Children’s Librarians and the Future

John Bylberg made a good point when he said the other day:

I’ve often thought (and I’m sure I’m not alone) that the future of libraries rest in the hands of our children’s librarians. It’s actually quite poignant how that army of burden has been routed to a group of librarians who probably never considered that they would be given that kind of responsibility.

He wrote this in response to a Wall Street Journal article about young people’s library use.

He is right of course. It made me think of the emphasis I have seen lately on teen programming in the library and that we should start to mirror some of that programming for the younger kids as well. Do we have computers just for kids to use? How restricted is their time on the computer and what can they access?

It would be wonderful if we could offer internet workshops to children, even very young ones. If they are old enough to be online, they are old enough to start learning about information literacy, online safety, and online etiquette. I continue to see lamentations about our young people’s lack of information literacy skills, even at the the college level, and starting the conversation when they are young would be beneficial to all.

For tweens and teens, you could have web design and internet safety classes. Some of the classes could even be run by other teens. What a fun and rewarding program that would be to run!

–Jane, it’s not just storytime anymore

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