The goal of the Young Adult Services department, housed in TeenSpace, is to meet the educational, informational, and recreational library needs of Port Washington’s teenage population (grades 7-12). Just as adolescence is a transitional period in a young person’s life, the Young Adult department attempts to bridge the gap between the Children’s library and the adult collections by means of the special services, materials and programs provided for teens.

Adolescence is a time for teens to move from the library microcosm in the Children’s Room into the rest of the library. The Young Adult department helps to ease this transition and insures that teens are not left at sea during a turbulent period of their lives. Indeed, the teen years are marked by myriad physical and emotional changes, as well as added pressures at school, home, and from peers. In view of this, the Young Adult department aims to create a welcoming atmosphere that encourages adolescents to use the library and read for pleasure throughout their teen years, thereby insuring that recreational reading and library use will remain lifelong habits.

Services: The Library’s TeenSpace room provides a place for teens to study, read, socialize, or simply relax. Librarians who specialize in services for this age group are on hand for consultations regarding selection of materials. To this end, the YA staff prepares and distributes lists of recommended materials for teens. While TeenSpace does not house all the materials students are likely to need for their school work, it is a good first stop in the research process, as the staff can offer tips on how to approach the assignment. Teens are also encouraged to make use of the Library’s Reference Room, Adult collections, Computer Center and Media collections.

We are happy to arrange class visits and library tours for school groups. However, in order to arrange for adequate staffing to insure the most productive experience for students, teachers must submit their requests at least two week in advance of the intended visit. Teachers are also encouraged to alert the YA staff of upcoming assignments a few days prior to the date students receive them. When necessary, YA librarians can assemble temporary reserve collections to allow for equitable access to limited resources.

A priority of all YA staff members is to act as youth advocates, upholding the rights of young people within the Library and throughout the community.

Materials: The Young Adult librarians select materials (including fiction nonfiction, periodicals, CDs, DVDs, ebooks and audiobooks) targeted specifically for this age range, through the use of professional reviewing resources. Fiction written just for teens, in print and audio formats, is located in or near TeenSpace, along with several specialized collections of nonfiction, including:

• periodicals
• graphic novels
• poetry
• biographies
• test preparation titles

• middle and high school texbooks

The YA staff also selects materials appropriate for teens that are located in the adult nonfiction collection, Reference Room and Media Services Department. Teens are expected to make full use of the Library’s extensive holdings as well as the services of the Computer Center. Teens are also welcome to choose DVDs, CDs, ebooks and audio-books from the Library’s Media collection.

The Young Adult department is also responsible for the Library’s teen web site, TeenSpace. The site features links (related to homework help, college and careers, reading and more) that have been reviewed and selected by the Young Adult librarians.

Programs: The Young Adult department offers a variety of programs of interest to teens. Most popular is our annual babysitting workshop offered each fall.  The department also sponsors occasional films, a summer reading club, and activities related to Teen Read Week. We have also offered cooking and craft workshops, college information programs, study skills workshops, and more, all specifically targeted to this age group. Suggestions from teens are always welcome.

We invite teens in grades 7-12 to join our TeVo (Teen Volunteer) program. Based on their skills and interests teens will be matched with particular jobs in the library as they become available.   Being a teen volunteer may not result in regularly scheduled weekly hours.  Contact TeenSpace for further information.

Frequently asked questions

What is TeenSpace?

If you’re in grades 7-12, TeenSpace is a place designed for you. Here, you can read, relax, and receive expert Reader’s Advisory assistance (that is, help selecting books) from librarians specializing in services for teens.

When is TeenSpace open?

TeenSpace is open the same hours as the rest of the library. A teen specialist is available between 1-9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays (9-1 during the summer) and 1-5 p.m. on Sundays when the library is open.

What services do you offer?

A place just for teens to read, relax and work together with friends.

Reader’s Advisory services – if you are looking for good books to read for fun or for an assignment, just ask one of the librarians.

Registration for teen programs.

Please Note: TeenSpace is devoted to Reader’s Advisory, rather than Reference service. While we are happy to provide you with some tips to start off your research, if you have a heavy-duty research question, your next step will be a visit to the Reference Room.
What kinds of programs does Young Adult Services offer?

For over 20 years, Young Adult Services has sponsored a hugely popular babysitting workshop for teens in the fall. If you attend all four sessions, you are eligible to be included on our babysitters list, which lots of Port parents consult when they are looking for babysitters. Every summer, we offer a variety of programs and a teen summer reading club – a great way to read for fun AND win cool prizes. In October we celebrate “Teen Read Week” with lots of activities designed to encourage teens to “Take Time to Read.” Other programs we have offered include cooking and craft workshops, film screenings, mystery weekends, science fiction festivals, college information programs, and more.

We are always looking for suggestions from teens – let us know what kinds of programs you would like to attend!

Is there a Youth Advisory Council?

We have had a Young Adult Council in the past, and we would like to re-establish it, if there is sufficient interest. If you are a teen in grades 7-12 and you would like to be a part of this, please let us know!

How can I volunteer?

To become a TeVo (Teen Volunteer) sinply complete a TeVo application and based on your application, TeenSpace will match your skills and interests to particular jobs as they become available within the library. Please note, being a volunteer may not result in a regularly scheduled weekly volunteer job at the library.  Contact TeenSpace for more information.

How can I contact you?

You are always welcome to drop by or call us at (516) 883-4400, ext. 148. You can also e-mail us at youngadult@pwpl.org. Please do – we’d love to hear from you.  TeenSpace is also on Facebook. Check us out!