- 10 to 15 you can run activities one at a time
- 15-30 you will need multiple stations for activities that can happen at the same time
- 30-50 need multiple stations and plan for some activities to run in multiple “flights”
- 10 to 15 teens = at least 2 staff
- 15 to 30 teens = at least 4 staff
- 30 to 50 teens = at least 7 staff
Lock-Ins can run for any designation of time - 4hrs, 8hrs, 10hrs - it's completely up to you, but will depend on number of staff and/or volunteers you have available.
To Keep in Mind When Choosing a Date:
- Are others available to help?
- Is the branch open the next day? If so, what time does it open?
- Are teens available that weekend? (Especially important if planned during the school year - look at major sports games, homecoming, prom dates etc.)
- If hosting an overnight lock-in you will need to let your Facilities department know & get permission for an after hours event. You also need to make sure they remember to keep the A/C or heater on.
- Signed Permission Form to register and/or participate in after-hours program. (I recommend that you have the Legal Department review form for insurance/liability purposes.)
- Teens must sign a Teen Agreement before participating.
- Teens must be between 12-18 years old and a current student in grades 6-12.
- Teens agree to stay for duration of lock-in. (If you have teens leaving at all hours, it becomes very difficult to keep track everybody's location.)
- No outside food or drink allowed (unless for religious/medical reasons).
- Parents should inform staff if a teen has any medications/dietary restrictions/allergies.
- Have Photo Release on file (unless parent/guardian will not sign) so that photos can be used for promotional purposes at a later date.
- Parents must sign their teens IN and OUT! This is a good way for you to have the chance to physically remind them about pick-up time. You also can determine that the adult leaving with a teen is approved by the teen's parents.
GRUB & BEVERAGE
Teens munch for most of the night, so I recommend having a table set up and stocked with snacks and drinks for the duration of the event.
- Pizza for dinner (all night lock-in)
- Water, Lemonade, Sports Drinks (I tend to avoid soda since the teens are hyper without caffeine.)
- Donuts or Breakfast Tacos & Juice (for breakfast)
If you want a Lock-In to run smoothly you need to plan a wide variety of programs to keep your teen occupied. When teens get bored, mischief and bad behavior ensue.
- Movie Room
- You should have a Movie Room with films playing all night
- This can also be the room where teen can sleep if they want (don’t expect many to sleep).
- Teens can leave their things in this room while doing other things
- Lights should be dim but not completely turned off
- An adult should be stationed in this room at all times
- Relay Races
- These are a good way to burn off some energy, promote interaction and break down any cliques that may exist when the Lock-In starts
- Relay Ideas
- Clothes Horse
- Pea and a Straw
- Beach Ball Between the Knees
- Bunny Hop
- Mummy Wrap
- Other Energy Burning Activities
- Red Light/Green Light, Freeze Tag, Simon Says
- Ultimate Twister (add knees and elbows to the spin card)
- Giant Jenga
- Video Arcade
- Variety is the key but also have a few staples
- While other games were played for a shorter times, Guitar Hero was an all-night event
- Craft Station
- Decorate a Pillowcase
- Sew a Dream Pillow
- Make a Journal
- Altered Books
- Design the Perfect Teen Space
- Mini Golf
- Need: putt putt clubs, golf balls
- Create course using library materials i.e. books, furniture, craft supplies
- Person with highest score gets prize
- Board Games
- Midnight Monopoly Tournament
- Giant Sequence
- Ghost Walk/Haunted House
- Take the teens through the library telling them spooky stories about the building. If you don’t have any real, make it up.
- Glow Sticks for teens (lights should be off)
- Small flashlight for leader
- Have volunteers (staff & older teens) work on creating a haunted house in a designated space. I use the second floor of my library which the teens are restricted from accessing during the Lock-In. If you don't have a second floor try to find another space that is separate from the rest of the Lock-In.
- If you have a large number of teens you will need to do more than one Ghost Walk
- YA Lit. Trivia
- Create a Trivia Game using YA Lit as the base for the questions
- How Well Do Your Teens Know: Twilight, Percy Jackson, Gallagher Girls, Cirque du Freak etc. Prizes for winners.
Questions? Feel free to leave them in the comment section and I'll respond as soon as possible.
Further Reading: Teen Librarian Toolbox has also done a couple posts on library Lock-Ins