I have to admit, a part of me secretly wants to be a teen librarian – mostly because I really enjoy planning programs. This past week, my Youth Librarian and I collaborated on an “Anti-Valentines Day” party for teens. She came up with the idea, and I said “Let’s do it!” My thoughts being, there’s plenty of opportunity for those who celebrate love and all that gooey stuff this month, but what about those teens who are focused on other things?
The first activity that came to my mind was candy sweethearts – or, for our party, “not so sweethearts.” I baked about two dozen sugar cookies and planned to make frosting from powdered sugar, milk and food coloring. (Then I discovered premade cookie decorating packs with frosting from WalMart, which I grabbed just in case I didn’t have enough of my homemade cookies.) We laid these out and told teens they could decorate their own hearts with messages like “Go away” or “Bite Me” (and asked them to avoid vulgarities, of course).
Most of the teens who talked about the program beforehand were looking forward to the next activity, making their own voodoo dolls. We have a ton of felt and stuffing (left over from previous programs dating back who knows how far), I bought a simple sewing kit, and I printed a pattern. We dug out some buttons and other embellishments from the craft cupboard too. I thought it might be above some of the teens’ skill levels, but those who tried it had no trouble at all.
Finally, the activity I had the most fun planning and preparing for was Mad Libs Lyrics. On the promotional poster, we said teens would get the chance to write their own Taylor Swift break up songs. I pulled a few Taylor Swift lyrics, and a couple of Miley Cyrus lyrics (by request) and turned them into Mad Libs!
The biggest draw, though, was the snacks! We kept it simple – popcorn, cookies, soda and chocolate. Lots of chocolate. One teen, though, asked, “Is this dark chocolate? Why did you get dark chocolate?!” to which my response was, “Because it was wrapped in purple, and it’s dark and moody. This IS an ‘Anti-Valentines’ party you know!” We only had seven teens in attendance, but they all enjoyed themselves, which is the most important part. Oh, and the local paper did a write up on it too!