Welcome back! Westlake’s 50th anniversary!

Welcome to 2019-2020 school year!  The library has been here since the very beginning, ready to help!  In fact, here’s Westlake’s FIRST librarian, Sarah Widener, helping students with headphones!

To celebrate the 50th anniversary, join us on the first day for a Sixties photo booth and check out the photographs around the library celebrating 1969!

Just like then, the library was a place for students to hang out, get help with technology(we had the first reverse screen projector where the bathroom is now), find good books, and get help from librarians.

The technology may have changed, but the library’s goal to serve students (and help teachers) hasn’t changed!

So welcome to 2019!  Have a great year!

Welcome back! 2018-2019!

If you find yourself stressed with a project, a bibliography, needing a quiet place to study, editing a video, using a Green Screen, or more, let us help relieve your stress and help you with your project.  Just ASK for help and we’ll do our best to get you started or find the answer!

Part of a community

Thanks to being part of a community!

Last week, the library set up a letter writing station in the library to support the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

We appreciate you taking the time to send your thoughts and concerns to students in Florida.

Great visit with Susan Dennard!

Thanks to Susan Dennard for the great visit to WHS.  Susan shared her journey from marine biologist studying arctic sharks to young adult author — a path that led from the frozen tundra to Europe and to a writing career.   Susan shared influences on her work, like Avatar and role-playing video games, which are evident in the world building of her new series Witchlands.  She shared her trials getting to a successful book series, her writing habits, and who knew–her favorite animal–the octopus!

We’ll have Susan’s book on sale for the next week, so drop by the library if you would like an autographed copy. Thanks Susan!

Author Susan Dennard February 20th!

Susan Dennard, author of the Witchland series, will be joining us on February 20th!  Her newest book, Sightwitch, just came out a week ago!  Come by the library to get an autographed copy of her book or to purchase a book ahead of time!  Dennard, you may know, is the author of the Something Strange and Deadly series also. She’ll be talking about her book and the writing process.  She treats her writing like a business but that doesn’t stop her from slaying darkspawn on her Xbox.   Check out more about the Witchland series on the website, take a quiz, or check out maps from the book.

She”ll be speaking 2nd period in the NGC Learning Commons to classes, but if you’d like to attend, just let us know!  Find out more about how she went from marine biologist to young adult author!   Her books are available for purchase in the library through Tuesday.



Join us for 12 Days of Stress Relief!

Drop by the library any day the next 12 days for some stress relief!  We will have treats, Jenga contests, puzzles, Google cardboard to experiment with, and more!   And be sure to say hello to Ruckus, our therapy dog, who will be here to greet you!

Welcome back!

Welcome back to the Year of the Eclipse!  The library was busy already on Monday hosting Eclipse fun, like a trivia contest and green screen photos and Moon Pies for the teachers.  The winner of our Eclipse trivia contest was Qingshi Tan!  Congratulations!

Join us throughout the year for trivia contests, Banned Books Week, National Playdoh day, Pi Day and author visits!

And check out our new books and bookmark recommendations!  Welcome back 2017-2018!

Checking out our new Green Screen!

Mr. Grigg meets a fisherman

We introduced our new Green Screen during National Library Week with a photobooth!  Check out some of the teacher photos below!  The screen is set up and ready to go–Spanish classes have already been using it!  If you haven’t tried the DoInk Green Screen app, ask at the front desk of the library!

The counselors celebrate Peeps!

Abby meets a minion!

News, fake news, and being a good info consumer

Fake news has been in the “real news” lately.   How do we tell the difference between the two?

There’s a difference between fake news and news with a bias.  News with a bias is presenting the news through a particular lens or filter.  Fake news is news that is fabricated to generate “clicks” by writing stories that go viral.

What are some ways you can become a more careful reader of the news (or help your family members do the same?)

Librarian Joyce Valenza has some great suggestions!

  • Check the URL.  Is it a real one or does it just look “similar” to a real site?
  • Just using Google may not help.  Fake news stories spread like wildfire, so just using Google to decide may not help.
  • “Suspect the sensational.”  If it appears to be outlandish, it is possibly untrue.  Be skeptical.  Check it against several well known mainstream news sources to see if they are reporting the story also.  Conspiracy stories often are often used as “click bait” to get users to a site for money making purposes.
  • Verify the story.   Check Snopes.com or Factcheck.org to see if they are flagging this story as false.
  • Decide if this story has a built in bias.  Does it seem aimed at readers with a particular view point?  This might indicate a fake news story, or it might just be a biased story.  Again, look at the url or “about” page.
  • Go back to the original. If a news story mentions a study or a poll, try to find the original yourself.  Did that study have a bias? Does it even exist? Is it from a recognized reputable source?
  • Think before you RT or “Share.”   Did you do take any of the steps above first?  Don’t spread fake news yourself!

When you share more reliable stories, you appear more reliable to others!   You can help stop fake news in its track by pointing it out to others or refusing to reshare it.

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