My notes on #libcampuk12: Playing games & Organising your own library camp

I only managed to attend two full sessions at this library camp, one of which I led together with Claire @calire.

The time in between those and food breaks was filled with socialising, having meetings that I had arranged ahead with people I don’t normally see and trying to get other people to arrange local library camps.

Making games for libraries & play, led by Andrew Walsh @andywalsh999

  • “games and that sort of thing”
  • Andrew has developed games that teach library skills, e.g. Seek! -> afterwards more in depth discussion with players
  • other examples for interactive literacy learning: story cubes, Gloom, Say Anything, Inform7
  • games can be used in education/libraries even if they haven’t been developed for educational purposes- > e.g. teach about architecture (ask @miss_wisdom for more info as I can’t remember which game she mentioned)
  • exchange of ideas to use in school libraries
  • why not try: treasure hunt using QR codes, geocaching, SCVNGR
  • don’t forget about aesthetics when developing a game -> you can have a best game in the world but people are not going to play if it looks boring/cheap
  • there are still prejudices against games and gaming -> positives might not even enter the debate if knowledge not there -> advocacy needed -> how quick can culture change?
  • games are not just for kids! games often seen as “not serious” or “worthy”
  • use games in positive ways in libraries and education
  • take different learning styles into account -> same for games as other things -> different motivation needs
  • don’t be scared of games -> try it before you moan about it
  • the Army uses games for recruitment and training, e.g. Triage
  • The use of fines is a bit like “negative” gamification -> play nice (by the rules) and you don’t get fines
  • loyalty schemes are so popular because it’s like a game with rewards -> rewarding people encourages them to do what you want (I learned about “bootsing” which means getting more reward points on your Boots card by doing certain things, e.g. use self-service till)
  • examples of games to get data/crowdsourcing (some more open about goals than others): Centre for Disease Control (@AEBMcN knows more about this), Microtask’s Digitalkoot for National Library of Finland, Trove for National Library of Australia, Old Weather, High Tea
  • how can YOU use games in YOUR library?
  • links: upcoming gamification course on Coursera, Gamification wiki, Lemon Tree

Run your own library camp, led by me and Claire @calire

  • a session that we proposed to get the message across that library camps can be very easy to organise and that new organisers are needed to keep the ideas fresh
  • you don’t necessarily need funding to run a library camp as small camps have managed without funding, e.g. Leeds #libcampls -> only really need funding if you want to provide food. There are always many people who want to bring food/cake – let them and your food bill stays low.
  • library camps have so far survived without tickets fees and we hope it’ll stay that way
  • especially for local library camps you don’t need much more than a room, post-it notes, some paper plates and napkins – and people!
  • it’s annoying when participants cancel last minute and there is no time to give away the spaces to others who would have been interested to attend -> ideas: oversell, or charge for cancellations if cancelled after a specified date
  • the demand/need for library camps is still there, so don’t just say you want to go to one – make it happen!!
  • Richard Veevers @richardveevers says: “it’s been so easy” “just do it”
  • The need for a library camp toolkit was expressed. I wrote a checklist after organising Library camp Leeds that might fill the gap:

Having attended two big library camps and two small ones (Manchester and Leeds) now I have to say that I prefer the smaller ones as it’s easier to chat to more people and personally I got more out of those.

The wifi situation at this library camp was not ideal as most people couldn’t log on but I actually saw that as a positive because it forced people to talk to people who were with them in the room.


About Carolin

Gas station attendant of the mind (librarian), learner, reader, googler, traveller, library camper. My personal views.
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4 Responses to My notes on #libcampuk12: Playing games & Organising your own library camp

  1. Pingback: Summary: Conferences, events and networking « #uklibchat

  2. Pingback: Practical suggestions for running your own Library Camp » Ginformation Systems

  3. Pingback: Practical suggestions for running your own Library Camp | Ginformation Systems

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