Teen Read Week 2009 Reflections

IMG_0120_2TRW was three weeks ago and we had a very exciting program developed for our students.  Instead of the science fiction/fantasy theme “Read Beyond Reality @ Your Library” we had students competing in events based on Reality TV shows.

Monday was “Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?” using an iPhone app I purchased for our program.  Unfortunately, I had an emergency that took me away from the library prior to the program, but my mentor teacher, Mrs. M., and Amy, my library intern, took over.  We used a document camera and LCD projector to project the iPhone app on a screen.  There were two teams of students who took turns choosing and answering questions.   The team that answered the most questions by the end of lunch won goodie bags.

100_2605_2Tuesday was the “Amazing Race” where students competed in a race consisting of four party type games.  The team that completed all four segments first, won the goodie bags.  The challenge was they had to finish one round before they could move onto the next event.  They all got stuck at building a two tier house of cards!  Again, real life interfered with our program in that I forgot I had a class schedule for 5th period.  Our school runs on a 7 period a day schedule with two lunches and an overlapping 5th period class – lunch 1 goes to lunch and then 5th and lunch 2 goes to 5th then lunch – there is a 20 minute time where both 5ths are in session.  So, Mrs. M to the rescue again!  We moved the event into the Family & Consumer Science classroom.

IMG_0131Wednesday was “Survivor” and students had to complete a “Survivor Challenge” involving a puzzle and clue – they had to put the puzzle together to get to the clue, then solve the riddle.  The riddle/clue required the students to use our card catalog to find a specific book on the shelves.  The first team to bring me the trophy cutout from inside the book won the challenge.  I have to give special kudos to Amy, my intern for coming up with such clever clues – each team had a different clue/book so they couldn’t cheat off each other!  First lunch went very well and they solved the clue quickly – however, yes, there was a glitch.  The book was a career book and just that morning the Freshman Academy teachers took all of the books out of the career section and back to the academy wing for a collaborative unit!  Yikes, would this week ever run smoothly?!  Then during second lunch, apparently I didn’t explain the challenge clearly.  After they solved the puzzle, they all thought that was it, I had to re-state the second part of the challenge, solve the clue! Another problem came in that all teams first part of the clue was the same: “The centre of info will help you in your search for victory” – which directed students to use the card catalog “InfoCentre Search.”  However, the second part was different for each team.  A couple of the teams didn’t realize this and were trying to solve another teams clue!

Thursday was “Wagener-Salley Idol” karaoke contest.  This is an activity we’ve done before for TRW.  The teens really seem to like this one, so it’s kinda become a tradition I can’t leave out.

We didn’t have school on Friday.   Overall, I would have to say the week was a roaring success.  Each day we had more students sign up at the last minute to participate.   I think it wasn’t all the due to the programs, but to the goodie bags!  Each bag had a mix of candy, chips, school supplies, and a small token (stress ball, party toy, etc.)  I’ve even had students (the winners of course!) ask when we’re going to have another event like this one.   Again, I have to give a special thanks to Amy for coming up with most of the ideas for the events – I can only take credit for wanting to base the event around the Reality TV theme and the karaoke contest.