July 10, 2014
July’s Library Life is now online. Do have a read, it is full of interesting stuff including makerspaces, modern learning environment. I’ve written a piece in it about social media at Christchurch City Libraries.
Some of you may recognise that covergirl’s smock. is a 1970 image from our own library:
A cold wintry morning during the holidays in the cosy Canterbury Children’s Library where Story-telling sessions were well attended each day. Many of the childfen combined the story-session with choosing their holiday reading, and others made the trip an opportunity to examine the working meccano models and electric trains. From left: Mari-Ann Fairbairn (aged 9), Thea Clemence (aged 8) and Geoffrey Baker (aged 8) with Miss Shirley Lindsay Reading of the library staff who is just choosing a story.
Appeared in the Christchurch Star 29 May 1970 Flickr: CCL-Star-522, from the collection of the Christchurch Star.
Check out more fab series of photos of librarians at work from the Christchurch Star.
Brian Gilberthorpe – Inundated by cataloguing to be done April 1975 Flickr: CCL-star-471 From the collection of the Christchurch Star
May 16, 2014
This past week has seen me undertake my own ‘intrepid journey’ traveling through a week positively crammed with new experiences. The sheer joy of visiting beautiful spaces, amazing food, forging some wonderful and hopefully long term relationships with colleagues from around the world, – and did I mention lots and lots of good food? There was also the chance to listen to some truly inspiring speakers among them our very own Sam Johnson from the SVA with his mantra of dream it, plan it, do it.
There was thinking around change and the amazing things libraries are doing to remain relevant in the 21st century; and how we are serving diverse and often challenged communities. Libraries help facilitate the creation of content instead of just curating it. Gold Coast City is doing some interesting things in one of their new libraries around connecting with teens – ‘Loud in the Library” and Teen Tech Week connect young people with technology. They also have a Media Lab – a creative design hub which is not only bookable but free and the list goes on…. and on. Truly some great things happening on the Gold Coast.
The chance to be immersed in the MetLib culture for an entire week has been an amazing experience and one which has provided professional development beyond measure. The small cohort, the humour, the willingness to share ideas and the realization that we in New Zealand and especially at Christchurch City Libraries can hold our heads up in the sure and certain knowledge that we are up there with the best of them.
There is so much more I could share, more than there is space for in this forum – if you would like to know more about MetLib 2014 please do get in touch.
One final snippet I must share and one which is testament to our hosts and the loveliness of our country – yesterday while enjoying the views from a cafe on Waiheke an Australian colleague was heard to comment “You know, I could live here.” The ultimate accolade indeed!
May 16, 2014
What do librarians enjoy doing at conferences even more than networking with other librarians? Visiting libraries of course and Metlib has given ample opportunities for that. I could hardly contain myself as, reminiscent of a school trip, with much excited chattering and a sense of anticipation of what was to come we clambered aboard our bus on a glorious Auckland day, We set off on a trip that would see us visit libraries at Botany and Mt Roskill, Tupu – Auckland’s dedicated youth library – as well as the Marae at Unitec.
Highlights for this self confessed architecture junkie had to be the Botany Library with its elements of industrial chic. It is a space that delivers on so many levels and a forerunner in its day of RFID and incorporating a retail model in a mall setting. It features some stunning design elements such as the amazingly lit seating in the YA area.
As if this wasn’t feast enough for the senses, Thursday afternoon saw us on the ferry bound for Waiheke to visit the new library there. Unfortunately due to construction difficulties the building is somewhat behind schedule and is not yet complete. However we were allowed to wander through and it promises to be another stunning building in Auckland City Libraries retinue.
The architect explained that the premise of the building is that the library is gathered under a sheltering canopy of trees. Light wells in the space are filtered through a patterned layer to mimic the lighting of an exterior grove of pohutakawa. A beautiful exterior amphitheatre lies north – accessible through almost an entire wall of glass doors and the library itself is accessed through a courtyard shared with additional spaces including a small gallery and a piano museum.
New Zealand really does do great libraries.