Friday, May 28, 2010

Steampunk and Teens

Steampunk certainly does seem to be growing. But does it have the strong appeal with teens that has been forecast?

Here is a panel from BEA with Scott Westerfeld, Cherie Priest and Cory Doctorow that explores "Steampunkery: Why are today's teens embracing 19th-century technologies?"

Steampunk Panel - SLJ Day of Dialog, BEA 2010 from School Library Journal on Vimeo.

What do you think? Are your teens into it?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Adorable Teen Clique: Texas Werewolves

Ok, this isn't groundbreaking news. Teens want a group they can feel is their own. This clip from a local San Antonio news show captures this perfectly.

I'm amused that they claim they are not trying to get attention.

Any interesting groups evolving in your communities?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Second Guessing Social Networking

At last week's Teen Project seminar, David M. mentioned this article from the New York Times:

Antisocial Networking?
How Does Technology Affect Kids' Friendships?
Published: April 30, 2010

One of the concerns is that, unlike their parents — many of whom recall having intense childhood relationships with a bosom buddy with whom they would spend all their time and tell all their secrets — today’s youths may be missing out on experiences that help them develop empathy, understand emotional nuances and read social cues like facial expressions and body language. With children’s technical obsessions starting at ever-younger ages — even kindergartners will play side by side on laptops during play dates — their brains may eventually be rewired and those skills will fade further, some researchers believe.

What do you think? Should people be more concerned? Can libraries provide essential face time?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Video games score one for literacy

For every time we cringe at the movie tie-in cover:

"I was at the library Reference Desk ready to answer questions and help people find stuff when a teenage boy came up to me looking for Catcher in the Rye. I checked the catalog for Salinger and didn’t see any hard cover copies available so I walked the kid over to the uncataloged Classic Paperbacks. His mom followed behind us and while I was browsing the S’s I overheard this incredible bit of dialog.

‘Hey, Mom! See this book?’ He grabbed a copy of Inferno, the first book in Dante Alighieri’s trilogy The Divine Comedy. ‘Remember that game you bought me? This is the book it was based on, but this book is even sicker the game! It was awesome!’"

via Game Couch.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Teens Prefer Texting

Kathleen forwarded this interesting article to me this week:

American Teens Say Texting is Favorite Way to Communicate

In the past week, using its SMS text-messaging service, ChaCha asked nearly 1500 teen and young adult users: "What's your favorite way to communicate?" Their answers:

Mobile Text 67.53%
Mobile Call/Voice 9.22%
Facebook 8.84%
Instant Message 2.88%
Email 0.29%
*Other 11.24%

I find this pretty fascinating. I've heard for a while that teens found email "old fashion" (which pains me). I like email and still prefer it myself...though I do enjoy texting. Maybe we do need to reconsider how we communicate with teens. Though perhaps this is just preferred with peers? I'd be curious to see statistics on that.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Choose Privacy Week

We are in the middle of Choose Privacy Week!

Choose Privacy Week Video from 20K Films on Vimeo.

So much interesting stuff to think about here. What are your concerns?

Saturday, May 1, 2010

How Fast Are Teens Growing Up?

There is an interesting article this week in the New York Times reflecting on a new study by the MacArthur Research Network on Transitions to Adulthood called “What’s Going on With Young People Today? The Long and Twisting Path to Adulthood”.

The Slow, Winding Path to Adulthood

Many a parent believes that their children are growing up too fast. Eight is the new 12, and 12 is the new 18. Today’s middle schoolers dress like adults, know how to swear like adults and are exposed to drugs. They also know about sex, talk back and reach puberty earlier than we ever did.

But then, they stop. And reverse. A study by researchers at Oregon State University, which appears this week in the journal Transition to Adulthood finds that “despite living in an age of iPads and hybrid cars, young Americans are more like the young adults of the early 1900s than the baby-boom generation: They are living at home longer, are financially insecure and are making lower wages.”

The gist of the article seems to be that there is no set or normal age for maturation within our culture or species, but it seems to have a lot to do with financial ability as much as anything.

How do you see this manifesting with teens in your life?