Spark A Reaction!: Summer Reading With A Geek Influence

Spark a Reaction artwork


So I recently got a job as a Teen Services Librarian, right before Summer Reading was scheduled to start (my first program was last Tuesday). This year’s theme for teens is Spark A Reaction, a science theme to go with STEM. So what else is a Geek Librarian to do but have Geek inspired crafts?

For my kick off party I chose a Game Night. It was simple, and a nice way to end the school year and start the summer, especially since it fell on the last day of school. I also knew I wouldn’t be in the library more than a few days after I started, so I didn’t want anything too big.

Steampunk Nite

My next scheduled program is a Steampunk program (tomorrow nite in fact). Spark A Reaction lends itself so well to this since the artwork has clockwork and pieced together contraptions on it (see above). I play to have the teens make necklaces, journals, and duck tape top hats. I’ll include a short presentation so the teens can understand the theme and a some books on display from the collection that fit the the theme for them to check out. I also plan to wear a costume (Not that I need an excuse to dress up, but being a Youth Librarian means I can get away with it!).

Dr. Who

After that we are making Sonic Screwdrivers. With a little clay, you can turn a pen into a a replica Sonic Screwdriver and still be able to use it to write. I’ve pulled some Dr. Who books for the teens, since this is Summer Reading.


My third program is zombie themed. We are making Zombie Felt dolls. I haven’t gotten the supplies for this one yet, but with zombies being popular in books right now, and with that week’s tween craft being monsters, it’s a great program theme. We have a whole bunch of zombie books to have on display for the teens to hopefully check out.

Movie Nite

Then we are having a movie nite, and I’m thinking we’ll watch Catching Fire. Because who doesn’t love Katniss and a little dystopian chaos?

Game Nite

Another Game Nite, which the teens usually love.

Best Game in the Universe!

This is something they had at the workshop for Summer Reading. Everyone who comes puts writes down something and drops it in a hat. Then they break up into teams. The teens go one at a time pulling one of the slips of paper out of the hat and having to act it out like charades. The teams get one point for every correct guess they can get it in a set amount of time. The second round is like the game Taboo, but we are using Pictionary instead. For the third round they can only give a one word clue. We played it at the workshop, and it was really fun. I can’t wait to see what the teens come up with.

Galaxy T-Shirts

Our final craft is a painting t-shirts to look like galaxies. This was a suggested craft in my Youth Services class, and they turn out really cool. You take a black t-shirt, fabric paint, and things like old toothbrushes and sponges, and speckle the shirts with paint to look like the stars. I pulled a star atlas for inspiration. I’m really looking forward to this one since it looks like a lot of fun and I want to see what the teens paint on their shirts.

Our final party of the summer is going to be Catching Fire themed, but beyond having some nerf guns, I haven’t thought it all through yet.

So here’s to a Geek Themed Summer Reading Program!


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