Grace Jackson-Brown, MLS, Ph.D. (GJackson-Brown@MissouriState.edu)GJackson-Brown@MissouriState.edu October 6, 2011.

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Promoting Diversity and Literacy, African American Read-In Programs in Missouri Libraries

Promoting Diversity and Literacy, African American Read-In Programs in Missouri LibrariesGrace Jackson-Brown, MLS, Ph.D.(GJackson-Brown@MissouriState.edu)October 6, 2011

1The African American Read-In (AARI) is an exemplary cultural program and reading initiativeWhat is cultural programming?

programs and series of programs presented by libraries that seek to entertain, enlighten, educate, and involve adult and family audiences, primarily in the disciplines of the arts, humanities, sciences, and public policy or community issues. This type of programming is designed to elicit dialogue, discussion , and consideration of ideas and issues, as well as to further independent study.(Deborah A. Robertson IN Cultural Programming for Libraries, Chicago: ALA, 2005, p. 3)Cultural Programming.Helps to illuminate the experiences, beliefs, and values that unite us as human beings. They stimulate us to make connections where we noticed none beforebetween our ancestors and ourselves, between one culture and another, between the community and the individual. (quote from Susan Brandehoff, editor of the Whole Person Catalog, and found in Cultural Programming for Libraries, p. 2)Benefits of Cultural Programming in LibrariesProvides opportunities for community engagementDraws new and experienced users into the libraryIntroduces users to diverse materials and services in the library Promotes reading and literacy4What is the African American Read-In? The African American Read-In(AARI)is a national event to promote reading and to celebrate black authors that is sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). Originated by the black caucus of the NCTE, the program has also been endorsed by the International Reading Association. Since 1989, over a million readers have joined in the reading celebration.www.ncte.org/action/aari

5How to become involved in the AARI? www.ncte.org/action/aari/packetinfo

6 Involvement in the AARI in Missouri Libraries

There were 29,747 recorded Missourian participants of the AARI from 2009 through 2011. The numbers were 8,307 in 2011; 13,378 in 2010;And 8,062 in 2009. The largest library type of participating library institution in the AARI is the school library, and mainly within larger cities or metropolitan areas. Public libraries and academic libraries have also recorded participation. However, participation may be under reported because the Host Report Cards may not always be filled out and turned in online.7 Involvement in the AARI in Missouri Libraries

Involvement in the AARI in Missouri Libraries

Interviews with 2 Missouri academic librarians about their AARI Participation:

UMKC Miller Nichols LibraryLincoln University Inman E. Page LibraryMs. Gloria Tibbs, Teaching & Learning Librarian

Ms. Lois Marshall,Public Services CoordinatorMissouri Libraries UMKC Miller Nichols Library & AARI

Missouri Libraries AARI Involvement (continued)Lincoln University, Inman E. Page Library

The five institutional partners of the Springfield African American Read-In Missouri State University Libraries & other MSUDrury UniversitySpringfield-Green County Library DistrictSpringfield Public SchoolsNAACP Springfield Chapter

Events of the Springfield African-American Read-IN2009 - 2012Young Writers Workshop led by Patricia McKissackStorytelling by Gladys Gaines CoggswellStorytime for children & families at Missouri HotelBooktalks & other activities at branch public librariesFebruary 2010 African American Poetry Reading PerformanceFebruary 2011 African American Poetry Reading Encore PerformanceNovember 2011 Tales of Wonder Storytelling WorkshopFebruary 2012 February Storytelling Main Event Springfield AARIC Pre-Event October 2009Young Writers Workshop featuring award-winning authorPatricia McKissack

15Springfield AARIC Pre-Event Nov. 2009

Master StorytellerGladys Gaines Coggswell

16

Springfield AARICFinale Event, February 22, 2010Attendance during the finale AARI events held on Feb. 21 and Feb. 22, 2010 numbered more than 350 persons. Documentation from media and co-sponsor partner comments after the events was extremely positive. Here is a news feature on the front page of the Springfield News-Leader with the headline Rhythm in the Words, with Meter and Volume, with Humor and Sorrow, African American Poetry Draws a Diverse Crowd.172011 Springfield AARI Encore Poetry Reading

An Encore Poetry Reading Performance was held on February 28, 2011 at the Northview Center in Doling Park. The Springfield Park District became a partner of the AARI for this particular years event and provided the event host location. In 2012 the Springfield AARI will have a storytelling theme and or that year the Storytellers of the Ozarks will partner with the AARI.18Future Keys for Success of the African American Read-In Programming in MO LibrariesCollaborate with programming partnersHave a Project Leader who is in charge of coordination and communicationBegin by setting project goals and objectivesHave a Steering Committee whose members can each be responsible for key tasks & recruit volunteer helpersDecide early how resources (people, time, money) will be pooled19QUESTIONS?