Archive: Sep 2020
Teen Flash Fiction WorkshopLeave a Comment
All teens are invited to a Flash Fiction Workshop on October 5th at 4:00pm! You’ll learn the art of creating 3-sentence stories through writing exercises and you will even have time to workshop your own 3-sentence horror story idea for the library’s current writing contest. Teens aged 12-18 are welcome to sign up, which will be virtually conducted on Zoom. John, reference desk tech, at the Morgantown Public Library will be leading the session.
Register by October 4th at 4:00pm: https://forms.gle/68pExFpMtDYrvmBR7
Contest Details: https://www.mympls.org/upcoming_events/3-sentence-horror-story-contest/
Questions about the workshop? Email John at firstname.lastname@example.org
John is a Reference Desk Tech at the Morgantown Public Library. When he’s not writing fan fiction or working on his short story collection, he can usually be found buried in some horror and sci-fi book. He graduated from WVU with degrees in History and English.
1000 Books Before KindergartenLeave a Comment
Parents, have you heard of 1000 Books Before Kindergarten? The Morgantown Public Library is committed to creating lifelong readers from the start with a fun approach to establishing strong early literacy skills. The goal is to read 1,000 books (yes, you can repeat books) before your precious one starts kindergarten. With every 100 books read you will receive a prize and progress up the library’s achievement wall!
- Register online at (https://bit.ly/2GoJZlW) or in-person at any Morgantown Public Library branch location.
- Fill in a paper reading log (will be provided) or use the Beanstack App (mympls.beanstack.com) to record the books you’ve read.
- Every book counts. Even if your child wants to hear or reread the same book, you can count it each time. You can also include the books read during story time at daycare or preschool, just as long it was read in its entirety.
- When you’ve reached each 100-book milestone, bring in your reading logs and receive a prize and progress up our wall of achievement!
- When you’ve reached 1,000 books, you will enter the 1,000 Book Wall of Fame! You will even have a library book dedicated in your name so can inspire other readers!
Questions? Feel free to email us at email@example.com
Fact Checking Fiction: Presidential History Recommendations by NathanLeave a Comment
I’m not a huge fan of nonfiction, but I love learning about history. So, when I want to learn more about a historical topic, I try to find historical fiction books related to it that I can fact check with nonfiction sources as I go along. I generally try to find books that provide new, unique, or overlooked perspectives on the topic. With the election coming up, I thought it might be worthwhile to read some historical fiction about the United States’ presidents. Here are my top picks, along with some nonfiction sources to fact check them, some bonus reads, and where you can find them all.
- The General’s Cook by Ramin Ganeshram (Hoopla)
Summary: Cookbook author Ramin Ganeshram explores the experiences of President George Washington’s enslaved chef Hercules Posey in the years immediately prior to his escape to freedom in 1797. In doing so, Ganeshram offers a view of Washington’s life and term in office that is typically overlooked and yet invaluable to understanding the history of the United States and its first president. The research is exceptional. Ganeshram was even able to shed new light on the topic by locating Posey’s final resting place in New York, thus establishing definitively that he settled there after his escape.
Nonfiction Fact Check: In the Name of the Father: Washington’s Legacy, Slavery, and the Making of a Nation by François Furstenberg (Morgantown Public Library, WV Deli, and Hoopla)
Bonus Read: Martha Washington’s Booke of Cookery by Karen Hess (Consortium)
- Buchanan Dying by John Updike (WVNorLN Consortium)
Summary: Described by its Pulitzer-Prize winning author as a “play meant to be read,” Buchanan Dying serves as a window into the final thoughts of President James Buchanan as he lay on his deathbed in 1868. The play is meant to replicate the processes of a dying mind, with the central set piece of Buchanan’s bed providing a focal point for the constantly changing array of acquaintances and memories that approach the fifteenth president to plague him with regrets and recriminations in his last moments. It’s a technique that offers many poignant scenes, among them one in which Buchanan’s memory of the announcement of South Carolina’s secession from the Union in 1860 melds with that of the end of his engagement to Anne Coleman in 1819.
Nonfiction Fact Check: The Presidents’ War: Six American Presidents and the Civil War That Divided Them by Chris DeRose (WV Deli)
Bonus Read: Mr. Buchanan’s Administration on the Eve of the Rebellion by James Buchanan (Internet Archive)
- Savage Conversations by LeAnne Howe (Hoopla)
Summary: A book of slam poetry connecting First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln’s late-life hallucinations of being scalped by a Native man to President Abraham Lincoln’s decision to order the execution thirty-eight Dakota men in retaliation for the Dakota War of 1862. Howe’s poems delve not only into the Dakota War itself but the life of Mary Todd Lincoln and her relationship with the sixteenth president as well. More than anything, Savage Conversations is an exploration of the consequences that presidential politics have on a personal and familial level even decades after a president’s term has ended.
Nonfiction Fact Check: 38 Nooses: Lincoln, Little Crow, and the Beginning of the Frontier’s End by Scott W. Berg (Morgantown Public Library, Consortium, WV Deli, Hoopla)
Bonus Read: The Insanity File: The Case of Mary Todd Lincoln by Mark E. Neely, Jr. and R. Gerald McMurtry (Consortium)
- Empire by Gore Vidal (Consortium and WV Deli)
Summary: The fourth installment of Gore Vidal’s seven-book Narratives of Empire series, Empire can be read as a standalone novel of the United States’ first forays into becoming a global empire after the Spanish-American War in 1898. Presidents William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt figure heavily in the narrative, as do well-known characters from the period like William Randolph Hearst, John Hay, and Henry Adams. Vidal is well-known for his ability to explore the highs and lows of human character and motivation in his writing and this is no less true of Empire, which offers readers an unforgettable glimpse into the idiosyncrasies of our turn-of-the-century leaders.
Nonfiction Fact Check: The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire by Stephen Kinzer (Hoopla)
Bonus Read: Poems by John Hay (Consortium)
- White Houses by Amy Bloom (Morgantown Public Library, Consortium, and WV Deli)
Summary: A depiction of the undeniably romantic relationship between First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and Associated Press reporter Lorena Hickok, first uncovered by historians in the late 1970s. Bloom explores the nature of that relationship as well as its interaction with the life and administration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The story has particular relevance for readers in Monongalia County, since it was Lorena Hickok who initially drew Eleanor Roosevelt’s attention to the plight of coal miners in the Scotts Run area and set in motion the events leading to the creation of the community of Arthurdale.
Nonfiction Fact Check: Franklin and Eleanor: An Extraordinary Marriage by Hazel Rowley (Consortium and Hoopla)
Bonus Read: Empty without You: The Intimate Letters of Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok by Rodger Streitmatter (WV Deli)
- Watergate by Thomas Mallon (Morgantown Public Library, Consortium, and WV Deli)
Summary: Thomas Mallon is known for his high level of attention to historical detail and context as well as his fondness for including the perspectives of “bystanders” to history. This novel is no exception, detailing the experiences not only of figures like President Richard Nixon and Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt during the Watergate scandal but those of Nixon-familiars like Alice Roosevelt Longworth and Joseph Alsop as well. It’s a more sympathetic portrayal of the scandal than would have been written forty years ago, but nonetheless seeks to plumb the depths of presidential corruption and fallibility with an unwavering regard for the truth.
Nonfiction Fact Check: Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America by Rick Perlstein (Consortium)
Bonus Read: The Presidential Transcripts by the staff of the Washington Post (Aull Center)
Nathan is a staff researcher at the Aull Center for Local History, a division of the Morgantown Public Library System. He received his doctorate in history from The George Washington University and is a co-host with Mike McClung of Aull About History, a local history podcast produced in partnership with The Dominion Post.
Free Tutor Service!Leave a Comment
We just got the perfect Covid-19 back-to-school learning tool! Introducing tutor.com! 3000 tutors are online (2:00pm-9:00pm) to help your family one-on-one with homework, test prep, and job search skills. Select from over 250+ subjects, spanning from kindergarten to college, including adult learners and job seekers (https://www.tutor.com/subjects).
Chat with a tutor and even opt into a voice conversation. Each 20 minute tutor session can vary based on your need. For example, if you need help with writing, you can connect with a tutor 1:1 for help with brainstorming, create an outline or revision plan, correct grammar and punctuation OR you can just upload your assignment and have an expert tutor review your grammar, punctuation, structure, theme development, citations, and more!
There is NO COST to you. No need to download any plugins. It is done all through the website (https://www.tutor.com/morgantownpl/) All you need is a library card and internet access (all Morgantown Public Library branch locations have FREE WIFI inside the buildings as well as in the parking lots.)
How it works: https://www.tutor.com/cmspublicfiles/WWW/HiW_Guide_2019_FORM.pdf
Moms Support GroupLeave a Comment
We are thrilled to announce our first Virtual Moms Support Group on Monday, September 21st! We want to offer a safe virtual space every other Monday from 8:00pm – 8:45pm for moms in the community to find encouragement and share resources. Families are facing unprecedented times with the arrival of a pandemic and its effect on social behaviors, educational experiences, and personal health. The goal is to remind families they are not alone.
Register by 12:00pm on Sunday, September 20th: https://forms.gle/jJJ7Kqd54onqjrV48
To provide safe and private virtual gatherings, Zoom links will be emailed prior to each meeting and participants will need to register each week. When you register, you will have the opportunity to submit questions weighing on your mind and other topics you’d like to see covered. The structure of our meetings will depend on what YOU want to talk about. Additionally, to keep discussions manageable, we are limiting participants to 20 individuals.
Support Group Rules:
- This is a safe space. No mom-shaming.
- Listen to understand.
- We want to keep our group free from advertisements and solicitations. If they are not relevant to the conversations or helpful resources, we ask that you refrain from sharing.
- Admins reserve the right to remove members at any time.
Questions? Email Corina Chang at firstname.lastname@example.org
Teen Fandom GroupLeave a Comment
Fans of Hamilton, the Musical! The library is starting its first Teen Fandom Support Group and this month we’ll be sharing our love of Hamilton over Zoom on September 17th at 4:30pm.
What is your favorite Hamilton song? What do you like most about the Musical: the characters, the raps, or the history? If you want to break out in song, we’re not going to stop you! In fact, we’ll start the soundtrack and sing with you!
Come gab about it with your peers from the comfort and safety of your home. The goal is to provide teens (ages 12-18) in our community a safe space to talk about their passions while following social distancing guidelines. Each month we’ll have a different fandom topic planned. So be on the lookout!
Register by September 16th at 6:00pm: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/16eYTA9wIaA3qHTKDSl9MP1pgk6h3sxLIoTnpyv6lpF8/edit?usp=sharing
Need more inspiration for the meeting? We have compiled a list of recommendations: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MdRzNzF-68kAniHwmBTHzc_9v6NNsbKaS2mEc7xljr0/edit?usp=sharing
Story Time and Activity KitLeave a Comment
Stop by and pick up your own FREE activity kit at the Morgantown Public Library for this week’s virtual story time with Ms. Sharon!
Limited to 25 kits– these are first come first serve at the front desk. These kits are designed for children ages 2-5 and are based off of this week’s story, “How Do Dinosaurs Go To School? ” by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague.
Join Ms. Summers this Saturday on Facebook Live (https://www.facebook.com/MorgantownPublicLibrary) at 1:00 pm to listen to the story and complete the activities with her!
What you’ll find in the kit:
–1 Foam Visor
–10 Foam Dinosaur Stickers
–1 Sheet of Colored Paper
–1 Dinosaur Paper Cutout
–1 Dinosaur Count Activity
We’ll have another activity kit next week so be on the look out!😃
Paper Bracelet Take-Home Craft (Teens and Adults)Leave a CommentMake art you can actually wear! 15 kits are available for pickup at each branch location. Be sure to register by September 20th on our online form (https://forms.gle/i5knLxG5KaHgJLnp7) or call the Cheat Area Public Library at 304-594-1020 to reserve your kit.Each kit will have all the materials you’ll need to create your own paper bracelet along with a set of instructions.You also will have a chance to meet other crafters like yourself, get additional help, and show off your finished bracelet on September 30th at 6:00pm in an optional Zoom chat. More information to come when you sign up!
We Have WIFI!Leave a Comment
Need WIFI for your back-to-school virtual classes?
In addition to our FREE WIFI hotspots located at all library branch locations (accessible from the parking lots or inside the buildings), we have reinforced our WIFI offerings with a dedicated WIFI account just for kids, courtesy of the “Kids Connect Initiative” (https://wvde.us/potential-wifi-access-locations/).
Whichever you are most comfortable with, whether accessing the internet in our buildings or in the parking lot, get some fresh air and get productive! Happy first day of school!
Teen Anime/Manga ClubLeave a Comment
Calling all teens (ages 12-18) that love anime or manga! Whether you are a seasoned fan or thinking about diving into the world of Japanese anime, this virtual gathering is just for you! For this month we’ve planned 1) a “take and make kit” that you can pick up at the Morgantown Public Library, downtown branch, and later in the month 2) a Zoom call to meet others in the club.
Sign Up Today (Deadline: September 14th at 12:00pm): https://forms.gle/C1DDj3Xj498VoByL7
In your “Take and Make Kit” you’ll find your favorite Japanese snacks and a Japanese lantern craft kit with all the supplies and instructions. These are available beginning September 8th till September 15th. Remember, you must be registered to receive a kit.
Later in the month, join us on Zoom on September 15th at 4:30pm to meet other enthusiasts. We’ll be discussing your favorite anime/manga as it relates to this month’s theme: apocalypse and post-apocalypse. Need ideas? Feel free to peruse our recommended reading/watching list (https://bit.ly/3i14oLV)
Questions? Feel free to reach out to Amanda at email@example.com