YSS Conference

2020 Schedule and Workshops


8:15 am: Registration and breakfast
9:00 am: Welcome and keynote
10:45 am: Breakout session 1
12:00 pm: Lunch and speeches
1:30 pm: Author signing and vendor show
2:30 pm: Breakout sessions 2
3:45 pm: Breakout session 3
4:30 pm: End of conference

Keynote Speaker

Once Upon a Time, presented by Ellen Oh
An author’s self reflection on the power of words in the journey of life from immigrant child to lawyer to writer. She will also discuss the importance of the grassroots movement We Need Diverse Books and why it is important for all children to see positive representation of themselves and others in the pages of a book.

15 Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions will be held at Hawn Memorial Library, the Clayton Opera House, and the Antique Boat Museum. (Shuttle service will be available for those in need.)

Breakout session 1, 10:45-11:30am

The Great Give Back
Derek Ivie, Suffolk Cooperative Library System
The mission of this initiative is to provide a day of opportunities for the patrons of the public libraries of New York State to participate in meaningful, service-oriented experiences. Come learn about how it began, how to participate, and different ways to fit it into your library!

Inspiring Sensory Play; Babies and Toddlers
Jennifer Preisser, Greece Public Library
Engage your littlest patrons with a program that incorporates the early literacy skill of play. This program will provide participants with instructions on how to implement a sensory program on any budget.

Making of a Book
Ellen Oh
Getting a book published can be a long and arduous process. Ellen will share her publishing journey from being an unpublished writer to getting an agent and selling her book. She will share how the seed of an idea would take her on a ten year journey to publishing her first book.

The Science of Comics: Using Graphic Novels to Enhance STEAM Programming in Your Library
Lyndsie Guy and Keturah Cappadonia, Southern Tier Library System
Generate interest in science and technology with the inclusion of STEAM-focused comics in your library programming! By focusing on the art of graphic novels, library users will find STEAM to be both interesting and accessible.

Thriving in Youth Services
Hope Decker, Pioneer Library System
Working in libraries with children and teens in fun, and sometimes it is stressful. In this session, we will explore practical ways to avoid (or recover from) burnout and find a place of sustainable flourishing.

Breakout session 2, 2:30-3:15pm

Books & Badges: Collaborating with the Girl Scouts
Suzanne Macaulay, Clifton Springs Library
Using books and other resources, libraries can help Girl Scouts complete their Journey awards and earn skill builder badges. Scouts working on their Bronze, Silver, and Gold awards can use the library and its staff to help research and prepare their projects. Go beyond the simple library tour!

HS to College Transition: A Collaborative Effort
Christi Sommerfeldt, Northern New York Library Network
The transition to college is challenging. Join our discussion to learn about the difficulties faced by first-year college students and means to proactively support the transition.

The Importance of Short Stories
Ellen Oh
Reading and writing short stories make better writers. But they also make better readers. Using the WNDB anthologies, Ellen will discuss how MG and YA anthologies are the perfect books to bring reluctant readers into becoming lifelong readers.

NYS Loves Talking is Teaching
Cate Teuten Bohn, NYS Council on Children and Families
Talking is Teaching is an existing national public awareness and action campaign that promotes early brain and language development by encouraging parents and caregivers to talk, read, and sing through everyday actions with their children. Upon completion of this session, attendees will have a thorough understanding of how to use the statewide and their local Talking is Teaching campaigns to bolster their early childhood community work and empower parents and caregivers to actively contribute to their babies’ learning is fun and easy ways.

Tick, Tick, Tick...The Eleventh Hour of Summer
Lorie Brown, Southern Tier Library System
Summer Learning is all set to start… Everything’s ready… Oh! Need ONE more thing to fill that gap on Tuesday morning? Just been invited to do some programming at the farmer’s market? Discover some eleventh hour activities that won’t take King Midas to fund!

Breakout session 3, 3:45-4:30pm

Baby and Me at the Library
Brigid Hubberman, Children’s Reading Connection
Learn how the library can welcome, celebrate, and support families with new babies, helping them to develop an early and lifelong love of libraries. Gain knowledge in positioning your library as an early literacy leader in the community, through effective partnership building and outreach.

Good Neighbors: Partnering with your Local PBS Station
Celeste Oppito, WPBS-DT
Let’s make the most of this beautiful day… by learning more about your friendly neighborhood PBS station! In this session, we’ll talk about what makes PBS an ideal partner for libraries, and how to work together to encourage lifelong learning.

Picture Book Genrefication: Public and School Perspectives
Amy K. Smith, Red Hook Public Library
Jenna Thorn, Netherwood Elementary School
Meghan Harney, Lowville Free Library
Amanda Schiavulli, Onondaga County Public Library
Making the shift from traditional cataloging to categories based on the unique needs and interests of our libraries’ patrons allows us to serve them better. In this panel discussion, public and school librarians share their experiences implementing a reader-centric organizational schema that will encourage browsing and interest-led reading habits.

Sneaky Programming
Samantha Morgan, Adams Free Library
Struggling with program attendance? This interactive workshop will give library staff ideas to create programs that aren’t stuck to a specific day or time. Start planning programs that can be done at the convenience of the patrons.

Stone Soup Storytime: Tackling Poverty through Outreach
Kate Kosior, Clifton Community Library
Clifton Community Library embarked on an innovative project to tackle poverty in one of our poorest communities through literacy! Our storytime allowed children to read, do crafts, and take home poverty relief items - and it allowed the library to grow partnerships that continue today.