Jen Kolan

Finals Week in the Library

Student asking librarian for help

With finals starting tomorrow, I wanted to wish you all good luck and remind you that the library is here to help.

Do you need a quiet place to study? The library is the perfect place for that. We have many different spaces to study in including a small silent study area on the first floor of the library (which is pretty quiet to begin with). If you prefer to study with a group, you can book one of our study rooms for up to 4 people. You can also book a virtual study room.

Do you need to review your textbook? We have many of the books used on campus; search the library textbook collection to see if we have what you need. Most check out for 3 hours.

Do you need help researching for your final paper? You can ask for help at the library information desk, or you can call, email, text, or chat with us on the Ask a Librarian page. Do you need help citing sources? The librarians can help you with that too, or you can use our citing sources guide.

Do you need to print a paper? The library has black and white printers (10-15 cents a page) and a color printer (50 cents a page). We also have a scanner if you need it.

Do you need to know when your finals are? You can check the final exam schedule.

When in doubt, Ask a Librarian!

Kid’s Books in the Library

Do you have kids? Are you taking a children’s literature course? Or do you just like reading children’s or young adult books?  In any case, did you know that the library has a children’s book collection?  It is a small, but growing section in the lower level of the library near the men’s bathroom.  The best way to browse titles virtually is to do a search for “juvenile” in the library catalog. Once you get results, use the menu on the left to refine by the location “juvenile”.

Screenshot of menu to refine search

Do you prefer electronic books?  We have access to children’s e-books as well.  The best way to find the children’s e-books is to start at the library catalog. Search for “juvenile”. Once you get results, then use the menu on the left to refine by “juvenile fiction” and/or “juvenile nonfiction” and then under “format” choose “Ebooks” (see screenshot below).

Screenshot of library catalog

Play a Fake News Game

Misinformation and disinformation are readily found in your social media feeds. In this game, you will play the part of a producer of fake news trying to earn badges to become the “Master of Disinformation”. As you learn how to deceive your followers, this game will teach you the techniques used by influencers to deceived and misinform. The goal is to learn to identify these techniques so that in the future, you don’t repost misleading, incomplete, or just plain fake news. The Bad News Game.

Columbus Day or Indigenous Peoples’ Day?

If you have children, chances are they have no school tomorrow (October 11th) due to Columbus Day. If they go to Chicago Public Schools, it’s due to Indigenous Peoples’ Day. (Moraine Valley is NOT closed tomorrow.) So which is it, Columbus Day or Indigenous Peoples’ Day? According to an NBC5 article entitled What to Know about Indigenous Peoples’ Day and Columbus Day in Illinois, in 2017, Illinois designated the last Monday of September as Indigenous Peoples’ Day. However on Friday, President Biden made a proclamation that October 11th will officially be known as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

If you are interested in learning more about Indigenous Peoples’, the Moraine Valley Library has you covered. We have many books and videos about Indigenous Peoples’. We have many databases that might be useful for finding articles or videos about Indigenous Peoples. Here are the search results from our Academic Search Complete database on Indigenous Peoples of the Americas.

When in doubt, the librarians are always happy to help. Just be sure to Ask a Librarian.

Photo credits: “National Indigenous People’s Day Celebration” by danna § curious tangles is licensed with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Wildfires can make their own weather!?!

After I finished my library degree, I had the privilege of living in southern Oregon for three of the most adventurous years of my life. Back then, wildfires were frequent, but they rarely turned into the monsters they can be today. Recently, the largest fire in Oregon, the Bootleg Fire, was said to be creating it’s own weather – it even spawned a firenado! This fascinating article by Wired magazine entitled Oh Good, Now there is an Outbreak of Wildfire Thunderclouds, will explain how they do that and what they mean for climate future. For more resources about wildfires, pyrocumulonimbus clouds, or other environmental research questions, please Ask a Librarian for help.

The Science Behind Why We Wear Masks

Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2

Do you remember at the beginning of the pandemic when many were saying that masks don’t protect against Covid-19? At the time, based on a long standing myth in the physics, it was thought that the virus could not be airborne because the particles were too large to remain aerosol. Last summer, a group of scientists challenged that thought which finally lead the World Health Organization and CDC to acknowledge that SARS-CoV-2 is, in fact, airborne. You can read about the origin of the myth and the research that lead to uncovering it in Wired magazine’s article, The 60-Year-Old Scientific Screwup that Helped Covid Kill. You can also read about it in this British Medical Journal editorial, Covid-19 Has Redefined Airborne Transmission or this government document Dismantling Myths on the Airborne Transmission of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). If you would like to do more research on SARS-CoV-2 or any other scientific topic, you can try one of the Moraine Valley Library’s science databases or our nursing and biological science databases. For help with this or any other research inquiries, the librarians are always happy to help. Just Ask a Librarian.

And the Oscar Goes to…

Last night, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (also known as “The Academy”) gave the award for Best Picture of the Year to the movie Nomadland. We don’t own the movie yet, but the library does have copies of Nomadland, the book both in print and as an e-audio book. The book and movie tell the story of a woman who lives out of her van while traveling around the American west looking for work. A few of the actresses in the movie are actual van-dwelling nomads in real life. Hopefully we will have the movie soon, but in the meantime, you can check out some of the previous Best Picture winners from the library. Click on the image below to get to a list with descriptions and available options (including the books if we own them and they share the same name as the film).

Image of theater seats and stage








1919 author, Eve L. Ewing, on Charter Schools

If you’ve been following our One Book, One College programming this year, you already know Eve L. Ewing, author of 1919 and other books and articles.  A couple of weeks ago, her opinion piece, Can We Stop Fighting about Charter Schools? was published in The New York Times. As a sociologist and educator, she is often asked about her thoughts on the topic. In this piece she argues that, we need “political leaders to abandon some of the principles that have guided education policy in our generation.” She says “we need to replace the fight over charter schools with the assertion that every child deserves a great school,” and to do that, we need to take “seriously the ‘educators don’t get paid enough’ realizations of 2020” and address “the teacher shortage that is going to worsen in the aftermath of the pandemic,” (Ewing, 2021).

If the topic of charter schools interest you, the library can help. You can find books on charter schools in our library catalog.  If you are looking for articles, our education databases are a good place to start. You can also find articles on the topic in our news databases and many of our multiple subject databases. When in doubt, be sure to Ask a Librarian!

Ewing, E. L. (2021, Feb 22). Can we stop fighting about charter schools? New York Times (Online) Retrieved from https://go.openathens.net/redirector/morainevalley.edu?url=https://www.proquest.com/newspapers/can-we-stop-fighting-about-charter-schools/docview/2493195195/se-2?accountid=1977

Relax and Check out our Streaming Video and DVD Collection

Once finals are over, I’m sure you are all looking to do some relaxing. We have all kinds of streaming videos and DVDs in our collection for your enjoyment. Looking to stream one of our feature films? Or would you prefer to check out the feature films in our DVD collection? Do you like documentaries? Here are our streaming documentaries. We have many documentaries in our DVD collection as well. Are you a stand up comedy fan? We’ve got you covered. We have stand up comedy in our streaming collection. Here are our stand up comedy DVDs. We even have streaming audio stand up comedy. If you need help with these, or any of our resources, remember to Ask a Librarian. Here are some of my streaming films:

Some of Jen's Favorite Streaming Films
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