Category Archives: teen program

Reaching Teens at the Library

I recently listened to a webinar about dealing with teens in the library.  The presenter, Erin Downey Howerton, described teens as “adults without adult experience.”  I think she got it spot on.  As someone who works with teens, I try to keep this in mind.  When teens talk to librarians, they aren’t looking for another adult to tell them what to do.  They are looking for someone to recommend a good book, talk about the latest music, or just listen to what they have to say.

A Teen Advisory Board provides teens with a place to share their thoughts about books, music, movies, the library, and life in general.  I hope our TAB group reinforces the idea that the library can be a “third space.”  After home and school, many teens see the library as a meeting place to connect with others, do homework, or go online.  The Ellsworth Public Library Teen Advisory Board, although small, is one of the most rewarding programs for me.  If I could give teens one piece of advice to take with them through life, it would be “DFTBA.”  So, what do these 5 letters mean?  Don’t Forget to be Awesome.  Everyone has his/her own definition of awesome, but in general, I think it boils down to the same concept: do your best, respect others, and believe in yourself enough to take a chance.  No matter what your future goals are, DFTBA rings true for everyone.

Image from Pinterest

DFTBA is John Green’s mantra.  He is the author of many insightful YA novels (including Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns, and The Fault in our Stars) and happens to be the spokesperson for this year’s Teen Read Week.

At the Ellsworth Public Library, the Youth Services Department has a few ideas for Teen Read Week:

In our YA room, we will have a Teen Patron Pick book display (hopefully with some short book reviews by the teens).

We plan to wrap up some YA books that may have been overlooked (due to an unappealing cover or old copyright date) and encourage teens to check out these “mystery reads.”

We are getting a bulletin board for the YA room so we can start a “conversation” (in the form of post it notes) about what teens are reading. For Teen Read Week, we’ll ask them to write down the facebook status for a character in a book they’re reading (this idea was “borrowed” from a Pinterest board about Teen Programs). How do you plan to celebrate Teen Read Week?


Remember “DFTBA!”



Filed under have you heard about this amazing author?, teen program

Zombies on the loose!



No one was safe this afternoon at the Ellsworth Public Library as two zombies and one zombiologist (one who studies the undead) roamed the building, chanting “Brains…BRAINS!”

Despite their fearful appearance, the zombies seemed reasonable and did not actually attack patrons.  Instead, they attended a party to mark the end of the teen summer reading party.

Congrats to all teens who won prizes and participated in the Summer Reading Program!


Filed under teen program

Teen Program: Creature Feature

Cover of "The Blob - Criterion Collection...

Cover of The Blob – Criterion Collection



At today’s teen program, a few brave souls gathered to watch the cult classic The Blob.  Besides being Steve McQueen’s first movie, The Blob is a prime example of a cheesy horror movie from the 50s.

What could make this program better?  Snacks, first of all:




Choosing candy at the snack bar.


M&Ms, and Skittles, and Sour Patch, oh my!




We also took a candy quiz and Maine Coast Cinemas generously donated a door prize (2 tickets, popcorn, and soda).  Thank you,  Maine Coast Cinemas, for your support.

The Blob is my favorite old horror movie from the 50s, what’s yours?










Leave a comment

Filed under teen program

Teen Program: Glow Carnival

Where’s the best place to be on a HOT summer day?  Inside a dark, air conditioned room with plenty of food, glow sticks, and games (with prizes for the winner).  Here are some pictures from yesterday’s Glow Carnival (the psychedelic quality of the photos is due to the dark room):

Everyone just hanging out.


Glow-in-the-dark Ring Toss, complete with black light.

Salad spinner Spin Art.



Awesome prizes 🙂

Thank you, Katie, for the pictures and for putting together such a fun event!



Filed under teen program