Pathfinders Cambrian Library Staff: Creativity and Innovation Creates a Team!

Pathfinder is a series of blogs about intrepid library staff who are leading interesting programs that you may not yet know about.

You may have noticed a change in the past year or so at the Cambrian Library.

The walls tell the tale of a new and exciting change to the Library!  Blank walls are now filled with lively creatures in the Children's Area!  Halloween, winter holidays, Valentine's and St. Patrick's Day decorations have caused customers to say:

"The decorations are amazing!"  Cathy

"Thank you for the Halloween Decoration!  It’s wonderful."

"It’s beautiful!"

"I think you’ve done it.  I love our Library."

Let's visit some of the exciting things that are happening at Cambrian Library!

Scavenger Hunt

In October, Librarian Laurel suggested starting a scavenger hunt throughout the Children's Area.  Thanks to creative imagination of Librarian Thu, this program definitely led to increased popularity in all areas of the Library!

The idea morphed into a Find the Turkey Scavenger Hunt in November; Find the Snowman (differently colored scarves); Find What the Cupid Skeleton is Holding in February; Find the Green Thing that the Skeleton is Holding in March, etc.!

Recently, Cambrian's mascot, Gerald the Giraffe's baby siblings have become the focus of the scavenger hunt.

Children love these scavenger hunts and it has become all the rage!  Children have asked if the hunt can be changed EVERY 3 days!  Presently, the hunt will continue to change once a month.

Best of all, though, is how the Cambrian Library Staff have eagerly participated in some of the character creations in the monthly Scavenger Hunts!

Last December, many staff members picked up a snowman to decorate in different ways.  You may have noticed different animals, a baby snowchild, and very cleverly decorated snow people.  Each one was decorated by different staff members!  Librarian Thu has enjoyed decorating the skeletons for our February and March hunts.  In February, she made cupid wings and costumes for each skeleton.  In March, she had fun creating the different green objects.  During the summer, she had fun making hats, rafts, and most recently, backpacks.  In September, check out the chalkboards for the letter they wrote and what they drew on their board!

When you are at Cambrian Library, take a look at the Scavenger Hunt on the 2nd Floor!

New Programs

Here are some of the exciting new programs or displays that you can now find at the Cambrian Library!

  • Fandom Swap:  Librarian Thu created this program for those people who need to make more room for their different fandoms.  It is a way to share with others and to make new friends!  This program occurs on the 3rd Sunday of the month from 2:00-4:00 p.m.
  • Resume Watch Party:  Librarian Laurel realized that job seekers who have never looked for a job or who have not searched in some time, might not have access to attending SJPL Works programs.  This would be unfortunate, because the Career Librarians at SJPL Works are very knowledgeable and caring!  They want to see you find the job that you want!  If you can't make it to one of SJPL Works programs, you can come to Cambrian Library to attend this program in person.  Got a question about job searching?  This is the place to come for job-related questions!
  • Read Away Your Fines Corner:  If you are a teen or kid, you can read away your fines in this corner near the New Picture Book area!  Just let the Info Desk staff know!  Bounded by a seasonal book display, the 2nd Floor ASK 4 board, and the Library Program Informational Display, this corner is very relaxing!  Comfortable and quiet, this corner has become popular for people who want to relax or to have a short meeting!  Librarians Thu and Laurel wanted to make sure that you have a comfortable spot to read away those fines.  You can ask for a comfortable cushion, too!
  • Contests:  In March and April, customers were asked to complete Women's History Month and Mental Health Awareness Quizzes and Poetry Contests.  Adult customers didn't seem to show an interest in quizzes, so that is on pause for now.
  • Polls:  In the past, customers have been asked what kinds of activities help with their mental health, what are their pronouns, mark on the map your origin, leave a cooking/baking tip (people proudly shared favorite recipes,) how your disability helps you, share a fun family activity, and what makes you happy!  This activity has been very popular with adult customers, who requested fun activities like the Scavenger Hunt, but for adults!  Everyone wants to have fun at the Library!  This month, tell everyone about your favorite Banned Book and about your first library card!  Each of the polls celebrates one kind of awareness month.  If you are at Cambrian, check out the fun polls near the sliding door entrance and near Home and Garden on the 2nd Floor.
  • Volunteer-Led Reading Programs:  Cambrian Library is very fortunate to have many community members who are eager to share their love of reading with children!  Here are several programs led by volunteers:
    • Reading to Children is available from Monday through Wednesday.  The only week days without a reading program for children are Wednesdays and Fridays (Family Storytime is on Thursdays @ 11:00 a.m.):
      • With Ms. Aysha:  Mondays from 3:00-4:00 p.m.
      • With Ms. Lee:  Tuesdays from 3:00-4:00 p.m.
    • Reading to Furry Friends is an especially popular event that might attract 40+ people each month.  Held the 1st Wednesday of the month at 4:00-5:00 p.m., at least 3-6 therapy dogs will listen to kids read to them!
    • Mandarin Stories and Songs are available for those customers who want a full immersive experience in the Mandarin language for the whole family!  Ms. Liu is wonderful and has built quite a large audience on Saturdays from 10:30-11:00 a.m. in the Community Room.
  • 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten:  Recently refurbished by Emilie, take a look at the wonderful new rocket ships and planets on display.  Your child will watch in wonder as their rocket ship moves up the display until they reach 1,000 books!
  • Monthly 2nd Floor Reference Contributions:  Customers have been asked to list why they are thankful, what they want for Christmas, what they want for the new year, Valentine's wishes, and Gerald's birthday wishes.  These have been ENORMOUSLY popular!  Check it out!

Creativity Rules!

Creativity and innovation are at the soul of the Library!

The thought process at work in the Cambrian Library is that if a team is allowed to express themselves creatively and are not bound by strict guidelines, the team will flourish.

If you have any questions, please be sure to leave a comment below!