As a part of its new series of PSA’s in Assembly, last Monday the Patrick Wilson Library offered a message to the MBA student body about the importance of embracing the comfort and simplicity of physical books. After hearing about Lane Smith’s new childrens book It’s A Book and seeing the book trailer online (available on the book’s Amazon page here), we thought it would be fun to read the entire book to the students during assembly as a fun but simple way to explain that, while an electronic device might have its own user-friendly appeal, books are the oldest and most valuable resources that we have. Now, hopefully, everybody on campus will be saying what Lane Smith makes famous: “It’s a Book!”.
All the books about the Bell Witch were set out on display. The giant purple spider that sounds like a vacuum cleaner made its annual appearance. Ms. Tilley’s famous meatballs were here one second and gone the next. And strange “faculty and staff” who usually stay holed up in their classrooms walked down the front library steps in awe of the eerie decorations in the New Reading Room. What was the occasion? None other than the Annual MBA Library Halloween Party. While we hoped to see more young faculty family trick-or-treaters, the Friday morning before Halloween weekend was a great celebration. The on-campus hit of the morning was library assistant and head tennis coach Tom Boysen who, along with Ms. Tilley’s Little Red Riding Hood and Mr. Quinn’s Grandmother, was dressed up as a tall Big Bad Wolf and scaring students all over campus.
Thanks to all who came out for our party. To see a picture of the food table and the librarians in costume, go to the Library Welcome Webpage at https://www.montgomerybell.edu/podium/default.aspx?t=126778 and look for a clickable picture on the top right.
Dr. Tim Boyd, a new History Teacher who earned his Ph.D. in American History at Vanderbilt, has electrified the school with his quick wit and dedicated appreciation of Southern History. He has also been a great colleague for the Patrick Wilson Library, recommending a great series of books by C.J. Sansom called the Matthew Shardlake Mysteries. Historical detective novels set during the reign of Henry VIII, these books have been praised by celebrated mystery novelist P.D. James as some of her favorite mysteries. We’re lucky to have Dr. Boyd and this great series!
Daniel Maynard is being moved by the Patrick Wilson Library’s official hat as he models it.
Here’s our monthly list of web tools and interesting articles for faculty and members of the MBA community to use. We hear of new websites and Web 2.0 resources every day, but these are the ones that jumped out at us.
1. For the Foreign Language Faculty: LiveMocha (www.livemocha.com). LiveMocha is a social networking site for language education, a forum where people can sign on and practice speaking numerous languages with people from around the world who are also learning.
2. For the English Faculty, for a great alternative to online dictionaries with too many advertisements, try using and promoting Wordnik (www.wordnik.com), a very user-friendly dictionary and thesaurus. Also, the Library is looking into purchasing a few Gleeditions (www.gleeditions.com) of required novels and plays for students to use as interactive reading texts for class. Two titles that are currently available in these amazing formats are Macbeth and Huckleberry Finn, both of which play a major role in English classes here at MBA.
3. Infotopia (www.infotopia.info) is a very comprehensive list of web reference resources for all subjects and issues (with a great directory of images as well).
4. For Cultural Geography and History teachers, try the World Digital Library (www.wdl.org), a large collection of digitized primary materials from countries and cultures around the world.
That’s all for now, folks, but keep checking back for more great user-friendly, often-free resources!
Khet is a strategy board game that has taken off in the library. Students (and Mr. Quinn, if he feels brave enough) can be seen playing it and calculating the optical rebound of the laser off of different pieces throughout the day. The object of the game is to bounce your laser off of any of the pieces off of the board to hit your opponent’s pharaoh.
Coming soon: the Khet Expansion Pack (did someone say 3D!) and the Beamsplitter for new Khet challenges.
MBA has partnered with The Hermitage to encourage history students to write and narrate podcasts about the historical significance of our school’s namesake and original benefactor. The letter, written by General Jackson in 1820, concerns the possibility of Colonel Montgomery Bell fulfilling a contract to supply arms to the government. It’s great to see our archival objects get attention, especially to be used by our students to promote MBA and Nashville History.