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Weekly Shhhout-Out

Roaming librarians file dispatches from the world of information.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Among my fav stores to browse is Ranger Surplus, a store located in Rockville, "saving you money on surplus, survival and outdoor gear," its webpage brags. The selection of army/navy supplies are varied and interesting, reflecting past and present armed services gear...and it got me thinking of military science and history.

A weird Stream-of-Consciousness, huh?

Among MCPL's plethora of reading material, here are some titles to select from Said Subject:

* "Battle" by Richard Holmes. Call Number: J 355. This is part of the Eyewitness Series (if you're not familiar with these, you SHOULD be -- they're great!). Discover the weapons, equipment, and tactics used in conflicts throughout the ages. Great illustrations!

* "Ripples of Battle: How Wars of the Past Still Determine How We Fight, How We Live and How We Think" by Victor Davis Hanson. 355.02 HAN. The title says it all. :-)

* "The Roman Army: The Legendary Soldiers Who Created an Empire" by Dyan Blacklock. J 355 BLA. An illustrated history of the Roman Army, including information about its composition, organization, training, methods, weapons, and campaigns

* "Shades of Blue and Gray: An Introductory Military History of the Civil War" by Herman Hattaway. 973.73 HAT.

If you're interested in online resources, check MCPL's "History and Current Events" section under "Research a Topic." Databases are available focusing on American history, world history, African-American studies and opposing viewpoints on controversial social issues.

Despite the adage that "history teaches us nothing," an ocassional review of The Past may help guide us in (or guide us away from) certain actions in the future.

Happy reading -- happy learning!

POSTED: 7:16:00 AM |

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Parlez-vous Franšais? Learn Languages @ MCPL!

Love to learn a language but you don't have the time to take a class?  We've got great, free language learning tools! 


Try learning online with Mango Languages!  It covers more than 44 languages, plus English courses for speakers of over 13 languages.  Want to keep track of your progress? Just set up a user name and password in Mango.  Don't have time to sit in front of a computer?  We've got the Mango Langauges app that you can take with you!  Looking for something fun for your summer?  Try their popular Pirate course!  Aye, you'll love it matey!


Got kids?  Try Muzzy Online which is an interactive language learning tool for children.  It teaches 8 languages, including English, with animation and games.




Both our audiobook services, Maryland's Digital eLibrary Consortium/Overdrive and OneClick Digital, have downloadable language learning items.  OneClick Digital has a collection of the popular Pimsleur series.  Both audiobook services have apps as well.


Want to read a book in another language?  We have books in Chinese, French, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.  Find out which branches you can go to browse those books on our World Languages page.  These books are in our catalog so you can place holds on them and have them moved for pick up at the branch of your choice.


Looking to learn sign language?  We've got books and DVDs to learn sign language.  Our Sign Language page has some online resources you can use as well.


If you'd like to practice speaking English or Spanish with friendly people check out when our English Conversation Clubs and Spanish Conversation Clubs are being held.


Have fun and happy language learning!

CATEGORIES: Susan M. , Language Learning
POSTED: 11:40:00 AM |

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Random Thoughts

The dog days of summer are upon us and change is in the air so I'm finding it hard to focus.  Here are just a few of the things I've been thinking about this week.....

- I'm older than I thought.  Last weekend, I went to a Bowie Baysox baseball game and the Naval Academy freshman class was in attendance.  None of them sang along with Tom Cruise and Co. when the "You've Got That Lovin' Feeling" scene from Top Gun was shown on the centerfield scoreboard.  We soon realized that these kids weren't born until 1995 -- 9 years after that movie was released.  That also means no one in college these days was born pre-World Wide Web

- It's not too late to sign up for our Summer Reading Club.  The deadline for sign-ups is August 11.  Kids and teens welcome!  So far, our summer readers have read over 45,000 books!

- Have you seen our new look?  MCPL's new website has been launched!  Enjoy our sleeker layout, easy-to-find answers to our most asked questions, new branch homepages, and a complete listing off all the ways you can can keep up with your favorite library system (Facebook, Twitter, Ask-a-Librarian, Apps, and more)!

- All summer long, royalty from the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair have been visiting our branches, educating us about farm animals and the various art and craft exhibits.  Now it's time for the big payoff.  The 65th Annual Mongomery County Agricultural Fair kicks off this wFriday and lasts until August 17.  As their tagline goes, "There's plenty to see from A to Z!"

- Also next week, is the 17th Annual Comcast Outdoor Film Festival for NIH Charities.  This is year, the festival is housed at the MCPS Board of Education Building on Hungerford Drive in Rockville.  With the new location comes a new (or perhaps old?) way of enjoying the festival: Drive-In style!

CATEGORIES: Chris B. , Baseball , Events , Websites , Libraries , Summer Reading , Movies
POSTED: 5:44:00 PM |
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Last edited: 11/6/2007