Thursday, June 25, 2009

Lexi the Intern and the Case of the Missing Mentor

Ok, well, to be fair, my mentor was not missing, (she was merely hiding in an obscure back room in the building), but I have been thinking about that title for a few weeks and it seemed a good opportunity to use it. So now today is officially awesome!

Events that made today awesome:
  • Got to use cool title!
  • Over three hundred people attended our summer reading kick off event yesterday evening. Great turn-out people!
  • Made a new poster requesting people to turn off their cell phones in the library. My mentor loved it and now it is almost wall papering the main floor. (Only a slight exaggeration, but hey!, I finished a project!!)
  • Finished revising a brochure about our online database collection and my mentor thinks it is ready to go to print! (We are waiting for another mentor to give the final go-ahead.)
  • Made over three hundred tickets for our Wild About Wednesday programs that actually contain relevant information.
  • Sent out information about Tie-Dye Tuesday! for our monthly newsletter! (The info will hopefully appear in our July newsletter because the event will be taking place so very early in August [AUGUST 4TH, 1:30pm, HINT HINT heeheehee])
And to make matters even better, I found some equipment for my graduation present at a good price. How cool is that?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Picking the Picture Perfect Poster

Today was poster day in the Youth Services. With the Harry Potter Party rapidly approaching, our desks were a blur of banners, bottle labels and blown up images of the House Crests! Unfortunately, as is oft the case when adjusting digital images, the final larger versions of the crests came out a tad too pixalated. Let's just say, we couldn't tell if it was the Hufflepuff badger or raccoon. These are the times when you look back fondly on grade school and think: "Gee, I probably should have paid more attention in art class." Time to break out the pencils, pens, and hope for a stroke of artistic brilliance!

(For some reason, I think the sorting hat may be laughing at me....)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Papers Everywhere!!

So the gap in posting occurred largely due to the vast amount of paperwork necessary for both the summer reading program and the academic portion of my internship.

The summer reading program this year for the children's room is Read to Feed!, with the kids reading to earn money that will be donated to the local food pantry SHARE. My role in this was to assemble the summer reading packets that will go home with each student on the last day of class. I assembled, with the diligent aid of my mentors of course, enough packets for each student in Milford in Readiness through Fifth Grade. I think the average number of students per grade was around two hundred, but we kind of stopped counting after a while. heehee!

The packets contain the summer reading logs, along with lists of events that the library will be presenting this summer (including my Tie-Dye Tuesday!! on August 4th at 1:30pm!!) and bookmarks and pencils for the youngest grades.

Unfortunately, the other paper work does not seem to be nearly as exciting as stuffing brightly colored sheets into bags for future summer program participants. No, the academic paperwork is something I fear above all else: reflective and research papers. I will have to compose three short papers relating my experience at the library to set prompts that my school has issued. The unfortunate part lies in the subject of these prompts. My college seems to have decided that all interns are taking business or political internships, and the prompts reflect that. So the question remains, what does a library intern have in common with someone who wants to be a future CEO or US senator? Let's find out!!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The List of Knowledge, The Ultimate Sorting Machine, and the Intern

So these past few weeks, I've been rather remiss in my mentioning of my time in the Technical Services Department. I find this rather strange as this is the area of a library I hope to one day find myself working in full time. You see, this is where the magic happens. This is where all the new books come in, their records are created, and they are labeled, covered and stamped before heading out to the public. This is what that blasted "In Processing" status means when you're waiting for that new book.

Anyway, over the past couple weeks, under the tutelage of mentors, of course, I began the process of taking a stack of recently purchased books, referred to as "New Acquisitions" and have started moving them through the cataloging process. Their first stop was checking the contents of these boxes against receipts, and then creating purchase records. Next up: creating call numbers!! At least, I think that's the next step. I mean, it does make sense right?

The rest of my time today was spent again in the Reference Department where I carefully began constructing my first draft of my very first library brochure based on that massive list of online databases I compiled last week. I found this process (and the use of Microsoft Publisher) to be significantly simpler than the construction of the companion website (using Dreamweaver) but I remain hopeful that the ease of both will level out with practice. I am wondering if I will ever look at a website or brochure the same way again once this summer is over! heehee!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A Web of Text, Links, and Graphics: A Foray Into the World of Website Design

Remember when I said the website design program Dreamweaver might take some more getting used to? Yeah, about that...hahaha. Today I embarked on the first stages of entering the revised list of online databases into a new web page. And formatting images, and links (which go to other web pages), and jump links (which go to a different spot on that same page). It seems to me the most important thing to remember about constructing a web page is to not click and drag because it will wreak havoc with the layout and also to never accidentally hit the "enter" key. However things all seem to be coming together nicely, and hopefully by the time I have finished compiling that list of databases, I will have acquired enough of a basic knowledge of HTML computer code that my web page will blend smoothly with the rest of the Library's online setup.

On a side note, but still on the same topic, I learned how to enter links into blogs. If you click on the Harry Potter Party in the previous post, it should now take you to the description of the party! Hope to see you all there!!

Something Wizardy This Way Comes

Another day, another new introduction to another department in the library! Yesterday marked the start of preparing materials for a Teen/Young Adult program called Harry Potter Party revolving around Harry Potter and the upcoming movie release: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. It was explained to me how different ages have different ability levels and thus crafts for programs must be carefully prepared so that no age is overwhelmed or completely bored.

In this program, for example, teens will have the opportunity to make their very own wizarding wands. Yet if every teen had to go through the process of rolling the paper so it formed a thin enough tube, pouring hot glue down the tube so that it filled, and waiting for that glue to dry for an hour or so to form a hard wand, that would probably not be so much fun for the teens. So instead, my mentor and I sat down and rolled out thirty paper tubes, made a hilarious mess with the hot glue trying to fill them (don't worry, we filled all the tubes and cleaned up!), and had the tubes set and dry.

Now, when the day of the program comes (on Tuesday, July 7th from 2-4pm), everyone can focus on painting, modifying, and otherwise perfecting their wand instead of watching glue dry.

(My mentor made the finished wand shown above as an example)

Now onto potions class and those pesky O.W.L.S. exams! (I know, just when you thought finals were over, too. Heehee!)

Monday, June 1, 2009

One of my Favorite Things

Today was quite an adventure. This morning kicked off with how to remove the leftover tax forms and begun the process of another major project: compiling and annotating the list of Wadleigh's online databases. Eventually, I, with my mentors, may be redoing that section of our website to make it more accessible and user friendly. However, as a result of this, I feel slightly like I'm under a technical-computer overload with the rapid addition of two new programs to my repertoire: Dreamweaver and Microsoft Publisher. Publisher seems to be an endlessly useful program with its roots in templates for posters, brochures, and other small print publications. I'm looking forward to using it for promoting a Career and Employment display, as well as organizing that list of the online databases into some sort of pamphlet. Dreamweaver might take some more getting used to!

But anyway, this afternoon I got to perform one of my favorite tasks at the library: calling people when the books they have requested have come in. Talk about an easy way to make someone smile! "Hi! That book you've been waiting for forever is here! Yes, you can check it out now! No, you don't owe any fines! Sure, come on in!" You can just hear the smile get bigger over the phone. Definitely one of the best parts of working in a library.