Category Archives: Youth Services

Free Virtual Event: Middle Grade Magic

Join School Library Journal for their Middle Grade Magic virtual summit, a day-long celebration and exploration of one of the burgeoning and most important areas of publishing for young readers: literature for children ages eight through 12 and beyond! This free, completely virtual conference takes place on Wednesday, April 8, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. MDT. CE credits will be available.

Learn more and register.

Attendees will get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at some of the most anticipated new titles for kids and tweens and have the opportunity to check out the virtual exhibit hall, chat directly with authors, download educational resources, and receive prizes and giveaways.

Can’t make the live date? No problem! The entire environment will be archived and available for up to three months.

Keep the Kids Learning with Tumblebooks and More

So many vendors are stepping up to help everyone affected by closures, especially for children who are missing out on school. We’ve put together a guide, COVID-19: Free Resources for Remote Access, that has e-books, audiobooks, activities, lesson plans, storytimes, podcasts, and virtual tours of museums and more. There are some “free for now” resources from vendors such as Tumblebooks and Scholastic who have opened up access during this crisis, as well as others that are free at all times.

This collection of free, limited-time-only resources to use at home is great for remote learning and keeping the kids happy and learning (and you sane) during the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ll keep adding to it as more resources come in.

Also know that the Wyoming State Library provides a wealth of resources at — available to every resident of the state for free with a card from any Wyoming public or community college library. Don’t have a card? Contact your local library for help. While most have closed their doors, they’re still available to serve you online or by phone.

Wyoming Reads is Monitoring Situation

Statement from John Jorgensen of Wyoming Reads:

“While it is our sincere hope that conditions improve over the coming weeks thanks to the diligent work of our community to protect ourselves and those around us, we are monitoring the situation closely. The health and safety of our first graders is our primary concern; and as we approach May 12, we will make whatever decisions necessary in order to provide these students with their selected books as safely as possible. Our thoughts go out to everyone during these trying times, and we hope to see everyone — healthy and smiling — on Wyoming Reads Day.”

Sanitizing Your Children’s Area

Do you have a routine for keeping your children’s area clean? Danielle Margarida, Youth Services Coordinator at the Rhode Island Office of Library and Information Services, has compiled this list of resources for cleaning and sanitizing toys, manipulatives, spaces, etc.

Guidance on non-toxic cleaning products:

Additional Resource for Kids & Families:

Bring Jason Reynolds to Your Community

The Library of Congress’ partner, Every Child a Reader, is currently accepting proposal submissions from libraries, schools, community centers, and organizations interested in hosting an event with Jason Reynolds, the 7th National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature.

Submit your program proposal by March 20.

Reynolds will travel to rural/small underserved communities across the country during his two-year term to have meaningful discussions with young people. Through his platform, “GRAB THE MIC: Tell Your Story,” he will connect with, listen to, and empower students to share their stories and start their journey as storytellers.

Organizations are encouraged to put together proposals that support and align with Reynolds’ platform and the mission of the program. 

Follow the links to learn more about the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature program and about Reynolds’ tenure as Ambassador.

Archived Webinar: Afterschool Library Partnerships

WYAA Presentation to Wyoming Libraries
January 2020; 45 minutes
New in our webinar archive under the “Other Webinars” header is a video with Wyoming Afterschool Alliance (WYAA) Director Michelle Sullivan. In this video, Michelle shares shares opportunities for library partnerships. Recently, WYAA partnered with Fremont County Library to put together a TMC Mobile Makerspace, benefiting the entire community.

Voting Open for Book Awards

The 2020 Wyoming Book Award season is in full swing. Annually, the Wyoming Library Association and the Wyoming State Literacy Association jointly sponsor three awards: the Buckaroo Book Award for children in grades K-3, the Indian Paintbrush Book Award for children in grades 4-6, and the Soaring Eagle Book Award for youth in grades 7-12.

The purpose of these awards is to provide an opportunity for the youth of Wyoming to read and select favorite books and to honor the authors of those books.

  • Voting for the 2020 Wyoming Book Awards opens October 1, 2019 and closes April 1, 2020.
  • Nominations for the 2021 Wyoming Book Awards open October 1, 2019 and close March 1, 2020.

There are some great reads on the list this year — check out the list of nominees! For information, packets, labels, and history of the awards, visit Wyoming Book Awards.

Questions? Contact Chris Van Burgh at or (307) 777-3642.

We Need Diverse Books

From the Idaho Commission for Libraries December 2019 Scoop newsletter

Imagine a world in which all children can see themselves in the pages of a book. (WNDB)

We Need Diverse Books is a non-profit and a grassroots organization of children’s book lovers that advocates essential changes in the publishing industry; whose mission is “putting more books featuring diverse characters into the hands of all children.”

Their website offers loads of great resources to help you in your quest to bring diverse books to your library. Check out some of the resources they offer:

  • Where to find diverse books – a collection of websites/sources
  • Summer Reading series – reading recommendations based on popular children’s books
  • Booktalking kit – sheds light on lesser-known books about diverse characters and booktalk info

Also, run a list of your picture books through their Diverse BookFinder Collection Analysis Tool to help you diversify your collection. This free, online resource allows you to upload a single file and get a snapshot of  which racial/cultural groups are represented in your collection, and how they’re represented. This tool is funded by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Story Time from Space!

From the Idaho Commission for Libraries November 2019 Scoop newsletter

Imagine astronauts on the International Space Station reading stories to and conducting science experiments for the children of Earth as the world rotates below. Imagine no more…it’s Story Time from Space! Story Time from Space is a project of the Global Space Education Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit education foundation. This month’s story time is A Moon of My Own by Jennifer Rustgi, illustrated by Ashley White, and read by U.S. astronaut Dr. Serena Auñón-Chencellor from the airlock of the space station. You can also check out their directory to view recordings of previous story times from space.

Traveling Trunks from the Smithsonian

Reposted from Smithsonian Libraries

Traveling Trunks is a new resource-lending program of the Smithsonian Libraries. These multimedia library kits are packed full of resources from across the Smithsonian Institution that deliver immersive experiences. Through touch, tech, sound, and sight, Traveling Trunks creates a screen-free sensory-rich environment.

Through the current four themes students can listen to authentic songs and stories by the Latinx community, solve intricate mystery games based on US presidential history or ancient texts on zoology and herbology, and hear under-told stories of American women’s history. The program is a free resource for young learners and their educators, and Traveling Trunks can be sent to libraries, schools, community centers, and other learning sites for a month-long lending period, with the option to renew. All costs, including shipping costs are covered; access to a FedEx office is required.  ​​

Interested in learning more about how Traveling Trunks could come to your space? Pre-register to stay in the know. and to submit your questions and comments.

Upcoming Traveling Trunks


Coming January 2020
Cost: Free
Ages: All


Coming Spring 2020
Cost: Free
Ages: Middle School and up

Coming Spring 2020
Cost: Free
Ages: All


Coming Spring 2020
Cost: Free
Ages: Middle School and up