Programming robots with kids, library programs for babies and their parents and the worlds largest library for international children’s and youth literature

Sarah Eagan visted Libraries in Berlin and Munich in the beginning of 2023. For us she recounts her experiences at the Zentral- und Landesbibliothek Berlin and Stadtbibliothek München, as well as the Internationale Jugendbibliothek

My journey started at the ZLB (Zentral und Landesbibliothek Berlin) where I had the opportunity in my short stay there to speak with many staff who worked in Children’s and Youth program planning and collection development. I was impressed with the number of children’s and young adult specialists that they had on their team and it led to a wide variety of quality programming being offered at the library. For the youngest library patrons there was Bücher Babies, a four-week program with parents and their babies, where each week had a new theme.
They have a selection of offerings for school age children, and schools in the area can sign up to bring their class to these. These offerings include doing an age appropriate craft, storytelling and coding with Bee-Bots (an element I will touch on later), and for the older ages there are research workshops all about learning how to find resources and identify fake news. I found this system—with teachers having the option to sign up for these programs 1x/month— to be well organized and efficient.
They have worked with pedagogy firms to make
these programs interesting and developmentally appropriate for kids and I am inspired to add this energy to my work at the library.
hough not part of the Munich City Library system, I also had the opportunity to visit the Internationale Jugendbibliothek with Dr. Leila (Roya) Maktabi Fard, a librarian at the Munich City Library and also a freelancer in the Persian Language section at the Internationale Jugendbibliothek. The Internationale Jugendbibliothek is the world’s largest library for international children’s and youth literature.
It was truly an inspiriting space that focuses on the importance of children’s and young adult literature and celebrates the authors and illustrators that have made an impact on children’s literature around the world.

The whole report is available to be read in its entirety here.

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