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New Program: Memorial Park Library Art Circuit

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

This summer, a new program was launched at the library - Memorial Park Library Art Circuit! It was a great success! This program is an extension of the already existing Art Circuit program at the Central Library and takes place on the first Thursday of every month. It begins at the Memorial Park Library and continues along Fourth Street. The program offers library patrons a look inside the neo-classical interior of the Memorial Park Library as well as commentary on the monuments that are located in Central Memorial Park. In addition to this, library patrons are given the opportunity to experience the whimsical art that can be found along Fourth Street. The tours are guided by volunteer(s) who have an interest in art. All of the art pieces are explained in detail with commentary on the meaning of the artwork as well as background information about the artist.

“I never noticed any of the art pieces before although I have been to the Lilac Festival several times”. Oftentimes, the intricate beauty of public artwork gets overlooked. Either the artwork blends in with its surroundings, or it goes unnoticed due to the busyness of everyday life. Another gentleman noted, “Hundreds of times I walked by much of the art on 4th Street, and did not appreciate, let alone notice, all that was there”. Likewise, patrons visit the Memorial Park Library everyday without sometimes realizing the cultural and historical significance of the building and the surrounding park. Such artwork, buildings, and monuments reflect and reveal our community and as a result, add meaning to our city. The Art Circuit program allows us to slow down and appreciate the beauty and significance of arts and culture in the Calgary community.

If you are interested in volunteering for the Art Circuit program please visit our website to learn more about this interesting opportunity.

Volunteer Spotlight: Rachelle Namak

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

Rachelle is a recently-retired Calgary Public Library staff member and is one of Calgary Public Library’s wonderful volunteers! Rachelle volunteers with “Conversations in English”, helping develop the speaking skills of a library staff members on a one-on-one, volunteer-to-staff basis. Rachelle was instrumental in the creation of the program and has been an amazing advocate since the first matches began in December 2013!

Rachelle’s experience as an educator coupled with her warm personality and wonderful sense of humour make her an ideal candidate to bring out the best in her matches. She uses a wide variety of techniques to get her matches talking, helping them become comfortable in every topic under the sun, from work to movies to everyday life in Calgary. Rachelle has gone above and beyond the call of duty, taking on several matches at two different libraries!

One of Rachelle’s matches has this to say: "Rachelle has helped my English since January this year. She is very smart and patient. I brought up the topics to discuss each time. Talk to her seems to talk to an old friend. She is very kind person and generous. She encourages me to learn from my mistakes. I am so happy to be her student and her friend as well."

Says another of Rachelle’s matches: Rachelle is a very nice lady. She is always positive and enthusiastic, and a true friend. I have learned a lot from her. She has taught me far more than English in our sessions. Every time after our meeting, I have become more confident in my social skills which has helped me integrate into Canadian society. I am so thankful to her not only as my English tutor, but as my liaison to Canadian society. I really appreciate all the time and support she gives to me. Thank you, Rachelle."

Rachelle has proven time and time again her commitment to English language learners, and her impact on the lives of those she works with is so important.

Thank you Rachelle for everything you do!

Kayci graduates from the TD Read With Me program

by Katie R - 4 Comment(s)

“It’s helped me a lot in reading. It’s made me more confident reading in front of people and my reading comprehension is way, way better. I also have the joy of reading now, whereas when I was younger, it was something I had to be forced to do. Now, I can read anything I want, without having to struggle. I feel comfortable with Cheryl. She’s not just a tutor- she’s a friend now too. She’s fun, has good humour, and she puts up with a lot (well, me Smile). She’s patient and will help me through mistakes, and in learning new words.”

Strong, positive (and humourous) feedback offered by Kayci, who’s been working with her volunteer, Cheryl Gibeault, in the TD Read With Me program at Calgary Public Library since March 2009. They currently comprise the longest-standing match in the program. For five years, the pair have met for an hour a week at their community Library, to read together and build Kayci’s literacy skills. Kayci graduated from the program at the end of June 2014.

That’s bittersweet for Kayci’s parents, Corri-Lynn and Brad, who are sad the program doesn’t continue beyond Gr. 6: “This program has been such a blessing and so helpful for our kids. They’ve benefited from good mentorship, found a love of reading, and there’s a genuine connection that forms between the volunteer and child. It’s just been a positive experience for our family.”

Cheryl emphasizes that the benefits flow both ways: “I’ve loved working with Kayci. What’s not to love about her? She’s a sweetheart! We’ve had laughs, and it’s really rewarding to see ‘the light bulb go on’. She’s super-cooperative, and Brad and Corri-Lynn have been very supportive. One-on-one is the ideal teaching situation, in that you can work at the pace of the student.”

Congratulations, Kayci, on all your hard work, over so many years! And thank you, Cheryl, for your commitment and dedication in volunteering with such competence for so long for Calgary Public Library!

Check out Freegal

by Stephen - 0 Comment(s)

Freegal

This week the Calgary Public Library went live with Freegal, a digital music provider which allows patrons to access three hours of streaming music every day and download three free songs every week (resets Sundays at Midnight). The great thing about the download option is that you get to keep the songs!

The music collection is amazing, with about 7 million songs from 28,000 labels which includes same-day as street-date releases for new artists as well as classic content in over 100 genres. So whether you’re a big fan of Soul, Salsa, Swing, Schlager… or Sound Effect…? Freegal has you covered!

If you’re in a country mood for some reason this week, Freegal offers classics such as Johnny Cash, Hank Williams and even Johnny Cash singing Hank Williams. Also available are Shania Twain, Carrie Underwood, Jason Aldean, and one of my personal favourites, Canadian alt-country act, The Sadies.

To get started with Freegal check out our how-to page and enjoy!

Take the Library on your Summer Vacation

by Lorrie - 0 Comment(s)

Travelling with your family by plane, train or car is always an adventure. I have always relied on the library for travelling material whether it’s a book or e-book to read in the airport or music and books on CD to pass the time in my car.

When my two boys were small we often rented a cabin in B.C. and to pass the eight hours to get there we would load up on book CDs like Robin Hood Crusader or Giants a Colossal Collection of tales and tunes, it was preferable to have a story with giants but really any adventure story would do. That was more than a few years ago but the library still has the tools to make an eight hour trip not feel like 16 hours. The kids e-library has loads of stories, games and activities to keep kids occupied and they might just learn a few things.

If you have more than one child it may require multiple devices or a little bit of compromise. It is nice when you can find a story, game or activity that the whole family can enjoy. The classic folk and fairy tales are always a good start, Jack the Giant Killer was always a favorite.

If your child is enrolled in an immersion program at school the kids e-library has Muzzy Online an animated language learning course for children in seven languages plus English. Encyclopedie Decouverte World Book kids en francais and Enciclopedia estudiantil Hallazagos World Book Online kids in Spanish both are excellent resources to help kids learn a second or third language or just keep their current skills sharp.

When kids are first learning to read it can be a struggle to keep them reading over the summer. The e-library has lots of games and activities to help the most reluctant of readers stay engaged. Bookflix and Pebble Go will keep them happily reading and playing vocabulary games. Of course some parents will have the opposite problem trying to keep their kids supplied with enough books because they have an avid reader. Luckily the library has books and e-books for the whole family including Mom and Dad.

While at the cottage we quite often found the need for some good nonfiction books like a good birding book, Birds of North America Western Region and the kids always needed a book on insects to identify all the creepy crawlies they find in the woods or on the beach.

Fishing is another popular activity summer activity and it is usually a good idea to identify that fish you just caught. Some fish can only be caught at certain times of the year so it maybe handy to have a book on identifying fish such as Fish of Alberta by Amanda Joynt.

Zinio will keep you supplied with the latest magazines and Hoopla will keep you supplied with music and movies. It is going to be a very busy summer at Calgary Public Library!

 

Hoopla Is Here

by Pam - 0 Comment(s)

hooplaHoopla is here! With your Calgary Public Library card you can borrow a wide array of music albums, movies, television programs and audiobooks.

What's on hoopla? You'll find over 100,000 full length music albums from a wide range of music labels. Whether you are interested in Neil Young's "A Letter Home", Rascal Flatts' "Rewind", the Black Keys "Turn Blue" or the latest Coldplay album release you are sure to find something to tempt your musical palate. Most albums are released onto hoopla at the same time as the CDs. Check out the New Music Tuesday category for brand new releases. What a great way to keep up!

You can expect to see wide variety of previously released popular movies like "Angela's Ashes", documentaries like "Gasland", foreign films, artistic independent films, and hard-to-find titles. There's a wide variety of exercise and fitness shows in addition to French, Chinese and Spanish films. For the little ones there is a great selection of children's movies such as "Casper's Scare School". I'm going to revisit some good memories this evening with "ET: the Extra Terrestrial".

If you are looking to catch up on old favorites from television, try hoopla. With programs ranging from "Here's Lucy" to "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" and "Strawberry Shortcake" there is lots to choose from. Hoopla allows you to borrow stand-alone episodes so that you can watch a program at your own pace and in whatever order you choose.

Audio books round out hoopla content. Over 8,000 audiobooks offer some great features including bookmarking and sleeptimers so that you can savor the audioooks at your leisure. "Divergent" by Veronica Roth and "The Finisher" by David Baldacci are on my favorites list - waiting to be borrowed when I am ready.

Browse through the categories - "New & Notable", "Top Titles", and "Just Added" or take a trip through the many genre categories. You can also use the extensive search feature if you have a particular title in mind. From kids to adults, hoopla is a treasure trove.

With your library card you can borrow up to 12 items a month. The loan period for movies and TV programs is 3 days, music albums - 7 days and audiobooks - 21 days. While you can't permanently download items, you can watch or listen to them as many times as you want during the loan period. All hoopla items are simultaneous use - no waiting. Once the loan period has expired, it disappears from your device.

It's easy to register for a hoopla account with your Calgary Public Library card. Find out what the HOOPLA is all about!

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