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Friday, May 27, 2011

May 26: Catholic Social Services outreach program

I learned to play bloskus game with children at the Catholic Social Services office (CSS).  The trick is to start with larger pieces and connect the corners. I listened to the case worker who takes of autistic children. The person explained to me that it is important to follow through with child.

I chated with a lady from Poland. A parent had just come back from Abu Dhabi and she was sharing her observations and thoughts. She told me that business and residential houses were in the same place, the traffic was 24/7, the Cornish waterfront was close to her house and she could hear the ocean. The visit made her understand the feelings and the capacity of newcomers to adapt to change.

I made many friends and invited them to visit the library.  I look forward to the working party on June 1st with CSS staff to create resources for the PRINTS program.


May 24 and 25: Samson Economic Development organized a Trade and Career Fair

Education, business and community organizations gathered in Hobbema to showcase the potential opportunities available to people in our area. Most of the booths had an 'Enter your Name to Win' box.

Some of the booths had an interactive panel. The visitors could write their ideas on the engagement panels. I enjoyed listening to the community voices and a conversation with elders, warriors, grandmothers, aunties, youth, and our community leaders.  These two days gave me the tools-oars to navigate the library raft in our region.

I learned the perceptions and barriers some indigenous people have towards public libraries-that some indigenous people are not allowed and some indigenous people are not allowed to check out resources. I gave the indigenous people Overdrive downloadable ebooks bookmark and they just loved the 24/7 elibrary. I told them about Sweet Grass newspaper and resources available at the library.  I distributed community networking events sheet and in this way reached the 'hard to reach' people.



Thursday, May 26, 2011

Graphic Novel presentations by the students

Public-School Library Partnership

Activity: Presentations and a Beauty Contest

Theme of the presentations: Water

Time: May to June 2011.

Location: School Library


Download templates for the comic strips and books:

World Ocean Day:

Show your support for ocean life by wearing blue on June 8th: Wear Blue, Tell Two day (Let's calculate our carbon footprint.)

Digital Library: the Scripps Institution of Oceanography Library at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) 

Celebration: May as a Comic Book month and June 8th World Ocean Day

Friday, May 20, 2011

McKenzie volunteering; sorting ILL mail bags and labels at the library on May 19

Resident borrowing DVDs on May 19

Gina and George read aloud at the library on May 19

Wetaskiwin District Association of Community Living staff at the library on May 20

Victoria and Toby facilitating leadership capacity development workshop on May 19th

Lucas from high school volunteering; helping to shelve the books at the library on May 19

Jessica writing her exam at the library on May 19th

Language Coffeehouse presentation in Harrison on May 12th

Douglas Parsons facilitating intercultural communications workshop on May 9th

Community is the Library Update for the month of June

Networking and learning opportunities in our community.

June 6, 12-3 pm: Strategies and Tools when working with Newcomers (Workshop 3), facilitated by Douglas Parsons, funded by Alberta Employment and Immigration (support to businesses/part of attraction and retention strategy), Location: Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office.

June 7, 1:30-3 pm: All Abilities Welcome: Opening Doors to Inclusion workshop, facilitated by Mia Farley from St. Albert, funded by Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability, Location: Madyson Manor, 5511-50 Avenue

June 8: World Ocean Day, Wear Blue Tell Two. 

June 13, 12-3 pm: Communicating with First Nations People, facilitated by Bruce Cutknife from Maskwachees Cultural College, Location: Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office, 5010 50 Ave

June 20, 12-3 pm: Networking Lunch and Learn, Build connections and tap into resources in your community! Great door prizes!  Location: Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office, 5010 50 Ave

June 21, 9:30 am- 2 pm: National Aboriginal Day Celebration, organized by CFSA and community agencies, Location: Norm Brown Field and Drill Hall

May and June: Graphic Novels Beauty Contest, organized by Maxine Chapman, Librarian, Clear Vista School Library

Get connected with valuable learning opportunities to make you a stronger person, family and community! Enjoy meeting other people!


Thursday, May 19, 2011

June 7 at Madyson Manor

All Abilities Welcome: Opening Doors to Inclusion workshop

The Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability is proud to bring you a workshop which will engage seniors through an inspiring presentation and opportunity to learn about the benefits of physical activity.

ALACD is a national network dedicated to the wellness of Canadians with a disability through healthy active living, recreation and sport.

Tuesday June 7, 2011
1:30pm - 3:00pm

Are you an older adult with a disability or do you know someone with a disability and are interested in learning more about opportunities to participate in physical activity? If the answer is yes, then the AAW workshop will be of interest to you.

Our speaker, Mia Fairley is a mother of three, a high school teacher and sledge hockey coach with the Paralympic Sports Association.  Her eldest child was born with spina bifida and Hydrocephalus in 1993.  Since then, she has been an active advocate for persons with disabilities. Mia’s commitment to supporting active lifestyles for persons with disabilities means leading by example and getting involved.
 Expected Workshop Outcomes:

Ø Get engaged and empowered;
Ø Discover strategies on how to get more active as a person with a disability;
Ø Come away with ideas and practical tips to encourage your participation in inclusive recreation opportunities;
Ø Build awareness that anyone can be physically active;
Ø Promote a culture of inclusion;
Ø Take away practical tools & resources: AAW Tool Kit provided free.   

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Introducing Amanda student from Norquest college

Amanda is working on APRINTs (Parents Role in Interacting with Teacher Support), Aboriginal Day Celebration on June 21.  She is conducting a library services for the indigenous community study.

Amanda is preparing  a Family Bonding project. This includes art (making prints), let's eat together (conversation at the table) and print awareness/motivation (back to basics reading)

National Aboriginal Day, June 21, 2011 agenda

8 am: Booths/Tables set-up (inside drill hall)
9 am: Tipi set up (elders)
9:30 am: Pipe ceremony (elders)
9:30-2 pm: Booths and activities available
10 am: Welcoming remarks/drummers
11-12: Pow wow singing and dance demonstration, audience participation (round dance)
12- 1pm: BBQ
1:30-2 pm: Storytelling tipi
2:15 pm: Closing remarks and clean-up

Monday, May 16, 2011

Are you interested in communicating effectively with First Nations people?

Workshop 4 on Monday, June 13

   Are you interested in communicating effectively with First Nations people?

Hierarchy, time, communication and belonging are all sources of cultural misunderstandings at work. You will use each building block to anticipate and resolve cross-cultural issues in the workplace. We will discuss the Indigenous Myths in Canada and go into the generalized ideas to the specific workplace misunderstandings. The presentation includes a condensed history of First Nations with an emphasis on the Cree and in particular the Maskwachees (Bear Hills) Cree. The presentation touches on many aspects of First Nations and Cree history such as the Creation Stories, Bering Strait Theory, Paleolithic and Neolithic archeology, Discovery Doctrine, Royal Proclamation, Hudson’s Bay Charter, Fur Trade and Exploration, War of 1812, Cree Expansionism, Manifest Destiny, Confederation, Treaties, Indian Act and finally the Residential School.

Target Audience:                Decision makers, owners, managers, supervisors, coworkers, temporary
                                              immigrant workers, first, second and third generation workers, indigenous
                                              workers, Asian workers, ESL instructors, programmers, HR staff, community
                                               leaders and champions, anyone interested in recruiting indigenous people and
                                               learning more about the indigenous community.

Core Skill Set:
Suspending judgment, interpreting and negotiating differences, strengthening cross-cultural relationships and practicing cultural reflection

2.5 to 3 hours

Facilitator:                           Bruce Cutknife from Maskwachees Cultural College
Bruce Cutknife is a member of the Samson Cree First Nation in Hobbema Alberta. Bruce was born and raised on the Bear Hills Maskwachees community with Cree as his first language. He attended the Ermineskin Residential School up until grade 9 and then moved to Edmonton with a host non native family to complete High School. This was part of the integration and assimilation process from the Department of Indian Affairs.    
            In 1974 Bruce completed his High School in Ponoka Alberta, a small town near Hobbema.  After working a few years Bruce went back to school at the newly established Maskwachees Cultural College. Bruce started working in the Living History Program of the Maskwachees Cultural College for a number of years. His duties included Audio and Video recording of Elders talking about local history. This involved working with Elders to collect and archive the Cree language, work with the Cree Syllabics and use them in the collection and archiving.     
            Bruce went back to school to complete his undergraduate studies. He received his BA in History/Native Studies from the Augustana Universty College in Camrose Alberta. After graduation Bruce worked local Radio and Television, taught some Cree Language and Cree Studies courses at the Maskwachees Cultural College. Bruce was also the Director of Education for the Samson Cree nation. Bruce had worked with the Elders within the Maskwachees Cultural College to identify and name as many Cree name places as possible. The result was a map that would eventually be entered as evidence in a landmark court case within Canada.
Time:                                 June 13, 12-3 p.m.
Location:                          5010 50 Ave, Wetaskiwin (Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office)
Refreshment style:             Brown bag lunch     

Registration or for more information contact: Manisha Khetarpal, Wetaskiwin Public Library
Tel: 780 361 4447 or by email at

Cost: Free

Brought to you by:

·        Alberta Employment and Immigration
·        City of Wetaskiwin
·        Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Program
·        Wetaskiwin Public Library

Strategies and Tools to use when working with newcomers workshop on June 6th

Strategies and Tools to use when working with Newcomers:
 Intercultural Communication Workshop

What can I do to better communicate with newcomers to Alberta?

What can you do specifically to better improve your communication with newcomers to your community? How can you help improve the communication and well-being of the newcomer at the worksite?   Let’s take the theory and put it into practice!

Target Audience:

Everyone involved with newcomers in the community and worksite.

 Core Skill Set:
Suspending judgment to interpret cultural differences

 2.5 - 3 hours

Date: Monday, June 6th

Time: 12-3 p.m.  (Brown bag lunch)

Location:   5010 50 Ave, Wetaskiwin (Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office)
Facilitator: Doug Parsons from Parsons Development (

Cost: Free

Registration or more information: Manisha Khetarpal, Wetaskiwin Public Library,
Tel: 780 361 4447 or by email at

Brought to you by: Alberta Employment and Immigration, Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Society, City of Wetaskiwin, and Wetaskiwin Public Library

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Graphic Novels Beauty Contest

Do You Read Graphic Novels?

Create a presentation individually or as a team, with one of the three themes:

Review a graphic novel series you like

Do a character study on your favorite character

Design a whole new story  (Templates and word sheet available at the school library)

Location: @ our School Library

COME and HELP us Pick the TOP 3 WINNERS!!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Wetaskiwin Job Finding Club

Hi Manisha,
I am very excited to inform you that Career Assistance Network was the successful proponent for the Wetaskiwin Job Finding Club.  As per our previous communication I would like to know if I can set up a meeting with you – potentially on May 19th in the afternoon to go over terms of our partnership to use the Wetaskiwin Library for this program as well as a potential schedule.  I look forward to the opportunity to meet with you and discuss this exciting venture in detail.  Let me know if the 19th will work.  Take care.

Monday, May 9, 2011

May 9th Building Blocks of Canadian Culture

 Workshop 2 on Monday, May 9th

 Building Blocks of Canadian Culture

 What do other cultures say about working in Canadian culture?

Hierarchy, time, communication and belonging are all sources of cultural misunderstandings at work. You will use each building block to anticipate and resolve cross-cultural issues in the workplace. We will discuss the Multicultural Myths in Canada and go into the generalized ideas to the specific workplace misunderstandings.

Target Audience:                Decision makers, owners, managers, supervisors, coworkers,
                                            temporary immigrant workers, first, second and third generation
                                            workers, indigenous workers, Asian workers, ESL instructors,
                                            programmers, HR staff, community leaders and champions.

Core Skill Set:
Suspending judgment, interpreting and negotiating differences, strengthening cross-cultural relationships and practicing cultural reflection

2.5 to 3 hours

  Facilitator:                         Douglas Parsons from Parsons Development. 

  Time:                                 12-3 p.m.
  Location:                           5010 50 Ave, Wetaskiwin (Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Office)
  Refreshment style:           Brown bag lunch     

Registration or for more information contact: Manisha Khetarpal, Wetaskiwin Public Library
Tel: 780 361 4447 or by email at

Cost: Free

Brought to you by:

·        Alberta Employment and Immigration
·        City of Wetaskiwin
·        Wetaskiwin Community Literacy Program
·        Wetaskiwin Public Library

Promote reading

Reach for the Top

I volunteered and took care of different roles as a reader, judge and score keeper for the Reach for the Top program at the school on May 6 and 8.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Cultural market day at Falun school May 4th

Over 200 students, staff, parents, volunteers and support staff were exposed to intercultural education at Falun School. I did 3 indepth presentations and 7 fifteen minute presentations at the school. Read more at

Multicultural day celebration

Further to our conversation today, I can come to your library and do a presentation about Intercultural communications, a puppet show, saree wrapping demonstration and spice guessing game. I will like to request your staff to invite people in your community to come and share their culture and bring items to show and tell from another culture. Please read the attached document about the Language Coffeehouse.
I can also a display and fast track presentation about PRINTS family literacy program for your staff and early childhood education providers in your community.
PRINTS (Parents Roles in Interacting with Teacher Support.)

Target audience: Parents/ Caregivers

Stations:  This program is based on 5 steps - Talk and Oral storytelling, Books and book sharing, Environmental print, Play, and Writing/scribbling.

Based on ORIM: Providing Opportunities, Recognition, Interactions, Modeling and setting guidelines/limits.
Please let me know if you need more information.

Indigenous networking

Blanket of Remembrance
May 21   
Creating Hope Society, Edmonton      

Samson Economic Development Career Fair May 24 & 25, 2011, Four Plex Arena, 10:00am- 3:00pm, Hobbema, AB., More info. Call Alice Northwest, 780-585-3793  

30th Anniversary Round Dance, Robert & Sadie Buffalo
May 28,2011, Howard Buffalo Memorial Center, Hobbema, AB., Pipe Ceremony & Feast 5:00pm, Round Dance to follow, More info:  (780) 360-9958 or  360-5924

Package and sharing knowledge and expertise on May 12 at Harrison Hotsprings

I am presenting the Language Coffeehouse concept and case study at the Transitions and Transformations Conference in Harrison, BC on May 12th.

Library contact: Manisha Khetarpal, Manager of Library Services, Telephone: 780 361 4447
Description of Service:
Language Coffeehouse (LC), February 20, 2010, 2 to 4 p.m.
The coffeehouse was organized to celebrate UNESCOs International Mother Language Day and National Flag of Canada Day. The coffeehouse demonstrated, ‘Learning together builds an inclusive community.’  The activities offered were presentations (Norsk and Japanese culture), Tell Me More language learning database demonstration, Eritrean coffee making ceremony, 5 blends of coffee sampling, Cultural prints in Tagalog and Mandarin language learning basket, Peoplefirst Initiative, Spanish language conversation circle and interaction for all people.  The coffeehouse framework has expanded in 2011 to include visual literacy and a focus on oral communications, body language, tone, manner, and language as a form and tool to create understanding.
The partners and coffeehouse facilitators were The Alberta Library, Yellowhead Regional Library, EBSCO, Wetaskiwin Tomorrow, Catholic Social Services, City of Wetaskiwin, City Archives, Public Works, Community Learning Council, Community Literacy Network, Friends of the Library, Industry Canada’s CAP interns and the Library Board.
What were the goals, objectives and/or desired outcomes of this service?
·        To celebrate UNESCOs International Mother Language Day and languages used to communicate in our community
·        To share, exchange and learn words by a ‘Just do it’ culture and engaging in conversation circles (Oral Communications Essential Skill)
·        To showcase the advantages and benefits of the cultural diversity
·        To learn new words and build vocabulary
·        To instill in people the idea that ‘public libraries’ are the modern version of a ‘Public Square.’
·        To gather people at the public library square and participate in entertainment and learning from each other
·        To demonstrate ‘Tell Me More’ and other language learning resources available at the public library
·        To celebrate life by communicating face to face and making new friends with a common bond of learning the language
·        To position the public library as a welcoming and inclusive ‘lifelong learning’ place in our community
What were the actual results of this service?
·        More than 100 people participated in the event (Participant stayed for at least 30 minutes  i.e. 3000 minutes of time spent by our community at the library)
·        Over 12 free activities were offered and people were involved in a manner in which they enjoyed being at the library
·        85 people wrote messages in our language scrapbook
·        221 cultural prints were picked up from the language learning baskets
·        250 cups of coffee were consumed
·        50 people played with the ‘Tell Me More’ language learning database
·        25 new membership cards were issued
·        35 dictionaries were donated by the community and redistributed (dictionary exchange)
·        5650 words were written by citizens and students and dropped off in the word houses
·        Library was the hub of activity with webs of conversations and reading
·        Media coverage by Wetaskiwin Times before the event and two full pages of photo coverage after the event.
·        12 community partners and organizations worked together and weaved a tapestry of many different threads
·        Event was listed at ACE (Active Engaged Communities) website, NALD (National Adult Literacy Database) and Citizenship and Immigration websites
·        Seed for a program flagship and an interest by IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations) sister libraries and other public libraries in Alberta, other provinces of Canada, US and Australia.
·        EBSCO conducted a database training session for library staff prior to the event as libraries of our size are run by part time staff
·        Team building and relationship development by library staff

What makes this service excellent and/or innovative?
·        New way of using language as a medium to communicate and create understanding
·        To learn words and build the word capacity in our brain
·        To inform people to be proud of their assets and abilities to communicate in additional languages as well as their mother language
·        To generate an interest in learning languages such as Spanish, Japanese, English, Mandarin, French, Tagalog, and Norsk
·        To showcase and access materials in other languages from the public library
·        To use ‘webs of conversation’ and essential skills of ‘oral communications’ to engage our community and at the same time market the range of products and services offered by public libraries
·        Two in one approach: access and accountability
·        Use of the Manga graphic novels to learn the Japanese language
·        Coffeehouse brought forward the institution as the natural and visible ‘Welcoming Centre’ of our community; the new age ‘City Square’
·        Use of email technology to add posts to the blog and thus create a database of professional networking contacts and a platform for knowledge exchange
·        Zero cash exchange project because of a natural ‘desire to give to the library’ mindset

How does this service fit into the library’s formal plans?
The increase in traffic of people to the library helped with the following goals of our Plan of Service 2008-2012.
Goal C1: Reinvigorate adult programs
Goal C1: Develop new ways to promote programs and services
Goal B2: To promote the new materials in our collection 
Goal A2: Promoting the special needs computer
How was a community need for this service determined?
The community needs assessment was part of our Plan of Service. A service need was identified to fuse and use cultural literacy and essential skills to draw people to the public square. The coffeehouse fitted a community circle in a public square i.e. public library.

Additional information: includes media articles, blogs, community feedback and a presentation
Blogs to keep the community and working partners informed and to focus on their roles and responsibilities

Community engagement and feedback


Media Coverage
·        Library event will be good to the last drop, Wetaskiwin Times, February 15, 2010
·        Language coffeehouse helping stir Wetaskiwin cultural melting pot, Wetaskiwin Times, February 9, 2011

Community engagement initiatives

Partnerships which have resulted because of the Language Coffeehouse
Mindset shift from multicultural to intercultural.
·        April-June, 2011: Intercultural communications workshops. Alberta Employment and Immigration providing support to employers.
·        April 19, 2011: Cultural Experience presentations at Seniors homes
·        May 4th, 2011: Cultural Market Day at the school in Falun
·        May 2011: Word houses in schools to celebrate international bird migratory day with words

Language Coffeehouse is a resource for cultural literacy, adult literacy, family literacy, essential skill, engaging/interacting and participating with citizens/learners, library is the invisible school and the centre for lifelong learning, marketing, idea creation, networking, project management skills and language exchange.