Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Quiet Kids

In my experience working with kids and teens, I've worked with plenty of kids who were shy, quiet and introverted (I even have a niece who is so painfully shy I can barely get a word out of her) and I'm not always quite sure about the best way to be with kids who aren't as talkative or gregarious as I am.  Helping a shy or introverted child enjoy a program at the library is sometimes tricky too.  An article I read a few weeks ago speaks to the potential power social media has in an introverted child's life.  Yes, another reason to start creating opportunities for kids to participate in library services online through sites like Facebook, Twitter, blogs and GoodReads!  Especially when it comes to book clubs, I know it's not easy getting kids to speak openly and honestly about the books they're reading, but sites like GoodReads and Shelfari allow a safe space for kids to share their impressions, thoughts and reactions to books while not feeling the pressure of being on the spot.  You can use these sites as either a stand-alone space for kids to share book reviews, or as an expansion to a program you already offer.  It might be the very thing that eases a child out of his/her shyness!


Anonymous said...

I am wondering about whether goodreads is an appropriate website for my 9 year old. I'm pretty protective, but when you hear some of the cyberbullying stories, I feel I must be cautious. Do you (or readers of this site) know if any kids have had negative experiences with this website? I'm guessing it's pretty safe.

Kelley B said...

I've been on GoodReads myself for about 4 years and have never seen any type of inappropriate behavior. I think because it's a 'book site' vs. a strickly social media site (like MySpace and Facebook) the children and adults participating in the site are really there with a purpose. One of our children's librarians' sons is there and I believe he's 11. He's had a great experience connecting with other kids and even with other adults who love reading kids books. It's important, of course, on any website, for parents to participate with their children and monitor use. Thanks for your comment!

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