Project Next Generation
It’s all about kids.
By offering a safe environment, creating multi-generational talent pools, integrating technology and advancing social values, Illinois libraries are bridging the traditional with the innovative to impact the next generation.
For the next generation, technology will be a necessary tool for communication of ideas as well as a skill vital for tomorrow’s jobs. Today’s 13-year-olds will work in jobs that don’t exist today. Providing them with a ‘technology toolkit’ to draw upon is of highest priority to ensure future success. Our communities, through their local public libraries, are in a unique position to provide for this need.
Using peer mentors and public libraries, Project Next Generation will capitalize on research which documents that peer associations augment social and mental development. Friendships will develop through peer mentoring and become keys to learning and social growth. With mentoring as the glue, technology as the process, and libraries as the resource, Project Next Generation will combine opportunities for skill and personal development.
What kids say about Project Next Generation
Has participating in Next Generation changed the way you feel about school?
- “I’m not as bored in school anymore.”
- “It is easier to do my homework now.”
- “My attitude about school has been better.”
- “I feel more advanced than other kids at school now.”
- “I actually want to work on my homework.”
- “I have learned that computers are more than just fun, they can help you a lot at school.”
- “Geography is not so complicated anymore.”
Has the Next Generation program helped you to improve your grades at school?
- “I went from a D to a B in both reading and science.”
- “I raised my science grade up from a failing grade.”
- “All of my grades have improved by two letter grades.”
- “My grades in social studies moved from a B to an A.”
- “All of my grades have gotten better.”
- “My grades have improved tremendously.”
What I liked:
- “I have a lot of fun here. I learn a lot about computers and many other things.”
- “I liked working with the digital camera because I could put the outside world into the computer and play with the pictures.”
- “I like the computers, I like the people that are here and the mentors are nice”
- “It was fun taking pictures of the emotions and working with the pictures in the computer.”
- “Getting to know the mentors was fun.”
What I’ve learned:
- “I have learned to get along with people.”
- “I’ve learned to use the digital cameras, the internet and PrintShop.”
- “I learned how to make web pages and how to print.”
- “I’ve learned that I have a good eye for graphics.”
- “I learned how to scan pictures and e-mail them.”
- “I learned how to find files, open them, and save them.”
Comments from Mentors:
- “We feel that we have come a long way in working together and have accomplished academically also.”
- “What I really liked about Next Generation was really being able to help the kids.”