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New! Mango Languages for free and easy foreign language learning

Ventura County eLibrary has added Mango Languages to its list of customer resources.  Mango is an easy and effective way to learn to speak a foreign language and is available in two versions:

Mango Basic:  Perfect for a foreign language beginner, Mango Basic teaches everyday greetings and helpful phrases in a short period of time.  The courses, which require only two to five hours of time to complete, are currently available in 22 foreign languages and 14 English as a Second Language (ESL) courses. 

Mango Complete: Mango Complete offers a 100-lesson course that digs much deeper and is designed to provide a more complete understanding of the entire language and culture. It is available in nine foreign language and three ESL courses.

Cinco de Mayo!

Cinco de Mayo celebrates the victory of a Mexican army over a French army at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. The battle was fought after Emperor Napoleon III of France sent troops to take over Mexico. The French army was better armed and three times as large, but the Mexican army won anyway.¹

How do you celebrate Cinco de Mayo? Will you find a book to read? (Dewey 394.262) Cook a Mexican meal? (Dewey 641.59) Find a website with Cinco de Mayo games and crafts? Have fun!

¹"Cinco de Mayo." World Book Kids. World Book, 2010. Web. 30 April 2010.

May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month is observed nationally to recognize the contributions people of Asian and Pacific heritage have made to American culture.

Enjoy exploring websites that explain the significance of the monthAsian American History (take the quiz), along with biographies of notable Asian Americans and more. Don't forget, you can use our eLibrary resources too!

Earth Day!

Celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day!

World Book Student tells us Earth Day "is an annual observance, held on April 22, to increase public awareness of environmental issues. Each year on Earth Day, millions of people throughout the world gather to clean up litter, to protest threats to the environment, and to celebrate progress in reducing pollution."¹

Reduce waste? * Earth friendly crafts? * Explore nature? * More earth friendly crafts? How will you celebrate Earth Day?

¹Hayes, Denis. "Earth Day." World Book Student. World Book, 2010. Web. 16 April 2010.
Graphic: Photobucket - lulinhapato10

Tax Day - April 15th


Find links to California and Federal Tax Forms in our eLibrary!

 

April is Poetry Month

Maybe you know: April is National Poetry Month!

Check out your Library's Dewey 811.54 shelves or take a gander at our eLibrary Literature databases: Literature Resource Center, LitFinder and the literature links in Gale Virtual Reference Library. Don't miss out on alternative forms of poetry: haiku, rhyme, song, prose poetry and hymns, to name a few.

And for fun, why not sneak a peak at Crayola.com's Calendar activities to celebrate National Poetry Month?

National Library Week - free databases!

 Celebrate National Library Week by exploring additional, FREE databases offered by vendors:

Gale, one of our major vendors, offers the widget below to gain free access (this week only) to:
  * Archives Unbound — cross-searchable digital collections of historical documents
  * Career Transitions — a new electronic resource offering a comprehensive guide to career change
  * Global Issues in Context — global news and perspectives on issues and events of international importance
  * GREENR (Global Reference on the Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources) — authoritative reference content on the environment, energy, economic development and natural resources 
  * Grzimek's Animal Life — an interactive, media-rich online resource, with information on more than 4,000 species

Another major vendor is ProQuest - by visiting their Celebrate National Library Week link, you can explore free access to:
 * CultureGrams™ - explore the world's cultures with local experts
 * ProQuest eLibrary® - subjects from millions of multimedia-rich, global resources. [Try it out!]
 * ProQuest® African American Heritage - brings together records critical to African American family history research
 * ProQuest Historical Newspapers™ - Black Newspapers experience history firsthand via continuous runs of the following full-image titles: The Baltimore Afro-American, Chicago Defender, Los Angeles Sentinel, and New York Amsterdam News

Last but not least, H.W. Wilson offers Careers - from their Current Issues database series. Careers offers a wide array of information on diverse careers in a single vetted source.

We hope you enjoy the free information!

Don't forget to celebrate your Library this week!

Feedback to your Web Librarian is always welcome.

Health and Healing

This week is National Public Health Week and Wednesday, April 7th, is World Health Day. Ventura County Library offers you many online health resources: our Need More Info About ...? page lists Health Information Sites and our eLibrary page offers Health & Medicine resources. Plus, you can always browse the non-fiction shelves at your local library!

National Public Health Week is a time for us to celebrate advancements in public health and assess our Nation’s and County's public health status.  The theme this year is A Healthier America:  One Community at a Time. Take a moment to view the County's Public Health Department's APHA video inviting us to change our health status in one generation.

Springtime in Ventura County

California Poppies in Thousand Oaks by Kyle DensonAccording to World Book Student, the vernal equinox occurs on March 19, 20 or 21 and marks the beginning of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere. Here in Ventura County, Spring might start wet, but warms into Summer in a very temperate and colorful manner!

Are you seeing more wildflowers? Ventura County Library has books on identifying and growing all sorts of plants. For native wildflower guides, see Dewey 582.13; for gardening with natives, see Dewey 635.9 or check with the California Native Plant Society.
Photo credit: Kyle Denson

Daylight Savings Time (DST)

Daylight Savings Time (DST) begins the second Sunday in March and ends on the first Sunday in November. According to World Book Student, the chief purpose of daylight saving time is to save energy by reducing evening use of lighting.¹

Wikipedia calls DST "controversial" and cites its origins in ancient civilizations' adjustment of schedules to sunlight. See the results of our poll!

Benjamin Franklin is often quoted as favoring daylight saving time in summer. It struck him as silly and wasteful that people should "live much by candle-light and sleep by sunshine."²
¹Petrie, Joanne. "Daylight saving time." World Book Student. World Book, 2010. Web. 12 March 2010.
²Waldstreicher, David. "Franklin, Benjamin." World Book Student. World Book, 2010. Web. 12 March 2010

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