Young Adults


An Unconventional Teen Librarian

Librarianship is not always a first career.

Take the career of Gayle Morrow, a 59-year old rollerblading teen librarian. After working as a teacher and accountant, Morrow found herself unemployed and decided to go to school in her hometown of Philadelphia.

When the John F. Kennedy Library in Vallejo (CA) was hiring a young adult librarian, she decided to give that line of work a try. For her, this latest career has been "so much fun."

She dedicates her days to creating fun activities to draw city youth to the library. Her love of not only the library but the teens she works with is evident. "They keep you young. I love the way they think. It's fun to be around them," she said.

Working with the teens has taught her a lot about young people, she said. "They're what adults would like to be. They're open. They're honest. They accept people for what they are," she said, apparently including herself. Times Herald Online.

Empty Shelves, Filled With Imagination

WHEN Geri Ellner began her job this school year as the librarian — or in the current parlance, as a library media specialist — at the Brooklyn Collegiate, a public school for Grades 6 through 12 in Ocean Hill, Brownsville Brooklyn, she did not have much of a book collection.

Many of the shelves in the small library, illuminated by harsh fluorescent lights, were bare, and many books were outdated or not particularly age-appropriate, like a children’s volume titled “Now We Are Six.” For the children's books, she created a section entitled Memory Lane.

So Ms. Ellner, who has been working in the school library system for 10 years, did what she could to improve the library with a limited book budget of $3,244 for the school year. New York Times.

Minors may face limits at San Diego libraries

San Diego County libraries might soon allow parents to answer that question as officials look at changing the library card application for patrons under age 18.
A new proposal pushed by county Supervisor Bill Horn would require parents to mark a box indicating whether their child could check out R-rated DVDs and videos from the county's 33 libraries. The policy now allows patrons of all ages access to all library materials.

One Teens' Opinion on Libraries

...from LA Youth, "the newspaper by and about teens". She goes from absolutely hating libraries to proclaiming 'libraries rule'.

High School Knitters & Librarian Help Infants in the Developing World

Some students at Lower Cape May Regional High School (LCMR) are picking up a new hobby and saving lives. The NJ school’s knitting club kicked off this fall when Art Teacher Susan Wolfe and Librarian Tish Carpinelli invited skilled and novice knitters to the library to learn about and improve their knitting skills while making caps that can help save the lives of babies in the developing world.

Simple health measure are the key to saving many of these children: antibiotics to fight infections, training for skilled birth attendants, immunizations, on education on breastfeeding and basic care such as drying a newborn baby and keeping it warm. (That’s where the hats come in.) The program is Save the Children's Knit One Save One.

The program has attracted knitters from around the world, including high profile knitters like actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Debra Messing and about two dozens LCMR students. Just a few students showed up for the first meeting, but the excitement spread (fueled by Wolfe’s homemade cookies), and more students are participating every week. Story from Cape May County Herald. Sounds like a great activity!

Book Causes Parental Stir in Florida

TAVARES (FL) -- A book in a middle school library already has upset one parent. David Myers, of Tavares, brought the book "Me, Penelope" to school board members Monday and read a sexually explicit passage involving a 16-year-old girl.

Myers' 12 year old daughter, a student at Tavares Middle School, checked the book out after getting permission from the librarian, he said.

"I'm to the point right now where I'm about ready to pull my daughter out and start signing the check to private school," Myers said. "But 95 percent of the parents of the kids that go to these schools can't do that."

Teen novels find huge new audience in the minivan set

"Harry Potter gave publishers (the idea) that, in some cases, there's a better market for a book that's put into teen spaces than adult spaces," says Trevor Dayton, vice-president of kids and entertainment for Chapters/Indigo. He notes that recent years have seen marked growth in "crossover" titles with special-edition book jackets designed for an older audience, greater maturity in graphic design, and marketing campaigns that speak to readers in wider demographics.

Banned author criticizes decision

Banned author criticizes decision

The original article may be found here


This article, which appeared in the DailyComet, Lafourche parish, Louisiana on Friday October 17th, discusses reaction of a books' author to the banning of his book titled “Black Hawk Down”, which was used as the basis of the Ridley Scott movie of the same name. The book was assigned to a 10th grade class, and a parent objected to the strong language used in some of the combat situations, the principle agreed and banned the book. The author commented in this article that he felt censorship always backfires and hence that there is little point in contesting the book. It offers an interesting look at this unfortunately common situation from the viewpoint of an author.


It is important to note that in this case there is a written policy in place for parent who feel that their children should not be exposed to certain material. This policy states that the principle has the first authority of rejection of material, and if they approve the material the parents may make an appeal. If they decide that the material should be banned, it falls to the instructor to begin the appeal process

Further Reading on this subject:

The original article, also from the Daily Comet, dicussing the specifics of the situation.

Taxonomy upgrade extras: 

Chris Crutcher: It's an Honor to Be Banned

Author Chris Crutcher explains why he considered it an honor to be banned during Banned Books Week.

He writes, "Earlier this week, I got a letter from Mark Rogers, geographic location undisclosed. In honor of BANNED BOOKS WEEK, I thought I'd post my response here. "

Crutcher is the author of many realistic novels including The Deep End, 1991; Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes, 1993; Ironman, 1995; Whale Talk, 2001; King of the Mild Frontier, 2003; The Sledding Hill, 2005.

Books for Girls With a Health Message

Maybe you've seen those Dove ads that are attempting to teach young girls about real beauty in the current atmosphere of skinny models, skimpy clothes, trashy talk and racy behavior?

Well author Addie Swartz felt that something too was lacking in terms of books for pre-teen girls and so she started her series "The Beacon Street Girls" as an alternative to series like "Clique" and "Gossip Girl".

The stories, which revolve around five middle-school girls in Brookline, MA, are shaped by leading experts in adolescent development, with the goal of helping girls build self-esteem and coping skills. Topics include the problems of an overweight girl and cyber bullying. This month the series will launch its latest book, “Green Algae and Bubblegum Wars,” a novel aimed at encouraging girls in science. The book is the result of a collaboration with Sally Ride, an astronaut who was the first American woman to orbit Earth.

More about the series from the Science section of today's New York Times.

Sportswriter Posnanski Pens Paean to Public Libraries

Award-winning Kansas City Star sports columnist Joe Posnanski recently spoke at the Olathe Public Library for Banned Books Week. He has just posted the text of his remarks on his blog. An excerpt:

I still remember how I felt when I was officially old enough to walk to the library by myself. I was 8 or 9 years old, I guess. It seemed like my first moment of freedom. I would go to the library, I don’t know, once a week or so. Maybe not quite that often. Maybe two or three times a month. I loved going to the library. I still love libraries … I wrote much of my first book in a library and most of what I’ve written in my second book* I wrote in the library. I just like the vibe in libraries, the musty smell, the out-of-date books, the ultra-helpful librarians, the way people will generally respect the “quiet in the library” theme, the charming fact that they are still clinging to the Dewey Decimal System. I find that inspiring, really.

High school students defend literature

A group of students stood silent in the Galesburg High School learning resource center Tuesday morning, tape on their eyes and mouths. In celebration of Banned Books Week, Monday through Friday, GHS media specialist Becky Robinson constructed a banned books display in the LRC and invited civics, government and language arts classes to the library for some instruction on censorship. Some of the books students found in the display were surprising.

Report Calls For Overhaul of Federal Student Aid

Via the "Kept up Academic Librarian" comes this posting on a report that calls for the reform of Federal Student Aid.

A group of college financial aid policy experts is calling for a sweeping overhaul of the federal student aid system, including eliminating the federal application for financial aid and helping low-income parents save for their children's education at an early age.

Some interesting ideas mentioned.

Bratz books expelled from US school book suppliers

One of America's largest distributors of books to schools has stopped listing Bratz books, after a campaign from parents saying the characters contributed to the sexualisation of children. The Bratz books are a spin-off from MGA Entertainment's line of Bratz dolls, which variously wear miniskirts, fishnet stockings, bikinis and feather boas.

Teen reality TV star to write YA trilogy

You will need these. And you will need multiple copies of them. For perspective: 1970s - Brady Bunch 1980s - Fame 1990s - Beverly Hills 90210 today - The Hills They will be published by HarperCollins and will be titled "L.A. Candy." Read about it <a href="">here.</a> Buy early and buy often folks. The sullen and embarrassed set (the women, leastways) will be clamoring for them like they were cigarettes and candy-flavored malt beverages.

Scout Helps the Library While Earning His Badge

Weeded books from the Mamaroneck Library found a new home thanks to Eagle Scout Benjamin Bernstein.

Bernstein and about 20 of his friends and family members donated about 3,000 books to the Hispanic Resource Center. The donation is a part of Bernstein's Eagle Scout Service project, which will distribute almost 10,000 cast-off books from the Mamaroneck library to various organizations throughout the community. Bernstein is a volunteer at the library.

The library was trying to figure out a way to put 10,000 outdated books to use as it prepares to break ground on a multimillion-dollar renovation and expansion project next month.

"Explicit" book pulled from middle school library in Marietta OK

Another day, another outraged parent, this time She's in Oklahoma. "It’s, it's awful... It's... I can't believe... I don't talk about that in front of my child -- and I don't expect it to be in a book that she can get from the library. I mean it's just... I'm speechless."

The book -- "TTFN"(-ta ta for now, sequel to "TTYL"- talk to you later) -- came from the Marietta Middle School library, and what's more -- it was on an advanced reading list worth eight points to any student who checks it out and reads it.

A Comic Book Character Makes a Political Endorsement

Check this out. Image Comics 'Savage Dragon' drawn by Erik Larsen shows his support for a certain candidate in Issue 137.

The new issue goes on sale Sept. 3, and one in five copies will have the endorsement cover. NYTimes blogger George Gene Gustines adds "No word at this point whom Superman plans to vote for."

The Debate Over Rating Video Games... In The UK

As gaming in libraries becomes more of a commonplace and less of a radical notion, librarians will be forced to deal with the same kinds of issues they encountered when libraries began to carry movies.

When libraries started stocking VHS cassettes, there was a huge debate over R rated movies. Should libraries stock such films even though many R rated movies garner Academy Awards and other film acclaims? Now the rating issue isn't over R, it's M for Mature. Should a library carry a game or not simply based off its rating? Grand Theft Auto IV is rated M but received accolades throughout the entire gaming world. How reliable is the rating? Do we check it out to minors? And the list goes on.

We've had our share of trouble with game ratings here in the States, so it shouldn't surprise anyone that the good folks over in the United Kingdom are slogging through similar problems.

More from the Beeb.

Librarians Are Paying Attention to Manga

"because"... says Florida librarian David Serchay, whose trip to Comic-con was supported by funding from the Broward County Friends of the Library,
"... the numbers are clear: adding comic-book titles to the shelves puts circulation stats through the roof."

More on librarians at Comic-Con at NPR.



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