Staff members from libraries across the state were in Lincoln last week for the 2015 Nebraska Library Association/Nebraska School Library Association Conference at the Cornhusker Marriott Hotel. The three-day event was filled with informational presentations designed to make your library even better.

The first session I attended was Coding Corner: How to teach coding to kids at your library. Marvel Maring of Omaha Public Library explained how the Abrahams Branch of OPL launched a coding program for kids with the help of local computer educators. Their classes were offered through four- and two-week sessions and an after-school club. The response was very positive, she said.

My second sessions was Welcome the World to Your Library: Creating a Multilingual Library Introduction Video. Presenters were Kathryn Kelley and Katie Murtha, both of Lincoln City Libraries. Through a grant, the women developed a library-use video in English, Arabic, Karen, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese. The purpose of the video was to help promote literacy services for adult English language learners. They outlined the many challenges they faced in producing the video in a variety of languages.

The third session I attended was But I HATE to Read! presented by Terri Grief, immediate past president of the American Association of School Librarians. To say Ms. Grief is passionate about books and reading would be a huge understatement. She presented a variety of books that she has found leave reluctant readers asking for more.

Ms. Grief was also the presenter of my final session, Great Reads for Teens. Ms. Grief reads 100 books a year, and she gave a review of all 100 books during the session! Her rapid-fire book reports left everyone in the room excited to get their hands on some of the highly recommended reads.

Conference is always an exciting time to renew acquaintances with staff members from other libraries, see the latest offerings from vendors from across the country and attend sessions on innovative ways to make libraries better. It is certainly time well spent.


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