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Past program information & handouts


Play Date: The Social Library

December 19, 2008

Come and play with some of the hot social networking tools, including Twitter, FriendFeed and Delicious. Tasha Saecker, director of the Menasha Public Library, will speak about the impact of having your library involved in the new social web.


Slides (ppt)


Brain Snack: Selection Tips & Tricks for Adult Collections

December 12, 2008

Collection development is a huge part of working in a library. Selecting new materials was one of my favorite parts of being a librarian. But, how do you choose which materials to add to your collection? How do you keep up with all the catalogs, journals, and web sites? Join your colleagues and share your favorite collection development sites, tips, and tricks – as well as those that didn’t work out so well.


Slides (ppt)


Play Date: The Wonderful World of Widgets

November 21 , 2008

Learn how to liven up your web sites and blogs with portable chunks of code called widgets. There are loads of sizes and types, and they are incredibly easy to use. Just copy and paste! Joy Schwarz and Beth Carpenter will show you how to find them and why you should consider using them.


Slides (from Project Play's blog)


SLP Workshop

November 20 , 2008

Displays created by Carissa Christener, Alicia Ashman Branch Library (Madison)

Carissa's SLP Decorating Handout (pdf)

Adventures in Art, Anne Horjus
Many of us know Anne Horjus as a children’s librarian at the Baraboo Public Library. Anne is also a singer, published illustrator and set designer. In this session Anne will introduce library program ideas that include art projects, artistic principles and practical (and fun!) suggestions that will add pizzazz to next summer’s program. Be prepared to return to your libraries artistically energized and ready to add creative touches to next summer’s schedule.

Slides (ppt)

Bibliography (Word)

Anne's Drawings: Apple, Bathtub, Farm, Farm Animals, Farm Roof, Lizard, Mouse, Piggies, Turtle (all .gif files)

Creative Beginnings, Shawn Brommer
Focusing on the creative process, Shawn Brommer will present practical program ideas for toddlers and preschoolers that explore art and creativity. Participants will leave this program with a packet of story time outlines and suggestions for ways to extend themes of art and creativity in all programs for young children.

Shawn's SLP preschool programs (pdf)

Be Creative @ Your Library with Patti Sinclair
Former children's librarian and the editor who brings creative energy to the Consortium's SLP manual, Patti Sinclair will introduce workshop participants to craft and program ideas that will encourage kids to take time next summer to create and read at your library!

Contact Jean for copies of Patti's handouts


Play Date: Tech Gadgets: Cool Toys... and More!

October 24 , 2008

Come learn about some cool gadgets (including iPods, Kindles, and more!) and why they are important. Not just cool tech toys, gadgets are indicators of trends that are shaping our media and technology world. Stef Morrill will share information about various gadgets and their impact.

Slides (ppt)



Brain Snack: It's Social, and can be safe too: helping youth stay safe online

October 17 , 2008

Social software sites such as MySpace and Facebook form the some of the most important social connections for many people of all ages, but especially for youth. South Central Library System consultants Shawn Brommer and Cheryl Becker will give an introduction to social software and its benefits for libraries, as well as discuss ways libraries can provide safety education.

Handout (Word format)

Slides (ppt format)



Your Office Organized -- Fiction or Nonfiction?

October 10 , 2008

Is your desktop missing in action? Is your stack of unfiled papers growing exponentially? Has your stuff taken control of your life? Former professional organizer Penny Johnson, now the teen specialist at Baraboo Public Library, can show you how to take charge of your workspace once and for all. Discover your personal organizing style. (Are you an “innie” or an “outie”?) Learn the PEACE process for de-cluttering your office and keeping it that way. Conquer the paper in your life. There’s no mystery, fantasy, or science fiction involved! You can get organized!

Handouts (PDF format)

Planners 101 (PDF format)


Play Date: Password Management Made Easy

September 26, 2008

Which email address did I register with at Google Docs? Did I use the same login and password for pbwiki? I can’t remember my username for YouTube! Arg! If this sounds like you, sign up for this Play Date. Learn how to solve all of your online account woes with Passpack, a secure, online password manager you can access from any web computer. If you use a different password manager you’d like to recommend, be ready to share the details with other Project Players. See you on OPAL!

Slides (ppt format, 3.09 MB)



Play Date: More on LibraryThing

August 22, 2008

You learned about the basics of LibraryThing in Project Play. Join the Pandalibrarian (aka Jean Anderson) to learn more about LibraryThing, including editing your tags, writing reviews, receiving advance copies of books, LibraryThing Local, and much more!

Slides (ppt format, 2.29 MB)

Recording (Note: during the web portion of the program, not all the screens are visible as you need to be logged into LibraryThing for them to appear)


Play Date: More on Google Apps

July 25 , 2008

You learned about the basics of Google Docs in Project Play. Join Stef Morrill to learn about more Google services, including Google Calendar and iGoogle, and get some helpful tips and tricks for Google Docs.

Slides (ppt format, MB)



More with Firefox

June 20 , 2008

Customize your Firefox browser!  We’ll explore some of the more popular Firefox extensions, show you how to add them to your browser, and how they can help make your time online more efficient.

Slides (ppt format, 1.47 MB)



Genealogy: It's all Online! Or is it?

June 12 , 2008

This program will address this question and demonstrate how using online resources along with traditional resources can make family research more complete. The top genealogical sites, such as and will be covered as well as many other sites that are full of databases and digital collections, sought by genealogists. This program takes a methodical look at online resources to make it easier to assist researchers at all types of research institutions. Presenter: Lori Bessler, Wisconsin Historical Society

Online Resources Handout (PDF format, 89 KB)

Ancestry Handout (PDF format, 95 KB)


Requesting Obituaries, Newspaper Articles, and Microfilm via ILL

May 22, 2008

Requesting obituaries, newspaper articles and microfilm through Interlibrary loan can be confusing, to say the least! Join Pam and Beth, Interlibrary Loan librarians from Madison Public Library to learn the best way to request these types of materials. Bring your questions!

Slides (PowerPoint, 511 KB size)



Database Demo: ReferenceUSA

May 16 , 2008

Join Tana for an eye-opening tour of ReferenceUSa and learn about the strengths of this powerful database.


Charts & Graphs in Excel

April 25, 2008

You collect all these statistics: library visits, program attendance, reference questions, etc. among others. Some of these statistics are even reported in your state Annual Report. But, what do you DO with them? What good are they? You can use them to help tell "your library story" visually, by turning them into colorful charts and graphs with Microsoft Excel. Come learn the basics of using charts & graphs in Excel.


CCBC Presents: Great New titles for Older Children & Teens

April 4, 2008

Find out about some of the outstanding books published for older children and teens in 2007. This convenient new workshop will feature librarians from the Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) talking about books for older children (Grade 4 and up) and teenagers that are included in CCBC Choices 2008, the CCBC's most recent best-of-the-year list. The librarians will also discuss 2008 American Library Association award books for older children.


CCBC Presents: Great New titles for Younger Children

March 14, 2008

Find out about some of the outstanding books published for younger children in 2007. This convenient new workshop will feature librarians from the Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) talking about books for children from birth through Grade 3 that are included in CCBC Choices 2008, the CCBC's most recent best-of-the-year list. The librarians will also discuss 2008 American Library Association award books for younger children.


Brain Snack: A Micro-discussion of Microtrends by Mark Penn

February 15 , 2008

Stef Morrill, Associate Director of SCLS, will discuss a sampling of the trends covered in Mark Penn's book Microtrends: the Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes and how they could impact library services in the future.


Filing your State Annual Report

January 25, 2008

This session on filing the Wisconsin Public Library Annual Report online is designed especially for new directors or others completing the report for the first (or nearly first) time, or for anyone who has recently experienced questions or problems with the report. However, anyone who is working on the state annual report should find it a helpful review and is welcome to attend.


Database Demo: LearningExpress Library

January 18, 2008

Lisa will walk participants through the many features and resources included in LearningExpress Library. In addition to demonstrating the database and sharing her experience from Madison Public Library, Lisa will talk about how and where the library promoted LearningExpress Library throughout the community.


Introduction to Genealogy

November 9 , 2007

This session is for those who have little knowledge of genealogy and want to know the basics to help patrons when general questions arise. Nathan Rybarczyk, Baraboo Public Library, will introduce elementary genealogy research and family narratives. The use of various forms and records will be discussed as well as some helpful print and online resources to aid in research and compiling of information.


Working with Teens and Millenials

September 14, 2007

A recent PLA study shows that more teens than ever are visiting public libraries, using library resources and attending teen programs. This is the largest teen population in U.S. history and their needs and expectations are different and unique than generations that came before them. Join us in this one-hour brain snack to learn more about the characteristics of this generation, discover what recent teen brain development reveals about their behavior and communication styles and to hear about ways that libraries from across the country are addressing the needs of contemporary teens.


Supervisory Skills for Managers & Leaders

September 12 , 2007

Supervision and management is balancing the demands of your leaders versus the needs of other supervisors and staff. You coordinate, plan, maintain and communicate while being tugged by dozens of conflicting voices, from frontline staff to top administrators, elected and appointed officials. Satisfaction is derived from helping so many different people achive their goals and helping the library move forward. This interactive workshop will help you expand your skills as a supervisor and will address ways to balance the many roles and expectations of the position.


Ready for 2.0: Blogs, Wikis and Other Cool Tools You Can Use at Your Library

August 16, 2007

You've heard about Web 2.0, but Gregg will help unravel some of the mystery. Find answers to questions like: "What is a blog?" "What is a Wiki?" "What is a mashup?" You'll also learn about "searchie tool thingies," video sources like YouTube, podcasts and audio, social networking, IM, and other cool tools. This session is a sneak peak at some Project Play concepts and content, so if you're planning to participate in that project, this is a good primer (registration for Project Play opens on August 15, 2007).


Marketing & Demographic Information for Businesses

August 2 , 2007

Through program attendance, librarians will learn more about marketing and demographic information that is of specific interest to businesses. Attendees will learn more about finding general industry information from databases like EBSCO's Business Source Elite, ProQuest, ReferenceUSA, and American Factfinder. Participants will also explore sources for pinpointing consumer information, including Market Share Reporter, SRDS's Lifestyle Market Analyst, Sourcebook of Zip Code Demographics, and Rand McNally's Commercial Marketing Atlas. The presenters will help answer questions about sources for looking up industry codes and where you can find information about local competition. Take the first step toward becoming a more knowledgeable and valuable resource for your local business community.


Developing a Library Marketing Plan, Part 2: Implementing the Plan

July 20, 2007

Join Mark Ibach, Marketing & Public Relations Coordinator for South Central Library System to learn about implementing the marketing plan and keeping it relevant.


Gadget Training

July 17 - 19, 2007

You’ll have an opportunity to try out devices like an iPod, digital camera, GPS, Palm Handheld (with wireless Internet), USB flash drive, memory card reader, Creative Zen Video MP3 player, and PlayStation Portable. This is not only an opportunity to learn more about some of the devices your patrons are already using, but more importantly to get a broader sense of the kinds of technology that is available today.


Library Policy Documents for Effective Library Operations

June 13 , 2007

John will provide a pragmatic approach that libraries can follow to determine where their policies are, where they should be going, and priorities on how to get there.


Brain Snack: Developing a Library Marketing Plan, Part 1: Creating the Plan

May 25, 2007

Developing a library marketing plan involves more than just compiling a list of good ideas that wind up collecting dust on a shelf because you don't have the time, money or expertise to execute them. Presenter Mark Ibach shed some light on the kinds of things you should be doing, and why you should consider eliminating other activities you may have done for a long time.


Money Matters! Tips for planning, preparing & getting your public library budget

May 24, 2007

Are you tired of hearing your funding body tell you "there's just no extra money for the library this year"? Wondering when it will finally be your turn? Then maybe this workshop, designed primarily for directors of small public libraries, is for you! You'll learn how to tie the library's plan to the budget, how to prepare a compelling budget request, and strategies for presenting and supporting your request. Armed with these tips, maybe it WILL be the library's turn to get the funding you require!


Why Talk About Books? Becoming a Dynamic Book Discussion Leader

May 16, 2007

Can the way a book is written affect the reader? Yes. So can the person who pesents it. Learning to be a dynamic book discussion leader is a skill that can be developed by anyone. This program is a guide for those who wish to begin or maintain a book club. You'll learn how to conduct a quality book discussion using titles that will generate interesting debate. Basic instructions for running any book discussion are included, ranging from selecting the leader, to finding the participants, choosing the title, and conducting the discussion. This program shows you how to use your own creativity to produce a rich experience for those who participate in your discussion.


Discussion of Attorney General Opinion on Video Surveillance

April 25 , 2007

This may not be a topic you think about every day, but if you do have a video surveillance system at your library (or are thinking of installing one), you may want to invest some time and attend this program. It will feature a panel discussion, with plenty of time for questions and answers. The session also will be available through OPAL, but you will have to submit your questions using the text feature (no voice participation). Participants also can submit their questions to Jean Anderson before the program and she will forward them to the panelists. Find out more about what the current law says and how it’s been interpreted to apply to libraries and patron confidentiality. You’ll also learn about some possible legislative proposals WLA is supporting


CCBC Presents: Great New Books for Older Children and Teens

March 30, 2007

Find out about some of the outstanding books published for older children and teens in 2006. This convenient new workshop will feature librarians from the Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) talking about books for older children (Grade 4 and up) and teenagers that are included in CCBC Choices 2007, the CCBC's most recent best-of-the-year list. The librarians will also discuss 2007 American Library Association award books for older children.


Reel to Real: Films and Discussion about Topics that Matter

March 28, 2007

There is an abundance of thought-provoking films available on Wisconsin Public Television, and this will teach librarians how to build community programs around these films. For example, in most community programs, participants will view the film together at the library then engage in a discussion about the content and what it means for their particular community. Most Public Television films (or documentaries) can be used by libraries in this fashion, and this CE program will walk you through the steps that will help make your efforts successful. Using the film “Waging A Living” as an example, participants will learn how to choose a film, and the guidelines to follow for partnering with other organizations. You’ll also learn how to plan an event, promote it, and how to facilitate the discussion or select a facilitator from your community.


CCBC Presents: Great New Books for Younger Children

March 23, 2007

Find out about some of the outstanding books published for younger children in 2006. This convenient new workshop will feature librarians Katy Horning and Megan Schliesman from the Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) talking about books for children from birth through Grade 3 that are included in CCBC Choices 2007, the CCBC's most recent best-of-the-year list. The librarians will also discuss 2007 American Library Association award books for younger children.


Brain Snack: Overdrive & MP3 Players

March 9, 2007

Join Dan Jacobson and Nichole Fromm for discussion of what's new with OverDrive downloadable audiobooks, compatible mp3 players, and how SCLS members are using and supporting OverDrive products. Bring your success stories and questions!


NextGen Librarianship: Where Do We Go From Here

February 9, 2007

Today's multigenerational library workforce faces a number of both internal and external challenges. To meet these challenges, we need to learn how to work together effectively, keep connected and current, and draw on individuals' unique strengths. In a greying profession, we also need to pay attention to succession planning, passing on institutional wisdom, and recruiting, retaining, and mentoring the next generation.


Filing Your State Annual Report

January 18, 2007

This session on filing the Wisconsin Public Library Annual Report online is designed especially for new directors or others completing the report for the first (or nearly first) time, or for anyone who has recently experienced questions or problems with the report. However, anyone who is working on the state annual report should find it a helpful review and is welcome to attend.


Brain Snack: The Second Stacks: Talking about Nonfiction in a Fiction World

January 12, 2007

When someone asks us to suggest a "good book," how many of us automatically assume they're asking for fiction? In today's atmosphere of reality television, the explosion of memoir publishing, and what Chuck Klosterman has referred to as the overall "rise of the real," it's time to incorporate nonfiction titles into our reading and advising lives. In this brainsnack you'll be introduced to nonfiction genres and styles, learn how you can think of nonfiction in terms of the "appeal factors" often applied to fiction, and take away several practical tips for exploring the "second stacks." Sarah Statz Cords, Madison Public Library, is the presenter.


Brain Snack: What libraries should know about Wisconsin's Open Meetings Law

November 10, 2006

Wisconsin's open meetings law places very specific requirements on governmental bodies, including public libraries, regarding noticing and conducting meetings. Join Cheryl Becker, SCLS Public Library Consultant, to review the basics of the law. Be sure your board meetings are in compliance with the law, avoiding potential significant penalties for its violation.


Best New Technologies: Keeping up with the Storm

October 27, 2006

New technologies keep coming at a rapid pace, and librarians are subject to the stress of being expected to both absorb and implement them. Is there any surprise that the challenges faced in keeping up with this storm of new technology is where the talk turns when librarians gather? Our cause for optimism is that a handful of these new technologies may actually help librarians to more effectively connect with their communities and involve community members in developing resources and content. This program will examine the challenges librarians face as we enter the world of Web 2.0. It will explore several of the newest technologies, investigate why librarians are adopting them and how they’re being used, and examine sensible approaches to choosing and implementing the technology that are right for your library.


Legal Reference in a Nutshell

October 19, 2006

The presenters, librarians from the Public Services Department of the Wisconsin State Law Library, provided an overview of the many print and online resources available to public librarians to help them provide legal reference service.

Handouts (password required)


Brain Snack: Adult Programming

September 8, 2006

From book discussions and author visits to current event seminars, computer classes, and gardening programs, adults register for and enthusiastically attend a wide variety of public library programs. This one-hour session, led by Jean anderson, Adult Services Librarian at Sun Prairie Public Library, will provide you with ideas, suggestions, and procedures that you may be able to incorporate into planning adult programs for your library.

Brain Snack: Website Design & Usability

July 14, 2006

This web conference provides important guidelines for a usable and accessible website. Nichole Fromm, SCLS Library Technology Project Support Specialist, compiled resources for further reading:

Technology Tools and Competencies

June 7 , 2006

Aaron Schmidt, a reference librarian at Thomas Ford Memorial Library in Western Springs, Illinois, and a frequent presenter at library and technology conferences, gave us a current look at some very cool & useful new technology tools, gadgets and software that may be used in public libraries.  Additionally, he discussed important technology competencies for public library staff.


Violence in the Workplace

May 12, 2006

This workshop provided public services staff with safety tips and proven techniques to address possible violence and conflict in the workplace. The presenter was a recently retired veteran of the Wisconsin Capitol Police Department in Madison and has over 20 years of law enforcement experience. She has presented this course to thousands of municipal, county, state & federal employees to help them develop measures to prevent workplace violence and to properly respond to it when and if it occurs.


PLA Conference Highlights

March 31, 2006

This WisLine Web session presented the highlights of the 2006 Public Library Association Annual Conference. SCLS staff and members who attended the conference in Boston March 21st through 25th shared information from the conference's best sessions.   The powerpoint below includes weblinks to the PLA conference program, blog and past handouts, as well as links to presenters websites and presentations.

Overdrive Q&A

March 17, 2006

Stef Morrill demonstrated Overdrive, the product that allows patrons to check out and download digital audiobooks to listen to on their computer or transfer to an MP3 player or CD.   Her powerpoint slides below provide notes and information on the basics of Overdrive.


Disaster Planning and Recovery

February  23, 2006

Miriam Kahn presented a morning workshop that included information on disaster plans and recovery processes.  She covered recovery of water damaged collections, dealing with mold and indoor air quality issues, basics of insurance for collections and buildings, recovery from physical damage to computers during a disaster, proactive planning to recover automated systems, information services and administrative records, and staffing issues before, during and after a disaster.  



Filing Your Public Library Annual Report
January 26, 2006

This workshop presented an introduction and overview on completing and filing the State Annual Report.  Included were instructions on gathering the required information, identifying possible problem areas, and filing the report online. The presenter of this online workshop was Cheryl Becker, Public Library Consultant.


Brain Snack: New Communications Online
January 6, 2006

The presenter at this web conference was Nichole Fromm, SCLS Library Technology Project Support Specialist.  The program looked at some of the newest forms of online communication, as well as some standbys -- from good ol' email and listservs to IM and chat to wikis and blogs, and how libraries and their patrons might use them while avoiding information overload.

The Boomers are Coming!  What Do They Want?
October 20, 2005

The presenter at this workshop was Allan Kleiman, Chair, RUSA/RSS Library Service to an Aging Population Committee (ALA) and Head of Reference, Westfield Memorial Library, (NJ).  The program looked at the needs of active, engaged older adults, addressing programs, collections, spaces, and services.
Handouts: (all PDF)


Bridging the Generation Gap
September 22 , 2005

Deborah Spring Laurel presented an overview of the four current generational groups in the adult population, the veterans, the boomers, Gen X, and the millennials, and offered strategies that work best with each age group.  The emphasis of the program was on relationships in the workplace, but the information provided also applied to dealing with patrons and the public.


Hand-in-Hand: Building a Community of Emergent Readers

An Early Literacy Symposium for Youth Services Librarians

September 9, 2005

This day-long event provided ideas for adding programs for babies and walkers to library services to promote early literacy.  The keynote speaker was Jane Marino, author of Babies in the Library.  Afternoon presenters were Brianne Klink, Community Coordinated Child Care; Joan Laurian, Dane County UW Extension Family Living Coordinator and Kelly Verheyden, Youth Services Librarian, Madison Public Library; and Shawn Brommer, Youth Services Coordinator, SCLS.

Handouts (all PDF):

Jane Mario's presentation (in PDF):


Reader's Advisory on the Latest Titles and Hot Authors
August 25, 2005

Description: Add to your reader advisory skills.  Learn how to use the Internet to find information on forthcoming and newest book titles, as well as who are the "hot" authors.
Presenter: Jane Jorgenson, Reference Librarian, Madison Public Library-Ashman Branch

Handout: "Hot Stuff" Readers' Advisory Webliography (PDF)

FISH! - Catch the Energy.  Release the Potential
June 16, 2005
Watch the video and get inspired like thousands of organizations worldwide.  The FISH! Philosophy is fun and it helps you to see that every individual has the power to create a more interesting, playful, and energetic workplace.
Presenter: Christine Ray, Manager, Learning & Development, Highsmith Inc.

Group charts (PDF) | General handout (PDF)

Leaping Tall Buildings: Creating a graphic novels collection
May 19, 2005
Do you know the difference between a speech bubble and a thought balloon? Do you want to increase circulation and bring new users to your library? Then register for this workshop to learn more about graphic novels.
Presenters: Eric Norton, McMillan Public Library, Wisconsin Rapids & Hollis Rudiger, Cooperative Children’s Book Center, School of Education, UW – Madison
Contact Hours: 2.5

Handouts (all PDF)

Strategic Planning

May 18, 2005
Introduces public library staff to the Public Library Association planning process The New Planning for Results.  Participants become familiar with library planning concepts including community vision statements, library service responses, resource allocation formulas, and simplified evaluation strategies.
Presenter: Sandra Nelson, author or co-author of four of the books in the Public Library Association Results series, Nashville (TN)
Contact Hours: 5.5

Handout (PDF)


Locating Wisconsin State Documents on the Internet
April 28, 2005
Takes the mystery out of searching for documents available online from the various government agencies.
Presenter: Arden Rice, State Documents Librarian, Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau
Contact Hours: 1.5

Web sites demonstrated during program

Connecting Boys with Books
April 15, 2005
Addresses the genres that appeal to boys and offers ideas for successful programming drawing on his own experiences as a youth specialist and library director.
Presenter: Michael Sullivan, author of Connecting Boys with Books and Public Library Director, Greenland (NH)
Contact Hours: 2.5

Handout: Books for Boys (PDF)

Windows 2000 Skill-Building Training

March - April

This workshop is aimed at improving the basic Windows skills needed to make a successful transition to Horizon (automated online catalog) and to help you be more proficient when using any Microsoft software applications.
Trainer: Barbara Rowe, Madison Area Technical College
Contact Hours: 3

Handout (PDF) | PowerPoint file | Table of Contents (PDF)


For more information about Continuing Education, contact Jean Anderson.