Quick question: How many of you have a public library card?
For those of you who don’t, here’s a great story that shows just how libraries are evolving; incorporating materials beyond just books, and creating learning opportunities for all types of literacies. Nintendo has partnered up with the San Francisco Public Library to present a special event at the end of March which will focus on digital literacy and game design using Super Mario Maker.
The event is scheduled for Wednesday March 30th from 3-7 PM (PST), and it’s going to be held at the Main branch of SFPL (100 Larkin St., San Francisco, CA 94102), and here’s what’s happening there:
Kids will be split into groups and given hands-on time with the game and shown the ins and outs of game level design. The kids will be encouraged to work together to design their own courses in the game – the more creative, the better!
Once they have completed their tasks, the plan is for participants to play through each others’ newly designed levels. As if that weren’t cool enough, Nintendo is also arranging for the ‘real’ Mario to stop in for a visit with the kids.
They Have Video Games at Libraries?
This event is taking place at the main branch of SFPL, in a space called The Mix. Makerspaces such as The Mix are becoming more popular throughout North America, with some other notable locations including the Maker Lab in Chicago and Edmonton Public Library’s Makerspace in Canada. They can contain resources such as video game stations, 3D printing, recording studios, digital editing tools, LEGO robotics, and tons of other cool resources. This type of resource is in addition to the recent and growing trend of video games becoming a core part of public library collections.
So, if you are in the San Francisco area and you’re able to attend, this promises to be a phenomenal opportunity for the children in your life (whether they be your child, cousin, nephew, niece, etc.) to learn about game design from experts in the field, and for you to connect with your local library. Here’s hoping the event is a big success, so perhaps Nintendo can expand their Super Mario Maker program to other library systems around North America and beyond.