Boston Public Library
Press Room

Posts Tagged ‘Children and Teens’

Central Library Renovation Profiles: Angie Ortiz, Teen Central’s 2015 Summer Intern

Posted on August 26th, 2015 by admin in General

IMG_6614Angie Ortiz, 18, is a recent graduate of Boston Arts Academy. This summer she worked as Teen Central’s Boston Youth Fund Summer Intern. Here, she reflects on her experience.

What was your role at Teen Central?

As Teen Central’s BYF Summer Intern, I assisted with classes in the digital lab. I really liked to help with animation and iMovie programs and to show teens how to make storybooks for animation or trailers. It was cool for me to see them apply what they learned into something that they enjoyed making. I also assisted with shelving and pulling books, and I blogged about video games. I also helped with expanding our technology and media lounge. For instance, I had teens vote on what games they’d like to see added to our game collection.

IMG_05460How long have you been visiting Teen Central?

I’ve been coming to the Boston Public Library for a long time with my mom.* I’d hang out in the Teen Room before it was renovated. When I got a little older, I stopped coming, but when I heard about the renovations I had to come back to see what it was like. I thought Teen Central was so cool, and I wanted to work there. I was president and founder of my high school’s gamers club, and when I saw all the awesome resources in Teen Central’s Lounge, I brought the club there for our meetings. They really liked it, and a lot of the kids started hanging out in Teen Central on their own.

When you weren’t working, what did you like to do in Teen Central?

I liked to hang out in the Lounge, but I also liked to use the programs in the Lab. I used Photoshop to illustrate, paint, and animate GIFs. I met with friends here, and we played board games and card games. I also checked out books here.

How does this renovation benefit you and other teens?

It’s a friendly, expansive space that is welcoming to teenagers. It’s a safe space. The librarians are very helpful, and always have been. One of my favorite parts of the renovation is the addition of technology. That’s a big deal, as most occupations now require computer knowledge. There are still some teens who don’t know how to use computers, and a library is a great space for them to learn how to do that.

IMG_005536What are your plans now that you’ve graduated high school?

I’ll be attending Lesley University on a full scholarship to study animation in the fall. I want to go into game animation. There’s a huge gap of women in the video game industry, and I want to create more female protagonists and stronger representation for women in games.

What books would you recommend to other teens?

The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan. It’s part of the Heroes of Olympus series, a sequel to the Percy Jackson novels that I read when I was young. The books are about a boy who doesn’t fit in at school but found a place where he belonged and was a hero. I was having a hard time at school, and the Percy Jackson books inspired me to go to Boston Arts Academy, where I founded the gamers club and made a lot of friends. The main characters are funny, regular teens, too.

*Angie’s mom is BPL Board of Trustees Vice Chair Evelyn Arana-Ortiz.

Central Library Renovation Profiles: Daniel and Dana van Ee, Children’s Library Users

Posted on May 15th, 2015 by admin in General

Daniel and DanaFour-year-old Daniel and his mother Dana, originally from Liberia and now living in the Back Bay, are frequent visitors to the renovated Children’s Library.

What do you like about the Children’s Library? 

Dana: I love everything about it, from the natural light to the colors to the layout and design of the different areas. I like that we can move from playing with puppets to using computers to activities in the program room. There are separate areas for each age group, but the children are not restricted to those areas; I see older children in ToddleTown using the sensory wall to teach the younger ones about magnets or sounds, which is part of the learning process. I also appreciate how all the book shelves are at the kids’ eye-level. This is a magnificent example of what a children’s library can and should be.

Daniel: I like the puppets and the dress up clothes. My favorite puppets are the police officer and the doctor. I like to play builder with the construction outfit. I like how Miss Maggie and Miss Maija and Miss Laura and Miss May talk to us. And I like the computers here. I play soccer and Humpty Dumpty games on the computer. And I do puzzles and play with Mr. Bones on the computer who teaches you about inside your body.

What activities and programs do you like to attend in the Children’s Library?

Dana: We come to the Children’s Library about three times a week. All the librarians put such time and care into fine-tuning beautiful programs for children. We recently attended a wonderful presentation about Georgia O’Keeffe, where afterwards the children made 3D flowers and plants with craft materials. The Museum of Science also visited with a great program about the science behind magic tricks.

Daniel: I like coloring and painting. I made a colorful mask and do many projects. I like to make airplanes and cars with Legos. Sometimes I play with other kids and sometimes I play alone. I met my friend Gwyneth here. The Museum of Science showed us how to make a water balloon pop, and the water popped everywhere. I love the library. The library is awesome!

How does this renovation benefit children?

Dana: The Children’s Library is very welcoming. The open layout of the room means that caregivers and parents can watch their children but give them freedom to roam and explore. I find that many people of different backgrounds and from different Boston neighborhoods all frequent the Children’s Library. It’s a place where children of Boston and the world can learn and grow.

What are your favorite things to borrow from the library?

Dana: We love to check out books and audiobooks. We read together every night. Listening to audiobooks is something we can do together or Daniel can do independently.

What books would you recommend to other kids?

Daniel: The Velveteen Rabbit; We’re Going on a Bear Hunt; Guess How Much I Love You.

Dana: I Can Read with My Eyes Shut! by Dr. Seuss is a great life lesson book, and Martha Ann’s Quilt for Queen Victoria by Kyra E. Hicks is a true story about Liberia, England, and perseverance.

Central Library Renovation Profiles: Laura Koenig, Team Leader, Central Library Children’s Services

Posted on April 30th, 2015 by admin in General

Laura talks about the work that went into the creation of the new Children’s Library.

What is your role in the Central Library Renovation?Laura Koenig

I was a member of the library team that coordinated with the architects on the design of the Children’s Library and Teen Central. I gathered feedback from children, teenagers, and families on what they would like to see in the space and brought those ideas to the design team. I also got to have a hand in all the design elements in the Children’s Library and Teen Central. I took a lead role in the creation of the sensory wall in the early literacy area ToddleTown, which serves not only babies and toddlers but also children on the autism spectrum. I spoke to people who work with children on the autism spectrum and combined that with my own knowledge of early literacy and brain development in young children to make suggestions about how the area could meet the needs of both communities.

What was one of your goals with the Johnson Level 2 Renovation?

My main goal was to create a first-class space for Boston’s children and teens. I also wanted the Children’s Library to benefit kids in all stages of development. There is a huge difference between how a two-year-old and a ten-year-old use a library, and during the design process, we put a lot of thought into how the Children’s Library could serve each age group. The early literacy area ToddleTown provides children ages three and under with a safe space to explore and move; the StoryScape area is for older children to engage in imaginative play with books, toys, costumes, and props; and the tween space gives tweens a place to hang out away from the younger kids, and it’s also where afterschool homework help takes place.

What is your favorite thing about the Johnson Level 2 renovation?

I love the Children’s Library as a whole; my very favorite part is ToddleTown, the early literacy area. It reflects our research into early brain development, and I like that it also addresses some of the needs of children on the autism spectrum. The Public Gardens-themed graphics with details from Make Way for Ducklings are charming, and it is home to one of our three lion cubs. The best part is that it has gotten very heavy use and is beloved by children and parents.

What are you most looking forward to about the next phase of the renovation?

I am excited about the new books and media area that will greet visitors when they enter the Johnson building. I also think the digital labs for adults will be a great addition. The digital lab in Teen Central has gotten a great response, and the next phase of the renovation will make that technology available for everyone.

Renovated Second Floor Media Coverage

Posted on April 8th, 2015 by admin in General

Enjoy the clips and stories below about the Central Library Renovation and the corresponding opening of the new second floor:

• The Bay State Banner: baystatebanner.com/news/2015/feb/25/bpl-opens-new-teen-childrens-spaces/
Boston.com: www.boston.com/entertainment/books/2015/03/02/children-library-bpl-expands-along-with-children-publishing/uayE9fyuhBEoMbiSwMWyOK/story.html
Boston.com: www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/2015/03/03/look-inside-the-bpl-renovated-children-library/w7OO9qvaoT4OYtAkVLD09H/story.html
Boston Business Journal: www.bizjournals.com/boston/real_estate/2015/02/take-a-tour-inside-the-boston-public-library.html
Boston Magazine: www.bostonmagazine.com/arts-entertainment/blog/2015/02/23/boston-public-library-renovation-photos/
Boston Neighborhood Network News: vimeo.com/120410181
BostonZest: www.bostonzest.com/2015/02/colorful-bright-new-community-workspace-at-the-boston-public-library.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feedutm_campaign=Feed%3A+Bostonzest+%28BostonZest%2
BU TV: www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLg4GsZySOs
Don’t Mind the Mess blog: dontmindthemess.com/2015/03/childrens-room-boston-public-library/
The Huntington News: huntnewsnu.com/2015/03/overhaul-modernizes-central-bpl/
Suffolk Journal: suffolkjournal.net/2015/02/boston-public-library-reveals-new-wing-for-young-readers/
• WBUR: artery.wbur.org/2015/02/21/boston-library-renovation
• WHDH: www.whdh.com/story/28168899/newly-renovated-bpl-central-library-unveiled

 Renovation photos

 

Date Set for Opening of Renovated Second Floor at BPL’s Central Library

Posted on January 16th, 2015 by admin in Media Releases

Date Set for Opening of Renovated Second Floor at BPL’s Central Library

BOSTON – January 16, 2015 – renovThe date has been set for the opening of the renovated second floor of the Johnson building at Boston Public Library’s Central Library in Copley Square. On Saturday, February 21, the residents of Boston and beyond will get their first look at the new second floor, which includes a new children’s library, teen area, nonfiction collection, reference services, and a community reading area.

“The opening of the Central Library’s renovated second floor is an exciting preview of what will be a world-class renovation of one of Boston’s cultural gems,” said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. “Libraries are places of opportunity and people of all ages will enjoy the books and programs as well as the family-friendly, state-of-the-art space in Copley Square.”

The Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street, opens at 9 a.m. on Saturday, February 21. Both the Boylston Street entrance and the Dartmouth Street entrance will be open. The celebratory ribbon cutting will take place at 12 p.m. The Mayor is scheduled to attend. (more…)