Wednesday, April 16, 2008


The Shifted Librarian raises an interesting point in a recent post. Jenny cites sources that claim those who come to gaming events at the library also use the library in traditional ways more often. My first question is do we expect them to be using the library in traditional ways?
To me a traditional use of a public library entails checking out print resources. I rarely do that myself, so why should I expect gamers, who obviously are more digitally literate than I am, to do that very thing?
There are so many resources available online, and I do not mean Google, that traditional libraries are yesterday's news. I do think for primary school age learners that print resources remain best practices for learning reading literacies.
Middle-school gamers are often a different breed. At least at my school they are. One of my favorite 'durffisms' is that they are old enough to swim in the deep end now therefore they should use the deep web to gather information.
The surface web is Google, and it has a place and purpose in every research project. The deep web are databases which are often available through your public library or public school. I work in a private school with no money. We refer students to the public library which accesses a deep web resource. There are also free databases available.
To use deep web resources one never need set foot inside a library. Many gamers at my school inhale print books. An equal number don't touch them, but read - both wordcalling and comprehending - at least as well as the traditional readers.
Libraries serve both constituencies. As a librarian, I strive (and fail terribly) to provide sources/services for both types of learners. How are you doing in your library and/or classroom?
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