By Amanda Hughes, Assistant Manager of the Maryland Department
The academic year is in full swing and all across the state hundreds of middle and high school students are beginning work on exciting year-long projects that will culminate in a national competition. National History Day is a historical original research competition that draws students from all 50 states plus many US territories to compete in College Park, and our hometown Maryland students always perform well. The local and statewide competitions are administered by the Maryland Humanities Council, who partner with libraries, archives and historical societies throughout Maryland to bring resources and materials to Maryland students.
As you or your students begin work on this project, the Enoch Pratt Free Library is here to help. This year’s theme is Breaking Barriers in History and Pratt is here to help students with topics, research, sources, formatting and editing projects. Many of our librarians serve as judges at the state and national competitions and we are always happy to share our insight. At the Central Library, there is help and resources to be found in every department and 1 – on – 1 appointments with librarians are available to both teachers and students. Our librarians are always available to present our resources to classes and libraries throughout the state and classes are always welcome to come and see our collections in person! Research classes are also available at our neighborhood branches, with more dates to be added.
The Enoch Pratt Free Library was founded on the principle that libraries “shall be for all, rich and poor without distinction of race or color.” Over 100 years later, that statement still stands. We at the Pratt believe in access for all so when that access feels like its being threatened, we feel compelled to let you know.
One of our most popular materials, eBooks, may soon be harder for libraries to provide. Starting November 1, Macmillan Publishers will allow libraries to purchase only ONE copy of each new eBook title for the first EIGHT weeks after a book’s release.
The Pratt and libraries all across the country have the purpose of providing services, forms of entertainment and of course, spreading knowledge. Limiting the amount of eBooks we can purchase for those in our communities goes directly against that.
What does this mean
It will be harder for the Pratt and other libraries to purchase new books for you to read. We’ll have fewer eBooks in our library so you will have to wait longer to read highly anticipated books. The embargo means that all of our 22 locations will have to share ONE eBook for the first 8 weeks.
What can you do?
Weigh into the conversation. The American Library Association has a petition going on here. Please consider signing it. Also, consider making you voice heard by using social media.
You can learn more about the #eBooksForAll campaign visit here and here.
Trick or Treat, Give me something good to eat read!
The summer heat is finally chilling off and autumn is here. That means something really exciting… Halloween is right around the corner. Celebrate the frighteningly fun day with one of these spooky and thrilling books.
By Lauren Read, Business, Science, & Technology Librarian
October is Health Literacy Month, and this post serves to highlight mental health, which often is given shorter shrift. October 10th’s commemoration as World Mental Health Day has sparked further interest in exploring and sharing the topic.
The 2019 theme of World Mental Health Day is “Working Together to Prevent Suicide.” Suicide is an astounding public health issue. No demographic is immune to depression and its effects, and the statistics are most harrowing for young adults. About 50% of suicide attempts involve major depressive disorder; 90% involve some diagnosable (and treatable) psychiatric disorder.
If this information has gotten you concerned, the good news is that there is plenty to do about it. Recognizing and treating (with or without pharmacology) depression and poor mental health is key. Building and maintaining personal connection and relationships can make the difference between feeling supported and seeming utterly alone. So whether you are in need or know someone who may be, regular communication makes all the difference. Be a life-line and potentially save a life!
The Pratt has a substantial research guide for Senior Mental Health Awareness in particular. Of course, we have numerous books and other materials that cover mental health and suicide prevention. Pennsylvania Avenue Branch has an upcoming program for men and for women with expert-facilitated conversations on living with mental illness. And – not to be understated – increasing one’s social capital through the human connections fostered in “third places” such as the library is always a good thing. Be well.
Heritage Month continues! Here’s a look at some of the latest books to hit our shelves
from Hispanic and Latinx authors. Hope you enjoy these picks.
¡Los títulos más populares continúan llegando en el Mes de la Herencia Hispana! Aquí un vistazo a algunos de los libros más recientes de autores latinoamericanos que hemos recibido en nuestros estantes. Esperamos que disfrute de esta selección.