Skye Corey | Movers & Shakers 2019 – Community Builders

Skye Corey was still in library school in 2014 when she attended an Ontario Library Association Conference and saw a presentation by staff from the Toronto Public Library about their Middle Childhood Framework. It focuses on developing innovative programs, services, and collections for six- to 12-year-olds through intimate spaces that draw kids in and inspire them.

Skye Corey

CURRENT POSITION

Youth Services Librarian, Meridian Library District, ID

DEGREE

MLIS, Western University, London, Ont., 2014

FOLLOW

@SkyeCorey08; alsc.ala.org/blog

Photo ©2019 Matt Lawrence Photography

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Tiny Library, Big Goals

Skye Corey was still in library school in 2014 when she attended an Ontario Library Association Conference and saw a presentation by staff from the Toronto Public Library about their Middle Childhood Framework. It focuses on developing innovative programs, services, and collections for six- to 12-year-olds through intimate spaces that draw kids in and inspire them.

Corey was equally inspired. “I knew that I wanted to create something similar, adding structure and strategy to library services for youth” under age five, she says. “I never imagined that the opportunity would come so soon in my career.”

But it did. A year later, she joined the Meridian Library District, and, by August 2017, Corey was appointed by Director Gretchen Caserotti (herself a 2010 Mover & Shaker) to lead the library’s Early Learning Taskforce. Under Corey’s leadership, the task force conducted a series of internal and external environmental scans that helped identify needs and develop a framework document looking ahead as far as 2024, as well as the implementation action plan to make it happen.

The first major outcome is the Tiny Library, a 300 square foot interactive learning library aimed at children zero to five in a repurposed shipping container. “Not only did Skye step up with grant writing, program planning, furniture assessment, public speaking, and true passion for the project,” Caserotti says, “[she] developed Tiny into a ‘space as program,’ organizing the space around the five early literacy skills from Every Child Ready To Read, creating a calendar and series of interactive displays that empower parents and caregivers.”

Since it opened on October 1, 2018, the Tiny Library has welcomed 1,400 patrons, and more than 600 have attended programs. “I like to compare the Tiny Library to a sonnet: small and confined in terms of space, but within that space there is ample room for creativity,” Corey says. “I’m excited to see how we can use the Tiny Library as a pilot site for many of the framework’s recommended initiatives and plans.”

The importance of being given a shot early in one’s career is not lost on Corey. That’s why she’s the mentor for Meridian’s Jr. Librarian Program, a paid yearlong internship for a high schooler, which received a Public Library Association Inclusive Internship Initiative (PLA III) grant in 2018.

“I feel a deep sense of pride when the Jr. Librarians and PLA III interns present to the library board and say they now want to be children’s librarians,” she says. “It makes me cry every time. Bringing along the brightest and the best to this great profession is a true gift.”

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Vallivue School

Congratulations to you Skye for thinking outside of the box and using your passion with such an important age group. I look forward to coming to visit you and your 'tiny' library soon.

Posted : Mar 11, 2019 01:47


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