Wednesday, November 11, 2009

What is a Tween??

A Tween and his dog :-)

Last month we celebrated Teen Read Week, and hopefully got lots of teens into our libraries!!

But what about Tweens?  I know, some of you might be thinking, what in the world is a tween?  Well, a tween is a individual who is no longer a child but not quite yet a teenager.  Usually, they are categorized in the 8-12 age range. Surprisingly, researchers have found that tweens actually have a great influence on many of the monetary decisions made by their parents and other adults in today's society.  Marketing for tweens is actually a huge sector of the advertising world, as can be seen in this article on CBS. USAToday also recently posted an article about the power of the tween marketing, focusing on the fact that two tweens now live in the White House (Malia and Sasha Obama).

If the marketing and consumer world has decided to focus on products and services for children, why should our libraries be any different? Our programming should not be only for the very young or the teens.  In order to fulfill our missions to encourage life-long learning in all individuals, we must plan programs, booklists, and events for the tween sector.  If we want to keep more kids coming into the library, we need to keep them interested in our services and ensure that they do not feel left for attending programs that are too young or too old for them.  Tweens need programs that are just right for them!
Some programming assistance to get you started: