Sort of Bilingual: Serving Youth and Young Adults from Spanish-speaking Homes

Spanish/English Dictionary collectionJoin Elizabeth Lynch of Addison Public Library and Kelly MacGregor of Berwyn Public Library for an in-depth look at how they worked to improve service for the teens at their library and a discussion of how you can too.

Children and Young Adults growing up in Spanish-speaking households can encounter unique barriers to academic and social-emotional growth. Addison Public Library surveyed nearly 400 residents with the help of the ALA Diversity Research Grant to get a richer picture of the assets and needs of youth in bilingual homes. Their findings led them to develop new ways of approaching programming and services for bilingual youth. Find out more about the process for collecting useful community data and how you can replicate successful programs in your library.

When: Saturday February 9, 2019 from 11am — 1pm

Where: Butler Children’s Literature Center — Dominican University, Crown Rm 214

RSVP: to by 2/4/19 to reserve a seat

Holiday Break

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The Butler Children’s Literature Center will be closed December 21, 2018 through January 1, 2019. Appointments are available January 2nd—8th and open hours will resume on January 9th on Monday—Thursday from 1 pm — 6 pm.

We thank you for a wonderful 2018 and wish you a happy, healthy, and well-read New Year.

The Hoot: News from the Butler Children’s Literature Center, November 2018

Book Tree

How is it we are already looking at a Christmas tree in the Crown Library? I may not be ready for the holidays just yet, but it does seem appropriate with this wintry weather. And as the year winds down, it also seems appropriate for the requisite year-end, or at least semester-end, recap. So here’s just a quick look at what the Butler Children’s Literature Center has been up to this semester and a sneak peek at what we’re planning for the Spring semester.


Fall Semester Happenings–

Professional Development

This semester we were thrilled to host two professional development events for librarians, teachers, teacher-librarians, and really everyone interested in great books and getting them into the hands of great kids.

Sarah AronsonIn September, we welcomed Evanston author Sarah Aronson for a chat about local authors and creative ways to incorporate their books into your programming. Her presentation, “Made in Illinois: New Books by Illinois Authors and How to Use them in the Classroom (and Library),” sparked an engaging conversation about how collaboration between authors, teachers, and librarians can make books come alive. She also shared information about READ LOCAL, a new initiative by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators for connecting those who create books with those who share them. Find out more at


In October, professional reviewers Janice Del Negro (Associate Professor, Dominican University SOIS) and Hal Patnott (Library Assistant, Oak Park Public Library and former Butler Center Graduate Assistant) led a book reviewing workshop with thoughtful discussion on the history of reviewing and current trends in the field, as well as the resources and skills required for professional reviewing of youth literature.


Illinois Library Association Annual Conference

I was excited to spend three days at the ILA Annual Conference in Peoria this October attending programming sessions, reconnecting with former colleagues and classmates, and chatting with alumni at the DU exhibit table. The knowledge, passion, and collaborative spirit on display throughout the event were truly inspiring. And the ILA staff and conference committee did an impressive job of hosting, organizing, shepherding, and generally managing the chaos of that many librarians in one place.

What’s Up Next–

Butler Center Book Sale

Join us for the annual Butler Center Book Sale on Friday 12/7 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm* and Saturday 12/8 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Get expert book recommendations, enjoy cider and cookies, and check some gifts off your holiday shopping list. Know a teacher or librarian that could use some new books in their collection? Bring them along! Hardcover books are just $5 and paperbacks only $2. Proceeds from the sale support Butler Center programming. *Please note the change in Friday’s closing time from previous book sale announcements.

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Ellin Greene Memorial Storytelling Tea

We were saddened to learn about the passing of Ellin Greene this past summer. This storyteller, author, teacher, mentor, and Butler Children’s Literature Center champion will be missed in the storytelling community and beyond. In her honor, the Butler Center will host a Storytelling Tea on Sunday, January 13th at 3:00 pm. Storytellers Janice Del Negro, Marie Ringenberg, and special guests will share tales in memory of their friend and colleague. If you’d like to join us in celebrating the life and legacy of Ellin Greene, please RSVP to Jen Clemons at by January 4th.


Butler Lecture

carmen_agra_deedy_163x163On March 20, 2019, the Butler Children’s Literature Center welcomes award-winning children’s author, Carmen Agra Deedy for the 7th Annual Butler Lecture. Join us for The End of the Story as Deedy shares rousing tales of her own families’ life experiences and how the most unlikely of teachers coupled with a series of seemingly small events, made an enormous impact in shaping generations of lifelong learners. The lecture begins at 6:00 pm; a reception and book signing will follow the lecture. Registration opens mid-January.


Professional Development

Our professional development series will continue next semester. Keep your eye out for announcements on Spring events focused on self-care (for those of us that invest so much of ourselves in the kids we serve), as well as research and programs to support kids in bilingual homes. Dates and times to be announced on the Butler’s Pantry in later this year.

Open Hours

The Butler Center welcomes teachers, librarians, booksellers, parents, grandparents, caregivers and anyone interested in literature for young people. As the holiday season approaches, we will be closed following the Dominican University school closing calendar for the Christmas/New Year break, but otherwise open Monday – Thursday from noon-4 p.m., or by appointment with the curator; contact to make special arrangements or just to make sure we’re not on vacation.

The Center is a non-lending library but our staff is here to assist you in locating books that address specific themes, age groups, or reading levels.

The Butler Center is located in the Rebecca Crown Library, room 214, on Dominican’s main campus at 7900 W. Division Street in River Forest, Illinois. Directions and a campus map are available here. The Butler Center is administered by Dominican’s School of Information Studies and is generously supported by the Butler Family Foundation. We hope you’ll want to visit us, or join us for an event, and stay tuned for our news and upcoming events. Please contact me with any questions you have. I look forward to seeing you soon!

Happy Holidays,

Jen Clemons

Curator, Butler Children’s Literature Center
Dominican University SOIS

Raising Readers: A Review of Mousie, I Will Read to You


Mousie, I Will Read to You
Rachael Cole & Melissa Crowton
Schwartz & Wade Books, November 2018

Young Mousie grows up a reader in this new picture book written by Rachael Cole and illustrated by Melissa Crowton. Mama Mouse takes every opportunity to read to Mousie, from “Long before the words make sense,” to “In the middle of the night,” and “When morning comes.” In this way, Mousie goes from avid listener to a reader himself, choosing his own books and reading them by flashlight after bedtime. The cycle of reading continues as Mousie begins a family of his own.

Digital artwork in soft, primary colors centers on Mousie growing up with his mother and their life together. Small details like background art, book covers, and Mousie’s own toys add to the enjoyment of turning the page. Mousie, I Will Read to You ends with a page of tips for “Raising a Reader,” from Dr. Pamela High of the American Academy of Pediatrics, including ways to make reading together enjoyable and beneficial.

Where Do You Fit In? A Review of Click


Click by Kayla Miller
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, January 2019
Ages 10-13

In Kayla Miller’s Click, the variety show is coming up at school and outgoing Olive has not been asked to join a group. This leaves her feeling outcast and alone when she is unable to find her own “click.” Olive refuses her mom’s help to find a group, instead turning to her Aunt Molly. She decides the best choice is to become a host, the talent show announcer. In her words, “It would be a way that I could help all of my friends with their acts by introducing them” (p.132). This story was heartfelt and cute with bright colored pastel artwork which suggest that the tone is cheerful. The digital medium conveys the lively tone through expressive faces and flat simplistic backgrounds with bold highlight lines. The novel does a wonderful job touching on family relationships, specifically mother and daughter. At first, Olive’s mom oversteps her boundaries in trying to help her. By the end of the novel, a balance is achieved between allowing Olive to be independent and encouraging her to follow through. Olive also learns that, in friendships, growing apart and having different interests is okay. Her friends even encourage her in her choice to become a host. The novel has a solid plot portraying realistic issues for friendship and family. Miller shows these serious middle school themes in a lighthearted way that doesn’t take away from the tension.