Website of the Week: How to Research a Quotation

This week’s  Website of the Week, is How to Research a Quotation by Sharon Rickson at the New York Public Library.

What do all the following quotations have in common?

“Not everything that counts can be counted.”

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

“Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

“Two things inspire me to awe–the starry heavens above and the moral universe within.”

“Education is that which remains, if one has forgotten everything he learned in school.”

“When you sit with a nice girl for two hours you think it’s only a minute, but when you sit on a hot stove for a minute you think it’s two hours. That’s relativity.”

None of them were ever said by Albert Einstein!

The nature of the internet, Social Media and search algorithms means that the attribution of authorship for a particular quote or saying seems to gain authority each time it is read, shared, repeated and re-shared. Often the wording, the original source or the actual author of the quotation itself becomes confused, misattributed or completely lost. In place of a definitive author and source for even famous quotations, people tend to repeat and share exactly what they first read without researching or checking if the details are correct and verifiable.

Like a snowball gathering weight and mass as it travels downhill, many now famous quotes are still being wrongly associated with famous figures as they continue to be re-posted and re-shared via Social Media and the Internet. 

This excellent NYPL article gives us plenty of tips and tricks to help identify and confirm who actually said or wrote that quote you want to use. 

He Said, She Said….

or did they?

Some more Quote Hunting Resources:

Quote Investigator

 “Hemingway Didn’t Say That: The Truth Behind Familiar Quotations.” by Garson O’Toole

Website of the Week: Somerset Wildlife Trust

This week’s  Website of the Week, is Somerset Wildlife Trust

As the weather hopefully improves and the flowers start to emerge you may be looking for a new place to walk, relax or spot some wildlife. The Somerset Wildlife Trust maintains an excellent website with loads of interesting and useful information on local areas, including ancient woodlands, nature reserves and sites of specific scientific and environmental interest. 

If you click on the image above you can search for a reserve near you, complete with essential information for a visit, including maps, directions and lists of facilities nearby and points of interest.

Photo by S. Bull

For lots more information on the important work Somerset Wildlife Trust does check out these links below:

Website of the Week: Poetry Foundation

This week’s  Website of the Week, is Poetry Foundation.

The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience.

The Poetry Foundation works to raise poetry to a more visible and influential position in our culture. The Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery, and encouraging new kinds of poetry.

The Poetry Foundation website focusses on US-based poets and poetry past and present. The site hosts a vast array of information on contemporary poets and movements as well as a large archive of recordings of recited poetry that you can listen to. You can even sign up for an ‘audio poem of the day’, delivered to your inbox daily.

For a bunch of other Poetry related resources why not visit our dedicated Poetry page on this very blog.

pic by Steven Johnson

Website of the Week: Crash Course

This week’s  Website of the Week, is Crash Course.

Crash Course is an educational YouTube channel started by John and Hank Green (collectively the Green brothers), who first achieved notability on the YouTube platform through their VlogBrothers channel. You may know John Green as the best-selling author of The Fault in our Stars, PapertownsAn Abundance of Katherines and Looking for Alaska.

The folks at Crash Course believe that high quality educational videos should be available to everyone for free! Subscribe for weekly videos from their current courses! Right now, they’re producing Organic Chemistry and European History. They have also recently teamed up with Arizona State University to bring you two more courses: Study Hall Composition, and Study Hall Algebra. The Crash Course team has produced more than 32 courses on a wide variety of subjects, including organic chemistry, literature, world history, biology, philosophy, theatre, ecology, and many more!

Crash Course is a great way to get a quick overview of even the most complex topics. Check it out today!








Empathy Lab Announce the 2021 Read For Empathy book collection

What a great initiative in these difficult times!

Library Lady

“Empathy is learnable – only 10% of our empathic ability is genetic. Scientists say that reading builds empathy, and this collection will play a direct role in helping raise an empathy-educated generation.”

Miranda McKearney OBE, EmpathyLab’s founder

EmpathyLab have revealed the 2021 Read For Empathy book collection after an expert judging panel weighed up hundreds of publisher submissions to select 50 of the very best contemporary empathy-boosting books for 4-16 year olds.

During my twenty years as a librarian I have seen how school libraries can act as empathy factories in their communities. The sharing of books with pupils and staff can connect individuals as a school family and encourage us to be empathetic and to show kindness in our daily lives. By stocking the right type of books and making them available to people who need them at the appropriate time libraries make a difference. These two carefully selected…

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Website of the Week:

This week’s  Website of the Week, is

Begun in 2013 this musical gem of a website allows the listener to transport themselves to any country in any decade and listen to a curated playlist of music from that era and place. Built by DJs, record collectors and music lovers our website of the week this week can transport you not only around the world but through time!!

Build your own soundtrack on a serendipitous journey across the the world and through time. You can travel in:

Shuffle Mode                                   Taxi Mode                                  Islands Mode is a great way to get exposed to new (and old) music from near and far with the details for each recording (Song Title, Artist, Country and Year of Release) shown so you can follow up anything that truly grabs you.







Food Science and Nutrition Students Hone Their Survey Skills

This week Mr Reeves’ Level 3 Food Science and Nutrition class had a remote tutorial on creating and using online surveys for their research project.

Mr Bull and Mr Reeves led the students through their top tips for designing great survey questions as well as some of the pitfalls of using online surveys to gather feedback and provide primary research for their essays.

Some of the online survey tools mentioned were Surveymonkey, Crowdsignal and Google Forms. Tools such as Crowdsignal integrate seamlessly with Twitter, WordPress and Facebook.

For more survey tools and reviews click here.


2020 : A Reader’s Year

As a Teacher-Librarian an important part of my job revolves around reading. I try to stay up-to-date with contemporary adult and young-adult authors as well as reading older, classic literature that has somehow passed me by. I also think it is crucial to read non-fiction as well as fiction.

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In these challenging times with remote learning and the current lockdown affecting us all, I think it is imperative that we strengthen, rediscover and cultivate our reading habits. If you are still on campus we can arrange to get books to you in house or if not why not try our excellent eBook service via Sora? If you would like a Sora login just get in touch by email or click here to leave a message on the blog.

In 2020 I pledged to read 37 books over the year and once again I just managed to get over the line! Last year I also completed several unabridged audio books which was a first. I hope setting myself a challenging but achievable target (40 books for 2021) will give me the motivation to read steadily all year. The full list of books from my 2020 challenge is here.

So, on New Year’s Day I usually start a new, large, hardback book by one of my favourite authors. Last year it was The Institute by Stephen King. This year I chose Perks of Being a Wallflower author, Stephen Chbosky’s second novel, Imaginary Friend.

I hope you will join me in the 2021 Goodreads Reading Challenge.

Happy New Year and Happy Reading!

Mr Bull

Head of Library

Goodreads Choice Awards Result Announced

Winners of the 12th annual Goodreads Choice Awards were announced this month. These awards are decided by readers not critics or industry moguls. Check out the shortlists and winners for all the major categories below:

Search our Heritage Catalogue to see which titles we already have or visit our Suggestions Box to order something in.

Best Fiction

Best Mystery & Thriller

Best Young Adult Fiction

Best Historical Fiction

Best Non-Fiction