My colleague recently shared this videocast (14 minutes) from a professor at Syracuse that demonstrates various board games that many people might not be familiar with.

While I liked the video, the host of the program starts off by saying, “Back in the day, families got together to play any variety of games at home, but in this day and age of electronics, it’s tough to unplug and get together.”

We recently had a family gaming night with console games such as Super Monkey Ball, Madden ’06, and DDR, board games such as chess and Monopoly, and retro games on the PC such as Pacman, Donkey Kong, and Tetris. Do other libraries have stories to share with family gaming nights at the library?

As James Paul Gee says in the following article in regards to computer and video-“that games are more a social pastime than an antisocial one.”

Don’t Bother Me Mom-I’m Learning! by Prensky talks a lot about the interaction that can take place with families and video gaming.

I think family gaming nights with video and board games can be valuable for libraries and teens-especially to help create those situations where teen participation can take place to figure out how such an event might run.

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

About Kelly Czarnecki

Kelly Czarnecki is a Teen Librarian at ImaginOn with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. She is a member of the YALSA blog advisory board.

2 Thoughts on “Gaming and families

  1. Linda Braun [Member] on August 26, 2006 at 1:34 pm said:

    I love the idea of taking sitting around as a family and playing board games to the 21st century in this way. It would be fun to have teens and their parents and siblings join forces to compete with another family in DDR or another video game. (What about those 40something year old parents showing their stuff with Guitar Hero!) It would be fun to have parents, etc. talk about their board game experiences and compare them with teens to what those experiences are and might be like today with video games. There are lots of possibilities.

  2. snicholson [Member] on August 27, 2006 at 3:37 pm said:

    I’m glad you picked up on my video clip.. I was pleasantly suprised to see someone from the library community find my work.

    Not only am I a professor, but I used to be a librarian and now am a library scientist, teaching MSLIS courses and doing research on library management at Syracuse’s School of Information Studies! I also attend ALA regularly, and would love to work with someone on putting together a program on board games in the library.

    Board games are my hobby – I do a weekly video on them over at Board Games with Scott ( – but I’ve thought that it might be a nice tie-in for me to work with some public library folks about assembling a program with videos on how to play games and then games available. One of the challenges with a new game is learning how to play, but if there were a video in with the game that people could watch first, perhaps it would be easier to get right into the game.

    Any thoughts?

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