Superpower Girls

Superpower Girls: Female Representation in the Sci-fi/Superhero Genre

A study by Women’s Media Center and BBC, October 2018

SuperheroStudy

Key take-aways:

  • “Every demographic group we spoke to expressed a strong desire for more female superheroes…”
  • “Female sci-fi/superheroes are more impactful sources of inspiration for girls than male heroes are for boys, empowering girls—and especially girls of color—to believe they can achieve anything they put their mind to.”
  • “Teen girls are significantly less likely than teen boys to describe themselves as confident, brave, and heard. And these challenges are even more pronounced for girls of color.”
  • “Despite notable campaigns to boost women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), we still see a 23-point gender gap between teen boys and girls with regards to interest in STEM careers.”
  • “1 in 3 teens [including boys] agree that girls have fewer opportunities than boys to be leaders.”
  • “If you can’t see her, you can’t be her,” BBC America President Sarah Barnett

Library considerations:

  • How many sci-fi/superhero movies for teens does my library show featuring strong female leads?
  • How many strong female leads does my library emphasize when we have sci-fi/superhero fandom events?
  • Looking at displays of TV and movies for teens in my library and at my library’s online presence, how many items feature a strong female lead?
  • What percentage of my library’s teen advisory council (or similar) are girls? Is this representative of the percentage of regulars who are teen girls?
  • Looking at the leadership opportunities my library offers teens, what percentage are offered to teen girls? Is this representative of the percentage of regulars who are teen girls?

What is Newport Public Library doing for teens? By Stacy Johns

NewportPublicLibraryTeenRoom1

Newport Public Library created a new Teen Room in 2016 when our director and supervisor kindly surrendered their office space. It compressed the staff, but made a huge improvement for teens, who had previously had only a corner of the main fiction area with limited shelving and no “hang out” area. The Teen Room is relatively small, probably 30′ X 15′, but it has a door that closes, a Playstation, a whiteboard, a Teen Art Display, and a genrified collection with a large area for graphics.

We went from  having no regulars, to having a dozen to sixteen or so kids, probably 75% boys, coming to hang out after school each day, with new kids popping in regularly as well. Our circulation numbers jumped at first, but have leveled out. It’s a safe and parent-friendly place for kids to plan to go meet their friends after school, and it’s popularity highlights that there’s more of a need for this in our community than we can provide for! The kids are required to interact with library staff and security guards, and some of our long-timers have definitely showed improvement over time in understanding how to share a public space and how to communicate with adults.

NewportPublicLibraryTeenRoom2

We’re learned a lot from our experience, and consider it a success, but noise and rambunctiousness have been an issue with the staff overall, as the room is poorly insulated and right next to the staff work area. We tried to find attractive, teen friendly furniture, but have found that kids are rougher on it than we expected–they want to sit on the edges of tables, and move the cafe stools up and down so that the metal supports bend and fiberglass pieces snap. We’re starting to consider switching to indestructible vinyl couches and a low, solid coffee table. The paw and hand chairs and the vinyl hassock pieces have help well, though. The cameras are indispensable–sadly, we’ve had a couple serious behavioral issues where reconstruction of events was key.

Written by Stacy Johns

 

Newport Public Library’s 2016-2017 statistics from the State Library of Oregon:

  • County: Lincoln
  • Population: 17,254
  • Registered borrowers: 12,173
  • Total library visits: 160,390
  • Total library hours in a typical week: 62
  • Total paid staff: 11.9

Learn more about Newport Public Library via their website and facebook page.

Want to share what your library is doing for teens? Contact Katie Anderson.

 

Nominate Books for the 2019 Book Raves

Nominate Books

Book Rave is an annual list produced by the members of the Oregon Young Adult Network and announced at the Oregon Library Association’s annual conference in April. Books nominated should be written and marketed for readers of middle and high school age (generally 6th-12th grade) and be published between November 1, 2017 and October 31, 2018.

Nominations will be collected until early December 2018. Members will then be invited to vote on the nominated books through mid-January 2019, narrowing the list to approximately 20 OYAN Book Rave selections. The list is further discussed at the winter meeting of the Oregon Young Adult Network.

Please nominate early and often!

Access past Book Raves on the OYAN website.

Book Raves Project Lead, Sonja Somerville

What is Milton-Freewater Public Library doing for teens? By Rhina Barahona

Milton-FreewaterLibrary

Milton-Freewater Public Library has just started a new monthly teen craft night. The craft night consists of doing activities such as painting, jewelry making and many other fun projects. The teens are able to let loose and use their creativity to make something of their own while having a good time with other teens and making new friends.

The teens responded very positively. They were excited that finally there was something for teens to do and they really liked the projects that I had suggested. The parents were very excited as well to see their teens wanting to come to the library for this event.

Before starting a teen program you should:

  • Build relationships with the older kids that come to the library.
  • As for their opinions about what they would like to see done.
  • Ask them questions to make them feel like they are contributing to the program.
  • When you start the program advertise it throughout the library and online. Remind older kids that are checking out books about the new program and let them know what it’s about.

Written by Rhina Barahona

 

Milton-Freewater Public Library’s 2016-2017 statistics from the State Library of Oregon:

  • County: Umatilla
  • Population: 9,872
  • Registered borrowers: 4,033
  • Total library visits: 30,000
  • Total library hours in a typical week: 48
  • Total paid staff: 3.96

Learn more about Milton-Freewater Public Library via their website and facebook page.

Want to share what your library is doing for teens? Contact Katie Anderson.

2018 Graphic Rave Now Available

Graphic_Rave_2018

The graphic novels on this list were published between May 1, 2017, and April 30, 2018. Titles were nominated by teens and library staff in Oregon. OYAN members voted to select the 20 titles on the list and worked to create a balanced list that includes a variety of genres and diverse titles. Learn more about the annual Graphic Rave and access past lists on the OYAN website.

YALSA opportunities: Summer Funding, Selected Booklists

The logo of YALSA, the Young Adult Library Services AssociationApply Now for the 2019 Summer Learning Grants!
Eligible YALSA members can now apply for the Summer Learning Resources Grant and the Teen Summer Intern Program Grant. Both grants are worth $1,000 each and are generously funded by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. Twenty-five recipients will be selected for each grant. Apply by January 1, 2019.

Be on a Selected Booklist Blogging Team!
Are you interested in serving on a selected list blogging team in 2019? If so, please fill out this form by September 30, and indicate if you are interested in Quick Picks, Great Graphic Novels, Amazing Audiobooks, and/or Best Fiction for Young Adults. If you have questions, please contact Stephen Ashley, Hub Member Manager.

Call for fall newsletter articles

Do you work with teens or have an interest in teen services in Oregon libraries? Please consider writing an article for the fall newsletter. There are so many options that I know you have something to share with your colleagues around the state. Have you gone to an interesting training or webinar? Did you have a really innovate program that was a huge success? Did you try something new that was a huge failure? Do you have any thoughts or opinions on issues being discussed in the library world? Have you learned any new lessons in the course of your work? Do you have a book review or book talk to share with your colleagues? Write a short article about it so that we can learn from each other.

Submissions should be 1/2 – 1 page long. Pictures with captions are nice, but not required.

Send your submissions to OYAN Publications.