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We All Need a Little Poetry in Our Lives January 28, 2013

Posted by poppendeckc in Steele, Youth Services.
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Poetry – the word brings to mind a multitude of emotions, from gratitude, wonder, suffering, remorse and grief to passion, love, delight, joy, and so on. Poetry is a very old form of human expression, a literary art celebrated by most cultures through eons of humanity, and continues to inspire and express today.

Poetry is many things at once. Most of us don’t think of it on a daily basis, but poetry has a place in our everyday lives. What makes poetry valuable are these varied purposes.

Poetry is therapy. It helps us sort out confusion. It helps chronicle special or scary times. The desire or the need to create poetry resonates through many human conditions. Emotions too dear or too harsh can be expressed within a poetical format. Difficult ideas, indifference and consequences of indifference, bursts of nameless emotions, and turbulent times all have been expressed in poetry.

Children especially respond to poetry. Nursery rhymes are saturated with playful words and verses that weave a literary spell to enchant, amuse, and teach. It is a superb way to master a language, articulate feelings, or help a child make sense of a conscious experience they may not understand yet.

Poetry is a tool. It lends a dignity to our human condition while helping us discover a way to relate or explain ourselves to others.

Poetry is satisfying. It puts into words the myriad emotions we humans find ourselves experiencing. When a poet crafts an exquisite turn of phrase, it can be inspiration, even an epiphany for others experiencing the same struggle.

Poetry is a touchstone to ideals we hold dear. A line of a favorite poem can put many things into perspective, trigger a feeling of hope or pride, represent a flawless conviction we strive for.

CCLD currently holds roughly 2300 works of poetry in its collections. And, you guessed it, is all-inclusive – from epics, such as Gilgamesh, historic events like the Holocaust, the classics we all know, to children’s favorites, the not-so-familiar and the yet-to-be-discovered.

Friends of the Library will be conducting a Poetry Festival – see our website for more details. In addition, February begins the Central Library’s 5-week Poetry workshop for children ages 7 and up. These are two great opportunities to express ourselves through poetry.

Call the Central Library at 733-9174 or 733-8604 for more information.

Caroline Poppendeck, Librarian
Head of Youth Services
CCLD, Central Library

eBooks for Children and Learning January 16, 2013

Posted by poppendeckc in Technology, Youth Services.
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Children’s eBooks are becoming more available at your local library. The title list is burgeoning, and it is only the beginning! Everything from picture books, easy readers, chapter books, even nonfiction has been converted to eBook style, and can easily be borrowed to your eReader with a click of your mouse on your local library’s website!

eReaders are given as gifts, incentives, and for many more reasons. But have you considered the impact the reader may make on your child? How can you use an eReader to its best advantage beyond borrowing and loading?

The method of learning on an eReader is not merely different than the traditional book; learning the technical details in and of itself is a skill, and coupling this with reading comprehension creates twice the work.

According to author Lisa Guernsey, (Why eReading With Your Kid Can Impede Learning, on Time.com) parents happily guide their children through the technical use of an eReader, but comprehension of the reading material is overshadowed, neglected and suffers. Children can be left with a less homogenous understanding of the story, and this may affect their overall mastery of reading and comprehension.

So what can you do to support their efforts? Minimizing commands, both from you and from the eReader, can help a child grasp the material more thoroughly. Conversational interaction, or, chatting about the material, can be critical to learning. Allowing the child a chance to be thoughtful about the story helps the story sink in for better understanding. Ask her questions about what she thinks may happen next; talk about the situation in the story. Have fun! This effort remains the best tool for reading and comprehension in both paper books and electronic ones.

Also, let her control the device. Explore with no agenda, as this allows her to become acquainted with it and “own” it. Hold back directions from you and be patient.

Then pat yourself on the back for assisting your child to face future reading challenges by breaking down the comprehension barrier of traditional reading and electronic reading!

Caroline Poppendeck, Librarian
Head of Youth Services
CCLD, Central Library

New Year, New You January 7, 2013

Posted by roganp in Programs, Recommendations.
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Energy Every DayThe rallying cry at the library this year is: New Year, New You. We are having programs, displays, and lots of books and videos to get you started on a new improved you.

The first program is Healthy Eating and the Better Homes and Gardens Big Book of Healthy Family Dinners is available to help the whole family eat better. Another one I like is Appetite for Life: The Thumbs Up, No Yucks Guide to Getting your Kid to be a Great Eater by Stacey Antine. My kids are grown but I still remember how hard it was to get them to take the time to eat a healthy breakfast and to eat their vegetables without giving them to the dog under the table.

The next program is Active You and we have lots of books on exercise, yoga, walking, running, etc.  Energy Every Day by Ron Woods is a favorite of mine. We all know that if we eat well and exercise every day, we will have more energy but it’s hard to do. This book might give you the incentive you need!

The next program is called Spiritual You –  Richard Warren who wrote The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth am I Here for? has been on TV a lot lately and that always makes a book popular. Another is Following the Path The Search for a Life of Passion, Purpose and Joy by Joan Chittister.

The last program is Creative You and we have lots of books on crafts, how to do everything you can think of, from making furniture to sewing, knitting, or even making robots, if that’s where your heart leads.

Stop by our second floor display at Steele and check out our calendar of events for program details.

Phyllis Rogan, Reference Librarian
Steele Memorial Library

New Year’s Resolutions January 3, 2013

Posted by cclddirector in Community, Director's Comments, Uncategorized.
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Once again we have made it through the holidays. With the coming of the new year it is a time to reflect on changes we want, or need, to make and resolve to follow through with those changes.

Like many people I was curious about the resolution my friends and family made. So I started asking people and these seem to be the most common- they are not listed in any particular order-

1. Spend More Time with Family & Friends
2. Get in shape/lose weight
3. Quit Smoking
4. Enjoy Life More
5. Quit Drinking
6. Get Out of Debt
7. Learn Something New
8. Help Others
9. Get Organized
10. Take a trip
11. Fall in love

Perhaps you see some of your resolutions on this list?

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