Posted in Makerspace, STEM, Uncategorized

STEM: They are learning TOOLS. Don’t say TOYS

We just unpackaged (and threw into bins) four different types of construction tools into our STEM area of the library. I had to be VERY specific about he expectations, because this “Maker Space” concept is new; it’s just so tricky to demand level one voices on checkout days and allow for the volume level appropriate to mirth on the other days. When I was very clear before-hand it went better. After a particularly raucous session, I told the fourth graders who came in next “this is not a birthday party. This is not a play date ion your friend’s basement. This is us, learning how to problem solve together, and I need a level two voice for this to happen. They were great and I held an impromptu challenge of creating a known structure. Quick as lightning we had the White House and two versions of the downtown Clock Tower. And something else very tall. And I just built my standard lego house. I mean supervised the STEM projects.

Posted in Awesome Apps, Best Books, Makerspace, Trending technology

Pokemon GO read a book!

When you work at a school library, you are constantly working to keep students engaged: in reading, in education-based software games, effective search engines, platforms and apps. We are savvy enough, as modern library information technology specialists, to be happy with ANY attention or foot traffic, and it behooves us to be up with all the cultural trends.

There hasn’t been a more universally loved or enjoyed trend as Pokémon Go in a VERY long time. I love it because my now 16-year-old-son who used to LOVE playing and collecting Pokémon ten years ago, now loves this modern upgrade. I have noticed most of the people obsessed with the game are intrigued in part by the nostalgia. And parents, happy their children are disconnected from PS4 and XBox are echoing a sentiment something like “Well, at least they’re getting outside!!”

pokemon in libraryWhat has put libraries in the forefront of Pokémon Go is that community gathering places, like libraries, are programmed to be “Gyms” for Pokemon battles. They often have a high concentration of more valuable Pokémon as well as upgrades and other tools (Like “razz berries,” Which help capture the more powerful, slippery Pokemon.)

Here’s some examples of tweets sent by bookstores which are, not surprisingly, totally cool with any publicity and traffic:

Get your restock of Pokeballs at the Strand! 🎉 Your favorite literary #PokeStop destination. Plus, you never know what pokemon might be hiding in the stacks. 👀 #PokemonGo #GottaCatchEmAll

If we are in the patrons’ worlds at the time, they will remember! If you are gracious and enthusiastic, they will remember when it is time to hang out, or when the Pokémon Go servers are down (which has happened often) maybe they are more likely to come and check out a book with us! Also read the LA Times article below, it’s just the best!

Pokemon Go promotion