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National Domestic Violence Awareness Month

President Obama has declared October, 2009, as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  The National Domestic Violence Hotline web site has much information on domestic violence, including resources, statistics, and more.  The hotline number is:  1-800-799-Safe (7233).


NASA Educational Materials

Although intended for educators, there are over 3000 resources here in this NASA database that could of help and interest to all kinds of library customers and library staff.  There is also a browsable list of the publications available.

Find Your Summer Camp 2009

The Memphis Commercial Appeal provides this online search tool to help you find summer camps in the Memphis Area.   There are ways to narrow your search, including by camp type:  Arts/Hobbies, Day Camps, Educational, Residential, Specialty, and Sports.

Free books!

“Do you remember the magic of your first book?”  This nonprofit organization provides free books to children who are in financial need.

URDB: The Universal Record Database

The URDB is “an open, participatory database for world records.”  This is a very new site, but it allows people to search existing records, set new ones, or try to surpass old records.  So, if you are curious about the “Longest Shh…” or the “Largest Toothpick Beard,” this is the site for you.

Free Technology for Teachers

This blog reviews free technology resources for teachers and offers guidance on how to integrate technology into the classroom.  And of course, the best part is that everything is free!  A quick scan suggests that the content is very timely and well-researched.

Inspiring Young Readers

From Norvel Adams-Walker, East Region Manager

Best-selling author James Patterson has a new website encouraging children to read. The site is geared toward newborns to ages 10 and up. Patterson has selected several age-appropriate titles and even divided the books into various genres for the older ones.  This website is eye-catching as well as educational so it should appeal to kids and adults as all are trying to find something new to read.

Thanks, Norvel!

Build Your Family Tree

Thanks to Mary Seratt and Hillary Pesson for passing this along!

dynastree is a site that allows users to create their own family trees.  This could be very helpful for children who need to do a genealogy project.  There is also a great tool that will map the distribution of a particular surname in the U.S.  A free registration is required to build a family tree, but the mapping tool can be used without a registration.

Banning Children From Libraries?

I just received a call about Congress’ move to ban children from libraries… WHAT??!!

OK, calm down, and take a deep breath.  There is much more to the story.

The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), passed this past August, requires that all products for children under 12 must be tested for lead.  Books are subject to this requirement, as lead is often present in ink, but testing is expensive and time consuming.

So what does this mean for libraries?  Well, that is not completely clear just yet.  The Consumer Product Safety Commission is still working on guidelines for all industries, including schools and libraries, for when the law takes effect on February 10th.  Libraries and schools could be granted an exemption.

For more information:

ALA Wiki –

Library Journal –

SurLaLune Fairy Tales

SurLaLune Fairy Tales is a great resource with over 1,200 fairy tales and 1,500 illustrations.  The major fairy tales are annotated, with histories, interpretations and links to similar tales across cultures.  Click on “How to Search the SurLaLane Website” for links to timelines, quotations and much more.

Tainted Milk From China

These are two sites from the World Health Organization that offer information on the melamine-contaminated infant formula and other dairy products that have affected over 40,000 children in China.  Other people in other countries are beginning to be affected because China has exported these melamine-contaminated products to other countries.

The second site includes frequently answered questions on melamine.

According the information from the first WHO site, melamine was what tainted the pet food that killed so many pets in the United States in 2007.

Awareness of self-asphyxiation in children

75 percent of children (ages 9-16) have heard of or even played the “choking game,”  according to this website.   But, what’s even worse, according to the site, 25 percent of the parents do not know about the game, including parents of some victims.  This website is hosted by the Dangerous Adolescent Behavior Foundation, and gives the games’ other slang names as well as warning signs if a child has been participating in this dangerous activity.  The site is to raise awareness about this tragedy before any other senseless death occur.

Kids Meals : Obesity on the Menu

The Center for Science in the Public Interest offers here the results of their investigation into the nutritional quality of children’s meals at 13 top restaurant chains.

Immunization Program — State of Tennessee

The Tennessee Department of Health offers extensive information on immunizations, including the required vaccines children in Tennessee must have to attend child care, school, or college.  There is also information on the federally-funded Tennessee Vaccines for Children Program which enables Doctors enrolled in the program to adminster vaccines for free to eligible children from birth to 18 years of age.

Sharing our national past time worldwide

This is a non-profit organization relying on donations of “gently used” baseball uniforms and equipment so underprivilege children may enjoy America’s national past time across the world.  The website addresses the organization’s four goals:

   •   To support the growth of baseball in the U.S. and internationally.
   •   To give kids equipment so they can get out, have fun and stay healthy.
   •   To teach kids important lessons through baseball, like teamwork and sportsmanship.
   •   To make friends across the world through America’s past time.

Being a fan of the game of baseball, I personally liked and approved what the organization is doing.  Enjoy the site!