The Birds and The Bees

Photo by GeorgesPerret / CC BY-ND 2.0
Photo by GeorgesPerret / CC BY-ND 2.0

Tuesday, April 26th at 7pm (Middle School Registration)

Amanda Romaniello, LPC from Mental Health Services of Fairfield LLC, will help moms and dads prepare to have a frank discussion on “the birds and the bees” with their child. 

 

 

App Reviews: Coding!

Image from the Foos website
Image from the Foos website

There's been a lot of interest in coding recently, and our iPads (Early Literacy iPads and Tween Tabs, which you can check out for a week) reflect that! Here is a list of our coding apps.

Early Literacy iPads (for K-1)

Daisy Dinosaur By Hopscotch Technologies
A very basic drag-and-drop introduction to visual programming. Teach Daisy to dance in her happy and bright world.
 

The Foos By codeSpark
This game was developed to support Hour of Code, the global campaign to teach coding to all kids. In the Foos, the logic of programming is taught through visual blocks of code that look like drag-and-drop coding puzzles. It looks very cartoony, and the puzzles are story-based. No reading is necesssary.

 

Tween Tab (for 8-12 year olds)

Hopscotch by Hopscotch Technologies
Create mini-games, art, minecraft remakes, and even websites using code. Kids will learn abstraction, variables, conditionals, loops, and more.

Kodable by Surfscore Inc
A game that teaches coding basics, and then lets users create games with what they know. It also comes with curricula and parent guides.

CodeAcademy by CodeAcademy
Complete this app, and you will know coding basics. Then, CodeAcademy offers free video tutorials to take you to the next step. Part of the Hour of Code initiative.

Lightbot Hour by LightBot Inc.
Another Hour of Code game, Lightbot is a programming puzzle that teaches kids concepts used in computer programming. And, it was created by an undergraduate student! The challenges ramp up really quickly, so it's good for older kids.

Cargo-Bot by Two Lives Left
36 puzzles in a deceivingly simple game that teaches that working solution may not be the optimal solution (just like in coding).

Tech Series Week 6: Hack Your Life: 3D Printing (Continued)

Continued from here.

Many websites - like LifeHack.org, Instructables.com, and DIYGenius.com - serve readers by providing creative solutions to everyday problems. You just need to know where to look! Life hacks are all about using what you already have to enrich your life in a new way. Annoyed that your keys always go missing when you get home? Maybe you could use an old spoon to create an ingenious key rack by your front door.

The idea that we can “hack our lives” has gone so far there there is now a TruTV show titled Hack My Life, which chronicles the ways we can tackle problems with a bit of ingenuity and some elbow grease. Their Tumblr is full of user-submitted hacks for common problems, like “put dry tea bags in smelly shoes” and “use recycled toilet paper rolls in a shoebox to keep cords untangled.” Genius!

The 3D printing industry is also a huge player in the “hack your life” realm. Recently, a team of designers and educators embarked on a mission to 3D print huge statues of Buddha which were destroyed by the Taliban in Afghanistan. A New York City-based doctor, Dr. Faiz Bhora, recently developed a method to 3D print windpipes which, with the ability to 3D print with stem cells, would serve as a way for patients that have suffered lung disease to receive a transplanted trachea. Currently, windpipe transplants are nearly impossible and most patients receive a breathing tube instead.

There are hundreds of ways that ordinary folks – like us! – can use a 3D printer to change our lives. For instance, you can recycle an old jam jar into a mug with a nifty 3D printed handle.

We encourage you to explore the ways you can use 3D printing to change your life through Thingiverse. Take a look at other ingenious 3D print hacks. If you find something incredible to print, book the Darien Library’s Digital Media Lab to 3D print your object and feel proud of your ability to hack your life.

Like what you see here? Sign up for tech emails and we will send you one email a week through March 14.

*Want to learn more about a technology topic and we don't have a book on it? Request a technology book purchase.

Tech Series Week 6: Hack Your Life: 3D Printing

Hack your life: make a duct-tape lunch box.
Hack your life: make a duct-tape lunch box.

Like what you see here? Sign up for tech emails and we will send you one email a week through March 14.

Many people hear the word “hack” and think of evil computer coders, not unlike the daredevil computer geniuses in the 1995 thriller Hackers. “Hack” is a multipurpose word with scores of definitions, but for our sake its primary meaning is “using one’s skill to refine something.” In this way, we are using the word “hack” positively – to “hack” or adjust your life for good.

Learn more about how to hack your life.

Missed last week's email? Read Tech Series Week 5: Maker Movement

Read Tech Series Week 4: Wearable Health Tech

Read Tech Series Week 3: Online Privacy

Read Tech Series Week 2: Screen Time and Your Family

Read Tech Series Week 1: Digital Darien

*Want to learn more about a technology topic and we don't have a book on it? Request a technology book purchase.

New T|E|A Room Activities!

TEA Room activities - get them while they're hot!
TEA Room activities - get them while they're hot!

We have two (and even more than that) new activities in the T|E|A Room for you to check out. So come book the room for an hour (more on that here) and explore:

- littleBits (electronic building blocks!)

- Tinkerbots Wheeler set (build a car and control it with an app)

- Artstraws

- Kaleidoscope Making

- TP Shooters

- and more!

St. Patrick's Day Crafts

Thursday, March 17th from 4-5pm

Join the Children's Librarians for a special drop in program featuring crafts celebrating St. Patrick's Day. Ages 3 and up. Open.

Women's History Month Film Festival

Join us in March to celebrate Women's History Month
Join us in March to celebrate Women's History Month

March is Women's History Month, and in honor of notable women throughout history we will host a special Women's History Month Film Festival. We will screen films celebrating historic women and girl empowerment. View the list of films below.

Brave: Friday March 25th at 2 p.m.

Determined to make her own path in life, Princess Merida defies a custom that brings chaos to her kingdom. Granted one wish, Merida must rely on her bravery and her archery skills to undo a beastly curse.

(Running time 93 minutes, Rated PG). Watch the trailer.

Tech Series Week 5: Maker Movement (continued)

Families
Families "making" and playing with cardboard during our Maker Day, 2014.

Continued from here.

A great way to keep track of and get inspiration for all your DIY/Maker projects is to pin them on a Pinterest board. Pinterest allows you to put all of your projects into categories that you can save for later. Inspiration can be found anywhere and with all of the advancements in technology inspiration can be found at your fingertips.

Join the Maker Movement by picking up needles, Arduino boards, yarn, or anything, and infuse making into your world by checking out a Makerfaire, selling your goods online or visiting the Darien Library's T|E|A Room or Digital Media Lab (DML).

Like what you see here? Sign up for tech emails and we will send you one email a week through March 14.

*Want to learn more about a technology topic and we don't have a book on it? Request a technology book purchase.

Tech Series Week 5: Maker Movement

Families
Families "making" and playing with cardboard during our Maker Day, 2014.

Like what you see here? Sign up for tech emails and we will send you one email a week through March 14.

The Maker Movement really came on the scene around 2005. Most likely originating in California's Silicon Valley, the Maker Movement gained momentum from individuals who worked in tech jobs by day but wanted to create something of their own away from work. They used their backgrounds in technology to "make" from leftover art mediums, circuit boards, computer parts - whatever they could get their hands on. Now, making has become so popular that many of the earliest and most popular projects have become open source. Project kits can be purchased from maker-inspired companies like ADA Fruit and Makershed.

Learn more about the Maker Movement...

Missed last week's email? Read Tech Series Week 4: Wearable Health Tech

Read Tech Series Week 3: Online Privacy

Read Tech Series Week 2: Screen Time and Your Family

Read Tech Series Week 1: Digital Darien

*Want to learn more about a technology topic and we don't have a book on it? Request a technology book purchase.

Java Coding for kids

Tuesdays in March (Registration is for every Tuesday class)

March 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th at 4:30pm-5:30pm.

 

Learn the programming language Java. Registration is for all four weeks of class. Ages 9-12.

 

Registered. If this form is no longer accepting submission, please register for the waitlist.

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