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In the Digital Age, What Becomes of the Library?

In the Digital Age, What Becomes of the Library?
Nashville’s Main Public Library, located in a stately building in the heart of downtown, has a children’s section filled with comfortable sitting areas, oversized art, and a state-of-the-art theater for puppet shows and interactive story time. On a recent afternoon, children of varying ages were sitting or lying on the carpet, reading alongside rows of books lined on two-tiered shelves perfectly sized for little hands. Two grade-school children sat at a row of computers, playing a learning game, while parents and caregivers checked out books via computer. A line of parents and children waited to speak with one of the two librarians on duty. Something about the scene seemed touchingly retrograde: minus the computers and modern furniture, this could have easily been a library scene from 1980 or 2013. That timeless feeling, said library director Kent Oliver, is because reading, regardless of format, continues to be important. But will that be changing?

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Using Social Media to Engage Teens in the Library “Brother Mike” Hawkins (at left) and YOUmedia’s Spoken Word team at the“Louder Than a Bomb” poetry competition in Chicago, March 2013.Photo courtesy of “Brother Mike” Hawkins. Taylor Bayless, a librarian with the Chicago Public Library’s YOUmedia youth learning space, runs a podcasting program for teens. Since Bayless had no previous experience with podcasts, she was “muddling through” the learning process along with the kids, teaching herself as she was teaching them. What spaces do libraries need? Could you please provide some ideas about the different spots a school library should have? At this moment we only have an AV area that is the reading area as well. We have the computers and in front we have the tables to work and the shelves are distributed around the library. I also have some independent spots with a computer and a table. My library school teacher, Dr.

Do We Still Need Libraries? The New York Times is running one of its Room for Debate series on the future of libraries. The four debaters (so far) are Luis Herrera, director of the San Francisco Public Library (and a board member of the Digital Public Library of America); Susan Crawford, visiting professor at Harvard Law School; Buffy J. Hamilton, a school librarian at Creekview High School in Canton, Georgia; and Berkman fellow Matthew Battles. All four of their essays are excellent.

How To Survive the Zombie Librarian Apocalypse This weekend I had the honor of being they keynote speaker at the Alabama School Library Association Summer Conference in Birmingham, (not Mobile, but that's another story) Alabama. From start to finish, I was so impressed by the core group of librarians who run this state association and who put on a small, but impactful, conference that focuses on supporting new librarians while also challenging all of us grizzled veterans. This is truly a great group of folks and I am super grateful for having had the chance to walk among them for a few days. Anyway, as part of my trip to Alabama, I was given the task of talking to a group of new librarians (those with 0-3 years experience in the library) from around the state about how they should approach their new adventure. I'm not sure if others in the room noticed it at the time, but at that moment a giant, blinking lightbulb went on over my head.

Some design considerations Some Design Considerations When Building or Remodeling a Media Center(also titled “Questions to Ask When Building or Remodeling a New Media Center”) ERIC ED425609, Jan 1, 1998 After having helped plan for six new and remodeled media centers, I have developed a short list of questions that the steering committee needs to answer, and another list of question that need to be asked of the architect or project leader during project planning. As schools change their instructional program and as technology evolves, a simple list of “do’s” and “don’ts” for building or remodeling will be outdated nearly as soon as it is written.

An Office Landscape Designed to Kill Boring Meetings Yves Béhar and Herman Miller are reinventing the office for a more connected generation. Designs become icons when they embody the time in which they were created. The Eames lounge chair represented a midcentury shift to a more casual home life when many people still held “tea times” in formal living rooms. The invention of the Aeron chair in the 1990′s marked an era when a company could show that it cared about its employees by giving them the pinnacle in ergonomic seating.

Teacher Librarians Are Key to the Digital Shift I hate textbooks. When I was a teacher librarian, I engaged in a Sisyphean cycle that included the ordering, distribution, inventory, transfer, repair, storage, and subsequent collection of heavy, sticky, and often obscenely vandalized tertiary sources. One of my first library clerks literally cried when it came time to circulate textbooks. I stoically comforted her as I put my shoulder to another heaving cart. Students checked out textbooks with the same grim resignation they might show when getting a shot.

Library - Facilities Building and Redesigning Libraries Building and Planning Libraries - Web sites for planning, interiors, lighting, standards, and a bibliography of print materials. Facilities Management - This is a very good place to start planning for renovation of old school libraries or planning new ones. Trends in Academic Library Repurposing Ohio University Alden Library Learning Commons This is an exciting time for academic libraries as they change the way they become relevant to student learning. By repurposing spaces to meet the needs of students, libraries are becoming a destination on campus. I recently presented a webinar with Mary Beth Lock of Wake Forest University Library and Mark Haubenschild of Patterson-Pope, summarizing my experience working with over 90 libraries. To stay relevant, libraries are becoming the center for learning on campus.