Passive Programming

Passive programming promotes the library and its materials and services without providing a formal program at a specific time or date. It especially appeals to young adults who spend free time at the library and allows them to interact with librarians and/or other teens in an informal, nonthreatening manner. It may be ongoing or spontaneous. Below are some suggestions for passive programming.

Reader’s Advisory. Read young adult materials. Discuss the books teens have read and suggest similar materials. Be available to talk to young adults individually or collectively.

Review Writing. Young adults are most interested in what their peers have to say about books and other library materials. Invite teens to complete a review form such as the one below, or simply allow them to write down their opinions of library materials. Collect and display the reviews in a Teen Review Notebook and encourage other teens to flip through to find “good books” on certain topics. Publish the reviews in a teen newsletter and/or on your web page.

Teen Tops Voting. Let teens vote for their favorite books, movies, CD’s, web sites, snacks, etc. Ask them to fill out ballots for their favorite mysteries, nonfiction, historical fiction titles, etc. Publish the list of winners as a bookmark, a bibliography or an online booklist.

Choose Your Own Adventure. Write a “Choose Your Own Adventure” for young adults. Or, invite Teen Advisory Board members to write one. Teens who visit the library can read a new installment weekly.

Add a Line (or two) Stories. Write the first line of a story at the top of the front page of a flip chart. Use an enticing introductory line such as those below.

1) The sun began to set just as the five teenagers stepped out of the car. Each peered into the forest, some looking for shelter, others for signs of wildlife, still others for something else. It was going to be two long, hard weeks.

2) The teenage girl ran into the house almost knocking down her twin brother. Holding up a folder she said, “I’ve won! Can you believe it?”

With supervision, allow teens to add a pre-determined number of sen- tences. Encourage them to return throughout the summer to add to the story. Publish the completed story in a teen newsletter or a local newspaper or on the library web page. Distribute copies in the library.

Book Swap Shelf. Designate a shelf or cart for teens to swap books. Young adult paperbacks that are donated to the library may be placed on the swap shelf.

Come-and-Go Crafts and Activities. Prepare crafts and activities and make them continuously available to teens in the young adult department. Alternatively, designate one afternoon a week as a come- and-go activity time. Provide instructions, materials, and lists of related books, web sites, etc. Craft and activity ideas might include beading, mendhi, scrapbooking, scavenger hunts (see example below,) yo-yo tricks, magic, and puzzles.

Scavenger Hunts. Design several sets of interesting questions that teens may answer using either in-house library materials or the Internet. See below for an example scavenger hunt. Give certificates to teens who complete the scavenger hunt.

Video Reviews. Videotape teenagers giving short reviews of library materials. Ask parents to sign a permission form allowing the videos to be played in the YA department for a specified length of time.


Teen Review Sheet

Read a good book or seen a great video and want others to know about it? Want others to avoid a really BAD one? Found a cool web site? Fill out this teen review form and hand it to the YA Librarian. The Librarian will file it in the Teen Review Notebook located on the reading table in the YA Department. Reviews will be filed in alphabetical order by title. Do not fill in your real name. Make up a code name to use on all of your reviews so that other teens will know that the same person has written them. Be honest. You do not have to like the book! Do not use profanity or other inappropriate language.

Date: ____________________________


Reviewer Code Name: ______________________________________________________


Title of Book, Video, CD, or other Library Item: ___________________________________________________________________________


___________________________________________________________________________


Author(s):__________________________________________________________________


___________________________________________________________________________


Material type (circle one): book video audiobook music web site


Material call number or web site address: ___________________________________


Rating (circle one): awesome good OK not-so-good horrible


Comments: ________________________________________________________________


___________________________________________________________________________


___________________________________________________________________________


Teen Scavenger Hunt

Hunt through the library for the answers to these questions. Some are harder than others. If you need any help, ask a Librarian or consult the computers. Bring the answers back to the YA Librarian when you are finished and you will receive a certificate. Feel free to work in groups. Good luck!

1. What are the hours of the library?

2. What is the name of the Library Director?

3. When is the next young adult program?

4. What is the city of Luxemberg often called?

5. When and where was the Declaration of Independence signed?

6. Who wrote The Pigman?

7. Who wrote the words to the song Circle of Life?

8. Who said, “National honor is national property of the highest value?”

9. How many stories were SUPPOSED to be in the Canterbury Tales?

10. How can you drop an egg without breaking it?

11. Who is Frodo?

12. What author coined the term “cyberspace?”

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Page last modified: March 2, 2011