Monday, March 19, 2012

Day 6...This is it..

     Well, after 6 days in Philadelphia, it's time to wrap it up.  I attended two very informative and interesting sessions today.  The first session was all about programming for parenting and pregnant teens.  From this session I got a lot of great ideas on songs and finger plays to implement into my own story times.  I am also very interested in starting a story time for this portion of our community.  An audience member did ask how one is supposed to program for this community while simultaneously reminding teens that we are not condoning the behavior.  I, personally, agreed with the facilitators when they stated that the teen is already a parent, we as librarians need to teach them the importance of early literacy while also showing proper ways to interact with their children.  This is definitely something I am interested in undertaking when I get back to MPL.

     My last session at PLA was probably one of the most important for MPL.  I attended a session called Teen Speak.  It was all about teenagers and how to deal with them while also trying to keep them as continual library patrons.  If you have ever been to the Mooresville Public Library after school, you would know that we are swamped with teenagers.  Now, not all of our teen patrons are troublemakers, however, it seems that whenever more than two get together, we have problems.  In this session, I learned great ways to speak to teenagers without making them feel less than human.  I realized that teenagers are at a weird place in their lives because some are treated as an adult at home, but when they enter the library, because we see them as students, they are treated as children.  As the facilitator mentioned, this back and forth is hard not only for the teen, but for those who are interacting with them as well.  I am excited to take this information back to MPL and discuss what we can do for our teens.

     The last thing on the agenda was to listen to the closing speaker Betty White.  Diane and I went to the ballroom to listen, however, we had to leave before she took the stage due to our flight schedule.  Ms. White was supposed to take the stage at 11:45am, however, when she still had not come on by 12:05 pm, Diane and I decided we need to get a cab to get to the airport.  I am really sad about missing the opportunity to hear Betty White speak, I am sure it was hilarious, however, Diane and I are both ready to get home.  She was excited to see her kids, and more importantly her grand babies, and I was excited to get home to my boyfriend and puppy!  But most importantly, I am ready to sleep in my own bed! Ok, ok, that's probably not what is most important, but it's definitely a perk.
     One reason I posted all about this trip is that I really wanted to remember what I learned through this trip.  But most importantly, I wanted to give my readers a chance to hear more about what other libraries are doing.  I think it is really important that we have a dialog with our patrons and I hope some of the ideas I mentioned here are of interest to our patrons.  If you know someone who would like for us to start a special needs story time or even a pregnant or parenting teen that is in need, please feel free to send them our way.  Thanks for stopping by over the past week to check up on Diane and I during our many adventures.  We learned a lot, had a great time, and are excited to return to share the many things we learned.

     Time to log off, the captain of our plane just made the announcement we as making our descent!  Almost home and just in time for St. Patrick's Day!

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