Happy National Library Week Everyone.
Please Roar today’s guest Teen Librarian Josie Watanabe!
Josie’s been a Youth Services Librarian for six years. She works at Seattle Public Library | University Branch
I really enjoy working with teens because of their passion and personality. In the University District (U District) we are surrounded by private, public and alternative schools and so we get a great mix of teens using the branch. The U District also has a lot of amazing services for street youth. My absolute favorite thing is working with street youth and the organizations that serve them.
Readers Roar. Let’s hear from the teens!
“I like libraries because I can read stuff for free. I like being surrounded by knowledge”.
~Oliver H. | Library Blogger
“I like libraries because they allow the expansion of reading opportunities. Whenever I go to the library I am surrounded by a new variety of books about anything and everything I could ever imagine.”
~Andrea N. | Teen Volunteer
“I like the peaceful atmosphere of the library.”
~Jin H. | Teen Volunteer
A few years ago I had a teen volunteer go on a wild stickering streak with our uncataloged books. Uncataloged books are books that people take from the library on the honor system. Typically, teen volunteers put a large rectangular sticker on the bottom left hand corner of each book. One week (at the beginning of spring) we had a ton of donated romance books that needed to be stickered. The volunteer went on a wild stickering fling and covered each and all of the romantic faces with a large rectangular pink sticker. For a few weeks our romance readers had to use their imaginations when picturing the characters!
A Lion’s Pride of Programs
As far as programming, the Seattle Public Library has suffered from tremendous budget cuts since 2009. Sadly enough, it has been the Teen Service Librarian positions that were dramatically affected. Our library board has recently adopted a new Strategic Plan that really focuses on youth programming, teen involvement and innovation and technology. I am hopeful that we will be able to bring back some of our popular programs and create many new and exciting programs in the near future.
Our digital media collection hasn’t suffered as badly and is becoming a great service. We have just started offering a free music from Freegal. The music comes from the Sony music library and the music does not expire or implode! Freegal is really easy to use and has been very popular with all ages!
Although our budget has been tight, I still am able to get out of the building to do outreach (thank goodness!); one of my favorite places to visit is the Sanctuary Arts Center. The Sanctuary Arts Center is a place for street youth to hang out and create art. Their mission is to provide a safe, warm and calm environment for homeless and street involved youth to experience creativity and success through the use of various artistic media. They completely succeed!!! Here are some examples of youth created art.
If you are ever in Downtown Seattle for First Thursday,drop by their art gallery in Pioneer Square. You can pick up some amazing art and have a silk screened t-shirt made to order! For more details go to: www.sanctuaryartcenter.org or contact Caroline Falt, Program Director/Volunteer Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org
Book Brag: What three books are hot this year? Why?
Clockwork Angel, The Infernal Devices Book 1 by Cassandra Clare. This book takes off from the first page and never stops.
Alice I Have Been: A novel by Melanie Benjamin. This work of fiction is written from the perspective of the real Alice from which Lewis Carroll based his character on for the book Alice in Wonderland. I think this book is destined to be a cult classic!
~ Josie W. Teen Services Librarian
Teen recommend, “Psyren is being serialized in Shonen Jump and the first volume will be released next month. I predict Psyren will be a hit this year.”
~Oliver H. Teen Blogger
I love authors who are engaging and enthusiastic. Hearing about the writing process isn’t always fun for teens, but hearing about the author’s life and how she integrated those experiences into a book is very inspiring! We also love swag!!!
Blog: Push to Talk
Library Website: www.spl.org
Thank you, Josie for your terrific interview!
Love Libraries? Give a Roar in “Comments” below.
Note to Librarians: If you’re a Youth Librarian working in a school or public library we’d love to hear about you and your library. Contact Janet at email@example.com to set up an interview.