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Guess the New Tool Coming to PPL!

posted: , by Samantha Duckworth
tags: About the Library | Library Collections | Programs & Events | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors | Science & Technology

In anticipation of the Library’s maker fair happening later this month, our staff have been hard at work getting together an arsenal of tools to unveil. While a few of them will stay complete surprises, we can’t contain our excitement over our newest tool. It is currently living in the IT department, getting polished and prepped so it can be wheeled out into the community on April 25th.

Here are a few clues about this new piece of our technology collection. Read the clues below to try and figure out what we’ll be introducing,

  • The ink for this machine is known as filament
  • The creation of a raft is a necessary step before your project really begins with this tool
  • The first commercially available model of this tool was called Cupcake
  • File format .STL is the most compatible format with this tool
  • Different tools vary slightly on the process for utilization, PPL’s new tool uses fused deposition modeling

If you think you correctly guessed the new tool using these facts, email: soucy@portlandpubliclibrary.org to verify, and then come to the maker fair on 4/25 to claim your prize!


Choose Civility Honors MLK Jr Day

posted: , by Kim Simmons
tags: Programs & Events | Adults | Teens | Seniors | Government | Portland History

Martin Luther King Jr day inspires curiosity in myriad directions.  Dr. King was a prolific writer and thinker and leader, offering many pathways to follow.  In recent years, MLK Jr day has been claimed as a “Day of Service,” inviting us to give our attention to our communities in whatever ways we can.  King’s work for social justice was premised on the ideals of nonviolence, inclusion, and freedom. At times, these values can jostle with each other, can need our attention in different ways as we seek to create and sustain communities which embody the full vision of King and others who led the Civil Rights Movement.

The Choose Civility initiative invites you to consider your most sacred values, your deepest wishes for your community, and your commitment to enact social justice when and where you can.   On Saturday January 24th, we will host our 3rd and final (for this season) “Portland Public Conversation” on the topic Picturing Portland.

We hope that you will make time to join us in this “design-thinking” inspired session which will help us consider how we take our best ideas and bring them to fruition. This will be a highly interactive session!

Although registration is not required, we would love a sense of #s for planning our lunch menu, so please do RSVP if possible, just by sending a quick email to simmons@portlib.org or “join” via facebook.
Here’s a sense of how our time will be spent:
10:00 am Library opens, we will have coffee, treats, and books to peruse
10:30 am Welcome, ice breaker, a bit of information about what we’ve learned from our Choose Civility programs thus far
11:00am The “Head-Heart-Hustle,” facilitated by special guest Sara Shifrin from Gould Academy’s IDEAS center, is designed to help us understand our own commitments, passions and capacity to contribute and to find themes among us that help us consider where we might best “Choose Civility” in 2015
12:00 pm Final thoughts & an invitation to continue participating in Action Groups supported by Lift360
12:30 pm Closing … Lunch will be offered after the formal closing of the program and will allow for more conversation and forming of action groups
We also invite you to browse the Choose Civility collection as well as the wonderful books and films that honor Dr. King’s life, that explore the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s & 60s or that engage us in questions about the status of Civil Rights today.

 

 


Reflections on Civility

posted: , by Kim Simmons
tags: Programs & Events | Recommended Reads | Adults | Teens | Seniors | Government

 

Over the last 18 months, the Choose Civility Initiative, in concert with many community partners (see partial list below) has explored a central query — what does civility mean when the goal is to increase civic engagement and participation among all members of a community?

Lift360
Maine Humanities Council
League of Women Voters
Elders for Future Generations
West End Neighborhood Association
USM Economics Department
Coalition on the Commemoration of the 1964 Civil Rights Act
ACLU of Maine

Respect

Collective definitions of civility have almost always begun with the concept of “respect” — respect for differing points of view, differing identities, differing ways of being in the world.  This conversation often begs for deeper listening – our individual experiences of  “respect” can differ and a central tenant of diversity and social justice education is the recognition that intention and impact can differ.

Sarah Lawrence Lightfoot’s seminal work on interrogating the lived experience of respect is a wonderful opening for deeper thinking about the ideal.

 

Peeling back “respect” often opens us to the value of curiosity.  The practice of civility and civic engagement depend on some element of shared learning among members of a community.  The Choose Civility Initiative quickly found that participants have a deep and abiding interest in sustained conversation – that the opportunity to learn from “experts” and from each other are equally important.  Curiousity leads to increased empathy and the strengthening  of the skill of “listening for understanding.”   Our Choose Civility collection of 125 titles explores many topics and and our programming emphasizes opportunities for conversation among attendees.

CCgroundrules

Photo Credit : Sarah Davis Ground Rules Generated “Creating Communities We Wish To Live In” December 2014

In some times and places, a call for “civility” can be understood as code for a call to “quiet down,”  to suppress controversial ideas or dissent.   Portland Public Library embraces a much more rich and inclusive meaning of civility – civility is the value that allows full exploration of ideas, popular and unpopular; civility creates a climate where dissent can be expressed without fear of retaliation or violence; civility allows opportunities for clear and fair access to information that shapes the policy decisions that effect us all.   As our larger community engages in debate and discussion about our values, we are Choosing Civility. As we share our own understanding of the word and listen hard to the stories of others, we are Choosing Civility.   As we give of ourselves, as we advocate, as we serve, as we learn, as we appreciate our community, we Choose Civility.

We are grateful to the hundreds of individuals who participated in Choose Civility programming over the last 18 months and we look forward to continuing these conversations in 2015!

 

 

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