The Umbrellas

The Umbrellas (about 1881-1886), the artist of the painting is Pierre-Auguste Renoir, a French Impressionist painter. According to Renoir, he began the painting in 1881, painting the figures on the right, but then put it aside and finished it about five years later. During those years, Renoir rethought his whole approach to painting and rejected Impressionism.

Fun Fact: The painting looks like the work of two different artists, because the figures on the right are painted in a loose, Impressionist style with feathery brushwork, blurred contours and intense blues while the rest of the picture is more linear and more sombre in coloring. Read More…

Other Library Resources to learn about art & artists:

Hot Topics Arts – Visual Arts

Biography in Context

May: Healthy Vision Month

Health program ideas – brought to you by The Pulse, part of the Gale Health and Wellness Resource Center

May is Healthy Vision Month. According for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vision disability is among the top ten disabilities affecting those 18 and older and the single most common disability among children. Furthermore, close to three and a half million people over age 40 are severely visually impaired, including those who are blind, and one in twelve people with diabetes over age 40 has diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to blindness.

Many debilitating visual health problems are preventable, however, and, fortunately, promoting Healthy Vision Month will be easy with these free resources:

Quick and Easy

Printable Coloring Pages, Puzzles, Activity Booklets, Bookmarks, and Educational Materials for Children and Adults:

From the National Institute of Health’s National Eye Institute:

From “Eye Didn’t Know That,” a public health campaign from Transitions Optical, Inc.

More Quick and Easy Printables:

Featured Resources

Books, Links to Free Information, and Organizations to Contact:

Books for All Ages

Free Information Promoting Healthy Vision

Is the book checked out? Check these out instead.

  • Brochures and Fact Sheets from the National Institute of Health’s National Eye Institute – available as downloads or to order.
  • Vision Aware: The Self-Help Resource Center For Vision Loss

Organizations to Contact

Free information and resources:

Book Club

Observe Healthy Vision Month this May by choosing one of these vision related books or movies for your children’s, teen, or adult discussion group:

Tie Ins

May celebrates Mother’s Day! You can bring together Healthy Vision Awareness and Mother’s Day with these crafty gifts:

Community Resources

Find a professional to speak at your library or find help for your library customers.

Publicity Resources

Use this free material alongside your library’s May programming information – newsletter, blog, posters, or flyers – to promote both your library’s programs and healthy vision month.

Fun Stuff

Goof off at the reference desk and amaze your friends on Twitter . . . OR add some fun to a library program, your library website, Facebook page, or Twitter feed:

Brain Teaser – France

Need help? Use Credo Reference Online
France is said to be the most visited country in the world. How much do you know about France and the French? Test your knowledge with this brainteaser.

1. Paris, the capital of France, is situated on which river?

2. Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” is in which Paris museum?

3. In 1965, a road tunnel was opened from Chamonix in France to Courmayeur in Italy – under which mountain (the highest mountain in the Alps)?

4. What are the three colours on the French flag?

5. In which region of France does true champagne come from: the northwest, the northeast, or the southeast?

6. Which famous French singer was born Edith Giovanna Gassion and adopted a name which meant a “little sparrow”?

7. Which large island in the Mediterranean is an offshore province of France?

8. Which 1980 musical was based on an 1862 novel by Victor Hugo?

9. In 1998, France became world champions by beating which country’s team in the soccer World Cup at the Stade de France?

10. In 1898, which French novelist aroused interest in the Dreyfus Case by writing a letter beginning “J’accuse”?

How did you do?

0 – 1 Mmmm, not exactly brilliant.
2 – 5 A reasonable stab.
6 – 8 A good showing. But there’s still room for improvement!
9 – 10 You really know your stuff. Well done!

Questions set by Tony Augarde (

May: American Stroke Month / National High Blood Pressure Education Month

May health programing ideas – brought to you by The Pulse, part of the Gale Health and Wellness Resource Center.

Stroke is the third leading cause of death and the leading cause of serious long-term disability in the United States. In fact, every 40 seconds someone has a stroke in the United States. Community awareness is especially vital in the case of stroke because recognizing the signs of stroke and getting help immediately can drastically minimize the effects of a stroke. Too often symptoms are ignored. Lifestyle changes can decrease the risk of having a stroke in the first place.

By promoting American Stroke Month / National High Blood Pressure Month this May, you  can make a difference. Promoting it will be easy with these free resources and with information from Gale Health and Wellness Resource Center.:

  • Quick and Easy: printable coloring pages and other activities for children and teens.
  • Featured Resources: books for children and their caregivers and links to reliable online information
  • Book Club: adult book club ideas
  • Tie In:  ideas for library programs
  • Community Resources: local agencies to contact
  • Publicity Resources: free resources to help you publicize American Stroke Month / National High Blood Pressure Month at your library through social networking sites or traditional printed materials
  • Fun Stuff: links to interactive websites and apps

Quick and Easy

Coloring Pages:

Activity Pages:

Printables for Adults

Featured Resources

Books for Adults

Reliable Online Information for Adults:

Reliable Online Information for Children and Teens:

Book Club

Book ConnectionTM – Book Clubs to Help Stroke Victims

Book Clubs are being used as a therapeutic tool for stroke victims with aphasia: the loss of abilities like reading, writing, speaking, and comprehending. In 1999 the California Center for Aphasia started  Book ConnectionTM, a book club program for stroke victims with aphasia. More information as well as a facilitator’s manual and tools to facilitate Book Connection programs are available at the Book ConnectionTM website.

Memoir Book Club for Adults: Shadows Bright as Glass by Amy Ellis Nutt (Simon & Schuster, 2011)

This memoir is the story of Jon Sarkin, a Chiropractor who suffers a stroke.

From the Publisher: “When he awoke, he was a different man. Before the stroke, he was a calm, disciplined chiropractor, a happily married husband and father of a newborn son. Now he was transformed into a volatile and wildly exuberant obsessive, seized by a manic desire to create art, devoting virtually all his waking hours to furiously drawing, painting, and writing poems and letters to himself . . . . In a beautifully crafted narrative, award-winning journalist and Pulitzer Prize finalist Amy Ellis Nutt interweaves Sarkin’s remarkable story with a fascinating tour of the history of and latest findings in neuroscience . . . .  Nutt brings vividly to life pivotal moments of discovery in neuroscience, from the shocking “rebirth” of a young girl hanged in 1650 to the first autopsy of an autistic savant’s brain, and the extraordinary true stories of people whose personalities and cognitive abilities were dramatically altered by brain trauma, often in shocking ways.”

Tie Ins

“Stroke Ain’t No Joke”: Stroke Prevention Hip Hop for Kids

More Stroke Related Programming Ideas for Children and Teens

Community Resources

Find a local agency to partner with, a speaker, or other local resources here:

Publicity Resources

Use these free publicity resources alongside your library’s May programming information – newsletter, blog, posters, or fliers – to promote American Stroke Month / National High Blood Pressure Month at your library.

Fun Stuff

Add these interesting and helpful interactive links to your library’s website, Facebook page, or Twitter feed:

For Children

For Adults

Brain Teaser – Cons

Here are clues to ten words which all start with con-. For instance, “The director of an orchestra, choir, opera or ballet” could lead to “conductor”. Can you identify all ten words?
Need help? Use Credo Reference Online.

1. A performance given by one or more singers or instrumentalists or both.

2. The interchange through speech of information, ideas, etc.; spoken communication.

3. Somebody who is kept in prison as a punishment for a crime.

4. To express pleasure to someone at their success, good fortune, happiness, etc.

5. To give one’s permission for something; to agree to something.

6. Hollowed or rounded inwards like the inside of a bowl.

7. An entertainer who is able to twist their body into spectacularly unnatural positions.

8. A large destructive fire.

9. An index of words used in a single book or all the works of an author.

10. The state of being related by blood or descended from a common ancestor.

How did you do?

0 – 1 Mmmm, not exactly brilliant.
2 – 5 A reasonable stab.
6 – 8 A good showing. But there’s still room for improvement!
9 – 10 You really know your stuff. Well done!

Questions set by Tony Augarde (