Teen Services Questions -- What Does Your Library Offer Teens?

A teenager in Cincinnati (who independently sought out our website) is doing a senior HS project on teen services in libraries. Here's what Kikito writes in his (her?) journal:

"Ok, this is my first time writing a Journal. But I am doing reasearch (sic) on Teen searvices (sic)in the public library and I could use any help getting information on what libraries currently do for teens. Thanks for anyone who can send me some info or point me in the right direction for info."

GregS* and mdoneil posted responses to this query, but if anyone else wants to add a comment, we'll send it along to 'Kikito'. Please mention the size/scope of your library and a few features about what your library offers teens.


Let's hear something about your teen services; not only will it help Kikito, it's a good opportunity to exchange ideas that work.

Just off the top of my head--many libraries offer teen programming on a regular basis. The Bloomington Public Library in Illinois and the Thomas Ford Library in Western Springs, IL have offered teen DDR and gaming nights in the past. At my more low-tech library last week we had a chocolate tasting event where we rated different brands of chocolate chips. Most libraries have sections for young adult (read: teen) books, and some have whole rooms or areas of the library devoted to teen services. Teens can also use all the resources of the library that grown-ups can--getting help from reference librarians, for instance, or using library databases to research papers. Many libraries provide internet access, although teens often have to have parental permission to use it.There's lots more out there!

We are a library system with 21 libraries over 4 counties, ranging in size from 25,000 sq ft to 800 sq ft. Our branches offer game nights, book clubs, "make and take" craft programs, Teen Advisory Board - where the teens help with material selection, programming planning, etc. and it goes for volunteer hours at their school; study/ACT help sessions, and also, seasonal programs with speakers or booktalks. Something that has been "big" around here for teens at the library is karaoke night!

There's a blog called Alternative Teen Services, or "Alt Teen Services Blog" (which is how it's listed on my RSS reader), at http://yalibrarian.com/ .
This has a lot of information and links to libraries that are doing work with teens. Some have teen blogs of their own, podcasts, and MySpace pages.

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