Friday, May 30, 2008

So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen

Our students are packing up their belongings and emptying their dorm rooms as they transition into summer mode. We are transitioning here at the library as well, taking down our displays, shelving the books, (although some are staying out at the circ desk to entice those summer readers!), and cleaning up the building. As our students move on, so do some of us here at the library. As noted in an earlier blog post, I will be moving on to the Newbury Town Library this summer. It seems fitting that I offer our summer farewells and bid my own farewell in our last blog post of this academic year.

It has been a great pleasure and honor to work with the extraordinary students, faculty, and staff here at the Academy. Our learning never ends at the library as we continue to stretch ourselves, dive into new things, and work to make connections with our students. I never thought I would be a blogging, Flickring, Library Thing, moodling, code dabbling librarian. The Pesky library is doing all of this and much more. I will carry the lessons I have learned with me as I set off for new adventures, just as the students do when they graduate and move on.
Thank you for tuning into the Pesky Blog and look for more postings as we begin the 2008-2009 academic year. Happy Summer and Happy Reading!
(Our spiral staircase is one of my favorite photos!)
~ Jen

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Exam Week

Exam Week
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
We have arrived at the last week of the school year and Pesky Library , usually such a lively place, is besieged by clever signs announcing that we are now a place of "Silent Study". Students are taking their final exams and we are trying to provide an environment that is conducive to studying. Everyone, including the librarians, will be happy when this stress-filled week is over and summer vacation is finally here.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

ESL Outing to Haley's

ESL Outing to Haley's
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
As ESL meets in the library for class, the librarians are fortunate to get close to our international students. At the end of the year outing, we help Mrs. Gold transport the students to Haley's in Newburyport for ice-cream. So many decisions to make among flavors, toppings, cone versus dish! The most important lesson learned this year was that a medium really means the amount of ice-cream on a cone, not the actual size of the cone itself (maybe the most relevant lesson of the year!) We all enjoyed this last outing together and we wish them safe journeys home and a restful summer.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Pesky Top Ten

As we shelve the final returns this week and prepare for the summer months we were curious to know which titles circulated the most this year. The final tallies and the Top Ten circulations for Fiction are:
Denial by Ablow
The Other Boleyn Girl by Gregory
Water for Elephants by Gruen
A Thousand Splendid Suns and The Kite Runner both by Hosseini
Run by Patchett
Crossing to Safety by Stegner
The River King by Hoffman
Those Who Save Us by Blum
and Bridge of Sighs by Russo

Our Top Ten DVD circulations include:
Akeelah and the bee
The Devil Wears Prada
A Doll’s House
Miss Potter
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle
Night at the Museum
Sharpe’s Challenge
and Stuart Little

For summer reading ideas check out the books on our top ten list or stop by the library and we will be happy to make some suggestions! Happy Reading!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Shelving the Pesky Girls

A Job Well Done
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
Nostalgia rules at year's end as we recall the timid freshmen whom we are now bidding farewell as seniors. Here in the library, we are also reminiscing, saying good-bye and sending two of our own into new ventures. Kate Pinkham who mangages our Archives and is our technical services assistant is heading back to school. Our Library Information Specialist Jennifer Brown is becoming the Director of the Newbury Public Library in July. We shall miss them (especially their skills with hand tools!) and wish them success and happiness as they go forth.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Milestone at 300!

Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
The Milestone on campus was erected in 1708 by John Dummer who was marking an event important to him, the establishment of the Byfield Parish Church. Although the meeting house was built in 1702 and the Reverend Moses Hale was chosen as the first minister, the church was on land that had no public roads leading to it. In 1708 the parish determined that every member should grant access for others to reach the church. These pathways were incorporated into the Bay Road which had been established in the 1660’s, cutting through the Dummer farm and on through the marshes to Thurlow’s Bridge.

Two milestones were already in existence in Boston. They had been erected in Boston the previous year by Judge Samuel Sewall, a relative of the Dummers. Sewall was the first to mark distances this way in New England. John Dummer hired John Hartshorn to carve a milestone on his property. Hartshorn had left Haverhill after his family had been killed in an Indian raid. He settled in Byfield where he carved the first gravestones for Byfield Parish. You can read more about the Dummers and the carvers in Stories Carved in Stone: the story of the Dummer family, the Merrimac Valley Gravestone Carvers, and the Newbury Carved Stones, 1636 – 1735 (LH 974.4511 GAG.)

Our Milestone is a major part of our Commencement ceremonies. Following the ceremony on the front lawn of the Mansion House, faculty process to the Little Red Schoolhouse where they are joined by the senior class for the last time. As the schoolhouse’s bell is rung, faculty march around the Milestone and form a line to the wall. Seniors follow, walking around the Milestone and then thundering past their teachers to leap over the wall and into the future.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


The Wall
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
One of the traditions for the Seniors at the Governor's Academy is to leap over the pictured wall after Commencement. This jump is symbollic of the end of their high school careers, and the beginning of the rest of their lives. This Sunday, proud family members will watch the new graduates as they joyfully hurdle themselves over this last obstacle before summer vacation begins. We wish all the Seniors the very best!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Don't Panic!

Towel Day Display
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
On May 25th, grab a towel and pay tribute to the memory of Douglas Adams (1952 - 2001.) Why a towel? Well, as Adams explains in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a towel has practical and psychological value. Of course here at the academy, Towel Day is also Commencement. Caps and gowns don't necessarily accessorize well so choose your towel carefully. Be grateful for the opportunity to celebrate the literary world created by Adams.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Sharing headphones.....
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
Often students need to share something they are experiencing whether it be music or video. Then we see them sharing headphones.....creative library behavior.......!

Monday, May 19, 2008

10,000 and Counting

We have just achieved a milestone and, serendipitously, I snagged it! Our photostream on Flickr has been viewed 10,000 times. Flickr allows us to create a history of our library in snapshots and share it with the world. We hear from other librarians for whom our pictures have sparked ideas as their pictures have inspired us. Our international students have posted their impressions of the academy to share and we've taught them about Creative Commons liscensing. We look forward to taking the pictures which will bring our next 10,000 views.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Books on the Environment

May Environmental Books
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
Along one of our borders is the Parker River whose estuary is part of The Great Marsh. The largest salt marsh in New England covers 20,000 acres from Gloucester to Salisbury. Our history is tied to our location. The first Dummer arrived from England with cattle and settled here as the Parker and Mill Rivers made natural fences for his animals. Our science students research in the marsh and along the river. Students fish from Thurlow's Bridge which from 1654 to 1758 was the only bridge along the Bay Road from Boston north. And on my ways to and from home, I drive through the marsh and over the bridge. Each season has its own beauty although now is my favorite with the abundance of red-winged blackbirds.
Our interaction with the marsh is to become an even greater part of our curriculum. And to that end, we have started to enlarge our books on environmental writings and issues. One series is on Invasive Species by Suellen May. Of special interest to us is the section on purple loosestrife, a beautiful plant introduced for its purple flowers but of great threat to our wetlands. Another book to dip within is American Earth: Environmental Writing since Thoreau edited by Bill McKibben. Essays and short pieces are joined by artowork, maps, and historical photographs. Come by the library and look through the new books.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Wonderful displays

Ever wonder who does the displays for Pesky Library? The lady's name is Louise Healey and she has been doing our wonderful displays for the past 10 years. Her creativity has gotten our library recognition from other libraries and librarians as we have posted the diplays on Flickr and shared her ideas with the entire library community. Her intended audience, our students, have picked up books they would not otherwise have tried, thanks to her clever displays. Well done, Mrs. Healey!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Senior Prank

Senior Prank
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
'Tis that time of the year when giddiness goes hand-in-hand with the last minute rush to complete papers, AP exams, and finals.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Fishing on You Tube

Fishing inspiration can be found everywhere, even on You Tube. After you have taken a look at our fishing displays, check out the many instructional and entertaining videos you can find on the web, including the one we have posted today.

Monday, May 12, 2008

New Nonfiction

For the nonfiction lovers we have one last collection of new books before the end of the year. For a complete listing of the books pictured visit our new acquisitions page on Flickr.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Caption Update

There have been some very creative captions added to our Humor Me display. For the dog and kitty poster some of our captions include, "Cute", Ah-dorable", "The cat is eating the dog", "Aww Frenemies", and "Every Dog Has it's Day". We have also now found captions on other displays and posters around the library, so the comment idea is catching on.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Goodbye Seniors

Another Satisfied Customer
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
It is the time of year to say good-bye to our Seniors. The remaining weeks of this school year are filled with the Prom, with exams, with yearbook pages to write and photos of the past 4 years to enjoy. There is laughter and there are tears as the realization sets in that their time together is fleeting. The students who come to the library every evening, our "regulars", will be missed by the staff who have gotten to know them well these past 3 years. We wish them the very best!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Fish will be biting

Fishing Display
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
Fishing season has officially begun as the first striper was caught off Plum Island yesterday and was reported in The Daily News. This is exciting news for many here at The Governor's Academy. The number of students, staff, and faculty who love of the sport of fishing seems to be growing and as the weather continues to warm up, we are certain to hear more about the catches people are making. Pulled from the second floor stacks are dozens for fishing books which are making up one of our display cases. From fishing techniques to fish guides, there is a book suited for every fisherman.
Check it out!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

New Fiction

New Fiction - May 2008
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
May brings along the end of our book purchasing for a bit, so we were happy to see one last box waiting for us. There are many new and intriguing fiction titles and you can find them listed on our Flickr page. Happy Reading!

White Board Doodling

We recently added white boards to the library floor in anticipation of group work for finals. One of our students has started an interactive board asking for people to draw their favorite things or people. Already the board is filling up and while it may not be information for finals (yet), the students are using them in interesting and entertaining ways!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Grandparents Day

Grandparents Day
Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
It is Grandparents Day and students are showing their grandparents what their days are like here at the Academy. Grandparents attend classes and other activities throughout the day. The library always becomes a destination spot, a quiet place to rest, read the paper, and enjoy time with their grandchildren.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Clean books are happy books

Originally uploaded by Pesky Library
At least twice a year each book in our collection is thoroughly cleaned and checked for loose pages or ripped covers. We want to make sure the books are in good shape and are where they should be on the shelves. This particular cleaning occurred while "shifting" was also taking place. The entire non-fiction collection has been weeded and moved this year. The library staff, although not thrilled with these tasks, realize the importance of this work.