San Diego: Lineup of Free Sally Ride Science Workshops at Local Libraries Expands with New Courses

From Scripps

” A program offering free Sally Ride Science STEAM workshops at San Diego library branches is gearing up to serve more students with an expanded course lineup covering everything from Marine Mammals and Kitchen Chemistry to Wearable Electronics and The Science of Harry Potter.Winter offerings for the Library NExT program, a partnership between the San Diego Public Library and UC San Diego, include more than 40 hands-on workshops at library branches around the city. The new schedule represents a tripling of the number of courses offered each month. See a full schedule for January through March and register for classes here.The free STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) workshops are held mostly on Saturdays. They cover a wide range of subjects, including Messy Science, Tiny-House Architecture, Robotics, Video Game Design and Physics of Fidget Spinners. The workshops, usually lasting from 3 to 4 hours, are geared either to middle school students or to those in high school.The workshops have been a big success with students and parents, said Gina Bravo, program development coordinator for the San Diego Library.”


Man Threatens to Shoot People at Alpine Library With Toy Gun

From NBC San Diego

” A man armed with a toy gun was pointing it at people in the crowded Alpine Library and threatening to shoot them Saturday afternoon, according to the Sheriff’s Department.”I thought I was dead,” one of the people in the library said. “I thought I was a dead man. And then he starts pulling the trigger and up to that point and I’m thinking I’m going to be dead, and then I’m thinking it’s going to be like an airsoft gun or a co2 gun.”Before deputies arrived the suspect, identified as Jack Wadel, 60, threatened to pull a handgun out of his backpack. In an attempt to keep him from grabbing the gun, a person in the library tackled him. The person sustained minor injuries to his left eye. No one else was injured in the incident.”

San Diego library system launches literacy program for young children


” The city of San Diego library system Monday launched a literacy program designed to increase the number of books that parents and other caregivers read to young children.
Library patrons who want to participate in the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program can register online or at any city library location. Small rewards are offered when parents, caregivers and children hit milestones on the way to reading 1,000 books.”Experiencing books at a very young age opens up so many opportunities for children — opportunities that pay off well into adulthood,” said Misty Jones, the city’s library director. “By adding the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten early literacy program at all 36 San Diego Public Library locations, we’re giving parents a clear path to follow to develop literacy skills in their children before they begin school.”Library officials cited data from the National Education Association that says 26 percent of children who were read to three or four times a week by a family member recognized all the letters of the alphabet. The ability for a child to recognize the alphabet drops to 14 percent for children who were read to less frequently.”

San Diego Tackles New San Ysidro Library With Seasoned Design Team

From NBC 7

” The City of San Diego is pushing ahead with its ambitious plan to build a new San Ysidro library, which will be at least three times bigger than the existing one. Officials have selected a seasoned design-build team, Turner Construction Company and SVA Architects, to begin the process. A single-story, 15,000-square-foot library will replace the existing 4,089 square-foot branch.It will be located on a 1.62-acre lot, just west of Interstate 805 near Beyer Boulevard on 123 East Seaward Avenue. This transit-friendly development will be only two blocks away from the Beyer Blvd. Trolley Station.Community input has helped inspire the team to design a cultural beacon for the neighborhood, said city officials. Residents in San Ysidro have been promised a new library for many years.”

Self-checkout kiosks installed in all San Diego libraries

From The San Diego Union-Tribune

” San Diego has completed installation of self-checkout computer kiosks across the city’s 36-branch library system, and officials say users are embracing the new technology.The city has been adding a credit card feature to allow payment of overdue fines directly at the machines.The goal of the $1.6 million project is to eliminate long lines, free workers up for other tasks and make inventory more efficient and accurate.Library officials said usage rates at the branches have averaged more than 80 percent. Patrons reluctant to use the new technology can still check out their items in the traditional way with a library worker.“Our main objective is to enhance our customer service,” said Misty Jones, head of the city’s library system. “The self-check machines are simple to use and allow our staff to focus more time on helping patrons with library materials or developing new, innovative programs to serve our diverse communities.”While no positions have been eliminated, the new technology could eventually allow the library system to shrink its staff. The kiosks could also allow branches to stay open more hours with the same personnel.”

San Diego libraries to celebrate Great American Eclipse with Sky Party


” If you’re looking for a way to celebrate the Great American Eclipse in San Diego, consider joining in a “Sky Party” at your local public library.Even if San Diego isn’t on the path of the total eclipse, residents are still excited to see about a 60 percent eclipse and the San Diego Public Library has planned family-friendly offerings leading up to the unique event on August 21. First, on Saturday, Aug. 19, libraries will hold workshops featuring Scripps Institute of Oceanography scientists, who will help prepare families to observe and experience the eclipse. Participants will learn about the solar system, how and why eclipses occur and build pinhole cameras to help view the eclipse.”

San Diego: UCSD brings prep classes to city libraries for area students

From The San Diego Union-Tribune

” Students throughout the city will be able to take free classes that can help them get into college or land good jobs through a program that is being expanded by the San Diego Public Library and UC San Diego.“Every child in San Diego deserves a chance to go to college and get that great job,” San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer said Tuesday morning during a press conference at the Valencia Park/Malcolm X Library. “But sometimes the price tag puts courses that would give their college applications a boost, like robotics class or test prep, out of reach. This program is going to help kids from all over the city, from Skyline Hills to Rancho Penasquitos, as an opportunity to advance their education for free.”Classes, workshops and counseling sessions started in January in a pilot program at the Central and Malcolm X libraries, and so far have 150 middle and high school students have participated. Since the launch, the program has expanded into branch libraries in Mira Mesa, Serra Mesa-Kearny Mesa and Tierrasanta.On Tuesday, Faulconer and top university and library officials announced that by the end of the year, the classes will be in branch libraries in City Heights, Linda Vista, Rancho Penasquitos, and Logan Heights, where classes begin Aug. 5.Within the next few years, similar classes and workshops could be offered in all 36 of the city’s branch libraries, said Library Department Director Misty Jones.”