Virtual Teen Volunteering Opportunities

Virtual Teen Volunteering applications are open. 

Click here to apply.

A volunteer may submit and be recognized for up to 1 review per week. Reviews are approved seasonally, and a certificate for the previous season may be requested on the following dates. 

  • Spring (April 1- June 30): Certificate Request July 8
  • Summer (July 1- September 30): Certificate Request October 8
  • Fall (October 1 – December 31) Certificate Request January 8
  • Winter (January 1 – March 31) Certificate Request April 8
 
Reviews submitted during March 2024 will be counted as part of Spring, and may be requested on July 8. 
 
You may submit no more than 1 review per week. Weeks start on Monday and end on Sunday.

Volunteer credit is calculated at the end of each season. 1 hour of time is awarded for each approved review. Remember to take submissions seriously: incomplete or insufficient reviews will not be approved.

A volunteer may request a certificate for any season, or for more than one season, as long as the certificate request date has arrived or past. Certificates are delivered via email in PDF format.

Volunteer Opportunity: Book Reviewer

Book reviews are an excellent way to not only share your thoughts on books you’ve read, but also to develop and practice your comprehension, writing, language, and critical thinking skills. A book review is not a book report (which rehashes the book’s contents), but a short, original, critical discussion of the book focusing on what the reader’s experience with the book was, and who (or who not) the reviewer would recommend the book to.

Reviews submitted for this volunteer opportunity will be considered for publication in the library’s online catalog and other digital spaces, and may be printed for use in the physical library branches or as a readers advisory tool in a display, bookmark, or other in-person use.

You may submit 1 book review each week. Book reviews should be on books that you have read and enjoyed. Volunteers will be awarded 1 hour for each accepted review.
Be sure that reviews are entirely your own original work, and lacking in spelling, grammar, or formatting mistakes.

Requirement and Guidelines

The following rules are strictly enforced in order to ensure that all volunteers are being recognized for their good work appropriately and that all volunteering is in-line with SCLSNJ policies and procedures.

All volunteer book reviewers must fill out a SCLSNJ Virtual School Year Teen Volunteer Application and be approved by the SCLSNJ Volunteer Office before submitting reviews.

All reviews must be submitted to the SCLSNJ Virtual Teen Volunteer Timesheet. The link to this timesheet is sent to all approved volunteer applicants.

Reviewers will be required to provide the following:

Bibliographic Information:

  • Title
  • Series – Series Name and Book’s number in series.
  • Author
  • Publisher
  • Year published
  • Genre/Subgenre/Format:
  • Genre include: mystery, sci-fi, historical fiction, romance, etc.
  • Subgenre include: Supernatural Romance, Golden Age Sci-Fi, etc.
  • Format: how-to, biography, epistolary, graphic novel, etc.
  • A book can be more than one genre, subgenre or format!

Book Review Content:

Plot Summary (250 Character Limit)

What happens in the book? Provide a brief, spoiler free summary.

Stick to the Who, What, When, Where, How, Why the author uses to set up the story!

Thoughts, Praise, and Criticism (250 Character Limit)

Help someone reading your review decide if it’s a good book for them.
  • Consider the following ideas to inspire yourself.
  • What does the author do well? What did you enjoy about reading the book?
  • What could have been better? What took you out of enjoying the book?
  • What was something interesting or notable about the book that made you think?
  • How did the book make you feel as you read it? What was the author trying to make you feel, if those feelings didn’t match?
  • Other interesting thoughts related to the book that make for a cohesive review.

Recommendation (250 Character Limit)

Who do you recommend this book to? Who might enjoy it? Be specific: what in this book will connect with your recommended audience?

In addition to the usual fans, try to think of one group who might like this book if someone recommended it to them, but who might not pick it up otherwise.

Volunteers must submit content that contains only their own original work. Submitting work that is not your own original work is called plagiarism.

Plagiarism includes:

  • Copy and pasting the exact words of other writers
  • Rewording the writing of other writers and representing it as your original work.
  • Submitting work written by friends or family as your own.
  • Using a chatbot, AI, or other content generation technology.

Plagiarism of any kind will result in loss of volunteer credit for all reviews and a permanent ban from submitting virtual volunteer content.

That said: writing a review is not like submitting an assignment for school. Reviews are not a test, and the Library wants your review to be the best it can be. We want to hear YOUR voice in the review. While we ask that all reviews submitted be your best work that meet our requirements for content and formatting, we assume all reviews are working drafts, and will work with reviewers to make the most polished final product we can together.

* Updated 3/11/2024

If you have any questions, please email us at volunteer@sclibnj.org or call the Civic Services team at (908) 458-4938