Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

MakerSpace: Fun with Lettering and Quarto Books

Lettering might seem like an odd thing to discuss when it comes to making, but there are lots of great ways that you can include lettering with making. If you have read any of my makerspace posts, you know that I have mentioned how my teens tend to be into more traditional arts and crafts as well as technology, so we work hard to find ways to combine the two. And some of those ways include lettering.

I’ll be honest, the ideas all stemmed from my love of these books on lettering from Quarto Books.

lettering3 I’ve already shared a post about some of our chalkboard related activities, which you can find here:

TPiB: DIY Chalkboard Fun

Making Text Transfer Chalkboard Speech Bubbles

MakerSpace: Button Maker Challenges

TPiB: MakerSpace Poetry

 

 

lettering6And we do a lot of stuff with Sharpies. And I mean a lot. You can find some of those activities here:

TPiB: Sharpie Art! Quick and Easy Programming

MakerSpace: Button Maker Challenges

 

 

 

 

 

But there are a couple of other books on lettering which we also enjoy that have spurred some additional creative ideas. Those ideas include combining digital media with hand lettering to create our own books and bullet journalling.

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Book Making

There are a variety of great books out there about making both books and mini books. Combining those books with our lettering books, we have created a pretty cool book making station in our Teen MakerSpace. We help teens use our digital media lab to create photos, which they then print out and turn into books. They can add text digitally, but we also encourage them to use a variety of lettering techniques to give their mini books a pop. And just this past week we purchased an old school manual typewriter that teens can use to type poems or add text to their books. You can read more about our mini books here: MakerSpace: Instagram Scrapbook and Mini Books.

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Bullet Journals

Bullet journals are very popular right now. I learned about them from Librarian Drea at ALA. Actually, several librarians I follow online engage in bullet journaling. And the Irving library in Texas has a monthly bullet journaling program.

What is a bullet journal? According to Bullet Journal.com, “The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less.” Basically, a bullet journal is whatever you want it to be, but it is not necessarily a long form diary. It is composed more of short lists, goals, and more.

Buzzfeed has a variety of posts on Bullet Journals that may help you get started:

WTF Is A Bullet Journal And Why Should You Start One

Here’s How To Use A Bullet Journal For Better Mental Health

29 Bullet Journal Layouts For Anyone Trying To Be Healthy

23 Bullet Journal Ideas That Are Borderline Genius

You can also find a lot about Bullet Journalling on Pinterest:

Bullet journal, Bullets and Journal ideas on Pinterest

Many journals can be kind of expensive, so we made our own using 1 inch binders, scrapbook paper, a variety of cool pens, washi tape and stickers. And to add a bit of tech, we made inspirational quote pictures for our covers.

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The Teen filling out her bullet journal at home. She still uses it months later.

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I taught the teens about Infographics and they made their own biographies in Infographic form

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An example of a cover made using our digital media lab

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Sample bullet journal pages. This teen made a page of their favorite book quotes.

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The Bestie writing in her handmade bullet journal

As a librarian, I like that the idea of books keeps coming up in our Teen MakerSpace. Whether it’s making our own books or just journalling about books or making our favorite books quotes into memes using our digital media lab, we love to find ways to circle back to books. And we love that there are books out there not only inspiring our making, but that teens can use to help support their making. We are about making, but we are also about books and reading. It’s not one or the other, but both.

Win Quarto Books

This week I’m posting all about Quarto Books and the various ways that we use them in our Teen MakerSpace. Because I use Quarto Books a lot, I contacted them and asked them if we could host a Quarto Books week and they have generously agreed to donate a set of 5 Quarto Books for us to giveaway. Thank you Quarto Books! To be entered to win, you must be a U.S. resident and need to do the Rafflecopter thing below by Friday, November 18th, 2016 by Midnight.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

MakerSpace: Button Maker Challenges

At The Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County (OH), we have found that one of the most popular activities among our teens in our Teen MakerSpace is making buttons. We run into a lot of our teens around town that look like this:

Buttons, buttons every where!

Buttons, buttons every where!

I spy a teen guy with a ton of buttons

I spy a teen guy with a ton of buttons

But we started to notice that teens were just coming in, printing of a couple of pictures (and engaging in some serious copyright infringement while doing so), and leaving. We really wanted to find a way to encourage teens to get more creative in their button making. So we took the idea of challenge cards and created a variety of button making challenges.

Our button making challenge station

Our button making challenge station

A lot of our challenges are based on ideas we found in some of the books we have right there in our Maker Collection. We scoured through our collection and our resources to come up with creative and fun challenges. And we asked the teens in the Teen MakerSpace for their ideas as well.

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Books inspire button making

We then created Button Making Challenge cards and put them out for our teens to look at and get inspired by.

Button Making Challenge Cards

Button Making Challenge Cards

We have been excited to see a lot more scenes that look like this in our Teen MakerSpace:

Teens in the Teen MakerSpace

Teens in the Teen MakerSpace

So here is a look at some of our challenges and what our teens have created in response to them.

Sharpie Art Buttons

I am obsessed with Sharpies. So discovering there were books about Sharpie art was a gift. We do a variety of simple Sharpie art activities. One of the simplest is to invite teens to color with Sharpies and turn their artwork into buttons.

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The Teen hard at work on some Sharpie art buttons

Sharpie art buttons!

Sharpie art buttons!

Typography Books + Sharpie Art Books=Button Awesomesauce Magic!

Typography Books + Sharpie Art Books = Button Awesomesauce Magic!

Stick Figure Art Buttons

Using a couple of the stick figure art books we have found, teens love to turn their stick figure art into buttons.

Sharpies + Stick Figure Art

Sharpies + Stick Figure Art

Stick Figure Art Buttons!

Stick Figure Art Buttons!

Finger Print Art Buttons

I have already talked some about our obsession with fingerprint art buttons. You can read more about it here. It’s a lot of fun and makes the cutest buttons.

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A teen makes a finger print elephant

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Fingerprint Art Buttons!

More finger print art buttons

More finger print art buttons

Chalkboard Buttons

We discovered that there is chalkboard paper, which can be used to make buttons. Instead of using regular chalk, our teens use chalk markers in combination with art books The Art of Chalk and The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering to create original chalk masterpieces which they then make into buttons.

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The TMNTs in Chalkboard Art form

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Chalkboard art buttons

Sidewalk chalk poetry and a camera

Sidewalk chalk poetry and a camera

Map Art Buttons

Using some of the ideas in the Map Art Lab book (pictured below), we made a variety of map art buttons.

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Map Art Buttons

Map art button

Map art button

The Map Art Lab book is also the source of The Books of Your Heart Button. For more information, see this post.

The Books of Our Heart Button

The Books of Our Heart Button

Coloring Pages Buttons

We have a variety of coloring pages in our Teen MakerSpace and encourage the teens to color and then cut out a portion of their page to make their buttons. It asks them to look with a creative eye about editing an already laid out design and only use a portion of it.

Coloring pages buttons

Coloring page buttons

Fill in the Blank Buttons

It’s like Mad Libs, but in button form. The teens can create a quote – like a funny story or a question – and leave a blank. Then when they meet people in the street they can ask them to fill in the blank.

Digital Media Lab Buttons

We wanted to create some button challenges that invited teens to use our iPad lab to do some digital media creation and photo manipulation. There are a variety of apps that will let you use filters, add artwork, and add text to your pictures to create great photos. In addition, we have a green screen so we wanted to get our teens using that as well. When they create the picture they like, they can then size them and print them out and turn them into buttons.

Made with a Scrabble board and an iPad with photo manipulating apps

Made with a Scrabble board and an iPad with photo manipulating apps

Some of the digital media lab challenges include:

Turn your favorite book quote into a button.
Star in a book cover for your fave book using a picture you take and photo apps.
Turn your photo into a mini comic book or graphic novel.
Turn your photo into a meme.

Green screen photos make for fun buttons

Green screen photos make for fun buttons

The Teen dressed as a Weeping Angel. Hipstamtic filters.

The Teen dressed as a Weeping Angel. Hipstamtic filters.

More photos manipulated with photo apps and turned into buttons. Washi tape makes up the borders on some of these buttons.

More photos manipulated with photo apps and turned into buttons. Washi tape makes up the borders on some of these buttons.

Teens love to turn their personal photos into buttons.

He made a button of himself wearing all his buttons that says, "I Like Buttons". It's very meta.

He made a button of himself wearing all his buttons that says, “I Like Buttons”. It’s very meta.

By creating a variety of challenges, we have found ways to get teens creating original artwork that they then turn into buttons. It has been fun to see what our teens create, and we have found ways to get teens to stay and talk a bit instead of just printing off a quick picture. I feel like our challenges are helping teens learn a little bit more about themselves, the creative process, and art in general. It has also challenged us to look more deeply at the books in our collection and find creative ways to incorporate art into the Teen MakerSpace.

 

Challenge Cards: buttonchallengefirstpage buttonchallengesecondpage