Thursday, January 24, 2008

Black History Month Resources

February is Black History Month. Celebrate African American heritage with the following resources:

Parents, be sure to bring your children to Warrenton Library's special Black History Month story hour on Saturday, February 16. Crafts and stories will reinforce what you've learned online.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Automobile Guides - Part Two

Aside from the many general buying guides available at the library and on the web, there are other resources related to cars that will be of interest to purchasers and owners.

Auto Repair & Owner Manuals
The library carries the Chilton manuals and those available for check-out are mostly located in the 629 area of the non-fiction section.

On the Web, the following sites offer repair information and resources:
Safety & Reliability
The Car Book and Consumer Reports includes this information, and the following Web sites provide consumers with specific safety information:

Energy Efficiency
The following Web sites provide fuel economy information -- of particular interest during these times of high fuel prices:

Related Post: Automobile Guides - Part One

Automobile Guides - Part One

Looking for advice before you hit the new and used car lots? Check out the following resources available through the Fauquier County Public Library and on the web.

Library Materials
You can search the library's online catalog for items under the subjects Automobiles -- purchasing and Used cars -- purchasing. Specific recommended titles include:

The Car Book 2007 by Jack Gillis REF 629.222 GIL (Library Use Only)

Consumer Reports (behind Reference Desk):

  • April - Annual Auto issue – used and new car buying guide;
  • October – Annual issue - Best and Worst New Car Preview – brief reviews and prices

N.A.D.A. Official Used Car Guides (behind Reference Desk) – used car prices

Databases - Use your library card to log in to Find It Virginia to search InfoTrac and General Reference Center Gold for consumer publications, including full-text Consumer Reports.

On the Web
The following Web sites provide a wealth of information for the prospective car buyer. You may also want to read "Confessions of a Car Salesman" by investigative journalist Chandler Phillips for If you don't have access to a computer, stop by your local library and get connected.

Look for my upcoming post, Cars/Automobiles - Part Two, where I'll highlight auto repair manuals, saftey ratings and other automobile-related resources available at the library and on the Internet.

You can also ask for a printed version of the library's car guide at the reference desk.

Related Post: Automobile Guides - Part Two

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Science Fair Frenzy

Brush off your beakers, get ready to drop eggs from the roof -- it's science fair time. FCPL reference staff have assisted a number of harried parents and students as of late, all on a quest for winning (or at least passing!) science fair project ideas and supporting materials. Below are some helpful resources available through the library as well as recommended Web sites to help parents and students get through this annual event.

Search the online catalog for science project materials including:

Access Science - Online database available 24/7 through the library's Web site. All you need is your library card number and you can access supporting articles and research for your science fair projects and research papers. Their Study Guides section provide a program of study and reference. The topics covered are linked to all relevant material for that topic on Access Science including encyclopedia articles, videos, news and more.

Discovery Education's Science Fair Central - Includes over 250 project ideas, tips from judges and previous winners and display tips.

Intel's International Science and Engineering Fair - Site for one of the most prestigious competitions, has a Science Fair Primer section for anyone involved in need of science fair project ideas that covers tips for students AND parents. Also includes a database of ISEF-affiliated fairs.

Neuroscience for Kids - The Experiment section of the Web site allows users to model a nervous system, create experiments on reflexes and advice on creating a successful science fair project. - Use their topic selection wizard to figure out the best project for you.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Visual Dictionary Online

Wondering what poultry shears look like? Connect words with images when you use the new Merriam-Webster Visual Dictionary Online. You can search one of fifteen themes such as "society" and "transport and machinery" (or "food and kitchen" for obscure utensils) to quickly locate words and their meaning, along with detailed illustrations. The site also includes audio pronunciations.
While the visual dictionary is geared at all skill levels, this resource may be especially helpful for English language learners.

How-To Videos

Are you more of a visual learner? If you're interested in learning how to draw, cook, make crafts or refinish your hardwood floors, check out Expert Village, a free web site that has thousands of how-to and instructional videos from credentialed "experts," at least those judged to be by the company that hosts the site. Video cateogires include automative and mechanical, health and fitness, crafts, pets, food and drink and even parenting.

eHow is another large web site comprised of tutorials (video and articles) contributed by the site's editorial team and by other users. A number of topics are covered (and more granular than Expert Village), including building and remodeling, consumer law, photography and even how to jump-start a car. While the site is fairly easy to use and covers many interests, the incorporation of ads by Google may confuse some users.

For teachers, there's a site called TeacherTube which aims to "fill a need for a more educationally focused, safe venue for teachers, schools, and home learners" via instructional videos.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

eResource of the Month for January

Looking for directions to the new restaurant in town? Do an Internet search. But what if you're looking for authoritative information on a medical diagnosis you just received? Gale's Health & Wellness Resource Center can better help you find health and wellness information as quickly as an Internet search but with the accuracy of library-quality results.

Features and Benefits
Including the respected Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine, the Health & Wellness Resource Center delivers up-to-date reference material as well as full-text magazines, journals, and pamphlets from a wide variety of authoritative medical sources. Additionally, consumers, students, and professionals are provided with descriptions of and links to many pertinent websites, selected for their usefulness and appropriateness.

Specifically, Health & Wellness Resource Center features:
  • Current health news headlines

  • Video results under a new Videos tab

  • Newspapers, newsletters and newsfeeds

  • Database of herbal drugs and 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 Health module that looks at health care from a holistic lens
Quality and Quantity
Health & Wellness Resource Center maintains an index of more than 1,100 health and medicine magazines and journals - 544 of which are peer-reviewed - and 626 of which are active full-text titles.

Multimedia Features
Health & Wellness Resource Center has partnered with Healthology, an industry leader in providing health and medical video content and physician-authored articles. You can access the Healthology content from the Health Highlights area of the home page. And whenever you perform a search using the search box or using the Advanced Search page, your results may include video content from Healthology as listed on the Video tab of your results list.

Ivy League Credentials
Health & Wellness Resource Center also brings you the latest health news from Harvard Health Publications, a division of the Harvard Medical School. You can view top headlines directly from the home page in a section called Breaking News, with a link browse additional headlines.

Access the Database Anytime

Fauquier County Public library card holders can access the database from home, 24X7, using the library's Web site. Under Find Information, click on Databases. Scroll down to Magazines & Newspapers and select Find It Virginia Periodical Indexes.