Drag queen reads a book to children (Photo: Jennifer Ricard)

A Deeper Look: Censorship beyond Books

July 8, 2021

Databases and digital resources Almost every library has at least one database subscription that offers curated content published by reputable sources. The target audience and content vary widely among databases, and because databases are digital resources, users can access the content in various settings—in the library, at school, and at home. These factors can cause … Continue reading A Deeper Look: Censorship beyond Books


Illustration of dozens of diverse faces (Illustration: Franzi Draws)

Ask, Listen, Empower

June 1, 2021

Put another way, it is not enough to simply be not racist; we must work to be antiracist. Psychologist Beverly Daniel Tatum, president emerita of Spelman College, uses the analogy of a moving walkway. The history and structures of racism are the walkway. It is not enough to simply stop walking, because you’re still moving … Continue reading Ask, Listen, Empower




Watercolor image of a Black woman's face surrounded by swirls of color (Photo illustration: ©Victor Tongdee/Adobe Stock)

The Weight We Carry

November 2, 2020

Although stereotypes about cold, harsh, robotic librarians persist, those of us who work with the public must display emotional intelligence for our patrons’ sakes—and our own. Emotional labor Vicarious traumatization (VT) occurs when we work with patrons whose traumatic stories transfer onto us. We may not realize that transference has happened. Subtly and gradually, it … Continue reading The Weight We Carry




Knowledge IQ

November 1, 2019

Fundamental tenets of knowledge management can help your library gradually move from humbug thoughts such as, “That’s just how we’ve always done it!” to more affirming ones like, “There are new, improved ways we can try with an open mind.” This transformation depends largely on creating an organizational culture that is open to sharing knowledge, … Continue reading Knowledge IQ


Adventures of Huckleberry Finn on a bookshelf in a target

Up to the Challenge

September 3, 2019

Build your foundation The first step is to be an excellent educator. Your lessons should foster “opportunities for learners to demonstrate personal curiosity and creation of knowledge” and “support the diverse developmental, cultural, social, and linguistic needs” represented in your community, according to the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) National School Library Standards for … Continue reading Up to the Challenge



Photo: © Monkey Business/Adobe Stock

Get the Word Out

May 1, 2019

Know your audience Who do you want to know about summer learning? Parents and caregivers? Teachers? The teens themselves? Other organizations serving youth in the community? While the answer is undoubtedly all four, think about your library and community. How does word get around about your events? Maybe it’s from parents reading your quarterly newsletter … Continue reading Get the Word Out


Dewey Decibel Episode 32, Get a Job

Dewey Decibel Podcast: Get a Job!

November 27, 2018

First, ALA Editions acquisitions editor and Dewey Decibel contributor Jamie Santoro speaks with Caitlin Williams, author of Be Opportunity-Minded: Start Growing Your Career Now (ALA Editions, 2019), about tips for those on the job hunt and job market trends. Next, Dewey Decibel host and American Libraries associate editor Phil Morehart talks with David Connolly, recruitment … Continue reading Dewey Decibel Podcast: Get a Job!