The first thing I did at ALA was to run to the Scholastic Booth to see what they'd be handing out for Harry Potter this time. hmmm. nothing. However, they did promise me they'd be serving Butter Beer in the afternoon. (Not a big draw for this non-beer drinking person, however.) They did give me copies of Mike Thaler's Teacher from the Black Lagoon series -- signing to be held that afternoon. I can give these to the grandchildren and use the extra copies for prizes for programs at the library.
And so I visited a few other publisher's booths before checking out the Albert Whitman booth. Not only do they have some bound copies of my new book, The Halloween Book of Facts and Fun, but they're featuring it on the backdrop with a large poster. Yea!
And then on to the program -- Spreading the word with a Children's Poetry Jam. Amazing to hear Jack Prelutsky, Betsy Franco, Marlyn Singer and others read their own poems. I'm sure it was planned before hand, but they jumped from poems about food to animals, from longer poems to "who can show off the shortest poem." fun. Then they talked about using poetry with children to encourage them to appreciate playing with words.
I missed getting cake at Baker and Taylor's celebration of their new children's imprint, Paw Prints. (Isn't that cute?) But they promise more on Sunday.
Did I see Judy Blume? yes. Did I get a book signed by her? no. As I approached the end of the line, a booth staff member stood there telling everyone that the line was closed.
Then on to Trit Trot to Washington, the whys and hows of using rhymes, songs, books, and games in early literacy programs for babies and toddlers. The handouts included the songs they were using. Since there were leftovers after the program, I picked up some for every library branch. Some of the speakers go out to public health Clinics and other places where mothers gather, to reach those moms who have no idea that libraries would have books and programs that could help them cope with motherhood. Learned more uses of music in storytime and discovered that the Two Little Dickybirds fingerplay can also be used with LOUD and soft & fast and sloooooow. neat! Also scarfed up Betsy Diamant-Cohen's Mother Goose on the Loose CD that is just the songs. (the CDs I already have include the instructions for using the songs, but does not have just plain songs that I could actually use in my baby storytime.)
After the program, a group of us gathered around the speakers and demonstrated fingerplays and action games we have found sucessful in our own programs. Can't wait to use the popcorn one.
After more book signings and booth browsing, I had a wonderful idea. The Scholastic bash was to be at another hotel. Why not simply take the free bus now to that hotel, have dinner, and then I'll already be there for the concert.
The evening concert this year (to support scholarships to library school) was actually two performances. The first one by Mark Russel and the second one was the Capitol Steps. A great evening of political satire, perfect for this ALA in Wasington, DC. I'll share the CDs I bought of the Capitol Steps with everyone in my library branch. (after my husband gets them first to put on his I-Pod.)
Got back to the room before midnight -- yawn.