Part 2 of 2
This two-part blog post focuses on a few frequently asked questions, or "Aha!" moments that have stemmed from conversations in the field regarding youth services and the Wisconsin Public Library Annual Report. Read Part 1
Enlightenment Concept #3: Literacy Offerings as Umbrella Events
|A Literacy Offering can be thought of as an umbrella event |
Libraries create many experiences for patrons such as programs, displays, book lists, and drop-in activities. Not everything that libraries offer is counted on the Annual Report, but that does not mean libraries should not offer them. In fact, most library directors would balk if they had to count every single effort.
Literacy offerings are a specific kind of short-term event that many libraries offer to encourage reading and/or the development of literacy skills. The most common kind is a summer reading program, often targeting a specific audience such as children (ages 0-11). A literacy offering can be thought of as an umbrella--an overarching, highly visible structure under which other library events and activities are scheduled. Looking at this photo, imagine that the rainbow umbrella represents a "Color Your Summer with Books" literacy offering for children. The umbrella stands out from other things on the beach, much like a literacy offering stands out from a library's regular programs and services. Underneath the rainbow umbrella, the red cooler represents all of the programs that were offered during Color Your Summer with Books. The yellow flippers represent all of the drop-in activities that were offered. There are some other things, like displays, contests, and readers advisory that took place, but those items are not counted on the Annual Report.
In this example, in order to be involved in Color Your Summer with Books, a child must register, or sign up, any time during the eight week event. On the annual report, the library would report that it hosted one Summer Literacy Offering for Children, and the number of individuals involved would be the count of the unique persons signed up for Color Your Summer with Books.
As for all of the programs offered as part of Color Your Summer with Books, those get counted under Programs and Program Attendance. Programs always get counted under Programs.
As for all of the drop-in activities offered, those get counted under Drop-in Activities and Participation. Drop-ins always get counted under Drop-ins.
But wait! What if you count involvement differently at your library? For example, what if involvement for an individual in your summer literacy offering means completing a reading record? In this case, your library would be using participation in a drop-in activity (a reading record) as a measurement for two report elements--drop-in activities and literacy offerings. In this specific example, a library might have 25 reading record participants in a drop-in activity AND a 25 person count for individuals involved in the literacy offering. While it seems counterintuitive to count something twice, in this case it works because this is how your library determines what literacy offering involvement means. Refer to Enlightenment Concept #1: Ways to Count in Part 1 of this post and remember that the Annual Report does not dictate how you count, only that you count consistently.
Enlightenment Concept #4: Email Communication
|Direct burning annual report questions |
to LibraryReport@dpi.wi.gov (Pixabay)
|Make sure you are included on|
the YS-List for youth services updates
In a nutshell, please be in touch with us, and help us to be in touch with you.
Want to learn more or test your knowledge? Here are three resources that are intended to support your data collection throughout the year, as well as during reporting season.
Online Learning Module: Wisconsin Public Library Annual Report: Youth Services
(Note: includes quizzes and suggestions of "Ways to Count")
Webinar Recording: Just to Clarify: Youth Services and the Annual Report
Wishing you a calm and consistent reporting season!
Written by Tessa Michaelson Schmidt, Public Library Development Team