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Lego® Play: Implementing a Culture of Creativity & Making in the Academic Library

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May 2015 “Lego® Play: Implementing a Culture of Creativity & Making in the Academic Library”. Invited Speaker at Westchester Library Association (WLA) Annual Conference. Tarrytown, New York.

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Lego® Play: Implementing a Culture of Creativity & Making in the Academic Library

  1. 1. LEGO® PLAY: IMPLEMENTING A CULTURE OF CREATIVITY & MAKING IN THE ACADEMIC LIBRARY MEGAN LOTTS, ART LIBRARIAN RUTGERS, THE STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW JERSEY @MCLotts
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION • Outreach, Engagement, Making, and Creativity & Innovation in Academic Libraries. • Creativity & Making can stimulate broader conversations among patrons and Library employees about the value of the libraries. • Making spaces can be scholarly, fun, affordable, and a new way to engage w/patrons and connect to communities. • I’m trained as a painter & installation artist and I spent many hours in college working in academic libraries. @MCLotts
  3. 3. HISTORY OF MAKING- HTTP://WWW.AMERICANLIBRARIESMAGAZINE.ORG/ARTICLE/MANUFACTURING-MAKERSPACES • 1873- Gowanda, NY The Gowanda Ladies Social Society formed to quilt, knit, sew, socialist, and talk about books. In 1877, it became the Ladies Library Association, receiving state library charter in 1900 as the Gowanda Free Library. • 1960 Nebraska Library Commission Funded for FY1960 by the Library Services Act of 1956, the Nebraska Library Commission (then known as the Nebraska Public Library Commission) in Lincoln hosted a variety of special activities, including creative arts, that were organized by area groups. • 1976 The tool library The Rebuilding together Central Ohio Tool Library was created by Columbus as the tool-lending library with a federal community development block grant. In March 2009, Rebuilding together central ohio took over operation of the library. • 1979 Merrimack (N.H.) Public Library the newly renovated and expanded Merrimack Public Library opened with a children’s craft room, • 2011 Fayetteville (N>Y>) Free Library Makerspace the first 21st century makerspace opened in the Fayevetteville Free Library. It was the first of its kind in a public library and includes a 3D printer that works in a mobile capacity. @MCLotts
  4. 4. MAKERSPACES- Editorial Board Thoughts: Libraries as Makerspaces? By Tod Coegrove (U of Nevada) ejournals.bc.edu/ojs/index.php/ital/article/.../3793/pdf • “making as a gateway to deepen engagement in science and engineering but also art and design. Makerspaces share some aspects of the shop class, home economics class, the art of studio and science lab.” Do Makerspaces Add Value to Libraries? By Janet L. Balas http://teamhughmanatee.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/do-makerspaces-add-value-to-libraries.pdf • “Libraries are not just places for quiet study of scholarly materials but they can also be places where the creation of audio or video presentations can take place. In the case of some extremely innovative libraries, they can also be places for making actual physical objects.” @MCLotts
  5. 5. MAKERSPACES- IN ACADEMIC LIBRARIES Making Things in Academic Library by Maura Smale- 2012 http://acrlog.org/2012/10/16/making- things-in-academic-libraries/ • “essentially it’s a place for folks to make things, perhaps writing and illustrating a zine, using the open source Arduino computing platform to program a robot, screen-printing, or creating model houses with a 3D printer. Makerspaces often include tools and equipment that are to expensive or specialized for most people to have in their homes, as well as provide a gathering place for like-minded hobbyists to create and collaborate.” Makerspaces Move into Academic Libraries by Erin Fisher- 2012 http://acrl.ala.org/techconnect/?p=2340 • “Makerspaces emerged around 2005 as an offshoot of the Do-it-Yourself (DIY) movement. A makerspace often includes a 2-D printer, digital media and fabrication software, tools for welding, woodworking, and soldering, traditional arts and craft supplies and other electronics”. • “they provide opportunities for people to learn with their hands” • “The academic landscape is shifting from a traditional teaching culture to a learning culture. A teaching culture consists of an expert transferring knowledge to student, whereas a learning culture utilizes active learning techniques” @MCLotts
  6. 6. IMPLEMENTING A CULTURE OF CREATIVITY: POP-UP MAKING SPACES AND PARTICIPATING EVENTS IN ACADEMIC LIBRARIES HTTP://DX.DOI.ORG/DOI:10.7282/T3D2208V @MCLotts
  7. 7. HOLIDAY CARD MAKER SPACE ALEXANDER LIBRARY- RUTGERS @MCLotts
  8. 8. EDIBLE BOOKS SIUC & RUTGERS @MCLotts
  9. 9. POLYNOMIOGRAPHY LIBRARY OF SCIENCE & MEDICINE (LSM)- RUTGERS @MCLotts
  10. 10. POP UP MAKING SPACES • We are more likely to learn or come back when we are having FUN! • Creativity, making, & engagement helps build critical thinking skills & these are skills that are applicable to library research. • Creativity, making, and engagement creates community. • Cross- Discplinary collaboration is a must. • Low cost, easy to take up & down, small space to store @MCLotts
  11. 11. LEGO® PLAY: IMPLEMENTING A CULTURE OF CREATIVITY & MAKING IN THE ACADEMIC LIBRARY HTTP://DX.DOI.ORG/DOI:10.7282/T3C53NJD @MCLotts
  12. 12. HOW THIS ALL BEGAN… THE I2C2 CONFERENCE IN MANCHESTER, UK • LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® http://www.seriousplay.com/ • This workshop involved participants building models about their work existence and the challenges we face as we seek to make our library services more innovative @MCLotts
  13. 13. IMPLEMENTATION • Installed in August 2014 • Used existing table in Art Library • Created signage • All Legos were upcycled for project @MCLotts
  14. 14. PRESS Check out Rutgers Today https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZHhlwoy9Yc @MCLotts
  15. 15. PRESS @MCLotts
  16. 16. BLOCK PARTY Scarlet Knight Days, models created by library faculty, library staff, graduate students, and undergrads @MCLotts
  17. 17. LEGO CHARACTER CONTEST @MCLotts
  18. 18. @MCLotts
  19. 19. CREATE YOUR IDEAL LIBRARY CONTEST @MCLotts Mason Gross Printmaking class.
  20. 20. SAS HONORS COLLOQUIUM SECTION 10 • Thank you so much! My partner and I were playing with the legos for at least two hours. I even snapchatted my lego model to all my friends. @MCLotts
  21. 21. LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE EDA COURSE • Way to connect with Landscape Architecture Freshman. • Gets Landscape Architecture students into the Art Library which is on a different campus than their studios. • Working with Faculty, Students, and Staff in Landscape Architecture helps me better understand the needs of their department. @MCLotts
  22. 22. LEGO WORKSHOPS RUL FACULTY & STAFF • Team building & learning hands on • Creative thinking about library resources & spaces @MCLotts
  23. 23. ACADEMIC COACHES RUTGERS LEARNING CENTERS • In January 2015, team building lego workshop with 6 Academic Coaches for a Lego workshop including an introduction to the library & Info Literacy skills @MCLotts
  24. 24. RUTGERS DAY BUILDING KNOWLEDGE THROUGH IMAGINATION @MCLotts
  25. 25. COMMENTS @MCLotts Comments from collection box between Aug. 12th, 2014- Jan. 12th, 2015
  26. 26. CROWDSOURCED IMAGES • Crowdsourcing of images has primarily been images taken of table on daily basis. • Most people were more than happy to allow me to take their picture • I’m concerned I choose the wrong social media platform. @MCLotts
  27. 27. ART LIBRARY LEGO PLAYING STATION @MCLotts
  28. 28. ART LIBRARY LEGO PLAYING STATION @MCLotts
  29. 29. ART LIBRARY LEGO PLAYING STATION @MCLotts
  30. 30. ART LIBRARY LEGO PLAYING STATION @MCLotts
  31. 31. WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT • We are more likely to learn or come back when we are having FUN! • Creativity, making, & engagement helps build critical thinking skills & these are skills that are applicable to library reseach. • Creativity, making, and engagement creates community. • Making with others can be inspiring. • All people have a voice & want to be heard. • There’s a lots of ways to make or create scholarship. @MCLotts
  32. 32. ASSESSMENT • Documentation- Analyze the images • Surveys • Monitor the Facebook page for “Lego” • Observation & stories • Counting reference questions @MCLotts
  33. 33. HOW CAN YOU MAKE IT HAPPEN.. • You don’t need any money to create Lego Playing Station but you will need Legos & a table (or any making events for that matter) • Marketing & Outreach. • Cross-disciplinary collaboration is good. • Incentives can help. @MCLotts
  34. 34. CONCLUSION • Art Library Lego playing station has explored & expanded conventional research functions of an academic library through encouraging creative and problem solving techniques associated with Art & Design. • Legos can be an international 3-Dimensional language that uses hands on active learning to communicate and build critical thinking skills, as well as an activity that makes people happy. @MCLotts
  35. 35. CONCLUSION • Art Library Lego Playing station has been a catalyst for building bridges and making connections with students, faculty and staff on the RU campuses, which has led to a greater understanding of the possibilities of an Academic Research Library and how the act of making and implementating a culture of creativity can influence library patrons. @MCLotts
  36. 36. FINAL THOUGHT One of the most interesting parts of this project is coming into the Art Library every day to see what has transpired at the table. Some days it appears that a group of grubby young children have been let loose at the table and Legos strewn everywhere, including the floor. Other days the author finds elaborate models that tell stories about the students, their lives, their imaginations, and their dreams. @MCLotts
  37. 37. QUESTIONS Megan Lotts, MFA, M.L.I.S Art Librarian Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey (848)932-7189 megan.lotts@rutgers.edu www.meganlotts.com link to work in RUcore http://soar.libraries.rutgers.edu/bib/Mega n_Lotts/ like the Rutgers Art Library facebook page at www.facebook.com/rutgersartlibrary @MCLotts

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