Researching genealogy can be daunting enough, but throwing the new DNA technology into things can really make it complicated.
Before wading into the genetic testing waters, come out to DNA and Genealogy at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26. The event will take place at the library’s downtown location.
Charise Markin, an experienced amateur genealogy researcher, will present the program. She says her hope is to help people considering genealogical DNA testing find the service that best fits their needs.
“I’ll go over what DNA can do and cannot do for you,” she said. “I’ll give some examples from when I did my own DNA test.”
Markin said she has been interested in her own genealogy since she was a child, listening to stories of her family from her grandfather. She has been doing her own research for about 25 years.
She said that different tests are better for certain results.
“DNA is fascinating to me,” she said. ”Depending on what you’re looking for, different tests are better for certain things.”
Markin has been able to trace her family back, in some cases, back to Europe or the Revolutionary War, she said.
“I enjoy history. For me, it’s a dive into … getting to know that person. I want to know the people that the bloodline is comprised of,” she said.
And with DNA testing, she can find the makeup of the bloodline, as well.
Beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 13 and continuing every Thursday until Oct. 18, Super Readers Book Club will combine fun activities and a participant picked book to help improve the literacy skills of first to third graders.
Each session the children will take turns reading from a book, picked by the group, aloud, if they’re comfortable with that, and do an activity.
“The goal of the book club is for young readers to discover great books to read and have fun with books as they are developing their reading skills,” said Allison McLean, children’s librarian.
Half the time will be spent reading from the book and the other half on activities related to the book, according to McLean. The group will choose from four different books at the first meeting.
“Kids will want to participate because they will enjoy talking about books with other kids their age,” McLean said. “And going beyond the pages of the book to bring the book to life with activities about the book.”
This is a great alternative to other after school reading programs and will fulfill students’ at home reading requirements.
No registration is required to participate.
Meet Benny. The black Labrador retriever is Elkhart Public Library’s new guest star for Paws to Read.
The popular Saturday morning program pairs young readers with a therapy dog to help kids gain confidence in reading aloud. This school year, the program will take place downtown library every fourth Saturday of the month, 10 a.m. to noon.
Jeannine Seggerman and Benny have been together for several years, continuing to train together to help and serve others.
“He has trained in many areas to be certified a therapy dog,” Seggerman says.
Seggerman, a retired first grade teacher from the Edwardsburg school system, says reading comprehension is a cause very dear to her.
< < Sign up for a 15-minute reading session by calling 574-522-2223 > >
”Reading is something that is the most important aspect of their life, so some of this is about enticing children that maybe haven’t been to the library to come out to the library,” she said.
Benny takes over for Barney, a St. Bernard who retired from Paws to Read in the spring due to his advanced age. Though a different breed and with a different owner, Benny has many of the same kind and thoughtful characteristics as Barney.
“They enjoy reading to Benny,” Seggerman says. “He’s a very calm and loveable dog. Children just feel comfort in reading to a dog it gives them a calm and allows them to be more confident in themselves.”
Seggerman says she is excited to work with children again, as typically the pair work with the elderly. Overall, she just wants to help children learn to read and encourage people to get involved with their library.
A 15-minute reading session can be reserved by calling 574-522-2223. Paws to Read dates for the fall are Sept. 22, Oct. 20 and Nov. 17.
What’s the best book you’ve ever read? PBS’s eight part series The Great American Read will attempt to answer that question. And you have a say! They have put together a list of 100 of America’s best loved novels that span the depth and breadth the human experience and you can vote for your favorite. I have two favorites on the list and interestingly enough they both are about the end of the world. Whether you love romance or science fiction, fantasy or horror everyone will have a favorite on the list.
I love these types of list because I can use this list to read something completely different than my usual genre. Did I say read? I meant listen. I consistently read (mostly ebooks) in my favorite genre (romance) but listen to a variety of genres and books. It’s an easy way for me to try new things and I know, if I switch back to the radio in the middle of the book, the book isn’t for me. EPL has a list of the many ways you can read and listen to the novels on the list.
And tell us who you voted for in the comments or suggest a book that you think should have made the list. I voted for “The Stand” by Stephen King and “Swan Song” by Robert McCammon. I read over 250 books per year and I can still remember the visceral reaction I had to both books. I was very surprised to see “Swan Song” on the list because few horror writers besides King and Koontz are as well known. The Lord of the Rings gets an honorable mention or bronze medal from me. All totaled I have read 25 books on the list, not bad but a little weak for a librarian. I’ll have to work on that this fall, how about you?
Our weekly display will feature the five themes outlined by PBS:
“Who Am I?”
“Villains and Monsters”
“What We Do For Love”
You can find all of these titles at Elkhart Public Library. Many are available in various formats; print, audio, ebook, and eaudio. To find a complete listing of titles and formats available at EPL, please visit our online catalog by clicking here.
Maddie Dougherty will really see how much reading rocks when she’s in Indianapolis next weekend watching Taylor Swift perform live.
Maddie was one of the winners of EPL’s Reading Rocks grand prize; a pair of tickets and accommodations to see Swift on her Reputation tour.
According to her mother, Elizabeth, Maddie has enjoyed participating in summer reading but this year it was taken to a new level.
“Maddie loves to read, excessively almost,” Elizabeth said. “She likes the summer reading program because she gets rewarded for that, whether it is the beads and the bead chain or the grand prize.”
According to Elizabeth, her daughter enjoyed the new component this year of writing a short report about the book.
“Telling other people about the books through the reviews, was really exciting for her,” she said. “She discovered a new author this summer so she was really excited to tell other people about that author and one of those reviews is actually the one that she won with.”
Elizabeth said that during the summer is when she brings both Maddie and Henry, her other child, to the library to check out books most often and summer reading encourages them to check out new and different titles than what they get at their school libraries.
For Maddie, it gives her a chance to read new genres, Elizabeth said.
“They get to check out new books that maybe the school doesn’t have,” she said. “It gives her some opportunities to branch out, it brings her things that maybe she wasn’t familiar with. I’m never worried about her falling off with reading during the summer but I feel like it diversifies her a bit.”
Now though with school back in session, Maddie is looking forward to attending the concert with her dad, Michael, who is also getting ready to rock, according to Elizabeth.
“She is looking forward to it,” Elizabeth said. “And my husband has been listening to Swift’s new album to brush up so he knows what to expect.”