LITT: Adult Services

The Adult Services LITT is a place for library staff supporting adult services programming in Idaho to connect and share via a quarterly online chat and ongoing Listserv.

The LITT: Adult Services Listserv is a great way to stay connected between chats. Check out our listserv guidelines before posting.

Check the calendar to the right for when the next Adult Services LITT Chat will be happening.

You can find inspiration and resources on ICfL’s Adult Services page.

Subscribe to the LITT: Adult Services Listserv

Notes from Past LITT: Adult Services Chats


  • Take and makes
  • Zoom book discussions
  • Christmas book/ potluck
  • Outside programming
  • Let’s Talk About It was successful w/ existing book club group
  • Adult field trip kits,
  • Passive programs
    • ASL meeting group f2f
    • Women and Children’s Alliance weekly table
    • Idaho Dept of Labor weekly table
  • Boredom busters to everyone who borrows items > crossword, coloring sheets, Sudoku, 10-15 pages, seasonal theme
  • Grow With Google > looking into business education early spring
  • Fidget quilts, help making > how organize

Future topics:

  • Connecting to housing help/ funding and navigating the online systems
  • AARP reps > invite to future chat
  • Technology assistance with


  • Connect with community partners each month in blog posts
  • Attendees liked the idea of an adult services listserv where they could discuss between quarterly chats

Housing Resources:


  • Focus on older adults because they’re least likely to be able to make it to library visit assisted living/ home deliver > getting started you need time and a vehicle
  • Boise PL uses volunteers extensively for home delivery
  • Word of mouth is great for getting the word out > get in at one facility and then spreads from there
  • Home delivery items are circulating items, one person does RA for each person, checks them out on their cards, drops them off, picks them up down the road. Haven’t had issues with items not coming back. Keep in mind that if a user is having memory issues then might want to use donated books that don’t need to come back.
  • Bringing outreach vehicle to low-income housing and mobile home parks
  • How do you reach “non-user” adults > Focus of bookmobile might be children, but can also be an opportunity to reach parents of those children > seeking out families > delivering holds, having mobile printing, online lifelong learning resources for adults
  • Social media is great way to reach adults
  • “Secret fishing spot” presentation in MLD was one of their most popular

Get adults interested in emerging technology:

  • Hosted a technology playground, even a code-a-pillar was popular, was 65+, information as basic as how to turn it on was usuful, had an iPad out to help w/ OverDrive/ Libby
  • Have technology items sitting out at other programs that are less tech heavy has created opportunities for asking, “What is that?”VR issues w/ balance so suggest using a swivel office chair for those who want to try VR, and casting to a large screen for those who would rather watch
  • Creative Bug as basis for crafting programming ideas, could use YouTube videos too

Ideas for future chats:

  • AARP
  • Idaho Commission on Aging
  • Writing workshops- Invite local writer to talk about crafting a character, things that make up a good plot, published some of their work, host group writing times for

Summer Reading

  • LTAI author talk videos,
  • Ada Victory is having after hours kick off party w/ music on patio, mocktails, scavenger hunt, door prizes, free books
  • Onieda adult book club every second Monday, after hours adult education classes, May have a best selling author zooming in, June Disney, Sept Glowforge, first time offering after hour programming
  • Idaho Falls adult reading now just reading every day and every 20 days they get a prize, small prizes like lip balm, coupon for a fancy soda or slice of pizza, 60 days they get a free Tshirt and grand prize entries, trying to get them physically in the library, prizes for reading different genres of books
  • BPL have year long ultimate book nerd challenge so not doing so much for summer, read 20 minutes everyday, 20 days and 30 days get books, 60 days a prize, 80 days get another book, staff can participate, 4 staff designed paper reading logs
  • Madison LD over 1,000 participating in adult summer reading, they do pages, and suggest 3,000 over the 2 months w/ opportunities to get extra pages, library centennial celebrations
  • Books at beginning and the end, pollinator program, hobby exchange, kick off at facility for adults w/ developmental disabilities
  • Hobby exchange – connecting w/ people who took a deep dive into a hobby, ‘Do you have everything you’d need to start this hobby but aren’t doing it anymore?”, a 2-hour event where everything is set out, like a clothing swap, sharing of ideas and learning too, direct participants to databases/ ebooks that are related, give people a coupon for # things they can take, put limits on how much stuff they can bring,
  • Tracking summer reading – give people the option to use Beanstack, but will always have paper available because some folks hated online, enter into Beanstack for patrons, Read Square is another vendor, Beanstack has a way to track off-line users

Digital inclusion
What types of questions do you get?

  • Ada Community – Tech Coach service 1on1 w/ patrons who have tech questions, how to use my phone to using OverDrive, NOT IT support, form on website to, there are a couple of staff who are trained specifically, the class attendance tends to drop off, users want more 1on1, they have been doing Grow w/ Googl,, for the last 5 weeks for people 18yo+ small turn out but have gotten traction for people who need fundamentals, will start a new weekly program “Digital Skills basics” existing classes, Tech Coaches training they determine best coach and topic so they can prep, heavy month would be just a couple, promote during fit/ fall classes and ask what best time is
  • Struggles w/ people who need quick vs longer help, computer classes are not very well attended, trying to figure out service model that works for community, one library had talked about doing weekly drop-in hour
  • Victory tried drop-in once a month and didn’t have a lot of interest, a staff person sits there for an hour or two
  • A lot of questions about phones and tablets
  • A lot of tech questions are about taxes, medical records, “is our job to help people fill them out?” What do you do? Some won’t type anything in but will look over shoulder, could have some bad legal outcomes, tell them to bring in a friend or advocate to help them we can’t do everything for everyone

What types of help could your users benefit from?

  • How to integrate info lit into regular reference interactions w/o making it into a full class
  • Monthly business resource workshop as those resources can be hard to navigate
  • Intermediate/ improving skills online would be OK, but basic tech stuff is better one-on-one
  • People like the phone bank idea for tech help
  • Some of the questions are needed more for library specific
  • Two models shared are CyberSeniors, and NDIA’s Digital Navigators,

9 attendees chatted about the following:

Digital Skills
Most asked digital skills questions?
– Password management leads to loop of death to access because users don’t understand how things are interconnected. An info graphic of how it works would be useful.
– How cell phones are used to increase security, like when users receive a code to retrieve their password
– Social media most asked about is Youtube, email, and facebook
– How to find, access, and fill out forms online for job applications, medical records, and legal issues
– Using a smartphone after a flip phone and translating from one to the other, just like from phone to tablet
– Terminology can be very confusing, like “save it to the desktop”, “open a new tab”, hamburger and waffle menus. These are not necessarily phrases users understand.
– People come in with little to no digital skills, so staff need to remember that when assisting them
– Users might forget how to do these tasks from one time to the next, so someone to help each time is needed
– Low literacy/ reading comprehension in general, not just digital means users get frustrated and move through websites quickly and this leads to frustration and can be a security risk

How address some of these needs?
– Got a low-vision keyboard with big bright keys, color groupings
– One library used Grow With Google basic digital skills classes, but has found one-on-one is best
– Digital skills workshops in a box could include curriculum, handouts, slides, and a script. Leading classes can be scary for staff, so making as easy to deliver as possible. A curriculum or teaching plan that could be adopted across the state would also mean other libraries could act as support.
– State-wide 1-800 tech help number
– All of these must come with a good marketing campaign! Bookmarks with clear and simple language
– One library has a handout with all their digital resources. When they pass it out at the service desk, they highlight the resource they talked about with the user and include steps of how to get there
– News/ information literacy training can help with possible online safety issues. Show users how to “follow to the facts”

What barriers exist for you?
– Time to develop classes
– Staff to run classes
– Low attendance at teaching type classes has helped them see users actually prefer one-on-one
– Comfort of staff transferring skills and knowledge to others might be because staff are presented as the “expert.” What if reframe as a tech buddy and remove expectation that staff are “experts”

– “Technology Classes” might be intimidating so consider using different language? “I’m not a tech person, so I don’t need that.”
– One library has Tech tutors that do one-on-one sessions. Tutor’s areas they can help with are listed on the website and at each session they fill out a tech tutor sheet that says what they worked on and the homework the user was going to do. The library keeps a copy to reference they next time the user comes in, and the user keeps a copy to remind them of the skill they were going to work on.
– Most popular adult programs – Murder Mystery dinner party and craft nights in Mountain Home, Craft nights > socializing in Ada, xeriscape gardening and book your best vacation are after hours programming for adults in Oneida, Plant/ seed exchange and seed planting paper, after hours summer reading kick off w/ mocktails and a band
– How get more people to show up? One idea was to have programs be more community led. This would mean less work for staff in developing the program, and the community member would have a vested interest in inviting their friends. Could also try regular scheduling on same day and time of each month.
– Homeschooling summit in the fall where they offer a half-day workshop on LiLI resources and more

7 attendees

Upcoming programs

  • Guest speaker coming to Twin Falls to speak about Veteran’s Issues and Services, and how to support veterans
  • Fall crafts class – making pumpkin garlands with yarn, pony bead corn
  • Bookclub – The Beadworkers By Beth Piatote
  • Social Club – trivia night, postage stamp tealight votive candle holders

Movie nights

  • performance license through swank,
  • do not put name of movie in marketing materials because of licensing
  • license has limitations
  • Classic movie Mondays at another library, they CAN use movie name
  • Can usually use name in direct marketing
  • Interactive movie nights, everyone gets an activity packet and a script


  • One library is offering MORE programming for adults, was in response to what community wanted, responses in a survey
  • Asked what do you want to do, what do you want to see > boxes to mark off > did for a few months at all adult programs and had on book displays
  • Good luck posting on Meet-up
  • Whole community survey for strategic plan, offered incentive to increase participation
  • Ask what programming, wanted how-to and DIY, cultural, children’s. Game nights

Social media use

  • Auto sign-up for newsletter when get new card w/ email
  • Don’t really use twitter, but Facebook is huge
  • Instagram posts are popular
  • College can send out email blast
  • Libraries using tiktok to promote services in general
  • Not necessarily reaching local people with tiktok


  • Had links to informational sites
  • Had an old ballot box on display
  • Made video on how to get mail-in ballot,

Program delivery

  • Do all programs both in-person and post on YouTube later, does just light editing
  • Having talks recorded means they get broader reach, if presenters give permission
  • Still doing D&D online only to accommodate one player who cannot come into library
  • Once back in-person, no one was doing virtual programming

Language classes

  • Growing Spanish speaking community in Idaho
  • Held community conversations
  • Been offering conversational English classes in evening to accommodate work schedules, weekly
  • Requests from community for Spanish classes
  • Language exchange where speak just in Spanish for 10 min, then English for 10 min, come back together as group to discuss and learning conversational language together
  • Looking at VERY basic Spanish conversational class thinking about
  • Decided early on that language program lead gets an honorarium
  • Partnered with local literacy center to lead language classes, Here are the books they used: Textbooks:, Workbooks:, Lesson Plan:

6 attendees


  • AARP has a fraud program they can come and do
  • Scam Jam w/ Boise Police Department
  • Had police fraud department come and do a presentation for all ages
  • FTC resources


  • Monthly Coffee and Connections to connect w/ services > promote on Boise baby boomers meet up group
  • Explorers club for adults w/ physical/ mental disabilities > attendees from day centers > made valentines > social session too
  • Mystery Night, after hours, adults come in for clue/ amazing race combo, different activities for them to complete to get clues, work in teams, limit to 50ish people w/ waiting list for another 20 people, do twice a year, make them use book or catalog, about 20 stations, when the complete they should only have one suspect and motive at the end
  • Business and entrepreneur program coming up, resource fair
  • Home owner fair
  • Middle of day on a Saturday didn’t work, so moved to Thursday evenings, doing plant propagating, last one was caramel cooking, trying to think of ones that are less expensive
  • Connect with extension office to do a series of programs
  • Rupert extension office has someone who is nationally known for instapot
  • Q&A w/ master gardens from extension is always very popular
  • Will it air fry?
  • Will it waffle?
  • Denver Public Library adult services department
  • Speaker bureau Idaho Humanities Council,
  • Presentation on ageism, Deana will present if you would prefer to have someone outside your library facilitate

5 attendees

Summer programs
– Paint and sip – paint by numbers with mocktails, different images on card stock, PBNify will convert simple images and Printable Pictures has ready-made paint by number images
– Networking breakfast, 2nd Thursday of every month, provide snacks and beverages, 22 people, raffle with business cards for free hours in meeting room
– Entrepreneurial studio IWBC – 6 week program, will be 4 week program this time with an expert each time, people get PowerPoints even if don’t show up to session
– Water wise/ efficient yards – went to a local botanists’ yard, might do regular garden visits to see how changes over time, 30 people
– Heritage photo class – how to fix and repair, used to run a business doing some of this, uses Adobe Elements, they have scanners then she will show how to fix in Elements, digital scrap booking will be next
– Charcuterie board how-to – crackers, cheese, local meats, more of a presentation on showing how to do rather than everyone making one
– Rock painting – created a rock “cactus” garden with terracotta pots leftover from another program
– Backpacking 101 – a local outdoors expert shares their knowledge in a couple of ways; winter sports brought his own snowshoes and shared local places, lots of Q&A, hunting brought in equipment (not guns) spoke about how to use
– Beginning painting class filled very fast

Funding opportunities

– The Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health currently has an opportunity for grants up to $5,000 to support local health programs. Applications are due by June 30. Please see the newsletter below or visit the grant webpage for more information: Employee Community Fund – Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation (

Let’s Talk About It – Is your library in search of adult programing that is fun, educational, dynamic, and easy to implement? Are you wanting to host a book discussion series but don’t have the resources available to make it happen? If so, then Let’s Talk About It could be a great opportunity for your library. Applications must be submitted by 5pm on Friday, June 23.


– Creative Aging on-demand training –

– Looking for someone to lead fusion 360 or TinkerCAD classes – check with local 3D printing groups, local makerspaces, university?

4 attendees

We were joined by Laura Roghaar from the Idaho Commission on the Arts who shared about Lifetime Art’s upcoming funding and professional development opportunity, Creative Aging. Since I made an error when posting the time of the call, I have resources available for you:

5 participants

The group used the slides from Old School’s “Let’s Dismantle Ageism” workshop to guide discussion on the topic.

6 attendees

Resources/ recent programs
Idaho Family Caregiver Conference
– “Aging: So cool everyone is doing it” program and promo video

– Coffee and connections – special speaker each month for people over 50, connecting them w/ resources in the community, main speakers come from Learn Idaho
– Creative Aging grant, mosaics for folks 55 and over
– Trauma informed book club > “what happened to you” book club w/ Jennifer Redford was inspiration, there were 6 people who were really into it and have continued quarterly, now in 5th month doing a community volunteer event that relates to book, works with social worker to make some of that happen
– new season of programming w/ CNC classes going, has been difficult for staff to pick up, there is a super user who is helping w/ classes and manual for staff

– Attendance is hard, so hard when having an outside present come in and not one shows up – What if they got a prize for attending # of programs – Hold a party/ community event > punch cards
– Not having people who can present on high level topics > how teach Photoshop, and can’t guarantee people will show up
– What are motivations of those who attend and when? Would knowing this help with attendance?
– Adult’s lives get in the way of attending
– how to get community feedback on wants/ needs
– Attendance
– How not overlap w/ other things in community
– Adult services can be seen as an after thought > summer reading for adults
– Hard to advocate and get resources for adult services > Adult services thought of as “secondary” > “Well, don’t we support lifelong learning?” > storytelling
– “I haven’t been here since I brought my kids!” > don’t know what library can offer now
– Hailey has unique situation w/ VERY well funded library to north w/ Nobel Prize speakers, but don’t have that budget
– The community gets it (adult programming), but staff doesn’t always
– What does success look like for adult services vs kids > 5 vs 30 people > success might look different
– moving chairs back and forth vs more involved now, but took time to build up, word of mouth

What is working
– Advertising on meet-up > advertise where people already are
– Change in marketing team means easier to get stuff advertised now
– How to advertise to those who aren’t already here?

What tools and resources would help you?
– Speakers: List of places to get speakers from – How to bring speakers in and not spend a penny
– Promotion: List of “non traditional” places to advertise – Advertise on local baby boomer group > library events are different than other events their group – How reach users who aren’t already connected
– Social workers: How to get a trauma informed book club going/ social workers in libraries – A social worker that works w/ ICfL
– Share more details about programs besides at quarterly chats

Adult Services LITT Convening Recap we did a brief recap of highlights, heard from two pilot libraries, and did one of the activities from the event.  

There was then time to share programs people have done or are working on:

  • Memory cafes
  • Wildflowers
  • Summer reading kick-off party for adults included a jazz duo, free books, carft, and STEM activity
  • Summer Wellness series
  • LiLI database, Consumer Health Complete:

Questions or comments about LITT: Adult Services chats? Contact Deana Brown at


Early Learning LITT Discussion

August 15, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm MDT

LITT: On the Move – Summer Outreach Successes!

August 20, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm MDT

Early Learning LITT Discussion

October 17, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm MDT

Early Learning LITT Discussion

December 19, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm MST

Deana Brown

Adult Services Consultant
Email / 208-639-4156
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