Code Monsters: Computers and Social Emotional Learning at Skokie Library

2021-05-27T20:59:54-06:00

Before I get too deep into this post, I feel I must confess that there was a time in my life when I was a skeptic about gaming in the library. This skepticism was based on a number of misconceptions, the best of them being that nebulous old chestnut “you’ll rot your brain,” and the worst of them being that it’s a highly addictive, antisocial activity with little room for creativity. The latter opinion was loosely based on my own experiences obsessively squandering many a perfect summer day in pursuit of eight pieces of Zelda’s triforce. Not that there’s anything wrong [...]

Code Monsters: Computers and Social Emotional Learning at Skokie Library2021-05-27T20:59:54-06:00

(Resource List) do your :bit Challenge with BBC’s micro:bit

2021-04-26T09:59:26-06:00

do your :bit Challenge with BBC’s micro:bit – Link Bank Presenters Claire Ratcliffe Adams Space Science Institute cratcliffe@spacescience.org Brooks Mitchell Space Science Institute bmitchell@spacescience.org Webinar Recording: https://www.starnetlibraries.org/development/webinars/ do your :bit Challenge Resources do your :bit Challenge Description: https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/ do your :bit Activities http://clearinghouse.starnetlibraries.org/174-do-your-bit Circulation Kit Material List http://www.starnetlibraries.org/2020/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Microbit-Kit-Material-List.pdf Patron Instruction Sheet http://www.starnetlibraries.org/2020/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Patron-Instruction-Sheet.pdf U.N. Goal 3: Good Health & Well-being (with related activities) https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/global-goals/good-health-wellbeing/ U.N. Goal 13: Climate Action https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/global-goals/climate-action/ do your :bit Entry Form https://form.jotform.com/201812404053340 Micro:bit Resources BBC micro:bit: https://www.microbit.org/ United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development https://microbit.org/projects/do-your-bit/global-goals/introducing-the-global-goals/ Microsoft MakeCode https://microbit.org/code/ Free STAR Net Resources Join STAR Net: http://www.starnetlibraries.org/community/ STEM Activity [...]

(Resource List) do your :bit Challenge with BBC’s micro:bit2021-04-26T09:59:26-06:00

Learn to Facilitate Creative Learning in Public Libraries

2021-04-16T08:30:50-06:00

We’re excited to announce that the PLIX (Public Library Innovation Exchange) team is launching a four-week online course starting April 26th on the topic of Facilitating Creative Learning. This is a chance to delve into the facilitation side of creative learning, exploring some big ideas as well as practical tips around leadership and implementation of STEAM activities. PLIX connects public library professionals and MIT Media Lab researchers to co-design learning experiences, develop and share facilitation practices, and integrate creative learning into public library programming. PLIX strives to increase equitable access to and broaden participation in STEAM programming.  Recently, STAR Net met [...]

Learn to Facilitate Creative Learning in Public Libraries2021-04-16T08:30:50-06:00

Everyone Knows What Engineering is! – Right?

2021-05-28T21:40:37-06:00

We all know the word.  We hear it just about every day.  We see it all the time. Engineer The E in STEM, STEAM, and STREAM stands for engineering. But do we know what the word actually means?  What is engineering?  What do engineers do? Of all the letters in STREAM, I think the E has changed more than all the others, growing, evolving, expanding, adding dimensions and details.  I decided to spend some time exploring the meaning of the word engineering, the history of engineering, and just how much the work of engineers influences our day to day lives. Let’s [...]

Everyone Knows What Engineering is! – Right?2021-05-28T21:40:37-06:00

10, 9, 8, 7….3, 2, 1, Launch America!!!

2020-05-26T22:12:05-06:00

I hope everyone had a wonderful, safe, and socially distanced Memorial Day Holiday! Now to prepare for the historic event tomorrow that will mark the first launch of American astronauts into space in an American rocket from an American launchpad since the shuttle program was retired in 2011. The crew for this mission are Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley:                   They will be launching from Launch Complex 39A in a SpaceX Crew Dragon carried into orbit by a Falcon 9 rocket.  The lift-off is scheduled for 4:33 p.m. EDT, Wednesday, May 27. For special access to additional information, [...]

10, 9, 8, 7….3, 2, 1, Launch America!!!2020-05-26T22:12:05-06:00

Julie Andrews Reads Aloud and Remote Control BirdBrain Robots

2020-05-21T14:15:20-06:00

Hello again! I wanted to point out two online resources that I failed to mention yesterday. One is Julie's Library.   Julie Andrews and her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton have begun offering podcast storytimes.  I first knew of  Julie Andrews as the main character in the movie "The Sound of Music," but by the time she performed in that movie she was already famous.  She'd already performed in "My Fair Lady" and "Camelot" on Broadway, in "Cinderella," a made for television musical, and "Mary Poppins," on the big screen.  She has also written quite a number of noteworthy books for children, including: The [...]

Julie Andrews Reads Aloud and Remote Control BirdBrain Robots2020-05-21T14:15:20-06:00

Robotics With Cubelets

2019-10-03T18:32:04-06:00

  Over the last year or so, I've done a number of programs using Cubelets.  For anyone unfamiliar with them, they are cube-shaped modules that connect to one another magnetically to create 'robots.'  Each module has a single function.  There's a power Cube, that contains the rechargeable battery, and the On/Off switch.  The rest are divided into ' Sense Cubes,' 'Think Cubes,' and 'Act Cubes.' The Sense Cubes in the kit I have access to are modules that have light sensors, and distance (proximity) sensors.  The Power Cube is also the processor for the robot.  The action cubes include cubes with [...]

Robotics With Cubelets2019-10-03T18:32:04-06:00

Thank you, NASA

2019-08-22T19:05:06-06:00

I want to begin today by apologizing for having disappeared for a while.  My disappearance wasn't by choice, but sharing my story does give me the opportunity to celebrate NASA, and everything it has accomplished over the last several decades. So, for any one who is curious, here's the story of my spring and summer... I was going about my day to day business, and enthusiastically planning my summer programs (which were going to be really great, by the way), when I woke up bright and early one day, sat up, put my feet on the floor to stand up, and [...]

Thank you, NASA2019-08-22T19:05:06-06:00

Community Video Gaming

2019-03-26T13:47:28-06:00

Video games continue to be a source of community based learning and entertainment for youth and teens at Skokie Public Library. We have embraced this and provide multiple channels for youth and teens to participate either individually or as a group. But we really value group gaming as it supports collaboration, communication, and community, which are key 21st century learning skills. Here are a few community based gaming opportunities our gamers enjoy.   Minecraft Mania Teens play coop video games in The Lab. 21 Mar 2019 Minecraft continues to be the most popular game at SPL. Kids use library [...]

Community Video Gaming2019-03-26T13:47:28-06:00

STEAM Kits

2019-01-16T17:17:42-07:00

One way we promote self-directed STEAM learning at Skokie Public Library is through our STEAM Kit collection. We have about 30 kits that cardholders can checkout for one week at a time. Here’s how we create, circulate, and promote this specialized collection.   Kit Topics and Contents Our STEAM kits are carefully curated by staff in the Learning Experiences department. Often, kits are inspired by previous BOOMbox rotation equipment. We strive to pair hands on resources with books and DVDs related to the topic or concept. For example, our Makey Makey kit comes with a Makey Makey, related wire connectors, and [...]

STEAM Kits2019-01-16T17:17:42-07:00
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