The Short/Semi-Professional Version
Jessica is a former teacher turned Youth Services Librarian. She has served as an ALA Student Chapter President, leading Emporia State University to their first Student Chapter of the Year Award. Since graduating from library school, she has worked in a variety of libraries in the Denver metro area. Jessica has also served as the Training and Advocacy Chair for Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy (CLEL), spearheading the collaborative ALSC/CLEL Virtual Storytime Services Guide and launching CLEL’s first virtual professional development opportunities for members.
Professionally, Jessica is known for advocating for accessibility and giving storytime flannels early math makeovers. Her favorite things include tea, mountain hikes and middle grade fiction. Jessica is one of the 26% of adults in the United States with a disability.
The Long/More Personal Version
Hi there! I’m Jessica, not Beaker. I’m a book-loving, late-night blogging former teacher turned library lady. I spent most of my teacher time in preschool and kindergarten. Back then my favorite things included teaching young children how to read and write, STEAM, empowering caregivers, and most of all… reading aloud! Then I found out there’s a whole different field that gets to do just that on a community-wide scale. I was out. Or in, depending on your perspective. 🙂
Since starting my library journey in 2016, I’ve finished my MLS and worked with three different public library systems in the Denver Metro area. I’m an Emporia State University SLIM alum – and if you are too, let’s connect through the Alumni Facebook Group! Along the way I’ve been a library page, a volunteer preschool storyteller, a floor associate, a storytime specialist, a youth and family services librarian and an early literacy department lead.
Oh, and speaking of employers past and present, the thoughts and opinions expressed on this blog are my own.
In his 1997 Emmy Acceptance Speech, Mr. Rogers said:
“All of us have special ones who have loved us into being. Would you just take along with me ten seconds to think of the people who have helped you become who you are? Those who have cared about you and wanted what was best for you in life. Ten seconds of silence.”
In my ten seconds I can think of many amazing library people who’ve transformed my life personally and professionally. I’m blessed beyond measure to have spent my most formative years as a new professional with mentors such as Melissa Depper of Mel’s Desk and Miss Mary Liberry.
My biggest professional interests include…
- disability and accessibility
- equity and inclusion
- early literacy
- early math
- school outreach
On this blog I mostly write about storytimes and program plans, but occasionally share my thoughts on these other subjects. In general, I do most of my booktalking on Instagram and most of my shouting on Twitter.
Thanks for visiting!
4 thoughts on “About Me”
Hi Jessica, I’m not sure if we’ve met or not but your name is super familiar. I just came here from the GRT webinar where you posted your link. Excited to check out your math info! If you’re on Instagram, I have a library page @wordswithalice, although I haven’t posted in minute. I’m Leigh Ramey from Westminster Public Library 🙂
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Hey Leigh! Your name is super familiar too, I feel like we must have met sometime in our little CO corner of library land. Thank you for stopping by the blog!
Guess what! I managed to find a new job despite this damn pandemic, and will soon be joining you in the great state of Colorado! (But in Pueblo, not Denver). It’s a HUGE move and change for me, so I’m a bit anxious, but looking forward to exploring the west. I’ve already joined CLEL and signed up for the conference to get a jump start on acquainting myself with Colorado libraries and others interested in youth services.
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For real?! I am so excited! Welcome! Can’t wait to see you at CLEL and around CO library land in the future. 😁