And Another Winner!

We ran not one, but two competitions as part of our Digital Reading Week at the beginning of November! The lucky winner of our OverDrive competition was Sally Butler. Sally borrowed some ebooks to go on holiday and came home to find that she was the recipient of a shiny new Fire Tablet.

sally-butlerIt was great to hear that Sally has been using our OverDrive service since its inception in 2010 finding it especially useful when travelling. The beauty of it is that you can checkout new titles from anywhere whether you are in the South of France or the doctors waiting room!

New titles are added to OverDrive every two weeks meaning there is always something new to check out. If you don’t find anything you fancy remember that users can always recommend titles and authors using our Book Recommendation Form.

Green Pencil Awards 2016

Last week the Central Library hosted this year’s Green Pencil Award Ceremony when 20 finalists, their friends and families and other special guests came to the awards ceremony held in the Reference Library on Thursday 24th of November. Councillor Richard Lewis attended to hand out the prizes.

Photograph of Green Pencil Award

The 2016 finalists from left to right
Bethany Woodburn – Cargilfield School, Megan Rutherford – Bruntsfield Primary, Afra Schwannauer – Preston Street Primary, Jemma Cattanach – Bruntsfield Primary, Catherine Byrne – Cargilfield School, Alice McGuire – Hermitage Park Primary, Greta Grant – Leith Primary, Councillor Richard Lewis, Lily Chatwood – Leith Primary, Cara Campbell – Pentland Primary, Catriona Simpson – Preston Street Primary, Finlay Black – Cargilfield School, Blair Henderson – Clifton Hall School, Rachael Smyth – Davdison’s Mains Primary, Natalie Ruzgar – St Margaret’s Primary, Amy Brand – Oxgangs Primary, Samuel Joester – Wardie Primary, Rose Kinsler – Sciennes Primary, Seren McDougall – Bruntsfield Primary

This year the theme was ‘Scotland’s Glorious Gardens’, Edinburgh school pupils in the P4 to P7 age range were inspired by the many gardens, parks and green spaces that we are lucky enough to have, and to enjoy using, here in the City.

Photograph of Councillor Richard Lewis and Green Pencil Award winner

Councillor Richard Lewis congratulates the winner, Rachael Smyth from Davidson’s Mains Primary

The Award aims to promote literacy, in particular reading and creative writing and firing the imagination. It also helps raise awareness and encourages learning about nature and other important environmental topics.

Photography of Green Pencil Award

Rose Kinsler from Sciennes Primary reads her entry to the crowd

This is the ninth year the competition has run. This year’s competition was launched by the author Vivian French on September 1st at Central Children’s Library and Princes Street Gardens with pupils from Preston Street Primary School.

The Green Pencil Award

The Green Pencil Award

The night was a great success and we very much look forward to next year’s competition.

Art Library exhibition for December

The Art Library’s December exhibition is Every Woman Super Woman

Every Woman Super Woman is an exhibition of work by young Scottish women from Young Saheliya produced in partnership with Stills Centre for Photography and Edinburgh Art Festival.

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The exhibition celebrates a summer of creative workshops inspired by Ciara Phillips’ Every Woman commissioned by Edinburgh Art Festival and the Jo Spence exhibition at Stills. Also working with Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centre, workshops included photography, creative writing, blogging and female representation in the media.

Dazzle Ship 'Every Woman', by Ciara Phillips in Leith.

Dazzle Ship ‘Every Woman’, by Ciara Phillips at Leith. Image from http://www.capitalcollections.org.uk

The exhibition of portraits, explores self-expression through photography. Inspired by Jo Spence’s work, the group created characters to tell their own stories, drawing from personal experience, role models and fictional personalities.

This fantastic exhibition runs from 2 to 31 December.

Edinburgh’s Modern Architecture

Yesterday we blogged about Edinburgh’s historic architecture – the world-renowned architecture of its Medieval Old Town and Georgian New Town. But what of the city’s buildings and developments over the past 70 years – its so-called Post-war Architecture?

Our next Capital Collections exhibition examines Modern Architecture in Edinburgh. During the latter part of the 20th century, construction took place across Scotland on new homes, schools, tower blocks, roads, churches and in some cases, even whole new towns. There was a commitment to improve public health and tackle poor housing. After the austerity of the 1940s and 50s, new technologies and materials combined in a period of reconstruction.

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The pictures within the exhibition highlight buildings in Edinburgh constructed since 1945 that have been recognised as architecturally significant and in many instances, are statutory listed as having special architectural or historic interest. Modern architecture can be a contentious topic, loved and loathed by both critics and the public. However, the buildings here show structures representative of their time and architectural styles; buildings that perhaps haven’t been around long enough yet for their value to be appreciated by all…?

Edinburgh’s Historic Architecture

To mark the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design, we’ve dug into the Library’s archive and pulled out some fantastic examples of Edinburgh’s historic architecture dating from the early twentieth century all the way back to the sixteenth century.

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Register House by Robert Adam

The exhibition on Capital Collections highlights many significant buildings across Edinburgh’s World Heritage site by world-renowned architects. Amongst those represented are Robert Adam and his design for Edinburgh University’s Old College and Register House, William Henry Playfair’s Greek Doric design for the Royal Scottish Academy, and Sir Robert Rowand Anderson’s McEwan Hall and Catholic Apostolic Church in Broughton Street.

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Catholic Apostolic Church by Sir Robert Rowand Anderson

Browse online and see Edinburgh anew!

The Magic of Mathletics

Want to help your children or grandchildren improve their maths? Why not mathleticsget them signed up to use Mathletics through Edinburgh Libraries. Mathletics is a fantastic website that teaches children maths in a fun and addictive way. You sign them up at their Scottish school level so you know they will be learning exactly what they need for school. They can work towards “medals” and can compete against each other in online maths games.

mathletics-love-learning-featured-image-400pxThere are almost 5 million children of primary and secondary age using Mathletics around the world including many who use it in their schools. A study at the University of Oxford recently found that pupils regularly using Mathletics outperformed non-users in Primary 6 Standard Attainment Tests in terms of attainment and progress.

Many parents pay a subscription for their children to use Mathletics, but you just need to sign up through Edinburgh Libraries to use it for free.

And the winner is….

As part of our Digital Reading Week we ran a competition for BorrowBox users to win a iPad Mini and we are pleased to announce that our winner was Mrs Mary Oliver! Mary popped into the Central Library to collect her prize and stayed for a wee chat and a glamorous photo shoot! It was great to find out that Mary has been using our OverDrive and OneClickdigital services for the last couple of years and had recently started using BorrowBox too – “I find BorrowBox the easiest of the apps to use, within a couple of clicks you are listening to an audiobook”.

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Mary told us that she likes to use all of our downloadable audiobook services to get as wide a range of titles as possible – “Romances are my favourites. I listen to audiobooks in bed at night, saves me disturbing my husband with rustling pages and the light on!!”. She is also a fan of ebooks too, preferring to read these during the day, and especially enjoying titles by Maeve Binchy. It turned out that Mary was a familiar face as she had used our Tuesday afternoon drop-in sessions in the Central Library for help when she was having problems downloading books and this was also where she’d been introduced to BorrowBox.

BorrowBox is our newest downloadable audiobook service and has a growing collection of bestsellers including titles by James Patterson, David Baldacci, Alexander McCall Smith and Kate Aitkinson. It does have the easiest the use app ever and you can always renew your book even if someone else has has put a hold on it.

Thanks again to Mary for coming in and having her photo taken – we hope she’ll have lots of fun downloading ebooks and audiobooks with her new iPad!