Library Myth Busters

This is an idea I have been working on that can be run with a Reading Group and also for breaking the ice for new users in the Library:

This event can be run by following the Myth Busters format of having small teams investigating various Library Myths and then presenting their findings to the entire Reading Group. If permission can be obtained for filming, a short DVD could be made of the proceedings. This could tie into a larger media and film-making programme that can be run over half-term or summer holidays. It is fun and educational – teenagers learn how the library works and what the staff do all day as well as debunking misconceptions they may have on what goes on in libraries.

Here are a a list of library myths that can either be debunked or confirmed:

  • Librarians have lots of time to read on the job
  • All librarians are fast readers
  • Public libraries are only busy during the school year
  • Public libraries are only busy during summer holidays
  • Libraries are used only by those who cannot afford to buy their own books.
  • Librarians have no stress
  • Librarians have read every book in the library.
  • Librarians know the answer to everything
  • Everyone who works in the library is a librarian
  • Libraries are just about getting books
  • Libraries aren’t necessary because everything’s available on the internet
  • Libraries have plenty of money because they get so many donated books and charge so much in fines
  • The librarian can be held responsible for everything that kids check out because they work for the government and must protect young people from bad things
  • School libraries aren’t needed because kids can get everything they want at the public library or online
  • Librarians wear their hair in buns, have wire-rimmed glasses, and say shhhhh! all the time
  • Librarians only issue books
  • Everything in the library is free
  • You have to know Dewey to use the library
  • Libraries are serious and quiet all the time
  • It is difficult to get a library card
  • Libraries are for English readers only

The list is by no means complete and if anyone would like to add library myths in the comments you are most welcome.

7 Thoughts on “Library Myth Busters

  1. Brilliant idea which kids will love. Nice work!

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  3. This is a great idea! I’m an aspiring teen librarian – really enjoying your blog!

  4. Margaret Simkin on October 29, 2009 at 2:56 am said:

    These are great. Well done. We have just debated having a live up to the myth session here!

  5. Gemma Panayi on November 7, 2009 at 4:56 pm said:

    Fantastic Matthew, really great idea and I like some of the myths eg. Librarians don’t have stress!

  6. Barbara Davey on November 16, 2009 at 11:14 am said:

    Great job Matthew, what about the myth I get all the time, “Librarians know, or should know the author and title of every book in their library”, Help!!

  7. Linda on April 30, 2010 at 1:01 pm said:

    Librarians know exatly what book is needed when the total information given is – ” I need a book for my history project”

    Librarians can correctly answer “you know that book I took out two weeks ago…..”

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