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Community Building, Library Spotlight, Seattle

Passport to Learning

By Jennifer | November 10th, 2008 | 1 Comment

CC photo by javacolleen http://www.flickr.com/photos/javacolleen/2885998003/I got my library passport stamped this weekend at the International District/Chinatown Branch of Seattle Public Library. SPL has handed out passports with all 27 library locations represented, to celebrate the successful completion of the Library’s 10-year building program, Libraries for All. Patrons who get a stamp from all the libraries by January will have a really cool passport with 27 unique stamps and get entered into a drawing for a prize. The architect of my local branch even created a special additional stamp for the celebration. There are groups, like the hiking Mountaineers, who are working together to visit every branch, passports in hand.

Not only do I love the serendipitous discovery of stuff on the shelf at another branch (eg. after Sunday’s find, I now have a new favorite movie Waitress), I’m a big fan of passports and stamps. At school, my kids have been doing the Passport Geography Club, another fine example of motivational learning. And I know that there are summer reading programs for all ages all over the place, but I’ve been thinking…

Used with permission from versea\'s flickr photostreamWhy don’t we use a similar motivational effort to encourage folks to explore libraries and learning in other ways? What about a “Reading Passport” with sections for different disciplines or literature from different periods? What about one with a section to stamp if you were a part of a discussion about a book or if you did an impromptu book talk on the bus? And how cool would it be if we got to the point where people would include their library passport credentials on their resume or as a part of their political campaigns?

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