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The Public Library Association’s biennial conference was held this March in Indianapolis, and was a huge success. Some of the highlights:
--The ProQuest Genealogy Breakfast was a packed house once again, and featured several speakers, including our own Bill Forsyth.
-- According to the Examiner.com, this year more than 265 people attended the conference virtually; the humor writer David Sedaris brought the conference to a hilarious close; many sessions and events discussing the changing role of public libraries; and demand is high at most public libraries as they expand their traditional roles and offer new services.
-- The IMLS (U.S. Institute of Museum and Libraries Services) data released during the conference showed that public libraries circulated more than 2.4 billion items in 2011 – the highest in ten years.
--Publishers Weekly recapped PLA 2014 with a list of seven trends in Children’s and Teen Library Services:
1. Common Core – Impacts the circulation and readership of nonfiction particularly
2. Library Spaces – Digital media, makerspaces, YOUmedia labs, 3D printers
3. Connected Learning – Interest-based and peer-to-peer learning for teens is making a difference in planning events
4. Technology Divide – Touchscreen technology and apps are not available in every home
5. Technology and the Younger Child – What are the best practices for learning and teaching?
6. Early Literacy – Kindergarten preparedness is a hot topic
7. Advocacy – Spreading the word about library value is a challenge, with fewer resources
The next PLA will take place in Denver, April 5-9, 2016. Who knows what kind of new ideas and technologies will be developed by then!