Tag Archives: YALSA

Readers Advisory Resources

[Updated November 2017]

Readers Advisory is a service libraries offer that includes helping readers locate materials through recommendations, book lists, displays, social networking, and other means. Basically, readers advisory means recommending books to patrons.

All libraries provide readers advisory services whether they realize it or not. It can be done “informally” (by verbally recommending books to patrons) and “formally” (by using displays and handouts).

If your library has recommended items to patrons either “formally” or “informally,” your library has done readers advisory. (Hint: remember this when filling out your library’s annual report)

If you would like to expand your library’s readers advisory services or if you would like to learn more about this service, here are some great resources:

Resources specifically for teens/ young adults:

2017 Teens’ Top Ten Nominees Have Been Announced

In case you haven’t already heard: YALSA has announced the Teens’ Top Ten nominees for 2017!

The list is comprised of the 26 books, along with summaries, that were nominated and chosen by teens as the favorites from 2016. Now is a great time to encourage the teens at your library to read the nominees, so they will be ready to vote for their favorites between August 15 and Teen Read Week (October 8-14, 2017).  Winners will be announced the week of October 15.

The nominee list and other information, including a guide on how to promote the books, a downloadable toolkit, and answers to frequently asked questions, can be found here: http://www.ala.org/yalsa/teenstopten

“YALSA’s Teens’ Top Ten” Nominees for 2016

Teens' Top TenYALSA has posted the list of the 2016 Teens’ Top Ten Nominees. The 26 books on this list are the favorites from 2015, nominated and chosen by teens. Voting takes place between August 15 and Teen Read Week (October 9-15, 2016), with the 10 winners being announced the week after Teen Read Week.

Now is a great time to have your teens start reading the nominees so they are ready to vote when the time comes. This will also get teens reading during the summer, which is the ultimate goal. Continue reading

Teen Tech Week 2015

“Libraries are for making…” is the theme of Teen Tech Week this year. Teen Tech Week will officially be held March 8-14, but there’s no reason you can’t adjust the timeline if different dates work better for you. After all, the purpose of Teen Tech Week is to “make the time to showcase all of the great digital resources and services that are available to help teens succeed in school and prepare for college and 21st century careers,” and that can happen at any time!

Continue reading

Teen Book Finder App from YALSA

Logo for YALSA's Teen Book Finder appEver have trouble finding or recommending good young adult fiction? Pined for a tool that could guide your tech-focused teens to great reads and help them share the experience through Twitter and Facebook? Look no further than the Teen Book Finder app from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

The app combines several useful functions. It recommends three featured titles each day; provides the ability to search for books by author, title, award, genre, and more; uses the OCLC WorldCat Search API to locate nearby libraries that own a desired book; lets users mark their favorites and create booklists; and allows for easy social sharing through Twitter and Facebook integration.

As you may have guessed, this app won’t just be useful for your current (and potential) patrons. Library staff will be able to make use of it for collection development purposes, as it’s an easy way to find new, topical, and/or award-winning YA titles.

The app is free and is now available on both Android and iOS platforms (download links below).

Google Play

iTunes App Store


Apps in the Library

Many kids these days are more likely to be found playing games on a tablet or phone than reading a book, but there are ways to encourage literacy through electronics. Check out these free apps for ideas:

1000 books app1000 Books Before Kindergarten is an organization designed “to promote reading to newborns, infants, and toddlers” and “to encourage parent and child bonding through reading.” Whether you’re reading in print or online, use the free app to track your progress to 1000 books!

bedtimemath appBedtime Math’s mission is “to help kids learn to love math so they can become capable adults.” If you already read a bedtime story to your kids, why not encourage their numerical literacy as well by adding a bedtime math question? Use the free app to access math questions for children of various ages.

For teens, use yalsa appYALSA’s Teen Book Finder to access  YALSA’s award winning books and lists for the last three years. There is also an App of the Week feature on the YALSA blog. Check out the archive for more app ideas that might be useful for the teens in your library.

For more ideas, check out Emily Lloyd’s presentation entitled “iPads and Early Literacy: 50 Fantastic Free Apps for Pre-Readers.” All apps were free as of January.

If you weren’t able to attend the Spring Workshops here in Bismarck, be sure to check out the list of apps Charity Nix highlighted in her presentation “iPads in Education.”

How do you use apps in your library? What’s your favorite library/reading app? Share your suggestions in the comments!

STEM for Teens

Spark Book This year’s summer reading theme is science, and YALSA (the Young Adult Library Services Association) has a convenient resource to help you plan science-related teen programming! The YALSA STEM task force has prepared a STEM programming toolkit to help you “Spark a Reaction” with your teens. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math, so it’s a perfect fit for this year’s summer reading theme.

The toolkit walks you through the entire process, including information on  getting started, building partnerships, marketing and promotion, and best practices, as well as providing sample programs, ideas, and additional resources. Since teens are a difficult demographic to target, and you may not have a staff member dedicated to teen programming, they also include suggestions for stealth programming.

If you’re looking for book suggestions, YALSA offers a STEM Reads for Teens brochure, and CSLP (the Collaborative Summer Library Program) has a “Spark a Reaction” bibliography available.

What kind of STEM programming are you preparing for teens this summer? Share your ideas in the comments!

Teen Tech Week

Teen Tech Week is March 9-15. Start planning your event with the help of YALSA’s resources.

Check out the following useful toolkits:

There are also Book and Media Lists as well as other free web tools. To download the graphics, you do need to set up an account, but you don’t need to be a YALSA member.

If you sign up for an account, you will also be able to register to attend the free webinars that start next week:

  • Tuesday, January 21 – Leveraging Partnerships
  • Wednesday, February 5 – Maker Activities
  • Tuesday, March 11 – Measuring Program Outcomes and Impact

Even if you can’t attend, you can sign up to receive a recording of the webinar.

Since the summer reading theme this year is science, Teen Tech Week is a great opportunity to encourage teens to participate in the library all year long!

Are you hosting Teen Tech Week events at your library? Share your ideas in the comments!

Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers

YALSAWe all know kids who, for whatever reason, are less than enthusiastic about reading. Fortunately, YALSA has a committee that picks fiction and non-fiction books that will appeal to reluctant readers between the ages of 12-18, regardless of why they don’t like to read. The 2013 Quick Picks list includes 65 titles and 3 series; there is also a top 10 list. For more ideas, view the past lists. There’s also a compilation of books in series that have been featured in the past.

You can also suggest books for consideration if you have titles that have been popular in your library. You can view the selection criteria to see how the books are evaluated.

How popular are the selected titles with your reluctant readers? Do you have recommendations that have been successful in your library? Share them in the comments!