January 30, 2011

Grad school reflections: Week 3 of my final semester

This was another busy week between school, work, and everything else! On Friday night I helped chaperone a teen event at the library in which they played life-sized versions of favorite board games such as Monopoly, Sorry, and Clue. We also had options for playing Pictionary and Jeopardy. There were over 60 teens in attendance, which was an improvement over last year's numbers. It was a ton of fun, and it's definitely an event we'll keep putting on. 

My mom came up to visit this weekend since I had a rough week with my fiancee leaving for boot camp. She didn't want me to sit at home and have a pity party. hehe. We went to look at wedding dress ideas (although I didn't try any on yet), and I took her to see the downtown Indianapolis library because it's my dream wedding venue. :) While I was there I went to hear YA author Patricia McCormick speak and got some books signed. (Stay tuned for a giveaway - I grabbed an extra copy of Sold for one of you to win!)

Here's how my classes went this week. 

Youth Services: We had Current Trends presentations, but we did not all get to go on the first night because our class is so big this semester. I really enjoyed some of the ideas for programs and services that my classmates offered - particularly with regards to serving homeschool students, offering gaming at the library, and collecting graphic novels. One classmates also offered some awesome ideas for incorporating the paranormal trend into programming for teens. I'll present my research on teens and eReading soon, but the next time we meet will be for a field trip to the downtown Indianapolis library. The children's area there is amazing!

Electronic Materials for Children and Young Adults: This week the topic was Databases. I've become familiar with several databases while in library school, and I really wish I knew more about them when I was a student! The homework option I chose this week was to compare two databases for young adults. I chose Gale's Opposing Viewpoints in Context and EBSCO's Student Research Center - both are excellent resources, but the former requires a subscription while the latter is available for free for Indiana residents thanks to our state library. I won't bore you with the 1500 words I wrote about the databases, but I highly recommend you check them both out if you plan to work with young adults in a public or school library! 

Adult Readers' Advisory: We had to cram 2 weeks of class into one night because of last week's snow day. We had a guest speaker who showed us a lot of cool things about Wikipedia since we'll all be creating pages for books that don't yet have an entry. We also had a Goodreads tutorial and learned how to add content to our group page. We discussed review sources and the experiences we had when trying to write Kirkus-style reviews. Finally we had our first genre discussion on Suspense and Thrillers. Three students presented on books they read within these genres and discussed their appeal to readers. Next week: Adventure & Romantic Suspense! 


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