Tuesday, November 18, 2014

My review of Games in libraries

Games in Libraries: Essays on Using Play to Connect and InstructGames in Libraries: Essays on Using Play to Connect and Instruct by Breanne A Kirsch
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book as it explored games mainly in the context of university libraries. There was a quote from Scott Nicholson, Associate Professor at Syracuse University saying that we need to look as games as "a distinct form of storytelling" and then he highlighted elements of good story telling and draws connections to games. "Storytelling creates a comforting and inviting environment for people to spend time in the library".

The book has chapters which provide overviews and chapters which provide case studies, including what the library learned from the experience of running games programs. It was particularly interesting to see how some of the libraries evaluated the effectiveness of the games. For one it was a measure of who had not previously been in the library.

There is also an extensive resources section which highlights key publications to help libraries explore games. I was thrilled to find that one of my papers was included in this section. It was very kind of the chapter author to include this reference.

While this publication focuses on games in an academic and school library context, there will be much to appeal to public library staff as well. Go and read this book. It also provides suggestions for other key games and library books to explore (so go and read these as well).

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