Halfway to the Win

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We’ve reached the halfway point in our 2016 Summer Reading Challenge, Read for the Win. In the first six weeks, you have been busy attending events, singing, reading, creating, and playing! You still have plenty of time—right up until the last day of August—to complete activities and check in for star punches and tickets. After that, we will draw ten lucky winners to receive prize baskets filled with gift cards, games, and even a Kindle Paperwhite e-reader!

Speaking of Kindles, an easy way to earn up to three raffle tickets is to borrow a library Kindle and use it to read ebooks. You can also read library ebooks (or listen to audiobooks) on your personal device. Get started on our website, or ask a librarian to learn more.

Earn three more raffle tickets just for trying the library’s online resources. Suggestions for quick activities: look at a newspaper from another part of the world in Library PressDisplay, or find your next great read in NoveList. If you have more time, research your next big purchase in Consumer Reports, take a Lynda.com course, or come to the library and build a family tree with Ancestry Library Edition.

Have you gone to see the “The BFG” since it hit theaters on the first of the month? If so, claim your raffle ticket for the activity “Watch a movie based on a book”! Other big summer adaptations include “Me Before You” and “The Infiltrator.” See our book-to-movie suggestions for all ages, plus adaptations that you can access for free with your library card on hoopla digital.

Many of the activities on the Challenge Card are even simpler to complete. Find us at the library or around town to sing us a song, show us your book-related paintings or drawings, tell us what you’ve read (and cooked!), and get your well-deserved star punches.

prize basket

(Don’t let Abe hoard all the raffle tickets! Get in on your chance to win one of these awesome prize baskets.)


Instagram Highlights

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Are you following the Lincolnwood Public Library on social media? We’ve had a library Facebook page for years, but just started an Instagram account about six weeks ago. Since then, we’ve posted:

Our Instagrammers are also foodies! Ketchup, popcorn, French fries, and Andy’s frozen custard have all made appearances. Of course, when we’re not busy eating, we’re reading, so our feed is full of books for all ages.

If you’re curious about Instagram, check out this tutorial on how to sign up, follow accounts, post photos, apply filters, and interact with other users.

Already an Instagrammer? Follow us and comment—we’d love to hear from you! Use the #amreading hashtag along with #lincolnwoodlibrary to show us what you’re reading. Bonus: if you post this one as a selfie, you’ll earn a raffle ticket in our Summer Reading Challenge.

Books, books, and more books on our library Instagram account:

Book Bundles

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When preschoolers look for books at the library, they usually aren’t looking for specific titles like older kids would. They just want books about their favorite topic of the week, be it getting dirty, things that go, or summertime. But the picture book section can be a little daunting for a three-year-old, and searching for the perfect title on a topic is time-consuming for grown-ups.

Our youth librarians have taken the guesswork out of this process by pre-selecting our favorites for you and making them available as gift-wrapped Book Bundles. A Book Bundle is a stack of three to six books on a specific topic—anything from dogs and cats to the first day of school. Some of the bundles, such as multicultural books or books about how hard bedtime can be, might be conversation-starters; others are surefire laugh-out-loud selections. (There’s even a bit of potty humor!)

Book Bundles are located near the I Can Read books in the picture book section, as well as near the toddler books. Can’t find them? Ask a librarian! We have plenty of bundles ready to go, and if we don’t have a bundle on the topic you want, we’ll create it just for you.

Movie Under the Stars

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Bring your blankets and lawn chairs and join us at Proesel Park on Friday, June 24, as we celebrate Read for the Win in Lincolnwood with the original “Toy Story” outside on the big screen! The movie starts at dusk; we’ll have snacks and other freebies available while supplies last.

Need a refresher on the plot and characters before the event? There are five “Toy Story” comic books that you can download for free using hoopla digital. Three are adaptations of the movies, while two others (Toy Overboard, Part 1 and Part 2) are an original story.

Also on hoopla, find the six-hour Toy Story Collection audiobook, plus two ebooks to read on your computer or mobile device: the picture book Little Lost Sheep and the Toy Story Junior Novel.

Don’t forget music! Download the soundtracks from the first, second, and third “Toy Story” movies to play in your car on the way to Proesel Park, and “Toy Story Sing-Along Songs” for your own private karaoke party. There’s also a shorter collection of “Toy Story Favorites,” and the “Songs and Story” collection that combines the best of audiobook and soundtrack, in both English and Spanish.

You’ve got a friend in us—your Lincolnwood Library!

Get Guthrie-d

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Woody Guthrie event infoOn Sunday, June 19, the library hosts Chris Walz of the Old Town School of Folk Music for a presentation called “Woody Guthrie: Roots and Branches” at Lincolnwood Place. To get yourself in the mood for the event—or if you’re out of town and can’t make it—check out the many Woody Guthrie materials in our hoopla digital library.

Guthrie’s only finished novel, House of Earth, is available as an audiobook, as is This Land That I Love, a dual biography of Guthrie and his contemporary, Irving Berlin. Families can enjoy an audiobook or video adaptation of the 1998 picture book This Land Is Your Land, with words from Guthrie’s most famous song, and illustrations by Kathy Jakobsen.

As for the music itself, hoopla offers two dozen Guthrie albums, including the Library of Congress recordings, tributes by Pete Seeger and other artists, and the full content (nearly seven hours) of the boxed set “American Radical Patriot.”

Please join us at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday at 7000 N. McCormick Boulevard, and bring your Read for the Win Challenge Card with you for a summer reading raffle ticket. Looking for ways to earn more raffle tickets? Listening to any of those digital audiobooks counts, as does singing a song…so if you’re inspired by Walz’s presentation, drop by the library and serenade us!

hoopla Kids Mode

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Looking for an audiobook for a long car ride, music album for a spontaneous dance party, or a movie your whole family can watch right away?

Just in time for summer vacation, hoopla digital has introduced Kids Mode, a setting designed to make it easier for parents and children to find kid-friendly e-media. All content shown while in Kids Mode has been deemed suitable for children up to 12 years of age.

Use hoopla digital to read an ebook or listen to an e-audiobook, and get a punch on your Summer Reading Challenge Card!

arthurhoopla Kids Mode includes these family favorites:

Disney · Pete the Cat · My Little Pony · Archie · Rick Riordan · Star Wars · Big Nate · Peanuts · Magic School Bus · Amelia Bedelia · Paddington · Lumberjanes · VeggieTales · Kidz Bop · Caillou · Raffi · Max & Ruby · Boxcar Children · Minions · Mo Willems · Madeline · Fancy Nancy · Arthur · and many more!

To enter Kids Mode, you just need to flip a switch in your hoopla settings. If you’d like some help getting started, see our user guide, stop by the library, or catch us around town at one of our summer events.

Read for the Win

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read for the win

The 2016 Summer Reading Challenge at the Lincolnwood Library runs June 1 through August 31. Team up with us to read, learn, and have fun as we Read for the Win this summer!

Pick up a Read for the Win Challenge Card at the library or at any library-sponsored event. For each of the activities you complete, earn a raffle ticket for a chance to win one of 10 prize baskets.

We have tons of special events planned for you this summer, and for each one you attend, you’ll earn a Challenge Card punch and a raffle ticket. Look for us at the pool, the park, and your favorite Lincolnwood businesses. Some programs require registration; see our Events page for details.

For reading-related challenges, library staff can provide suggestions for all ages and tastes. Look for book lists at our events, or ask us anytime!

SD74 families: everything you read for the library’s summer reading program also counts for the district’s 5,074 book challenge, so be sure to log your achievements on your Challenge Card and on the SD74 website.


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Over the past decade, the humble # has evolved into one of the world’s most widely recognized symbols. One of its many names, octothorp, was coined by Bell Labs in the 1960s as a way to refer to the number key on the touch-tone telephone. But the term that has stuck—the one added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2014—is hashtag.

The hashtag’s online debut dates to 1993, when chat rooms used it to designate groups and topics. In 2007, Twitter—then just one year old—adopted the symbol as a way of tracking conversations and trends. (Intrigued by the history of the hashtag? Check out this infographic for more.)

Dozens of social media sites, including Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, now support hashtags in searching and posting. Hashtags can be used to show solidarity—examples from 2015 include #BlackLivesMatter, #LoveWins, and #JeSuisCharlie. They can also be used to follow breaking news or live events. Try searching #ChicagoCubs (or just #Cubs, or even #FlyTheW) for photos and updates from Wrigley, or #Election2016 for the latest from the campaign trail.

Soon, you’ll have a chance to tag your photos with #LincolnwoodLibrary as a way of participating in our Summer Reading Challenge. (Details coming next week!) You can also bring the library’s traveling mascot on your next trip, tagging photos of him with #AdventureAbe. Use our hashtags to tell us what you’re doing on your #SummerVacation, or join the global #FridayReads discussion.

hashtag adventureabe

(Adventure Abe visits Freeport, IL, the site of the August 27, 1858 Lincoln-Douglas debate   #AdventureAbe   #Election1860)

Lynda.com Learning Paths

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Eight months ago, we announced that Lincolnwood residents could use Lynda.com anywhere, not just within the library. As a result, Lynda.com usage is up 600% over this time last year!

If you have yet to take advantage of your access to this fantastic online learning portal, now is a great time to begin. Lynda.com recently introduced customized Learning Paths, sequences of courses designed to help you achieve your career goals. Among the 50+ Learning Paths are Become a Project Manager, Become a Digital Illustrator, and Become a Programmer. Completion time ranges from 12 to 68 hours.

Other recent additions to Lynda.com include guides to complex subjects like Starting a Business and ongoing weekly series such as Teacher Tech Tips and The Practicing Photographer. Curated playlists are still available in the Playlist Center, while topic overview pages now highlight Editor’s Picks and stand-alone Documentaries. Users receive certificates for every course (and Learning Path) completed; now, you can share your certificates with LinkedIn (Lynda.com’s parent company) and other social networks with a single click:

Lynda.com share certificate






Use our Adult Learning & Job Seeking resource page to get started with Lynda.com. If you have any questions about accessing and using the site—or if you just want to share what you are learning!—don’t hesitate to contact us at digitalservices@lincolnwoodlibrary.org.

Choose Privacy

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While there are some best practices for information privacy that all technology users should try to adopt, many other practices are a matter of personal choice. You can set up your web browser to store your history indefinitely, or clear it as soon as you close the window. (Note: if you’re using on a public computer like the ones at the library, it’s never a good idea to save your browsing history.) Depending on which mobile device you use, you can protect it with a 4-digit numerical passcode, a longer alphanumerical password, touch ID, or even a unique gesture based on a picture.

One tool that allows almost endless customization is the browser extension Privacy Badger, which blocks the third party trackers that enable advertisers to follow you from site to site. (Have you noticed an ad for those shoes you searched for yesterday in your Facebook sidebar today?) Once you’ve installed Privacy Badger in Firefox or Chrome, you can tell it to stop blocking a third party source that you recognize as trustworthy, or start blocking one it missed.

Of course, you could spend hours adjusting your settings and customizing your tools, only to be blindsided by an altered software reconfiguration, policy, user agreement, or law. To avoid surprises, consider performing a personal privacy “audit” every two to three months. Mark it on your calendar or set an alarm so you don’t forget!

  1. Start by reviewing your browser, device, app, and social media settings. Search “privacy” and the name of each program or device to get the latest information on available settings.
  2. Check for software updates, especially those that keep your antivirus and antimalware programs Don’t forget your mobile apps, whose updates frequently contain security patches!
  3. Clear unneeded activity logs, browsing history, and other data from your computer. A free program like CCleaner or BleachBit can expedite this process. Use their defaults, or set your own preferences; as with so many other privacy practices, the choice is yours.

For more online privacy tips, visit the FCC, ACLU, Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, or the other sites linked above—or visit the library and ask a librarian.

This blog post was written for Choose Privacy Week, a national awareness program of the American Library Association that focuses on information privacy rights in the digital age.

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