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                                                                               September 2013

Frederick County Public Libraries



As we head into the fall season and our youngsters return to school, don't forget the library is here to help with homework, research, and special projects. Whether you stop by one of our eight locations or visit our busiest branch on the web, you'll find a wealth of services that directly benefit your child, no matter what age.


And for our future students, the fall is a great time to discover storytimes, high-quality educational programs, and special events. Of course, all of these services and programs are free. 

In the event that this newsletter was forwarded to you by a friend and you would like to continue to receive information about library programs, services, and events, we invite you to sign up here for our email newsletter.


We look forward to seeing you soon!



Darrell Batson, Director
Frederick County Public Libraries
In This Issue
Food for Thought
Calling All Kitchen Scientists!
Grow Up Great and Have Fun Doing It!
Making the Most of Storytime!
Celebrating Constitution Day!
Wacky Wedensdays
Common Core Fear? FCPL is Here!
How They Croaked
Keep in Touch
Special Event

Music on the Terrace

11:30 am-1:30 pm

Fridays in September

Carroll Creek Linear Park Amphitheater

across from the

C. Burr Artz Public Library


For details, click here


As the new school year begins children often start to suffer from the breakfast blahs, lunch box woes, and after school snack attacks. It becomes a struggle to continuously come up with healthy ideas to meet our children's dietary demands. But never fear! FCPL is here! Browse the titles listed below for some ideas on how to get your child's school year off to a healthy and happy start.


Appetite for Life: the thumbs up, no yucks guide to getting your kid to be a great eater--including over 100 kid approved recipes by Stacie Antine


Batter Up Kids: sensational snacks: healthy eats from the Premier Children's Cooking School by Barbara Beery


The Lunch Box by Kate McMillan


Vegan Lunch Box: 150 amazing, animal free lunches kids and grown-ups will love! by Jennifer McCann


The Mayo Clinic Kid's Cookbook: 50 favorite recipes for fun and healthy eating by Mayo Clinic


Submitted by Cheryl Dillman

Emmitsburg Branch Library

Why do eggs float in salt water?

How does fresh pineapple keep Jell-O from setting?

What is a way to naturally preserve fruit?

How can the temperature of milk be lowered enough to freeze into ice cream without a freezer?


If you are considering science fair projects this fall, don't forget about food! There is a lot of chemistry in cooking. FCPL has many kitchen science resources from which to choose containing science experiments that will answer these questions (and more J). Here are a few suggestions:



Experiments with Foods by Salvatore Tocci

I Am a Scientist in the Kitchen by Lisa Burke

Everyday Science Experiments in the Kitchen by John Hartzog

Foodworks by Linda Hendry

Prize-Winning Science Fair Projects for Curious Kids by Joe Rhatigan and Rain Newcomb








Remember to use the steps of the Scientific Method! See these super- useful books:

Master the Scientific Method by Ann Benbow and Colin Mably

Get Ready for a Winning Science Project by Sandra Buczynski


Submitted by Barbara Barnette

Middletown Branch Library
PNC Bank has been a supporter of the Summer Reading Program for several years. PNC's sponsorship goes above and beyond lending their name to a project. PNC forms partnerships with nonprofit organizations that focus on early childhood education, community and economic development, as well as the arts, to list just a few.Founded by The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., PNC Grow Up Great and PNC Crezca con Éxito form a bilingual, $350 million, multi-year initiative that began in 2004 to help prepare children--particularly underserved children--from birth to age five for success in school and life. One local PNC employee, who volunteers regularly through Grow Up Great, agrees with this philosophy whole heartedly. Linda Duvall, a teller at the E. Patrick Street branch on the Square Corner has volunteered every year PNC has been involved. "We must capture the young early. They learn so much in those first years. Kids are our future." 

Through Grow Up Great, PNC emphasizes the importance of the first five years of life by providing innovative opportunities that enhance learning and development in a child's early years. Duvall has a background in volunteerism. She was a dedicated volunteer in her sons' classrooms while they went through Frederick County Public Schools. Duvall also commits her time during the school year to the Judy Center's family literacy night which meets at Waverly Elementary. "It's nice. There is a dinner and story time and then the kids do an art project based on the story."


This year Frederick County Public Libraries partnered with Westview Promenade to promote Fun Fest and the Summer Reading Program. Westview PNC branch volunteers participated at every Fun Fest. At the most recent event, Koreena Thompson and Perry Palmer had kids playing PNC baseball toss.


Whether it is the Summer Reading Program, Fun Fest, or Family Literacy Night, PNC Bank prides itself on being involved in its community, especially around issues that support our youngest students having the best start in life. Through volunteers like Linda, Koreena, and Parry, it shows.


Submitted by Val Atmonavage

C. Burr Artz Public Libraries

Children have the opportunity to enjoy quality literature in a fun and exciting setting during storytimes in the library! Early literacy activities are so important during these critical years before a child enters preschool and elementary school settings. Did you know that storytimes are designed to incorporate early learning skills to prepare children for school? What a great venue for children to experience new concepts and interact with others. Here is where the life-long love of reading may begin.


In order to make storytime a wonderful experience, here are some suggested expectations.

  • Participate! When your child sees you participating and taking an active role in storytime, then he is more likely to be involved in the experience. Sing, clap, and bounce! Chant, read, and jump! By staying engaged, you and your child will be able to reflect later on the activities. 
  • Encourage listening! As some of the storytime activities focus on listening skills, it is important to encourage your child to listen by modeling that behavior. Children may be easily distracted by extraneous talking. 
  • Step away but come back! If your child is having a challenging time it is perfectly fine to step away from the area with your child until she is ready to rejoin the group. Please come back to the storytime area at that time - sometimes children make noise and we understand that! 
  • Bring empty hands! Children are less likely to be distracted when others around them do not have snacks, drinks or toys from home. All we need at storytime is you and your child!

We hope these tips will help storytime be more fun and engaging for everyone. We hope to see you participating at a storytime near you!


Submitted by Terri Perper

Middletown Public Library

On September 17, 1787, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention met for the last time to sign the document they had created. We encourage all Americans to observe this important day in our nation's history by attending local events in your area. Celebrate Constitution Day at the Thurmont Library by joining in a community "Bell Ringing Ceremony" on Tuesday, September 17th at 6:30 pm.


Additionally, Thurmont will offer another chance to celebrate by travelling back-in time to learn about the Constitution! Step into our time machine and visit with Ben Franklin as he teaches us about the Colonial times and the Constitution. Ben will show us how to prepare colonial foods, play some colonial games and try our hand at writing with a quill. Programs will be offered on Friday, September 20th at 11 am and 1 pm.


Register early as space on the time machine will be limited! Simply register at fcpl.org or call 301 600 7214.


Submitted by Marlene Bordner

Thurmont Regional Library

Summer is coming to close, the kids are headed back to school and the library is getting a little calmer. It's a sign that Summer Reading is almost over and it's a time to reflect on the summer. What a wacky summer it's been in the Children's Department, literally.


This summer marked the first weekly Wacky Wednesdays Dress Up Days at the C. Burr Artz Public Library. Every Wednesday from June through August 14 the librarians of C. Burr Artz donned their wackiest gear in an effort to bring some more fun to the library and encouraged patrons little and big to do the same. From crazy socks, to sportswear, to Super Hero Day (a staff favorite), Wacky Wednesdays was a fun time for staff and patrons alike.


Given the success of the weekly shenanigans we've decided to institute Wacky Wednesdays again, so check on FCPL.org in the near future to find out what your wacky librarian's will be wearing next and join in on the fun. Because after all, you can never have too much fun or be too wacky.


Submitted by Stephanie Long

C. Burr Artz Public Library

You may have heard of the new Common Core Standards for education and wondered what they are. According to the Frederick County Public Schools website, "Common standards help ensure that students receive a rigorous, high-quality education that's consistent from school to school and state to state. Common Core Standards are guidelines that we're using in Frederick County to help write our curriculum. The new standards don't tell our teachers what or how to teach; they simply outline the skills that all students should master. FCPS teachers and curriculum writers are using those standards to help ensure that all our students continue to be ready for college and a career."


Frederick County Public Libraries is helping area children get a head start on their Kindergarten learning. Here are just a few Kindergarten standards from the Maryland Common Core State Curriculum Framework related to English Language Arts that FCPL Preschool and Starlight Storytimes support:

  • With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
  • With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story.
  • Ask and answer questions about unknown words in a text.
  • With prompting and support, describe the relationship between illustrations and the story in which they appear (e.g., what moment in a story an illustration depicts).
  • Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding. 

FCPL also helps FCPS teachers support these standards in the classroom by recommending new book titles via the @FredCoLibrary twitter feed: #books4edu. Parents are welcome to follow our Twitter account to keep abreast of great books that support the Common Core.

FCPL also offers an online tool, Novelist K-8 (you will need your library card), which has the resource 'Common Core Connections.' These short guides were developed specifically with Common Core State Standards in mind. Each annotated guide focuses on three nonfiction titles, and offers two standards-based questions per book.


Parents and caregivers are a child's first teachers, building children's listening and speaking skills through conversation and storytelling, building social and emotional skills through relationships with family and friends, looking for opportunities in our communities that offer learning experiences for their children, and getting children ready for school. Here are a few things parents and caregivers can do: 

  • Read to your children every day, just 20 minutes of reading everyday can make a huge difference in their learning.
  • Tell family stories and ask children to tell stories, too.
  • Cultivate literacy everywhere-point out shapes, colors, numbers, letters, and words wherever you go.
  • Encourage imaginative play to build emotional, language, and thinking skills.
  • Take children to Frederick County Public Libraries storytimes where children learn to interact with their peers, build listening, social, emotional, and early literacy skills, and discover that reading and learning are fun! 

by Robin Goetz and Robyn Monaco

Frederick County Public Libraries
by George Bragg with illustrations by Kevin O'Malley

If ever there were a book that has everything a reluctant reader, a middle-school-aged boy, or anyone with a sense of curiosity and a touch for the macabre would adore, it is How They Croaked. Here is a careful study of the deaths of 19 famous people throughout history with plenty of details about how each lived his or her life before reaching a terrible demise. And, boy, were those demises terrible!


Beginning with King Tut and ending with the death of Albert Einstein, this book provides plenty of facts, seasoned with just the right amount of grotesque disgustingness. For example, after clearly explaining how scientists now know that King Tut died of malaria, Bragg takes us into great detail about why mummies were preserved, how that preservation was done, and what happened to Tut and many other mummies once their tombs were discovered. Evidently, mummification could only proceed once the organs were removed. Are you curious about how they removed Tut's brain without the benefit of modern surgery? Well, you'll have to read the book to find the nasty truth, but we can take a moment to talk about mummified eyeballs.


At the end of each chapter, Bragg offers great detail about subjects related to the life and/or death of the famous person featured. For example after explaining how Mozart's doctors treated him with leeches there is a careful list of pointers about using leeches in medical scenarios. The end of the chapter about Marie Antoinette includes lots of details about the guillotine and its inventor. There is a bit of history in some of the accounts, a bit of science in others, and even a look at sign language at the end of the chapter on Beethoven. Oh, yes, we were going to talk about mummified eyeballs. At the end of the King Tut chapter, there is a  "Cool Fact" explaining that mummies' eye sockets only appear to be empty. In actuality, the eyeballs are just extremely shriveled through mummification. Soak those eyeballs in a bit of water, and they rehydrate to almost their regular size. Yes, grotesque, but you have to admit intriguing.


More than anything, this book is a fascinating piece of non-fiction writing compelling enough to keep most readers going. There is a chapter about poor James Garfield, the second American president to have been assassinated. Most people don't know much about President Garfield, because he was assassinated so soon after he took office. Just four months after his inauguration, he was shot in the back and arm by Charles J. Guiteau, later found to be insane. Garfield lingered for about three months before he died, but actually, the gunshot wounds were not mortal. It seems that after he was shot, 10 different doctors each stuck at least one finger into his wound to try and find the bullet. Of these 10 different doctors, not one of them had actually washed his hands before beginning to explore the inner workings of the President. When a raging infection weakened Garfield, these masters of medicine used rubber hoses to drain the pus from the wound, believing that all that pus was actually a very good sign of healing. Poor Garfield never stood a chance. An autopsy proved that the bullet had not damaged any vital organs. Left alone President Garfield would likely have recovered and held office long enough to be remembered for more than his sad end.


Just so you don't think this is a cheap way to hook kids with lots of nasty stuff, you'll find plenty of great research to back up every story. Readers learn not only science and history, but also literary details, political shenanigans, musical facts, phobias and more. These historical figures come to life in vivid details about their times, their challenges, and their families, as well as their deaths. The book ends with a fascinating chart that shows how from King Tut to Albert Einstein each one of these people was somehow connected to all the others. You'll have to read the book to find out exactly how.


Maybe best of all, Georgia Bragg makes it a point to inform her readers that, although her subjects' deaths may have been awful, it was their lives that truly mattered. So, this talented author even concludes her fascinating work with a touch of philosophy. And to think, she does it while making her readers wince now and again with the gross, disgusting, and macabre. It's a recommended read for students from about grades 5 through 9 and their grownups, too.


Submitted by Deb Schepp

C. Burr Artz Public Library
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