Are You Ready To Liven Up Your Library?

Liven Up Your Library

Welcome to “Ask the Tech Coach,” a podcast for Instructional Coaches and Technology Integration Specialists.

In this episode of “Ask the Tech Coach,” Jeff sits down with ISTE Authors Julia Torres and Valerie Tagoe to discuss the state of the Library Media Center and Library Media Specialist and the value they bring to our staff and students each day.

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About our Guests:

Julia Torres

Julia E. Torres (@juliaerin80) is a language arts teacher and librarian in Denver, Colorado. An advocate for all students and public education, Torres is a frequent conference and event speaker, and facilitates workshops and professional conversations about equity, anti-bias/anti-racist education, culturally sustaining pedagogies and literacy in the digital age. She is a current member of the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award Committee, a 2020 Library Journal Mover and Shaker, and a past president of the Colorado Language Arts Society (a regional affiliate of the National Council of Teachers of English). She holds a master’s of education in secondary education curriculum and instruction from the University of Phoenix, a master’s in creative writing from Regis University and a master's in library and information science from the University of Denver (2023).

Social Links:

Valerie Tagoe

Valerie Tagoe is a high school librarian in Texas. She’s a winner of the S. Janice Kee Award from Texas Woman’s University, and a past president of the Dallas Association of School Librarians. Currently, she’s a member of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) Board of Directors. In addition to serving on the board, Tagoe is also active in the Texas Library Association (TLA) as a member of its Legislative Committee. She holds a Bachelor’s in French, with a Minor in History, from the University of Oklahoma; a Master’s of Bilingual Education from Southern Methodist University; and an MLS from Texas Woman's University.

Social Links

  • @bookmarksllc

About the Book

Learn how librarians can positively effect change in areas like digital equity and inclusiveness, while creating powerful programming for middle and high school students.

Developing programs for learners can be an ongoing challenge for librarians – especially first-year librarians. Current books on the topic primarily focus on makerspaces or read alouds, and are aimed at elementary school grades, with a surface-level approach. This book addresses deeper issues that librarians face, while illustrating how to serve teens and tweens specifically by offering programming relevant to their lives.

The authors offer practical ideas for developing effective programming through collaborating with the community to develop and implement programs, connecting programs to ISTE Standards and curriculum, and addressing curricular and socio-emotional needs. They also share practical advice on budgeting and funding to support programs, scheduling, maximizing the use of technology to aid in programming and much more. The book also explores ways library programs can have a positive impact on school culture, such as addressing the digital divide, inclusion and cultural relevance.

This book:

  • Discusses why programming is critical and covers how to develop library programs that are inclusive, culturally relevant and beneficial for students transitioning from high school to college.
  • Shows how library programming aligns with American Association of School Librarians (AASL), Future Ready Librarians framework and the ISTE Standards.
  • Provides checklists and templates to help readers develop their own programming ideas and lesson plans.
  • Offers guidance on building consensus from various stakeholders and involving students, faculty and community in the development of programs.
  • Shares stories from librarians in K-12 and higher education, addressing how they design their programs and offer career and educational paths for students.

Programming for teens and young adults is a catalyst for learning and exploration. The activities and learning experiences shared in this book will empower librarians and deepen student learning.

About ISTE

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is home to a passionate community of global educators who believe in the power of technology to transform teaching and learning, accelerate innovation and solve tough problems in education. ISTE inspires the creation of solutions and connections that improve opportunities for all learners by delivering: practical guidance, evidence-based professional learning, virtual networks, thought-provoking events and the ISTE Standards. ISTE is also the leading publisher of books focused on technology in education. For more information or to become an ISTE member, visit Subscribe to ISTE’s YouTube channel and connect with ISTE on Twitter or Facebook.


ISTE books and jump-start guides address both established and emerging industry topics, and are aligned with the ISTE Standards, providing clear, practical guidance to help educators meet the standards. Whether you’re a classroom teacher, librarian, district leader or teacher educator, ISTE books are your answer to effective districtwide PD and professional learning to meet your goals or tech initiatives.

Become An ISTE Books Insider!

Subscribe to the ISTE Books Update newsletter for exclusive savings and updates on books, author events and more.

In this episode, we mentioned the following resources:

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About the author, Jeffrey Bradbury

Jeff Bradbury, creator of TeacherCast, and father of the famous @EduTriplets Thanks for checking out TeacherCast today. Please take a moment to find me on all of my Social Media channels!