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Director's Update, May 5, 2024


5/3/20243 weeks ago

Hilke Schellman on Artificial Intelligence

Dear Patrons,

On Wednesday, May 8, at 6 p.m., join us for a conversation with Hilke Schellmann about her book, The Algorithm: How AI Decides Who Gets Hired, Monitored, Promoted, and Fired, And Why We Need to Fight Back. This event is hybrid, and registration is required. This lecture is the first in a new series focused on artificial intelligence developed in collaboration with the Library’s Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) initiative and the Communications team. Find more AI-focused events here.

Learn all the steps to create your very own graphic novel with the local artist and author Dean Calusdian at the Creating Comics Workshop at the Main Library on Wednesday, May 8! Participants will learn everything from storytelling to panel design to lettering to publishing and then have a chance to try penciling and inking on their own. For ages 8-12. Space is limited. Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis on May 8.                                                                                                                                           

Are you still looking for that special gift for mom? Come to the Library on Saturday, May 11, and learn beginner-friendly watercolor tips with the artist Nella Mareti. This class is a great way to celebrate Mother's Day with loved ones, and you'll leave with a personalized card. Light nonalcoholic drinks will be provided. Registration is required.

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The Library is pleased to offer the following programs during the week that begins on May 5.

Weekly Activities for Kids     

This week, these programs will be offered at our Boudreau, Central Square, Collins, Main, O’Connell, O’Neill, and Valente locations.   

Book Groups   

Learn more about our Book Groups.  

Baby Lapsit (Main)
Monday, May 6

10-10:20 a.m. Just for you and your baby! Enjoy time with other parents and caregivers to help babies learn, play, and develop language and motor skills. Recommended for 0-12 months. Come prepared to sit on the floor with your baby in your lap. This program can accommodate 15 babies and their caregivers. Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis on the day of the program. The entire party must be present to receive a ticket. This program starts promptly. Unclaimed seats will be offered to someone waiting. We appreciate your patience and understanding. Please call 617-349-4038 for more information. 

Wellness for Seniors: Zumba Gold (Virtual)
Monday, May 6
11-11:45 a.m.

Put on your dancing shoes to improve flexibility and balance, strengthen muscles, and have fun! The Certified Zumba Gold instructor Emily B. will lead you through 45 minutes of low-impact and easy choreography in your own home through Zoom. Join us! Registration for each session is required. This is a virtual event. A Zoom link will be sent to all registered participants 1 hour before the event.

 

ESOL Classes (Central Square) 
Monday, May 6, Tuesday, May 7, and Thursday, May 9
11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 1-2:30 p.m., and 3-4:30 p.m.
Wednesday, May 8, and Friday, May 10
10:30 a.m.-Noon 

English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes occur every weekday. On Monday, Tuesdays and Thursdays, High Beginner ESOL is at 10:30 a.m. Beginner ESOL is on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 1 p.m. Intermediate ESOL is on Tuesday and Thursday at 11 a.m., Advanced ESOL is on Tuesday, and Thursday at 3 p.m.

Equipment and Studio Reservations (Main)
Monday, May 6, 2-4 p.m.
Tuesday, May 7, 3-6 p.m.
Wednesday, May 8, 6-8:30 p.m.
Thursday, May 9, 3-6:30 p.m.

During this period, anyone who has completed The Hive Safety Training and is badged to use equipment or studio(s) can reserve equipment or studio spaces. Staff will assist participants as they are able.

STEAM Academy: iFp Studio (Main)
Monday, May 6
Thursday, May 9
2:30-7 p.m.

Innovators for Purpose (iFp) Studio is a teen-powered design and innovation program where teens channel their energy and creative vision to imagine and build a better world. Blending art, design, science, technology, and storytelling within a social justice framework, teens engage in real-world client-sponsored projects. Teens are invited to learn more and apply on the iFp website: Innovators for Purpose.

LEGO Time (Main)
Monday, May 6
4-4:45 p.m.

It’s a weekly block party! Bring friends to design and build amazing LEGO structures. Let your imagination run wild! The Children's Room has plenty of LEGO pieces, so you don’t need to bring your own. Be aware that LEGO pieces are choking hazards for young children, so this program is for children ages 5+ and their caregivers. It can accommodate 30 builders. Children under age 7 must be accompanied by a caregiver. Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis on the day of the program. This program starts promptly, and any unclaimed seats will be offered to someone waiting. We appreciate your patience and understanding. Please call 617-349-4038 for more information.

CPL Nature Club: Spring Birdwatching (O’Neill)
Monday, May 6
4-5:30 p.m.

Join us as we walk to the local wildlife hotspot, Danehy Park, and search for birds! As we explore the urban outdoors, we will discuss birdwatching tips, how to identify an unfamiliar bird, and learn a little bit more about the birds we share our outdoor spaces with. A limited supply of binoculars will be available. Registration is required.

Free Drop-in Tutoring for Teens (Main)
Monday, May 6 and Wednesday, May 8
5-6 p.m.

Need help with a class? Have a question before an exam? Tutors are available to help you! Cambridge School Volunteers and the Library are pleased to offer tutoring services in the Teen Room on Mondays and Wednesdays. Please contact us with any questions at 617-349-4027 (voice) or via relay at 711.

Chess Hour (Boudreau)
Monday, May 6
6-7 p.m.  

Come join us for a chess challenge. Players of all ages and skill levels are welcome to participate. Chess sets will be provided, but feel free to bring your own if you prefer. This is not an instructional class, but rather a gathering for anyone who wants to play and test their skills against other members of the community. Registration is not required.

ESOL Class (Valente)
Monday, May 6
6-7 p.m.

Join us for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)! This class will be taught at a beginner level. No testing is needed, and everyone is welcome. For more information, call Maria Balestrieri at 617-349-4013.


The Call Is Coming from Inside the House: A Personal Essay Workshop with Alysia Abbott (Main)

Monday, May 6
6-8 p.m. 

Explore the complexities of writing about family—the opportunities, the challenges, and the benefits. This course, which meets once a week for three weeks, is designed both for those who are just beginning to write nonfiction and those who have drafts they want to deepen. Registration is required.

Internet Basics (Main)

Tuesday, May 7
11 a.m.-Noon

Learn about the Internet and accessing websites. We will have laptops and mice prepared for the class. To view and register for other Basic Tech Classes at the Library, please go to tinyurl.com/basictechclass.

Zing Laser Cutting 101 (Main)
Tuesday, May 7, 1-2:30 p.m.
Thursday, May 9, 10-11:30 a.m.

Learn how to use our Epilog Zing—an industry-standard laser cutting machine. Complete this workshop to earn a badge for the Zing laser cutter. With a badge, you can reserve the Epilog Zing to use on our equipment booking page at designated times.

Note: The Epilog Zing laser cutter and Glowforge laser cutter require separate trainings. You must participate in the Glowforge workshop in order to operate our Glowforge Pro laser cutter. Registration is required.

Paint and Sip (O’Connell)
Tuesday, May 7
2-5 p.m.

Join us for a paint and sip afternoon, complete with tea and coffee, while a local artist guides us step-by-step through the process of creating a beautiful acrylic floral painting in your choice of colors. All supplies will be provided, and you'll leave with your own piece of artwork. All skill levels are welcome. Acrylic paint can stain, so please wear old clothing. Seating is limited to 8. Registration is required. This event is full, but a waitlist is available.

Sit 'n' Knit (Main)
Tuesday, May 7
2:30-3:30 p.m.

Bring your project and enjoy the company of other fiber crafters as you work, get inspired, pick up skills, and socialize. Knit, embroider, crochet, spin, and mend. Refreshments will be provided.

Drop-in Tech Help (Central Square)
Tuesday, May 7
4-6 p.m.

Looking for some basic computer or mobile device guidance? Want help using an online resource? Need someone to read your resume and support navigating online job applications? Join us for our drop-in help hours. No registration is required. If you have any questions, please contact library@cambridgema.gov.

STEAM Academy: iFp Labs (Main)
Tuesday, May 7
2:30-7 p.m.

Innovators for Purpose (iFp) Labs start with students' interest in building a better world and introduce them to the underlying science and math principles that will bring their solutions to life. Youth in the 7th and 8th grades are invited to join iFp on a journey into the world of artificial intelligence with “Smart Cars AI: Driving Innovation for All.” This 13-week adventure invites students to dive into the world of self-driving cars at the intersection of technology and innovation.

Board Game Night for Adults (Valente)
Tuesday, May 7
6-7:30 p.m.

Join us for an evening of board games. We have Ticket to Ride, Settlers of Catan, Scrabble, chess, checkers, Boggle, Bananagrams, and more! Feel free to bring a board game to play with others. We will provide pizza and beverages. Registration helpful.

Knitting Group (Boudreau)
Tuesday, May 7
6:30-7:30 p.m.

Bring your project, yarn, and needles to enjoy an hour in the company of other crafters.

3D Printing 101: Game Piece Design (Main)
Tuesday, May 7
7-8:30 p.m.

Learn how to create your favorite game piece in digital space and print it out using our Sindoh 3D printers. In this workshop, you will get hands-on experience running the 3D printer, gain fundamental 3D modeling skills using Tinkercad, and earn your 3D Printing badge for future reservations in The Hive. Before taking this workshop, you will need to complete The Hive Safety Training and create a free Tinkercad account at www.tinkercad.com. Parents may need to assist users under the age of 18 to create an account. Register here. 

Meet and Greet with Our New Librarian for Older Adults (Main)
Wednesday, May 8
10-11 a.m.

We're looking for your input! Do you have ideas about programming, services, or social connection? Join us for a casual conversation with the new Librarian for Older Adults about what successful senior programming looks like to you. Refreshments will be provided. 

English Conversation Practice, Intermediate (O'Neill)

Wednesday, May 8
1-2:30 p.m.

Join us for an English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Conversation Practice. This group is for those with an intermediate or high level of English language skill. No testing is required. For more information on other ESOL classes, please call Maria Balestrieri at 617-349-4013.

Résumé and Job Application Support (Central Square) 
Wednesday, May 8
1-3 p.m.

Looking for assistance creating a résumé or finding jobs? Join us for assistance with job hunting and online applications. No registration is required. For more information, call Maria Balestrieri at 617-349-4013.

Half-Day Take and Make (Valente)
Wednesday, May 8
1-3 p.m.

Stop by the Library after school to pick up a Take & Make kit. Take it home with you and get creative! No registration is required for this free event. Available while supplies last. 

Serger Training (Main)
Wednesday, May 8
1-2:30 p.m.

Are you an intermediate or advanced sewer? This workshop will cover serger machine setup, threading a serger, and identifying correct tension settings with different types of fabric. You will learn about ways to use our Elna Extend 864 Air serger to take your sewing skills to the next level by producing special finishing styles, hemming, trimming, and assembling your garments. Registration is required. This workshop is full; a waitlist is available.

This workshop is designed for patrons who already have experience using a sewing machine. If you are new to machine sewing, we recommend you take our Sewing 101 workshop before using our serger.

Wednesdays of Wonder - WOW! (O'Neill)
Wednesday, May 8
3-4:30 p.m.

Come to the Library for games and a different activity each week! Kids of all ages can hang out and do crafts or STEAM activities. No registration is required. This week we will be having fun with beads.

Creating Comics Workshop (Main)
Wednesday, May 8
2:30-4 p.m.

Learn all the steps to create your very own graphic novel with local artist and author Dean Calusdian! Participants will learn everything from storytelling to panel design to lettering to publishing and then have a chance to try penciling and inking on their own. For ages 8-12. Space is limited. Tickets are available on a first come, first served basis on the day of the program.

One-on-One Tech Help by Appointment (Boudreau)
Wednesday, May 2
4-4:45 p.m.

Would you like help navigating the Library's e-resources like Libby or Hoopla? Or maybe you need some basic computer or mobile device guidance? Book a free one-on-one tech help session at the Boudreau branch. If you have questions, please send them to ipachoncaballero@cambridgema.gov. Registration is required.

CPL Presents: Hilke Schellmann, author of The Algorithm: How AI Decides Who Gets Hired, Monitored, Promoted, and Fired, And Why We Need to Fight Back (Main)
Wednesday, May 8
6-7:30 p.m.

Hilke Schellmann is an Emmy award-winning investigative reporter and assistant professor of journalism at New York University. As a contributor to The Wall Street Journal and The Guardian, she writes about holding artificial intelligence (AI) accountable. In The Algorithm: How AI Decides Who Gets Hired, Monitored, Promoted, and Fired, And Why We Need to Fight Back, she investigates the rise of AI in the world of work. Drawing on exclusive information from whistleblowers, internal documents, and real-world tests, she discovers that many of the algorithms making high stakes decisions are biased, racist, and do more harm than good. Registration is required.

Wednesday Word Puzzles (O’Connell)
Wednesday, May 8
6:30-7:30 p.m.

Drop in to try some fun puzzles every week: word searches, riddles, and variety crosswords! You can come alone or bring a grown-up. Recommended for ages 11 and up. No registration is required. E-mail cmeisler@cambridgema.gov for more details.

Brewery Book Club (Lamplighter Brewing)
Wednesday, May 8
7-8:30 p.m.

You’re invited to our May Brewery Book Club, where Lamplighter and the Library team up to highlight contemporary works from marginalized voices while having a beer. This month we’ll read Land of Milk and Honey by C Pam Zhang. Register here.

Wellness for Seniors: Zumba Gold (Main)
Thursday, May 9
11-11:45 a.m.

Put on your dancing shoes to improve flexibility and balance, strengthen muscles, and have fun! The Certified Zumba Gold instructor Emily B. will lead you through 45 minutes of low-impact and easy choreography. Registration is required. This workshop is full; a waitlist is available.

Puzzle Party (Main)
Thursday, May 9
2:30-3:30 p.m.

Join our librarians for tea, cookies, and a jigsaw puzzle. An hour of fun and conversation on a Thursday afternoon.

Read to a Dog (O’Neill)
Thursday, May 9
3-4 p.m.

Read with a cuddly friend! Trained therapy dogs provide warm and nonjudgmental reading companions for new or experienced readers up to age 14. Registration for each 10-minute time slot is required and begins one week in advance by calling or visiting the O’Neill Branch (617-349-4023).

Chocolate Tasting for Teens (Valente)
Thursday, May 9
3:30-4:30 p.m.

Sample a variety of chocolates and vote for your favorites. This program is for teens and tweens ages 11-14. No registration is required. Chocolate is available while supplies last.

Read to a Dog (Boudreau)
Thursday, May 9
3:30-4:30 p.m.

Read with Ana the Therapy Dog! Therapy dogs provide warm and nonjudgmental reading companions for new or experienced readers of all ages. Registration for each 10-minute time slot is required. Sign up the day of the program by phone or in person at the Boudreau Branch (617-349-4017).

Spring Linocut Workshop (Collins)

Thursday, May 9
5-7 p.m.

Create beautiful linocut prints! No experience is necessary. Students will be introduced to the printmaking process of linocut. The class will cover techniques in carving linoleum, composition, ink mixing, and printing. Space is limited, registration is required.

The Hive Safety Training (Virtual)
Thursday, May 9
7:30-8 p.m.

Are you interested in using The Hive? In this workshop, you will learn about our makerspace, how to use our resources, and how to keep safe in The Hive.
Find out what you need to get started as a maker in The Hive here. Completion of The Hive Safety Training is the entry point to making, innovating, and collaborating in this space. Makers must also sign The Hive User Agreement and Waivers.

Videography 101 (Main)
Friday, May 10
9:30-10:30 a.m.

Step into The Hive's state-of-the-art recording studio and film a short video of yourself in front of our green screen. Then, spend some time becoming familiar with video editing software while working with your footage. Registration is required. This workshop is full; a waitlist us available.

Cambridge Young Authors' Squad (O'Neill)
Friday, May 10
4-5 p.m.

Young people ages 10-14 who love to write are welcome to share their ideas and writing. There will be time for share-outs/workshopping, as well as group or solo writing. Snacks are provided! If you are attending for the first time, registration is helpful but not required.

Series: Collage Studio (Valente)
Friday, May 10
4-5:30 p.m.

Collage is an art form that uses many different materials to create a picture! We will study books that use collage, plan and create our own projects, and host an art opening to share our creative work with family and friends!

Sessions begin on Friday, April 26, and run on Fridays through May 17. This four-week art workshop is for kids ages 8-11. No experience is necessary! Registration is required. Participants must attend all sessions and have read Scraps by Lois Ehlert before the first session. Stop by the Valente Branch to pick up a copy or call 617-349-4015. For questions about Collage Studio, please e-mail mfrench@cambridgema.gov.

XR Lab 101 (Main)
Saturday, May 11
9:30-10:30 a.m.

Extended reality (XR) opens the door to worlds and experiences outside the everyday through virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality equipment. Test drive our Microsoft HoloLens augmented reality glasses, Structure Sensor 3D scanner, Merge headsets, and more. Registration is required. You must complete The Hive Safety Training before registering for this workshop. This workshop is full; a waitlist is available.

Dinoman (Main)
Saturday, May 11
11 a.m.-Noon

With magic, merry mayhem, and magnificent inflatable dinosaurs, Dinoman will take you on a trip through the Mesozoic Era. Recommended for children ages 4 and up and their caregivers. No registration is required.

Mother’s Day Paint ’n’ Sip (Main)
Saturday, May 11
Noon-1:30 p.m.

Haven't started on that special gift for mom? Come to the Library and learn beginner-friendly watercolor tips with the artist Nella Mareti. This class is a great way to celebrate Mother's Day with loved ones, and you'll leave with a personalized card. Light nonalcoholic drinks will be provided. Registration is required. This workshop is full; a waitlist is available.

Drop-in Maker Studio (O’Neill)
Saturday, May 11
1-3 p.m.

Come to the Library to create something special! Use your own supplies or try out our equipment. You can use our 1-inch button maker, 2.5-inch button maker, 3D Doodle pens, or Janome sewing machines. The Library will provide basic supplies. Learn more.

Studio Recording 101 (Main)

Saturday, May 11
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Are you interested in podcasting, audio production, or video production? The Hive has two state-of-the-art recording studios! Join this workshop to become familiar with studio equipment and software. Registration is required. You must complete Hive Safety Training before registering for this workshop.

Sewing 101 (Main)
Saturday, May 11
2:30-4 p.m.

In this workshop, you’ll learn the basics of sewing machine operation and safety. This session will cover machine setup, basic functions, threading the machine, reloading the bobbin, sewing straight stitches, and recognizing when stitch tension has gone awry. We’ll also cover some safety best practices when operating a sewing machine. As we learn together, we’ll work on a simple project—a drawstring bag—which most students will be able to complete by the end of the class. Registration is required. You must complete The Hive Safety Training before registering for this workshop. This workshop is full; a waitlist is available.


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All the best!

Maria McCauley, Ph.D.
Director of Libraries

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The City of Cambridge does not discriminate, including on the basis of disability. We may provide auxiliary aids and services, written materials in alternative formats, and reasonable modifications in policies and procedures to people with disabilities. For more information, contact us at library@cambridgema.gov, 617-349-4032 (voice), or via relay at 711.