Thursday, January 29, 2015

Looking for e-Resource News?
Effective January 21, 2015 Fauquier County Public Library's e-Resource News moved to a new home. Our recommended websites and technology tips can now be found at, along with a ton of other great information – book reviews, staff recommendations, program highlights and other library tools. Check us out!

~ Alison, Electronic Resources Librarian, Fauquier County Public Library

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online at

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Science Fair Madness Begins!

Do you (or does your child) have a science fair project due? Or are you a parent, teacher or home schooler looking for some practice guides for hands-on science learning? Recommended online sources for project ideas, tips and guides include:
  • Access Science - All you need is your library card number and you can access supporting articles and research for your science fair projects and research papers. Award-winning materials include encyclopedia articles, videos, news and more.
  • Discovery Education's Science Fair Central - Includes hundreds of project ideas, advice from judges and previous winners and display tips.
  •'s Science Explorations - With the help of audio, text, photos, and video, students thoroughly explore six science topics, from the Galapagos Islands to giant squid.
  • - Here you'll find science fair projects, ideas and experiments from various government agencies; broken down by age and includes a special section for teachers/parents.
  • - Hosted by "Science Bob" Pflugfelder, this site is aimed at elementary and middle school students and includes videos and printable directions.
  • - K-12 students, parents, and teachers can quickly and easily find free project ideas and help in all areas of science from physics to food science and music to microbiology
For offline resources, search the library's online catalog (or browse in the 507.8 and J.507.8 nonfiction section -- sort by "reverse year" to see the most recent titles) to place holds/check out books for science project ideas, including:

For Teens/Older Students

Teens (or middle- or high-school teachers) in search of high quality science content on the web will want to check out Sparticl, a joint venture between Twin Cities Public Television and 3M. Sparticl is a new resource that provides users with filtered, "best of" science materials, including answers to science questions, images, videos, games, and hands-on activities -- all curated by a team of experts.

Sparticle is also a place where teens play a critical part – ranking content, sharing it, and recommending new content, all the while earning points and badges.

In addition, it's a great place for teens to explore careers available to students with education and training in STEM (science, engineering, technology, and math).

Content on the site is broken down by category:
  • Living Things - Mammals, birds, fungi, etc.
  • Matter & Energy - Physics and chemistry topics
  • Tech & Invention - Computers, engineering, transportation
  • Body & Brain - Health, behavior, nutrition
  • Earth & Space - Ecology, environment, space, weather, etc.
  • Explore - Seems to cover everything else, like dinosaurs, sports and controversies
The next time you need to look up/explore a scientific topic, be sure to give these recommended resources a look.

~ Alison, Electronic Resources Librarian

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online at our new website -

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Learn research "best practices" for high school and beyond

Research Basics for High School Students is a free, Moodle-based research skills course/curriculum developed with librarian partners.  Aimed at addressing the needs of college-bound students, each of the three modules includes video lessons, practice learning activities, a short quiz and a badge reward system to help high school students build academic research skills.

JSTOR, a subscription-based digital library of academic journals, books, and primary sources, offers the course, but you don't have to have a subscription (as an institution or individual) in order to take advantage of the course. (Please note that Fauquier County Public Library is not a subscribing institution.)

The course is made up of three self-paced modules, each containing three short (approx. 10 minute) video lessons and three corresponding sets of practice activities. Each module ends with a quiz to test your knowledge.

  • Module 1 includes: Effective Searching: Using Library Tools (on databases), Smart Searching Methods (search strategies), Managing Information Overload (planning, refining, documenting);
  • Module 2 includes: Establishing Credibility: The A-B-Cs of Scholarly Sources, Additional Ways of Identifying Scholarly Sources, Verifying Online Sources
  • Module 3 includes: Citing Scholarly Work: Creating Citations, Citing and Paraphrasing, Works Cited, Bibliographies, and Notes
Students may receive up to three badges, one for each of the course modules.

~ Alison, Electronic Resources Librarian

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

New smart phone or tablet? We have an app for that!

NewYearDid Santa bring you a new tablet, smartphone or e-reader this holiday season? If so, now is the time to get started with e-books, e-audio books and downloadable magazines from Fauquier County Public Library.

e-books & e-audio books from OverDrive

The Blue Ridge Download Consortium, powered by OverDrive, is the place to go to find popular fiction and nonfiction e-books and e-audiobooks. If you’re using a tablet or smartphone, you will want to download OverDrive’s free mobile app, OverDrive Media Console, to easily find and save your library’s OverDrive website and to download and enjoy borrowed titles on your device. Get the app from your app store or from for these popular devices and platforms: Android™, BlackBerry®, iOS (iPhone®/iPad®/iPod® touch), Windows® Phone, Kindle® Fire tablets, KoboTM tablets, and NOOK® tablets. For complete details on how to get started using your specific device, you'll want to check out Getting started with OverDrive.

e-audio books from OneClickdigital

In addition to OverDrive, the library subscribes to OneClickdigital, which includes exclusive Recorded Books audiobooks, available to Android, Kindle Fire, Nook, iPhone, iTouch and iPad users. The OneClickdigital collection includes works by popular authors such as Lawrence Block, Rita Mae Brown, James Lee Burke, Alexander McCall Smith, Elizabeth Peters, and John Sandford. OneClickdigital also includes a collection of classic e-book titles. The nice thing about OneClickdigital is that checkouts are unlimited - your entire book club or reading group can check out a OneClickdigital copy of a title and enjoy listening to the title together.

e-magazines from Zinio

Full digital versions of your favorite magazines, including the Economist, House Beautiful, Rolling Stone, Smithsonian Magazine and Weight Watchers are available for download to your tablet or computer. New issues are released and ready for download at the same time as the print edition - many before they arrive at the library. You can  check out as many issues as you want and keep them in your account for as long as you wish. To get started, watch this how-to video, then create your Zinio accounts (one for the library, one for, download the free Zinio reader app for your iPhone, iPad, Android, Win 8, Mac, PC or Kindle device, and start reading!

Want to learn more?

Library staff will introduce you to the latest apps available for your device, including e-book/e-audio book and digital magazine apps, as well as our mobile catalog and the Transparent Language Online mobile app, on the following dates at the Warrenton Library:
  • Saturday, Jan. 10, 10:30-noon
  • Saturday, Jan. 24, 10:30-noon
  • Sunday, Feb. 8, 1:30-3 p.m. 
  • Saturday, March 14, 1:30-3 p.m. 
If you can't make it to one of these events, be sure to ask our friendly reference staff for tips and advice.

  ~ Alison -- Electronic Resources Librarian

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New year, new (healthier) you with our e-Resource of the Month

Resolve to get healthy (or healthier) in 2015? Check out our January e-Resource of the Month, Gale's Health & Wellness Resource Center, which can help you find health and wellness information as quickly as a Google search, but with the accuracy of library-quality results.

Features and Benefits

  • Includes the respected Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine 
  • Authoritative reference material as well as full-text magazines, journals, and  pamphlets from a wide variety of authoritative medical sources 
  • Current health news headlines 
  • Video content and physician-authored articles 
  • Database of drugs and herbal remedies 
  • Up-to-date contact information for various service agencies, offices, companies, people and health products 
  • Links to numerous calculators and risk assessment tools 
  • An alternative medicine module that looks at health care from a holistic lens 
In addition, make sure to check out our Health Resources page on our website for additional online health information, as well as lists of recommended books and videos to check out from our collection.

~ Alison -- Electronic Resources Librarian

 To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Spiritual Literacy Month

December, a time for holidays and observances of different faiths and cultural traditions, is also Spiritual Literacy Month. Broadening your understanding of religions and cultures from around the world with these e-resources:
~ Alison, Electronic Resources Librarian

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Search Like a Librarian

If you're a frequent library user, you probably spend a lot of time searching for items in our catalog.

The library catalog is a powerful tool, but sometimes it's challenging to narrow your search to the items you want. Here are some tips for power users who want to master our catalog.

1. Modify Your Search

Getting too many search results? Modify Search will help you narrow your search.

In this example, a search for "pie" has 8 pages of results—everything from pie-themed mysteries to picture books.

Select Modify Search to limit the scope of your search. Options include:
  • Location: Limit your search to items at specific branches and in specific collections (such as Juvenile and Audiovisual).
  • Material Type: Limit your search by material type. Material types include print books, CD books, and DVDs.
  • Year: Limit by publication year. Use this option if you only want newer titles on a topic.
Using Modify Search, I can limit my pie search to the Warrenton Adult collection and Printed Materials. Using this technique, I get 3 pages of results, not 8.

2. Search by Call Number

Modify Search is powerful, but it doesn't search categories such as mystery or science fiction.

You can search these categories using the call number prefixes on our item spines. Prefixes include FIC for adult fiction, MYS for adult mysteries, and CF for adult fiction on CD. You'll find a list of item prefixes on our catalog help page.

To search a single category, include the call number prefix in your keyword search. For instance, to find pie-themed mysteries for a foodie book club, search for pie MYS.

This search will bring up results with the prefix MYS. Instead of slogging through 8 pages of results, you'll get a single page of delicious titles such as Pecan Pies and Homicides. 

You can also search for nonfiction items by their Dewey Decimal Classification. Select CALL NO from the drop-down menu on the left and enter the call number you want.

For instance, a search for 796.323 will find basketball nonfiction, and a search for 378.3 will find college financial aid guides. You don't need to memorize Dewey Decimal to use this technique—browse the shelves, check our catalog Dewey Decimal Classification help page, or ask a librarian to find the section appropriate to your search.

If you have questions about the catalog or need help finding a specific item, our librarians are happy to help. You can visit a library branch, call us, or ask online.

Happy searching!

Becky @ Warrenton

To learn more about the Fauquier County Public Library's collection, events or programs, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or online.