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Lifelong Learning

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Part of NYPL's Mission is to inspire lifelong learning. No matter your age, where you are in life or what new thing you are trying to learn, you can follow this channel to get suggested resources as well as support and inspiration.

Images: How to mend broken china.
How to preserve autumn leaves.
How to increase lung power.
How to draw an ellipse with string.
How to Find the North.
How to "swat that fly".

Send Me a Letter: Books on Card and Letter Writing

While engaging in some much-needed but rarely performed spring cleaning in my apartment, I recently encountered several letters written to me by a maternal great-great aunt years ago. This dovetailed nicely with my supervisor's request that I write my April blog post on the topic of card and letter writing. Read More ›

TASC Resources: Find Free Classes and Test Prep for the High School Equivalency Exam (Formerly GED)

New York State has selected a new high school equivalency test called the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) to replace the General Educational Development (GED) as the primary pathway to a New York State High School Equivalency Diploma effective January 2, 2014.Read More ›

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder: Art Class at the Library

Whether you are the parent of a budding Picasso or a child who imbues the term "abstract art" with new meaning, the library is sure to have resources to support his or her creative pursuits.Read More ›

The Jefferson Market University: Spring 2014

The Jefferson Market Library is pleased to offer the following free courses for the spring semester, 2014.Read More ›

Find New Hobbies at the Library

My father was a fan of George Bernard Shaw, and I myself firmly believe in the wisdom of the quote often misattributed to Mr. Shaw, "Youth is wasted on the young." This adage, as well as my late father's utter exasperation when I refused to heed his wise counsel, which was a product of a combination of his prescience and a long life of various experiences, came full circle when I recently received a telephone call from my sixteen year old niece, Amanda.

After expressing my shock at receiving communication from my niece that was not of the avant l'heure kind, 

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Survival: Tips and Resources on How to Survive with Patience and Fortitude

Most New Yorkers do not aim to simply survive, but to thrive. But let’s face it, we’ve all taken it on the chin of late. People from all over, not just New Yorkers, often feel their stress-levels rising. Whether you're trying to survive workplace stress, natural disasters, or physical violence, mental toughness, physical fitness, active participation in your community and 

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Learn to Express Yourself Through Art: Free Courses for Midlife and Older Adults

Thanks to Lifetime Arts for securing funding and inviting our library system to participate, NYPL is once again able to offer free sustained art courses, taught by professional teaching artists, for adults age 55 and over. Seventeen branch libraries have received funding that enables them to host these classes, which will take place from February-November 2013, and which cover a wide variety of arts including: painting, sculpting, collage, memoir-writing/performance, drawing, and quilt-making.

Because of the great interest generated over the years, many of the 

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Conquer Clutter in 2013

Happy New Year's Eve! This year remember that the New York Public Library can help you in achieving any of your self-improvement or lifelong learning goals.

One of my favorite things about being a library user is that I don't have to go bankrupt with my info obsession. I can simply borrow anything that interests me, even a little bit! If it turns out to be a reference book or a

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Thinking about Grad School? NYPL Can Help!

As the year is coming to an end, many of us are already planning for new and exciting changes in the upcoming year. Some people may consider different vacation spots, career changes or even returning to school. If you are part of the group interested in going to graduate school, we can help!

So first you should ask yourself why you are going back to school and whether it is something worth your investment in time and money. Additionally, you may want to ask yourself:

Can I afford to go to graduate school on a full-time basis? Should I go to graduate ... Read More ›

NYPL's Gift to Online Learners... lynda.com for Free!

In this season of gift giving, the New York Public Library has just added a wonderful new resource — lynda.com — for New Yorkers who need the top of the line in online software training. NYPL's business library, SIBL, has entered into a year long pilot to provide free access to the continuously expanding library of 1,500 online training videos.

As soon as your holiday reveling has wound down, head to SIBL and plunk yourself down at one of the nine dedicated lynda.com workstations or at any of the other 

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The Art and Science of Cooking

I like to cook, but I am not much of a baker. There is one yearly exception... the transition to autumn and then the holiday season usually puts me in a baking mood. For the past few Christmases I've made biscotti — Italian cookies flavored with nuts, spices, or dried fruits. They are something of a tradition in my family. This year when I got out my mixing bowl I grabbed a dry measure for the flour and sugar, but then I put it away. I decided not to use it.

Now, I know baking is all about scientific precision! 

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The Art of the Personal Essay with Charles Salzberg

Charles Salzberg, faculty member, and one of the founders of the New York Writer's Workshop, gave a one-evening seminar at the Mid-Manhattan Library on December 11th. Sign-ups for the evening's seminar closed at the 15 people who registered online at the New York Public Library's website, but Mr. Salzberg graciously allowed in 9 more people. To introduce the program, I brought two copies of 

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My Library: Shauna

This week, we are wrapping up our second semester of French classes at Jefferson Market. After Saturday's class, we caught up with Shauna, one of the students.

What made you want to take a French class?

I've always loved languages and it's been a goal of mine to try to learn at least one or two languages fluently, in addition to English. Also: mon petit ami est français.

We are always glad to assist with romance! How did you end up taking the class here at the library?

I found out that the 

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11 Free Websites to Practice English at Home

RTlibrary on FlickrAt the New York Public Library's Adult Learning Centers, where adults work on basic English and literacy skills, we're often asked for recommendations of websites for adults to practice English at home. Below you'll find eleven sites, some with a focus on listening, some on vocabulary, others on grammar, and some with a range of activities. Happy learning!

Easy World of English

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My Library: Philosophy Class

The Jefferson Market Library continues to offer multi-session courses in subjects taught by college professors — just like you'd take in an adult continuing education program at a university. Recently we offered a free six-session Introduction to Western Philosophy course. Here's what two participants in that course, Carlos and Shaan, had to say:

Carlos

What did you think of the philosophy course?

It was great to get an overview, to look at all these different philosophers — it 

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Personal Finance Reading Recommendations

For me, the fall has always been a time of fresh starts and new beginnings. The promise of many new school years continues long past graduation as I advance in age and each autumn still feels like an opportunity.

This year I have been getting my finances in order and naturally I used library resources, the most fiscally responsible tools available. Where to start? My Financial Intelligence list of accessible personal finance resources has a few recent titles explaining 

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Celebrating Art Beyond Sight: The Value of Creating and Appreciating Art for Those with Low Vision

photo courtesy of Art Beyond SightIn October, museums and other cultural organizations throughout the U.S. and the world celebrate the 10th annual Art Beyond Sight Awareness Month. The goal: "making pictorial literacy and access to the world of art a reality for all blind people."

Elisabeth Salzhauer Axel, photo courtesy of Art Beyond SightThe organization Art Education for the Blind was founded by museum educator 

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Robot Dawn: The Stage Origins of a Sci-Fi Idol

Nothing is more strange to man than his own image. —Dr. Alquist, sole survivor of the robot rebellion.

It's standard sci-fi melodrama now: The robots evolve and become indistinguishable from their creators. They rise up and in their revolt decide to eradicate the human race. Sound familiar? Well, before you start looking for Arnold Schwarzenegger, it's not 1984 and we're not in a movie theatre. The year is 1922 and it's all happening live on stage in an Off-Broadway 

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Creative Aging Continues to Bloom at The New York Public Library

In recent decades, much has been said about the demographic changes that New York City shares with the rest of the world. Yes, we are getting older!

One widespread response has been a surge of programs to promote creativity in mid- and later life. NYPL has happily participated in these efforts, especially since 2010 when we started partnering with Lifetime Arts Inc. to offer our first Creative Aging courses, which took place in six branch libraries. Each course was taught by a professional teaching artist 

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Why Save Languages? A Few Words About Language Extinction and Revitalization

There is no language like the Irish for soothing and quieting. —John Millington Synge, The Aran Islands

An Irish Hearth. Part of a painting by Philip Gray. Used with permission of the artist.When I think of my father during my growing-up years, I usually picture him relaxing after work in a kitchen chair with a newspaper, next to the radiator. Did he sit there because its warmth took him back to the hearth that was the heart of the cottage he grew up in, in the rural west of Ireland?

Another memory is of him teaching me how to greet someone and a 

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