Reigniting a Community Pillar

Modern libraries are no longer just quiet spaces reserved for researching facts and borrowing books -- they serve a critical role in our communities. Groups from young children to teens to seniors all benefit from a library’s resources and programs, but serving this many groups and helping them coexist can be a challenge. We provide tools and strategies that help libraries redefine themselves as a place of multimodal learning. We work with libraries to develop innovative programming, bridge the divide between patron groups, and embrace growth and uncertainty so that they can thrive in the reality of ever-changing technology and budgets.

Staff Team Building

Library staff are front line workers addressing wide ranging needs in their community. Their role has only been heightened during the pandemic of 2020. We provide teams much needed replenishment by playfully connecting them with each other while providing strategies to approach stressful situations in a new way. In-person or virtually, we introduce participants to new skills moving them outside their comfort zone and challenging them with the idea that the pursuit of perfection works against their progress individually and as a team.

Youth Services Trainings 

Drawn in by resources such as computers or media access, teens are a significant consumer of digital resources at the library, but it’s important to have programming that peaks their curiosity and challenges their creativity while promoting active, real world skills. Our virtual, half or full day training introduces library staff to programming tools that appeal to tweens and teens with a wide range of interests and abilities. The F.L.O.P. framework presents current research in positive psychology and helps participants grow more confident in creating interactive, engaging outreach programs. Library programmers will leave with actionable strategies and tools for helping engage and motivate teens to practice, fail, and try again.

Programming Kits

Skill toys are an integral part of our youth services trainings, and they’re conveniently packaged for staff to begin using immediately.

Flop Ball Kits have everything a programmer needs to break the ice and get teens growing and flowing. Kits contain 36 Flop Balls, 6 decks of cards, and a USB drive with instructional resources including instructional videos and animations, discussion prompts, and programming ideas. Our F.L.O.P. mindfulness framework, which helps teens practice strategies to thrive in the messiness of learning, growth, and change, is a central part of the kits. Flop Balls can be customized with your choice of fabric colors and screen-printed logos.

Skill Toy Kits contain a variety of skill toys from around the world. Toys such as kendama, flower sticks, and spinning plates appeal to a wide range of play styles and challenge tweens and teens to level up through patience and practice. Skill toy kits are great for station programming and self-directed play. It comes with a program guide that includes DIY activities, history of the toys, coaching tips, and programming ideas.

“Paul and Dawn are tremendous! The combination of the skill toys and the principles behind the exercises they lead you through is a perfect learning pairing. Not only are workshop participants implementing the program at their own public libraries, my supervisor has asked me to lead our Library Development team through a few of the exercises for team building!”

Jasmine Rockwell, Youth Services Consultant, State Library of North Carolina

“Flow Circus' Fail Better training was so on point, Virginia Youth Services Librarians were asking for a repeat before they even left the building. Dawn and Paul's pacing of the program, hands on, collaborative and high energy program was the exact answer to the challenge of programming for T/w/eens that meets critical thinking and STEM imperatives for public libraries right now. The group brainstorming left staff brimming with ideas for programs from passive to full scale sessions with affordable, unplugged, apparatus accessible to all. I cannot more highly recommend this program.”

Nan B. Carmack, Ed.D., Director, Library Networking and Development, Library of Virginia

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