A week of challenges

It seems like it has been a long June and it’s not even half over. It’s been busy at the library: school visits, finishing up promotions for summer reading, students coming in to get their summer reading books, packing for a trip to Colorado. That’s right, I’m going to Colorado for a few days in the middle of summer preparations, and I don’t really feel that bad about it!

But the last week has been crazy! I had two school visits in the last week and a half to talk about the books that the incoming 7th and 8th graders have to read. I went with a group of other librarians, so it wasn’t totally the Anna show, but it was still 300 7th and 8th graders. That’s a lot of teens at one time. The visits have been going well – other than a super bitchy looking group of 7th grade school glaring at me from the front row at one school. We try to talk about all 24 books on the list for 7th and 8th grade students and then, if time, talk about the programs at the library. I try to to touch on the exciting ones when I have time – Happy Hunger Games, Zombie Apocalypse, Henna tattoo programs. I’m doing about twice as much programming over the summer as I do during the year, so we will see how that turns out.

Also, I had to prep for a lot of my June programs before I go! Today I’ve been making chocolate frogs, finding recipes for butterbeer, and making Hogwarts house pins for a Harry Potter program on Tuesday. Finding Harry Potter trivia that isn’t super easy or insanely hard was also a challenge. I have to get ready for my Teen Advisory Group (TAG) meeting next week – finding things for them to do and recruiting kids!

What else have I done? I’ve been trying to find a good Civil War set book for a community reads program next year. We’ll be doing three months of Civil War programming including possible Civil War music (I’ll request Ashokan Farewell because I’m a nerd…), a regiment encampment on our library’s lawn, a presentation about period weapons, and lots more! The adults will probably be reading March by Geraldine Brooks or Confederates in the Attic by her husband, Tony Horwitz. For some reason, finding a good YA civil war book is really hard. I can only think of The Red Badge of Courage – which no one will want to read due to it’s inclusion on so many summer reading/class lists, anything by Ann Rinaldi – which are very girl-centric or Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson, which isn’t actually about the Civil War at all. Oops. Thoughts anyone? I’m still working on it, too.

So that’s been my week before I go to Colorado (also known as the “True America” by my dearest boyfriend). It should be great, I mean I get to go back to my favorite airport.

Just look at the beauty!

Whipped cream mountains! (From Flickr user david_jones)

Lovely murals about peace? Or Nazis? Or something? (From Flickr user dmountain)

One last thing: Currently reading Olympos by Dan Simmons, sequel to Illium. There’s no Jesuits in space, sadly, but rather Greek gods (maybe) on Mars, Jews trapped in some sort of phased quantum state in space, large crab-shaped robots who love Proust, and scary monsters who live on crucifixes. Classic Dan Simmons.

One thought on “A week of challenges

  1. Try All Other Nights by Dara Horn. It is fiction, about two Jewish teens on either side of the civil war. I don’t think it is written for teens, but I don’t remember a ton of graphic content. Could be wrong there, as I am not always as sensitive as other readers may be. But I liked the story.

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