Welcome to the 2017 MLA Annual Conference! This year’s theme is Radical Librarianship - the power of libraries to provide access to the truth, strengthen our community voices, create opportunity for exploration and innovation, and assist our patrons to build a better future. Libraries have always been radical, but what does Radical Librarianship mean for us today? Join us at the 2017 MLA Annual Conference to help shape that conversation!
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Friday, October 6 • 8:00am - 8:50am
Leave It to the Teens: Running a successful YA book group . . . by not running it

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Teens Know Best is a popular teen book group that is a collaborative program of Metropolitan State University and Saint Paul Public library. Each month between 25 and 35 teens laugh, eat pizza, and discuss books and topics both silly and serious: from zombie survival techniques to racial injustices in society. This group defies the conventional wisdom about book group participants: nearly half are boys and half are teens of color. Presenters will talk about how they engage in radical trust, handing much of the control over the group to the teens, themselves. Teens drive the discussions, author blog posts and reviews on Tumblr, and are involved in decisions about new directions the group may take. Session attendees will also hear from the teens by viewing short video interviews of Teens Know Best members, and will be encouraged to think of ways they can make their own programming more collaborative and participant-centered.


Jennifer DeJonghe

Reference and Instruction Librarian, Metropolitan State University
Jennifer DeJonghe is a Professor and a Reference and Instruction Librarian at Metropolitan State University. She teaches credit-bearing courses in the university's Information Studies program and helps coordinate the Library's web team, gaming group, and the Teens Know Best progr... Read More →

Emily Ganzel

Library Associate, Saint Paul Public Library
Emily Ganzel is a Library Associate at the Dayton's Bluff Branch of the Saint Paul Public Library. In addition to her work as a co-facilitator for Teens Know Best, she serves as the branch's volunteer liaison and supports the Dayton's Bluff Book Club.

Mallory Haskin

Social Media Advisor
Mallory Haskin is a graduate of the Master of Library and Information Science program at St. Catherine University and is an Associate Librarian at Hennepin County Library. She creates content and helps manage the Teens Know Best blog and social media accounts.

Colette Johnson

Library Associate, Saint Paul Public Library
Colette Johnson is a Library Associate at the Arlington Hills Branch of the St Paul Public Library. She is the coordinator for the Homework Center and Teens Know Best. Colette is a huge supporter of the tweens in her library, creating Tween Time, Makercamps and Art-lington to entertain... Read More →

Friday October 6, 2017 8:00am - 8:50am CDT
Meeting Room 111