Friday, April 25, 2008

How Do You Write :)

According to AP internet writer Anick Jesdanon, two thirds of teens use emoticons and informal styles in their writing.

How about you?

The Pew Internet and American Life Project, in a study released Thursday found non-standard elements in assignments were much more noticeable in those who used social networking sites.

What does this mean?

Failure to use proper capitalization and punctuation, 38 percent carry short cuts in instant messaging over to their assignments.

Do you think rules will change completely in a generation or two?

How much do you write by hand?

The study found that the computer generation is shunning computer use for most assignments. Almost 2/3 of teen typically do their school writing by hand. And for personal writing outside, long hand is even more popular--the preferred form for nearly 3/4 of teens.

Based on article NY Times April 24, 2008

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Earth Day

Recycle Your Computer for a Greener Tomorrow
April 22nd, 2008 will mark the 38th anniversary of the first Earth Day--April 22, 1970. For those of us old enough to remember, the first Earth Day was celebrated with spirited walks and demonstrations across our country, accompanied by promises to clean up the Earth. My first exposure to saving the environment was after reading Rachel Carson's Silent Spring. All of my friends walked the streets picking up litter and other debris. We were enthusiastic in our part to clean up the Earth. Over the years since, I have been a faithful recycler at home, separating paper trash from recyclable items, turning off lights when not in use, and keeping the heat to a minimum whenever possible during the winter months. But, back in the 70's, I didn't own even one computer, let alone several, and, like many of you, I'm now faced with the issue of what to do with old, out-of-date computers. It doesn't take a degree in environmental science to figure out that disposing of your old computer at the local dump is probably not the best idea. So, what to do? Well, here are some suggestions for those of you who, like me, remain passionate about preserving the Earth.

* Check with local non-profit groups in your community. Only good for computers with life left in them, charitable donations are a good way to give back to your community while taking care of Mother Earth. For profit, Staples in New Milford will take your old computer for $10.

* Check with your computer's manufacturer.
Many major manufacturers--Dell, Gateway, HP, and Apple for example--offer free or low-cost recycling programs.

* Check with your local environmental group. New Milford Recycling has special days to collect hazardous waste, which are posted well in advance.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Calling all Harry Potter fans!

"Want to get your (gloved) hands on J.K. Rowling's The Tales of Beedle the Bard? wants to send you and a friend to London, England to spend a weekend with the rare and delightful book of fairy tales (security guards included, of course), handwritten and illustrated by J.K. Rowling herself. Open to muggles ages 13 and older in 24 countries, the Beedle the Bard Ballad Writing Contest challenges you to creatively answer one of the following three questions in 100 words or less:
• What songs do wizards use to celebrate birthdays?
• What sports do wizards play besides Quidditch?
• What have you learned from the Harry Potter series that you use in everyday life?

English-language submissions will be accepted through 11:59 p.m. PDT April 22, 2008. An committee will select 10 semi-finalist submissions (based on creativity and writing style) from each of two age categories: 13-17 and 18-and-over. customers will determine the two finalists and Grand Prize winner by voting for their favorites. The Grand Prize includes round-trip airfare, two nights lodging at a London hotel, as well as an expense allowance. Plus, each of the finalists from the two age groups will receive an Amazon Gift Certificate in the amount of $1,000." (From the website).

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Science Fair Ideas

It's that time of year. Need some help with your project? Here are some recommended links Newton's Apple Science Try Its. These fun project ideas require that kids get hands-on. Science Buddies is a real treasure for teacher resources. To find them, click on the teacher's lab at the top of the home page. Science Fair Project Resource Guide was created by librarians and is a classic among science-fair veterans. Guidance found here is designed to lead kids step-by-step through the process of selecting a topic, doing a project and creating a fair display. ZOOMsci has simple science experiments that are ideal for elementary students and teachers seeking in-class projects.

Dragon Slippers

I have just finished a children's/young adult fantasy called "Dragon Slippers.

A lifelong reader and writer of fantasy fiction, Jessica Day George studied at Brigham Young University where she enjoyed classes in pottery-making and Old Norse, and dutifully forced herself to sit through biology and math. Originally from Idaho, and having briefly lived in Delaware and New Jersey, she now resides in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband, their young son, and a five pound Maltese named Pippin. Dragon Slippers is her first novel for young readers.
Many stories tell of damsels in distress, who are rescued from the clutches of fire-breathing dragons by knights in shining armor, and swept off to live happily ever after.

This is not one of those stories.

True, when Creel’s aunt suggests sacrificing her to the local dragon, it is with the hope that the knight will marry Creel and that everyone (aunt and family included) will benefit handsomely. Yet it’s Creel who talks her way out of the dragon’s clutches. And it’s Creel who walks for days on end to seek her fortune in the king’s city with only a bit of embroidery thread and a strange pair of slippers in her possession.
But even Creel could not have guessed the outcome of this tale. For in a country on the verge of war, Creel unknowingly possesses not just any pair of shoes, but a tool that could be used to save her kingdom…or destroy it.
This is a good first novel. One that I and the other staff members who read could not put down. Jessica Day George's sequel to Dragon Slippers will be out in April

Brigham City Carnegie Library