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From Nooga.com, a chat with chief teen librarian Justin Hoenke about changes made at the library to benefit teens and tweens. Earlier this week, Hoenke announced that he had accepted a promotion as coordinator of teen services at the library.
We spoke to him about the new position, living in Chattanooga and his plans for the future of teen services at the library and beyond.
Coordinator of teen services, eh? Using video game jargon, explain what this means in terms of "leveling up."
If my old title as teen librarian was level one, this would be level two, and I'd have increased abilities! Think of level one as me just being able to use basic magical abilities in a video game, like the ability to jump super-high. Now that I'm at level two, I can do awesome things with my magical abilities in this video game, like use magic to heal myself and maybe even use magic to cast fire and ice spells. You know, librarians are actually magicians.
What changes with the new position in terms of daily responsibility for you?
Now I'm more focused on teen services throughout the entire Chattanooga Public Library system at all of our locations (downtown, Northgate, Eastgate, South Chattanooga). In my old role, I was just working on all things on The 2nd Floor of the downtown library. This new position allows me to stretch out and help the other branches in our library system achieve greater things for teens in the community. Is it more work? Of course! But it's awesome work, and I'm so happy to be the person selected to do it.
From USA Today, an interview with Romance Writers of America's Librarian of 2014, Sean Gilmartin.
Interviewer: From your bio on RWA's website: Growing up, (Sean) would read his mother's romance novels, partially for the juicy parts, and knew that one day he would write a romance himself.
Why romance novels? What about them appeals to you personally?
Sean: Love is a complicated and strange thing. I have always been drawn to the bond that love creates between people, whether that is romantic or not. I am fascinated by love that blossoms unexpectedly. To have a rough and tough character who vows to never open his or her heart, only to have it stolen by the last person they expected … ah, it gets me every time!
As a teen librarian I keep up-to-date with YA novels and many of them have some form of romance in them. If you think about popular songs or movies, there is usually some aspect of a loving relationship between two characters. It's almost inescapable. When I read romance I get hopeful and happy because two people are finding a love that completes them. I find it so satisfying when I finish a novel and everybody lives happily ever after.
“Anyway,” I said, when we were finished, “Nathaniel Hawthorne once wrote an ornery letter to his editor complaining about popular fiction. He went on and on about all the ‘scribbling’ women who sold hundreds of thousands of copies while he sold none. He thought they were dumb simply by virtue of being popular. Don’t you understand?” I scooped a lock of hair behind her ear in a way that said I would support her if she decided to have our baby. “You don’t gain credibility by being widely read, Ruth, you gain credibility by being accepted by rich, white, men.”
"Parents in Idaho called the cops last week on junior-high student Brady Kissel when she had the nerve to help distribute a book they’d succeeded in banning from the school curriculum.
The book in question was Sherman Alexie’s young adult novel “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.” Published in 2007, it won the National Book Award and has become popular with young teens, supposedly for its universal themes of fitting in, making sense of race, and sexual discovery."
LISNews received the following letter from the Carnegie Corporation of New York; please read and take part (if you wish...):
I am writing from Carnegie Corporation of New York, where we've created a web photo project together with dozens of education nonprofits to support national Teacher Appreciation Week, which starts Monday. I'm hoping you'll help spread the word to people at schools (which could, if public, have the opportunity to win $3500), and anyone interested in inspired learning and education, and/or photography…
“Picture This!” aims to do just that. Using Carnegie’s "umbrella"
position—supporting multiple organizations, ranging from universities, to the NEA, the National Council on Teacher Quality, Public Impact, Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry, and more—we’ve created a far-reaching collaboration to call on students, parents, teachers, administrators, and anyone who’s witnessed great teaching, to upload pictures to our photo-sharing site Great Teaching that “visually” answer one of these questions:
When I picture great teaching I see ________.
When my teaching is inspired I ________.
My teacher inspires me when ________.
Plus, the person who submits the most inspiring photo (pic and description) can win $3500 for a K-12 public school of his or her choice! The site is live, so please take a look (and upload a photo!). Thanks for your help spreading the word. Finally, the project also integrates with Instagram through the hashtag #GreatTeaching.
Chief Communications and Digital Strategies Officer Carnegie Corporation of New York
From The Onion:
SANDUSKY, OH—In a moment of confusion, area teenager Eric Dooley briefly walked into a local teen outreach center Tuesday, a place that neither he nor any of his teenaged friends would ever knowingly enter.
"Oh, geez. I'm sorry," the 15-year-old said as he quickly assessed the four battered foosball tables, outdated PlayStation console, overly friendly counselor, and garish orange and purple paint scheme—all intended to appeal to him—before exiting the facility in less than six seconds. "This isn't where I'm supposed to be. Sorry. Sorry."
Dooley reportedly joined a gang later that afternoon.
Slashdot's great headline "Internet-Deprived Kids Turning To 'McLibraries' 315" for This WSJ Article on the digital divide was great.... "In many communities, after the library and the computer lab close for the night, there is often only one place to turn for students without internet access at home: the local McDonald's."
St. Paul Public Library's "Read Brave" program is a One Read-like campaign with an added goal of youth empowerment. SPPL is encouraging teens to read A.S. King's Everybody See The Ants--a YA novel addressing bullying--and to create art in response to it, in preparation for an author visit from King in late February. Bonus: participating teens get a chance to board Lady Gaga's Born Brave tour bus, which will make a special stop before heading to her February 6th St. Paul concert.
From Mashable, a report on library use by young people.
According to a study by the Pew Research Center published Tuesday, 16-29 year olds are reading more often, largely because of the mass amounts of e-content that is available to them on mobile devices. They’re not just reading short blips of content, either — people under 30 are reading more long-form content on their smartphones and tablets, but also continuing to visit their local libraries.
Eight in 10 Americans ages 16-29 read a book this past year, and more than six out of 10 used their local public library. Of the people who read this past year, 75 percent read a print book while 19% read an ebook, and 11% listened to an audiobook. Forty six percent used the library for research, 38 percent borrowed books (print books, audiobooks, or ebooks), and 23 percent borrowed newspapers, magazines, or journals.
High schoolers, especially, report borrowing books from libraries.
Believe it or not, Generation Y might just be the most bibliophilic generation alive, according to a new consumer study. Gen Y – those born between 1979 and 1989 – spent the most money on books in 2011, knocking the longtime book-buying leaders, baby boomers, from the top spot, according to the 2012 U.S. Book Consumer Demographics and Buying Behaviors Annual Review.