This Week in Libraryland is a weekly post that will give you a glimpse into my day-to-day as a teen librarian. I’ve been working as a librarian for almost three years now with Dawn over at Bang Bang BOOK Blog. I absolutely love being a librarian because it means that I get to do a little of everything; some days I’m a counselor, a teacher, a listening ear, a friend, a designer, a professional reader and so much more. I love that every day promises something new!
I began my week by putting the finishing touches on a STEM spy science program that I had the next day. For the program, teens were going to play the role of a technical operations specialist who needed to remove a “spy” from a hostile situation. I simulated a code sent to tech ops from the spy that spelled out what the teens would need to do to get the spy to safety. I created a coded message using Morse code and Photoshop and had a teen test it out to make sure I got it right.
Then teens had to use LittleBits and everyday items like paper, rubber bands, and plastic cups to create a signaling device. I also used The Maze Runner Game app to simulate the escape portion of the program.
In the early afternoon I had a meeting about planning two summer reading grants that we’re going to propose to our city’s planning Coalition. We had to draft two grants in an hour and a half. No big deal, right? Wrong…
When we opened the room at 2:30, one of my regulars came in with a huge stack of books that they wanted to show me. About two weeks ago, this teen was not a reader at all. She uses the library all the time, but it was usually just to socialize or have one of us help her edit her essays and school assignments. I happened to recommend a book to her, and now she’s hooked on reading! It’s so exciting to see a teen drawn to reading because I know first-hand how exciting it is to read and it’s going to make her life much easier in high school and college. However, she got a little too zealous and wanted to read War and Peace by Tolstoy. While I reinforced the positivity of that goal, I helped her see that at her reading and interest levels, Tolstoy’s novel would probably work against her. I was able to give her something a little more age-appropriate in the end. She even decided to sign up for our monthly teen book discussion group! Librarian win!
I finally got around to opening one of our Raspberry Pi 2 kits to start setting them up and teaching myself how to use them. If you’re not familiar with Raspberry Pi, they are basically credit card sized computers meant to teach the basics of computer science to students.
They require quite a lot of messing around with them to figure out how things work, but I think they’ll be really fun to use. You can each anything with these things: software development, coding and programming, PC game development, robotics, web browser creation and modification, and so much more. As you can see, it completely took over my desk.
Dawn and I received an ARC box in the mail on Tuesday! Each month, our book supplier provides us with a box full of pre-published books for us to read, review, and pass along to teen readers. Publishers send their books to our supplier in the hopes that we’ll read them and plan to purchase them in our collection. We had a really great box this month, so I’ll be planning on reading all weekend…
If you’re a librarian and you want to receive these monthly ARC boxes, contact your Baker & Taylor rep!
Later that evening, I had my spy science program in the teen room. We had a snow storm that day, so attendance was low, but the teens that showed up had a fun time. I styled it as a race instead of a normally structured program, and I think that added to the fun.
I got a special delivery from Macmillan on Wednesday that contained a pre-pub book I’ve been trying to get my hands on for months! Behold, The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi, an epic fantasy debut with inspired by Indian mythology. I am really drawn to Indian culture and mythology so I knew I had to read this book. It even came with a pack of temporary tattoos!
A few of our teen volunteers wait to help us film an I Am Malala promotional video that we made for our library’s upcoming Community Reads event in February. One of the teens helped us wrap books for the Blind Date with a Book display that Dawn put out this week. If you want to check out the display, go read her post here!
We’ve had quite a bit of behavioral issues in The Hive for the past month and things kind of came to a head this week. I was so stressed when I left work on Wednesday that I hit up the Culver’s drive-thru and ordered $30 worth of food…
We spent most of our day getting ready for our Minecraft Club that evening. We’ve had a teen club for over a year now, but this was our first time presenting a challenge that required our server and a map being built inside of it. We asked one of our tech guys to build a Tower of Terror, full of traps, pit falls, lava, and other hazards, for the teens to traverse. The goal is simple: survive the longest and get to the top of the tower. We had quite a large group and things started off with a hitch when our Minecraft server crashed! For Dawn and I, it was certainly the evening of terror…
I finished my evening by teaching several teens how to play Clue. I was exhausted after the two hour Minecraft Club, but I couldn’t say no. One of the teens couldn’t seem to understand that the three Clue cards must stay in the secret envelop until the end… We had to start over twice *facepalm*.
I am spending my weekend reading! On my current list is a few books for the YASF Tournament of Books that I’m participating in this year and The Star-Touched Queen that I got in the mail this week.
Finally, I’ll be finishing up my re-read of Kiss of Deception! If you’re a fan of the series, join us for the re-read podcast series that starts this upcoming Monday! View the schedule and listen to our podcast here! We hope to see you there!