The Studio@NPL: 21st Century Teen Learning Labs

NPLF and the library are working together to implement an afterschool space for teens that will help young people become makers and creators of media, rather than just consumers of it. The Studio is based on recent research dealing with at-risk youth who may struggle in normal classroom settings. Mentors are the key component within the labs helping to guide and give confidence to teens.

“Digital media are profoundly influencing young people’s lives, their behavior, their civic participation, and where and how they learn,” said Robert Gallucci, President of the MacArthur Foundation. “These innovative new teen labs are designed to provide young people with engaging and diverse opportunities for learning and exploration beyond the classroom. The nation’s libraries and museums play an important role in leveling the playing field by providing greater access to learning experiences that equip our young people with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the 21st Century.”

Through Limitless Libraries, NPL has access to a large group of active library users who are excited to go beyond consuming our books, movies and music.  The Studio@NPL will connect teens with the mentors and tools necessary to inspire collaboration and creativity so they can write, record and produce original work for school or personal projects.  Plans include a studio at the downtown library and a mobile unit serving library branches.

More about our inspiration, Chicago Public Library’s YouMedia