Bringing tech literacy to the community: Coding Pirates and The Public Library

This blog post is written by Library Lab fellow Marianne Pedersen, librarian at Taarnby Public Libraries

Coding Pirates is a danish based code club run by volunteers who has a special interest in computers, code, IT-creativity and most of all – to teach children about these things.

For years the public libraries have been teaching especially the elderly part of the population how to use the computer, tablets or IT access to public and government systems, but haven’t been able the find that one thing where this ‘learning’ aspect could drag children to the library. And here we found it. Through games and curiosity both children and adults in Coding Pirates challenge IT, computer and systems.

2015-11-17 17.29.41Kids learn to be tech savvy members of the community at the library

Taarnby Library and Coding Pirates have been working together for a year and a half now; Up to 20 children, 9 volunteers and 3 librarians meet once every week for two hours to code games, play with Lego Mindstorms and Raspberry Pi or Arduinos. All with one purpose – to teach the children to be creative, question the devices and grow them to be tech savvy members of the community.

By working with volunteers and especially Coding Pirates has given us as a library more courage just to do things. In school vacations we now offer workshops on Lego Mindstorms, 3D printing/drawing and stop-motion video, because all children should have the option to learn and play with code and technic as we do in Coding Pirates.

Libraries in Denmark are one by one joining the amazing coding party and hopefully the movement and idea will spread to libraries and communities around the world. You get a lot of really involved people and children that you don’t usually meet at the library and the library supports much needed tech skills and understanding to society. Coding Pirates is an activity where we hopefully will give the children the ability to question the technique we surround us with everyday. It’s a way of learning children to be co-creators instead of just being consumers.

There are currently 28 Coding Pirates code clubs around in Denmark and it’s far from enough – more than 1000 children are on the waiting list right now. Danish librarians, sign up know. Librarians of the world, follow this example.

If you want to know more, please feel free to write

Get a book. Or learn how to code. It’s all happening at your library

2015-11-17 17.03.00Kids getting busy with Lego Mindstorms, Raspberry Pi and Ardunios at the library

‘Here is Johnny’ and other great bookfaces

Gentofte Public Library just outside Copenhagen, Denmark, are using a great little book promotion concept for there Instagram profile: Book covers fit in reality pictures – also called bookfaces

The idea is simply to take a book cover and make it fit to something by holding the book in front of it and then take a picture. Here are some of the best:

 Here is Johnny!

 Sailor down


 Hello Hansi!

 Dog woman star

 Hammer through!

 Just Bubber

 Allez Eddy!

 Food trouble




Read my knuckles! Librarians making statements the badass way

Tattoos is pretty common now a days. Knuckle tattoos is not and they have allways struck me as pretty badass. Librarians with knuckle tattoos take badass to the next level.

I was working late one evening and I meet one of our new library student employees, Morten, who studies Library and Information Science in Copenhagen. We chatted a bit and then I noticed his knuckles: “READ MORE” they spelled out when he put them together. Pretty badass way to make a solid statement so I’ve wanted to check out if there were more library-related knuckle tattoos around library town. It’s not like the internet is over-floating with it but I manage to find a few so without further ado: here is the Top-5 Badass Knuckle Tattooed Librarians (got some inked knuckles? send it to The Library Lab):

Number 5: GOOGLE ITBrooklyn-tattoo-artist-Je-011
The lazy librarians message to library user

Number 4: BOOK WORM
mckibbens bookworm
A library is not all about the books but still a lot of us is really down with them

Number 3: CAT LADY
Well, goes for at least half the profession…

Live it and be proud of it!

Number 1: READ MORE22652818772_2cf5c18049_oSay hi to Morten, my new student employee who got a well-meant message to everybody who enters the library desk

The Library Lab is hooked on knuckle tattoos and says see you at the ink shop