WTBBL’s teen patrons to benefit from grant

WTBBL’s teen patrons to benefit from grant

WTBBL's Marian Mays

WTBBL youth services librarian Marian Mays outside the library. (Photo courtesy WTBBL)

Marian Mays, the new youth services librarian at the Washington Talking Book & Braille Library in Seattle, soon will have some serious coin on hand to help her and WTBBL serve its teen patrons even better.

Mays is one of 20 recipients selected from a pool of more than 50 applicants to receive a 2016 Teen Tech Week Grant. The grants come from Best Buy and the Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of the American Library Services Association.

Each recipient receives a $1,000 grant to support Teen Tech Week digital literacy programming that targets underserved or marginalized teens. Teen Tech Week takes place March 6-12, with the theme of “Create it at your library.”

Mays says she plans to use the grant money to create an assisted gaming lab for teens ages 13-18 on Saturday, March 12, from 2 to 5 p.m. at WTBBL. Pizza will be provided. Interested students should RSVP Mays by March 11 at [email protected] or (206) 615-1253.

“I am honored WTBBL was selected to receive the Teen Tech Week Grant,” Mays said. “The funds will be used to create an assisted gaming lab for teens with visual and physical impairments. Gaming is extremely important since play fosters crucial social, emotional and cognitive skills in individuals of all ages. It is also an essential part of the adolescent experience. My goal is for teens and educators around the state to use this gaming lab for education, fun and to make new relationships with their peers.”

Mays said the gaming lab will include braille board games, braille card games, tactile games like giant jenga, Legos and audio games such as Blindscape and Blindfold Horserace. She added she hopes to take the lab outside of WTBBL.

“I’m interested in taking the lab on the road to schools for fun or education, so teachers can reach out to me if they are interested in having the lab come to their school.”

WTBBL is a service of the Washington State Library and the Office of Secretary of State.

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