Thursday, August 30, 2007

Recommended Books for Children

The library is in the process of posting online lists of recommended books for children and young adults. If you visit the library's home page, click on Children, which is listed under Areas of Interest on the left side of the Web site. Once you are on the Children's page, select Book Lists, and you'll get a page listing book lists by type and area of interest.

In many cases, the book titles are conveniently linked to the library's online catalog, so if you see a great adventure story, simply click on the title and then place a hold on the title using your online library account.

We will be adding more lists by topic/genre and will post lists especially for young adults in the Teens area in the coming weeks.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

New Items Lists Updated

Be sure to visit the library's catalog to see the latest materials added to the collection. Go to the library home page, click on catalog and then choose new to the collection. There you'll see the latest Mysteries, Fiction, Children's Picture Books, etc. These lists are normally updated once a month. If you recently read a review or checked a best seller list and don't see the item on the new book list, check with the reference staff and they will see if it's on order or recommend that the library purchase the book. You can also recommend library purchases by submitting the online form that's on the catalog main screen.

Monday, August 20, 2007

America's Best Colleges 2008

US News & World Report's much discussed, often-maligned college rankings guide has been updated for 2008. Aside from rank, you can search for colleges based on cost, location, majors and sports and activities. Check out the Top 100 lists for interesting cuts of data, including colleges with the most students in the Greek system and the most students studying abroad. Beware that some portions of the Web site require a login/subscription to the "premium online edition" for $14.95. If that seems pricey, you can always visit the Warrenton Library to look at the print edition.

If you plan on studying at a college or university outside of the United States, you may want to look at the Academic Rankings of World Universities.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Toy Recalls

With all the toy recalls in the news as of late, it's hard to keep track of what toys are safe and which ones are hazardous. The Consumer Product Safety Commission keeps a running list of hazardous/unsafe toy recalls on their Web site. All products (not just toys) that have been recalled/been in the news are also listed. You can also sign up for product recall alerts.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Summer Learning Activities Continue

Even though the library's 2007 Summer Reading Program has come to an end, there's still some time left this summer for kids to explore reading and writing through summer activities from the International Reading Association. Suggested activities, which are organized by grade and age level, include taking a virtual field trip using Web sites with Webcams and then filling out an observation worksheet.

Additional learning materials are available through the library's subscription to Encyclopaedia Britannica for Kids. After logging in with your library card, select Learning Materials, which is listed in the yellow Student Center area of the kids homepage.

If you participated in this year's summer reading program, be sure to fill out one of our online surveys:

Survey for parents/children through grade 5

Survey for students grades 6+

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Countdown to Kindergarten

If you're a subscriber to the library's News & Events blog/newsletter, you already know that we will be hosting a program for children to get ready for kindergarten. You can supplement this special program with online activities from the Countdown to Kindergarten Web site. Organized by month, every activity is "kid tested" and most can be done with things already in your home. Each month’s activity includes children’s books about similar topics that you can get at the library to read together. You/your kindergartner may also want to check out some of the library's books that feature kindergartners. When you're at your local library, be sure to also ask a children's librarian for our printed brochure on Recommended Reading for Preschoolers and Kindergartners.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Virginia Organic Directory

Want to buy organic and locally? The Virginia Organic Directory helps you do both. Though technically not a searchable database, the directory is organized by product and easy to use. Hopefully as more producers are added, the listings will be made searchable, so that you can limit to Fauquier County. Listings include organic farm products, processed products made with certified organic ingredients and organic livestock processors, and all are Certified Organic by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Now that you've found some fresh, organic produce, check out the library's natural foods cookbooks.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Hungry For Some New Words?

Almost 2,700 new and revised words were added this past month to the Oxford English Dictionary Online, including the slang term chill pill and fattoush, a popular Middle Eastern cuisine.

The Oxford English Dictionary, which covers words from across the English-speaking world, is the authority on the evolution of the English language over the last millennium and covers the meaning, history, and pronunciation of over half a million words, both present and past. You've probably seen the 20+ volume print edition lining the shelves of your local public or academic library, but the online edition, which you can access from home with your Fauquier County Public Library card, allows everything from simple word look-ups to sophisticated Boolean searching. You can use any of the fields in the OED, and your search can be done with speed and ease. The online edition even allows you to find a term when you know the meaning but have forgotten the word.

Now that you've read up on fattoush, why not whip up some delicious Middle Eastern food using one of the library's cookbooks?

America's Magazines & Newspapers

Are you aware that the library provides library card holders free access to Newsbank's "America's Newspapers"? You can read, print or download back issues of regional newspapers, including the Baltimore Sun, the New York Times, Philadelphia Inquirier, Richmond Times Dispatch, the Washington Post and the Washington Times. All titles include a minimum of the last 15 year's worth of articles.

Also, as part of the library's subscription to Newsbank, you get access to "America's Magazines," which cover U.S. and international news, business, lifestyle, entertainment, sports, and science and technology. Titles include Fortune, Entertainment Weekly, People, Popular Science, Sports Illustrated, Sports Illustrated Kids, Foreign Affairs, Baby Talk, InStyle and Real Simple. Just log in to the database with your Fauquier County Public Library card and select "America's News Magazines" from the list of databases.