Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Aurora Public Library is 100 years old!


Aurora Library celebrates its centennial year

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Posted: Thursday, July 17, 2014 10:53 pm
AURORA — Kathy Kiiskinen has been an avid reader all her life, so it’s a natural fit for her to be president of the Friends of the Library in Aurora, where the library is in its centennial year.
And to celebrate 100 years, librarian Paula Chapman and the Friends of the Library hosted a visit by award-winning Minnesota author William Kent Krueger — who writes books based on a fictional town named Aurora.
Close to 100 people attended the event and potluck dinner at the Aurora Community/Senior Center. “Every seat was filled,” said Kiiskinen, adding that her daughter Kim Kiiskinen is a librarian in River Falls, Wis. In a phone interview she said, “We’re all readers. My kids had library cards before they started school.”
Krueger wrote the Cork O’Connor mystery series, including one to
see AURORA, A12
be released in August called “Windigo Island.” In the series “Cork O’Connor battles vicious villains, both mythical and modern, to rescue a young girl in the latest nail-biting mystery,” a reviewer wrote. This year Krueger won a Northeastern Minnesota Book Award and a Minnesota Book Award for his book “Tamarack County.” He also won an Edgar Award for mystery writing for “Ordinary Grace.”
Kiiskinen laughed when she told of Krueger’s reaction to the large turnout of guests — and the spread of food at the potluck. “This is the Iron Range,” Kiiskinen had told Krueger. Chapman said the event was attended by guests not only from Aurora and the surrounding area, but also from International Falls to Alexandria to Rochester, as well as out-of-state visitors from Florida, Michigan and Kansas. Kiiskinen said the Aurora drugstore “sold a lot of postcards.”
The Aurora Public Library opened on Jan. 10, 1914, said Chapman. Centennial committee members are retired librarian Joyce Banttari, Pat Barnes, Sarah Barnes, Paula Chapman, Carol Haasl, Pat Heikkila, Karen Leiviska and Thea Riebel. Chapman credited Mesabi East graduate Grace Berg with creating the Aurora Library’s centennial logo and Arrowhead Library System graphic artist Brian Minor with designing a centennial bookmark. Officers of the Friends of the Library in addition to Kiiskinen are Barb Hammer, vice president; Peg Bateman, secretary; and Pat Heikkila, treasurer.
To mark the 100th anniversary of the library’s founding in January Chapman had dislayed lists of bestsellers for each decade since the library opened. Chapman said in a phone interview that the 1914 bestsellers included “Pollyanna” by Eleanor H. Porter, “T. Tembaron” by Frances Hodgson Burnett, “Eyes of the World” by Harold Bell Wright, “The Salamander” by Owen Johnson — and “Inside of the Cup” by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.
A Fourth of July ice cream social was hosted by the Friends of the Library and sponsored by Zup’s with close to 200 sundaes served.
Upcoming events include a presentation of Z Puppets at 3:30 p.m. Aug. 5 and a concert at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 13 at the Essentia Health Northern Pines called “Timeless Beauty of Harp and Flute” by members of the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

E-Rate Progam and Libraries

What libraries need from key U.S. technology program

July 10

(AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
I’ve published two posts this week about the federal “E-Rate” program — which offers discounts to schools and libraries  for Internet access and telecommunications — and a modernization plan that the Federal Communications Commission will take up at its meeting Friday.

The first post urged the FCC to approve the plan as a first step in improving the program. It was co-written by Julius Genachowski, managing director of The Carlyle Group and former FCC chairman, and Jim Coulter, a commissioner of the bi-partisan Leading Education by Advancing Digital Commission and co-founder of TPG Holdings. The second post said that the plan before the FCC  is inadequate and does not address suggestions filed by more than 600 educators on how to modernize the E-Rate program to meet their classroom needs. It was written by Brian Lewis, chief executive officer of the International Society for Technology in Education.

In the following post,  Emily Sheketoff, director of the Washington office of the American Library Association, offers a third view on the E-Rate modernization plan.

By Emily Sheketoff

Most parents and families understand that learning does not stop at the school door, at the start of summer break, or upon graduation. Whether it’s education for K-12 or non-traditional students, or early learners and adult learners, libraries complete education. In fact, the Pew Internet Project found that 94 percent of parents say libraries are important for their children, including 79 percent who described libraries as “very important.”

Today, modern library service depends on high-capacity broadband, which the federal E-rate program is essential in supporting. More than 77 million people log on to public library networks in a year. Yet, despite literally being part of the name of the “Universal Service Program for Schools and Libraries” (or the E-rate program), libraries are often overlooked in conversations about modernizing this vital program and ensuring digital opportunity. This is a problem.

America’s libraries are in the center of the reform debate as recipients of E-rate funding and as the only providers of free public Internet access in more than 60 percent of communities. Our nation’s public libraries depend on affordable, scalable, high-capacity broadband in order to complete Education, jump-start Employment and Entrepreneurship, and foster individual Empowerment and Engagement, or the E’s of Libraries™. The services today’s libraries provide are not “nice to have.” They are critical for communities nationwide. Libraries serve everyone from birth through Medicare Part D, and librarians provide the expert assistance integral to successfully navigating the digital world.

Just about a year ago, there was great optimism among those who care deeply about the little-known but critical E-rate program when the Federal Communications Commission took on the challenge President Obama’s ConnectED initiative issued. We planned to set targets for measuring our progress in deploying high-capacity broadband to libraries and schools. We aimed to streamline an application process that everyone agreed was too complicated and cumbersome. And we sought to be the best possible stewards of funding that has hardly budged since the program was established 18 years ago—while cost of living has climbed and technology use has exploded.

Now we hold our collective breath to see whether we will sink into gridlock or find a path forward for our students and communities. If Washington  is not the originator of the “false dilemma,” it certainly is its most active practitioner. This is clear in the charged debate around E-rate reform. The American Library Association (ALA) believes there are valuable nuanced approaches that would result in immediate positive impact for libraries, schools and the people we serve.

We see merit in immediately addressing the widely shared concern about substandard Wi-Fi in library and school buildings to meet mobile technology demands. According to FCC data, libraries have received only 1 percent of the available funding for Wi-Fi and related services over the course of the E-rate program. And in the last funding year no libraries or schools received Wi-Fi funding. At the same time, we hold the Commission to its commitment to ensure these vital community institutions have high-capacity broadband “to” the building, and not just “within” the building. Both are necessary for libraries to provide the nearly endless array of vital services that they offer, including, but not limited to: online digital learning; videoconferencing for small businesses and entrepreneurs, as well as for job interviews; access to real-time healthcare information with medical professionals; and opportunities to connect with family across states, countries, and continents.

Virtually all public libraries now provide free public access to Wi-Fi, and use of these networks in (and around) our libraries is exploding. Libraries host more than 1.5 billion in-person visits each year, and Wi-Fi is now considered a foundational and essential library service that enables access to the public internet, as well as a growing range of digital content. Accordingly, it is vital that the Commission adequately fund internal connections and Wi-Fi, as well as allow for the flexibility, local planning and decision-making needed to develop robust Wi-Fi networks for all libraries and the people they serve.

FCC Chairman Wheeler’s draft proposal—which no one but other commissioners have been able to read in detail—will not single-handedly boost global competitiveness nor will it kill E-rate as we know (and value) it. It is, however, an important first step in connecting all learners to the high-capacity broadband critical for digital opportunity. Wi-Fi doesn’t work without adequate broadband to support it, and there is more work to be done to further improve and strengthen the E-rate program for more productive years ahead. But to further delay action will shortchange our nation’s public libraries and the communities they serve.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Minnesota Gangsters at the Gilbert Public Library

Education, Learning and Libraries at a Tipping Point


Education, Learning and Libraries at a Tipping Point

New OCLC report shows how consumers are resetting expectations for higher education and libraries

DUBLIN, Ohio, 25 June 2014—A new report suggests that the cumulative weight of changing consumer habits, enabling technologies like MOOCs and mobile, and the high cost of postsecondary education are resetting expectations and bringing permanent changes to education and lifelong learning.
OCLC, the computer library service and research organization, today released At a Tipping Point: Education, Learning and Libraries, the latest in a series of OCLC Membership Reports designed to explore emerging trends that impact libraries and librarianship. The report is available to download from the OCLC website.
"OCLC market research has tracked the perceptions of information consumers for more than a decade. Much has changed in the environment over that time. We have seen Google change search habits and Amazon change buying habits. We are now watching online learning services and MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) change the landscape and expectations for education and learning," said Cathy De Rosa, OCLC Vice President for the Americas and Global Vice President of Marketing, and principal contributor to OCLC Membership Reports.
At a Tipping Point looks at the views of online learners—their concerns about the cost of higher education, their experiences with online learning, and their expectations for more convenient, life-based education models in the future.
"The pressure is mounting on traditional models of learning. We see evidence in the research that we may be reaching a tipping point in how consumers think about and would like to manage their education," said Ms. De Rosa. "Students and parents are eager for more convenience and more options in how they learn—they favor convenience over structure, self-service over predefined options. Students of all ages are having success with online learning and, like most services that have moved onto the Web, consumers expect these new services to continue to improve in quality and increase in popularity."
Changes to education and online learning have implications and opportunities for libraries. "The same digital forces reshaping education will reshape library users’ expectations, on our campuses and across our communities," said Ms. De Rosa.
At a Tipping Point provides data on consumer attitudes and perceptions about online learning and MOOCs. The report also includes data about parents' and students' perceptions of campus life and their use of libraries—both at the library and online.
The report concludes with some thoughts for strategic consideration and action for libraries.
"As consumers' needs and preferences shift, libraries have new opportunities to deliver both services and convenience that will increase impact and grow relevance to online learners," said Ms. De Rosa.
See a brief video about At a Tipping Point: Education, Learning and Libraries on the website at http://oc.lc/TippingPointVideo.
Visit the OCLC Membership Reports page for more information and to download the study.

About OCLC

Founded in 1967, OCLC is a nonprofit, membership, computer library service and research organization dedicated to the public purposes of furthering access to the world’s information and reducing library costs. More than 74,000 libraries in 170 countries have used OCLC services to locate, acquire, catalog, lend, preserve and manage library materials. Researchers, students, faculty, scholars, professional librarians and other information seekers use OCLC services to obtain bibliographic, abstract and full-text information when and where they need it. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the world’s largest online database for discovery of library resources. Search WorldCat.org on the Web. For more information, visit the OCLC website.
OCLC, WorldCat, and WorldCat.org are trademarks and/or service marks of OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc. Third-party product, service and business names are trademarks and/or service marks of their respective owners.

Monday, July 07, 2014

July Legacy Programming

Another month packed with programming!

Legacy Event tickets are available for several of the Northern Lakes Music Festival performances including the Opera Carmen in Chisholm and Ely and the Orchestra concerts in Chisholm and Aurora.

Also coming up in Duluth, on July 31st is performance by Jeffrey Madison at Weber Hall on the UMD campus, check your local library for event tickets.

Cuyler Adams and his dog Una will be touring libraries sharing history of the "cuy-una" range that was named after them.  These history players are from the Minnesota Discovery Center so if you want to learn more, pick up Legacy Museum passes for free admission to the Discovery Center!

Have you ever been told your funny? Or enjoy writing comedy? Then attend one of Steve Novotny's Sit Down With Stand Up comedy writing workshops!

And Wanda Gag has one more "author" visit scheduled for Tuesday, July 15th at 1p at the Eveleth Public Library. Wanda Gag is one of Minnesota history's most interesting people who stepped forward in time to share her story. Some people led ordinary lives, others accomplished extraordinary things, but all faced the challenges of their times in history as best they could. See Wand Gag as she engages you with her memorable life stories and travels to New York City to pursue her art career and the publication of her first book, Millions of Cats.

For a full list of events go to:  Legacy Blog 

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Eveleth Public Library Centennial Celebration

Congratulations to the Eveleth Public Library as they celebrate 100 years of service to the community!  If you missed the main event on Tuesday, there are still special performances, a parade and an open house for you to attend. Make a trip to Eveleth to see the wonderful collection of historical materials they have on display recognizing the library, the community and the people of Eveleth over the last 100 years.

Monday, June 23, 2014

"40 Apps in 60 Seconds" Session Review

by Alyssa Carlson

On May 20th, I had the opportunity to attend the "Enhancing Quality Staff (EQS) in Changing Times" Symposium, presented by the University of Minnesota Libraries in the Twin Cities. There was a nice variety of hour-long breakout sessions offering topics of interest to staff at all types of libraries, ranging from educational and informative to entertaining and enriching.

Since this was my first time at this symposium, I chose to focus on the sessions that were most relevant to my organization's work. Each presentation I attended provided a chance to listen to experts and colleagues and all included some new information for me to take away and share to help identify and meet the needs of the library's patrons.

To wrap up an information-filled day, I chose to attend the fun session "40 Apps in 60 seconds", which was presented by the knowledgeable and engaging Leann Suchy from St. Catherine University. In this fast-paced session, LeAnn shared some cool tricks and tips to better help attendees use an iPad, along with an introduction to some of her favorite apps. There are always plenty of new apps that I want to try out myself, but no one wants to waste time deciding which apps are truly worth downloading for use. The great thing about the apps that were presented in this session is that LeAnn has already vetted them, plus they're all FREE!

Here is a list of some of the iPad/iPhone apps that were covered that you may just want to check out yourself!

  • LINE camera - use filter effects and text on images
  • Sphere 360 - 360 degree pictures from around the world, with ability to share your own pictures.
  • Pic Stitch - edit photos and create picture collages
  • CamMe - take pictures from a distance with a timer using hand motion
  • Videolicious - turn photos into videos in 3 simple steps
  • Vine - creates 6 second videos to share snippets of your life on social media
  • Haiku Deck - attractive background images for computer presentations
  • DeckU - easy slide animation for presentations
  • Duolingo - learn 5 foreign languages at your own pace (with offerings expanding)
  • Socrative - (teacher and student app) quiz creation site with great student response system
  • My Script Calculator - math calculator using your own hand-written formulas - helpful and as fun as an advanced function calculator can get!
  • Swell - finds news and podcasts based on your likes
  • Songza - expert curated playlists by mood and location
  • NPR Music - music heard on NPR, plus articles about music
  • Around Me - find types of businesses nearby (e.g. restaurants, banks, parking)
  • Apps Gone Free - daily offerings of wide variety of apps available to download for free

WebJunction Minnesota: Focus on & Sustain Communities, eHealth, WJ Webinars, and Changes for WJMN

Here’s this week’s news from WebJunction and WebJunction Minnesota:
·         WebJunction Home Page Spotlights:  “Sustaining Communities, Sustaining Ourselves,” “Exploring the eHealth Ecosystem,” and more
·         Upcoming WebJunction Webinars, June, July, & August
·         A reminder about changes coming for WebJunction Minnesota (WJMN)
WebJunction Home Page Spotlight

Pew Type-ifies Library Users with New Quiz
Ahniwa Ferrari
 / Published: 12 June 2014

In March, The Internet Project at Pew Research released results from their library engagement poll, From Distant Admirers to Library Lovers -- and beyond: A typology of public library engagement in America. This week, Pew has released a supplemental activity to go along with that research, allowing users to answer a condensed version of that same quiz and compare how they stack up with the general population.

Pew classes this approach as "a little new" and explains, "... we used statistical analysis to cluster individuals into groups based on their usage of, views toward, and access to libraries, ... to discover larger insights about how libraries fit into American culture. This type of work more fully embraces the idea that people's information needs and practices shape their library use as much or more than their skin color, their age, the type of community they live in, or their socioeconomic circumstances."

Sustaining Communities, Sustaining Ourselves
Ahniwa Ferrari
 / Published: 04 June 2014

"When everything is online, why come to the library at all? The library of the future most certainly is not about storing books, but what is it? Well, we get to decide. That means, we get to do what we want, and everything is allowed."
- Chrystie Hill at TEDxRanier - Libraries Present and Future

Aarhus Public Libraries in Aarhus, Denmark, built their new library using a process they call Participatory Democracy in Action. They did so by asking their community the question in the quote above, "If everything is online, why come to the library at all?" Feedback came from all over, children and adults, and had a huge impact in shaping the plan for the new Aarhus library building, Dokk1, which will open later this year on the harbor front in Aarhus.

What they achieved is not just a beautiful new library building offering innovative services, but a library that was planned, from the ground up with the participation of its community, to serve the community in the ways that the community said it wanted to be served. Since the new library hasn't opened, it's still too early to say what impact this type of participatory planning will have, but odds seem good that the library AND the community will thrive because of this connection between the two throughout the entire process.

When the services and space of the library meet the needs of the community, the library will help to sustain that community and the community, in turn, will sustain the library.

Exploring the eHealth Ecosystem
Liz Morris
 / Published: 03 June 2014

As the intersection of digital technology and individual health management continues to grow, so too does the web of resources, policies, and practices for adopting eHealth solutions in diverse organizations and communities. WebJunction’s recent webinar on
Technology Planning for eHealth introduced examples of eHealth adoption from a broad policy perspective -- as well as in unique community settings. The webinar, which was presented as part of the Health Happens in Libraries program, also addressed the always salient topic of facilitating patron privacy when using technology to address personal health and wellness priorities.

ZeroDivide’s McCrae Parker (Senior Program Manager) and Vanessa Mason (Senior Manager, eHealth) reviewed the important role that technical tools like personal health records (PHRs), disease management systems, and SMS and mobile applications are taking on as a matter of healthcare policy and delivery.

For many, the use of technology to support health needs has been most recently manifested through HealthCare.gov, the health insurance marketplace established as part of the Affordable Care Act. However, there are many other technology-based resources to facilitate health information.

Read more >> Exploring the eHealth Ecosystem

Transforming Library Space for Community Engagement
Karen Austin / Published: 30 May 2014

What, after all, are libraries really about? Are libraries mostly about books and study? Or, are they mostly about community and the making of things and ideas?

This question is often batted about like a beach ball in a crowd during discussions about library funding, staffing, programming, collections …. You’ve been there and have likely pondered the question yourself.  It came up early in a May 22 webinar, Transforming Library Space for Community Engagement, and (spoiler alert), it turns out that libraries are about all those things, but mostly about people and their communities. Today’s evolving libraries are weeding collections and rethinking how to give their people the space they need to better engage as community.

The webinar explores the experience of changing the library’s physical space in ways that alter both perception and function. WebJunction Program Manager Bethe Gutsche hosts two librarians whose libraries were selected to pilot a grant from the Washington-based Allen Family Foundation. The grant is designed to explore the evolution of physical space and how that evolution can enrich and create opportunities that connect people with community.

Read more >> 
Transforming Library Space for Community Engagement

Upcoming WebJunction Webinars – June, July, and August 2014

Be Fearless: Public Speaking for Librarians

Wednesday, June 18, 1 p.m. Central, 60 min.

Do you quake at the thought of public speaking? Are you also faced with the need to communicate to audiences, small or large, the importance of your work in libraries? You really can overcome your anxieties and master the art of public speaking. Join us  to learn basic skills for preparing and delivering speeches, plus tips to manage your nervousness and make your presentations more memorable. Armed with practical techniques, you’ll be ready to deliver clear, persuasive, and engaging presentations on behalf of your library.

Presented by: Mary H Stein, Assistant Library Director, and TedxLSU Speaker, East Baton Rouge Parish Library, Louisiana.


Making Your Space: Creators and Makers in the Library
Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 1 p.m. Central, 60 min.

There’s a transformation going on in libraries—a shift in emphasis from consuming information to convening and creating. Makerspaces in libraries are a big part of this conversation, where the learning and camaraderie are just as significant as tools like 3D printers. If the idea of a makerspace conjures up the hurdles for you (limited space, limited resources, or limited confidence in your own tech skills), this webinar will help you learn how to get started and grow a space in your library for creating. Together, we will debunk the hype, learn how to define your library’s scope and audience, get your board on board, and find creative partners in your community.

Presented by:
·         Mara Siegel, Continuing Education Coordinator, Vermont Department of Libraries
·         Samantha Maskell, Youth Services Librarian, Rockingham Free Public Library, Bellows Falls, VT

Libraries as Drivers of Community Development: Global Edition
Wednesday, July 16, 11 a.m. Central, 60 min.

Around the world, libraries are at the heart of community transformation. Instead of seeking to be responsive to emerging needs, libraries can actively push their communities to develop and thrive. Hear stories from around the globe about libraries that are a force to be reckoned with.  Join us for this webinar that shares examples of libraries at the leading edge of positive change in communities in Honduras, Guatemala, Africa, Eastern Europe, and Asia.

Learn about home successful, practical grassroots approaches to library-driven community development.

The organizations and libraries featured are grantees of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation or are beneficiaries of a foundation-supported program. Darren Hoerner, Program Officer at the Gates Foundation, will introduce the session.  Guided by the belief that all lives have equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people live healthy, productive lives.

Presented by:
·         William Cartwright, President and CEO, Riecken Community Libraries
·         Ugne Lipeikaite, Impact Coordinator, EIFL-PLIP (Public Library Innovation Programme)


Top Ten Skills for Teaching Tech to Patrons Thursday, Aug. 14, 1 p.m. Central, 60 min.

Opportunities to provide training occur every time you help someone with a technology related question, whether it’s one-on-one assistance or in a classroom environment.  Making the most of the “teachable moment” involves the right combination of training skills, techniques, and tactics. Technology training is successful when library patrons learn something new and are able to apply it to their lives. You don’t need to be a tech expert to learn the practical skills for successful technology training. Crystal Schimpf will share the top 10 skills she’s found most effective in her years of training experience.

This webinar is hosted in collaboration with ALA's Learning Round Table.

Presented by: Crystal Schimpf, CEO and Learning Facilitator at Kixal

Recruiting and Training Volunteers for Library Advocacy

Wednesday, August 20, 1 p.m. Central, 60 min.

Like many libraries, Michigan’s Herrick District Library has found itself with a leaner staff facing more responsibilities in recent years. The idea of sending employees out of the building to staff community awareness events seemed like a challenging concept. This Michigan library not only developed a volunteer force to meet the challenge, but they now have a sustainable volunteer training and management model to apply in future situations where the library has big dreams but lacks the staffing required to pursue them.

Come hear from a Geek the Library shining star, and learn how to engage your community’s volunteer force.

Presented by: Sara DeVries, Marketing & Public Relations Manager, Herrick District Library, Michigan

A Reminder, Changes Coming for WebJunction Minnesota, July 1

The following announcement was shared via the WJMN listserv on June 10:

State Librarian, Jennifer Nelson, provided the following Update from State Library Services yesterday, June 9:

For several years WebJunction has offered three primary services to
Minnesota libraries—a website with a variety of information related to libraries, access to webinars, and self-paced courses. Anticipating a change in WebJunction’s business model effective July 1, 2014, State Library Services undertook a review and assessment of how Minnesota libraries use the service.

Overall we have learned that WebJunction’s topical webinars and the deep content on the website are used by staff from across the state. While access to these services will remain, there may be some adjustments in the number and frequency of webinars and in the availability of new content on the website as WebJunction implements its new business model.

At the same time, the majority of those who take self-paced courses are from a small handful of library systems. As a result, State Library Services will not be renewing its contract with WebJunction for self-paced courses. The last day to access in-progress courses will be June 30, 2014.

Please sign up for Crossroads, the WebJunction newsletter.  (See the subscription box in the right column of the WebJunction homepage -- http://www.webjunction.org/ for information on upcoming learning opportunities. Minnesota will no longer distribute a monthly newsletter.

State Library Services is committed to supporting the continuing education and professional development of library staff and is actively identifying areas of need. If you would like to recommend areas of focus or would like more information about WebJunction in Minnesota, please contact Jennifer Nelson at 651-582-8791 or jennifer.r.nelson at state.mn.us.


Mary Ann Van Cura, State Library Services
Cecelia Boone, Minitex

Affiliation with WebJunction Minnesota is free and available to members of the Minnesota library community. Tell your colleagues! 

The Institute of Museum and Library Services, a Federal Agency that fosters innovation, leadership and a lifetime of learning, in conjunction with State Library Services, a division of the Minnesota Department  of Education, which administers federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants, supports the WebJunction Minnesota project.