Sunday, January 5, 2014

Budget numbers, Programming numbers, Circulation numbers, I haz them ALL (Part Two)

Now, on to program numbers; or, Was it Worth it? I have individual programs but mostly program series. I keep an average as well as individual numbers. So if we had really low attendance one month (flu, bad weather, general disinterest) and really high another month, it all averages out and I don't freak out (or that's the idea, I tend to stress out like crazy anyways.)

Total Programs: 358
Total Attendance: 11,559
Without outreach (see below) this was down 1,214 from 2012, but that is GOOD. I actually had a personal goal to decrease attendance in some areas because programs were getting out of control, especially some of our big summer programs and toddler storytimes. This year was much more manageable. However, the final number ended up MUCH higher (see outreach section below!)

Weekly Programs
  • Toddlers 'n' Books, 10am session: 35 sessions, 1239 attendance, average 35
  • Toddlers 'n' Books, 11am session: 35 sessions, 772 attendance, average 22
  • Books 'n' Babies: 31 sessions, 1137 attendance, average 37
  • Preschool Interactive: 35 sessions, 866 attendance, average 25
  • We Explore: 30 sessions, 1124 attendance, average 37
  • Lego Club: 18 sessions, 736 attendance, average 41
  • Messy Art Club: 15 sessions, 665 attendance, average 44
  • Mad Scientists Club: 3 sessions, 131 attendance, average 44
My outside person, Pattie, does Toddlers, Babies, and also a twice-monthly evening storytime and a monthly sort of playgroup thing, but the numbers for those don't really matter. Books 'n' Babies is seriously crowded and I'm trying to think of options to break it up a little next fall. I'm thinking if we shift our base morning storytime to 9:30am and have second sessions at 10:30am, I can do a Mother Goose on the Loose session myself at 9:30 on Wednesdays and then Preschool Interactive at 10:30, even though that gets close to lunch/naps, it's better than 11. Mad Scientists Club we just started in the fall, so there was only a few meetings. We Explore varies like crazy from 100+ when we have performers to lower storytime numbers. In the fall I stopped doing it weekly, so I probably won't keep it as an average next year but as separate programs.

Monthly, i.e. teen, Programs

Our cataloger, Lindsay, does Teens on Screen and I do Middle School Madness. She's gradually taking over more of the (hitherto nonexistent) teen programming and some of the collection development as well. That's what happens when you stand still too long in my vicinity. We also had a couple teen programs in the summer. We had a total of 17 teen programs for the year with 218 total attendance, which averages to 13 per program. Which is ok. (until I added in the middle school outreach visits, and then it average out more to 20, but it's not exact b/c I didn't keep the numbers quite right)

Other Programs
  • Dr. Seuss Celebration: 75
  • Clifford's Birthday Party: 250
    • This is an estimate. It's a program that basically takes over the entire library, so we have no real idea how many people came. We did have a school class from the special school, about 8 kids, join us. It was chaotic and crazy, which is why we only do this once a year!
  • Annual Spring Break T-Shirt Party: 65
  • Muffins with Mom: 40
  • Dance into Summer with Ella Bella Ballerina: 74
    • My Fancy Nancy party was climbing over 100 and I couldn't handle it, so I instituted registration and that cut the numbers down to a manageable amount.
  • Angry Birds party: 68
    • The Star Wars party the previous year was a traumatic FAIL. I did registration this year and this was soooo much better.
  • Book Experience: 43
    • Our new end of summer party. I really like the new model I came up with, not least because my aides planned the whole thing...
  • Santa's Kitchen: 77
  • Smitty and Mary G.: 100
    • A grade of kindergarteners, about 80 kids, were our main audience here.
  • Welty Environmental Center: Wiggly Worms: 60
    • This was our summer kick-off and Lindsay actually supervised, I was doing summer reading in the lobby.
  • Creepy Crawly Zoo: 105
    • This was a Storywagon program - they're selected by a committee and the consortium and go to all the libraries in the area.
  • Puppet Story Theater: 80
    • Storywagon
  • Duke Otherwise: 82
    • Storywagon - a local musician
  • Great Scott: 118
    • Storywagon - local magician
  • Nature's Niche: 100
    • This is paid for by the Friends and I book in conjunction with a neighboring library to get a discount. We've had Dino Tlachac for several years now and it's the highlight of the summer. Last year we had close to 200 people, so this year I really strongly emphasized that this is for older kids, like 6+, and the numbers, thankfully, dropped a little. I am really picky about live animals in programs and it took me a while to find one that I feel is ethical and responsible - Nature's Niche has animals for education, but they're also a rehabilitation center and all the animals are rescued or can't be returned to the wild for some reason.
  • Kohls Wild Theater: 130
    • All the 4k classes from our biggest preschool come to this, as well as other attendees, so it always pulls in a big crowd. And it's free!
  • Puppet Story Theater: 140
    • I had all the kindergarteners from the closest elementary school plus a LOT of other people. We liked this program so much in the summer that I decided to use a little extra grant money I had to bring them back in the winter!
Stealth Programs
  • 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten
    • I gave out 258 folders for 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten. This isn't an exact number, since I gave out several big stacks to schools, but close.
    • Participants read 15,480 books (which accounts for our high picture book circulation!)
  • Stuffed Animal Sleepover
    • 42 people participated by dropping off their animals. I learned after the first year to not take any giant animals and photograph in groups!
  • SRP: Rubber Ducky Readers
    • 42 participants, which fell a little short of my hoped-for 50 this first year, but I was still getting people meandering back in the fall to pick up their board book and I have high hopes for next summer, when more people know about the program.
  • SRP: Super Readers
    • 157 participants, which was good, although I estimated 200. I'm not sure if I'll be able to do this program this coming summer or not, since it looks like I won't have enough pass/ticket type prizes.
  • SRP (regular summer reading program)
    • 470 participants. The last year I did registration I had 900, so every year is always a bit of a let-down since I only count actual participation now, but I am determined to get this number up!
    • We did have 55 teens, which is a record high for us - and I think that's because I let middle schoolers move over from the younger program to the teen program if they wanted, which most of them did.
  • Learning Curve: 29 programs
    • This is my most "traditional" outreach. I do a storytime for each of the three 4K classrooms once a month and also select and bring baskets of books for the teachers to use in their classrooms. In addition to my regular visits during the school year, I did two summer visits for the summer care kids, about 15 kids ages 3 to 8. They were my test site for the daycare summer reading program I put together.
  • Tibbets Elementary School: 22 programs
    • Tibbets is one of our three elementary schools that is the farthest outside of town - just like Learning Curve. In 2012 I put together a monthly visit with one kindergarten teacher and in the fall of 2013 I figured out how to adjust my schedule so I could do all three kindergarten classes. I do a storytime for them and it's fun to do older kids for a change. Right before summer, I visit the whole school to promote summer reading - each grade gets about 15-20 minutes of high-energy booktalking and summer reading promotion, which is a total of about 450 kids. I count each grade as a program, because I have to do a quick-change of all the books and promotions for each grade.
  • Jackson Elementary School: 12 programs
    • Jackson does the most walk-overs b/c they're closest. I had their kindergartens at two performances this year, which was great! I only visit the school for kindergarten through fourth grade and then all the fifth grades come and visit me. They have a scavenger hunt, booktalks, program promotion, and my patented 3-part lecture on "Library Policies and Yes We Do Enforce Them" "Everyone has to Compromise So We All Enjoy the Library" and "How not to have the Police Called on You When Hanging out at the Library During Middle School". I also have the younger grades come for visits, sometimes to check books out, and we are a stop on the 2nd grade community walk. This year I also got the 5th graders to start a monthly (hopefully) visit to check out books in the genre they're studying.
  • 6th grade: 10 programs
    • We have one middle school. 6th grade is divided into two "teams" of approximately 100 kids each. At the beginning of the year I went to visit them, and again pre-summer, but by the fall they were coming to visit me, which was awesome, since visits to the school usually involved lugging all my crates of books over there, set up, meet one or two classes of kids, move all the books, set up again, 100 kids for 20 minutes, move all the books, set up again, wait an hour, etc.
  • West Side Elementary School: 6 programs
    • This is the school I do the least with, even though it's really not much farther than Jackson. Right now they just get my pre-summer visits. I am planning to Change All That this spring and get the kindergarteners over for a program and maybe the 5th graders!
  • Summer School: 5 programs
    • This is the one that started it all, that got me asking my director to please let me count off-site outreach storytimes! I do five back-to-back storytimes for the kids going into kindergarten. It's fun and awesome and hot and exhausting and I always forget to bring water and cough drops!
  • Step Ahead: 4 programs
    • I started my remote collection service at this school, taking them monthly baskets of books (although they mostly come get them on their own now - their teachers are big library users and one is actually president of the board this year!). Every April, they bring all the preschool and 4k classes to visit the library and have a tour and storytime. This is pretty busy and for some reason I have been sick through it for the last two years. Oh well, the kids enjoy it. They also brought some 4k classes over to join in Preschool Interactive in the fall, but that didn't really work out.
  • Lakeland School: 2 programs
    • This is the county's special education school. What I do for them varies wildly, depending on the age/ability level of the kids involved, but usually I do some kind of storytime and craft and maybe a little tour if they're up for it. Some years I've had a regular monthly visit, but the class that normally visits wasn't able to work it into their schedule and in the fall their teacher said they weren't quite ready for a public field trip. Hoping they come in the spring! The little I've been able to do with them has had some results - several caregivers now bring the kids to the library on their own, regularly, which is awesome.
  • Headstart: 1 program
    • With the advent of 4K our local headstart program has shrunk mostly to birth through three, so Pattie usually does outreach with them. However, I occasionally add them in to a storytime or have them meet for lunch in the Storyroom.
A couple years ago, after doing yet another five storytimes back to back for the summer school pre-kindergarteners, I begged my director to let me count outreach storytimes, even if they weren't on-site and she said yes! Fast forward to this year and I listened to an awesome webinar about data and advocacy with our state consultant...and found out that I should have been counting ALL outreach, including school visits, tours, etc. for the annual report! I wasn't the only one either - apparently not many of us read the definition section of the state annual report (-:) I called her up afterwards to confirm this amazing information and, well, it's awesome. I figured out how to go back and add in those numbers for this year and well, let's just say I'm pretty confident in still having the highest program attendance of my consortium this year (-:) I put together a kind of comprehensive plan for future outreach and we'll see how long that lasts...You can see it here.


Abby said...

For your in-house program numbers, is that the number of kids you had or the number of people (including parents, etc.)? I love seeing your stats! I'm putting together our annual report this week, so I'll try to blog about our numbers soon!

Jennifer said...

Number of people total - our statistics for the annual report include adults so I've never bothered trying to get separate numbers. However, I can usually estimate it - we generally have large families so the average attendance is 1 adult per 3 children, and more at after school clubs where a lot of kids get dropped off or come with friends.