Professional and Personal Resilience Woven into Training

This past month, we completed three different train-the-trainer sessions for the State Library of North Carolina and the Maryland State Library. With their newly unpackaged 6 packs of flop balls in hand, the tween and teen librarians were ready to learn new skills and programming ideas. From a clapping contest to inventing tricks to a stack challenge, we modeled a variety of activities they could use in their communities. Then they went into breakout rooms to generate an even bigger list of ideas.

We’ve heard already that virtual DIY programs are being planned and a few libraries have ordered flop balls to do even more. That’s exciting. Equally exciting is the impact our Flop-osophy had on these front line professionals that have been serving their communities under extremely stressful conditions over the last year.

We wove our FLOP strategies throughout the session knowing that they would be important for the librarians to share with the tweens and teens they serve, but also for themselves. As one survey respondent wrote, “The acronym FLOP was important to me. Each letter feels like a mantra to help throughout the day and life in general.”

Here are a few other survey comments showing that the impact of the session went beyond just how to run a flop ball session with kids:

~ “I was able to step away from the sense of being overwhelmed, and the constant barrage of gloom and doom that has been brought on by COVID-19 and the news media.” 

~ “I have used what I learned and have spent time outside of the library using the flop balls and exercises with my family at home. It is a great activity for a break during my son's remote learning days.”

~ “While I practice and encourage others in the ways of positive thinking and having a growth mindset, I honestly had not considered my own use of it in programming,  looking at variables when something doesn't go as planned etc.”

We love that our trainings can have an impact on many levels for participants. They walk away feeling refreshed, have strategies for their own personal well-being, and have tools for professional programming. We knew we had that in our in-person sessions and are happy that we’ve been able to continue to deliver in our virtual trainings. Because it’s needed now more than ever. 

~ "Thank you for an energizing and inspiring training this afternoon for our Maryland library staff.  It was the perfect blend of fun and personal and professional learning and many things applicable for our personal care as well as our work with colleagues and teens. I think this training came at a perfect time for them; thank you so much for your time and talents!" Carrie Sanders, Youth Services Coordinator, Maryland State Library

To learn more about our train-the-trainer virtual and in-person sessions, visit