The Herald Bulletin

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Local News

August 7, 2011

Getting Together: Library teaches teens about foreign cultures

ANDERSON, Ind. — Local teenagers have been traveling around the world this summer at the Anderson Public Library.

Teen services librarian Staci Terrell created a program under the summer teen theme of “You Are Here” that allowed the young adults to sample foreign cultures.

“It’s been really good to see them learn about other cultures,” she said at a Teen Scene Culture Club meeting July 28. “They’ve all been eager to try the foreign food and I never have any left over.”

Each Thursday the teens have traveled to a different region by learning fun facts, sampling cuisine, playing regional games and creating crafts. Sixth- to 12th-graders were welcome to attend, and each meeting brought 12 to 20 participants.

Some of the teens came specifically to learn about other cultures, while others just enjoy hanging out at all the teen functions.

“I like cultural things,” said Rachel Fuller, 16.

“Staci first came to my school and told everyone about the teen programs and I’ve been coming here ever since,” said Jacqueline Reed, 12. “There are so many people here ... I get to make new friends and find out about different cultures.”

“I thought it would be cool to stay in my own town and visit other places at the same time,” said Marcus Deweese, 13, showing off his origami creation.

The culture that was chosen for the weekly meetings usually tied into the movie that was shown to the teens at the Tuesday night program. They watched “Mulan” on Tuesday and sampled Asian culture on Thursday.

“I have a teen advisory board that meets monthly and helps come up with ideas that the other kids will like,” said Terrell. “They also helped me pick which countries we visited. We will probably do this program again at some point because I’m already getting suggestions for countries we didn’t do.”

“All of my friends are here and I get to meet new people,” said Raven “Teddy” Bumbalough, 13. “And I just like to be at the library.”

“I came because it’s fun here,” said Laura Dahmer, 15. “I wouldn’t miss this much fun. So far my favorite place has been Africa because we played some awesome games.”

While the summer programs at the library are winding down, fall programs will offer opportunities for teens to spend some structured time among the books.

Getting Together features clubs, organizations and social groups from the area each Monday in The Herald Bulletin.

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