Children's Services Division


The specific goals and objectives of this division shall be to determine and meet the needs of Michigan librarians who work with and promote library services to the children, their parents, and caregivers in the State of Michigan.

Raise the Roof: Spring Institute 2008

Register for 2008 Spring Institute!  SI will be May 7-9, 2008 at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids. Join us at the CSD/TSD business meeting at 5:15pm on Wednesday, May 7 to discuss the MLA restructuring process and future volunteer opportunities. 

The Mitten Award


The Children's Services Division of the Michigan Library Association (MLA) is pleased to announce that RULES by Cynthia Lord, published by Scholastic Press, is the winner of the 2006 Mitten Award.

RULES is a funny, poignant, thoughtful look at sibling relationships and the intrinsic value of a person. Twelve-year-old Catherine has created a list of rules to help her younger brother, David, navigate the world.
David has autism, and Catherine experiences a range of emotions with him, from frustration to protectiveness to a wry appreciation for his point of view. A typical middle-grade girl, Catherine also explores the rules of friendship in her own life, with  Kristi, the new girl she'd like to impress, and Jason, a non-verbal paraplegic young man who shares her sense of humor. Sensitive, realistic, and humorous, this first novel by Cynthia Lord is great for discussion.

RULES won a Newbery Honor Medal and the Schneider Family Book Award, as well as the MLA Mitten Award, and is an American Library Association Notable Children's Book. This is Cynthia Lord's first novel. Lord will accept her award at the Michigan Library Association's Spring Institute conference, to be held May 7-9, 2008 in Grand Rapids, MI.

Three honor titles were selected by the 2006 Mitten Award committee: THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE by Kate DiCamillo (published by Candlewick Press), CLEMENTINE by Sara Pennypacker (published by Hyperion Books for Children), and COUNTING ON GRACE by Elizabeth Winthrop (published by Wendy Lamb Books).

The mission for the Mitten Award is to recognize one children's book published in the United States within the calendar year that has captured the attention of the children's librarians throughout the State of Michigan for its ability to communicate through literature to an intended audience. A committee, consisting of Children's Librarians from all over Michigan, meets several times during the year to determine the winner.

Click here to view the list of Mitten Award winners and honor books. 


Award of Merit 

This annual award recognizes a member of the Michigan Library Association's Children's Services Division who has made an outstanding contribution to library service to children in a Michigan community.   

Candidates must meet the minimum qualifications:

1. Candidates must have a degree in library or information science.
2. Candidates must be nominated by a member/s of the Michigan Library Association.
3. Candidates must have at least three years experience as a professional librarian.
4. Candidates must have been instrumental in providing improved library service in the field of children's librarianship by performing one or more of the following: 

  • Community service exemplifying dedication to bringing children and literature together through innovative programming or ideas or service to community organizations.
  • Contributions to professionalism in the field of children's librarianship through workshops, committee services, or research.

    The 2008 Award of Merit recipient will be announced at the Wednesday, May 7
    Spring Institute awards dinner.