Virtual Volunteer Ideas for Teens

Virtual Volunteer: Reviews

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Thanks to some intrepid Teen Services Librarians, we have started to collecting ideas on how Teen Services Library staff can still provide volunteering during Shelter-In-Place. This post focuses on guidelines for Book Review! We will update as new library systems provide their Book Review Guidelines.

San Leandro Public Library

San Leandro Public Library offers 1 hour of volunteer time credit for each book review written, up to 10 hours maximum.

Here is a link to San Leandro Public Library’s Book Review instructions: Google Doc

5/5/2020 – San Leandro Public Library has since published more Virtual Volunteer Opportunities for their community on their Website.

Digital Reading Buddies: Join young readers (grades 1-6) on a Library-hosted Zoom chat and support reading fluency by listening to them read and encouraging them

Reviews: Read and review YA and adult books for the Teen Lounge Newsletter and receive 1 hour of service per review. Read the guidelines for reviews here.

Articles: Write about your COVID-19 experiences, what you see happening in the world, self-care tips — or something else!

Write a Card to a Senior: Make and write cards for seniors — to celebrate birthdays, holidays, or just everyday joys. Supplies can be picked up from the library and finished cards can be dropped off during open hours.

Santa Clara County Library

I heard that you guys were looking to put together some guidelines regarding virtual book reviews. I sent the following criteria to my teens, and have gotten 9 reviews back so far! Hope you/BAYA find this helpful:

Although volunteering at the library is cancelled for the foreseeable future, I wanted to offer an opportunity to earn some hours remotely for anyone who is interested. For those up for it, I will offer one hour of community service for every book review that is written and posted on our library’s catalog. Here are my guidelines: 

  • It can be any book you want, but it has to be a book that you have read (If you want help accessing e-books/e-audiobooks remotely, just email me)
  • A review should be at least 100 words 
  • The content of the review should be written by you, not copy and pasted from another website
  • The review should include some information about the book’s plot, as well as what you thought of the book/story/characters/setting etc.
  • The review should contain age appropriate language (no swearing, etc.)
  • The review should be spoiler free

Here is a link to a specific book with reviews that are examples of what I’m looking for (see the longer reviews toward the bottom of the page under Community Activity):

Alameda County Library

Alameda County has suspended all library operations including Volunteers.

We are in the middle of revising our volunteer operations but we offer volunteer hours for online volunteering opportunities. Normally a book review is worth one hour of volunteer service.

Because of the Shelter in Place order, we are looking at other ways to connect Teens to volunteer opportunities virtually including online TAG groups and Teen written blogs and book lists.

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