The Great Backyard Bird Count in Roland Park

On Saturday February 17, six teens came to the Roland Park Branch to look for birds. They were participating in the Great Backyard Bird Count—an annual event coordinated by the Audubon Society and Cornell University that invites people from around the world to report which birds are in their immediate area on a single weekend. Professional scientists then use those reports to track things like migration patterns and changes in bird populations.

Roland Park’s teen ‘Citizen Scientists’ saw thirty-nine birds over the course of ninety minutes. They also used field guides and an app on the Branch’s iPad to identify six different bird species. Afterwards, Teen Librarian Alex Lawson submitted those observations to Cornell’s online database so that they’ll be available for use by birders and scientists.

The teens enjoyed bird-watching—they were always competing to see who could spot a bird first. They were also excited to know that the work they were doing was part of a larger project run by professional scientists. That, plus some hot chocolate, made the time fly by on a cold morning.

Check out more teen programming #atthepratt and sign up for our email list to find out about programming for all ages.

Learn A New Language for Free from Home

Access Rosetta Stone Library Solution for free with your Library Card

Are you looking to learn a new language? Do you want to brush up on your ESL learning?  Going on a vacation and need to learn some key phrases? The Rosetta Stone Library Solution is an effective, easy-to-use program that allows you to learn a new language on your own time, at your own pace.

Rosetta Stone offers the proven immersion method that more than 22,000 schools and 12,000 businesses have trusted for over 20 years. This award-winning interactive approach has been used by millions of learners around the world and is now accessible in the library — or anywhere, anytime.

Content Includes:

  • 30 languages on 5 learning levels to meet a range of cultural interests & needs
  • Core lessons to build reading, writing, speaking & listening skills
  • Focused activities to refine grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation & more
  • Access from any web-enabled Mac or PC, in any browser
  • Mobile apps that enable learners to reinforce language on the go

Check out for more information.

Award-Winning Books at the Pratt

Just last week, the American Library Association announced the new winners of the Youth Media Awards.

Now you can reserve your copies of the award-winning books at the Pratt. Just click on the cover.

2018 Caldecott Winner

2018 Newbery Winner

2018 Coretta Scott King Winner

2018 Pura Belpre Winner

And… for the Young Adults..

2018 Printz Winner

2018 Stonewall Winner

2018 Morris Debut Winner

2018 YALSA Nonfiction Winner

Sneak Peek at the Second Floor

The Central Library is closed this week, but we’re giving you a sneak peek inside.

We are right in the middle of the Central Library’s historic $115 million renovation.  Starting February 20, you’ll start getting a look at the work that’s happened when the 2nd and 3rd floors open.

Several public service departments that are currently on the first floor will move to the second and third floors.  Here are a few pictures of the second floor to give you a preview.  New light fixtures line the 2nd floor hallway.  The paintings on the ceiling have been restored.  At the end of the hallway, you’ll see a large glass wall with a door.  That’s where the new Teen Wing will start in 2019, giving young adults their own space.  That space will temporarily house the Children’s Department as downstairs is now under renovation. 

Scaffolding remains up outside the front window.  This area on the 2nd floor will provide places for people to plug in their laptops or work on tablets.  The Poe Room and Wheeler auditorium are still under renovation.
Here’s a peek at the rosettes in the ceiling of Central Hall.  Plaster workers have painstakingly restored them, so they look like the day they were created.

Starting February 20, many departments will have shifted around.  Don’t hesitate to ask a staff members to point you in the right direction.