Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Librarians on Horseback

In the 1930s, many people living in isolated communities had very little access to jobs, let alone a good education for their children. In Kentucky, they had isolated mountain communities which could only get their books and reading material from one source… librarians on horseback.
President Franklin Roosevelt was trying to figure out a way to resolve the Great Depression of the 1930s. His Works Progress Administration created the Pack Horse Library Initiative to help Americans become more literate so that they’d have a better chance of finding employment. History Daily

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Future Library

Sodden with rain and standing amid the calf-high shoots of 1,000 newly planted pine trees in Oslo’s Nordmarka forest, Margaret Atwood is revealing the title of her latest work. “It’s Scribbler Moon,” she says. “And that’s the only part of it you will know for 100 years.”

The young trees surrounding her will grow to make the paper her work will be printed on in a century’s time. Over the next 100 years, 99 more authors – one a year – will contribute a text to the Future Library, as Scottish conceptual artist Katie Paterson has called her project.

“There’s something magical about it,” says Atwood. “It’s like Sleeping Beauty. The texts are going to slumber for 100 years and then they’ll wake up, come to life again. It’s a fairytale length of time. She slept for 100 years.” The Guardian — Future Library 

Monday, November 6, 2017

Self-help book titles turned into art

Copenhagen-based artist Johan Deckmann examines the complications of life through clever titles painted on the covers of fictional self-help books that appear to tackle life’s biggest questions, fears, and absurdities. A practicing psychotherapist himself, Deckmann thoroughly recognizes the power of language in therapy and possesses a keen ability to translate his discoveries into witty phrases. “I like the idea of distilling words to compress information, feelings or fantasies into an essence, a truth,” he shares. “The right words can be like good medicine.” Colossal

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Fake News Machine

Veles used to make porcelain for the whole of Yugoslavia. Now it makes fake news.
This sleepy riverside town in Macedonia is home to dozens of website operators who churn out bogus stories designed to attract the attention of Americans. Each click adds cash to their bank accounts. money.cnn.com

Monday, September 18, 2017

World Renowned Laurie Halse Anderson Visited Shorecrest

Anderson has just concluded her The Seeds of America trilogy — a New York Times bestseller and National Book Award Finalist — about a girl who is born into slavery just before the American Revolution, is promised freedom, and then kept in slavery. The first book won the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical fiction.

Friday, September 8, 2017

The Library of Congress is Collecting Memes as Folklore.

...one of the most salient features of meme-making is that it tends toward self-reflexivity. Take the example of the distracted boyfriend meme, which recently exploded throughout the Twitterverse. Its early instantiations told simple stories about objects or ideas that catch our eyes when we should be paying attention to something else. As its star rose, however, online wags began using it to comment on the popularity of the meme itself.

This sort of meta-commentary is part of the internet’s lifeblood: a temporary brake on its ever-accelerating pace that encourages us to look back at the terrain we’ve just torn past. When we share such memes, we’re laughing at ourselves, but we’re also striving to make sense of where we’ve been and where we’re going. In that sense, the internet isn’t just a venue for the creation and circulation of folklore; it’s also a proving ground of folklore studies, with or without the imprimatur of academic authority. Hence the Library of Congress’ decision to include sites such as Know Your Meme, which as Blank puts it, “bring the focus onto what folklore is all about.” Slate Magazine, Photo Credit

Monday, June 5, 2017

State Maps Give Us Insight — Sort Of?

Did you see this map circulating on Twitter? There are some embarrassing insights:
Why are so many Rhode Islanders trying to spell "liar"? How can it be that people in New Jersey can't spell "twelve"? And really, New Mexico: "banana"?
Perplexingly, the word for which Wisconsinites most often need spelling help is: "Wisconsin." NPR
Don't get too alarmed — the map below points out (with humor) to consider the information offered in a different light. xkcd.com

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Read Books You Hate?? Yes!

It’s about finding a book that affronts you, and staring it down to the last word.
At a time when people are siloed into narrow sources of information according to their particular tinted worldview — those they follow on Twitter, the evening shoutfest they choose, AM talk radio or NPR — it’s no surprise most of us also read books we’re inclined to favor. Reading is a pleasure and a time-consuming one. Why bother reading something you dislike?
But reading what you hate helps you refine what it is you value, whether it’s a style, a story line or an argument. NY Times   Illustration credit Matt Chase

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

We Have A Winner!

The golden pencil rolled out of the pencil dispenser on May 2. Balloons dropped, confetti flew, horns trumpeted and our lucky SC student won a free print card.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

High School Student Power

In Kansas, a student newspaper is being praised for its hard work in reporting that Pittsburg High School's newly hired principal had seemingly overstated her credentials. The principal, Amy Robertson, has now resigned, after the paper found she claimed advanced degrees from Corllins University, an entity whose legitimacy has been questioned. NPR
Those teenagers were able to do that work because of a state law enacted in 1992 that offers K-12 students protection, in addition to the First Amendment, from administrative censorship. But not all student journalists in the country have such protection. Washington Post

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Take a Learning Myths Quiz

This blog post has some pretty useful information. So print it out; get out your highlighter and take off the cap.

Ready? Now throw it away, because highlighters don't really help people learn.
Got a minute? Go to NPR and take their learning myths quiz. You might be surprised and learn more effective studying techniques. Image from Boston Globe

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Taking the leap to self publishing.

Teens Can Write, Too! Founded in September 2011, Teens Can Write, Too! (TCWT) is a blog dedicated to supporting and encouraging teen writers. As of August 2015, TCWT has officially closed down. Still, they have four years of archives behind them, and will be useful to any newcomers.

ePublishing + school classes In some high school classes, teens are becoming published authors through self-publishing projects. Smashwords working with Los Gatos (CA) Public Library and Los Gatos High School published an electronic poetry anthology. Physics and engineering teacher Bryan Holmes has been advising a handful of students this year on a self-publishing project at Ridgefield High School in Connecticut. U.S.News

Open Call for Young Adult Short Story Submissions Wanted: short stories for realistic teen fiction anthology, On The Edge of Tomorrow. Submissions open through April 30, 2017. All short stories should be a minimum of 1,500 words and a maximum of 7,500 words. For a complete list of guidelines, including manuscript submission guidelines, please visit http://www.bhcpress.com and click on 2017 Anthology Submissions.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Fake News?

IFLA has made this infographic with eight simple steps (based on FactCheck.org’s 2016 article How to Spot Fake News)  to discover the verifiability of a given news-piece in front of you.  Download pdf of poster

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

KCLS Partnership

King County Library has created special student accounts for all Shorecrest students so you may seamlessly log in from school, home or from any computer or device.

Easy to Remember
  • account number:  412 + student ID number
  • pin number:  last four digits of your student ID number
Seamless Access 
Without needing a physical card you can access the following...
  • Homework Help from Live Tutors
  • eBooks, audiobooks, videos and even magazines and newspapers to download to your computer or device
  • Premium databases with info you can’t just find through Google
No Fines or Fees
Because it’s access to electronic materials it won’t be necessary to track due dates.

Go to https://kcls.org/middle-high-school-students/ to start.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Loland Self-Published

"He is a lethal assassin with a conscience. A meticulous contract killer who accepts no payment. Working with patient precision and careful planning, he is a hitman who takes lives for the benefit of society by targeting criminals who have managed to avoid capture and punishment...."
There’s a new novel in the thriller genre entitled Axman which is available on Amazon, and is written by — our own Lane Loland!