Alyssa Chermak and Rudi Brockfeld share their recent experiences with Library Juice Academy, an online professional development platform offering courses on a wide array of library-related skills.
Mindfulness for Reduced Stress (Alyssa Chermak)
Do you ever feel like “mindfulness” is a buzzword these days? In practicing mindfulness, we can cultivate empathy for coworkers and patrons. We can practice being present in the moment with non-judgment, allowing us to be calm during stressful work situations.
Throughout the four weeks of Katie Scherrer’s course, Mindfulness for Reduced Stress, we explored concepts such as the science supporting mindfulness practice, approaches of mindfulness, and its use concerning libraries. We read articles, viewed short clips, engaged in discussions and practiced guided mindfulness.
Although the course presents from a library lens, the knowledge and practice carry over into personal life as well. Do you desire a practical way to reduce stress or explore what “mindfulness” is? Well, you may benefit from this course!
Informal Learning in the Academic Library (Rudi Brockfeld)
I recently completed a Library Juice course entitled Informal learning in the Academic Library. I learned many things about the topic; the first being that there isn’t a clean, mutually agreed-on definition of informal learning. A commonly accepted definition is the learning by individuals without formal educational goals (i.e. outside of a curriculum). To me, a helpful distinction is that informal learning occurs in three forms: self-directed, incidental, and socialization.
Academic libraries are centers of informal learning on campus by providing work/study spaces and informal learning resources. Many libraries have recognized this aspect of their use and done work to improve and supplement informal learning resources.
By facilitating access to otherwise unavailable resources to patrons around the state, Minitex plays a background yet substantial role in informal learning. But informal learning happens within the Minitex office, too. The Sun Room’s resources (large whiteboard, open tables and booths, etc..), several puzzle tables, and coloring pages are examples of informal learning resources open to Minitex staff and student workers (normally-speaking, of course).