Classes Fill Quickly, but Options Abound

Posted & filed under News, Technology.

The Lincolnwood Public Library’s first technology classes are taking place this fall, and the response has been incredible! All beginner-level classes and all classes covering Microsoft Office software have reached their enrollment limits. Our first two “iPad Basics” classes are also fully subscribed, although there are seats available in the follow-up classes, “Do More with Your iPad.”

If you didn’t have a chance to register for these popular classes in time, don’t despair! We’ll have instructors on hand for a monthly Open Lab where you can drop in and get some of your basic technology questions answered. The first Open Lab is Tuesday, September 30, 1-3 p.m.

You can also still sign up for classes that don’t have strict enrollment limits because they aren’t subject to space and equipment limitations. These open classes include You Can’t Google This, an evening session about premium library resources on September 18, and App, App, & Away, an hour-long overview of mobile apps on the afternoon of September 24. Starting next month, a series of theme-based classes will explore library resources in depth. Genealogy enthusiasts are invited to learn more about Ancestry Library Edition on October 7, while job seekers can see how the library can support their needs on October 24. Registration is not required for these theme-based classes. See the calendar for full details.

Based on the enthusiastic response from the community, we plan to offer many of the same technology classes again this winter, so keep an eye out for new dates and times. Meanwhile, if you wish to start learning Microsoft Office on your own, consider following free online courses from Connected Nation or GCFLearnFree. You can also use the kiosk in the library’s computer lab to access courses on Microsoft Office and hundreds of other topics. Not sure where to begin? Ask one of our librarians, email, or call us at (847) 677-5277. Although it’s too late to enroll in a few of our most popular classes this fall, it’s never too late to learn.

Everybody Move!

Posted & filed under News.

Celeste Cifala Roy was trained in musical theater and dance, but when she became a mother, she didn’t know any children’s songs. More than twenty years later, she knows hundreds—maybe thousands!—and shares them through her own music and movement program for children. This month, she brings that program, Everybody Move, to the Lincolnwood Public Library.

Roy began to build her vast repertoire of children’s music when she brought her infant son to National-Louis University’s Movement and Music Center, where she later worked. She learned from local artists like Fred Koch and Jim Gill, as well as celebrities like Raffi.

Now, Roy’s repertoire forms the basis of Everybody Move, where very young children explore music and movement through a mix of directed activities (singing, dance, musical instruments) and free play. Classes often revolve around a theme; participants in the library program will explore apples, leaves, and other highlights of the season.

A Skokie resident, Roy is “excited to get to know my neighbors in Lincolnwood.” While she has some favorite artists she’s looking forward to sharing, such as the Grammy-nominated duo Greg & Steve, she urges parents to share the music they love with their children. Conveying joy and playfulness through music and movement, as Roy has been doing for decades, benefits children far more than playing the “right” songs. (Incidentally, our Youth Services Librarians give the same advice about early literacy: if caregivers share books they enjoy, children will associate that positive feeling with reading.)

We look forward to welcoming Celeste Cifala Roy and Everybody Move to Lincolnwood!

Read Local

Posted & filed under News.

With more than 300,000 books published in the U.S. last year*—to say nothing of magazines, movies, and music—it’s all too easy to overlook a great title. Is there an item you think we should have in the library? Let us know by filling out the Request to Purchase form, and we’ll see if we can add it to our collection.

request to purchase









Of course, you can always use our catalog to request items from other libraries in our network, or ask us to request items that are more difficult to find…but much like that local strawberry that tastes sweeter than the supermarket kind, some books just ought to be local!


Pint of Strawberries, CC-BY Mr. T in DC





*according to Bowker

In a Galaxy Far, Far Away (and a Library Very Nearby)…

Posted & filed under News.

On view near the library’s entrance is a set of American Girl-style dolls wearing out-of-this-world Star Wars costumes made by Kathy van Beuningen. These 18-inch versions of Kathy’s full-sized costumes show a level of detail suitable for the big screen, but scaled for our display cases.
jawas dolls

The garments on these Jawas might be made from ragged material, but they boast the same intricate stitching as the fine fabrics of a Princess Leia dress across the way.

queen amidala dolls
Queen Amidala wears several sumptuous outfits in “Episode I: The Phantom Menace,” and two are represented in our display.




Incredibly, Kathy uses almost exclusively recycled and reused materials for her doll costumes. Other people’s trash is her treasure as she incorporates empty thread spools, candy wrappers, broken jewelry, and other odds and ends into her creations. She finds dolls at secondhand stores, though she must occasionally purchase new doll stands, modeling clay, and shoes.

darth vader doll

Kathy takes great care with accessories as well as suits: note the helmet at the feet of this Darth Vader.

darth maul doll
The faces of some dolls, including Queen Amidala and this imposing Darth Maul, are painted by Kathy’s husband, Vince Newkirk.




Look for your favorite characters in the display, then watch them come to life on Star Wars Day, Sunday, August 24. Kathy and other members of the 501st Legion Midwest Garrison and Rebel Legion: Nar Shaddaa base will be bringing us some special guests during the big event. Stop by to ask Kathy about her costumes, visit our photo booth, and test your Star Wars knowledge with trivia! May the Force be with you…

Back to School—For All Ages!

Posted & filed under News.

Lincolnwood’s School District 74 opens its doors to students this Wednesday, and teachers are busy writing lesson plans and decorating classrooms in preparation for a new school year. SD74 families, look for a special message from our children’s librarians in the library newsletter that is on its way to your mailbox.

But what if you’re too young or too old for SD74? Sharpen your pencils and come to the library (or library website) for a wide array of new classes and educational opportunities this fall!

For our youngest residents, from birth through age two, we offer Baby Bookworms on Wednesday mornings. The first fall session runs for three weeks, starting on September 10. We are also pleased to welcome Celeste Roy to Lincolnwood for Everybody Move! on Thursday mornings; the eight-week session begins September 11.

For the preschool set, our popular story programs continue with fall sessions of Stories & More and Friday Preschool Fun beginning the week of September 8. If you don’t have time to commit to these sessions, save the date for Saturday Stories on the second Saturday of each month, starting on September 13.

Students who commute to Niles West or other area high schools can still take advantage of their hometown library. Need last-minute, teacher-approved sources for research papers? Your Lincolnwood library card takes you way beyond Wikipedia, giving you access to encyclopedias, academic journals, and more via Resources by Topic for Grades 7-12. When the time comes, stop by the library to browse AP, ACT, SAT, and other test guides—along with college prep books!—in the 378 section of our Adult Non-Fiction department.

College-bound students probably shouldn’t risk bringing library books to distant dorm rooms, but library eBooks can go anywhere! Visit MyMediaMall and search “college” for titles you can download to your tablet or eReader, such as Who Moved My Laundry? A Day-by-day Guide to your First Year of College Life by Susan S. Fitzgerald, or even the I Love Trader Joe’s College Cookbook.

Adults who still get that back-to-school itch are in luck, as the library introduces a full slate of new technology classes this fall. Watch for the listing in our newsletter or check our online calendar for details. Looking for advanced topics or self-paced instruction? Visit us to explore the library’s video station, where you can follow engaging, top-quality courses—taught by recognized industry experts—on topics like digital photography, programming, and animation.

Also new this month: online registration for all library programs, making it even easier to learn and have fun with us. See you soon, pencils (or smartphones) at the ready!

Computer & Internet Security

Posted & filed under News, Technology.

In this era of ubiquitous technology, we seem to hear about a new threat to our computers or online presence almost daily. How can average technology users keep up, and what steps can we take to protect ourselves?

Those were some of the questions on the minds of Lincolnwood residents who attended the library’s July 16 class on Computer and Internet Security for Beginners, taught by the same tech pros from FireLogic who taught the popular Windows 8.1 class back in March.

Instructor Derrick Wlodarz enlivened the class with real-world examples drawn from security audits that FireLogic has performed for its clients. Some of these anecdotes sent shivers through the crowd, but for every frightening scenario, Wlodarz presented a practical safeguard.

The session was recorded, and the video appears at the bottom of this page. If you don’t have time to watch the entire recording, look for these highlights:

  • Following a three-minute video from CNN on the threat of “rogue wifi” in public places (at 14:55 in the video), Wlodarz places the problem in context with a series of infographics showing the relative scale of various security threats (28:00).
  • A “Myth or Fact” segment (beginning at 37:50) addresses common misconceptions about security, including the adequacy of free antivirus programs (58:38) and the immunity of Macs (1:03:33).
  • Wlodarz translates some security jargon (ransomware, adware, phishing) and answers the common question “…but where does all this nasty stuff come from?” (1:18:01).
  • He then offers tips for staying safe on social media and email (1:41:24) and presents some of his top picks for secure email providers and web browsers (1:51:59).

Here are two tips from FireLogic that you can put into practice right away:

  1. Test the strength of your chosen passwords at and the Password Haystack.
  2. When you get an email with a link to a website, hover over the link rather than clicking straight through. Look at the web address that pops up: is it a site you recognize, or just a string of numbers pointing to a hacker’s headquarters? Know before you click!

Review the Windows 8.1 class, as well as classes from other local libraries, on FireLogic’s YouTube channel. Looking for more technology classes? Visit our Events page to view our full slate of fall classes.

Discover your Roots at the Library!

Posted & filed under News.

The library has begun a subscription to Ancestry Library Edition—one of the most important online genealogy resources available todayunlocking thousands of databases and billions of indexed names to Lincolnwood residents.

You may already know about using Census records and city directories for genealogy, but Ancestry Library Edition will add many more sources to your research, including U.S. school yearbooks, church histories, and WWI and WWII draft registration cards. Here are a few more categories (and sample collections) to give you a sense of the breadth of coverage:

  • casualty listings: Dachau Concentration Camp Records, 1945
  • social and place histories: Louisiana, Slave Records, 1719-1820
  • organizational directories: Worldwide Masonic Directory, 1860
  • professional directories: Appointments of U. S. Postmasters, 1832-1971
  • court records: New South Wales, Australia, Police Gazettes, 1854-1930
  • data provided in partnership with Jewish Given Name Variations
  • family trees that members have chosen to make public: Insert your name here (Your relatives may have started tracing your ancestors without telling you!)

Other popular tools, such as Message Boards and Charts and Forms, are included in the library’s subscription. Coverage is strongest for the United States, United Kingdom, Western Europe, and Canada.

Whether professional or hobbyist, expert or novice, genealogist or historian, find your roots at the library. Ready to begin?

  1. Come visit us! Ancestry Library Edition is only available in the library building.
  2. Can’t get to the library building? Learn more about Ancestry Library Edition from home by perusing this online guide or watching “Five Minute Finds” videos from on YouTube.
  3. If you have local roots, start your search from home in our Chicago Tribune archive, which includes a powerful obituary search tool.

If you would like help using Ancestry Library Edition, or any other library resource, just ask one of our Adult Services Librarians. You can also set up a one-on-one appointment for more detailed instruction by emailing or calling us at (847) 677-5277.

Pronunciator — New Language Learning Program

Posted & filed under News.

Pronunciator Language learning ProgramThe Library has replaced Mango Languages with a new language learning program – Pronunciator. Unlike Mango Languages, Pronunciator lets you learn a different language from any of 60 languages. “I speak Hindi, and I want to learn French.” “I’m a Russian speaker and want to pick up some Thai for my trip to Bangkok.” With Pronunciator these two scenarios are possible. In addition, Pronunciator provides ESL courses in 50 different languages to help learn and improve English language skills. While Pronunciator like Mango is free to Lincolnwood Library cardholders; it costs less for the library to provide.

Pronunciator combines traditional language learning methods (verb conjugation, vocabulary-building, quizzes, etc.) with modern interactive methods (speech recognition to help with pronunciation, side-by-side poetry, virtual conversations, etc.) You have the option of learning through guided “Postcards” courses or from the ground up by building your own conversations.

Courses are designed for children and adults from beginners to advanced learners.

Are you preparing for a trip? Download a phrasebook and audio lessons to take along.

Learn on your computer or download an app for iPad, iPod, iPhone, or Android tablet or phones.

Ready to Start Learning?

  1. On the library’s website, find Pronunciator in the Research drop-down menu.
  2. The first time you have to create an account:
    • Enter your email (optional)
    • Enter your library card number
    • You’ll be given a username and password
    • Once you have logged in, go to My Account in the drop down menu Logged In to change your username and password to something you can more easily remember.

If you would like help using Pronunciator or any other library resource, just ask one of our Adult Services Librarians. You can also set up a one-on-one appointment for more detailed instruction by emailing or calling us at 847.677.5277.

Windows 8.1 for beginners

Posted & filed under News.

On Saturday morning, the tech pros from FireLogic taught an informative class on Windows 8.1. From the new modern interface to the cloud power of OneDrive, this two hour class offered a fantastic overview plus some handy tips and tricks.

If you missed the class or just need a refresher, you’re in luck! FireLogic recorded the entire session.

For more help with Windows 8.1 and other technology topics, visit our kiosk in the library or FireLogic’s YouTube channel for previously recorded classes.

Newspapers around the globe

Posted & filed under News.

Lincolnwood is a very diverse community and many residents have personal or business interests out-of-town, or may enjoy reading in their native language. The Lincolnwood Library provides online access to NewspaperDirect PressDisplay, a great resource for newspapers from other cities, other countries, and in other languages. The service provides unique online access to today’s newspapers from around the world in full-color, full-page format. Read newspapers in the original format with all the ads, articles, comics, and features found in the original print publications. The service also provides a translation feature for some newspapers. Newspapers are usually available on the day they are published and remain available for sixty days.

All you need is your library card number and a smart device or internet enabled computer and you can be reading news from just about anywhere in the world. The service is also available on the computers in the Lincolnwood Library.

The easiest way to use NewspaperDirect PressDisplay is to browse to the newspaper you are interested in and then just look through the paper as you would a printed newspaper.

Where Do I Go to Find It?
From the library website,, click Research, choose NewspaperDirect.

PressDisplay screenshots