Friday, April 22, 2016

A Towering Achievement

Greg and Luke's winning tower! (with brother Nathan)

Olney's first annual Cup Tower Challenge was an overwhelming success! More than 30 kids and adults took up the challenge to build the tallest tower within 30 minutes—using only plastic cups. They worked in teams and used their STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) skills to build soaring creations. Check out all the photos at this link.

A young boy and two girls stand beside a tower made of red plastic cups. The youngest girl wears a cup on her head as a pretend hat.
Forbes, Adaora and Goldie's pyramid structure. Nice hat!

There were rectangular, circular, and pyramid-shaped constructions that reached more than 7 feet high!  The winning tower was a creative combination of pyramid and spire, built by Greg (age 14) and Luke (age 9). For the 10-minute "speed round," Melanie and dad George's circular tower edged out other designs to take home the winning prize!

A great time was had by all. Look out for our next Cup Tower Challenge this summer!

Melandie and dad George stand proudly beside a cyndrical tower made of red plastic cups.
Melanie and dad George conquered the speed round with a cylindrical tower.

Youngsters Hina and Farah add the last few red plastic cups to their tower.
Hina and Farah work on their towering creation.


Saturday, March 19, 2016

Always Something New at the Library (on our shelves....)

Where can I find a copy of a current best seller, when ALL catalog copies are checked out and there’s a long “holds” list for the book?

By visiting Olney Library’s “New Books” section! Among the new books are books with red labels. These are special copies of popular titles that are not listed in the catalog. If you see a red label book on the shelf, it’s yours to check out. To make them available for as many customers as possible, these red label books are limited to a 3-week checkout period (with no renewals), and holds may not be placed on them.

Example of a red label book

You will also find blue dot books in the New Books section. Holds may be placed on these books. These may be checked out for three weeks, and renewed up to three times, as long as there are no holds on the title.

Blue dot books, along with red label books

There’s a New Books area in every MCPL branch. At Olney Library, the New Books are shelved just past the Checkout Desk. Like other sections, New Books are organized by Fiction (shelved by author’s last name); Non-Fiction (Dewey decimal call number); and Biographies/Memoirs (subject’s last name).

Volunteer Stefani in front of the New Books section

Please stop by regularly to check out recently-returned best sellers, such as

·       John Grisham’s Rogue Lawyer

·       Sue Grafton’s X

·       Paula Hawkins’ The Girl on the Train

·       Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale

·       Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me

·       Daniel James Brown’s Boys in the Boat

·       and many more

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to call us at 240-773-9545 or stop by the Information Desk. Happy Reading!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Best Gift Ever Writing Contest ... Levi Shares His Story

Thank you to all the young writers and artists who contributed to the Olney Library Holiday Writing Contest. Congratulations to Levi Leder, age 9, who contributed the winning story, below. Levi is a student at St. John's Episcopal School in Olney.

The Best Present I Ever Received Was...
by Levi Leder
The best present I ever received was something I had been asking my parents for, praying to God for, and even wishing every birthday for for at least five years.  Finally, I got it.  It came just in time for Christmas, and it arrived wrapped in a soft, pink blanket. 
          "A baby sister just for me!" I happily squealed when my parents brought her home for the first time.  "Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
Levi holds his baby sister
          My sister was very tiny.  Her head was about the size of a grapefruit, her eyes were blue (unlike mine), her fingers were smaller than French fries, and her feet felt like squishy marshmallows.  She had very little hair on her head, and her eyebrows seemed practically invisible on her face.  I wasn't sure if that's how all new babies generally looked, but it didn't really matter to me. She was pretty darn cute (like me) and definitely more interesting and entertaining to watch than any show on television! 
          True, I did receive a very cool Star Wars robot and an awesome remote control laser tank, as well, for Christmas.  While I still really enjoy playing with these new toys, I know I'll eventually grow tired of them.  I'll never get bored of my baby sister, though.  In fact, every day since she came home, I've noticed something new and different about her.  She never fails to amaze me at how fast she's growing and changing.  I'm sure one of these days when I'm looking at her to see what's different, she'll surprise me by blurting out her very first words, "Hello Levi!"
          Before my baby sister arrived, I was the youngest.  I've always looked up to my older brother and sister, and I still ask them for help with my homework.  Now, finally, I'm not the youngest, and I'll have someone looking up to me for a change and asking me for help with her homework.

          This Christmas was the best one yet, and I must say, I'm a pretty lucky and happy older brother!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Spend Fridays with the Lego Construction Crew

On several recent Friday afternoons, clusters of junior engineers created buildings, machines, and vehicles--all from legos! Volunteers and parents helped out, but kids were the principal architects of these fantastic creations.

Thinking like an engineer... will this creative design remain standing?

The Lego Construction Crew meets every Friday (when the library is open) from 3:30 - 5:00 pm. We'll supply the Legos, you supply the imagination!

To see more photos, please click hereWe can’t wait to see more Lego fans join our weekly crew!

Thanks to the Friends of the Library, Olney Chapter, for helping to make this program possible.

Library Advisory Committee member Walter Lee helps this youngster start building a jeep

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Olney Reads....Primates of Park Avenue

Reader:  Carol, Olney Library Staff Member
Book:  Primates of Park Avenue by Wednesday Martin

You'll notice I'm not touching this book.  That's because it's too hot to touch.  Made it difficult to read, but read it I did! What is so hot about Primates of Park Avenue?  Well, author Wednesday Martin exposes the inner workings and secrets of the rarified world of Upper East Side Manhattan. It's driven, grueling, and competitive.  And that's just making sure you're dressed up to snuff to drop your little one off at preschool.

The author does all this with the keen, observant eye of a social researcher.  Ms. Martin has a degree in Comparative Literature with a strong background in Anthropology.  She moved to the Upper East Side for several reasons, not the least of which was the educational opportunities for her toddler.  Initially she fails to find a pride to be accepted into.  Ms. Martin uses a  very creative strategy to help her succeed in her new jungle. Using her anthropological training - she basically handles matters Jane Goodall style.  You've got to do what you've got to do!  

But then, as often happens, real life intervenes, and a crisis ensues.  People whom you thought couldn't or wouldn't - can and do come through.  Primates of Park Avenue was by turns touching, insightful, and hilarious.  Bring on the Baboons of Beverly Hills and the Gorillas of Greenwich!