Teen Guide to Pregnancy, Drugs, and Smoking
My inner snotty self wants to joke that you should save the drugs and smoking until after the kids are born, since that’s when you will really need it, especially during the teen years.
I know back in the day most kids from junior high school onward had to do one of those papers about an “issue.” I actually haven’t had anyone ask me to get a book on this in quite a while. If they are doing this kind of project, they much prefer something like an article or two. Given this lovely cover, I can understand why. I do remember one young teen saying she wanted to do a paper on “the pros and cons of child abuse.” (I really want teachers to phrase this differently! And can we please do something about the pro child abuse crowd?)
I actually like this kind of question. Part of me wants to use this as an opportunity to talk to kids about library help in the future. Take the example above. I asked the teen to pretend there is no paper or pros and cons. I then asked why they thought this was something we should talk or write about. We are just talking and not trying to write a paper or talk about how many words or sources to use. Why is the topic important? What do we need to do? Then I broke out the Holly phrase that is used when she is the supervisor or my editor: why should I care? This is usually her shorthand way of saying why should we spend time and money on something? Is it worth it? How easy is it to implement? What resources are needed? Who benefits if we do this?
When librarians add this to the reference interview, most teens will relax and talk. More often than not, they will have a couple of solid ideas or a thesis statement in less than 5 minutes. I also share that one of my regrets when I was in college is that I did NOT take advantage of the range of library services and help. I would have been such a better undergrad student.
This is a weeder. Time to upgrade.