You are now entering the kids’ zone


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10 slides about what happens in the kids' areas of public libraries and why rampant weeding of materials is required in these areas.

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  • -explain use of areas before going further-myriad activities make this different than other parts of PL-among them, group activities: some have special rooms with doors to contain noise others, like this slide show, don’t-singers, crafts, read alouds, book groups
  • -kids and their caretakers take up space-strollers, diaper bags, juggling multiple kids-kids and adults more likely to lounge around here-shelving has to be low, so inability to build UP requires more floor space
  • -generally accepted that certain kinds of PLAY are precursors to literacy-hands on manipulables help build small muscle control which is necessary to turn book pages and hold a pencil-ordering parts of a whole, like putting red blocks with red blocks, is a pre-literacy skill-general play helps with socializing kids and readying them for controlled learning atmosphere like school-these activities take yet more space
  • -kids just take more space-not concerned about space bubbles or blocking the flow of foot traffic through a section of the PL-if they find a book they want to open, we don’t want to stop that from happening because there are no available chairs for their butts-Groups fun, browsing and lounging, playtime and reading . . . This is what happens in kids’ areas. Which all takes up a lot of . . .
  • -with kids and their caretakers and all the activities taking up room, it sometime leaves little for the work of the librarians-some PLs simply don’t have the room for all of these things and have to prioritize.-which is why my evaluation of the article Leah presented is that it’s dead on. I am an avid weeding fan and agree with the author that regular weeding strengthens children's areas
  • -for one thing, shelves stuffed with materials make it hard for youngsters to see anything that looks appealing. These books might be full of bright colors and fun stories, but a little one can’t tell when materials look like this.-for another thing, kids’ materials see some hard use. Pages tear, are chewed and used in play. Circulation is generally very high with materials passing thourhg many sets of hands in relatively short time spans. The materials have pretty short shelf lives, so to speak.-also, when materials are displayed too densely, little fingers, many of which aren’t yet capable of turning pages, cannot grasp tightly shelved books.-all this speaks to why collections must be weeded—to allow for browsing and self-service
  • As an aside, there are some quick fixes to the problem we saw on the previous slide. Shelves can be repurposed more easily when they aren’t packed to the gills with materials.
  • Good weeding might make it possible to move out older linear shelves and move in more kid friendly furniture.Here we see book covers facing the children and eye level and shelves that allow for selection of individual books.
  • So, I, like our author, am pro-ruthless weeding. Weeding in the garden – do it so flowers can grow, and you can see them! These quotes are from a text book previously used in the youth Services Management class. Now you know which side of the debate I come down on.Since making this presentation, I’ve come across 2 other quotes that I want to share that also make the point of weeding avidly and without remorse in children’s areas: 1) Fasick 2) JohnsonI hope that you see how areas of PLs used by younger patrons need a special kind of tending, one that is, I suspect, very different from what we’ll hear from the academic librarians shortly
  • You are now entering the kids’ zone

    1. 1. You are nowentering theKids’ Zone:GROUP FUN!
    2. 2. Browsing and Lounging!
    3. 3. Playtime!
    4. 4. Plain Old Reading
    5. 5. But all these great literacy andpre-literacy activities take uplots of SPACE . . .
    6. 6. And a lot of children’sareas look like this . . . No room for Group Fun No room for Browsing and Lounging No room for Playtime No room for Plain Old Reading Not to mention that there’s barely any room to WORK.
    7. 7. Q: What’s on the shelf for me today?A: Hard to tell. I don’t see any colorful covers begging for attention.A: Some of the spines are so worn I can’t even read the titles.A: The shelves are so crowded my little fingers can’t pull the books out.
    8. 8. Same shelves—used differently— need more SPACE to showcasepopular, timely and timeless titles
    9. 9. Best SPACE scenario: new shelving showcases beautiful, thoughtful collectionsBright, crisp titles stand out Weeded shelves are easier to navigate
    10. 10. THE WARY WEEDER:“*I+ dont like throwing materials away for fear that theymay be useful some day.” (145)THE WEEDAHOLIC:“The problem with not weeding is that children find itmore difficult to find the good books in the forest of old,damaged, or unattractive books left in the collection.” (145) Fasick, Adele M, and Leslie Edmonds Holt. Managing Childrens Services In the Public Library. 3rd ed. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited, 2008.