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Teen Read Week Video Contest

Jacksonville Public Library, Main Library Teen Department
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Innovation Leader: Keli Likins, Senior Librarian, klikins@coj.net

Problem Statement

Many teens do not read for pleasure. They see reading as a chore or something they only have to do for school work. It can be a challenge to draw teens into the library to use our space and resources as well. Our goal with this program was to get more teens interested in reading to help build a life-long love of books. We also wanted to draw teens into the library who might not normally have used our facilities or services before.

Innovation

Asking local teens to create a two-minute or shorter commercial about their favorite book gets them talking about reading as something fun to do. It also gets them to use the library and to see it as a place that is worth spending their time. Sharing the created videos on our teen Youtube account, as well as attaching them to each perspective title’s record in our catalog, has dramatically increased the collection’s exposure and the videos are viewed by many other teens. The teens who view the videos online may become interested in reading books that they might have not previously considered. These videos have had a total of 750 views within a four month time period.

Progress

The teens who participated in this program were very excited to be given the opportunity to make a video about their favorite book. The public recognition of their love of reading through the posting of their videos really gave them something to be proud of. We also held a Teen Read Week Video Contest Reception where all videos were played on a loop during the program with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners being highlighted. We were able to play a video of Mayor John Peyton speaking on the importance of reading. He was also one of our esteemed judges. Thanks to a generous donation from Fidelity Investments, we were able to give away an iPad for 1st place, an iPod touch for 2nd and an iPod classic for 3rd. We hope to continue this program every year for Teen Read Week in October due to how much it was enjoyed by the young people in our community.