with our #BookFace post. “The Miniaturist” by Jessie Burton (Ecco, 2015) follows eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman as she begins a life in Amsterdam. Take a little adventure yourself and request this kit for your next book club read! “Burton’s writing is expressive and descriptive. While her prose is rich, it does not overwhelm the story…This historical novel with its strong female characters will appeal to those who enjoy the haunting undercurrents of Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind.” (Library Journal)

This week’s #BookFace model is Devra Dragos, NLC’s Technology & Access Services Director.

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

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Throwback Thursday: Interior of a Telephone Office

Listen up! We’ve got a new #ThrowbackThursday for you!

Located at 325 6th Avenue, the telephone exchange owned by the Nebraska Telephone Company was established in Fairmont in 1882. By 1884, 30 instruments were in use in Fairmont with the central office attending to 300 calls per day, on an average. This picture was taken in 1923 with Lawava Abrams, Mae Crooker McMahon, May Walker, Bess Storm and Alice Crooker Peters.

There was also an Independent Telephone company at this time in Fairmont and rivalry between the two companies was high. Cedar Hill Telephone Company and Scott Telephone Company were also vying for a part of the telephone interest. The Nebraska Telephone Company was bought out by Lincoln Telephone and Telegraph Company on January 22, 1912. One of the first, possibly the very first, Lincoln Telephone and Telegraph exchange was located on the south side of Jefferson Street on the second floor of the building in which the real estate office of Tom Wright was located. At the time, the Independent Telephone Company was housed in the second floor of a building across the street north of Wright’s office.

Interested in Nebraska history? Find out more about this photo in the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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NLC Staff: Meet Cynthia Nigh

Cynthia Nigh HeadshotMeet Cynthia Nigh who joined The Library Commission staff this past August as a Project Assistant for the Library Innovation Studios Grant. Cynthia was born in Reedsburg, Wisconsin where her father worked for Amour Meats and later Dubuque Pack. Every morning he would receive a call with the market prices on the party line early and neighbors on the same party line soon learned what valuable information was being conveyed. Cynthia attended West Delaware Community High School in Manchester, IA and because of an influential Art Teacher named Mr. Renfrow, she applied for and was awarded an Art Scholarship to attend the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls. Cynthia also attended Hawkeye Technical College for Commercial Art in Waterloo, IA.

As a young girl, Cynthia describes her reading habits as constant. She remembers fondly the number of scholastic books she and her sisters would order. A childhood favorite was Once and Future King by T. H. White. A Course in Miracles is another important book to Cynthia as her copy was given to her by her father. The value of this book for Cynthia is that “it helped me look at the world more peacefully.”

Cynthia says the best thing about working in a library is being amongst the stacks. She describes her own house as a library so close proximity to a collection of books is a comfort. The most challenging thing about this position is learning to operate each machine acquired for the grant; what supplies each machine requires; and writing operating manuals for library staff. Apart from work, Cynthia enjoys working in her garden, cooking, and canning with the bounty from her labor. If she could have dinner with anyone she would like to dine with Oprah but not at Cynthia’s house, in a neutral location.

If she won the lottery and no longer had to work, she might pursue more fully her interest in mycology – the study of mushrooms. She might also enjoy fully implementing a craft studio where she could be creative and perhaps a small business could emerge for selling her projects. Cynthia shares her home with her two sons, Dylan and Paul in addition to two rescue cats named Bonnie and Chloe. Because of her Iowa background, I asked what distinguishes life in Nebraska and she answered, Nebraskans are a little wilder and exhibit more freedom in their choices compared to the tucked in manner of Iowans. A perfect day for Cynthia would be laying around watching movies and binge watching Netflix titles. Welcome to Cynthia! NLC Logo

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What’s Sally Reading?

Jason Reynolds on Encouraging Reading

One librarian’s blog, Alicia Abdul, and her list of “Six Sensational YA + MG” titles for 2017. Since seeing this I have checked one title out of the library, and am pleased that two of her six were on Jill Annis and my Teen list for 2017.

But I really hope you will take the 3+ minutes to hear what Jason Reynolds has to say about reluctant readers. Makes good sense. It is included on this page, right under his title Long Way Down.

 

I was tempted to include my review of Long Way Down but thought that might be redundant.  Instead here is my review of brave by Svetlana Chmakova.  A full-color graphic novel: Jensen, is just starting middle school and still trying to figure it out. He knows to avoid Foster and Yanic – they are never nice. He sees the school as a video game, all he needs to do is survive to the end of the day. Math is hard, but he lives for art club after school. He becomes involved with the newspaper crew as an on-call helper, and then as a possible subject for their bullying article. He isn’t certain he is being bullied, aren’t his “friends” just joking with him? He slowly finds his way and eventually speaks up on his own behalf.

(The Nebraska Library Commission receives free copies of children’s and young adult books for review from a number of publishers. After review, the books are distributed free, via the Regional Library Systems, to Nebraska school and public libraries.)

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What’s Up Doc? New State Agency Publications at the Nebraska Library Commission

New state agency publications have been received at the Nebraska Library Commission for December 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, the Nebraska Forest Service, the Nebraska Public Power District, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link above, or directly in the .pdf below.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian, or contact Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

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Friday Reads: Death and the Virgin Queen: Elizabeth I and the Dark Scandal That Rocked the Throne

The circumstances surrounding Amy Robsart’s death in 1560 have haunted historians for more than 450 years. Was she pushed down the stairs or did she trip and fall? Was she poisoned and her body positioned to look like an accident? Death and the Virgin Queen: Elizabeth I and the Dark Scandal That Rocked the Throne by Chris Skidmore attempts to answer these questions.  Skidmore argues that his reexamination contemporary records, as well as the long-long coroner’s report of Amy death and a contemporaneous journal kept by an unknown individual, sheds new light on this enduring mystery.

Robsart’s passing would have attracted little attention if she had not been the wife of Elizabeth I’s favorite courtier Robert Dudley. In the months and years leading to Robsart’s fatal fall, Dudley rarely left Elizabeth’s side. In fact, rumors swirled not only through the English court, but through other European courts as well, that Elizabeth and Dudley were engaged in a passionate affair.  While Dudley attended to England’s queen, Robsart lived a quiet, but transient life – staying with friends and family because the Dudleys lacked a permanent home. Dudley rarely visited Robsart, but made sure she never lacked for funds and other necessities.

Why the mystery then? Skidmore suggests that Robsart’s death was long expected by members of Elizabeth’s court. Prior to Amy’s death, rumors had circulated that she was in poor health and/or she was being poisoned. Skidmore cites several instances where courtiers and foreign ambassadors speculated that once Dudley was free of his wife, he would marry Elizabeth I. The circumstances surrounding Amy’s sudden passing become murkier when Skidmore reveals that Elizabeth mentioned Robsart’s death to the Spanish ambassador prior to it becoming public knowledge.

Skidmore focuses his examination primarily on Dudley – his motives and how he might have carried out this deed. Despite the introduction of new documents and a reinterpretation of existing facts, Skidmore fails to provide additional insight into Robsart’s death. The basic facts are unchanged: Robsart’s body was found at the bottom of a short flight of stairs. She encouraged the household to attend a nearby fair, leaving the house largely empty. Perhaps if Skidmore had looked at suspects beyond Robert Dudley, he would have brought something new to the table. For example, other courtiers such as Dudley’s enemy Sir William Cecil could have arranged for Robsart’s death in order to tarnish Dudley’s reputation. However, Skidmore successfully demonstrates that Robsart’s mysterious death colored people’s treatment of Dudley, as well as destroyed any chance of marrying Elizabeth.  Ultimately, too much time has passed and too little evidence has survived for this mystery to be solved.

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#BookFaceFriday “Looking for Alaska” & “Reconsidering Happiness”

We’ve got a double #BookFace for you today book lovers!

#BookFace Holly Woldt

I know the new year is supposed to be all about starting new goals and breaking bad habits, but we decided to put that off for one more week. Besides, my New Year’s resolution is always to read more books, and I was probably going to do that anyway.  This #BookFaceFriday we decided to indulge in a bad habit instead with John Green’s “Looking for Alaska” (Speak, 2006) and “Reconsidering Happiness” by Sherrie Flick (Bison Books, 2009). Both novels have 4.5 – 5 star ratings on Amazon and are available to borrow as book club kits through your library!

This week’s #BookFace model is Holly Woldt, NLC’s Library Technology Support Specialist. (P.S. we did not actually light up in the Library Commission, that would be against the rules.)

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

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Friday Reads: A Year in Review

The NLC staff have done a lot of reading this year! We wanted to take a look at all the great books we’ve reviewed in 2017.

2017 Friday Reads CollageYou might be familiar with our weekly blog series Friday Reads; every Friday, a  staff member at the Nebraska Library Commission posts a review of a book. From memoirs to science fiction, murder mysteries to home organization, we’ve shared what we’ve read and why we’ve read it.

Former NLC staffer Laura Johnson created this series to model the idea of talking about books and to help readers get to know our staff a little better. Readers advisory and book-talking are valuable skills for librarians to develop, but they are ones that take practice. We hope that our book reviews will start a conversation about books among our readers and encourage others to share their own reviews and recommendations.

The series has been going strong for 3 1/2 years and has produced over 150 reviews, which are archived on the NCompass blog (http://nlcblogs.nebraska.gov/nlcblog/tag/friday-reads/,) or you can browse a list of reviews here: http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/BookReviews.aspx.

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Friday Reads: The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia, by Masha Gessen

Just over a month ago, on November 15, Masha Gessen’s The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia won the 2017 National Book Award for Nonfiction. Since my knowledge about Russia, which has been omnipresent in the news lately, is lacking, and since I’ve had positive experiences with nonfiction National Book Award winners in the past, I tracked down a copy. I’ve been working my way through it ever since.

Gessen, a journalist and LGBT rights activist, was born in Russia in 1967 and immigrated to the United States with her parents and siblings in 1981. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, she returned to Moscow, eager to report on new freedoms and opportunities in what appeared to be an emerging democracy. She returned to the United States in 2013, when anti-gay legislation and rhetoric posed a serious threat to her, personally, and to her rights as a gay parent.

The task Gessen sets for herself in this book is to document not only what has happened in Russia over the last 30 years, but also to explore the how and the why. As she states in her prologue, she wanted to tell the story of “[t]he crackdown, the wars, and even Russia’s reversion to type on the world stage,” but also “to tell about what did not happen: the story of freedom that was not embraced and democracy that was not desired.”

She does this in part by tracking the lives of seven real people (her “main characters” or “dramatis personae”). Four were born in the early- to mid-1980s, just before Mikhail Gorbachev declared glasnost (openness) and perestroika (restructuring). Their stories allow Gessen “to tell what it was to grow up in a country that was opening up and to come of age in a society shutting down.” The other three were older intellectuals—a psychoanalyst, a sociologist, and a philosopher–“who had attempted to wield [the intellectual tools of sense-making], in both the Soviet and post-Soviet periods.”

I’m usually all about the personal stories used to bring historical and political nonfiction to life. In The Future is History, however, I’m actually more taken with the expository writing that appears between check-ins with Gessen’s protagonists. That’s because Gessen, with her reporter’s background, is just so good at explaining complicated social, political, and historical dynamics.

There’s no way to provide an adequate synopsis of this book’s content in a six-paragraph blog post. But, if you’re like me and have only superficial knowledge of the subject matter, I can almost guarantee that time spent with The Future is History will pay huge dividends in terms of your Russian literacy. And given the current news cycle, you will start reaping the rewards immediately. My investment has paid off several times already – and that’s just in the last week!

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#BookFaceFriday “Holidays on Ice”

Happy #BookFaceFriday from the Nebraska Library Commission & have a Happy New Years!

#Bookface "Holidays On Ice"

When a novel just sounds like too much commitment, the perfect solution is David Sedaris’s collection of short stories! “Holidays on Ice” (Back Bay Books, 2010) covers all our favorite holidays with this great collection of witty stories. Check it out for your book club today!

This week’s #BookFace took a trip to Omaha to visit Aimee Owen’s Christmas Village!

Love this #BookFace & reading? We suggest checking out all the titles available for book clubs at http://nlc.nebraska.gov/ref/bookclub. Check out our past #BookFaceFriday photos on the Nebraska Library Commission’s Facebook page!

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What’s Sally Reading?

School Library Journal’s Best Books 2017

Once again it is time for journals to print (or post) their choices for “Best Books of…” lists. School Library Journal recently posted their choices and the lists can be found here.

A total of 71 titles have been honored this year, divided into the following categories: Picture Books (14 titles), Chapter Books (1 title), Middle Grade (13 titles), Young Adult (18 titles) and Nonfiction (25 titles). I enjoy learning about excellent titles I did not encounter earlier, and also finding some agreement with some I have read and put on my lists. Now here is the chance for you to do the same.

On the main page, scroll down to find a form to fill out in order to download, at no charge, a printable PDF version of the full list.  There is also an “Other Bests” link on the right side of the screen which contains a print list of six additional categories, such as “Top 10 Graphic Novels,” “Top 10 Audiobooks,” and “Top 10 Apps.”  I hope you can find some time to explore these pages.  For the Best Books of 2017, once you click on one of the categories you will see a slide show of the titles.

One of the selected picture books from 2017 is The Three Billy Goats Gruff, adapted and illustrated by Jerry Pinkney, gives readers another wonderful retelling of a popular folktale with outstanding artwork.  The author notes at the back of the book that this story gave him trouble because in many versions the Troll does not have the opportunity to learn his lesson.  Mr. Pinkney found a satisfying way for this to happen in his version.  I will say it again: It is great that Pinkney is retelling both folktales and fables so children today can continue to hear them.

(The Nebraska Library Commission receives free copies of children’s and young adult books for review from a number of publishers. After review, the books are distributed free, via the Regional Library Systems, to Nebraska school and public libraries.)

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New Year’s Resolution? Try United for Libraries Training Resources!

Nebraska libraries are invited to use the resources and support of United for Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. The Library Commission supports membership to United for Libraries for all of the state’s public libraries
to ensure that Nebraska library staff, friends, trustees, and foundations can take advantage of services to enhance fund raising, advocacy, and public awareness.

Nebraska libraries are encouraged to use a special website (www.ala.org/united/Nebraska) to access resources, webinars, online training, and publications for Nebraska library trustees, library directors, and library staff at no charge to the participating library, including: Trustee Academy Five online courses; Short Takes for Trustees Ten 10-minute training videos; Engaging Today’s Volunteers for Libraries and Friends Webinar series on volunteer recruitment and retention; Friend Your Library Bookmark and Poster Files Free downloadable promotional items; Recorded Webinars Just-in-time webinar training on topics like Troubled Library Boards and Merging Friends and Foundation; Resource Collection Zones Current and archived newsletters, toolkits, electronic publications, special offers, etc. for Library Boards, Friends, and Foundations; and Power Guide for Successful Advocacy A step-by-step guide to developing an advocacy campaign, with examples of talking points, flyers, petitions, etc. at http://www.ala.org/united/powerguide.

Additionally, United for Libraries is accepting applications for the United for Libraries Friend Conference Grant through Jan. 15, 2018. This grant enables one member of a Friends of the Library group at a public library to attend the ALA Annual Conference. First-time Conference attendees, who are active in their public library Friends group, can receive a grant of $850, plus full ALA Annual Conference registration. For more information and to apply, see www.ala.org/united/grants_awards/friends/united.

United for Libraries brings together library voices to speak out on behalf of library services and free public access to information. This national network of enthusiastic library supporters stresses the importance of libraries as the social and intellectual centers of communities and campuses—educating and organizing the strongest voice for libraries: those who use them, raise money for them, and govern them.

For more information see United for Libraries at http://www.ala.org/united/

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NCompass Live: The Next Best Thing to Having Your Own Gigabit Internet

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘The Next Best Thing to Having Your Own Gigabit Internet’, on Wednesday, December 27, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

Did you know that every Nebraska public school district is connected via fiber to the statewide network, and each is capable of 1,000Mbps Internet or more? Did you know that most Nebraska public libraries are within 1-2 miles of a public school building but fewer than 15% report their Internet capacity in excess of 25Mbps? Did you know that approximately 50,000 K-12 students do not have Internet at home? What if there was a way to partner to share school district Internet with your library at minimal cost AND qualify for E-rate without excessive filtering? Attend this session to find out about this closely guarded infrastructure secret and learn how to strike up a relationship with your local public school district.

Presenters: Tom Rolfes, Education IT Manager, Nebraska Information Technology Commission; Holly Woldt, Senior IT Infrastructure Support Analyst, Nebraska Library Commission.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 3, 2018 – Best New Children’s Books of 2017
  • Jan. 31, 2018 – The Innovation in Libraries Awesome Foundation Chapter

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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