Marketing for advocacy doesn’t just need to come out of storage annually, like holiday decorations, when it’s time to defend this year’s youth services budget. Instead, advocacy needs to happen all year-round. If we’ve done our work during the year, it should be easy to have a range of examples of real impact from which to draw when next year’s budget is being decided. (more…)
Chances are you’ve heard of Learning Labs, or you might even be fortunate enough to have one at your library. While these digital media spaces lend themselves to programs and projects connecting with teens, this post will look at connecting with other library staff through a mentorship role, with the collaborative creation of a Learning Lab as one possible example.
Last month, Urban Libraries Council hosted a webinar with organizations from Columbus, OH, St. Paul, MN, and New York, NY. Each speaker shared their execution of a Learning Lab, as well as the challenges they faced, including the demand for staff training or spending less time maintaining a virtual space. This webinar was an opportunity for organizations undergoing these huge shifts in their models for serving teens to share with other librarians some considerations to bring to a similar project. (more…)
“Like a caffeine molecule.” That’s how University of Washington ischool student Lauren Woody said she would visually depict her experience attending the two day summit at Midwinter held by YALSA as part of the National Forum on Libraries and Teens. At the summit discussion centered around the future of teens and libraries. Keep reading to find out more about what Lauren and fellow student Jesse O’Dunne said about their experiences at the summit. (more…)
There have already been several posts on this blog about Maker Spaces. Remember this one from October where blogger Candice Mack describes her own experience at getting more familiar with the Makerscene?
Among up-and-coming Maker Spaces, one new kid on the block is Chicago Public Library. I had a chance to speak with Ruth Lednicer, Director of Marketing on Press, on plans for their new hands-on learning environment. If you will be attending ALA’s upcoming annual conference this June, you should get a sneak peak if you visit the Harold Washington Library, the central library for the Chicago Public system.
Let’s take a look to see how this space will work and who the audience will be! (more…)
This January, the Center for an Urban Future released Branches of Opportunity, a report about New York City’s Public Libraries. Despite the important role they play in the city’s human capital system, libraries continue to remain undervalued by policymakers.
I spent some time on the phone this month with David Giles, the Center’s Research Director, who wrote the report . He explained his findings related to teens. The answers that follow summarize his words.
While this report was particular to New York public libraries and not exclusive to teen users, there are definitely some takeaways for our own library systems and settings and for the work that we do with young people. (more…)
ALA Council is the governing body of ALA. Council meets during Midwinter and Annual, with significant electronic communication in between.
I’m an ‘at-large’ Councilor, which means I’m not representing a particular state, ALA division, or roundtable like some other Councilors do. For example, all divisions (like the youth ones, ALSC, AASL, and YALSA) have an ALA Council representative. There’s also an Executive Board and Council Officers as well. While the structure of Council might sound complicated and can be at times, every Councilor there has an important role.
Though not every issue Council discussed at Midwinter had to do with our service population, I have briefly summarized those issues which did apply below:
When this month’s VOYA issue arrived, I was excited to find the article on teen homelessness: When the Library Is the Only Place That You Have to Go: Homeless Teens and Libraries by Rebecca Hill. And it doesn’t disappoint. (Check out digital VOYA on the right sidebar to read the full text of the article). Hill indicates that 1.35 million homeless children, a staggering number, live in the U.S. today. She goes on to outline how several libraries address the homeless patron issue and mentions both applicable national programs and local collaborations that have collaborated with libraries to tackle issues surrounding teen homelessnessness.
How do you serve homeless youth at your library? (more…)
Many libraries provide opportunities for teens to build skills through volunteering, attending or leading a program. In the past few weeks at my library, meetings have come up where I thought it would make sense to invite teens to have a presence at the table and I’m glad we got them involved. Here are a couple of examples of how we had teens participate in meetings:
- A teen intern at my library proposed a handout for a film festival and indicated what the festival categories should be. At about the same time, my co-workers and I were having discussions about such a festival and setting up a meeting with a director of the premiere festival in our town. (Someone with expertise who has run and coordinated such an event for several years.) (more…)
I’ve written in the past on the YALSAblog about the programs we provide in my library that help teens to grow up successfully. The recently published Kids Count data book re-affirmed for me the importance of what we are doing at my library and the positive impact our work has on teens.
The Kids Count data points to some opportunities for libraries to help teens succeed. For example, data shows there is lack of job skills for those aged 16-24. This makes me think that one thing the library can do is to provide robust opportunities, such as a strong volunteer program, so that teens can gain and sharpen these skills.
What can you do in a volunteer program to help teens gain the necessary skills?
Have you been looking for a creative and engaging way to help older teens develop important information literacy skills to read the news with a critical eye? This $50,000 opportunity might be just want you need!
From the ALA Press Release: “Public libraries and library consortia are invited to apply for more than $50,000 in training and support, in the News Know-how initiative that helps students, grades 10-12, learn skills that will help them distinguish fact from opinion, check news and information sources and distinguish between propaganda and news.
Students work with librarians, journalists and news ethicists in the program funded by the Open Society Foundations and administered by the American Library Association’s Office of Intellectual Freedom (OIF). Proposals must be submitted by Dec. 8, 2012. To apply, go to www.newsknowhow.org/apply.”
Three public libraries will be chosen. Will yours be one of them?