Saturday, February 17, 2018

Book Review: Disappeared

DISAPPEARED by Francisco X. Stork tells the powerful story of siblings navigating a world of kidnapping and crime in Juarez, Mexico.
When her best friend is kidnapped, Sara uses her skills as a journalist to attract attention to her friend’s case despite death threats to herself and her family. At the same time, Sara’s brother Emiliano faces the question of whether to take the easy path into the world of crime or work hard to establish a legal business. Stork’s well-developed characters and authentic situations will draw young adults into this suspenseful story.
Librarians will find this to be a popular addition to the growing number of thoughtful, coming-of-age novels focusing on timely issues related to crime and politics along the American-Mexican border. Although the setting is different than Stork’s other novels, fans will quickly become immersed in this fast-paced thriller.
Published on September 26, 2017 by Arthur A. Levine, an imprint of Scholastic. ARC courtesy of the publisher.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Website Review: Chicago Project

THE CHICAGO PROJECT is an interactive, immersive project exploring Chicago’s history.
Incorporating photo, film, and sound elements, this website currently shares four stories. The Century of Progress project is a virtual reality experience connected with the 1933 World’s Fair. The Valentine’s Day Massacre uses photos and documents to bring an historical site to life through virtual reality. The Eastland Disaster explores a famous ship disaster through historical photos and newsreel film in an augmented and virtual reality environment. Finally, the Spaces project examines famous architectural photography.
Librarians will find this website serves multiple uses. First, it provides an excellent example of virtual reality, augmented reality, and multimedia. Second, it provides a fascinating way to explore history.
To visit the website, go to

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Digital Spotlight: Pioneering Women of American Architecture

PIONEERING WOMEN OF AMERICAN ARCHITECTURE profiles fifty women how have made significant contributions to architecture in America.
Contents: The easy-to-access collection is organized alphabetically by last name, chronologically by lifetimes, and pictorially through architectural drawings and photographs. Each entry includes background information, a well-researched biographical article, illustrations depicting the architect and her work, and a bibliography.
Classroom Connections: Teachers will find that high-quality articles to be useful for informational reading activities. Consider using the collection while studying pioneering woman across disciplines.
Featured Digital Objects:
Van Rensselaer
To visit the collection, go to

Monday, February 12, 2018

Digital Spotlight: Shakespeare Documented

SHAKESPEARE DOCUMENTED is a comprehensive online exhibition documenting items published during his lifetime.
Contents: A collaboration among the Bodleian Libraries, British Library, Shakespeare Trust, UK National Archives, and others, this collection includes nearly 500 primary source materials, this online project shares manuscripts that refer to Shakespeare during his lifetime, books printed during his lifetime, Stationers’ Register entries, printed editions of works, and documents connected to family members.
Classroom Connections: What makes this collection unique is the focus on his socio-economic status and profession during his lifetime. Use this collection to help students better understand Shakespeare’s daily life.
Featured Digital Objects:
Personal Property
Contemporary Accounts
To visit the collection, go to

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Book Review: Dog Man Series

DOG MAN is a new series of graphic novels for children by Dav Pilkey featuring a dog-headed police officer.
Like Captain Underpants who was created by George and Harold, Dog Man is an unusual superhero made by a pair of friends. In the first book, this “crime-biting canine” is created when a police officer and his police dog are combined to save both lives. The resulting new superhero has some quirks, but he quickly gets to work capturing criminals like Petey the Cat and other evil doers. Two additional books including Unleashed and A Tale of Two Kittens explore stories featuring evil Petey the Cat. The latest addition to the series introduces Dog Man’s new sidekick Cat Kid. Together they become an effective crime fighting team.
Librarians will find a huge following for this hilarious new series. With endless jokes focusing on the relationship between dogs and cats, this new series will appeal to pet lovers along with fans of Captain Underpants.
Published by Graphix, an imprint of Scholastic. ARC courtesy of the publisher.

Friday, February 09, 2018

Website Review: Type Terms

TYPE TERMS is a website explaining terminology related to typography.
The website’s entry page displays the word “terminology” with active links for over a dozen key terms. Each link provides an animated visual and a definition. Users can then return to the menu or navigate forward or backward through additional terms.
Librarians will find this website an interesting addition to the computer science curriculum. Weave the website into a lesson focusing on word processing, page layout, and typography.
To visit the website, go to

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Website Review: Unfairy Tales

UNFAIRY TALES is a collection of animated stories exploring the plight of Syrian refugees.
Produced for UNICEF, the website contains three sections: Malak and the Boat, Mustafa Goes for a Walk, and The Story of Ivine and Pillow. In addition, videos show the children telling their stories.
Librarians will find this website to be useful in talking with children about issues regarding child refugees. Students will be particularly interested in how the children narrated the stories themselves.

Monday, February 05, 2018

Website Review: I Spy (with my Five Eyes)

I SPY (WITH MY FIVE EYES) is an interactive website documentary focusing on global privacy issues.
This engaging documentary explores the tensions among citizens, governments, and intelligence groups related to government surveillance. Specifically, it examines the Five Eyes Alliance surveillance program established during the Cold War that continues today. Each of the five interactive video chapters focuses a specific aspect of government surveillance such as cyberwarfare and the search for terrorists. Each video includes interactive elements such as embedded questions and additional content. Further information is also available.
Librarians will find this interactive documentary to be an effective way to teach high school students about global privacy issues. Social studies teachers will also be interested in weaving the content into their social issues and history curriculum.
To visit the website, go to

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Book Review: Bizzy Mizz Lizzie

BIZZY MIZZ LIZZIE by David Shannon is a timely picture book that encourages children to “stop and smell the flowers”.
Bizzy Mizz Lizzie is so busy that she never stops to relax. When Mizz Lizzie’s over-scheduled life catches up with her, she learns a lesson about the importance of taking a break to enjoy the simple things in life.
Librarians will find this colorfully illustrated picture book to be useful in classrooms to address the importance of a balanced life. Pair it with a discussion about making choices.
Published by Scholastic on October 10, 2017. ARC courtesy of the publisher.

Friday, February 02, 2018

Website Review: Black in History

BLACK IN HISTORY is a blog that highlights the accomplishments of influencers.
This attractive, and easy-to-use website features Black Americans from the past and present. Each entry includes a name, photo, overview, and short biographical sketch. An archive provides easy access to all the entries. Tags are used for each entry making the blog easy to search. In addition, readers can filter entries by subject such as medicine and music. Users are encouraged to submit their own entries.
Librarians will find this website to be a useful addition to Black History Month activities. However more importantly, it provides resources about influential Black Americans that can be woven into the history curriculum as a whole. Encourage children to write their own short entries and submit them to the blog.
To visit the website, go to