When we first learned we’d be hosting the Explore Space exhibit from STAR_Net at our library this fall, we spent quite a bit of time browsing through program ideas and how-tos as we started to formulate our program schedule. Each month at our library, we offer an elementary-age STEAM program called Be the Scientist--and we knew we wanted the fall 2017 programs to tie into the exhibit and space in general. When we found the Jump to Jupiter program plan, we knew we’d found something that would work for our community. We tweaked the program to fit--literally--at our library, and named [...]
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So far Amy Koester has created 5 blog entries.
As summer comes to an end and many of our patrons are busy on vacation or getting ready to go back to school, we were eager to offer quick access to STEAM opportunities. One of our favorites is Sharpie Tie-Dye; it’s a low-cost experiment that takes just a few minutes but has a big impact in helping participants to gain scientific knowledge. Here’s what we did. We first offered Sharpie Tie-Dye in the BOOMbox, Skokie Public Library’s STEAM learning space, and then created a to-go version to use on our Bookmobile this summer. We used small squares of neutral, natural fabrics [...]
Here at Skokie Public Library, one of our favorite seasonal recurring events is our Stargazer Night program. While we first started these all-ages programs in the spring of 2015 in conjunction with an exploration of microcosms and macrocosms in our BOOMbox, we’ve continued offering 5 or 6 of these programs each year. Here’s what we do. Families take a closer look at Jupiter and its moons during Stargazer Nights. First, we choose our dates for Stargazer Night programs. We check a local sunrise/sunset schedule so we know what months might be viable for a program. We’ve tended to find [...]
Multi-day activity camps made a reappearance at Skokie Public Library during the most recent school break. For 15 kids in grades 3-5, that meant an opportunity to learn the basics of coding with Ozobots and Ozoblockly in a three-day Robot Dance Boot Camp. The premise: spend two hours on each of three consecutive days learning the basics of coding, then apply that learning to create a program for the Ozobot to “dance” to a song. The central challenge was to choreograph a routine for the Ozobot, which is just a dance- and music-specific way of thinking about the challenge of writing [...]
Our library recently hosted the traveling exhibit Exploring Human Origins, which came to Skokie from the Smithsonian Institution through an ALA grant. In addition to the exhibit itself, we hosted a number of programs for all ages to engage in the topic of humans and evolution. Our cornerstone youth event, for kids in third through fifth grade, focused on exploring tools and the brain. Here’s what we did. To kick things off, we started with a conversation about human brains and our ancestors’ brains over time. The Exploring Human Origins exhibit came with replicas of skulls from the human family tree, [...]