Young Adult Reading Club Theme:
Operation Top Secret!
Operation: Top Secret! includes a Young Adult Reading Club and eight programs for teens on topics including espionage, spies, thieves, codes, mysteries, private investigators, strategic games, and superheroes.
Target Age Group
This chapter is written for librarians who work with teens from 7th through 12th grades. Teens who will be most interested in participating in the programs are the 7th through 10th graders and the teens that will be most interested in assisting with the programs are mostly 11th and 12th graders. Both groups will enjoy participating in the programs.
Teens are experimenting with their independence. Establish goals for the Young Adult Reading Club at a variety of reading levels and let them choose how they will participate. Three levels are described below.
For each level, participants receive gifts. Teens can potentially win all three gifts. Ask local businesses for gift certificates. Request that teens not be required to purchase anything in order to redeem the gift certificate.
Level 1: Operation: Top Secret! - Security Pass Required
Goal: Teens read five books of their choice and attend one young adult library event.
Gift: One free book from the library’s bookstore or a gift certificate from local business.
Level 2: Operation: Top Secret - Authorized Personal Only
Goal: Teens read fifteen books of their choice and attend two young adult library events.
Gifts: Two free books from the library’s bookstore or a gift certificate from local business.
Level 3: Operation: Top Secret - Highest Priority
Goal: Teens read twenty-five books of their choice, attend two young adult library events, and write a book review or enter short story contest.
Gift: Three free books from the library’s bookstore or a gift certificate from local business.
Promotion of Programs
To create a buzz about the teen summer events, create promotional bookmarks dates of programs and a separate calendar of events for teens with colorful graphics. Teen Councils, Teen Advisory Boards, and Teen Volunteers can assist in designing and creating the flyers and bookmarks. They also become built-in audiences for events and assist at programs.
Invite teens to sign up for the programs in advance. Give them a flyer as a reminder about the date of the program and a small incentive gift such as a cool pencil or pen with the summer logo. This will help create a sense of importance to the program and it will allow you to develop a list of names and phone numbers of interested teens.
Visit middle schools and high schools during the month of May and distribute flyers and/or bookmarks, discuss the reading club, the summer programs, and the resources that the library has for teens.
Host a short story contest for Teens who visit the library. No judging is needed. Participation is the reward! Post short stories on the library web site or on a bulletin board in the library. Try the following story starter, or invent your own.
When Anna Marie entered her house that cold afternoon after softball practice things didn’t seem right. She thought to herself “What’s missing?” And then she realized what it was. All the pictures hanging on the walls of her families’ home had disappeared and were replaced with...
Solve Anna Marie’s mystery and send or drop off your ending to….
Make friends with the person/s in charge of reporting community events in local newspapers. Invite them to lunch to talk about the teen programs. Gather statistics about teens and reading and promote it to the paper’s education writer.
More information on promotion of teen programs is on the YALSA web site at www.ala.org/yalsa .