The Library Ninja Blog

Go Center Police Officer Presenter

Officer Williams from the Dallas Police Department, dedicated his time during this week to talk to our teens in Teen Zone. Teens eager to know about who he is and what he does, and showed much interest through asking a verity of questions.

Officer Williams talked about his line of work during the night shift in comparison to how police officers are portrayed in movies like "21 Jump Street" or "Let's Be Cops". There are many stereotypes that he talked about, and wanted to make sure to express to our teens that not all Officers on duty are at the donut shop drinking a cup of coffee, but rather the importance of them being very physically active in order to do there job. His experiences have been from car chases to jumping fences in order to help stop a theft from escaping, which in the long run, he ended with a serious injury.

Being an Officer is not an easy job at all, from dealing with people who have attitudes, to car chases, to being injured on the job while trying to stop a criminal. Yet, they find the time to mentor our youth about how it is rewarding knowing that they have done their job to save another life or prevent an accident. 


4/16/2015 by Veronica R. Add a Comment Share this:

YTC Teen Podcasting Workshop

I’m sure most of the adult readers of the teen blog already know how amazing podcasts are, Serial anyone? Regardless of your age, if you don’t know what a podcast is, hop onto your iTunes account and prepare to be amazed! Podcasts or podcasting involves prerecording an audio show and making it available to stream online or via an mp3-enabled device such as an iPhone. A podcast can be on whatever you want. Way back in October of last year, we held a podcasting workshop where teens were taught how to organize, record, and upload a podcast of their very own. We ended the program by all coming together and doing a podcast on the goings-on in popular culture. Since we recorded in October, some of what we talked about is a bit dated (we began by talking about Halloween), however some of the other things we discussed have had a sequel (s) added to the original story, i.e. Five Nights at Freddy’s and Divergent. So if you’re totally unfamiliar with either franchise, why not let some of our awesome teen podcasters give you a primer? 

APL’s Pop Culture Poison

Take a listen at what some of our teens talked about in our first pop culture podcast. You’ll be hearing me and some of our teens that couldn’t wait to share their views with the world which include Iman Gaber aka Emma J., Chase Lee-Clinton, aka Shady Canopy, and Johnny Nguyen aka, Pongo the Dog.

*The podcast is broken down into three different sections, so you don’t have to listen to the whole thing, though I recommend you at least listen to the intro and go from there.

Intro/Section One: Halloween & Horror

Some things of interest: We talked about the (at the time) upcoming films Ouija and Annabelle and how the original Ouija board used to have a slightly creepy Saturday morning commercial. (You can watch here it.) I shared a funny story about some questionable marketing decisions with the release of the 2007 horror film Alien Vs Predator: Requiem on Christmas Day (I mistakenly say Christmas Eve in the podcast).

Section Two: Divergent

I had Emma J and Shady Canopy school me on the YA dystopian series Divergent. This would be a fun listen before you head out to see the second film Insurgent.

Section Three: VG Bros. and Five Nights at Freddy’s

A couple of our gaming obsessed teens, Pongo the Dog (whom you may know if you visit The Lab) and Shady Canopy took the wheels and gave a breakdown on the indie-game hit Five Nights At Freddy’s. FNAF’s has everyone from teens, adults, to popular YouTubers shivering in their seats. What’s Five Nights at Freddy’s about? Well, why don’t you give this section a listen?

Of course listening isn’t enough when it comes to this game; afterwards, check out the many “Let’s Play” videos of FNAF’s and see why you’ll never look at Chuck E. Cheese’s the same way again.

Everyone did an amazing job and our hope is that with this program they’ll have built up the confidence to create podcasts of their own for the world to listen to! Here at Arlington Library’s Lab at the East Branch we have mics, headphones, and all of our laptops equipped with Audacity, a free audio editing software, that we also used on this podcast. So the question is: If you had a podcast, what would it be about? When you’ve figured it out, come on by and start recording!

Written by Amina D., YTC Intern

4/13/2015 Add a Comment Share this:

Teen Review by Hannah W...The 100

I spent my spring break like any normal, well-adjusted teenager should: binge-watchng TV shows on Netflix. One of the series I uploaded to my brain was The 100, a gripping post-apocalyptic tale about a group of delinquent teenagers sent down to earth from The Ark, the space station where all of humanity has lived for the past century in order to test the planet's viability for re-colonization.

I admit, I was skeptical. The plot sounds stereotypical and formulaic, but it really worked for this show. I was hooked. So when I found out my new favorite series was based on a book, I had to check it out. I was devastated to find that the plot was entirely different from the TV adaptation, but I quickly became invested. The 100 by Kass Morgan follows four different characters: Wells, the privileged goody-two-shoes son of the Chancellor, Clarke, the former girlfriend of  Wells, Bellamy, a lower class worker who will do anything to protect his sister, and Glass, one half of a star-crossed love affair who remains on the space station. Every character must make life or death decisions on a regular basis, and the consequences are often catastrophic.

From the intense political drama unfolding on the Ark, which is only hinted at, to the struggle to survive on a planet no human has set foot on in 100 years, which is all too realistic, The 100 is addictive. The emotional conflicts of the characters are well-developed- by this I mean you will be in physical pain due to the emotional trauma of reading this book- and the physical conflicts build suspense perfectly. However, some fairly predictable moments and the radically convenient and sort of overused plot device of isolating a group of teens reminded me that this was, in fact, a YA book, not an Actual Parallel Universe of Feels-Related Suffering.

For fans of the CW show as well of fans of a really good book, I definitely recommend The 100. 4 Stars - Great. Definitely Worth It.

Written by Hannah W.

Other books you may enjoy:


4/8/2015 Add a Comment Share this:

"Attack on Titan" Ban In The U.S.?

                           (Click the image above to read the original source)

So I hate to be the bearer of bad news, guys...

As if Attack on Titan being moved to Toonami's 2AM "death slot" wasn't already bad enough, but now looking back with hindsight, we can see that this was just their way of trying to break the news to us gently...

It's seems like just yesterday that we were getting amped about the Attack on Titan Live Action movie that's making its way to theaters this summer, while at the same time, still patiently waiting for season 2 of the anime to air. Now it seems we're going to be waiting forever. (Well, that is unless you're already looking into travel passports.)

For more info regarding the almost unbelievable decision to discontinue all Attack on Titan anime, manga, and other merchandise from being distributed within the U.S., you can view for yourself all of the disappointing details at the following source link: "Corrupting Our Youth:" FCC's Ban on Popular Anime In United States.

In case you're not in the mood to read a bunch of legal talk and censorship debate, here's a summary of how exactly we're going to be affected by this decision:

What we can expect to happen soon...

  • Attack on Titan is scheduled to be removed from Toonami's Saturday night action block, and will be replaced with old school Toonami line-up anime, Hamtaro effective April 1, 2015. 
  • Attack on Titan is scheduled to be removed completely from Netflix's streaming catalog by April 1, 2015.
  • The Attack on Titan live action film will not be shown in any U.S.. theaters upon the time of its scheduled worldwide release, August 1, 2015. (Effective April 1, 2015)
  •, the host of the popular online Attack on Titan Tribute Game, will begin to terminate service to all of its North American based servers effective immediately on (you guessed it...) April 1, 2015. 

As to be expected, many die-hard fans have already taken to social media to start a petition against the FCC's decision to ban Attack on Titan from U.S.. consumers. While hope is still alive, go to the following link and sign your name on the petition to help repeal the discontinuing of Attack on Titan in the U.S.:AFW (Activists for Anime) Online Petition.

Hey, don't kill the messenger...

Click Here To Read The Original Source




And by the way... Gotcha.

Happy April Fools!

4/1/2015 by EJ A. Add a Comment Share this:

Exploring Our Past Poets

This marks the 5th week of Teen Zone's Teen Lit Poetry Workshop were teens have gather together to recite and create poetry. 

Teens learned and explored the markings of our past poets, which as allowed us to become the artist we are today whether through literature or art. 

Many Teens were excited to acknowledge a new poet they had never heard about.  For example: Langston Hughes, Lenore Kandel, Joyce Kilmer, Shel Silverstein, and Walt Whitman. The list can go on as teens began to read out loud, then recite creatively through emotions, musically through rap, or through dramatically acting it out:

Pot of Gold

Shel Silverstein

I when to find the pot of gold
That's waiting where the rainbow ends. 
I searched and searched and searched and searched 
And searched and searched, and then-
There it was, deep in the grass,
Under an old and twisty bough.
It's mine, it's mine, it's mine at last....
What do I search for now?



I Cry

Tupac Shakur

Sometimes when I'm alone I cry, Cause I am on my own. The tears I cry are bitter and warm. They flow with life but take no form I Cry because my heart is torn. 
I find it difficult to carry on. 
If I had an ear to confiding, I would cry among my treasured friend, but who do you know that stops that long, to help another carry on.
The world moves fast and it would rather pass by. Then to stop and see what makes one cry, so painful and sad. And sometimes...
I Cry and no one cares about why.


We will continue to remember our past poets as we memorize their poems that reflect our modernism and our individualities'. It is never to late to participate!

We look forward to another successful workshop this week on Wednesday at the Northeast Branch Library, Teen Zone. Check out how Classical Poetry can evolve the way we think and produce poems.  

3/30/2015 by Veronica R. Add a Comment Share this:

Gaming Update: Destiny

In case you missed it, last month many things have happened in the world of video games news but one of the most impactful events was the new update to the Destiny, Bungie's first-person shooter game, and its app have changed the game from being lackluster to top tier.

Bungie rolled out an update for Destiny's companion app for Android, iOS and the web today that makes managing your in-game inventory a lot easier. Destiny's companion app now has the option to move items to and from the Vault. App users will just need to go into their gear and inventory tabs to move things around, however, the option to transfer items to and from the Vault can't be accessed through the app's Tower Map.

Today's Bungie weekly update also has details on a new type of multiplayer feature: Inferno playlists. These new playlists, which hit the Crucible on March 3, changes how some Control games work by removing the tracker that shows the location of nearby enemy players. Inferno playlists has has simplified the scoring mechanic in the game in an effort to emphasize kills and objectives. There's less heavy ammo in Inferno, as players will only get one drop per match, which makes for heavy ammo camping almost non-existent. Finally, in the Inferno Control games, capture points are captured faster than in previous game modes allowing the players to get back into the fight a lot faster than before.

Lastly, the update brought to Destiny was the new matchmaking system for weekly heroic mission strikes that previously required players to have friends or acquaintances in order to do these in order to obtain both engrams, but even more so the highly valued strange coins needed to buy better equipment from the tower, which is the games main central hub. The new matchmaking system allows players to connect two other people, which allows the game to have a more social feel to it.
However, with all of the updates, most fans are still complaining over no matchmaking system for raid missions as well as random drop rates for some of the harder to obtain weapons such as the Gallajorn, which for this seasoned Destiny pro is the only weapon missing from his arsenal, but that is for another time.

Keep on gaming!

Destiny is rated T for Teen by ESRB

Written by Miguel M., YTC Intern

3/19/2015 Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Gaming

Teen Review by Cheyenne K....Princess Ben

Publisher's Description: Benevolence is not your typical princess and Princess Ben is certainly not your typical fairy tale. With her parents lost to unknown assassins, Princess Ben ends up under the thumb of the conniving Queen Sophia, who is intent on marrying her off to the first available specimen of imbecilic manhood.” Starved and miserable, locked in the castle’s highest tower, Ben stumbles upon a mysterious enchanted room. So begins her secret education in the magical arts: mastering an obstinate flying broomstick, furtively emptying the castle pantries, setting her hair on fire . . . But Ben’s private adventures are soon overwhelmed by a mortal threat facing the castle and indeed the entire country. Can Princess Ben save her kingdom from annihilation and herself from permanent enslavement?

Princess Ben is a fairy tale about a princess who is not accepted in her world. She finds herself in a locked room when she defies the queen. With nothing to do she finds a secret room and in that room is a book that holds some pretty interesting things.

You have to read Princess Ben's story to see what she does for her country with that exiting book. It has mystery and suspense threaded all along the story plot. With her parents lost to assassins, she has to find out that all she needed to do was be herself. Her aunt, the queen, is desperate to marry Ben off to the first suitor who will take her but Ben will have none of that, if she gets a say or not.

You will find yourself liking this book even if you don't like fairy tales. Never underestimate what a girl can do. Prince Chamberpot and his father will find she is quite the handful and maybe you will too! 4 STARS!!!

Other books you may enjoy:

3/14/2015 Add a Comment Share this:

Teen Photoshoot Event @ The Arlington Animal Shelter!

During this past February, newbies as well as a few already "seasoned" photogs met every Thursday for our weekly Photography Workshop For Teens hosted at the Salvation Army's YET (Youth Education Town) Center in downtown Arlington. In this workshop, we took photography a step further beyond the 'selfie,' and after getting some of the basics down, (shooting, angles, editing, etc..) teens let their creativity run wild and the outcome was awesome photo projects that are bound to make their friends jealous as well as gain them a couple of followers on Insta in the process. (Okay... maybe we took a couple selfies here and there.) Check out one of our awesome of "Cover Art Imitation" Projects:

  Photographed by Haru and Kenji


Typology of... socks? (What is "typology?" Find out here.)

So after 3 weeks of tackling one artsy project after another and with only one more week remaining, we thought it'd only be right to go out with a BANG for our final session so...

Animal Photoshoot

Well, why not? That's right! APL, The YET, and the good folks in Animal Services joined forces to put together an off-the-chain photoshoot event, with shots of the animals taken BY TEENS, and held at the Arlington Animal Shelter! And we'll just let their photos speak for themselves...


Awesome, right?

The only bigger challenge we faced other than persuading our restless breed of "talent" to show us their good sides was holding back our own teens from bringing these furry guys back on the bus ride home with us. Special thanks to our awesome animal photographer instructors for creating an amazing studio set-up/ feel as well as sharing important tips in photographing live animals.

Like I mentioned earlier, there were a few who weren't quite ready for the magic to end, so a couple of them decided to go the few extra steps by speaking to our Animal Services professionals about volunteering for the shelter, and being apart of the effort in giving back to our community. So what's the best way to sum up the evening? I'd say incredible on so many levels. Job well done, guys.

Feeling like you might've missed out? This doesn't have to be the end of the world, just be sure to stay posted on all of our current and upcoming teen programs (Blogging, Robotics, Japan Day, and much, much more) on our library's event calendar!

3/9/2015 by EJ A. Add a Comment Share this:
Topics: Digital Media

Art Lovers Challenge


Teens in Teen Art Studio at the Northeast Branch Library, Teen Zone, challenged themselves through literature and art. They picked out a quote that they admired and liked, and began painting what they felt would best fits the quote. The results were fantastic! They took the time to really think about the quotes in reflection to what it means, but most importantly, what it means to them. Some paintings were abstract, while others were done so that the viewer would know exactly what the painting signifies.

Try the challenge and put your creative side to the test! See how the quote you choose will reflex your style of art through mix media. 

I leave you with a quote that may inspire you to be creative through falling in love with both literature and art:

"If you can say it in words, there would be no reason to paint." - Edward Hopper, an American Realist painter and printmaker, 1882-1967.

3/5/2015 by Veronica R. Add a Comment Share this:

Teen Review by Tara....The Clique

Publisher's Description: Massie Block: With her glossy brunette bob and laser-whitened smile, Massie is the uncontested ruler of The Clique and the rest of the social scene at Octavian Country Day School, an exclusive private girls' school in Westchester County, New York. Massie knows you'd give anything to be just like her.

Dylan Marvil: Massie's second in command who divides her time between sucking up to Massie and sucking down Atkins Diet shakes.

Alicia Rivera: As sneaky as she is beautiful, Alicia floats easily under adult radar because she seems so "sweet." Would love to take Massie's throne one day. Just might.

Kristen Gregory: She's smart, hardworking, and will insult you to tears faster than you can say "my haircut isn't ugly!"

Enter Claire Lyons, the new girls from Florida in Keds and two-year-old Gap overalls, who is clearly not Clique material. Unfortunately for her, Claire's family is staying in the guesthouse on Massie's family's huge estate while they look for a new home. Claire's future looks worse than a bad Prada knockoff. But with a little luck and a lot of scheming, Claire might just come up smelling like Chanel No. 19. . . .

The Clique is a drama filled book series. It really got to me because those things that they do in this book happens at school everyday. It's addictive once you get through the first chapter. It's about these 5 girls and they go to a school named Octavian Country Day, in short OCD. Their names are Massie Block, Alicia Rivera,Dylan Marvil, Kristen Gregory, and Claire Lyons. The fifth girl is a newcomer to the place and they make a group called the Pretty Committee and Claire wants to be in the group but Massie, aka the "the leader" wont let her but as the summary says "with a little luck and a lot of scheming" she just might get in. The problem is, getting out. 5 stars!

Other books you may be interested in:

3/1/2015 Add a Comment Share this: