Friday, April 29, 2016

Asian American & Pacific Heritage Month Programs

中文讀書會 Chinese Book Discussion:

Group of books on endCome discuss Chinese literature (written in Chinese) at this new Silver Spring Library program.  The first meeting is Thursday evening, May 5 at 7:00 PM.  Participants will discuss Daughter's Taiwan, Father's China by Chen Hao.   Customers can visit the 3rd floor Customer Service Desk to check out copies while available.  At the end of the meeting, there will be a tour of our new library building and our world language collections.


書名: 女兒的台灣,父親的大陸 作者: 陳浩

Our second meeting is June 2, when we will discuss Start from the Heart by Chen Yueqing.

書名: 從心開始,每天清除心靈癌細胞

Silhouette of tai chi pose

Tai Chi Demonstration & Workshop:

Join us Saturday, May 14 from 3:30 to 4:30 PM. Tai Chi Master Chung-jen Chang, who has taught Tai Chi for more than 30 years, presents a program for ages 14 and up.  Master Chang has won Grand Championship titles and also consulted on the Pushing Hands movie directed by Ang Lee.  Master Chang will demonstrate the unique Chen Style Small Form and Big Form, Tai Chi push-hands, Tai Chi sword and Yang style Tai Chi.  

Monday, March 21, 2016

Digital Media Lab and 3-D Printing

MAC ComputerSilver Spring Library now has a Digital Media Lab.  What does that mean?  The Digital Media Lab is a creative and learning space with 7 MAC computers where customers can use advanced software to design, develop and innovate.  Computer coding? Yes.  Digital Photography? Yes. Animation?  Yes.  Web pages?  Yes.  And much more.  These aren't the computers you use just for email.  Come with your creativity.

Some of what's available:
  • Adobe Creative Suite includes InDesign (publishing software), Illustrator (graphics editor), and Photoshop (picture editing software)
  • Garage Band (helps create music and podcasts)
  • iMovie (video editing software)
  • Cura (3-D printing design software)
  • Xcode (coding software for Apple)
  • GitHub (coding software)
For individuals, lab computers are available on a first come, first served basis.  All Digital Media Lab users must be 14 or older, complete a user agreement, and have a valid library card in good standing. Teen volunteers are available most days after 3:00 PM to assist customers in the lab.

You might want to get ready to use the lab by taking some of the classes offered on Gale Courses which are available through MCPL.  Free courses in web design, digital photography, graphic design, and the Adobe Creative Suite are available. All you need is a library card.

Toy and light switch examples of 3-D printing

3-D Printing is the process of making a three-dimensional object from a digital design file. Successive layers of material are laid down until an object is complete.  Each layer is a thinly sliced cross-section of the object.  Customers must agree to the 3-D user agreement and submit a 3-D Printing request.  A $1.00 fee is charged for each file submitted along with a charge of 5 cents a gram for the filament used. The library uses Printrbot Plus printers with PLA (polylactic acid) filament, which is recyclable and biodegradable.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Lego Weekends

It is so much fun to walk out onto the 5th floor of the new Silver Spring Library on weekends and see, first thing, children and parents hard at work -- usually together -- building free form with Legos blocks.  The creations are truly inspiring...and imaginative.  Barring space conflicts, Legos are available for play Fridays after 2:30 PM, as well as Saturdays and Sundays during library hours.

The children are usually energetic and talkative, often building together with parents.  It is so much fun to see the children using their imaginations not only to invent the structures, but also the play-along story scenarios to go with them.  And when playtime is finished, there's time for checking out books, some, of course, on ideas for building with Legos.

One recent weekend in the early evening, Mr. V. Kuroji Patrick and family stopped by to build and also created a short stop-gap animation that they agreed to share with us. Take a look:

Monday, January 4, 2016

Playing Games

NonTraditional Board Games Logo
Tired of playing all the old classic board games? While Scrabble or Monopoly or Scattergories are great fun, why not try the NonTraditional Board Games meetup at Silver Spring Library? This is a gathering for adults who enjoy a challenge, social interaction, and plain old fun. The organizer, known as "Adam Dork," sets up a different theme or free-for-all twice a month.

On one recent Saturday afternoon it was all about "Traitor-Mechanic" games. Players try to accomplish something in these various games, only to be undermined by a player with a hidden identity or agenda. So far, the group has tried various game genres: competitive, nothing but dice, no dice, space, world domination and more.

Boxes of board games on a table
Check out the next meetup Saturday, January 16 at 2:00 PM and meet some other board game enthusiasts. See the Silver Spring Library calendar of events for more information and future meetups.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

"Around Town" in the Children's Room

Children's Room end panels
reflect a storybook village
"Around Town" is the design theme for the children's room at the Silver Spring Library.  Now that many new artist-created end panels for our bookcases have been installed, the 5th floor really does reflect the liveliness of downtown Silver Spring and its surroundings creating a more distinct sense of place and identity.  The end panels are also an homage to the library's location within the Silver Spring Arts and Entertainment District.

On one side of the children's room is an array of enlarged photographs of Silver Silver Spring landmarks, buildings, and urban spaces.  The pictures will no doubt be familiar to many.  The views are from many perspectives and are infused with a soft but urban light.

Bookcases with photographs of
Silver Spring landmarks
Find the library lion. Find Acorn Park.  Find the Discovery Channel building, the Majestic Theater, and more.  Come in to see what locations you can identify.

On the other side of the room, where younger children search for picture books, simple frame houses and buildings evoke a storybook town.  Together with the tall towers of our Early Literacy Center, and skyscraper book display shelves, imagination is encouraged.