Virtual Teen Volunteering

 Teen volunteering opportunities will remain virtual for the 2020-2021 school year and 2021 summer.

Click on any of the opportunities below to learn more about each one. Click the school year (yellow) or summer (blue) buttons to apply.
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis (no deadline). SCLSNJ teen volunteer opportunities are open to teens who live, work, or attend school in one of our member municipalities. Click here for a list of our member municipalities.

School Year Volunteering

Prerequisite
All volunteer book reviewers must fill out a 2020-2021 School Year Teen Volunteer Application and register for a free Beanstack account (if you do not already have one). Teen Volunteer Coordinators will rely on Beanstack to review submissions and award volunteer hours.

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description

Read an appropriately challenging book, then write an original review based on the format below. Volunteers will post a completed review to Beanstack. Reviews should be written by the volunteer and will not earn credit if any portion of the review is plagiarized from another source. 

Review Format
Follow these guidelines when writing a book review. Submissions should run between five and nine sentences in length. These questions should act as a guide. 

  • What happens in the book? Provide a brief summary of the story. (no spoilers, please!) | 3-4 sentences
  • Did you like the book? Why or why not? What does the author do well? Where do they come up short? | 1-3 sentences
  • Would you recommend this book? Who might enjoy it? (for example: adrenaline junkies, sci-fi geeks, Harry Potter fans, etc.) | 1-2 sentences

Sample Review
In J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel “The Hobbit,” or “There and Back Again,” Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit who lives a quiet life, is asked by a wizard named Gandalf to go on a quest with 13 dwarves who want to reclaim their treasure stolen by a dragon named Smaug. As they journey, their quest is filled with many obstacles and deadly creatures. As the quest continues, Bilbo discovers a strange golden ring with special powers that may determine the fate of Middle Earth. I loved the book because it is so adventurous and Tolkien writes adventure scenes very well. For example, I never knew if Bilbo would ever escape the goblin tunnels. I would recommend “The Hobbit” for readers who like fantasy stories that have a variety of imaginary creatures like dragons, giant spiders, orcs, and more.

Training: Submission Tutorial

Time Earned
Volunteers will receive two hours of volunteer credit when their local branch’s Teen Volunteer Coordinator approves their review(s) on Beanstack. Volunteers can earn credit for up to one book review per week. 

Book reviews that have any part that is plagiarized will not be accepted. If plagiarized review is submitted, volunteer will be asked to rewrite the review if they want to receive credit. In addition, they will earn one of the consequences below:

  • First submission of a book review with plagiarism: Will receive a warning.
  • Second submission of a book review with plagiarism: Suspension from being a Book Reviewer for the remaining volunteer period (example: If during school year, for the rest of the school year). Volunteer can still do Make a Difference or QuaranTEEN Zine opportunities.

Prerequisite
Make a Difference Contributors must fill out a 2020-2021 School Year Teen Volunteer Application.

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description
Make a Difference volunteers do good deeds in their communities. They earn service hours on a monthly basis. Good deeds may include (but are not limited to):  letter writing, mask making, care packages, outdoor cleanup, and random acts of kindness. Volunteers may choose the task of the month, alternative option 1, or alternative option 2. They must choose one of the three tasks for the month, but should not combine. The teen volunteer coordinator will email the task options each month.

Schedule
Library staff will email volunteers at the beginning of the month with an assignment; volunteers have that month to complete the task. You are not required to do every assignment every month, but will only get hours for the ones you do.

Training
Training for specific assignments is available on an as-needed basis.

Time Earned
Each time a task is completed volunteers will earn up to one hour for their submission. Volunteers must submit evidence of completion (e.g. a photograph, signed note, etc.) on the digital time sheet. Service time is awarded to appropriately completed submissions by local branches’ Teen Volunteer Coordinators. Volunteers can submit up to four times a month.

Prerequisite
QuaranTEEN Zine Contributors must fill out a 2020-2021 School Year Teen Volunteer Application. 

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description
QuaranTEEN Zine Contributors put their artistic abilities to work by submitting content for inclusion in the SCLSNJ’s QuaranTEEN Zine. A zine is a small, noncommercial publication created by self-selecting groups with shared interests. It typically contains writing and artwork.

Contributors are welcome to work in all media to create engaging sculptures, paintings, graphics, prints, photographs, drawings, sculptures, collages, textiles, and more, but must send us a simple image file. Contributor writing can take the form of poetry, short stories, and/or flash fiction, but should not be longer than one page. Fanfiction is welcome, but please abstain from sending us nonfiction, essays, or opinion pieces. Written pieces can not exceed one page.

Schedule
The QuaranTEEN Zine will be updated every month, so volunteers must submit to the time sheet by 11:59 p.m. of the last day of the month in order to get credit for that month.

Training
Training is at the discretion of the library branch’s teen volunteer coordinators. 

Time Earned
Volunteers will receive one hour of volunteer credit per piece. Submissions are limited to four pieces per month, with photograph submissions limited to once per month. Volunteers must submit their contributions (e.g. photograph, document etc.) on the digital time sheet. Service time is awarded to appropriately completed submissions by local branches’ Teen Volunteer Coordinators.

Please name the file you are submitting with the following naming convention: Zine_Month Day_First Name Last Name (Example: Zine_April1_JaneSmith). If submitting a written file, it must be submitted as one of the two file types: Microsoft Word (.docx) or Open Document Format (.odt) (both are download options in Google Docs).

School Year Teen Volunteering
will end on May 28, 2021.

Click here for School Year Teen Volunteering Application

Summer Volunteering

Prerequisite
All volunteer book reviewers must fill out a 2021 Summer Teen Volunteer Application and register for a free Beanstack account (if you do not already have one). Teen Volunteer Coordinators will rely on Beanstack to review submissions and award volunteer hours.

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description

Read an appropriately challenging book, then write an original review based on the format below. Volunteers will post a completed review to Beanstack. Reviews should be written by the volunteer and will not earn credit if any portion of the review is plagiarized from another source.

Review Format

Follow these guidelines when writing a book review. Submissions should run between five and nine sentences in length. These questions should act as a guide. 

  • What happens in the book? Provide a brief summary of the story. (no spoilers, please!) | 3-4 sentences
  • Did you like the book? Why or why not? What does the author do well? Where do they come up short? | 1-3 sentences
  • Would you recommend this book? Who might enjoy it? (for example: adrenaline junkies, sci-fi geeks, Harry Potter fans, etc.) | 1-2 sentences

Sample Review

In J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel “The Hobbit,” or “There and Back Again,” Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit who lives a quiet life, is asked by a wizard named Gandalf to go on a quest with 13 dwarves who want to reclaim their treasure stolen by a dragon named Smaug. As they journey, their quest is filled with many obstacles and deadly creatures. As the quest continues, Bilbo discovers a strange golden ring with special powers that may determine the fate of Middle Earth. I loved the book because it is so adventurous and Tolkien writes adventure scenes very well. For example, I never knew if Bilbo would ever escape the goblin tunnels. I would recommend “The Hobbit” for readers who like fantasy stories that have a variety of imaginary creatures like dragons, giant spiders, orcs, and more.

Training: Submission Tutorial

  • Posting a Review to Beanstack: COMING SOON!

Time Earned

Volunteers will receive two hours of volunteer credit when their local branch’s Teen Volunteer Coordinator approves their review(s) on Beanstack. Volunteers must submit a timesheet for each review written in order to earn service credit. Volunteers can earn credit for up to one book review per week. 

Book reviews that have any part that is plagiarized will not be accepted. If plagiarized review is submitted, volunteer will be asked to rewrite the review if they want to receive credit. In addition, they will earn one of the consequences below:

  • First submission of a book review with plagiarism: Will receive a warning.
  • Second submission of a book review with plagiarism: Suspension from being a Book Reviewer for the remaining volunteer period (example: If during school year, for the rest of the school year). Volunteer can still participate in Make a Difference or QuaranTEEN Zine opportunities.

Prerequisite
Make a Difference Contributors must fill out a 2021 Summer Teen Volunteer Application.

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description
Make a Difference volunteers do good deeds in their communities. They earn service hours on a weekly basis. Good deeds may include (but are not limited to): letter writing, care packages, and outdoor cleanup. Volunteers may choose the task of the week or a previous week’s task. The teen volunteer coordinator will email the task options each week.

Schedule
Library staff will email volunteers at the beginning of the week with an assignment; volunteers have that week to complete the task. They are not required to do every assignment every week, but will only get hours for the ones they do.

Training
Training for specific assignments is available on an as-needed basis.

Time Earned
Each time a task is completed volunteers will earn up to one hour for their submission. Volunteers must submit evidence of completion (e.g. a photograph, signed note, etc.) on the digital time sheet. Service time is awarded to appropriately completed submissions by local branches’ Teen Volunteer Coordinators. Volunteers can submit up to once per a week.

Prerequisite
QuaranTEEN Zine Contributors must fill out a 2021 Summer Teen Volunteer Application.

Grade Requirements
Available for volunteers entering grades 6-12.

Description

QuaranTEEN Zine Contributors put their artistic abilities to work by submitting content for inclusion in the SCLSNJ’s QuaranTEEN Zine. A zine is a small, noncommercial publication created by self-selecting groups with shared interests. It typically contains writing and artwork. 

Contributors are welcome to work in all media to create engaging sculptures, paintings, graphics, prints, photographs, drawings, sculptures, collages, textiles, and more, but must send us a simple image file. Contributor’s writing can take the form of poetry, short stories, and/or flash fiction, but should not be longer than one page. Fanfiction is welcome, but please abstain from sending us nonfiction, essays, or opinion pieces. Written pieces can not exceed one page in 12 point font.

Schedule
Submissions for the QuaranTEEN Zine are due weekly, but the Zine itself will be published bi-weekly. Volunteers must submit to the time sheet by 11:59 p.m. the Thursday of each week in order to get credit for that week.

Training
Training is at the discretion of the library branch’s teen volunteer coordinators. 

Time Earned

Volunteers will receive one hour of volunteer credit per piece. Submissions are limited to one piece per week, with photograph submissions limited to once per month. Volunteers must submit their contributions (e.g. photograph, document etc.) on the digital time sheet. Service time is awarded to appropriately completed submissions by local branches’ Teen Volunteer Coordinators.

Please name the file you are submitting with the following naming convention: Zine_Month Day_First Name Last Name (Example: Zine_April1_JaneSmith).

Fiction, poetry or art that have any part that is plagiarized will not be accepted. If plagiarized zine contribution is submitted, volunteer will be asked to resubmit their art or writing if they want to receive credit. In addition, they will earn one of the consequences below:

First submission of a zine contribution with plagiarism: Will receive a warning. Second submission of a zine contribution with plagiarism: Suspension from being a QuaranTEEN Zine Contributor for the remaining volunteer period (example: If during school year, for the rest of the school year). Volunteer can still participate in Make a Difference or Book Reviewer opportunities. If submitting a written file, it must be submitted as one of the two file types: Microsoft Word (.docx) or Open Document Format (.odt) (both are download options in Google Docs).

Summer Teen Volunteering
will run from June 14-August 21, 2021.

Click here for Summer Teen Volunteering Application

If you have any questions, fill out this form (this is NOT the application) and a teen volunteer coordinator will email you back.