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Breaking through the Busy: Tips for Getting the Students Who Already Do Everything

klewallen's picture
Students sitting around a lunch table

“Students are too busy nowadays.” I’m sure we’ve all heard it. So here are a few tips — from my own experience and crowdsourced from other very helpful librarians — to break through the haze of busy-ness and reach students.

Middle School Panel

School bus

The Fifth Annual Middle School Panel  was a great opportunity for parents/guardians to hear about the local middle schools and their programs. This program was geared for parents/guardians of fourth- and fifth-graders. 

The event was hosted by the Palms-Rancho Park Branch Library in partnership with 17 area schools and organizations. Program representatives from the area schools addressed parents, legal guardians and students about their respective middle schools in terms of academic programs, resources and performance.

LibraryGame

One finished game made by a student.

The Librarygame project teaches fifth graders the concepts of storytelling, technology and project management through the creation of video games. The program is a collaboration between Sacramento Public Library and local Title I schools, many of which lack the funds to hold this type of program without a partner.

Partnering with Your Local Health Department

nlenstra's picture
Stethoscope wrapped around a stack of books

Public health professionals focus on promoting healthy lifestyles and on protecting and improving the health of families and communities. Nearly every community in the U.S. has a local public health department or some other regional health agency. According to the National Association of County and City Health Officials, there are nearly 3,000 local health departments across the country.

Library Resource Outreach Center/Health Central

Black and white stethoscope

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, homelessness is a public health issue. Central Library, like many public libraries, serves as a daytime shelter for Rochester’s homeless population.

In response, Central created the Library Resource Outreach Center (LROC) and Health Central (HC). The program has no eligibility standards, and no appointments are necessary for users to receive services.

Reading Rocks

Completed rocks for the Reading Rocks program

Waxahachie has a social group called Rocks-a-Hachie, which paints and hides rocks all over town for others to find and re-hide. The 12-year-old founder of this group and her mother came to Nicholas P. Sims Library (NPSL) wanting to do a book-themed rock-hiding project that would get families excited about reading. Several group members painted all the rocks and wrote "return to library" on the back.

Quidditch Clinic

Quidditch Clinic participants

The idea to hold a Quidditch clinic for teens arose from our local teens' excitement for any and all Harry Potter-related programming. We’ve done numerous Harry Potter-themed programs in the past (typically trivia or costumed events), but had yet to tackle Quidditch. We wanted to engage teens that might have an interest in physical activities as this event was in collaboration with our local YMCA. 

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