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Collecting and Analyzing Data

Abstract

Throughout the spring semester, the author will be doing a case study analysis of the Kingsport Public Library and focusing on their Time for Two’s storytime for two-year-olds. The results will be published via web in seven parts: the public library context, identification of the public library users, service to assess/evaluate, case study analysis, developing an evaluation action plan, collecting and analyzing data, and user centered assessment/evaluation in public library services. For the last assignment, the author examined the results of a voluntary survey in relation to the Time for Two’s survey for the purpose of user-centered assessment.

Summarize and report findings (question-by-question) based on data gathered while conducting user-centered assessment/evaluation about your selected PL service. If applicable, provide transcription of data collected as an appendix. (Provide other forms of data collected).

Question One: This survey is being conducted by a student at the University of Tennessee as part of an assignment. However, the information gathered will be provided to the Kingsport Public Library. The survey, and each question in it, is voluntary and anonymous. However, the results will be shared with the Kingsport Public Library to evaluate Time for Two's storytime.

Question Two: Please rate your satisfaction of the Time for Two’s storytime on a scale of 1-10 where 1 is not satisfied at all and 10 is completely satisfied.

Of a total of 16 responses, 1 respondent rated overall satisfaction at a 9, and the other 15 respondents rated overall satisfaction a 10.

Question Three: Would you like for Time for Two’s to be offered more than once a week? Please note that if Time for Two’s was offered more than once a week, the program at both storytimes that week would be the same.

Of a total of 16 responses, 8 respondents said no, 6 respondents said yes, and 1 respondent choose neither answer with a comment that she would change her schedule to come to storytime.

Question Four: Would you like to have take-home sheets of the lyrics to the songs performed in storytime or any of the rhymes?

Of a total of 16 responses, 10 respondents said no and 6 said yes.

Question Five: Which would you like to see more of in Storytime (please check all that apply). Options to check: Crafts, Songs, Puppets, Flannelboards, Interactive Play, and Other (Please Specify).

Of a total of 16 respondents, 8 responses want puppets, 6 want interactive play, 4 wants songs, 1 wants flannel boards, and 1 wants crafts. There was nothing added in for Other.

Question 6: Is there a different day in the week that would be more convenient for you for storytime?

Of a total of 16 respondents, 15 said no, and 1 said yes.

Question 7: Would you (or anyone you know) be interested in a storytime for children younger than two?

Of a total of 16 respondents, 11 said no and 5 said yes.

Question 8: If you already attend storytime, please indicate your relation to the child you bring. Options: Parent, Grandparent, Great grandparent, Aunt, Uncle, Cousin, Nanny/Babysitter, Sibling, Other (Please Specify).

Of a total of 16 respondents, 10 said parents, 3 said great grandparent, 0 said great grandparent, 2 said aunt, 0 said uncle, 0 said cousin, 4 said nanny/babysitter, 0 said aibling, and 0 said other.

Question 9: Please indicate your age and gender. Please check all that apply. Options: Male, Female, Under 20, 21-25, 26-30, 31-35, 36-40, 41-50, 51-60, 60+, Prefer Not to Answer.

Of a total of 16 respondents, 13 said male, 1 said female, and 2 did not indicate gender. The one male was between the age of 26-30. Of the remaining 15 females, 0 were under 20, 3 were 21-25, 3 were 26-30, 3 were 31-35, 2 were 36-40, 2 were 41-50, 1 was 51-60, and 1 was 60+.

Question 10: Feel free to leave any comments on any aspect of storytime in the box below. Thank you for your time! Feel free to leave any comments on any aspect of storytime in the box below. Thank you for your time!

This was the only open ended question and 12 of 16 respondents left comments which are as follows:

1.EVERYTHING IS WONDERFUL!!! everyone is so welcoming and its a friendly environment that I enjoy bringing my daughter to!! She loves it and I plan on and look forward to bringing her to the next age group too!! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL THAT YOU DO!!!.

2.I attend both the preschool and sometimes the time for twos and I enjoy them both. My children are 2 and 4 and both talk about story time all week and love it. We appreciate having something that is very involved and planned out. Also, the educators are wonderful at involving the children and express a love for what they do.

3.Personally, I believe the time for two's storytime is very beneficial to the younger children that visit the library. It helps with their imagination , and teaches them there are stories out there for everyone. I think it's fantastic that the Kingsport Library offers this. Keep up the good work!

4.We enjoy storytime very much. Thank you.

5.My niece loves putting her down own carpet square. She loves the interactive songs (wiggle time).

6.It is great the way it is.

7.My child and I enjoy storytime.

8.Very impressed with storytime at Kpt library.

9.Storytime is fun, my daughter loves storytime.

10.I like it how you also educate the children in storytime.

11.A wonderful time with friends! The staff and volunteers are amazing!

12.I have a two-year-old old son and also care for many other children during the week. We usually come to storytime twice per week and we love it. We’d like to say thank you to everyone who makes storytime possible. Keep up the good work guys!

6.1 Critique and analyze data collected: Discuss and report user feedback about the PL service in terms of their needs and information experiences, availability and access, barriers/challenges faced in using the select service, kinds of benefits in using the service, suggestions for improving the service, etc.

Three of the respondents completed the survey online via Survey Monkey. The other 13 respondents completed paper surveys. All the surveys were completed by those in attendance at the regularly scheduled Time for Two’s storytime. All but one of the respondents were completely satisfied with Time for Two’s. The one who wasn’t completed satisfied rated it a 9, which is still outstanding. The comments left at the end for any feedback about storytime were all positive. For those attending storytime, there isn’t much they know they want different.

Overall, the respondents are happy with the day and time on which storytime is offered. Those who wish for storytime to be on a different day did not indicated which day or time would be better for them. One respondent said she wished there could be a weekend storytime so their father could come. A majority did not want take home sheets of the songs or rhymes with only 37.5% wanting the sheets. While 37.5% is not a majority, it is almost one-fourth of the audience and is an effort staff should look into to see if the resources are available to provide take-home sheets. However, if resources are not available or it is a choice between take home sheets and a different activity with a higher interest rate, the take home sheets should be eliminated.

The respondents were split between what they wanted to see more of in storytime, but the largest number with 8 (50%) want more puppets and interactive play is a close second with 6 (37.5%). Songs is third with 4 (25%) votes. Staff already thought puppets were the most popular and this proves they were correct in their assumption and that puppets should continue to be a staple of storytime.

Only one respondent wanted storytime on a different day than Thursday. The remaining fifteen did not want the date or time of storytime to change. In regards to a storytime for children younger than two, 11 (68.75%) said they were not interested and 6 (37.5%) indicated an interest in such a storytime. One respondent commented that their son is one and a half, but they come to Time for Two’s. Another commented that “it would be nice to have storytime with songs and stories (no crafts) for babies younger than two.” While this is not a majority, it is enough of an indication that staff should seek out more opinions, particularly of those with children younger than two to see if a storytime is of interest.

For demographics, the majority of adults are the parents (62.5%) of the children. The second largest is nanny/babysitter with 25%, grandparents are third (18.75%) and aunt last with 12.5%. It is not surprising that parents are the largest number, but it was surprising for babysitters to be second. While few indicated an interest in take-home sheets with several parents not attending take-home sheets could be beneficial to those parents who are unable to attend.

There was one male in attendance who did report his age. The rest of the respondents identified their gender as female and were relatively equal across the age groups between 21 to 60+. The largest age group with four responses was 26-30 and 21-25 and 31-35 tied for second with 3 responses each. The only age group with no responses was under 20. This shows an unutilized group of young parents who could benefit from storytime, however there are a variety of reasons younger parents may not be attending. They may still be trying to finish school, do not know about storytime, or do not have the means to travel to the library for storytime. Though the library does Outreach it may need to think more out of the box to better reach the members of the community, especially teen mothers who may not know the resources available to them.

6.2 Improvement strategies: Present a plan for improvement strategies to implement in relation to the selected service for the PL to follow based on the data that you collected during this study. Develop a categorization scheme for the improvement strategies under different headings as appropriate (e.g., web representation, training, marketing to users, etc.).

Overall, there were very few areas for improvement as identified by the survey. The respondents do wish to see more puppets and interactive play in the storytime. The second and third more requested items were storytime on a different day of the week and a storytime for younger children.

Training

All of the suggested improvements require more and continuous training for the regular storytime performer, Kyndra Jones, and the rest of the staff. To incorporate more puppets in new ways to keep the children and parents excited will require innovative thinking. Webinars could aid in this for new storytime techniques with the staff coming up with ways to adapt the new techniques for puppets in storytime.

If Time for Two’s is offered more than once a week, additional staff training would be necessary. Depending on the day and time, it may be necessary to have more than one staff member perform storytime. Staff taking on the additional responsibility of planning and performing a storytime will require training for those staff member(s). The first step for staff new to storytime would be to observe a session or two of the storytime. Next, would be to look over Kyndra’s planned storytime and browse the storytime bags to see how she does it to know how they may need to adapt it for their style of storytime. After observing storytime and developing their own method of plotting out a storytime, the next step would be practice for staff members before performing a storytime with Kyndra present. The next step would be performing their own storytime, hopefully confident in their abilities to perform solo.

If a storytime for babies is implemented training would be needed for all staff to determine the developmental needs of babies. Ideally, one or more staff members would observe a baby storytime at a local library. In lieu of that, storytimes posted on YouTube would be watched as would webinars on the best practices for baby storytime. Rhymes, books, and songs would need to be researched. A plan for implementation would need to be created as would a rationale for the library administration and a similar one for the parents. Staff would need to decide if registration would be required and how many babies would be allowed in each session, how long they would run, what time and day it would be on, and how often it would be offered. As with any new program, the rest of the staff, especially the circulation staff, would be notified to help field any questions and direct patrons to the proper space on the day of the program.

6.3 Report findings to your PL and provide feedback about their response to your findings.

Youth Services staff were delighted by the overall positive response of the surveys. Having never done a formal survey before for Time for Two’s, no one knew what to expect. Both the storytime performer and her supervisor were pleased and touched by the comments left and felt positive about the work being done at the library. The storytime performer was surprised by how popular puppets were. She mentioned she had cut back on using them because they do feature in a majority of storytimes and was concerned about the children getting tired of them. With a majority wanting to see more puppets, Kyndra Jones mentioned she will need to work more puppets into the storytime and think of new ways to use them (Jones, K, Personal Communication, April 21, 2015).

Staff were also surprised at the number of nannies/babysitters along with the wide range of ages. Ms. Jones found the information valuable in terms of thinking about future storytime and seeing the diversity of ages and relations to the children. Storytime are often themed and include something special for mom or dad, but the surveys show that many of the people bring the children are not actually their parent and it might be a good idea to think of ways to incorporate times for caregivers (Jones, K, Personal Communication, April 21, 2015).

6.4 Critique your process: Discuss and report your process while conducting user-centered assessment in your evaluation action plan and include your observations, what worked and did not work, obstacles and challenges, etc. Provide a discussion of the most interesting facts that emerged during the process.

The most difficult part of the process was determining the best way to reach users. Flyers were made with a link and a QR code to the survey, but only three responses were completed online, two of which were completed the day of storytime. Promoting the survey the day of storytime worked best and all but one results were completed the day of storytime. While the responses were fantastic and thoughtful, the reach was limited. Those who do not attend storytime offered no opinion as all respondents already attend. While feedback from those attending is essential in determining areas for improvement, there are no insights in how to better reach those who do not attend or what could be changed to draw more people in.

Most surprising was the level of satisfaction. The author and the staff assumed the patrons were relatively happy with storytime as it is because of attendance and the comments made by parents and caregivers, but no one expected the lowest score to be a 9 on a scale of 1-10 and for all but one to rate it as a 10. With the wealth of storytime blogs available and the near constant comparisons to what other libraries are doing it is easy to feel like one isn’t doing enough. There isn’t enough or any technology; there are too many songs; we don’t have offer it enough. The survey shows though that what is being done is loved and appreciated. While librarians may always want to do more and are constantly seeking new ideas, this push for something more than what is currently being done does not negate the program as it is. While new ideas and ways to shake up storytime are welcome and necessary, it is important to recognize what is excellent about the current program and to see its current worth in the community.

The demographics revealed a surprising statistic. Mothers were expected to be the largest group and they were, but the second largest was babysitters/nannies. With this many people coming who are not relatives, there may be untapped market to promote storytime. It also offers the opportunity to include more books about caregivers and all the adults who are important to children may not be their biological parents.

Overall, the survey was a success. Staff members even expressed a desire to adapt the survey to offer it to patrons at the Preschool Storytime. Just like Time for Two’s, Preschool Storytime has never been officially validated and now with a working survey that requires only a few tweaks, staff seem excited to gather more user feedback.

Spring 2015

Contact K.C. Williams

451 Communications Building, 1345 Circle Park Drive, Knoxville, TN 37996-0341

Phone:865-974-2148
Fax:865-974-4967
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