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Science in Context
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Science & Technology

The Library offers many tools for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) literacy for all ages. Portland Public Library strives to engage the community with a fascination for science, the wonders of the natural world, and the possibilities of technology. Through explorations of all kinds – information services, hands-on learning, digital experiences, and public programming – the Science & Technology team aims to stimulate understanding, exploration, and creativity with the sciences and present the fun, the useful, and the very interesting.

For more information on our Science & Technology resources and events, please read below.

Sustainability (from sustain and ability) is the endurance of systems and processes through time. The Portland Sustainability Series will present a diversity of speakers to share different aspects of the work moving Maine to greater endurance and sustainability. Please join the Portland Public Library and the Southern Maine Conservation Collaborative as we engage in these important issues and conversations.

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Read on to find out about the current varieties of seeds available to borrowers, and some growing tips. Check out is at the Main Library Reference desk.

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Greet the summer with an eye for exploring the world– check out one of the five Family Science Backpacks. Available to borrow for one week, see the staff at the Children’s Desk in the main library for more information!

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Seeds are a plentiful resource in the world, but learning how to grow and cultivate plants takes a little practice and skill. That is why we are starting a seed lending program. The basic idea is that you plant seeds that you “borrow” from the library, let some of the plants go to seed, then return some of these next generation seeds for others to borrow.

You’ll never have a fine for not returning seeds, and returning seeds is not a requirement. In fact, we won’t be accepting seeds in return until the Spring of 2017 when Phase II gets underway. Read more about how the program will work.

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Resources, events, and local organizations for Maine makers! Check here for new ways to inspire creativity, creation, and collaboration in our community.

maker culture, and bring together the talents and creativity in the community to share ideas and projects with others – See more at:
maker culture, and bring together the talents and creativity in the community to share ideas and projects with others – See more at:
maker culture, and bring together the talents and creativity in the community to share ideas and projects with others – See more at:
maker culture, and bring together the talents and creativity in the community to share ideas and projects with others – See more at:
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The Technology Center has added a Maker Bot Replicator to our services. Currently, this exciting new technology is available by appointment on Wednesdays from 10am to 4pm, or via email. Please read the guidelines to make your appointment, or to learn how to submit your file via email for printing. No experience with 3D printing is required, you can select a test print or have a staff member help you select a design from one of the many free libraries of 3D designs on the web.

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The Portland Public Library offers classes and tutoring for all levels of computer users.  Advance registration is required for most sessions – please call 871-1700 x 708 or stop by the public computing desk at the main library to sign up.

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Doing science can be fun! You may think of research as teams of professional scientists at work but with the aid of the Internet, non-specialists can contribute, too.  As “Citizen Scientists” we can share in scientific data collection and providing access to scientific information within our communities.  PPL promotes citizen science through events, educational programs, and volunteer opportunities for you to explore science or technology on your own, increase personal understanding and appreciation, and contribute to the research underway.

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Explore how-to instructions and videos in our online reference resources and learn how to fix it yourself!

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Climate Change

Our lives are integrally connected to the climate.  Learn more at the library about how human societies have adapted to the relatively stable climate we have experienced since the last ice age and the changes, anticipated or unanticipated, that a warming climate will bring.  How we react, how we adapt, how we protect our environment, our health, and our safety, depends on understanding and a will to action.

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Up Next at the Library:
Legos @ PPL Riverton10:00am - 11:30am
Riverton Branch
Legos @ PPL Riverton10:00am - 11:30am
Riverton Branch
Legos @ PPL Riverton10:00am - 11:30am
Riverton Branch
From the PPL blog:
Circulating Wifi Hotspots!
With your Library card - you can now take the internet with your wherever you go!   More »
Energy Model at our Peaks Branch
An update on the energy model developed with PEAT as part of the Peaks renovation project.   More »
Portland vs Portland: a tale of two cities
Portland Maine and Portland Oregon have libraries that get confused!   More »
Contact the team leader
Meg Gray   Email »
Science and Technology Librarian
207-871-1700 x284
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