2002 Teen Read Week celebrates the fun of reading

Contact: Nichole Gilbert


For Immediate Release

December 19, 2002

2002 Teen Read Week celebrates the fun of reading

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), has successfully completed the fifth annual Teen Read Week. Many school and public libraries, bookstores and comic shops celebrated the event October 13-19, and more than 6,000 teens completed the teen reading survey jointly sponsored by YALSA and SmartGirl.org. Survey results will be available later this year. Many Teen Read Week activities used this year's theme, Get Graphic @ your library™ as well as the general theme, Read for the Fun of It.

Some of the libraries participating in Teen Read Week were:

  • St. Edmund Prep High School, Brooklyn, N.Y., participated by holding a 'Can You Guess the Teacher's Favorite Book' contest where students had to match the book to the teacher. Librarians also 'carded' all freshmen to see if they had a public library card. If a student had one, their name was entered into a drawing for a prize. The school also used Teen Read Week to kick off a book donation for the Reach Out and Read program that will last throughout the year.
  • Librarians at Cuyahoga County Public Library, Maple Heights, Ohio, made several items in the library's Teen Collection "Instant Winners." When teens checked out an Instant Winner, the circulation staff activated the revolving blue light and announced the Teen Read Week winner. Also, the Teen Advisory Group sponsored an anime festival on Saturday afternoon and ran an identity contest using the ALA superheroes poster. "Teens and staff enjoyed rewarding the instant winners," commented Mary Arnold, regional teen services manager, "and teens were encouraged to read for fun and prizes."
  • Evansville (Ind.) Vanderburgh Public Library, dedicated the entire week to the theme for Teen Read Week, Get Graphic @ your library™. Anime films were shown; a teacher who taught in Japan for a year taught phrases, manners and customs of the culture; a local Japanese restaurant prepared sushi; and a teacher who grew up in Japan spoke to teens about the cultural differences between the United States and Japan. "It was exciting seeing teens who may never get outside of Vanderburgh County eating sushi and hearing the speakers talk about growing up in Japan!" remarked Lola Teubert, young adult/literacy services librarian.
  • The Ocean City (N.J.) Intermediate School eighth grade language arts teachers and Jennifer Boyce, the school's media specialist organized a trip to the Ocean City Public Library where they met Young Adult writer Carol Plum-Ucci. The students listened to the author explain what inspired her and how she worked with writer's block. She explained her writing process, answered questions and gave advice on their interests. Plum-Ucci also stayed and signed copies of her books for the students. "We had a great time and the students were completely engaged!" Boyce said.

Teen Read Week corporate sponsors include Barnes & Noble, Inc., New Line Cinema, Random House, and Harcourt. Friends include CrossGen Comics, Scholastic, Dark Horse Comics and Pamela Spencer Holley. Nonprofit partners include: American Association of School Administrators, American Booksellers Association, Kidsnet, National Association of Secondary School Principals, National Council of Teachers of English, SmartGirl.org, National Education Association, National School Boards Association, OUCH! Comics/The N, Speak Up Press, International Reading Association and

Teen Read Week is a national literacy initiative aimed at teens, their parents, librarians, educators, booksellers and other concerned adults. It began in 1998 and is celebrated the third week in October.

For more information on Teen Read Week, please visit the Teen Read Week web site at
www.ala.org/teenread and be sure to check back throughout the year for valuable information on Teen Literacy. Contact the YALSA office by e mail:
yalsa@ala.org, or by phone: 800-545-2433 ext. 4391.