Reach your teen audience with creative ways that promote reading and Young Adult literature using free or open-source technology tools.
1. READ Posters: Following the format of READ posters create by the American Library Association, take photos of staff members and students dressed in costumes holding a companion book. Add the words READ and a quote. Use free editing software (GIMP, Open office, Picasa, Big Huge Labs, Aviary) to make the posters. You can also use ALA’s READ generator: http://www.ala.org/ala/aboutala/offices/publishing/graphics/READ_Mini_Posters.cfm
2. Book Trailers: Create short book trailers using free video editing software (iMovie, MovieMaker, Photostory) to promote new books that are being released. Include images, titles, narration and audio music. Embed the movies on your library home page.
3. Wall Wisher for Read Alikes! Set up a wallwisher page (www.wallwisher.com) to have students suggest books for read alikes. For example: If you liked “The Hunger Games” then read … Students can add their own suggestions and images of book cover to the wall.
4. Bathroom Graffiti with QR codes: Entice students to learn about new books in the Library using QR codes. Create fun posters and place them in the bathroom stalls. Include a QR code on the poster. When the student scans the QR code with their mobile device, the code reveals information about the new book. Great for scavenger hunts too!
5. Teen Book Video Awards: Have students nominate their favorite novels all year long. Get your book club to be the “Academy” and narrow down the nominations to 3 in different genres. Create a short videos or large posters for each genre and have students vote on their favorite. Hold your own Teen Book Award ceremony in the Library (include a red carpet and paparazzi!)
6. Digital frames for book promotions: Using free photo editing software (or even PowerPoint) make 5×7 photos of book covers and titles that say “recommended by …”. Select books with a theme (author studies, Graphic Novels, Banned Books, a specific genre) and display the photos of those books in a digital picture frame. Place on circulation desk for students to watch during check-out.
7. Genre PSA: Have students create short 15/30 second audio Public Service Announcements (using Audacity, Garageband, etc) to be played over the school PA system during announcements. Great for Teen Read or Banned Books Week.
8. Blogging with Book Buddies: Set up a blog with another book club to discuss the novels they are reading or recommend new titles. Use free blog software like Blogger, EduBlogs, or Class Blogmeister.
9. Guess the book: Display a colorful Wordle that includes words like: character names, locations, words that describe events or characters of a book along with a title “Guess the Book”. Another idea is to make a Wordle Advertisement for a book.
10. Author Labels: Use online forums like MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, author blogs, and online book groups to help get your students excited about reading. Compile a brief list of links with additional info about an author or topic and print them on an address label. Stick the label in the books in a highly visible place–on the last page, or opposite the first page. Encourage your students to explore reading in their own territory (Thanks to Reading 2.o).
11. Poetry break: Have students record themselves reading their own poetry or a published poem and save it onto a Mp3 player. Create listening station with headphones in your Library for students to sit and listen.
Other great technology tools you can use: VoiceTread, Animoto, Toon Doo, Google Presentations, Blabberize, Google Maps and more!