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sobczakd's Blog

On Being a Grandmother

Eye of My HeartEye of My Heart is an emotional and engaging collection of essays by 27 writers who describe how the love they feel for their grandchildren is elevated to a whole new level. For some, grandmotherhood is parenting a grandchild; while others welcome the opportunity to feel young again and be indulgent. These are real stories that resonate true in today's busy, complicated world.

Willa Chen, a Perfect 3!!!

Willa Chen17-year old Canton High School senior, Willa Chen, achieved perfect scores on not 1, not 2 but 3 college success predictor tests. It is so rare to ace all three exams, the ACT, SAT and PSAT, that the non-profit organization, College Board, doesn't keep track of those statistics. Willa, who has a 4.33 GPA, has been accepted at UM and MIT, but plans to attend Princeton in the fall to study applied math or computers. Props to you, Willa!

It takes a long time to grow an old friend

Girls From AmesJeffrey Zaslow, columnist for the Wall Street Journal and co-author of "The Last Lecture," has written a journalistic account of the lifelong friendship between 11 girls born in Ames, Iowa, in 1962-1963. The book, "The Girls from Ames: A Story of Women & a Forty-Year Friendship," describes the turning points in women's friendships and why women, more than men, hang onto their longterm friends.

Marking a Grim Anniversary

ColumbineOn Monday, April 20th, the nation marks the 10th anniversary of the Columbine school shooting. Ten years ago teenagers and fellow students, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, walked into their high school killing 13 people and wounding 23 others before turning their guns on themselves. It is the 4th deadliest school shooting in U. S. history and sparked a fierce debate on gun control laws and school violence.

It Sucked and Then I Cried

It Sucked and Then I CriedAnother book featured on Monday's Oprah was blogger Heather Armstrong's memoir of why committing herself to a mental hospital to overcome her postpartum depression was the best decision for her and her family. It Sucked and Then I Cried is a brave cautionary tale about crossing over that invisible line where everything changes and it only gets worse. But most of all, it's a celebration of a love so big it can break your heart into a million pieces.

Sippy Cups Are Not For Chardonnay

Sippy CupsOn Monday April 6th, comedian and tv writer/producer Stephanie Wilder-Taylor is scheduled to appear on the Oprah show. Her memoir, Sippy Cups Are Not For Chardonnay describes the author's transformation into the perils of parenting. From sharing parental responsibilities to the science of the Diaper Genie, this book combines laugh-out-loud humor with sassy wit and is a refreshing, honest look at modern motherhood.

Hurry...Reading Month is Ending Soon!

Book WhispererDonalyn Miller, Teacher Magazine blogger and author, couldn't find a book that demonstrated her love for reading to her students so she decided to write one herself. It's a shame we aren't born with the desire to love books. We have to discover the world of books on our own, or from parents and teachers. Many of us have cherished childhood memories of visiting the library and happily leaving with an armful of books.

Fifteen Miles on the Erie Canal

This was chorus of a song titled Low Bridge, Everyone Down written in 1905. Constructed between 1817 to 1825, the Erie Canal was the first transportation route between New York City and the Great Lakes. Before modern-day construction equipment, "The Ditch That Made New York Rich," was mostly made on the backs of Irish immigrants. Bond of Union, is a fascinating account of how one of the greatest achievements in U.S. History was built.

Top Test-Taking Tips

College StudyIn Sunday's USA Weekend Magazine, ParentSmart writer, Reyhaneh Fathieh, listed tips parents can teach their kids before they take the big test. The Library has a huge selection of study guides for all students.

Longer School Year?

Arne DuncanEducation Secretary Arne Duncan is interested in many ideas to boost student performance.  Keeping kids in school longer is one option under consideration by the former chief of Chicago Public Schools. Not an easy task given the uncertainty of the tough economic times and the drastic budget cuts many states are facing. Read more on Secretary Duncan's interview with CNN.

You're Either In or Out

Teacher StudentColleges are tweaking their methods of informing students of whether or not they'll be coming to their campus that fall. In today's U.S.

Feminine Mystique

Feminine MystiqueOn this day (February 19) in 1963, Betty Friedan published The Feminine Mystique, a call for   women to achieve their full potential. Her book generated an enormous response and revitalized the women's movement in the U.S.

3 New Books in Social Science Make Top 10

Next 100 Years#10: The Next 100 Years presents a fascinating picture of what lies ahead. George Friedman turns his eye on the future by offering a lucid, highly readable forecast of the changes we can expect around the world during the 21st century.

He's Just Not That Into You

This same-titled-book-turned-movie is based on a line delivered by one of the characters in a Sex and the City episode, "Pick-A-Little, Talk-A-Little," from 2003. It makes a single-woman wonder: if I like the guy, why is he sending me mixed messages?

Our Animal Friends

While dogs are still the most popular pets in the United States, these days people are befriending everything from turtles to mice. Whether you currently have an animal friend or are just thinking about adopting one, we have compiled a list of resources of interest to pet lovers of all types.

Pet Care

Aquariums for dummies by Maddy Hargrove and Mic Hargrove

An essential guide to choosing your marine tropical fish by Dick Mills

Getting to know your hamster by Gill Page