As an academic institution on the semester system, Banned Books Week tends to be the first big, multi-day event of the programming cycle for the staff at the William H. Hannon Library at Loyola Marymount University. Outside of First-Year Orientation, this is one of our first opportunities to make an impression on our students.
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Fans of Sherlock Holmes, particularly those that love the BBC "Sherlock" series, were invited to enjoy an author Q&A, crafts and an escape room. Texas author Alan J. Porter presented his experiences writing Sherlock Holmes stories, then patrons participated in activities. Crafts included Perler bead character magnets, adult coloring, and decorating mugs and 221B Baker Street notebooks.
Passive programs can be a great way to regularly attract students into the library without having planned, specific events. Pick a corner of the library that can be designated for these drop-by activities, set out the supplies and some instructions, and let it go! Here are a few of my go-to passive programs.
The William H. Hannon Library hosts over 40 programs every year. Like many colleges and universities, Loyola Marymount University has multiple public calendars, bulletin boards and online spaces where students, faculty and staff go to find information about upcoming events. To rise above the surfeit of campus programming options for our users, it's important to make sure each space is populated with library programming information in a timely fashion.
The holidays always bring a lot of traffic to our libraries, and December 2016 was no exception. We offered Light Up The Holidays: Stories and Crafts as a children's program in all of our eight branches and even one of our Bookmobile stops. The program covered four different holidays that fell during the same week last year.
Like the increasingly popular "escape rooms" — in which players solve a series of puzzles to break out of a room — Breakouts use a compelling story, time limit, and series of puzzles to create an interactive game. But instead of breaking out of a locked room, students must work together to break into a tightly locked box before the timer runs out. Puzzles lead to the combinations for the different types of locks, and many games also include a digital element.