Children and Grief: Presentation Reflection

The presentation as a whole went over very well. Our slides were informative, the sources were reputable, and our manner was professional in accordance with the audience. However, there were a few things that could have been improved upon. At the beginning, rather than just jumping into the recommendations we should have touched upon the behavior of a grieving child. Thus parents would know what to watch out for and tips on how to handle the behavior. It would also have been beneficial to mention the parameters of the conversation (or conversations) so parents would understand how to discuss death with their child. If we had done this we could have continued to connect the specific sources back to this base and explain how each source can aid the conversation. This would have better tied the presentation together in a smoother and neater manner rather than the somewhat jumpy route that we took by introducing different sources without a base.  It would have also been beneficial for us to have provided materials in other languages. Overall, we do believe our presentation would have been a more complete success with these changes. While a delicate topic, we believe we handled it with understanding and patience.  

The Long Overdue Graphic Novel Post


Here it is! The Long Overdue Graphic Novel Post!  I adore graphic novels and felt that all my scrambling to write this post on time was useless if I didn’t get anything out of the post other than finishing it.  I also wanted to read something new from one of my favorite genres (?? graphic novels come in all forms and about all things, can they really be considered a genre or are they just more of a “style”?).  Anyways, without even FURTHER ado: The Graphic Novel Post.


Bibliographic Information:
Roller Girl. By Victoria Jamieson. Dial Books, 2015. 240 pages.

Recommended ages: 9-13

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Kirkus Review of Roller Girl
School Library Journal’s Summary of Roller Girl

A Newbery Honor book
2016-2017 Texas Bluebonnet Award winner
A New York Times Bestseller
A Spring 2015 Indie Next Pick
A New York Times Book Review Notable Children’s Book of 2015
A New York Public Library Best Book for Reading and Sharing of 2015
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2015
A School Library Journal Best Book of 2015
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2015
A Top 10 Latin@ Book of 2015
A Parents Magazine Best Children’s Book of 2015
A Chicago Public Library Best Book of 2015
A Texas Bluebonnet Award 2016-2017 nominee
A 2016 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers selection
A 2016 YALSA Popular Paperback selection
An ALA Notable Children’s Book of 2016
A 2015 Nerdy Book Club Award Winner for Best Graphic Novel

Educational Connections:
This book may not specifically relate to common core but it would be excellent for readers 9-13 who may identify as outsiders as the main character does and for whom reading is a struggle or a chore.  The crisp illustrations aid in the telling of the story as does the dialogue.  Especially friendly for those who dislike to read are the many (but not too many) pages with minimal text, giving the reader a short break from the words.

Smile by Raina Telgemeier
Paper Girls by Cliff Chiang
Dorothy’s Derby Chronicles (Roller Derby Graphic Novel Series) by Meghan Dougherty
Jam! Tales from the World of Roller Derby by Various Authors


I chose this comic because this is a story I really wanted to read.  I firmly believe that I am not alone in this.  The bright colors of the illustrations and the well-executed characters and the relationships between them create an story.  Humor is woven throughout as well as emotionally relatable content.  This graphic novel would especially appeal to girls in fifth or sixth grade who are moving on into puberty and middle school at completely different stages.  Many will relate with main character Astrid, as she feels alone in the world as her friendships change with age and the approach of junior high.
Jamieson, V. (2015). Roller Girl. New York, NY: Dial Books.

Kirkus. (2015, March 10). Roller Girl [Review of the book Roller Girl]. Kirkus. Retrieved from

School Library Journal. (2015). Roller Girl [Summary of the book Roller Girl]. School Library Journal. Retrieved from

Selection Assignment Geared Towards Ages 6-8

Astoria Library’s Springtime Selections

The sun is shining and the leaves are green.
Get out and explore with your library!


Head out to Astoria Park!

1) The Beetle Book by Steve Jenkins

Enter the creepy crawly world of beetles!
Check outside under rocks and bushes.
What beetles can YOU find?the beetle book

2) The Broadway branch Nature Crafts Workshop, Wednesdays in May 4:00- 5:00 PM

Do you like crafts?
Find an adult and take a walk to the Broadway branch for nature fun!


3) Microcosmos (DVD)

Do you have bugs on the brain?
Check out Microcosmos to see your favorite bugs in their own homes.
Ask a librarian to put it on hold for you!


4) The Big Book of Nature Activities by Jacob Rodenburg and Drew Monkman (E-Book)

A book of crafts and activities for all four seasons. Go outside and see what you can create!
An adult can download it so you can take it on the go!


5) National Geographic Book- Bees by Laura Marsh

What’s the buzz on bees?
Go out and find the bees in your neighborhood
What could they be doing on those flowers?
Explore this book to find out!


6) Oh Ranger! Parkfinder (App)

Find the best parks for your favorite activities,
grab an adult and explore!


7) The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle (Easy Reader)

How do flowers grow?
Learn about your favorite spring plants in this colorful world.


8) A Teddy Bear’s Picnic and Other Stories by Geoffrey Hayes (Graphic Novel)

A book about the joys of a meal outdoors,
take an adult to the park or meet with friends outside your building.
Enjoy picnicking!

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9) A Leaf Can Be by Laura Purdie Salas (E-book)

Read about lives of the leaves in your neighborhood.
Leaves are lovely!

a leaf can be

10) A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Aston
Read this with an adult before bed after a long day of exploring.


Queens Library. (2017). Kids Nature Crafts. Retrieved from

Maslin, J. (1996, October 9). Bee loves orchid; little beetle works very hard [Review of the movie
Microcosmos]. The New York Times. Retrieved from

Douglas, A. (2016, July 3). Summer reading: The big book of Nature activities [Review of the book The big book of nature activities]. Parenting Through the Storm. Retrieved from

Barclay, K. H., Stewart, L.D., Lee, D.M. (2014). The everything guide to informational texts, k-2: Best
best texts, best practices. Newbury Park, CA: Corwin Publishing.

Vanhemert, K. (2011, December 6). Review: APN Media Oh, Ranger! Parkfinder [Review of the app
Oh Ranger! Parkfinder]. Wired. Retrieved from

Smith, M. (2015, November 12). Traditional Thursdays: The tiny seed [Web log] Retrieved from

American Library Association. (2010). Theordor Seuss Geisel Award [Benny and Penny in the big no-
no!]. Retrieved from

Booksource. (2017). IRA teacher’s choices reading list. Retrieved from reading-list.aspx

The Benefits of an App Store

Apps, for many not fully indoctrinated into technical culture, can be daunting.  From personal experience, some of the most time-consuming questions asked in the library are in regards to library apps and how to download and use them.  While the apps themselves may be quite simple to use, the process of matching the download process to the user’s cell phone (android vs. apple) created a confusing process.  In the article “Marketing Library Mobile Resources: Welcome to the App Store” Michael Blake discusses his creation of an “app store” for his library thus making apps simpler to find, learn about, and download by using a familiar looking platform that is proven easy to use.

I found this article to be interesting because while of course the content of the apps is important they are lost if they are difficult to find and download.  In the readings from Becoming a Media Mentor the importance of tailoring material to patrons is discussed.  The same is true of accessing material.  If a library has a large population for whom digital literacy is a challenge it would make sense to create a simpler way to access the digital content that they may wish to use but have difficulty finding.


Blake, M. (2014). Marketing library mobile resources: welcome to the library app store.
            Computers in libraries, 34 (3) 4-6,8.

The Importance of Intellectual Freedom in Children’s Librarianship

Intellectual freedom is the right of every individual to seek and receive information from all points of view without restrictions. This freedom is the basis for our democratic system and allows citizens to be well informed of any topic. It is important that kids have diverse material options so they can learn to make their own decisions. Encouraging and protecting the free flow of viable information to children and their guardians is vital. The School Library Media Centers and Intellectual Freedom webpage states that, “students’ right to access to information includes the right to develop skills necessary to locate and obtain materials and to examine critically and interpret the information that they find.” Children’s librarians provide the best materials to teach children how to locate accurate and reliable information and become critical thinkers.

A children’s librarian must be prepared for material challenges as children’s materials are often criticized by adults. According to a study done by Jaclyn Lewis Anderson, the youth services director of the Madison County Library system found that it is most often parents challenging materials that they find inappropriate for all children. A children’s librarian needs to explain that while the parent has the right to choose what materials their child has access to, this does not apply to all children within the library system. Often this attempt to ban or censor a material adds interest as shown in a different study conducted on children’s views of censorship by Natasha Isajlovic-Terry and Lynne McKechnie. They found (through interviews) that children understand that some materials are meant for adults, but some children do not believe that their parents or guardians should have total control over their reading materials. It was also understood that if an adult were to view something that they had accessed to be inappropriate and it was banned the child would use their own agency to regain access to the controversial material. Children are intelligent and adults need to recognize their ingenuity to become knowledgeable, the best way to do that is to have access to the right information. Intellectual Freedom is a core value for children’s librarians as a means to provide access to valuable information without restrictions.

Annotationed Source Recommendations for Librarians:

Asato, N. (2011). The origins of the freedom to read foundation: public librarians’                            campaign to establish a legal defense against library censorship.                                      Public Library Quarterly, 30(4), 286-306.

This source would be extremely useful for librarians looking to explain library censorship and the library’s censorship protections to library patrons who may be looking to challenge a material they find problematic. A base history of some of the legal cases may also give a librarian more confidence in dealing with this delicate situation.

Stauffer, S. (2014) The dangers of unlimited access: fiction, the internet and the social                     construction of childhood. Library and Information Science Research,                              36(3-4), 154-162.

The internet is a constant issue in the censorship debate, is there such thing as too much internet freedom and if so, how much is too much?  This article addresses both sides of the internet argument, the laws put in place regarding it, and can aid a librarian in creating a plan for their own library in regards to children and the internet.

Isajlovic-Terry, N., McKechnie, L. (2012). An exploratory study of children’s views of                      censorship. Children & Libraries: The Journal of the Association for Library                    Service to Children, 10 (1), 38-43.

As mentioned above this article focuses on children’s opinions of censorship and the ways in which they operate regarding censored materials. It’s useful for a children’s librarian to understand their patrons, their needs, and their opinions on materials.

Anderson, J. (2014). The classification of censorship: an analysis of challenged books                   by classification and subject heading. The Journal of the New Members                           Round Table, 5(1), 1 -18.               

Children’s Librarians can refer to the study to get the most frequently challenged subjects and the reader audiences most affected by these challenges. While they are creating their collections they can refer to past book challenges and be wary of future objections to their children’s collection.

Intellectual Freedom: Issues and Resources. Retrieved April 18, 2017, from                            

Librarians can get direct information regarding intellectual freedom for the ALA website. If needed they can get direct quotes regarding children’s right, toolkits, guidelines, and more insights to inform the patrons of their rights.  

Oltmann, S. M. (2016). Public Librarians’ Views on Collection Development and                              Censorship. Collection Management, 41(1), 23-44.                                                                 doi:10.1080/01462679.2015.1117998

 The study is a valuable resource for librarians, as colleagues were asked about the pressure in developing collections, agreement with intellectual freedom statements and correspondence regarding personal beliefs and intellectual freedom statements. The paper resulted in the overall belief of intellectual freedom being a core value for the profession of librarians.  


Anderson, J.C. (2014). The classification of censorship: an analysis of challenged books                    by classification and subject heading. Endnotes, 5(1), 1-18.

Isajlovic-Terry, N., McKechnie, L. (2012). An exploratory study of children’s views of             censorship. Children & Libraries: The Journal of the Association for Library                     Service to Children, 10 (1), 38-43.


Book Review #3: King & King


King & King by Linda de Haan and Stern Nirjland is well-known for being a controversial picture book.  The book centers around a prince and his mother, the queen , who no longer wishes to run the kingdom, the prince is to be married so as to secede her.  After meeting all the world’s princesses, the prince finds his true love, Prince Lee.  They are married in a lovely ceremony.  This book has been challenged in many libraries as being an indoctrination of homosexuality and a threat to traditional marriage.

It is due to these themes that this book is worth reading and sharing with children.  The vast majority of children’s books, especially fairy tales, focus on the relationships of a prince and princess.  By using this familiar trope and turning it on its head, without negative reaction from any characters, shows children that this marriage is just like all the other marriages in fairy tales: they live happily ever after.

While this book does an excellent job in portraying a same sex relationship as the norm it fails in its portrayal of women, specifically women of color.  This issue must be addressed as it is a glaring offense in what is otherwise a lovely story.

de Haan, L., Nijland S. (2000). King & King. New York, NY: Random House.


The Sibert Award and the NSTA Award

Having never had a passion for nonfiction the Sibert Award and the NSTA Award were introduced to me during the homework assigned for this week.  I read one winner (or honorary) title of both awards and found the differences between the two books intriguing.  The Sibert Award honorary title that I read was
Giant Squid by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohman:

and the NSTA Award winning title was Polar Regions from the About Habitats series.


The two books were both accurate in their facts and kept to their nonfiction roots (no talking animals or fantastical sequences); but it is the differences between the books that are more interesting.  Giant Squid uses poetic language and beautiful disjointed imagery (even a large, folded, pull-out image) in a playful manner to express the mysteries of the animal and the small amount of information that scientists have been able to gather on this elusive creature.  In opposition, Polar Regions uses short one sentence descriptions and exact landscape drawings to show different plates of the Antarctic.  It seems that the NSTA Award honors books that appeal more to lovers of the nonfiction genre while the Sibert Award’s books appeal more to fiction readers looking to explore the world of nonfiction.



Fleming, C., Rohman, E. (2016). Giant squid. New York, New York: Roaring Brook Press.

Sill, C. (2015). Polar regions. Atlanta, Georgia: Peachtree Press.