Well, not much, really.
But we’ve been working with a series of new tools to bring you better training. We’ve set up a green screen, designed a mostly-soundproof-room, created new training outlines, and are starting to record new training materials for all products. We think you’ll like what you see. We hope to have the first batch of new videos and materials available to you by early October.
In the meantime, we’re working hard to put the finishing touches on our new training room. Our “Boss of Video”, Vesone, was testing the new green screen wall when our User Interface designer, Janice, just happened to walk into the shot and look around the room.
With a little bit of editing magic, Janice walking in and looking around the room suddenly became a scene from When Animals Attack…check it out!
Join us on Wednesday, September 26 at 1:00 PM EST for: Empowering Young Readers. This webinar features librarian and blogger Cathy Potter discussing ways to help children make their own reading choices. It will also feature a brief demonstration of our Peek-A-Book product.
Register here: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/272519562
About Cathy Potter:
Cathy Potter is K-5 school librarian in Falmouth, Maine and is the co-founder of the popular blog http://www.nonfictiondetectives.com. Cathy holds a Master of Literacy Education degree from the University of Southern Maine and a Master of School Library Science degree from Clarion University. Cathy reviews apps for School Library Journal and serves on the Southern Maine Library District’s Board of Directors. She served as a nonfiction picture book judge for the 2011 CYBILS awards and is currently a member of the Chickadee Award committee in Maine.
Peek-A-Book offers dazzling children’s picture book trailers that are available through a web-based previewing system. Peek-A-Book helps children make their own reading choices then put those items on hold through your library catalog or download the e-book to their mobile device. Learn more on our website.
In early spring of this year, Sarah Sogigian, Youth Services Advisor for the Massachusetts Library System sponsored “Evanced Week” and asked her libraries to share their hints and tips for making the most of Summer Reader. She received quite a bit of feedback and the event was a great success. Here’s what Sarah told us about the week:
In support of our Evanced trainings with our peer trainers, I created an online program to run the length of the week, April 23-27, 2012.
The program, which can be viewed at http://iread.evanced.info/masslibrarysystem/sr/homepage.asp, asked librarians working with all ages to register for the program and share a summer program tip.
They were entered into a random raffle to win prizes. We gave away a prize a day using the random drawing feature.
This is not the first time we have used our Evanced instance to lead a statewide online program. We have found that not only does it give our members the opportunity to share information with each other, but librarians who are skeptical of using the program, have the opportunity to experience Summer Reader from the patron view. It is our hope that after this experience, they will be willing to try it out in their library. It seems to be working! We hear of more and more libraries using Summer Reader exclusively for logging books (no paper logs), and we had 18 libraries sign up to use Summer Reader in 2011 and 2 in 2012. We’ve also seen an increase of patron use statistics of the program in 2011 and expect that number to be higher in 2012.
Prizes are often books and incentives we receive from publishers and conferences, as well as incentives provided by Evanced Solutions and Upstart. We had 23 librarians register and share 22 program tips. Attached is a list of them.
We are already planning another online summer program for our members; last year we had over 400 librarian sign up to win weekly prizes from MLS.
We credit the major increase in signups to the fact that during the summer, all we ask them to do is register. They aren’t required to log anything, but we are debating changing that this year.
Here at Evanced, we enjoyed reading the unique ideas that came from Evanced Week! Some of our favorites include:
“Last year we did our first Adult Summer Reading Program, because “summer reading isn’t just for kids anymore!” Our adult patrons enjoyed it so much we’re doing it again this year. It was very low cost – we used the Random Drawing feature for weekly prizes, and the grand prize was an assortment of $25 gift certificates donated by local restaurants. Can’t wait to do it again!”
“For the last 5 years or so, we’ve been giving away “gently” used books (donated from the public) to our summer reading registrants each week. Instead of incentive prizes, we give the books and allow the kids to “swap” them after they’ve read them!”
“The ReadsinMA [Summer Reader] program has increased our participation!! No more lost logs and no more worrying about not receiving completed logs for stats at the end of the summer. Stats are a breeze and if you like to do raffles you just set the parameters and the computer does the rest! We are working with our local pediatric offices for our community component this year. Readers will read and books will be put into the waiting areas in local pediatric offices.”
“To kick off our registration, we host an ice cream party for those who come in this first day to pick up their paperwork/logbook. Registration is only online, but we encourage all the kids to come in for their paperwork, then color and sign a star to be displayed.”
We loved the ideas that came from this event and we’ll continue to share them periodically in future blog posts!