Updates from State Library Services: Prepare for Tax Season, Girls Who Code, and more

Updates from State Library Services

November 20, 2018

Updates from State Library Services

Girls Who Code

Join Girls Who Code Partnership and Launch a Free Club

State Library Services is partnering with Girls Who Code to bring free computer science opportunities to elementary, middle, and high school girls (and boys) across Minnesota. We would love for your school or library to host a club!

Girls Who Code Clubs are no-cost afterschool programs for girls in grades 3-5 or grades 6-12 to join a fellowship of supportive peers and use computer science to change the world. The program targets girls, but no one is excluded from participating, so boys are welcome too. Clubs are led by facilitators who can be teachers, librarians, parents, or volunteers from any background or field. No prior knowledge is required; many facilitators have no technical experience and learn to code alongside their club members.

Read through an overview of the curriculum for both age groups, and then attend a Girls Who Code Club informational webinar on Thursday, December 6, at either 1 p.m. or 4 p.m. This webinar is intended only for individuals who have not already applied to start a club. If you're unable to attend, the webinar will be recorded and shared with everyone who registers. You can also contact Leah Larson (651-582-8604) if you have questions about how to get started.

Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

You Be the Juror – for Prestigious Scholastic Writing Awards

Minnesota is a Region-at-Large partner for the 2019 Scholastic Writing Awards. As a partner, State Library Services is recruiting up to 20 jurors to read and rate writing submissions from creative teens in grades 7-12. Since 1923, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards have recognized the vision, ingenuity, and talent of our nation’s youth, and provided opportunities for creative teens to be celebrated. Alumni include luminaries Sylvia Plath, Truman Capote, and Joyce Carol Oates.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are presented by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. The Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to identify students with exceptional artistic and literary talent, and present their remarkable work to the world through the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Participating students receive opportunities for recognition, exhibition, publication, and scholarships.

Please consider applying to be a Scholastic Writing Award juror, or offering the opportunity to other interested staff or community members. Applications are due Tuesday, December 11, 2018. Jurors will attend a training webinar in December, and will then dedicate approximately 10-15 hours to scoring a maximum of 110 submissions from December 28, 2018-January 11, 2019. For more information, please contact Joe Manion (651-582-8640).


Prepare + Prosper

Order Outreach Materials and Attend a Webinar to Prepare for Tax Season

Your library probably receives at least a few questions about taxes during the tax season. State Library Services is working again with Prepare + Prosper’s statewide outreach campaign, Claim it! to provide your library with free resources and a webinar in December.

Order outreach materials from Prepare + Prosper for your library to help individuals find out if they qualify for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit and to help them locate a free tax preparation site. Place your order to receive these free materials in time for tax season.

Libraries in the nine-county metro area: order your 2019 Tax Season Outreach Materials through the online Prepare + Prosper order form.  

Libraries in Greater Minnesota: order your 2019 Tax Season Claim It! Outreach Materials through the Prepare + Prosper online order form.  

Prepare + Prosper and State Library Services will host a webinar for libraries with resources and information to help you during the 2018 tax season. The webinar will take place on Tuesday, December 18, 11 a.m.-noon. Please register for the Taxes 101 for Minnesota Libraries webinar today. Then, on December 18, join the meeting for Taxes 101. Please contact Emily Kissane (651-582-8508) if you have questions or would like to request a reasonable accommodation to participate in this event. Note: MDE requires a two-week advance notice in order to provide the requested accommodation and requires a 48-hour notice in order to cancel a requested accommodation.

Updates from Our Partners

CCC at Bay Area Discovery Museum

Reimagine School Readiness with a Toolkit for Libraries 

Recent research demonstrates that the first eight years of life are the most vital for overall human development, and are foundational for a person’s future health, education, and economic success. With this in mind, the Bay Area Discovery Museum’s Center for Childhood Creativity (CCC) undertook a multi-year project to create, pilot, refine, and publish the Reimagining School Readiness Toolkit that helps libraries provide evidenced-based school readiness programming for their communities.

Designed specifically for libraries, this online toolkit builds on the research findings from Reimagining School Readiness: A Position Paper with Key Findings (2016), compiled by the CCC. The research-backed resources in the toolkit include bookmarks, flyers, posters, and social media messages—all in six languages—which can be customized with your library’s logo. For more information, please email the Center for Childhood Creativity.

Winter snowman

The State Library Services staff wishes you and yours a happy holiday season!

About State Library Services

State Library Services staff cropped

State Library Services, a division of the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), partners with libraries to achieve equity and excellence in our collective work for Minnesotans. Division staff are consultants who help libraries plan, develop and implement high-quality services that address community needs. State Library Services administers federal grant, state aid, and state grant programs that benefit all types of libraries.