Tag Archives: teens

Book Lists – YA

Looking for a good YA book to read? Looking for a good YA book to recommend to your patrons? Looking for a good YA book to add to your collection? If so, here are some great lists for you!

2016 ARSL Conference

arslOn October 26-29, I had the pleasure of attending the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) 2016 Conference in Fargo, North Dakota. This was my first national library conference, and what a conference it was! Each day was full of interesting speakers and great sessions.

Perhaps my favorite moment from the conference occurred during Will Weaver’s speech. Weaver is the author of Red Earth, White Earth, A Gravestone Made of Wheat and Other Stories, Saturday Night Dirt, and Striking Out. In his speech, Weaver talked about the importance of libraries and how they have influenced him over the years. He held up a book at one point, and confirmed with the crowd of librarians that it was indeed a library book. He admitted he has the tendency of accidentally stealing library books when he visits them for various engagements. As it turns out, a librarian from the library to which the book belonged was in attendance! As the audience roared with laughter, Weaver had the librarian come up to the front and he returned the book to her.

I thoroughly enjoyed each keynote speaker, and I don’t think there was one session I regretted attending. If anything, I regretted not being able to attend more sessions!

I attended two sessions on programming. One was on teen programs and the other was on how to utilize your community for library programs. The session on teen programs, presented by the librarians at the North Loan City Library in Utah, offered some great ideas: Nerf gun events, teens volunteering at the library to earn points, forming a teen advisory board, and creating an email list just for teens so they can stay up-to-date on what teen-related things are happening at the library.

The mining your community session, presented by the librarian of the Stanley Community Library in Idaho, was just as beneficial. Every community has its gems so utilize them! For example, if someone in your community knits as a hobby, ask this person if he/she would come to the library and host a program on kitting; or if someone is a toy collector, set up a display or have the person come in for a lecture on their history. Some of the great program topics from this session included knitting, adult coloring, lectures, writing classes, music, car maintenance, photography, and cooking.

Librarians are often seen as the people who know everything. As a result, we are likely to receive technology questions that we may not know the answer to, or perhaps the patron is not being receptive. One session on patron technology training tips addressed this. Some of the tips from this session included identify yourself as a technology trainer and do the best you can, create a plan, take deep breaths, narrate your process to the patron, focus on quality, create teachable moments, and implement a resource guide.

Another session, presented by California librarian/ trainer Crystal Schimpf, covered the basics of digital storytelling for libraries and how it can be used for advocacy. Technology is ubiquitous in today’s world so it makes sense for libraries to use it to promote themselves and reach patrons. Libraries can make videos that highlight a database, give a virtual tour, or provide a crash course on services. The sky is the limit! The session stressed that videos should be short but fun. When creating videos you will want to create goals, pick your video platform, write scripts, log your shots, and get the necessary equipment and software (which can be done at a relatively low cost). Once the videos are done, share them on social media and get them out there as much as you can.

One of the more entertaining sessions was presented by Harmony Higbie, director of the Underwood Public Library in Underwood, ND. The session was on Kahoot, a modern twist on trivia. Kahoot can be played for free on your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Kahoot can be used in the library for trivia, book clubs, and more! For more information on Kahoot, visit their website: https://getkahoot.com/

In addition to the before mentioned sessions, I attended two sessions relating to digital preservation. If you would like more information on this area, review the services offered by the Internet Archive. You can also contact the State Library’s Digital Initiatives coordinator.

There were around 500 librarians from across the country at the ARSL conference, and I was lucky to meet some of them and hear their stories. One of the librarians I met was from beautiful St. George, Utah, which is where the ARSL conference will be in 2017. The librarian will be the co-chair for the 2017 conference, and he had some great things to say about the St. George area (he even showed me a picture of the view from his backyard to prove his point).

If you are interested in attending the ARSL conference, I would highly encourage you to do so. You can learn more about ARSL and the annual conference at their website: http://arsl.info/

If you have any questions or would like more information on the ideas and conference sessions I shared, feel free to contact me.

NDLCC Standards Compliance: Programming for Teens and Adults

Guest post by Mary Soucie, State Librarian (first published in the September 2016 issue of Flickertale)

libraryThis  is  our  continuing  series  on  compliance  with  the  North  Dakota  Library  Coordinating  Council’s  Standards  for  Public Libraries. This month, we are going to focus on library programming, one of my passions. I absolutely love library programming for all ages. In today’s busy world, libraries are serving the needs of their patrons in new and traditional ways. Library programming has increased as has attendance.

The standards for public libraries indicate that libraries serving a populations of up to 12,500 should provide programs for all ages. For the libraries serving populations over 12,500, there are a specific number of programs required for each level- kids, teens and adults.

Many of our ND libraries offer programs for kids. More libraries are offering programs for adults; including everything from coloring clubs to books-in-bars book clubs to craft programs. Some of our libraries offer summer reading programs for all ages while others offer summer reading programs for kids and teens and a winter reading program for adults.

I think it’s important to offer programs for all ages.  As libraries continue to strive to prove their value and relevance in the “Google era”, it is one way to meet the needs of the community. Programs will bring different people into the library and will get people talking about the library.

I am going to focus on adult and teen programs because our ND public libraries have a good handle on offering kids programs. If you’re struggling with how to start expanding your programs to include adults or teens, consider offering some programs that are open to teens and adults. Craft programs are one type of program that you can easily include both age groups in. When the State Library recently held our Pokémon Go event, we had people of all ages in the library; and the different age groups participated in all aspects of the program. If you have an adult coloring group, why not open it to teens?

If you are struggling to serve teens, consider partnering with the local school district on something. Perhaps a book club that is held at the school but run by the library. Stock up on duct tape and have a drop-in “build a something”, a wallet for example, from duct tape.

Consider offering adult programs beyond just a book club. There are lots of ideas for adult programs. One program that I wanted to implement at my last library (but left before I got the chance) was a “cooking club”. Choose a different food group each month, such as soups, and each person makes a sample and brings it to share. The library can share the resources that they have that tie in with the food group; be creative and think beyond cookbooks. A friend of mine did this at her library and patrons were very responsive.

Programming doesn’t have to be hard or onerous on the librarian. Don’t feel like you have to provide all the programs either. If you know someone with a hobby, invite them in to do a library program for you. If you ever want to bounce ideas for library programs, give me a holler, as it’s one of my favorite topics to chat about. You can also visit the Field Notes blog (https://ndslfieldnotes.wordpress.com/) where you will find a plethora of posts about library programs.

“YALSA’s Teens’ Top Ten” Nominees for 2016

Teens' Top TenYALSA has posted the list of the 2016 Teens’ Top Ten Nominees. The 26 books on this list are the favorites from 2015, nominated and chosen by teens. Voting takes place between August 15 and Teen Read Week (October 9-15, 2016), with the 10 winners being announced the week after Teen Read Week.

Now is a great time to have your teens start reading the nominees so they are ready to vote when the time comes. This will also get teens reading during the summer, which is the ultimate goal. Continue reading

2016 Teen Video Challenge

Teen Facebook CSLP2016

This year we were pleased to have three entries from two North Dakota libraries in the CSLP Teen Video Challenge!

The first entry was “Get in the Game, Read” from Maya Bachmeier from the Minot Public Library:

The second entry was “Read in the Summer” from Nolan Mathews, also from the Minot Public Library:

The third entry was “Get in the Spirit” from Skye Avka, Racheal Couture, and Andrea McCubbin at the Valley City-Barnes County Public Library:

“Read in the Summer” was chosen as the winning video from North Dakota. Nolan and the Minot Public Library will receive prizes from CSLP and Upstart. All participants received a certificate and a book from the North Dakota State Library for participating. Thank you to all the 2016 participants!

2016 “Get in the Game” Teen Video Challenge

Slogan

The Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP) has launched the 2016 Teen Video Challenge, a national video competition for teens to get involved with reading and their public library’s summer reading program. Teens across the country are invited to create a 30 to 90 second video with their interpretation of the 2016 teen slogan “Get in the Game–Read” in combination with reading and libraries. This is an opportunity for teens to showcase their creativity and have their ideas heard before a national audience.

The winning video from each participating state will be named one of the CSLP 2016 Teen Videos to promote summer reading nationwide. $150 will be awarded to the creators of the winning state video and their associated public library will receive prizes worth at least $50 from CSLP, Upstart, and CSLP partners. Winners will be announced by CSLP in April 2016.

For full details about the CSLP 2016 Teen Video Challenge and to find out how to enter in North Dakota, please visit http://library.nd.gov/videocontest.html.

Letters About Literature

boy writingEach year, the Center for the Book sponsors the  “Letters About Literature” contest. Readers in grades 4-12 are invited to write a personal letter to an author for the contest, which is a national reading and writing program. The letter can be to any author (living or dead) from any genre explaining how that author’s work changed the reader’s life or view of the world.

Prizes will be awarded on both the state and national levels. The North Dakota Center for the Book’s panel of judges will select the top letter writers in the state. Their winning letters will be published online at the North Dakota State Library’s website. North Dakota winners will also receive monetary prizes and then advance to the national judging.

  • Submissions from Grades 9-12 must be postmarked by December 4, 2015.
  • Submissions from Grades 4-8 must be postmarked by January 11, 2016.

Please visit www.read.gov/letters for more information and entry forms. If you would like to incorporate this into your classroom lessons, there is also a Teaching Guide.

The 23rd annual writing contest for young readers is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. Additional support has been provided by the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress, in partnership with the North Dakota Center for the Book and the North Dakota State Library.

If you have further questions about the North Dakota contest, please contact Shari Mosser at the North Dakota State Library at ssandwick@nd.gov or 701-328-3252.

Programming with Post-It Notes

sticky-notes1-400x300[1]This month I’ve rounded up some easy self-directed program ideas for teens featuring Post-It notes. Two of these programs require multiple colors of sticky notes. Purchasing colored sticky notes cost about $20, which was considered a low-cost program by the librarians. The other two are little more flexible, and, while plain might work best, you could even use sticky notes with logos you’ve picked up for free or been given as promotional items if you want to keep it really low-cost. The two that require colored sticky notes are also require the most display space, which may be limiting for smaller libraries.

  • Post-It Note Art: Use colored sticky notes to create designs, using an online tool from 3M.

Do you have an abundance of sticky notes on hand? Have you tried Post-It programming? Share your stories in the comments?

Summer Reading and Connected Learning

3240-puzzle-colors-WallFizz[1]Do you have a harder time engaging teens in your summer reading program than kids? Have you considered a different approach to connecting teens to the library during the summer? At the CSLP annual meeting in April, K’Lyn Hann from the Newberg Public Library in Oregon shared her new approach to teen summer reading that focuses on connected learning.

What is connected learning? Wikipedia defines it as “a type of learning that integrates personal interest, peer relationships, and achievement in academic, civic, or career-relevant areas. The connected learning model suggests that youth learn best when: they are interested in what they are learning; they have peers and mentors who share these interests; and their learning is directed toward opportunity and recognition.”

Instead of focusing on just reading, K’Lyn’s program focuses on having teens make a connection between what’s already going on in their lives with related resources the library has to offer. For instance, if you went fishing, you could locate a pamphlet on fish native to your state, a book on how to fly fish, an article how water pollution is bad for fish, or a recipe for cooking fish. Then you would list the activity on your log, along with the item and where you found it in the library. Reading counts an activity as well. For more details, visit her Teens Summer Program page to view her program flyer, entry ticket, and prizes. Continue reading

Masquerade Madness Teen Lock-In

teen lock in

At the Summer Reading Workshops, we discuss summer programming ideas for kids, teens, and adults. When it comes to teen programming, frequently the discussion centers on the challenges of programming for teens. If you would like to start offering programs for teens, why not start with a nationwide program where you have the support of other librarians hosting a similar event?

The National Teen Lock-In is an event where “libraries across the United States invite teens to a locally hosted lock-in on the same night.” This year the Lock-In will be held on Friday, July 31, and the theme is Masquerade Madness. While individual lock-ins are organized at the local level, participating librarians “share ideas and expertise to coordinate events that bring teens together across time zones and geographic boundaries.” Last year, 80 libraries across the country participated. Activities include crafts, contests, and games.

One of the main attractions orchestrated by the organizers at the national level is the opportunity to participate in real time video chats with YA authors. YA authors participating in 2015 include:

  • Heather Demetrios
  • Jessica Brody
  • Jennifer Niven
  • S.J. Kincaid

In Homer, Alaska, Claudia Hanes participated because she was “searching for new ways to virtually connect area teens with other libraries in real time.” She points out that Homer “is a relatively remote place,” and I’m sure many of you in small, rural, North Dakota communities can relate to that.

There is a wiki for participants where you can register your event and find out more. While you can benefit from the expertise and experience of others, there is no specific template you must follow, which is great, because that allows you to work within whatever budget you have! You can tailor the event however it would best fit the needs of your community. Keeping that in mind, if your library doesn’t have space for an overnight event, why not partner with another organization in your community that also serves teens? Off-site events can still be library sponsored!

Has anyone tried a teen library lock-in? It may sound crazy, but 80 libraries have done it! What has worked for you? Share your suggestions in the comments!