November 27, 2007

Gaming in Libraries LTR Update

my LTR cover Last year I wrote the September/October issue of Library Tech­nol­ogy Reports on Gam­ing in Libraries: Inter­sec­tion of Ser­vices as a gen­eral overview that could help jump­start a dis­cus­sion in a library (espe­cially with a depart­ment head or admin­is­tra­tor). Dur­ing the next few weeks, I’ll be writ­ing an update to that issue, so I’m curi­ous what you’d like to see in this new edition.

My intent is to broaden the dis­cus­sion about gam­ing to include a more holis­tic view of the topic, beyond just video games, as well as diver­si­fy­ing the audi­ence for gam­ing in libraries beyond just teens. So I have a pretty good idea of what I want to write about, and although I’ll have a shorter length to work with (half as long as the first one because Tech­Source is try­ing to reduce the cover price of LTR), I’d still like some input. What ques­tions do you need answered? What do you need help explain­ing to oth­ers in your insti­tu­tion? Which areas need some fur­ther exploration?

I’m also hop­ing to high­light a few more case stud­ies if there’s room. I’m par­tic­u­larly inter­ested in show­cas­ing unique gam­ing ser­vices offered by school and rural pub­lic libraries or ser­vices to non­tra­di­tional patrons, so please let me know if you think you’re doing some­thing good.

Please leave a com­ment and share your thoughts. Thanks!

Be Socia­ble, Share!

18 Comments

  1. We are talk­ing about begin­ning a gam­ing club in our pub­lic high school library. Our school’s Accept­able Use Pol­icy specif­i­cally for­bids games being played on school com­put­ers. We are feel­ing frus­trated because we feel like we need to start there– but chang­ing our AUP may take up to a year as we must go through the school board to make any changes. ugh.
    We are con­sid­er­ing sur­vey­ing the stu­dents as a first step and then tak­ing our data to the school admin­is­tra­tion and see­ing where it goes from there.
    Are there many high school libraries who are gam­ing?
    Do you have any advice on ini­tial steps?

    Comment by Pam — November 27, 2007 @ 7:32 pm

  2. I’m inter­ested in how gam­ing could be rel­e­vant in a VET set­ting (I work in a TAFE library) and many have a nar­row focus of of what con­sti­tutes ‘edu­ca­tional’. I could see a boardgame like ‘Set­tlers of Catan’ being use­ful at a num­ber of levels:

    1) Sim­ple social inter­ac­tion (some­thing that is often underestimated)

    2) Lit­er­acy skills (learn­ing and under­stand­ing how the var­i­ous rules inter­act with each other)

    3) Numer­acy skills (win­ning partly depends on under­stand­ing the prob­a­bil­i­ties of 2 6-sided dice work)

    4) For­mu­lat­ing objec­tives (decid­ing your best method of win­ning and stick­ing to your plan)

    Comment by John Nebauer — November 27, 2007 @ 8:14 pm

  3. […] Gam­ing in Libraries LTR Update » This Sum­mary is from an arti­cle posted at The Shifted Librar­ian on Tues­day, Novem­ber 27, 2007 […]

    Pingback by University Update - Video Games - Gaming in Libraries LTR Update — November 27, 2007 @ 9:49 pm

  4. Hello Jenny, I’d like to see more about col­lec­tion devel­op­ment and main­te­nance issues, espe­cially for games that cir­cu­late. Maybe some­thing about board games too. I’d also be inter­ested in read­ing about which games are most pop­u­lar with var­i­ous age groups: chil­dren, teens, older adults. Thanks! I’m excited that you will be writ­ing a follow-up report to your fan­tas­tic gam­ing issue. Michelle

    Comment by Michelle — November 28, 2007 @ 12:31 am

  5. Hey Jenny–

    I think we’re all going to stake out our niches here, so I might as well give it a shot. Gam­ing in aca­d­e­mic libraries. This is some­thing I strug­gle with due to the fact that it seems that our use of gam­ing in the library is sim­ply social — not tied to aca­d­e­mics. I under­stand there is value in bring­ing stu­dents into the library for more than study­ing, but isn’t there some­thing edu­ca­tion­ally related that we could tie to this?

    ~Kyle~

    Comment by Kyle J. — November 28, 2007 @ 7:52 am

  6. Hi Jenny. I’d like to see some focus on eval­u­a­tion of gam­ing. Fun­ders often want to see quan­ti­ta­tive results that library pro­gram­ming is being put to good use. What proven eval­u­a­tive method­olo­gies can be used to cap­ture some­thing as seem­ingly neb­u­lous as gam­ing in libraries? Chris

    Comment by Chris — November 28, 2007 @ 2:18 pm

  7. Thanks, every­one! It’s inter­est­ing to see the diverse top­ics, although not sur­pris­ing. If I can’t cover these things in the LTR, I have another pos­si­ble way to help answer your ques­tions but I can’t let the cat out of the bag just yet.

    @Kyle: Have you read Paul Waelchli’s blog posts about how he’s tying the ACRL Info Lit stan­dards to fan­tasy foot­ball and Halo? He even used fan­tasy foot­ball in his intro class. Paul’s blog is fas­ci­nat­ing in gen­eral, so I highly rec­om­mend read­ing it reg­u­larly. http://researchquest.blogspot.com/

    Comment by jenny — November 28, 2007 @ 9:57 pm

  8. Hi Jenny. I am a mid­dle school librar­ian in Vir­ginia. I wrote a grant for $1000 to pur­chase a wii and wii games. So far, we have been using video games to entice stu­dents to read books for the Vir­ginia Read­ers’ Choice pro­gram. Last year we had 25 stu­dents who par­tic­i­pated in this read­ing pro­gram. In our first month of pro­mot­ing the VRC pro­gram (using gam­ing as an incen­tive), we had 45 stu­dents who read their first book. They need to read at least 4 books to vote for their favorite. I have also added chess and check­ers to our library. We also plan to buy other literature-based board games such as Harry Pot­ter, Storm­breaker, Nancy Drew, etc. Gam­ing has really helped to improve our image in our school. I would love to hear about other school libraries that are using games to attract stu­dents to their libraries.

    Comment by Lauren Luke — November 29, 2007 @ 8:36 am

  9. I am the librar­ian at the Grand Island Vet­er­ans Home, the largest nurs­ing home in Nebraska, which is home to as many as 250 mem­bers (res­i­dents.) Richard, from the Nebraska Library Com­mis­sion, for­warded sev­eral e-mails to me, about the suc­cess­ful use of Wii with seniors, and sug­gested that I write a grant for the equip­ment. While I was in the process of research­ing Wii, with the help of Susan, also at the NLC, one of our doc­tors per­suaded her friends to donate a Wii con­sole, a TV, an extra remote and some other acces­sories, to be used in our Phys­i­cal Ther­apy clinic. Although it is too soon to know how effec­tive this will prove in the long run, Wii has been used suc­cess­fully with some of our mem­bers. Now, sev­eral other mem­bers of our Depart­ment of Health and Human Ser­vices Library Con­sor­tium and I are writ­ing a grant to bring Wii, through our libraries, to our facil­i­ties, which are home to chil­dren, men and women with vary­ing degrees of men­tal of phys­i­cal dis­abil­i­ties. We believe that the sim­plic­ity and FUN of Wii will pro­vide our patrons with phys­i­cal, men­tal and social benefits.

    Comment by Janice Rihn — November 29, 2007 @ 5:40 pm

  10. Hi Jenny,

    I like the idea of talk­ing about non-video games. If you are going to sup­port gam­ing — and as we know there are great rea­sons to do so — extend it to all ages, not just teens? And all types of games — I can see Flux or Apples To Apples as great games for a library setting!

    Comment by Scott — November 29, 2007 @ 9:33 pm

  11. Hey there Jenny -
    I am with a small rural library in Flo­rence, Col­orado. We Use a Wii, a PlaySta­tion 2, board games, com­puter games, and weird lit­tle games we invent to get folks excited at our library. Cur­rently we are get­ting senior cit­i­zens ready for a match against the teens with the Wii. We are also fig­ur­ing out if putting an old SNES in the teen area will lead to chaos or col­lec­tive fun. I would love infor­ma­tion from other folks that would help us estab­lish inter­gen­er­a­tional gam­ing. Stuff about lit­er­acy rates and games is always help­ful to use. Any­thing you want (stats, pro­files, humor­ous anti­dotes) from us for your project we will gladly pro­vide (cheesy folk song per­haps).
    Thanks Again -
    Karen Hixon
    John C. Fre­mont Library District

    Comment by Karen Hixon — November 30, 2007 @ 11:14 am

  12. For an arti­cle and pho­tos about our first Wii bowl­ing event with mem­bers (res­i­dents) from the Grand Island Vet­er­ans Home, and teens and staff from the Grand Island Pub­lic Library, go to this link: http://www.theindependent.com/stories/12022007/fea_wiibowl02.shtml It was a lit­tle dif­fi­cult, at first, to get our mem­bers to bowl, but after sev­eral expe­ri­enced suc­cess, includ­ing strikes on their first throw, they couldn’t wait to bowl. The kids and staff were so encour­ag­ing, too. The event met all of our goals of men­tal, phys­i­cal and social “exer­cise!” This time we did not really have teams or bowl com­plete games. We had two “teams” of teens & mem­bers who took turns bowl­ing, to com­plete one game, then the kids demon­strated Dance Dance Rev­o­lu­tion and Gui­tar Hero on PlaySta­tion 2.

    Comment by Janice Rihn — December 4, 2007 @ 9:31 am

  13. I’d like to see some focus on eval­u­a­tion of gam­ing. Fun­ders often want to see quan­ti­ta­tive results that library pro­gram­ming is being put to good use. What proven eval­u­a­tive method­olo­gies can be used to cap­ture some­thing as seem­ingly neb­u­lous as gam­ing in libraries?

    Comment by çadır — December 11, 2007 @ 3:33 am

  14. […] Gam­ing in Libraries LTR Update (The Shifted Librarian) […]

    Pingback by The OPLIN 4cast » Blog Archive » 4cast #81: Spectrum Auction, Kindle, Reading, Gaming — December 12, 2007 @ 10:16 am

  15. […] LTR update on gam­ing in libraries is just about done, and I’ve been read­ing some fas­ci­nat­ing arti­cles and books as background […]

    Pingback by The Shifted Librarian » Gaming and the Fall of Western Civilization — January 3, 2008 @ 6:56 am

  16. […] doing research for my LTR, I came across some sites for spe­cific gam­ing audi­ences, so I thought I’d share them here, […]

    Pingback by The Shifted Librarian » Specialized Gaming Sites — January 23, 2008 @ 7:03 am

  17. I like the idea of talk­ing about non-video games. If you are going to sup­port gam­ing — and as we know there are great rea­sons to do so — extend it to all ages, not just teens? And all types of games — I can see Flux or Apples To Apples as great games for a library setting!

    Comment by Kanal Temizleme Araçları — March 5, 2008 @ 8:09 am

  18. […] writ­ing a post about this entry http://theshiftedlibrarian.com/archives/2007/11/27/gaming-in-libraries-ltr-update.html Stay […]

    Pingback by http://theshiftedlibrarian.com/archives/2007/11/27/gaming-in-libraries-ltr-update.html — March 31, 2008 @ 5:24 am

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