Getting teenagers to return the books they have borrowed can sometimes be a daunting task that can eat away huge chunks of a librarian's time. Here at Seycove we compile weekly overdue lists and send them out to classrooms, but even with an automated system this can take up to a day. We make phone calls to parents, use the callback system to leave automated messages and send letters.
So I thought, why not use technology? Almost every teen carries a cell phone these days. This week I tried an experiment with one particularly recalcitrant individual. I asked him to use the alarm feature on his cell phone and had him set the alarm for 7:45 the next morning with a message to put the overdue book into his backpack. The book was returned the next day!