Calling All Salamanders (Frogs and Toads, Too)!

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Do you have some experience in scientific identification? Do you mind playing in the mud? The Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation Division is seeking volunteers to survey salamanders.

Come to an informational meeting at the Leslie Science Center on February 25, 2007 from 10-Noon. And if you want to survey frogs and toads as well as salamanders, stay for the afternoon session from 1:30-3.

Admission price is $10. Registration is required and due by February 20.

For more information call (734) 996-3266.

Exam Bits - Test Prep

Preparing for school exams? Is everything checked out at the library? Try Learning Express Library on our website.

If your Library card is registered through "My Account" you have access to the databases from home. Login with your username and password. Choose "Research" file at the top of the page. Choose "Learning Express Library" by name. You will find practice exercises for TOEFL, Civil Service, Citizenship, GRE, SAT, and more. You will also find standardized testing for elementary, middle, and high school ages. Study Up!

Kid Bits - Regarding the Klises

The Kate and Sarah Klise have put out the next book in their middle school series of history/mystery adventures with Regarding the Bathrooms: a privy to the past. Other titles the sisters write and illustrate are Regarding the Trees: a splintered saga rooted in secrets; Regarding the Fountain. These are great fun for creative minds and school-system intrigue.

Moomin!

Join Moomin, the beautiful Snorkmaiden, and their friends as they send bad language (with legs) to Aunt Jane, encounter exploding pancakes, and introduce pirates to gardening. Tove Jansson has created a rare treasure that speaks to all generations and all ages. Moomin sums up Jansson's philosophy best when he tells his friend Sniff:

"I only want to live in peace, plant potatoes, and dream!"

Jansson first introduced the Moomins (Scandinavian troll-creatures that resemble white hippopotami) in books that she wrote and illustrated, beginning in 1945 with the book The Moomins and the Great Flood. More Moomintroll books followed, including Comet in Moominland, Finn Family Moomintroll, and Moominpappa's memoirs. These were so popular that she was approached by the London Evening News to do a daily comic strip featuring the Moomin characters. Drawn and Quarterly has released (for the first time in North America) a collection of these strips. This first volume includes four adventures: Brigands, Family Life, Moomin on the Riviera and Moomin's Desert Island.

Kid Bits - Time Warp Trio

John Scieszka writes one more book for the Time Warp Trio series. Like to travel? Like Time Warps? Read Marco? Polo! and land in 13th century China. Kublai Khan! Xanadu! Marco Polo! Whooa!!

John Mellencamp's Freedom's Road

Freedom's Road by John Mellencamp debuted at number five this week on the Billboard 200 Chart. This is his first top ten cd in ten years. That last top ten cd was Mr. Happy Go Lucky.

Favorite Picks for Black History Month by Tahira

In honor of Black History Month here is a list of my favorite books with African American main characters:

Picture Books
Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold
Jamaica’s Find by Jaunita Havill
Sweet Music in Harlem by Debbie Taylor

Fiction
Bud Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
The Watson’s Go to Burmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis
The Stories Julian Tells by Ann Cameron
Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy by Gary Schmidt
Starring Grace by Mary Hoffman

Its freezing, its snowing ... Time to think of your garden?

Even as winter is deepening, dedicated gardeners are beginning to think about and plan for their spring and summer gardening activities. To heighten environmental awareness Project Grow is partnering with the Michigan Groundwater Stewardship program to offer a series of special classes to gardeners designed to help protect groundwater and the local watershed. The classes are free and will be held on Wednesday evenings from 7 to 8:30 pm. in the Leslie Science Center Nature House. The classes will include topics such as Rain Gardens (March 7), Green Roofs (March 14), and Organic Lawn Care (March 21). Additional classes in April will be offered to help gardeners with visual impairments. These will take place on Wednesday April 11 and April 18 at 3:00 p.m. Applications for Project Grow's Community Gardens will also soon be available. To register call 996-3169.

Blue October: Foiled... Again?

Blue OctoberBlue October

Blue October is coming to Saint Andrews Hall in Detroit on Saturday, Feb. 2nd @ 8pm.

And guess what? AADL has their latest album, Foiled. If you like The Fray, then I think you'll enjoy Blue October. :-)

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