Robin's blog

Readers' Guide Retrospective: An Old-Fashioned Research Tool Gets a Modern-Day Search Interface

Are you (ahem!) old enough to remember the green set of Readers’ Guide to Periodical Literature in your library? For decades, the Guide was the gold standard access point to US and Canadian magazines.

If you wanted to read all the article coverage of the lunar landing, for example, the Readers’ Guide would provide you with a list of citations across magazine titles, saving you the time of combing through each individual publication.

Library Named 'Bicycle-Friendly Business' by BikeDenver.org

Enter the secured employee bike room parking at the Central Library, and you'll understand how much bike commuting is part of the Library's culture. You'll find it packed with commuter bikes every day of the year.

Whether we're mopping our sweaty brows in the heat of the summer, or bundling up for our dark, cold winter rides, Denver Public Library employees LOVE being in the saddle.

Talk Like a Pirate Today...Speak Polish or Portuguese or Punjabi Tomorrow

Talk Like a Pirate Day

 

 

Library staff have been blogging in anticipation of International Talk Like a Pirate Day, which is celebrated every September 19th. Did you know the Library's language acquisition database, Mango Languages, features Pirate as one of the 60 language courses available to customers?

Attend our Research Skills Class for Adult Students

Bob Lawrence wins graduate award by NTU- Brackenhurst, Creative Commons licensed

The number of older students returning to school has been steadily increasing over the past decade. Students over the age of 25 now comprise 38 percent of the total college population, with that number expected to rise by 25 percent by 2019.

Our Reference Services department has certainly seen an increase in visits from non-traditional students. Library research has migrated to an online environment, and looks quite different than even ten years ago. Fear not! Students can rely on the library to help them navigate this new learning landscape. We have created a course on library research to provide adult learners with the skills they need to study more productively and research more confidently.

Little Free Libraries: Neighbors Creating Richer Communities

Our Little Free Library by Robin Filipczak

This spring, my family installed a Little Free Library in front of our home. Have you heard about these libraries? Founded in 2009, the Little Free Library movement seeks to:

promote literacy and the love of reading by building free book exchanges worldwide

build a sense of community as people share skills, creativity and wisdom across generations.

Owners can create their own library box or purchase one from Little Free Library and register on the organization's website. Library locations are then geolocated on a Google Map.

I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write (You) a Letter

Courtesy of donovanbeeson / Flickr / Creative Commons licensed

"Sir, more than kisses, letters mingle souls; for, thus friends absent speak." -- John Donne, in a verse letter to Sir Henry Wotton, written before April 1598.

I love the thrill of finding a hand-written note tucked into the interminable piles of junk mail that show up in my mailbox.

To prove it, I have 25 years of archived correspondence: postcards from around the globe, hand-made birthday cards filled with my sister's effusive love, even a tender billet-doux or two. These physical artifacts tie me emotionally and metaphysically to the people who have touched my life. April is National Card and Letter Writing Month, which gives us the perfect excuse to connect to those we care about through the written word.

Plant Your Seeds of Greatness...Act on Your Dreams and Ideas

Courtesy of StephenMitchell/Flickr, Creative Commons licensed

February is Plant the Seeds of Greatness Month, a campaign designed to encourage everyone to take steps to "remove barriers and make a change in your life for the better." Reflect on how you can make a difference for yourself, your family, your business, or your community. Then acquire the tools and skills you need to act on your ideas and dreams.

 

Planting the seeds of greatness aligns so perfectly with one of the Library’s strategic impact statements: “People’s lives are improved by acquiring the resources and skills needed to prosper and contribute...” If you are ready to sow the seeds of improvement and turn your goals into reality, the library has a useful collection of tools to help you succeed.

Library Classes and Appointment Services

Finding Sheet Music at the Library

Aïda in Full Score

With over 10,000 sheet music anthologies at the library, customers can find everything from Broadway show tunes to American Negro Spirituals, Irish street ballads to classical symphonies.

In theory, it’s a veritable treasure trove! In practice, any musician or musical director knows how hard it can be to locate a particular song within a universe of songbooks and score anthologies.

Library staff are always happy to play musical detective with you. But to search on your own, I offer you four tools for successful song sleuthing:

There's no debate...the Library has great resources

"Debate and Oratory," 1909 University of Washington yearbook, public domain

French essayist Joseph Joubert said, “It is better to debate a question without settling it, than to settle a question without debating it.” He understood that debate, forensics, and persuasive writing foster critical thinking skills, analytical self-reflection, intellectual curiosity, and a respect of difference.

Increasingly, students are being asked to justify, synthesize, and analyze complex issues into persuasive written and oral arguments. Assignments like these tie into the recently adopted Common Core Standards which “reflect... the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers.”

The library has both online and print resources to help students assemble research content, understand the mechanics of debate and persuasive writing, and polish a presentation.

Databases

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