OK, not totally down with it, but now that I have your attention… see, at my library, we’re looking hard at what our SRC has become and asking ourselves what we really want for the kids in our community over the summer. And I’m not sorry to say, it’s a heckuva lot more than sitting in a room reading 30 books over the summer – and maybe (eek!) it’s not that at all!
For about 5 years now, I’ve felt like the traditional SRC structure is outdated and only serving avid/passionate readers. And frankly, those readers will read no matter what. What I want for my kids in the summer, is great ways to have fun, get engaged, get involved, meet new people, relax, and through allllllllllll of that, maybe learn a few things. But see, it’s the fun, engaging, involved, meeting and relaxing bits I want to focus on. The reading comes after…or, not at all. I know that’s an insane thing to say as a librarian. But I’m thinking if we get kids interested in doing stuff, then perhaps we can sell them on reading about that stuff they’re doing! And if not, well, they’re still learning and that’s ultimately what we want.
So we’re not even going to take registrations for a reading club this year. Cough cough. That’s right. In fact, I wouldn’t even say we’re doing a ‘reading club’ this summer. We’re headed away from all that in a big way. We’re looking at Maker, STEAM and Digital Learning, people. Bring it ON!
I live in a city where we have a Hive Learning network which is part of a larger ReMake Learning movement in Pittsburgh for kids K-12. And last summer, our city and a ton of organizations (including a few libraries) did the City of Learning thang. 6 cities in the country are involved so I feel pretty darn lucky to have something like this to plug into.
My staff and I are starting a 4-month journey away from SRC. We’re packing up and heading out. I think we’re done here and we’re ready to break out and start a revolution. I’ll be posting in February, March, April and May about what we’re doing (who knows!), where we’re headed (who knows!) and how it’s going to work (who knows!) Maybe you’d like to tag along.