Field Trips News Programs

Field Trip: Morton Arboretum

Date:  Friday, September 21

Time: 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Location: The Morton Arboretum, 4100 Illinois 53, Lisle, IL 60532

Register Here


The Morton Arboretum was established in 1922 and envisioned to be a “great outdoor museum of trees.” Situated on over 1,700 acres on the banks of the DuPage River in Lisle, IL. The arboretum is home to 222,000 live plants and 4,300 taxa and houses a library, visitor’s center, children’s garden, maze, plant clinic, miles of trails, roads, and special exhibits.

Join us for a field trip to the arboretum which will include a tour of the Sterling Library, a Q&A session with staff and self-guided tour of the Children’s Garden and 30-minute narrated tram tour of the arboretum property. “The entire Arboretum has been certified as a Nature Explore Classroom, rich with opportunities for healthy learning. The unique areas of the Children’s Garden work as casual, outdoor classrooms that blend active learning and multi-sensory adventures.” The Q&A session will allow attendees to ask questions and gain insight of how to apply these concepts at their libraries. For more information on the Morton Arboretum, please click here.

This event is intended for library staff only.

Cost: FREE

Register Here


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News Programs

Civic Engagement at the Library: Programs for the Political Climate

Date: Wednesday, May 23rd

Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Location: Arlington Heights Memorial Library, 500 N. Dunton Ave. Arlington Heights, IL 60004

Libraries are increasingly asked to lead their communities in addressing political and other hot button topics. However, staff may feel at a loss for how to approach these less traditional programming topics.

At this panel, presenters will discuss the various initiatives they’ve led at their libraries ranging from programing on talking to kids about race, to how to engage elected officials, to holding a kindness rally. Participants will leave with strategies to successfully launch civic and political programming at their libraries.


Jose Cruz, Middle School Services Librarian, Oak Park Public Library

Skye Lavin, Adult Services Manager, Forest Park Public Library

Mike Monahan, Specialty Info Services Supervisor, Arlington Heights Public Library

Susan Wolf, Reference Manager, Northbrook Public Library

Cost: FREE




Small Town Connections – Civic Engagement at FPPL – Skye Lavin

Politics, Civics, and Public Libraries – Mike Monahan

Openness, Inclusivity, and Civic Engagement –  Susan Wolf


News Programs

Equity in Making: A Framework for Embodied Learning and Educational Justice

Date: Thursday, March 15th

Time: 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Location: Skokie Public Library, 5215 Oakton Street, Skokie, IL 60077

The maker movement has transformed learning in libraries, introducing maker education opportunities for underserved youth populations. But what are the best practices in facilitating making with youth and young adults?

Dr. Shirin Vossoughi is an assistant professor of Learning Sciences at Northwestern University where she researches making and tinkering in afterschool settings. Join her and her colleague Dr. Natalie Davis to learn how to approach making with youth audiences using a framework that is rooted in valuing joint activity and engaging children and youth as agentive thinkers.

This presentation will look at how formal and informal educators facilitate making, what is considered making across many cultures, and how facilitation practices effect learner interactions. Participants will leave with best practices for improving their maker experiences at their libraries.


Dr. Shirin Vossoughi, Associate Professor of Learning Sciences, Northwestern University

Dr. Natalie R. Davis, Post Doctoral Fellow in Learning Sciences within the School of Education and Social Policy, Northwestern University

Partnership: This program is in partnership with Tinker.

Cost: FREE – Sponsored by Today’s Business Solutions and H.W. Wilson.


Networking Programs

Beyond Staff Day: Everyday employee engagement

Date: Friday, February 2nd

Time: 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Location: Indian Trails Public Library District, 355 Schoenbeck Rd, Wheeling, IL 60090

Studies show that employee engagement correlates with increased productivity and service, job satisfaction and retention of top talent. How are libraries engaging their employees and cultivating supportive staff environments in ways that go beyond team building activities at staff or inservice days?

Hear from a library who redesigned their culture along with their building, a library with an ongoing training program for staff that encourages personal and professional growth, libraries that run self-care and wellness activities for their staffs throughout the year, a library that has been among Chicago Tribune’s Top 100 workplaces 4 years in a row, and more!

Panelists will share examples of staff engagement initiatives from their libraries, followed by the chance to discuss in small groups. Participants will leave with ideas to bring back to their teams or managers.


Sharon Grimm, Staff Learning Coordinator, Oak Park Public Library

Mimosa Shah, Adult Program Coordinator, Skokie Public Library

Mary Smith, Head of Youth Services, Mount Prospect Public Library

Regina Townsend, Teen Services & Outreach Librarian, Forest Park Public Library

Ryann Uden, Deputy Director, Indian Trails Public Library District

Cost: FREE – Sponsored by Today’s Business Solutions and H.W. Wilson.

This event is intended for library staff, library professionals, and library school students.


Learn While You Earn – Sharon Grimm

Contemplative Traces, Spaces, and Failures – Mimosa Shah

Staff Recognition – Mary Smith

Regina Townsend – Mindful Staff, Meaningful Service – Regina Townsend

Culture Code Presentation – Ryann Uden

Indian Trails Public Library District’s Culture Code Statement

Field Trips Programs

Field Trip: Stony Island Arts Bank


Date: Saturday, August 12

Time: 10:30am – 11:30am

Location: Stony Island Arts Bank, 6760 South Stony Island Ave, Chicago, IL 60649

The Stony Island Arts Bank is a hybrid gallery, media archive, library and community center in the South Shore neighborhood. Designed by William Gibbons Uffendell and built in 1923, the bank at 68th Street and Stony Island Avenue was once a vibrant community savings and loan. By the eighties, the branch had closed and the building remained deteriorating for decades. Reopened in October 2015 by the Rebuild Foundation, the radically restored building serves as a space for neighborhood residents to preserve, access, reimagine and share their heritage – and a destination for artists, scholars, curators, and collectors to research and engage with South Side history.

Join us for a tour of this special and beautiful community engagement space! Find out more about the Stony Island Arts Bank and the Rebuild Foundation here.

This event is intended for library staff only.


Programs Resources

Management From All Sides

Date: Friday, May 19thManagement From All SidesGail BordManagement From All SidesGail Borden Library, ElginMay 19th, 10-00Manen Library, ElginMay 19th, 10-00
Time: 10:00-12:30
Location: Gail Borden Public Library
270 N Grove Ave, Elgin

Are you interested in learning more about management in a public library? Are you new to a supervisory or management role and want practical pointers on how to succeed? Join us for a panel and small group discussions on a variety of management topics, including teamwork, career progression, adjusting to management styles and more.  Come away with a list of great resources that you can use as you continue in your career.


Erica Christianson, Assistant Director, Ela Area Public Library

Jolie Duncan, Assistant Manager Customer Services, Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Monica Harris, Executive Director, Schaumburg Township District Library

Nancy Kim Phillips, Deputy Director Strategic Operations, Mount Prospect Public Library

Robert Moffett, Division Chief of Access Services, Gail Borden Public Library

Christina Stoll, Adult Services Manager, Indian Trails Library

Cost: FREE – Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Recorded Books, and TBS


One Time, at Tech Camp: Modern Learning Environments Teens Love

Date: Thursday, April 27, 2017

Time: 10:00am – 1:00pm

Location: Elmhurst Public Library, 125 S Prospect Ave, Elmhurst IL, 60126

Today, many libraries are seeing teens fall for ongoing technology-focused camps. Going beyond what a single program accomplishes, tech camps build a learning environment for exploration and camaraderie. Speakers will discuss Gail Borden Public Library’s Summer Digital Media Camp, Fountaindale Public Library’s Summer Technology Bootcamps and the Girls Who Code after school program.

Register here!

Parking is limited so please consider carpooling. Extra parking is available at the Elmhurst Art Museum next door.



Audio & Video Camps

Andre Dyson, Studio 270 Digital Media Lab Assistant & Billie Moffett, Manager of Studio 270, Gail Borden Public Library

Summer Bootcamps

Randi Carreno, Teen Services Librarian & Jeffrey Fisher, Studio Services Manager, Studio 300, Fountaindale Public Library

Girls Who Code

Sharon Hrycewicz, Children’s Reference and Technology Coordinator, Downers Grove Public Library


Cost: FREE – Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Recorded Books, and TBS

Register here!

Field Trips Networking Programs

Field Trip: ALA Headquarters

ala-squareDate: Thursday, March 30

Time: 2:00pm- 4:00pm

Location: American Library Association, 40 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL

Join the Recharge Committee for a futures-focused field trip to the American Library Association in Chicago.  Hear about some of the ways that ALA is planning for the future of libraries with a visit to their headquarters, including a tour of the facilities and a roundtable discussion with ALA staffers from a variety of units.  Learn about ALA’s future-focused initiatives and activities as well as ways to maximize your membership.

Register today!


Programs Resources

Build Your Personal Brand

Date: Saturday, February 4, 2017

Time: 10:00am – 1:00pmbuildyourbrandgraphic

Location: Des Plaines Public Library,  1501 Ellinwood Avenue, Des Plaines

Your personal and professional brand is important. It matters when you seek a new position, promotion, or any kind of new pursuit. During this panel discussion, you will learn how to present yourself within your community as well as in the larger library world to meet your professional goals. Stay after the panel presentation for a LinkedIn/resume session with a peer review and the opportunity to get a professional head shot.

  • Get a digital professional headshot with Sabella Photography
  • LinkedIn Session and Profile/Resume Peer Review


Cost: FREE – Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Recorded Books, and TBS



Shannon Distel — Specialty Info Services Manager, Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Amy Koester — You & Family Program Supervisor, Skokie Public Library

Roberta Johnson — Assistant Director, Des Plaines Public Library



Build Your Personal Brand slides (Distel)

Tips for Resumes, Cover Letters, and Interviewing (Johnson)

Creating Opportunities Through Purposeful Self-Promotion slides (Koester)

Personal Branding Resources (Recharge Committee)

Audio Recording Part 1 of 2 (58:08)

Audio Recording Part 2 of 2 (1:13:44)

Programs Resources

Extending Our Reach: Libraries, Social Workers, and Community Partnerships

Date: Tuesday, November 1, 2016


Time: 2:00-4:30pm

Location: Arlington Heights Memorial Library (Hendrickson Room), 500 N Dunton Ave, Arlington Heights

Increasingly libraries across the country are seeing a need to provide social services to the populations they serve. Many libraries are starting to work more closely with social service agencies in their communities and some libraries have hired social workers as part of their staff. The panel will provide insights from three area libraries and their experiences in extending their reach to address the social service needs in their community. After the presentations there will be time to ask questions.


Victoria Bran, Village of Mount Prospect, Community Connection Center Coordinator

Maria Garstecki, South Branch Manager/Outreach Librarian, Mount Prospect Public Library

Laurel Johnson, Young Adult Librarian, Skokie Public Library

Robert Simmons, Manager of Community Resources, Oak Park Public Library


Cost: FREE – Sponsored by H.W. Wilson, Gale Cengage Learning and TBS



Laurel Johnson

Victoria Bran / Maria Garstecki

Robert Simmons