Teenagers. If you’ve got one in your life, you know that the years between Barbie Dolls and bar hopping can be a tough stage in any adolescent’s life. Heck, it can be a tough stage for anyone within a 12 foot radius of that adolescent. Unpredictable moods, incomprehensible behavior, and oh the attitude. But it’s not all angst and arguments. In fact, there may even be moments when you are truly inspired by your teen. After all, this is the next generation of thinkers, artists, scientists, social activists and entrepreneurs we’re talking about. And yet, that old familiar refrain comes creeping back every summer, mere weeks after the last exam is written: “I’m bored.”
Cue the library. This summer, we’ve got fun on lockdown. And when it comes to teens, we’ve got more than enough to keep them busy — no matter kind of teen you’ve got on your hands.
This year, we’ve taken our Teen Summer Reading Club online, which means that our club is in session 24/7, all summer long. To sign up for the club, just visit wpl-teens.winnipeg.ca, and tell your teen to register using their email address. They’ll receive a weekly e-newsletter featuring quizzes, book picks, teen event listings and more. We’re giving away great prize packs every week! Teens can also enter our online summer contests by sending us their best photos/artwork, top ten must reads, short stories/poems, and book reviews – all of which will be posted on our website! The best of the best in each category will also win a great prize.
For the social butterfly, we also have a few Teen Book Clubs that meet all year round to discuss some of the library’s hottest reads. What a great way to make new friends, and discover some fabulous new books!
If you’ve got a perennial go getter on your hands, why not encourage them to do a little volunteering?! At the library, we’re always looking for teen volunteers – and summer is the perfect time of year to cram a bit of experience onto that resume.
This summer, we’re looking for teen volunteers to help out with Family Literacy Fun Days. Volunteers will assist families with young children at activity stations, doing things like playing reading games and making simple book crafts. So much fun! (Call 311 for more details).
We’re also looking to recruit a few new members to our library’s Youth Advisory Councils. As YAC members, teens do things like plan and run teen programs, read and review books for the library’s newsletter, write blog posts for the library’s teen website, and provide feedback on design decisions for the library’s teen areas.
If your teen loves technology, we’ve got an awesome 3 day teen tech workshop that will cover basic and advanced techniques in photo editing using the open source GIMP software (GNU Image Manipulation Program). They’ll learn some cool application techniques such as creating animated gifs and best-practices for photo blogging. (More info to come in our July/August newsletter.)
Or, get set for beachfront ereading, and let our staff show your teen how to effectively browse the eLibraries Manitoba eBook collection and get the most out of this free service! They can fill up their iPad or eReader with free eBooks from the library, and never again be without a good book in their pocket. (Check for more info in our July/August newsletter.)
At the library, crafty is our middle name. And if your teen has even a hint of Martha Stewart underneath that backwards ball cap, you’ll want to tell them about our craft workshops. We’ll have them doing everything from making their own jewelry to sewing a mini felt mascot. All free of charge!
For something a little bit edgier, but equally creative, check out our Piecebooks Program, led by Graffiti Gallery. Piecebooks are a classic method for urban artists to share and collect artwork, and this summer, teens can learn urban art techniques, including urban writing, stencilling, and marker techniques as we create one of a kind works of art! At the library? Yes, at the library. (Again, check our July/August newsletter for details.)
So before the thought even comes to mind, battle the boredom bug this summer, and encourage your teen to participate in a few of the library’s many programs! There’s bound to be something of interest for your teen!