Library as Laboratory: Supporting Culture with Creative and Participative Digital Learning

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Presenters: Matt Gullett (Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County), Kelly Czarnecki (ImaginOn of the Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County), and Craig Davis (Youth Digital Arts Cyberschool)

Description: We will be presenting programs, ideas and software that support our patrons’ vital interest to connect, participate and create through digital art, music and video game development. Offering these programs and experiences helps learners to sustain their interests by becoming active agents in building essential 21st century skills and literacy. Many think that it is enough to sustain our institutions by maintaining a traditional stance in supporting learners through being a place of access to collections. The problem our priorities are not those of our patrons who have evolved toward wanting more interactive models of learning and using information. Such models that address how this new generational mindset connects and communicates through social networking and gaming are vital to our continuing success. Since many of our constituents need different types of support and opportunities to build literacy skills within a landscape of learning and creating using digital tools, we think that libraries should follow suit.

Intended Audiences:

  • Administrators and others who hold the purse strings and approve policies
  • Instructional librarians
  • Technology librarians
  • Youth librarians
  • Other: Educators and learners


  • Academic libraries
  • Public libraries
  • School libraries

Presentation slides:
Matt's slides on Library as Laboratory
Kelly's slides on supporting a culture

Listen to an MP3 audio file of this session (35MB, 38:27)

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