About Joe Marcantonio

I'm a Teen Librarian since 2006 earning my degree from Dominican University. I currently hold the Teen Place Manager position at Schaumburg Township Library District.

April 11, 2019 Meeting

Location: Wheaton Public Library

YASF Board

  • New Board
    • Kylie – Social Media
    • Quinn – Tournament
    • Izabel – Member at Large
    • Cyndi – Liaison to Awards Committee
  • Proposed Meeting Schedule
    • January – Open board meeting
      • Prep for professional development, ILA brainstorming, tournament of books title selection
    • February – Professional Development & ILA brainstorming
    • April – Open board meeting
      • Evaluate professional development, start networking meetup & ILA planning, ToB status report, next manager/board
    • May – Professional Development – RA/Tournament of Books
    • August – Networking Meetup
    • September – Open board meeting
      • ILA final planning (session intros & live-tweeting, pub stroll) new manager & board selection, networking meetup eval
    • October – ILA annual conference
    • November – Open board meeting
      • ILA evals, new board/managers
  • Incoming Manager
    • Voting over summer
      • Interested persons will be identified on Google Form, must have attended 75% of meetings in last year
    • Decision by board in September, and notification of new incoming manager
    • Public announcement at ILA
    • ILA
      • Proposals
        • UnConference
        • So You Wanna Do a Job Fair?
        • Lizzy Appleby LGBTQ
        • Teen Alt-RA
        • Mentorship: Growing Next Gen Librarians
        • Dear Teen Librarian Panel
        • Unconventional Lit Program
        • New in Nonfiction for Teens
      • Post Presentation Evaluation Form
        • Change “How many staff members exclusively or primarily serve teens in your library?” to “What is your role?” or “Who do you serve?”  
        • “Which population in the library would this program apply to?”
        • Change “What YA-focused would you like to see covered in future programs?” to add “or changed, updated, repeated”
        • Add email address to Evaluation? To Google form?






      • YASF Meeting
        • At ILA after Unconference
    • Young Adult Librarian of the Year Award
    • C2E2 Recap
      • Graphic Novel Reorganization Rachael/Quinn/Lisa
      • Alt-RA Cyndi
      • Graphic Novel Roundtable: “Comic Convert” – Izabel
      • Graphic Memoirs Teachers Panel – Izabel
    • IYSI Recap
      • “So You Wanna Do a Job Fair?’ – Becky
    • Tournament of Books (Rachel/Quinn)
      • Living document that will change
      • One day we’ll know what we’re doing…one day.
      • Round 3 up
      • Last day to vote today (April 11)
      • Voting for 2019 on FB
      • Guidelines helpful
  • Updates
    • iRead (Kylie)
      • Editing 2020 resource guide
      • New YA Forum Liaison needed (2 year commitment on iREAD)  
    • Youth Services Forum
      • Partner for unconference
      • May 10th next meeting
      • Planning Story and Spirits/Author Breakfast for ILA
    • Social Media (Kylie)
      • Facebook 190 10 new
      • Twitter 78 followers
      • Google Group
      • Kylie trying to develop content guide
      • Let Kylie kpeters@gpld.org  know about any programs, successes, publications, or reviews
  • Future Professional Development
  • Networking Event – August
    • Combining with YALD, partner with game shop?
  • Open Discussion


Lisa, Evan, Cyndi H, Becky, Nicole, Courtney, Joe, Kylie, Quinn, Izabel, Abby, Annie, Rachael, Yvette, Megan, Cindy S

Upcoming Meeting Dates and Locations

  • September 12, 2019 – Wilmette Public Library
  • November 7, 2019 – Oak Lawn Public Library
  • January Open Board Meeting – Board decision TBD
  • February 13, 2020 – Schaumburg Township District Library
  • April 9, 2020 – Open Board Meeting TBD
  • May 2020 – Networking/RA LIt Focused – Tournament of Books unveiling

YASF Meeting Minutes 2.14.19

Location: Arlington Heights Memorial Library

Quinn S, Krista H, Nicole M, Izabel G, Megan Y, Daniel T, Yvette G, Lisa B, Joe M, Evan M, Abigail W, Andrea J, Kylie P, Lauren B
Virtual: Cyndi R, Rachael B

I. YASF Bylaws

II. YASF Board

  1. Interim Board
    1. Needed for set up official board.
    2. Set up of defined roles for positions.
      1. Positions: Tournament of Books, Social Media, Networking Events, Managers (incoming, current, outgoing), Board Liaison

III. Restructure Meetings

  1. Restructuring board meetings to handle business/admin side and YASF meetings will be for networking.

IV. ILA Conference 2019: Shift: Where Will You Grow?

  1. Proposals Due: March 15th
  2. Unconference Proposal
    1. Tuesday afternoon (as per Cyndi)
    2. YASF members to host tables
      1. Facilitate conversation about topics selected day of conference.
      2. Demo tables – tech, passive programming
  3. Requested Topics
    1. Management
      1. Transitioning from YA/YS to management roles
    2. Outreach (nonschool)
      1. Elizabeth Lynch @ Addison
    3. RA/Book Talks/Reading without Book Clubs (presented at YALSA)
    4. Evaluating learning (goals for paraprofessionals) evaluating programming (outcomes – setting goals and reaching them) -Rachael B
    5. Growing Our Own Profession
    6. Behavior/De-escalation resolutions
      1. Restorative Justice for Teens – done at Skokie and Oak Park
    7. STEM
    8. Drunk Book Talking @ Pub Crawl??
    9. Teen Troubleshooting (Rachael, Lisa, Yvette, and Andrea)
    10. Mental Health
      1. More like last year’s, focus on identifying and helping teens with mental health issues.
    11. Social Media
    12. Disabilities/Learning Differences

V. Tournament of Books (Rachel)

  1. Round one all on time. 30 people votes. People like the guidelines, more usable and better for reviewers. Send feedback to Quinn.

VI. Updates

  1. iRead
    1. Submissions for “Dig Deeper” need crafts, decorations.
  2. Youth Services Forum

VII. YASF Social Media

  1. Google Groups – 12 new conversations and 1 new member
  2. Blog – Updated for ease of navigation
  3. Facebook
  4. Twitter

VIII. Future Professional Development

  1. IYSI Conference – March 21-22, Bloomington
  2. C2E2 2019 – March 22 – 24
    1. “Being a Comic Convert” by Izabel, Roundtable looking for volunteers
    2. “Get It Started” keeping GN collections browsable
  3. Reaching Forward 2019 – May 3
    1. “Getting’ Jiggy with Kits” – Megan
  4. Chi-Teen Lit Fest
    1. “By teens for teens” – poetry, writing workshops, author talks and Q&A sessions.

Upcoming Meetings

April 11, 2019 – Wheaton Public Library
September 12, 2019 – Wilmette Public Library
November 7, 2019 – Oak Lawn Public Library

February 13, 2020 – Schaumburg Township District Library

YASF Meeting Minutes 11.08.18

Date: November 8, 2018
Location: Berwyn Public Library
Host: Quinn Stitt


  • In person: Izabel Gronski, Lisa Barefield, Quinn Stitt, Evan Mather, Becca Boland, Joe Marcantonio, Nina, Haley Frailey, Nicole Mills, Cyndi Hamann, Lauren, Rachael Bild, Melissa Martinez
  • Online: Rachel Stolle, Elizabeth, Cyndi Robinson, Krista Hutley

ILA Wrap Up

  • Live Tweeting
    • Great live tweeters from YASF
    • Hashtag worked, easy to follow for those not in attendance
    • Repeat for next year
  • Unconference 2019
    • Submission form open in December
      • Loop Cyndi in on submission before submitting
    • Partner with YSF
      • Establish contact specifically for Unconference
  • Feedback
    • Program survey/evaluations forthcoming
    • Director in attendance impressed with YA offerings.
    • Fewer people filling out full evaluations.
      • Cyndi suggests promoting the app to let people evaluate immediately.
      • Last slide at ILA presentations with survey/app info given to presenters.
      • Alerts did not work on app.
      • Did YASF responses eat from the app responses?
        • Paper vs app, paper is more accountable.
      • Survey results
        • Wants:
          • How to run a successful book club
          • readers advisory
          • outreach
          • conflict resolution
          • mental health and wellness
          • STEM on a budget,
          • budget conscious programming (work into all presentations)
          • outreach that isn’t school related
          • Diversity
          • how do I get them in the door and how to keep them
          • transitions from youth to teen and teen to adult
          • How to present*
        • Are people missing YA sessions or are the sessions causing more interest in same topics?
  • Ideas for 2019 (Tinley Park)
    • * How to present.
      • Mentorship through YASF
        • Seek first time presenters and see if they want help
        • ILA added a resource page
        • 2019 ILA programming conference on board
        • LACONI & REcharge looped in to help
      • Cover the whole process from proposal
        • Add to unconference or separate proposal?
  • Archive the slides and link to handouts/presentations/poster sessions on ILA website
    • make a post with the links to the presentations on social media


  • Attended: Becca, Quinn, Nicole, Cindy
  • Presented: Cindy – Alt-RA
  • Feedback
    • Cindy’s was best session of conference
    • Not as well organized as ILA

IYSI (March 21 & 22) and Reaching Forward (May 3)

  • Proposals submissions
    • Cindy – Alt RA, Reaching Forward
    • Melissa – RA, IYSI
    • Lisa – Video production, IYSI


  • Needs updating with relevant info/content i.e. meeting minutes, tournament of books.
    • Update volunteers: Rachel and Quin
    • Content:
      • Only used for tournament of books?
      • Add contact info
      • Add meeting info
      • ILA update calendar
      • Get rid of blog content and make it a static website
      • Reminders of upcoming events and deadlines i.e. ILA proposals due

YASF Board

  • Management Team (Lisa, Evan, and Joe) to create
  • Tasks
    • Creates a procedure guide/manual for YASF
    • Mission statement/goals/objectives (used to be a binder)
  • Considerations
    • Management team plans board’s direction
    • Write bylaws (YSF bylaws for reference)
    • Voting requirements for board.
    • YASF Committees i.e. Tournament of books, social media

Tournament of Books – Rachel, Quinn, Cindy

  • Committee to write out formal instructions & procedures
    • Possible voting change
    • Will meet in person after November meeting
    • Mary’s Monster will be considered
  • Will need an additional librarians to help with voting/whittling down of list
  • Keep adding books to pinned FB post on YASF
    • If not on FB send your recommendations to Lisa
  • Sign up sheet for those interested in selection of books to be sent

Networking Meet-up

  • December? Nope.
  • March? Most likely, will discuss


  • iRead (Donna) – submit to the resource guide – need teen/youth programs
  • YSF Updates – collecting ideas, discussed ILA, will have tables at IYSI and RF
  • Social Media
  • Facebook (Becca) – 15 new members for FB
    • engagement: Wednesdays are busiest, 149 active members! Saturday/Sunday least busy
  • Twitter (Evan) – 57 followers all because of ILA
  • Google Group (Megan) – 3 new members, 2 new conversations
    • add more info, Joe will add meeting dates.

Other Business/Discussion

  • Grants – Becca and Rachel will meet for RAILS grant
  • Professional Development Meetings – Helping people get to C2E2 and others.
    • C2E2 professional registration is open. Rachael Bild looking to partner with someone on reorganizing collection to save time of the reader at C2E2.
    • Start with one meeting and one topic and evaluate.
      • Topic ideas: Gaming,
      • Go to other forums to recruit for presentations
  • Statewide standards? Hearing about them at conference for feedback.
  • Unconference
    • cut off all YA/Youth programming during that time
    • Bring a full plan to YASF at February meeting.

Upcoming Meetings

  • February 14, 2019 – Arlington Heights Memorial Library
  • April 11, 2019 – Wheaton Public Library
  • September 12, 2019 – Wilmette Public Library
  • November 7th*, 2019 – Oak Lawn Public Library
    • *date changed


Books to programs to books

Why fight it?  Books are libraries brand.  When programming, just go with it.

Programming revolving around books isn’t a new idea.  We’ve been doing it for years, they’re called book discussions.  Take it a step further by turning the content of a book into your program.  The following is a list of books and ideas for programming that go with it.  This list is in no way comprehensive as there is no limit to a librarian’s creativity.

100 Most Disgusting Things on the Planet (Claybourne)

Having trouble getting the boys into the library…fret no more!  The grosser the program the crazier the boys go for it. The book is divided into two sections: disgusting nature and disgusting humans.  Many of the topics from the disgusting nature section can be seen in nature documentaries and online videos.  Have a couple videos queued for display.  For instance the Tarantula Hawk Wasp is shown in this video attacking a tarantula, paralyzing it and dragging it into her hole where she will lay her eggs on it allowing her babies a fresh food supply when they hatch.  The spider is alive the whole time.  My favorite chapter in the disgusting humans section is on “Civet Coffee” (Kopi Luwak) which is made from the coffee beans of the fruit that the Civet Cat eats.  After passing the coffee beans they are collected and ground into coffee at the price of $160 a pound or up to $80 a cup in a cafe.  Ahh, to be rich and drink sh…  Do you know where your coffee comes from?

Bro-Jitsu: The Martial Art of the Sibling Smackdown (Wilson)

OK, so this program might be dangerous.  Correction, this program WILL be dangerous.  Packed with 126 attack, defense, counter-measures, and counter-counter measures, Bro-Jitsu is a survival guide for growing up a sibling.  Treat this class like you would a beginner Yoga class.  Make sure that each participant has their own space (you know, to avoid getting blood on the carpet).  Run them through some of the more fun moves and then release them upon their unsuspecting families.

miniweapons2There are cool books to get idea for programming and then there are awesome books that you just rip-off wholesale and do an entire years worth of programs.  The Mini-Weapons of Mass Destruction is that series.  Our library had a huge hit with our Bad Boys Crafting Club in which we armed the youth of our town and send them on their way.  The projects range from catapults (from Popsicle sticks, rubber bands, and clothes pins) to double-barrel rubber band shooters. After the teens have made the project set up an area with targets for shooting practice.  Be warned that some of these weapons work extremely well.

Young Adult Librarian of the Year Award

Awards season is fast approaching! The Newbery, The Printz, the Oscars, and joining those auspicious ranks comes the Illinois Library Association’s Young Adult Librarian of the Year Award! You have not heard of this award? Well, that is not surprising as this year is the inaugural year. This is the very first time you can honor a Young Adult Librarian with an award from the Illinois Library Association. Don’t miss this opportunity to show your appreciation for the dedicated Young Adult Librarian in your life!

To nominate a Young Adult Librarian for the Young Adult Librarian of the Year Award, visit the ILA Website and click on Awards, or simply follow this link:

Young Adult Librarian of the Year Award

All you need to nominate someone is letters of reference and a one-page summary about why you think the person you are nominating deserves this award.  Award recipients will receive a $200 financial award and a certificate.

Books to Pimp for Teen Tech Week

Back in the day before I earned my MLIS and before I even had a library career I had a LTA class on Readers’ Advisory.  The first day of class the instructor informed us that “when doing Readers Advisory you are not so much advising the reader as you are pimping the books”.  She went on to refer to her job as a “Book Pimp” (let the hilarious mental images ensue).  Now, many years later, using her terminology I give you: “Books to Pimp for Teen Tech Week”.  Going with their theme of “Mix & Mash” this post represents both fiction and non-fiction books that involve teens and technology.  Enjoy!

Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card

Everyone should know this book, but fortunately for us new patrons are being born everyday and they have no idea about this magnificent, thought-provoking series.

Ender Wiggin is a third born child.  This is not unusual now but in the future when population is tightly controlled Ender is special.  Also, Ender at the age of 6 is still being monitored by the government.  Then comes the day that Ender’s parent fear most.  He has been chosen for Battle School (to his older brother’s horror), he is to become a solider and protect the world from the “bugs”.  Seventy years ago the bugs attacked the humans killing us without mercy, until a battle in which the bugs retreated and were never heard from again.

Ender is the youngest and smallest at battle school but it quickly becomes apparent that he is one of the best the school has ever seen.  There is talk by those in power that Ender may be the one to save us from the bugs again, except this time we are bringing the fight to them.

This book has attained classic status in the science fiction and young adult realms due to it’s engaging story and believable characters.  Orson Scott Card has created a world around Ender’s life and the series continues with Ender’s Shadow.  Listening to the audio-book  has it’s perks also (Harlan Ellison makes a guest appearance).

O’Reilly’s Brain-Friendly Guides

Greatest. Guides. EVER! These books are excellent beginner guides to web design, HTML, App Design, Algebra, Physics, and so on.  They are written in an easily digested format and interject humor where ever possible.  They are illustrated and show easy step-by-step instructions.  A very approachable text for teens with a high interest in technology and it’s applications.

Uglies – Scott Westerfeld

Tally Youngblood is going to turn sixteen and all her ugly little problems will go away. Her ugly face, gone. Her ugly body, gone. Her ugly mind, gone especially. When Tally turns sixteen she will be able to get the operation to correct every physical flaw she has. When her best friend turns sixteen and moves to New Pretty Town she figures her life is over until she becomes pretty. That is when she meets Shay who is drastically different than anyone Tally ever met. For starters she doesn’t want to become pretty which the girls will soon find out isn’t really a choice. Follow Tally on this amazing roller coaster of a novel, great for anyone in middle school and up.

The Accidental Billionaires – Ben Mezrich

This book is not a particularly hard sell.  As the inspiration for the movie The Social Network this is the story of Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg.  A billionaire before the age of 25 a concept that will not be lost on teens, “A million dollars isn’t cool, you know what’s cool?  A billion dollars”.  This book is not without controversy though, slammed critically for the authors inability to get an interview with Zuckerberg, his liberal tweaking of the dialogue, and using Zuckerberg’s enemies for his primary source material.  All that aside the book is entertaining, fast-paced, and will be gobbled up high school teens.

Spacer and Rat – Margaret Bechard

Jack (Spacer) is a teen that has spent his entire life in space.  He and the rest of the residents of the Freedom Station refer to the earth dwellers as “rats” due to their destruction of their planet.  Then Kit (Rat) is abandoned by her father on the Freedom Station with her sentient robot, Waldo.  The robot is illegal technology that leads Jack and Kit into more trouble than they bargained for.  By the end Jack and Kit come to an understanding and both have challenged their previously held beliefs.


Teen Cooking: Microwaves and Mugs

Teens love food.  Yes, we all know that but, did you also know that they are quite capable of cooking for themselves…either did their parents.  Cooking programs for teens can be wildly popular as long as you promise them samples at the end.  The problem with cooking programs is the cooking, unless you have a huge staff lounge that doubles as a meeting room (in which case carry on Rick Bayless Public Library).

In a previous post,Teen Programming with Food, we provided fun desserts to make that require no cooking.  This time we’ll explore some awesome options for cooking with that jack-of-all-trades, the microwave.  If your library’s microwave (and I know you have one) cannot be moved into your meeting space, then ask around and I’m willing to bet that someone has one collecting dust in their garage.  Below you’ll find some great microwave recipes that you can make with/for your teens.

Mexi-licious Egg Mug (from Hungry Girl)


  • 2 tbsp. chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup fat-free liquid egg substitute (like Egg Beaters Original)
  • 1/4 cup fat-free refried beans
  • 2 tbsp. canned diced green chilies (not drained)
  • One 6-inch corn tortilla, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 wedge The Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss cheese
  • Optional topping: fat-free sour cream


  • Spray a large microwave-safe mug with nonstick spray. Add onion and microwave for 1 minute, until slightly softened and warm.
  • Pat dry to remove excess moisture. Add egg substitute and gently stir. Microwave for 1 minute.
  • Gently stir. Microwave for 30 seconds, until scramble is mostly set.
  • Gently stir in beans, chilies, tortilla, and cheese wedge, breaking cheese into pieces as you add it.
  • Microwave for about 45 seconds, until hot. Gently stir and, if you like, top with sour cream. Enjoy!



Microwave Cake in a Mug


  • 1 large coffee mug
  • 4 tablespoons plain flour (do not use self-rising)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
  • Small splash of vanilla
  • chocolate syrup (optional)
  • whipped topping (optional)


  • Add dry ingredients to mug, & mix well .
  • Add egg & mix thoroughly.
  • Pour in the milk and oil and mix well.
  • Add chocolate chips (if using), vanilla, mix again.
  • Set mug in the microwave & cook for 2½ to 3 min (1,000 watts microwave). Cake will rise over the top of the mug.
  • Remove from microwave and allow cake to cool a little, then tip out onto a plate, or leave in mug.
  • Drizzle with chocolate syrup and top with whipped topping, if desired!