Upcoming Holiday Closures:
Monday, December 24 & Tuesday, December 25 - All locations closed
Tuesday, January 1 - All locations closed
A helpful guide to searching the catalog and finding a book at the Main Library.
Last time I told you a little bit about how the Dewey Decimal System works. So now it’s time to figure out how to use the library catalog, and the Dewey Decimal numbers, to find a specific item on the library’s shelves.
You can always ask a librarian for help, but if you want to search for items on your own here are the basics of finding things in the library:
1. Search the online catalog.
I’m not going to go into a lot of detail about how to search, but if you need help with this part someone at the reference desk will be happy to help you.
2. Find the item you want, make sure it's the right one, and figure out where to look for it.
Some basics to get started with OverDrive, OPL's largest eBook and eAudiobook collection.
OverDrive is OPL's largest collection of eBooks and eAudiobooks. Here are some tips to get you started. Please ask any librarian for help!
- Do you know that you can limit your search to ONLY find available titles and in titles in particular formats that work best with your device? Click on the "Advanced Search" option in the upper right side of OPL's ePort page to use various drop-downs and check boxes to limit your results. You might need to scroll down a bit to get to all the various options - especially if you're using a phone.
- With eAudiobooks in particular, it's tricky if you're using a computer to get titles on your iPod or other iDevice. If you use a Mac, you can download and transfer only MP3 format titles but if you use a PC, you can download and transfer both MP3 and WMA format titles. Either way, you'll need to download the free software, OverDrive
Q&A: As Children's Librarians, it's our job to answer questions from children, parents, caregivers, and teachers. Part four puts the focus on the one person in the family who doesn't enjoy reading.
Q: I love to read, my older son loves to read, but my daughter hates it. How can I get her as excited about reading as the rest of us are? I’d be happy if she read anything, but she’d rather do anything else than read. I bring home stacks of books, and she rejects them all. When she’s tested, she can read, but she won’t do it. She’ll start a book, and abandon it. Help!
A: It may be time for a reading intervention if your child consistently answers “What do you want to read?” with; “I don't.” Emergency measures are needed!
It sounds like you did just the right thing with one child, but it's not working with this one. I'm going to suggest that you put aside your expectations about your family's reading characteristics and take some time to observe this child as if you hadn't really done that before. It might help to think of yourself as a personal assistant rather than a parent, teacher, or friend when it comes to reading.
Pick up recipe books and other titles to celebrate National Nutrition Month!
March is National Nutrition Month, a campaign of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This year’s theme is “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right”, because healthy eating doesn't mean you have to sacrifice flavor. The Alameda County Food Bank is posting recipes that are healthy and delicious and various tips on nutrition and healthy eating on its Facebook page. We have a number of recipe books for both adults and kids to encourage healthy eating habits at the library, including fun titles like "The monster health book : a guide toeating healthy, being active & feeling great for monsters &
Books for Wider Horizons - Expanding the library beyond its walls.
Every week about 60 dedicated volunteers read to children in 40 preschools in Oakland. They have been trained, tested, and sent forth to share their joy in language and literature with some of Oakland's youngest children.
These wonderful folks have committed themselves to a pretty rigorous schedule. They spend more than 20 hours over a period of two weeks in training. Then, once they are ready, we ask them to read 30 minutes a week at a Head Start or other preschool. That may not sound like a lot of time, however most volunteers spend hours choosing books, songs and fingerplays the children will enjoy.
One of our volunteers has been with the program for almost twenty years, as long as Books for Wider Horizons has been in existence. Others take on multiple time slots, because they love it so much. Several manage to fit their storytime reading into their lunch break. Others are retired
It's time for spring planting! Check out our collection of gardening books to help plan your garden.
It's nearly spring and if you're a gardener that means time for spring planting. Although we haven't had much rain this year, that doesn't mean you have to forgo your garden. Oakland Public Library has many books featuring drought tolerant plants as well as books written specifically for Bay Area gardening by local gardeners and urban homesteaders.
If you're new to gardening or have questions about planting, The Alameda County Master Gardener's website is a great place to find information, including a monthly planting guide. The USDA PLANTS Database is also a useful resource and includes information about plant classification, as well as plant sheets and fact guides.
And don't forget that the Chavez and Dimond branches both have seed libraries where you can check out
Playing with shapes will help babies learn to identify alphabet letters. This will, in turn, lead to learning how to write and even how to read better.
The skills needed to learn how to read and write are connected in children's brains. In order to ready your child for reading, try some of these easy and fun writing activities:
FOR BABIES: Of course your baby is not ready to read or write just yet, but learning to recognize shapes is the first step towards acquiring those skills. So point out different shapes you see and describe them to your child. Find things that are round, such as balls, and let your child explore them. Boxes are all around you; let your child play with a cardboard box and talk about squares and rectangles. Playing with simple shape and color puzzles will also help develop these skills.
FOR TODDLERS: Keep playing with shapes but also have fun introducing alphabet letters. Toddlers love hearing their names, Expand the sound of your toddler's name by writing it on all sorts of
Meet a star from Disney on Ice, and visit the Chabot Space and Science Center's Star Lab, this week at the Melrose Branch.
Have you visited the Melrose Branch? This week might be the time.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014 - 2:00pm - 2:45pm, come to the Melrose Branch to meet a star from "Disney on Ice presents ROCKIN' EVER AFTER." One of the stars of this production will be making a stop to greet you, on the way to the Oracle Arena for their evening performance.
File your federal taxes online and securely for free!
It's tax season, and we are offering free tax help at Main (and other locations), as in prior years. This year, the IRS is also providing some help in the form of software called Free File, which lets you prepare and e-file your federal return for free if your income is under $58,000/year. If your income is higher, you can still use free fillable forms online. Join the 33 million Americans who have used this service and saved money!