Category Archives: Activities

Interactive Display: Where Would YOU Like to Live in the FUTURE?

This interactive display has been more popular than I ever expected, a simple question: Where would YOU like to live in the FUTURE? and then four options of future residences with little laminated astronauts for participants to stick under their choices rapidly mushroomed.

I could not cut out astronauts fast enough to keep up with demand (I eventually dragooned two colleagues in to help me keep up with demand), currently close to two hundred library patrons of all ages have participated in voting as can be seen in the image above.

If anyone would like to make their own display they may download images below. For the first time I have made downloads available in US and UK paper sizes:

US Letter size

Download (PDF, 1.3MB)

UK A4 size:

Download (PDF, 1.19MB)

The astronaut template page can be photocopied to make extra astronauts

Library Island by Matt Finch

Library Island is an activity which simulates five years in the life of a nation’s library services. Participants become librarians, government officials, or community members on this island and face the challenges created by conflicting wants, needs, and limited resources. There is an Indigenous community and colonial history to be reckoned with, plus a range of political interests with their own agenda for the library.

It’s a simple game played with nothing more than office furniture, pens, and paper, but it swiftly leads to rich and complex scenarios. The fictional setting allows us to explore structural issues, political challenges, and even some of the disruptive behaviour that professionals may face from their users, within the relative safety of a “make-believe” context.

Source: What exactly is Library Island anyway? – matt finch / mechanical dolphin

Matt has provided a toolkit that can be downloaded with full instructions on how to run, adapt and play the game. It is available here:

https://booksadventures.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/library-island-toolkit.pdf

Space-related Ideas for Libraries

NASA

NASA Selfie App: available for iPhone & Android https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=7220

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory education website: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/edu/learn/

 Straw Rockets: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/edu/teach/activity/straw-rocket/

NASA Image & Video Library – free to download & use: https://images.nasa.gov/

NASA Kid’s Club: https://www.nasa.gov/kidsclub/index.html

Apollo 50thhttps://www.nasa.gov/specials/apollo50th/

European Space Agency

Education: https://www.esa.int/Education

European Space Education Resource Office https://www.stem.org.uk/esero

Music & Songs

Zar and the Broken Spaceship by Dino O’Dell 

Trout Fishing in America – Alien in my Nose

Lyrics: https://www.flashlyrics.com/lyrics/trout-fishing-in-america/alien-in-my-nose-41

Space Day Camp Song Sheet: https://ftclatsopbsa.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/2011-space-day-camp-song-list.doc

Science Experiments

Steve Spangler Science: https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/lab/experiments/

Science Kiddo: https://www.sciencekiddo.com/

Science Bob: https://sciencebob.com/category/experiments/

Science Sparks: https://www.science-sparks.com/category/science-experiments-for-kids/

Imagination Station Toledo: https://www.imaginationstationtoledo.org/educator/activities/

Activity Ideas

Two Book Geeks site: www.twobookgeeks.blogspot.com

Fun with black light flashlight – tide liquid soak glows in uv light https://sciencenotes.org/list-of-things-that-glow-under-black-light/

Post-it note 8bit art https://8-bitart.com/

Glow in the dark slime https://www.thebestideasforkids.com/glow-in-the-dark-slime/

Pre-Kinders Space Activities: https://www.prekinders.com/space-theme/

Nebula in a Bottle: http://www.pbs.org/parents/crafts-for-kids/diy-nebula-jar/

Straw rockets: https://buggyandbuddy.com/straw-rockets-with-free-rocket-template/

Hoop Glider: https://sciencebob.com/the-incredible-hoop-glider/

Stories       

Constellation Legends: http://tcoe.org/scicon/instructionalguide/constellations.pdf

Star tales: http://www.ianridpath.com/startales/contents.htm

Other Resources

CSLP Facebook page – for ideas and links to resources: https://www.facebook.com/cslpreads/

Herschel Space Observatory: http://herschel.cf.ac.uk/education

National Schools’ Observatory: https://www.schoolsobservatory.org/

GAIA in the UK: https://www.gaia.ac.uk/education

National Space Centre: http://education.spacecentre.co.uk/information/learning-resources

Astro Science Challenge: http://www.astrosciencechallenge.com/

UK Space Agency STEM Resources: https://www.data.org.uk/for-education/secondary/uk-space-agency/

Kid’s Astronomy: www.kidsastronomy.com

Rocketry for Kids: https://a2zhomeschooling.com/explore/astronomy/rocketry_kids/

RosCosmos: http://en.roscosmos.ru/117/

Scouts & the UK Space Agency: https://fundraising.scouts.org.uk/ukspaceagency

International Literacy Association: https://www.literacyworldwide.org/blog/literacy-daily/2019/03/05/blast-off!-space-exploration-and-litera

Passive Display Idea: Let fate decide!

A fairly simple idea using origami fortune-tellers (also known as cootie catchers, chatterboxes or whirlybirds) as a passive activity for library patrons to choose books or authors that may be diffrent from their usual tastes. I have included a craft element for patrons that wish to learn how to make their own fortune-tellers to take away. The instructions on how to make and use fortune-tellers can be found below.

Download (PDF, 321KB)

Download (PDF, 316KB)

Chinese New Year Craft: Peppa Pig Lantern

The Chinese New Year begins tomorrow Tuesday 5th February and it is the Year of the Pig. I have created a simple paper lantern craft activity featuring Peppa Pig and her family. This will be suitable for younger Library users.  

“新年快乐” translates as Happy New Year: Xin Nian Kuai Le
Pronounced “sheen neean kwai luh,” kuai le means “happy” or “joyous” and xin nian means “new year.”

You can download a .pdf of the lantern here: Peppa Pig Lantern

Peppa Pig was created by Mark Baker, Neville Astley and Phil Davies.

Peppa Pig‘s trademark and copyright is held by Entertainment One

Feeling crafty?

SearchPress publish loads of amazing arts and crafts books, for beginning projects up to daunting expertise, and they very kindly offered to share a couple of free projects with us to entice you to their website. I know lots of libraries run or host craft sessions, and you will definitely have some manga fans, so have a look for some inspiration…

From Crocheted Cactuses comes this really cute (but baffling to a non-crochet-er) plan for, you guessed it, a crocheted cactus!

They have loads of manga titles, but the pages they’ve shared with us are from How to Draw Manga (in simple steps) by Yishan Li:

There are other free projects available on their website too!

Black History Month Ideas: African American Spies, from the Revolution to the CIA

The CIA has an incredibly interesting article available on their site titled Black Dispatches: Black American Contributions to Union Intelligence During the Civil War

It provides details about African-American spies and the work they did to provide intelligence for the Union.

Spies ranged from Harriet Tubman, better known for her work in helping escaped slaves find their way to freedom on the Underground Railroad to William A. Jackson – a slave in the Confederacy’s presidential household who provided invaluable information to his northern contacts. You can find out about more Civil War spies here.

Still with the CIA, they have a list of operatives who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country: https://www.cia.gov/news-information/featured-story-archive/2014-featured-story-archive/remembering-cias-african-american-heroes.html

Other agents include James Armistead  a slave of William Armistead in New Kent County, Virginia, he volunteered to spy for the Continental army commander General Lafayette. James became a servant to British general Lord Cornwallis, who asked him to spy on the Americans! As a double agent, James gave unimportant information to Cornwallis, while keeping Lafayette informed about British troop strength and positions. James Armistead remained enslaved after the war. In 1784, Lafayette wrote to theVirginia General Assembly, describing his valuable service and asking that he be freed. In 1786, he was freed—and from then on, he called himself James Lafayette.

Born into extreme poverty in St Louis Missouri Josephine Baker went on to become a vaudeville star, was recruited into an all black dance troupe and went to Paris. In 1940 she became a spy for the French Resistance, while she picked up intelligence at parties, her fellow secret agent Jacques Abtey, masquerading as her assistant, recorded the information in invisible ink on her sheet music.

On her return to the USA she fought segregation across the states and ended up on an FBI watch list.

Activity Idea:

There are several methods one can use to make invisible ink:

  • Lemon juice & water – made visible by heating paper
  • Baking soda in water – made visible with dark fruit juice concentrate
  • Write with white crayon – made visible paint over with watercolors

    Once you have decided which technique to use encourage attendees to choose a spy, or more than one if they are feeling adventurous and create an invisible drawing of the agent or write a secret message to a friend hidden in another message.

    They could even create a cipher and make an invisible, encoded message.

  • Black History Month Ideas: The Tuskegee Airmen

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    Black History Month began as a way for remembering important people and events in the history of the African Diaspora. In the US Black History Month is celebrated in February, in the UK it is observed in October.

    This is the first in a series of posts about ideas of activities for BHM 2019 that I am planning on running. I am putting them on TeenLibrarian so that others can make use of them if they so choose.

    Tuskegee Airmen Activity

    The Tuskegee Airmen were African American pilots who fought in World War 2.

    I am planning on introducing them to young library patrons that may never have heard of them, via a display of books and possibly showing one of the films that have been made as well as giving them the opportunity to construct a paper model of a P51 Mustang flown by the Airmen in many of their missions.

    Thai Paperwork have made their model of a P51D Mustang free to download here  it is a fairly complicated model to construct so for younger participants the models below may be more appropriate.

    The Kid Scraps Mustang model is available here 

    Paper Model Airplane also has a simpler version of the P51 Mustang to download here

    Books about the Tuskegee Airmen

  • Who were the Tuskegee Airmen? By Sherri L. Smith
  • The Tuskegee Airmen by Sarah E. De Capua.
  • You can Fly: the Tuskegee Airmen by Carole Boston Weatherford
  • Red Tail captured, Red Tail free : memoirs of a Tuskegee airman and POW by Alexander Jefferson
  • The Red Tails : World War II’s Tuskegee Airmen by Steven L. Jones
  • Tuskegee Airman : the biography of Charles E. McGee : Air Force fighter combat record holder by Charlene E. McGee Smith 
  • Tales of Famous Heroes by Peter and Connie Roop
  • Black Wings : courageous stories of African Americans in aviation and space history by Von Hardesty
  • Black Knights: The Story of the Tuskegee Airmen by Thomas Reilly & Lynn M. Homan
  • Dreaming Eagles by Garth Ennis & Simon Coleby (graphic novel / fiction)
  • DVDs

  • The Tuskegee Airmen
  • Red Tails
  • The Tuskegee Airmen

  • Crafty Scotsman Activity

    An activity for Burns Night or just any time you would like to colour in and dress up a burly Scotsman in a range of exciting outfts.

    Download (PDF, 3.49MB)

    Mobile Library Library Mobile

    Just over two years ago I created a Mobile Library Library Mobile for my daughter’s bedroom, I always meant to make it available on here but with one thing and another I never got round to doing that. Today that has changed, you may now download the mobile below the two pics of the original in action.



    This is an A3 version and is slightly changed from the original design. Early tests showed that while creating a mobile using standard photocopy paper is doable, for a more long-lasting version card works better. Please feel free to add additional library-related things to hang from the mobile and if you do please feel free to share pictures.

    Download (PDF, 669KB)