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Digital Innovation at Malvern Library

March 2, 2017 | Teen Blogger | Comments (0)

Malvern DIH 1One of the most exciting developments at the Malvern Public Library this year is the opening of the Digital Innovation Hub, located within the SPOT at the library. The Digital Innovation Hub opens up a whole new world for teens by giving them access to an incredible variety of tech resources. It contains two 3D Printers, several Mac laptops and iMac computers, and even more PC computers. These computers are equipped with state-of-the-art software that allows young people to experiment with photo editing, movie making, and even DJ equipment! The Hub also contains Arduino and Raspberry Pi tools that are open for anyone's use! This is an incredible addition to the library and to the Malvern community at large, because it provides open, easy-to-access interaction with some of the newest and most dynamic digital technology.

However, all of this technology may seem intimidating to a beginner who doesn't know a computer mouse from a real one...Luckily, one of the main purposes of the Digital Innovation Hub is to provide education on the use of these tools and programs. A diverse range of classes are offered weekly at the Hub on a wide range of topics. These include beginner's photo editing, Introduction to iMovie, and many more to come! Not only can here classes be taken for personal interest, but they can also be used to make school projects and presentations look professionally made. The Hub also has open house days and meet ups such as the Arduino Meetup, for people who share a love of technology and digital innovation to drop in and share ideas, trade tips, and help each other out. Finally, one of its most exciting features is the 3D Printer Certification course it offers, which will help teens develop and entirely new skill.

Malvern DIH 2In short, the opening of the newly revamped Digital Innovation Hub is a fantastic opportunity for newcomers and more experienced lovers of technology! It's an amazing resource that should definitely be taken advantage of and explored, and is hopefully only the start of exciting new programs at the Malvern Public Library!

Review by Sakeina, Malvern Branch Youth Advisory Group member.

Your Bookmark Here: Bad Girls of Fashion: Style Rebels from Cleopatra to Lady Gaga

October 19, 2016 | Analisa | Comments (1)

Bad girls of fashion

“You live but once; you might as well be amusing.” - Coco Chanel

I must admit, I don’t read a lot of non-fiction books for fun but when I saw this book I was instantly drawn in. This book looks at different women from the past and present. It discusses the contributions of women in the fashion world and beyond that. I really enjoyed reading about each person’s bio. The book was also filled with cool photographs and illustrations. Each person in the book had challenged the status quo and social norms of their times. From scantily clad queens who rolled out of carpets to female artists who rode donkeys into school hallways and lit firecrackers during lectures. Some of the style rebels included women who wore banana skirts, swan dresses or sported stuffed animal sweaters! It also featured women who pioneered some of the styles commonly seen today such as pants, wearable clothing and tailored suits.    

The clothing part of the book was probably the “accessory” and main focus of the book was about the lives of the women that wore them. Overall, a great read about some of the about some of history’s most interesting style rebels and a great source for clothing and costume inspiration.


Further reading as suggested by the author


Your Bookmark Here: Messy Business of Art and Revenge

September 20, 2016 | Alice | Comments (0)

Original Fake, by Kirstin Cronn-Mills and E. Eero Johnson

ORIGINAL-FAKE A closet artist in a family full of sparkly stage presences, Frankie has come to hate his sister just as much as he worships street art hero Uncle Epic, his town's answer to Banksy.Things collide when he gets perfect blackmail material on his sister, and knows just how he wants to express it...

Continue reading "Your Bookmark Here: Messy Business of Art and Revenge" »

Contest Winner: Creative Places

September 14, 2016 | Monica | Comments (0)

I want to start off by thanking everyone for the amazing submissions, and for taking the time to enter. 

From this wonderful drawing by A.C., depicting herself looking out over the city:

Creative Contest- A.C










To this amazing shot of the city by Aloysius:

Creative Contest- Aloysius W











And of course, this beautiful painting by Grace:

Creative Contest- Grace T








With such amazing submissions, it was not easy to choose just one, and it was a very close call. But in the end, the winner is this very creative video submitted by Anita, who finds inspiration everywhere. Congratulations Anita!!

  Creative Contest- Anita P.

We hope you've had a great summer, and a great first few weeks back at school.  

Also, we'd love to hear your thoughts on this summer's program, so please take a moment to fill out this short survey for us. Thank you!

Contest Winner: #Bookface

September 10, 2016 | Alice | Comments (1)

We had some fun entries for this contest, which asked you to use a book cover to change your identity. (You can see more details here). Let's start with a few of my favourites, before I announce the big winner.

This one from Angela is a fun little play on gender performance:

Angela bookface 1

Continue reading "Contest Winner: #Bookface" »

Creative Places Contest (August 22 – September 2)

August 22, 2016 | Monica | Comments (18)

Where in Toronto do you feel most creative? Is there a spot where you feel inspired to draw and paint and build and make plans for even more drawings, paintings and designs?

To enter this contest for a chance to win a pair of B&O Beoplay H6 Headphones, use any form of visual art to depict the place in Toronto where you feel most creative. You can express yourself using photography, drawing, comics, ceramic, sculpture or other forms of visual art. Add an image of your creation to the comments section using any picture file format.

  1. You have to live, work or go to school in Toronto to win this contest.
  2. You have to provide a valid e-mail address so we can contact you if you win. (See privacy statement below for more information.)
  3. One entry per person for the Creative Places Contest.
  4. Only original art work will be accepted.
  5. Your entry must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on September 2 to be considered to win.
  6. Winners will be announced during the week of September 5th.

For a more detailed set of rules for Toronto Public Library contests, see our Rules for Online Contest page.

Toronto Public Library is committed to the protection of your privacy and will never sell, rent, trade, or disclose your personal information, including your email address, to a third party without your consent or where not explicitly authorized by the Municipal Freedom of Information & Protection of Privacy Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.M.56.


The Before I Die Project

August 8, 2016 | YAG Facilitator | Comments (0)

Before-I-Die-book-coverby The Northern District branch Youth Advisory Group

Have you heard of the Before I Die project? 

It is a project initiated by artist Candy Chang in New Orleans in the period after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city, a project that sought to get people thinking about their hopes and dreams for the future. This project was a huge success and went viral, spawning walls in cities all around the world. 

Our YAG decided as a group to do this project this year for our summer project. We've installed a wall of black paper panels stenciled with lines like the original, and put up signs letting the community know that this was an interactive installation, and that we hoped they would add their own dreams and bucket list items, and take a look at what others are wishing for. We started with this: 

Continue reading "The Before I Die Project" »

What's On @ the Library - August 8-13th

August 8, 2016 | Monica | Comments (0)

Check out all the cool things happening at the Toronto Public Library this week, from the art of filmmaking to designing your very own video game!

Continue reading "What's On @ the Library - August 8-13th " »

drawing tutorial

August 3, 2016 | Youth Advisory Group | Comments (0)

 Child_drawingOlivia, from Northern District's YAG, is here to teach you something about drawing. Take it away, Olivia!

 Learn how to draw in just 2 steps

Just follow these simple instructions...

Continue reading "drawing tutorial" »

What's On @ the Library : August 1 - 7

August 1, 2016 | Christine | Comments (0)

Happy Simcoe Day, everyone! I hope you are all enjoying your August long weekend, and doing lots of fun stuff with your friends. Speaking of fun, here is a list of some more great programs happening at the Toronto Public Library this week:

  1. Comics Jam!
    Tuesday August 2 and Wednesday August 3, 1:00 pm - 3:00pm

    at the Lillian H. Smith Branch
    Can't stop drawing? Join us for a two day comics jam! Sign up for Tuesday or Wednesday and unleash your fury of creativity on paper. With comic artist Rebecca Roher from the Centre for Cartoon Studies. For ages 13 - 20. Register in branch or by calling 416-393-7746

  2. Teen DJ Workshop with Scratch Lab
    Tuesday August 2, 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
    at the Malvern Branch
    Join Scratch Lab for a workshop that examines basic DJ Techniques as well as the evolution of mp3 software in the DJing world. The workshop will consist of a 2 hour info session where everyone will learn the basics of how to mix, match and scratch records, just like the pro DJs. Come out and join the fun and "Get Schooled" with Scratch Lab. Ages 13 - 19. Registration required, please call 416-396-8969 or visit Malvern Branch for details.

  3. Garden Club
    Tuesday August 2, 5:00 pm - 5:30 pm at the S. Walter Stewart Branch
    Get your hands dirty and join the S. Walter Stewart Youth Advisory Group as they plant, grow, and maintain the Library's Flower Garden. Drop-in. Teens 13 - 18. Meet outside the S. Walter Stewart Auditorium to collect tools and plants. For more information contact the branch at 416-396-3975.

  4. Teen Gaming Tournament
    Wednesday August 3, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
    at the Evelyn Gregory Branch
    Whether you're an experienced gamer or just looking to learn a few new tricks, our Teen Gaming Tournaments are sure to be a blast. Drop in to the library and challenge your friends to a game of Mortal Kombat or NBA2K. Maybe you'll even end up on our Gaming Wall of Fame. Prizes for the winners.

  5. Kerbal Space Program
    Thursday August 04 - Tuesday Aug 09, 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
    at the Fort York Branch
    Start your own space program and reach to the stars! Kerbal Space Program is an award winning game that teaches players real-world physics and engineering skills as they attempt to explore the Kerbal solar system. This multi day program will start out with a tutorial, and then attempt a mission to the moon or even another planet.
    For more information:
    For tweens and teens aged 11-16 yrs. Registration begins on July 25th. Register in the branch, or by phone at 416-393-6240.

  6. Improv Workshop
    Thursday August 4, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
    at the Barbara Frum Branch
    Building Story Through Improv!
    Learn the basic techniques of improvisation with a Young People's Theatre Artist Educator. The session includes ensemble-based exercises focusing on the creation and development or new characters and original stories. Space is limited. Please register in branch or by calling 416-395-5441.

  7. Fabric Paper
    Thursday August 4, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm at the Don Mills Branch
    Create your own fabric paper in a few simple steps. Demonstration and materials will be provided. For ages 12 - 19. Space is limited. Please register in person or by phone at 416-395-5710.

  8. Silver Maple Art Club
    Thursday August 4, 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm at the York Woods Branch

    Express yourself and learn visual arts techniques in the Silver Maple Arts Club. Explore and experiment with a wide variety of artistic materials while creating art true to you. Drop-In program

  9. Graffiti Art Drop In
    Thursday August 4, 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm at the Parkdale Branch
    In this workshop series, participants will be introduced to the world of graffiti art. Learn from a UNITY artist about letter structure, style and composition. Participants will be give step-by-step instructions on how to create their own unique graffiti pieces of art. This eight week drop-in program will lead up to the creation of a final mural project. Come to as many sessions as you can -- attend one, or attend them all. Ages 12 - 19

  10. Anime Screening -- Kiznaiver
    Friday August 5, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm at the Jane/Dundas Branch
    Bring your friends and enjoy a selection of anime straight from Japan. Please note: anime will be subtitled in English but spoken in Japanese. Anime shown will be for ages 12 and up.

Hope to see you all there!

Whats On @ the library July 25th - 31st

July 25, 2016 | Cameron | Comments (0)

Events_programsWant to know what is going on at the Toronto Public Library for teens this week: Check out the listing of programs below that cover programs and events from July 25th to July 31st.


Continue reading "Whats On @ the library July 25th - 31st " »

The Beauty of a Spray Can

July 23, 2016 | Youth Advisory Group | Comments (0)

By Alma at Parliament Street Branch

Although Toronto is well known for its huge diversity in population, the growing increase in the awesomeness of the arts ( like dance and music) has drawn many fans into our city. But one thing that is kept so low key is our wall art.

Whether it be graffiti or murals, artists who work with spray cans have an incredible sense of magic and make the walls of our city look colourful. Still not sure on what I'm taking about?

I've attached pictures of my favourite places to find beautiful wall art and graffiti in Toronto.

*Please note: pictures used in this post are my own, and please give credit to me if you ever use them :)*

Queen Street

  • This very long street consists of various places and neighbourhoods with wall art and graffiti, here is one example:
  • Graffiti Alley - one of the most known in the Toronto wall art world, this alley is 6 blocks long with various tags and murals. One of their cutest and admirable? This rainbow aquarium with fish all over.


photo of graffiti on Queen Street depicting colourful fish
image used with permission from blog author


  • This amazing neighbourhood has murals and graffiti almost everywhere. If you're on the Queen Street part of the neighbourhood, look behind the library and along the sides of stores, and you're bound to find something! Parkdale graffiti normally consists of words you can actually read instead of tags. There are murals with phrases such as "Welcome to Parkdale" or even ones that say "Born Again". 
photo of graffiti depicting the phrase fear a bit less and live a bit more
image used with permission from blog author


image of graffiti tags in Parkdale
image used with permission of blog author

Kensington Market

  • Between College and Dundas Street, Kensington Market also borders in between Spadina and Bathurst. In the little alleyways between stores there is plenty of graffiti and mural art that you can find. So if you're ever at Kensington, look out for the different wall art situated in mini alleyways!
photo of girl passing graffiti in Kensington Market
image used with permission from blog author


image of a pink and blue graffiti tag in Kensington Market
image used with permission of blog author


King Street between Sackville & Sumach

  • This little bridge thing on King Street between Sackville and Sumach Street is one of the most unique places for wall art. As cars zoom by on King Street, there are these triangular-type pillars with amazing wall art on them. If you like vibrant colours, unusual shapes, and happen to walk along King & Sackville or King & Sumach Street, try to look out for these pillars of colour. 
photo of a girl looking at at King Street graffiti
image used with permission from blog author


image of mural on King St depicting buildings, ships, and faces
image used with permission from blog author

Look between allies- graffiti is now everywhere! Many artists are now paid to do awesome art everywhere around Toronto. So as you walk through places in your neighbourhood or places you're visiting, keep an eye out for the markings of colourful spray cans. Want to know other cool places with Graffiti? Regent Park is a great example!

People take pictures with graffiti to show off their #OOTDs, or even just for simply admiring the art. Drop in graffiti classes happen every Thursday at the Parkdale Branch from 6-8 PM, so if you have any more interests, come on by! 

 For materials about street art, check out the TPL catalogue.


Happening This Week: July 18-24

July 17, 2016 | Alice | Comments (0)

Dance. Draw. Act. Beatbox. Learn. 

We have a lot going on this week! 

SharpiesTwo weeks of hip hop dance with Scarborough dance crew Bucc N Flvr kick off this week at Maria A. Shchuka branch July 19. 

Michael Brown uncaps some sharpies for an art programme at Don Mills on July 19.

Top Ten author Ryan North teaches you a bit about comic creation at Centennial this week on July 19.

Can you make a play in one day? Young People's Theatre is leading a workshop on Collective Creation on July 20 at Lillian H. Smith.

If you've ever wanted to see what's behind the scenes in the reference library's gallery and amazing special collections, this week we have your chance to find out! Join us for a special insider's look on July 20.

MicAlways wanted to beatbox or learn the art of graffiti? You can still join in our summer-long series with Unity!  

Beatboxing happens on Saturdays at Parliament branch until August 27 - you can come for one or all of the sessions.

Thursday nights are alright for graffiti at Parkdale branch all summer until August 25. See you there maybe? 

Happening This Week: July 11 - 16

July 10, 2016 | stephen | Comments (0)

New programs and Summer Edition Tech Week! 

Logics academySeveral branches are hosting Logics Academy this week for an hour long introduction to robotics. Come in and learn how to code and program your robot to participate in our Robot Dance Battle

Steeles: July 11 2-3pm

Cedarbrae: July 12 2-3pm

Pape/Danforth: July 13 4-5pm


Continue reading "Happening This Week: July 11 - 16" »

song dong at the AGO

July 5, 2016 | Youth Advisory Group | Comments (0)

Artwork by Editorial Youth Advisory Group member Wenting Li


The AGO (art gallery of ontario) is free wednesday evenings 6-9 pm & free after 3 pm (tuesday - friday) with a valid ontario high school ID. communal courtyard (song dong) is on display until july 17.

Check out more of Wenting's artwork on the cover of Young Voices 2013! 


Happening This Week: July 4-10

July 3, 2016 | Alice | Comments (0)

We're kicking off July with some awesome programs this week! 

Hiphop baby - pixabay Brentwood is hosting ScratchLab for a two-hour workshop on DJ skills this Thursday afternoon. Drop by to pick up some basics on mixing, beatmatching, and scratching to get you started. 

And two of our biggest programs are launching for an eight-week run! 

Unity is bringing beatboxing to Parliament branch every Saturday from 2-4, from July 9th to August 27th.

If art is more your thing, we have an eight-week graffiti arts program with Unity starting at our Parkdale branch

For the entire summer worth of what's going on, take a look at our events page.

What's on at the Library -- June 27 - July 3

June 30, 2016 | Christine | Comments (0)

Hi everyone!

Happy early Canada Day! I hope you're all enjoying your summer vacations so far. :)

Here are some more great programs for youth that you can take advantage of this summer at your local branch of the Toronto Public Library this coming long weekend:

  1. 3D Printer Certification -- Thursday June 30, various times
    (please click on branch names for details)
    St. James Town, Scarborough Civic Centre, & North York Central Library
    Staff members show participants how to use the 3D printers available at Toronto Public Library Digital Innovation Hubs. Class instruction includes:
    * How to prepare a 3D design file for print
    * How to use the equipment properly and safely
    * A review of the rules and guidelines for using the 3D printer

  2. Pride Creative Writing Workshop with YA Author Robin Stevenson
    Thursday June 30, 5 - 7:45pm

    Lillian H. Smith, ROOM B/C - Lower Level
    Flannery O'Connor once said that anybody who had survived childhood had enough material to write for the rest of his or her life. Our own life experiences can be powerful jumping off places for crafting fiction - in fact, many novels have their beginnings in specific events in the author's own life. In this hands-on workshop, we'll explore how we can use our own memories, experience, questions and curiosity to create convincing characters and compelling stories. Drop-in, no registration required, TEEN and YOUNG ADULT program! Ages 13-29

  3. Call of Gamerz: Teen Video Game Nights-- Thursday June 30, 6:15 - 7:45 pm
    Join Malvern's Youth Advisory Group for a night of fun and video games including games for Wii, PS3 and XBox 360. No registration required, just drop in and get your game on!

  4. Adults' Chess Club -- Saturday July 2, 1 - 2:30pm
    Play casual chess for ages 13 years and up.

  5. Storygami -- Saturday July 2, 2 - 4pm
    Lillian H. Smith
    Join us for origami, featuring new & wild folds each session. No experience is necessary to participate and have fun. We partner with the UofT Origami Club F.O.L.D. - Fly with Origami, Learn to Dream. This drop-in program takes place every first Saturday of the month.

  6. Saturday Movie & Popcorn -- Saturday July 2, 2-3pm
    Highland Creek
    Come and join us on Saturday afternoons. The movies are great for the whole family and the popcorn is free.

  7. Keep Calm & Colour On -- Saturday July 2, 2 - 3:30pm
    Colour your cares away while you enjoy the latest craze of adult colouring. Materials will be provided, or bring your own. No registration required!

  8. My Home Is... Spoken Word/Poetry Workshop -- Saturday July 2, 1 - 4pm
    Dawes Road Meeting Room
    Join Slam Coach Cathy Petch for a guided freewrite on themes of home, place and transition. Be brave, be bold, be you. For adults and youth. In association with East End Arts. Contact the branch for details.

Hope to see you all there!

Here's to hoping your creative ideas will hatch!

June 27, 2016 | Youth Advisory Group | Comments (0)


Continue reading "Here's to hoping your creative ideas will hatch! " »

YAG Gallery: Drawings by Rana

June 25, 2016 | Alice | Comments (0)

Rana dwg cupWe're rounding up our YAG art this week with a few drawings from Rana. 

This cup was an exercise piece - follow the jump for some faces! 







Continue reading "YAG Gallery: Drawings by Rana" »

YAG Gallery: Painting by Olivia

June 24, 2016 | Alice | Comments (1)

 Northern District YAG member Olivia is our artist of the day, and shares this painting

  Olivia painting

Youth Gallery: Paintings

June 21, 2016 | Alice | Comments (0)

Northern District's YAG is running the blog this week, and a few of our talented teens wanted to share some art with you all! 

We're kicking off the week with a few paintings by Rana. Follow the jump to see all of them! 

These Orchids were painted at Allen Gardens:

Orchids painting by Rana

Continue reading "Youth Gallery: Paintings" »

What's On at the Library- June 20-25th

June 20, 2016 | Monica | Comments (0)

Hi All! Looking for some fun and exciting things to do this summer? Keep any eye on the TPL Teens Summer Edition page all summer long, as we got you covered on the events taking place at the Toronto Pubic Library for Youth.

To kick things off, take a look at What's On at the Library from June 20-25th

  1. You Belong @ Your Library- LGBTQ+ & Allies Youth Group at the Fairview Branch

    Have you always wanted to be an ambassador for equality and empowerment in your community? Come join us to celebrate the unique and diverse LGBTQ+ youth of our community. In this WEEKLY youth alliance we will engage, lead and impact in inspiring ways in our library. Get involved and let's make a difference! Spaces is limited! Contact Sepideh Mckensy ( at Fairview Branch (416-395-5743) or drop in to reserve your spot.

  2. Teen Open House at the Pape/Danforth Branch

    Come and join our teen volunteers for two hours. You will enjoy the following:

    -Learn upcoming teen programs in the summer
    -Talk with teen volunteers about Youth Advisory Group
    -Know summer job opportunities in the city
    -Participate in teen summer reading branch display
    -Play board games

    Snacks are available.

  3. Duct Tape Crafts at the Cedarbrae Branch

    Use imagination and creativity to make a variety of crafts with duct tape. Free materials and instructions provided. Ages 11 to 19 years. To register, call 416-396-8850 or register in person at the branch.

Hope to see you all there!

LGBTQ2S+ Youth Art Show & Sale

May 17, 2016 | Ray | Comments (2)

Tomorrow! Wednesday!  Live performances of poetry and singing!


Celebrate creativity and expression! 21a5170d4461f2d440fe0aed3871cc35

Art exhibition of drawings, sculpture, paintings and poetry by LGBTQ2S+ youth. Works will be available for purchase. 

Youth art exhibition is a collaboration between Full Circle Art Therapy and Egale Youth Outreach Drop-In for LGBTQ2S+ youth with support from Toronto Public Library.

Check out the event listing

Lillian H. Smith Branch 

Wed May 18, 2016

5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Room B/C

Finallogo    OutReach_4C-300x240.jpg.pagespeed.ce.pQkq5cD-pg

Make the Cutest Sock Monkey on Saturday

April 26, 2016 | Ray | Comments (0)


Learn step-by-step how to make the cutest darn sock monkey!  Operation Sock Monkey will be coming to Lillian H. Smith Branch (239 College at Spadina)  to show teens and young adults how.

Crafted sock monkeys will be donated to kids in need, but if you fall in love with it, you may purchase it for a small fee. ($10)

Crafting is happening in the Teen Zone - second floor.  1:00pm - 3:30pm


Drop on by!  Bring a pal.   More Event Details


Imagine 15,000 copies of Young Voices magazine - with your story in it!

March 25, 2016 | Ken Sparling | Comments (0)

Why not go for it! We circulate nearly 15,000 copies of Young Voices every year!

Submit your story, photo, comic, artwork, poem, rant...

Here's some work from Toronto teens who were published in Young Voices last year to get you inspired.

Hypnotized_Rabaya Khan_age 15
Hypnotized, by Rabaya Khan, in Young Voices 2015

by Sivan Piatigorsky-Roth, age 15
-from Young Voices 2015

If all the world and night were blue
With twinkling stars, long overdue
Their deaths, like broken shards of glass
In gold, in silver, and in brass would
Cast their dusty fragments free
To fall on earth, the land, the sea.
I cannot sleep
For in your eyes
I find the stars take new disguise
And falling bits of dust and space
Find themselves a holy place
Wherein they dance, and airy light
They find a purpose in the night.
I won’t rest
I know it wrong
To play a melancholy song
In hopes that I might catch a glance
Of starlight in the window’s glass
And on your shining, gentle face,
If you appeared in such a place,
I’d see the lofty, cloudless skies
And find the stars wrote in your eyes.

Don't delay! Submit today! The deadline for Young Voices 2016 is April 5, 2016.

Youth Survey. My Curved Border

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