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Showing posts from October, 2012

About that PowerPoint Presentation!

PowerPoint presentations are ubiquitous!  How many of us have sat through excruciatingly boring, not to mention outright bad, presentations? Slept through any presentations? Walked out of a presentation thinking it was a complete waste of time?  So what can you do to avoid similar predicaments when creating your own PowerPoint presentation?  Read on for some helpful tips on ways to create a dynamic and professional presentation that is easy to understand and conveys your message effectively.

Before you start planning your presentation, know your audience! Are you doing a presentation to a group of seniors about the benefits of exercise? Or, are you trying to get support for your proposal from your bosses and other company bigwigs? Or, are you simply trying to motivate your team to excel in a project that's close to your heart? Whether you are trying to promote a cause or sell a product, the key element is to know your audience so that you can tailor your content and your presenta…

Books on the Supreme Court of the United States and the Justices

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The Supreme Court of the United States has started its newest term on October 1; each new term begins on the first Monday of October.  The Supreme Court consists of the Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices.

The current Chief Justice is John Roberts.

Of the eight Associate Justices, two are from New Jersey, Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito.

There are three women Associate Justices, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan.

The remaining three Associate Justices are Anthony Kennedy, Stephen Breyer, and Clarence Thomas.

Besides books written about and by the Judges the library also has a number of books about the history of the Supreme Court, high profile cases, and other constitutional and law related topics.

Here are a few titles:

The Supreme Court: a C-SPAN book featuring the justices in their own words
Summary:  This book grew out of an historic opportunity to interview all of the living Supreme Court justices for a C-SPAN feature documentary about the Court, the …

New Tech You May Not Have Heard About, Yet

New tech gadgets that become all the rage often start off as specialized products years in advance (who remembers the Tablet PC before the iPad?), so it is fun to rake a look at some oddball tech items that you may not be running out to buy in their current form, but that could have an impact on the hot products a few years from now.

Lytro Light-Field Camera – This tiny, square camera looks more like a child’s kaleidoscope toy than an electronic device, yet it may contain the most advanced imaging chip in a digital camera.  Instead of relying on tradition photography methods of focusing mirrors or lenses to record an image in a visual field, the Lytro chip records all of the points of light, allowing the user to choose the depth of field (focus) after the picture is taken.  The camera basically lets you snap one picture and then use the supplied software to create multiple pictures from the original, all with different focal points.  Since it is so new, there is only one model with li…

Get Crafty with Mother Nature

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With the oppressive heat of summer behind us, autumn is a great time to enjoy the cooler weather and take a nature walk with your child. During your walk be sure to gather leaves, acorns, and other natural materials to make a Nature Walk Wreath (Craft adapted from: holiday-kids-crafts.com).

You will need:



•Leaves, acorns, and sticks collected from your nature walk
•One paper plate
•Scissors
•String or ribbon
•Glue
•Hole puncher
•Crayons or markers

1.Cut out center of paper plate and punch a hole in the top.



2.Thread string or ribbon through the hole and tie. Color the paper plate as desired.



3.Glue on leaves, acorns, and other materials collected from your nature walk.





While your Nature Walk Wreath is drying, snuggle up with your child and read one of these great books about autumn:


- Miss Liz

Books to Get You Thinking

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It is fifty years since John F. Kennedy’s Presidency. He became President at a critical time in history. It was the tumultuous era of the sixties, the time of the Civil Rights Movement in America, the time of the Cold War, and of Vietnam.  During his brief but eventful tenure as President he made an indelible mark on the social fabric and political landscape of those times. He brought new dynamism to America’s space exploration program, witnessing Alan Shepard Jr. become the first American to travel into space.  Kennedy’s assassination in 1963 shocked the nation, has touched generations and changed the course of history. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s Presidency several interesting books have been published. The Mercer County Library System offers readers a collection of titles that will take them through a journey into America’s past and is certain to fascinate history buffs of all shades.

Listening In: The Secret White House Recordings of John F. Kennedy b…

Meet Your Next Favorite Book

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This is the slogan on the homepage of my new favorite website, Goodreads.com.  Have you seen it?  Have you used it?   Let me tell you about it.

Essentially it is a book lover’s site.  You can follow your friends in what they are reading, make new friends and see what they are reading, check out reviews, find leads for new reading material and all of your Goodreads friends can follow your book adventures too.  Over 10 million people have discovered it since its launch in 2007.  If you have used Facebook then the site will have a familiar feel.  If not, you’ll still find Goodreads.com to be fun and user friendly.

It doesn’t cost anything to join or use.  The site will only need your name and an email address to get you started.  You have the opportunity to develop your “about me” section and add a photo at any time.
Now the fun starts!   You can create “read” “currently reading” and “to read” bookshelves.  After finishing a book you can write a review.  You can read other users’ revie…

Teen books that adults will love, too

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The merits of Young Adult books have received much debate in recent years with the genre’s publishing explosion. The Twilight series, following the Harry Potter phenomena, transformed adults into impassioned lovers of Teen and Tween literature.  Where do these readers go, now that those series have come to an end?  Some may be eagerly reading, J.K. Rowlings first foray into adult fiction, The Casual Vacancy, which came out last week.

However, there are many other books written and promoted for teens that an adult will love.  Any of these titles would be a great way to dive back into Young Adult books.

Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
This is book— and series—has created a lot of excitement recently, especially after the movie came out earlier this year.  It’s a great one that simply has to be on the list (certainly on my list).  Twenty-four teenagers are forced by The Capital into a competition to kill each other until only one remains standing, gaining a great amount of food and fame …

Traditional Rhymes for Babies

At the Hopewell Branch Library we offer a baby time program for children ages birth to 2 years and their caregivers.  The program introduces rhythmic and repetitive rhymes and songs to simulate babies and encourage language development. Each week we use a mixture of bouncing rhymes, tickle rhymes, finger plays, and action songs to create a fun interactive program. Here are some of our favorites:

Smile
I can make my baby smile
My baby smile, my baby smile
I can make my baby smile,
When I tickle her toes*
(*Repeat with nose, tummy, feet…)

The Kissy Game
(Kiss baby as you introduce different body parts)
Kissy, kissy fingers,
Kissy, kissy toes,
Kissy, kissy baby
On your Kissy, kissy nose.

I love to kiss your fingers,
I love to kiss your toes,
I love to kiss my baby
On her kissy, kissy nose.

Criss Cross (with the baby in your lap repeat these words and actions)
Criss, Cross, Applesauce (Draw an “X” with your finger on baby’s back)
Spiders crawling up your back (Crawl your fingers up the chil…

Table in a Slide ... in PowerPoint!

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As I have written in a previous blog, Table it! Inserting a Table in Word, there are numerous benefits in using a table to display your data.  Whether the data is in a Word document or in a PowerPoint slide, displaying it in a table is a great way to organize your information. Moreover, displaying your data in a table makes it much more accessible to your audience.  Say you are presenting key financial information about your business to a group of investors. You have done your research and have all the necessary data which clearly indicates that your cookie shop is a thriving business. You can communicate this fact by putting all the numerical data in a table format thus displaying your information to its best advantage.
If you already have all your data in an Excel spreadsheet, you can simply copy the table and paste it on to a PowerPoint slide. Then you can format the table and make it look pretty.
Or, you can simply open your PowerPoint and then from the Ribbon click on the Insert