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September 25, 2007 > Teen Services @Your Library

Teen Services @Your Library

By Gary Morrison, Teen Services Specialist, Fremont Main Library

Fremont Main Library's Teen Services addresses the informational, educational and recreational needs of teens in a variety of ways. The teen materials collection includes fiction, nonfiction, paperback classics, manga, magazines, CDs, and DVDs. Check out movies, music, and books to help with homework, choosing a college, studying for AP tests, or reading for fun. "Teen Scene," on the library's website, includes librarian-selected links to websites that offer reading recommendations, volunteer resources, homework help and college resources. Some homework help resources are for assignments that come from local high schools.

A valuable resource is the online databases to which the library subscribes. With their library card, teens can access resources such InfoTrac, a database containing full-text magazine articles, and Learning Express, which provides timed practice tests for SAT, AP subjects, and more. Other databases cover topics such as biography, history, and literature. These databases provide content from reliable publishers, information that is not available on the open web.

Another relatively new service of great benefit to teens is Live Homework Help, an online tutoring service featuring expert tutors from across the country. Students connect to tutors for one-to-one homework help sessions in an Online Classroom. Students can connect to online tutors for free from 1:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. every day. Simply go to www.aclibrary.org and click on the Live Homework Help link to access remotely with your library card number. You then enter your grade level and the subject in which you need help. In just a few minutes, you'll be connected to a tutor. To get a library card, link to our website at http://www.aclibrary.org/library/get_card.asp, fill out the form and come to any branch with identification showing your name and current address. We also have forms in the library. You'll be able to check material out and use the databases as soon as you have your card.

The library offers teens an opportunity to earn community service hours by volunteering at the library. Teens can also become involved in the library by joining the Teen Advisory Group, which helps plan a variety of programs for teens. Recently they sponsored a poetry slam, a high school advice panel, movie series, and writing contests.

Another relatively new service at the library is IM (Instant Messaging). Available Monday through Thursday from 3-5 p.m., teens can chat in real time with a reference librarian. At a recent national library conference, one speaker observed that, for libraries to be accessible to young people, "Not having IM is like not having a phone." And, according to the results of a Pew/Internet project, 75% of online teens use Instant Messaging.

For more information, please contact Gary Morrison, Teen Services Specialist: gmorrison@aclibrary.org.

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