Making a Difference in the Garden State
The Teen Advisory Board (TAB) of the Montclair Public Library has come a long way since its inception. This group of teens has sought to create a welcoming environment, not merely for themselves but for children and adults as well. They have implemented successful programs such as a Wii & Board Games day and Minecraft; during which they invite people of all ages to interact and play together. TAB is also a strong advocate of literacy, especially at an early age; so much so, that they host various events such as a Fairy Tale pajama story time, Star Wars Reads Day, as well as a book buddies program in celebration of Read Across America. In addition, TAB has created and maintained their very own bi-monthly newsletter called, The TAB Chronicle. This has proven to be a great outlet for the group to share their thoughts and talents through their poetry, artwork, and opinion pieces.
The future holds a lot of promise for the teens of Montclair. TAB in conjunction with other teen volunteers are currently offering their services during the implementation of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Technology in their library. By joining such a tremendous project, TAB will help the Montclair Public Library make historic technological changes and position itself as a leader in the community. In addition, the Youth Services Department will soon be introducing their very own maker space called, Montclair Makes It (MMi). With gadgets such as a 3D printer, a spinbot kit, a green screen, and much more, who knows what the TAB will think of next!
I have yet to meet another group of teens who are as motivated and dedicated in their efforts to make a library their own. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend creating a TAB in your community. The results speak volumes!
Submitted by Justin Therese Kontonicolaou (Young Adult Librarian)