Thursday, March 27, 2008

Web based storytimes

Hi Everyone,

This is Erin from A.C. Free and I just wanted to share a great idea we are using here at our library thanks to this blog.

A few months ago Kelley and her intern Kelly posted video book reviews on the blog. Since then a couple of guest video bloggers have been updating us on their favorite books. I watched the videos and I showed them to our staff. We all loved them. Diane, the director here, encouraged me to find out how Kelley did this and how we could use this technology in our library.

Thanks to Kelley I discovered the Flip Camera. After a little research, it seemed like this ingenious little camera would be a fun addition to our library. This camera can store up to 60 minutes of video and loading that video onto your computer is so simple. You just have to flip out the little usb drive and use the software provided by the camera. The provided software helps you get the video on Youtube or formatted for emailing. Of course this all has to be a non-EInetwork computer.

Since purchasing this camera we have filmed a story time by a local author. She, the kids, and the parents all get kick out of seeing themselves on You Tube. I have also used the camera to allow some young teen volunteers to make their own puppet shows. They are thrilled by the fact that they are on You Tube. Their parents don't mind the fact that they are on You Tube because it is through the library.

Webcast storytimes are nothing new. This is definitely program jacking, but I can't believe how many patrons and volunteers are in love with the idea of being on the internet. This summer we have a small group of middle school and high school students interested in putting on puppet shows for the younger kids. The draw is that they get to be on You Tube. We thinking of making how to craft videos also. Now that we have a You Tube account (ACFLibrary for anyone who wants to see the videos) everyone in the library is looking for a way to reach through the internet and catch new patrons.

What would you film at your library if anyone in the world could be your patron?