10 PROMOTING AFRICAN AMERICAN WRITERS leaders. Within the discussion of each category group for possible partner- ships are embedded ideas for completing Steps Six and Seven: recruiting core individuals or organizations and continue networking followed by marketing. Students and Youth A key user group for all types of libraries is youth. Elementary and sec- ondary teachers and school librarians need look no further than their own schools and school curriculum to begin a strategy for promoting African American writers and other diverse writers. School librarians who work closely with classroom teachers can develop reading lists of African Ameri- can authors to support the school curriculum. They can develop makerspace projects and displays in the library to attract and motivate students to learn more about African American authors and other diverse authors. For exam- ple, librarians may assist students in finding an African American writer to read about by providing reading lists that are closely aligned to classroom curriculum. Students may do creative projects in makerspaces such as designing posters or bookmarks about a book author or a book title. School librarians and classroom teachers can collaborate with student learners to have groups of students or individual students make artistic items around a favorite book and, in the process, incorporate lessons for learning some- thing about the African American author who wrote it. Posters can be dis- played in the library or other places in schools such as the cafeteria. A contest for best poster or most creative artwork might be held and small prizes or recognitions be awarded. Library programmers at any type of library (school, public, or academic) can build contacts with student organizations or youth groups (e.g., in Boys and Girls Clubs or in churches). These groups may agree to become partners with the library to accomplish programming goals. Student and youth orga- nizations generally, if they “buy in” to library programs, bring enthusiasm and have networks that draw in audiences for programs and potential new library users. Try “top-down” and “bottom-up” approaches to make con- nections with instructors or advisors of youth organizations and clubs, as well as making direct contact with youth group leaders and group members. Attend events that youth organize and that are open to the public. Ask youth organization officers for an invitation to attend an organizational meeting to provide information about library services and programs and to ask for their input about possible future programs. Furthermore, National School Library Standards position school librari- ans as learners alongside their student learners and school libraries as places of learning engagement. Collaboration is key in building these strong rela- tionships among the library, the school librarians, classroom instructors, and students. It’s more important than ever to include parents, and indeed
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