Student Book Club

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Do you enjoy reading new books and talking about them with your peers?  Great, because Andersen Library is hosting its very first book club for students!  The first 15 students to sign up get a free hardcover copy of the book, I Am Malala.  To read more about Nobel Peace Prize winning author, check out  this review from the Washington Post.

Meetings will be held on Sept. 29, Oct. 6, & Oct. 13 from 5:00pm-6:00pm and will be located by Andersen Library’s big screen tv area.  The setting will be relaxed, so if you were unable to read as far as you would have liked, no worries! Participate as much as you are willing or able. Light snacks will be provided for attendees.

Sign up now! 

Have questions? Contact Rebecca at for more information.


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New Online Research Databases

We’ve made some helpful additions to our suite of research databases this summer:

  • Data-Planet Statistical Datasets provides access to an extensive repository of standardized and structured statisical data. The repository contains more than 18.9 billion data points from more than 70 source organizations providing access to data presented in charts, maps, graphs, and table form. This database comes to us courtesy of UW-Madison’s subscription.
  • ebrary Academic Complete Collection offers ebooks from trusted publishers in all academic subject areas as well as powerful research tools. Books may be checked out or downloaded to devices.
  • Statista offers data on over 80,000 topics from over 18,000 sources. Categorized into 21 market sectors it provides users with direct access to quantitative data on media,business, finance, politics and a variety of other areas of interest or markets.

Of course, with cuts to the Library’s acquisitions budget, we also have to say goodbye to several other resources:

  • EBSCO eBook Academic Collection was swapped for the ebrary product (above) which has similar content at a lower cost
  • Journal Citation Reports was cancelled due to a high cost-per-use
  • PrivCo was cancelled because we lost our campus funding partners
  • Mosby’s Nursing Consult was a UW-Madison resource that was cancelled

For a complete list of the Library’s databases, see the Articles & Databases page.

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New Stuff Tuesday – July 14, 2015

Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution That's Transforming Education

Creative Schools:
The Grassroots Revolution That’s Transforming Education
by Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica
LB1590.5 .R64 2015  New Arrivals, 2nd floor

Since achieving international acclaim for his 2006 TED talk, “Do Schools Kill Creativity?” Robinson continues to make the case for change driven by more creativity in teaching and in schools. If the education of the 19th and 20th centuries are modeled on the interests of industrialization, he makes the case that the 21st century economy demands a paradigm shift in education. He asserts that “creativity in any field may involve deep factual knowledge and high levels of practical skill” – rigour that is exactly what children in our new economy need. To illustrate how we can make change happen in education and how we can make it last, he draws on examples from a once failing and now successful middle school in Georgia, to the Boston Arts Academy which demonstrates the transformational power of the arts, to the depth of exploration and learning that homeschooling can potentially afford.

As an introduction to Robinson’s ideas, view the creatively presented Animate, Changing Education Paradigms:

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Modern Romance for Summer

Modern Romance

Modern Romance:
An Investigation
by Aziz Ansari with Eric Klinenberg
PN6231 .D3 A57 2015
Browsing Collection, 2nd floor

I’m taking a somewhat wayward look at summer reading today for those of you inclined towards nonfiction. I’m more of a fiction person myself, but do sometimes venture beyond the purely imaginative. Today is one of those days.

You may know Aziz Ansari from his unforgettable role as Tom Haverford on Parks and Recreation, his other television and film acting, or his years as a veteran standup comedian. He now adds a new notch in his funny belt as he finds his way into authorhood with his first book, which was co-written with experienced author Eric Klinenberg of New York University, a Professor of Sociology and the Director of the Institute for Public Knowledge. It is a combination of humorous impressions and serious interpretations of the world of love.

Like much of Ansari’s comedy, this book takes an hilarious look at contemporary relationships, everything from searching for a soulmate to settling down. It incorporates the effect of technology on the shaping of our relationships and also the differences between courtships of the past and present. You may be wondering what Klinenberg has to do with this. Well, he adds a scholarly bent and supportive data. Together the two men designed a large scale, worldwide research project, analyzed behavioral data and surveys, and created an active online research forum on Reddit. They even enlisted the world’s leading social scientists, including Andrew Cherlin, Eli Finkel, Helen Fisher, Sheena Iyengar, Barry Schwartz, Sherry Turkle, and Robb Willer. The insights gathered from this research informs the text. I don’t know how much impact this book will have on serious scholarship, but it certainly puts the fun in fundamentals of dating.

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T3: Online Maker Camp

Maker Camp

Learn something new and boost your creativity this summer at Maker Camp, a free, online summer camp where you can work on a new project every day. Hosted by Maker Media, this virtual camp has daily activities centered around week-long themes. Although originally intended for school-aged children, the activities are fun for anyone! The activities for this summer range from crafting home-made instruments to film-making, agricultural projects, and the science of new materials. (See the whole list of themes here.)

In addition to creating projects in your own home, you can also share in the fun with other camp attendees virtually through Google+ and other online spaces.

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If you’re looking for a good time, Savory Sounds this Thursday might be just the thing! Steve Meisner, award-winning accordian player, polka musician, and composer, will provide the sounds at the Birge Fountain (outside the Arts Alliance building) on Thurs., July 9, from 11:30am-12:45pm. The SweetSpot will provide the savory (lunch), unless you take your own!

cover of Polka HappinessAnd if you can’t make that, or just want to keep the polka thing going, Andersen Library can help! Search Research@UWW to find books like A passion for polka: Old-time ethnic music in America (3rd-floor Main Collection, ML3551 .G696 1992) and Polka happiness (3rd-floor Main Collection, GV1796 .P55 K45 1992) or recordings like Deep polka dance music from the Midwest (2nd-floor Browsing Collection, CDs, FOL Dee), which includes contribution from the Steve Meisner Band! Or learn to dance the polka with some helpful online sites like How to Polka (10 steps)


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New Stuff Tuesday – July 6, 2015

America's Founding Fruit: The Cranberry in a New Environment

Spike Lee:
Finding the Story and Forcing the Issue
by Jason P. Vest
PN1998.3.L44 V47 2014
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

Spike Lee built a reputation for himself as a film maker by tackling systemic issues of race, poverty, and society in a way that no other director was doing in his time. In Vest’s book about Lee and his films, prominent themes from Lee’s movies are critiqued and deconstructed. While the book at face value is a film criticism, it explores many issues of Lee’s films at great length. Each chapter focuses on one of the major film motifs that Lee is known for and how they played out in various films that he created. Much has been written about Lee’s work from the popular lens, but Vest’s critique gives Spike Lee’s “joints” a much needed academic viewpoint.

Check out Lee’s ground breaking film Do The Right Thing from the Andersen Library. A movie that Barack and Michelle Obama went to see on their first date.

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Celebrate the 4th of July / Andersen Library’s hours

Andersen Library will be closed on Sunday, July 5th, 2015, because of the holiday weekend. Of course, online access to databases (including articles), the library holdings listed in Books, media and more (UW Whitewater) (including ebooks) and Ask a Librarian online assistance via chat will be available.

Flag and fireworks imageBut if you’re taking a break from studies, you can celebrate the holiday!

Whitewater’s Family Festival runs Thurs.-Sun., July 2-5. The schedule includes a parade at 10am on Saturday, the 4th (parade route map), preceded by the Whippet City Mile along the same route and starting at about 9:50am. The Festival also includes midway games, food (pickle on a stick!), music, the annual car show (on the 4th), Minneiska ski show (on the 4th, after the parade, on Cravath Lake), fireworks, and more. There’s also the Whitewater Classic Drum Corps International tour event (on the 5th in UWW’s Perkins Stadium).

Many nearby communities will be celebrating as well, e.g., Milton offers “Taste of Milton,” Family Kickball Tournament (on the 3rd), carnival, parade (1pm on the 4th), music, softball, and more. The Hoard Historical Museum in Fort Atkinson will host its annual ice cream social on the 4th from 1-3pm with live music. Mmm…cookies.

Enjoy. Happy Fourth!

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New Stuff Tuesday – June 30, 2015

America's Founding Fruit: The Cranberry in a New Environment

America’s Founding Fruit:
The Cranberry in a New Environment
by Susan Playfair
SB383 .P53 2014
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

Mmm, cranberries. Their tangy flavor is iconically American as they are one of only three fruits native to North America that are cultivated today (p. 2). For many of us, the holidays wouldn’t be complete without a savory cranberry dish. So what happens to our beloved cranberry if its habitat heats up? Susan Playfair talks to cranberry growers and researchers from across the country to find out. Along the way she investigates the history of cranberry cultivation, introduces readers to the growers and their families, highlights the health benefits of the fruit, and explores the towns and festivals that have cropped up around cranberry bogs.

If the science and history don’t interest you, the recipes at the end of the book might tempt you. You can’t go wrong with tasty treats like Cranberry-Carrot Cake with Pecan Frosting or Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Maple Syrup, Bacon and Cranberries. The very brave might try Blancmange with Cranberry Coulis — if that sounds less than appetizing to you, it’s probably because you’re a Midwesterner and not a Yankee — in Wisconsin we call it cranberry jello!

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The Book Thief

Currently residing on the New York Times Young Adult Best Sellers list for 121 weeks, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak has staying power. While not light or new, it would still be an awesome summer read. Originally published in Australia in 2005, it has regained popularity more recently with the release of a movie based on the book in 2013. You can borrow the DVD using UW Request. (You will need to sign in to do UW Request.)

This lengthy and leisurely story is set in small town Nazi Germany and follows the life of a young illiterate girl, Liesel, from when she’s fostered at age nine into her teenage years. Her foster father encourages her to learn to read, which she in turn does, and her life radically changes as she catches the bug. Her book-stealing and story-telling abilities help keep the horrors of war at bay for her new family, the Jewish man hiding in their home, and their neighbors. Although narrated by Death, who likes to foretell the future, not all is doom and gloom. There are sparks of many emotions throughout that help keep things interesting. The novel has received high ratings from reviewers.

If you’d like to read an excerpt, here is one from Read magazine UWW access only, another from the Readers Read website, and a third from the Scribd website. An audio excerpt direct from Random House can be found on the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust website. I think reading one or more will draw you into this moving story, it did for me.

Oh, and by the way the audiobook on CD and other print copies can be borrowed using UW Request. (You will need to sign in to do UW Request.)

I hope you enjoy reading this book. If you’ve read it feel free to share your comments below.

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