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Scarborough Seniors' Discovery Fair is BACK!

September 16, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Our last Seniors' Discovery Fair was a great success, and we're very excited to announce that we're bringing it back again this year!

Join us at the Cedarbrae Branch on Thursday September 25 from 2 - 4 PM to meet with a variety of organizations and service providers. There are a number of resources and services available to older adults in the community. This is useful not only if you're a senior yourself, but also if you're a caregiver or have older relatives or friends that may appreciate information about transportation, health care and more.

Grandparents with grandson
Image courtesy of MoodBoard on a Creative Commons License.

Here are some of the groups that will be represented at this year's Seniors' Discovery Fair:

If you - or someone you know - would be interested in learning more, this is a great chance to meet with people in your community, ask questions and get free information. No registration is required and don't forget that light refreshments and prize draws will also be part of this year's Fair!

Hope to see you there!

Rediscovering Toronto's waterfront heritage

September 9, 2014 | Charlene Lee | Comments (0)

Are you looking to learn more about Toronto’s waterfront? Local lawyer turned author Jane Fairburn has written a wonderful book exploring the history of our waterfront. Her book focuses on four distinct areas: the Lakeshore, the Island, the Beach, and the Scarborough Bluffs. 

She will be giving a talk in the Cedarbrae branch to discuss the importance of these neighborhoods and how they are all interconnected with ecology and Toronto itself. Jane will help you rediscover the beautiful and important history of Toronto through the lake, and how it has evolved - from a place of hunting thousands of years ago, to the present day with its mixture of beaches, condos and businesses. 

If you are interested in local history and learning more about Toronto’s waterfront please join us Saturday September 13 from 2-3:30 pm.

Rediscover Toronto's Waterfront Heritage!

September 8, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

If you've been in Toronto for a while, chances are good that you've picnicked by the Scarborough Bluffs, gone ice skating at the Harbourfront or tanned at Woodbine Beach. But did you know what a long history some of these places have?

Come and find out more about Toronto's waterfront at a visit with author Jane Fairburn on Saturday, September 13th at 2 PM!

Historical Toronto Waterfront
Public domain image courtesy of Wikipedia

Local lawyer turned author Jane Fairburn has written a wonderful book exploring the history of our waterfront. 

Along the Shore: Rediscovering Toronto's Waterfront Heritage | Available in eBook too!

 Her book focuses on four distinct areas:

  • the Lakeshore
  • the Island
  • the Beach
  • the Scarborough Bluffs 

She will discuss the importance of these neighborhoods and how they are all interconnected with ecology and Toronto itself. Jane will help you rediscover the beautiful and important history of Toronto through the lake. Come learn how it has evolved from a place of hunting for the first people who lived here thousands of years ago to the present day with its mixture of beaches, condos and possible business ventures. 

Don't miss out on this exciting exploration of Toronto history. Hope to see you all there!

Chocolate Making at the Library

August 29, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Mmmmmmm...CHOCOLATE. There's really no better way to describe last Friday at the Cedarbrae Branch.

Chocolatier Shavaughan from Chocolate Tales joined teens to instruct them in the magical and mysterious art of chocolate making, including teaching them how to make truffles, bonbons, lava cakes, and chocolate shavings using the finest Belgian chocolate.

We got to taste some of these delicious works of art and they were just as tasty as they were beautiful.

Check out some of the pictures and videos from the workshop below!


Continue reading "Chocolate Making at the Library" »

Robots in the Library?

August 18, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

If you've wandered by the Children's Desk at the Cedarbrae Branch recently, you may have noticed a new friend hanging around:



Meet Vaksan Jr. He was created by a bright young maker in a particularly exciting session of our Make and Create Club. The theme of this session was to just GO WILD!

Kids were encouraged to take all sorts of household odds and ends we'd collected over the weeks, and design the most awesome things they could imagine. In addition to this robot, we also had some racecars, elaborate jewelry peices, and even a highly detailed landscape for a Minecraft character!

As you might be able to tell, Vaksan Jr. didn't need a whole lot of high-tech gadgetry to come to life, but he was definitely built with a lot of creative energy. Interested in getting your kids to imagine and create? Ask a librarian about other programs we offer that cultivate the maker spirit!

You may also want to check out other resources that can help guide fun projects at home as we dip into these last few weeks of summer. Here are two books that might be interesting for a younger or older child:

Make Stuff Together by Bernadette NollMake Stuff Together: 24 Simple Projects to Create as a Family

by Bernadette Noll

"Make Stuff Together gives you 24 projects to build family connections while being creative and truly enjoying your time together. The authors have uniquely broken down projects into manageable chunks for the shorter attention spans of children enabling even smaller kids to accomplish bigger projects."



Streampunk Gear, Gadgets and GizmosSteampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos: a Maker's Guide to Creating Modern Artifacts

by Thomas Willeford

 "Learn from Lord Featherstone aka Thomas Willeford as he distills his wealth of hard-learned skills, describes how to use the readily available tools of the modern mad scientist, and expounds on the art and philosophy of scavenging unique components and raw materials. The perfect companion for the hobbyist and advanced machinist alike, this inventive volume will guide you through the creation of your very own infernal devices."


There are also great websites designed for makers of all ages. Check out MAKE Magazine and Instructables for more ideas and see what creative things pop up!

Ripples in Spacetime

May 21, 2014 | Erin | Comments (0)

Ever wonder how gravity works? Or about the mysteries of black holes?


Join us this Saturday as Dr. Ilana MacDonald traces the concept of gravity from the earliest theories about how the universe works to her own fascinating research on the ripples in space-time caused by black holes.



Sat May 24, 2014

2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Cedarbrae Library program room


Part of the Thought Exchange program series.

Presented in partnership with the Dunlap Institute, Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Toronto.



Maker Culture at Your Library

May 5, 2014 | Erin | Comments (0)

In case you haven't heard, maker culture is here, it is awesome, and it is an integral part of the future of libraries. Toronto Public Library is on board, with the opening of the Digital Innovation Hubs and a variety of maker programs.

Over the past 6 months or so we have introduced a maker program for kids at Cedarbrae called Make + Create (and keep an eye out for adult programs later in the year). We choose science, technology, and art activities that are self-directed, allowing participants to use their imagination and inventive skills. We've done everything from making musical stairs and game controllers out of MaKey MaKey, to making boats out of recycled material and then having a contest to see which boat can float the most potatoes, to creating stamps for making prints, to making and launching foam rockets.

This past Wednesday we experimented with squishy circuits. Squishy Circuits is a project that came out of the Thomas Lab at St. Thomas University's School of Engineering (watch the TED Talk here) with the goal of exposing children to electricity, physics, and engineering in a fun and interactive way - with LEDs, toy motors and buzzers, and dough!

Here are some of the cool things the kids made:

A Creeper from Minecraft with a glowing heart (LED covered in conductive dough).

A snail with a glowing mouth and moving tail.

A snowman with a glowing nose.

Beach Reads with an Asian twist

April 30, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (3)

This May, as we celebrate Asian Heritage Month in Toronto, we highlight books that reflect the variety of cultures, customs and traditions of Asians, both in their native countries and abroad.

There are many very well written, serious books about issues in many of these countries. But there is also lighter fare that still shows us what life in many countries around the world can be like.

As the weather (finally!) starts to warm up, you may be looking forward to some fun, light reads you could sit out on the patio with, or take along if you're on a beach vacation.

Here are some beach reads with Asian Heritage Month in mind.

Crazy, Rich Asians
by Kevin Kwan, 2013

A juicy, gossipy novel that is a fun read. It's all about - you guessed it - some extremely elite and wealthy Asians. The families in Kwan's book are all about high fashion, exclusive parties, and some pretty serious rivalries.

Five Star Billionaire
by Tash Aw, 2013

In a similar vein as Kwan's book, Five Star Billionaire follows five characters as they make their way towards fame and fortune in the bustling city of Shanghai. Tash Aw really sets the scene, making the city and its people come alive.

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan  5 Star Billionaire by Tash Aw

Girls of Riyadh
by Rajaa al-Sanea, 2007

Although this is an older book, it's still worth a quick read if you haven't picked it up. It tells the story of some of the most hidden women in the world and reads like a Gossip Girl novel set in The Kingdom.

Cutting Loose
by Nadine Dajani, 2008

Cutting Loose is a fun, easy read about three young women who cross paths in sultry, sleek Miami and find that sometimes letting go is the best way to find who you are.

Painted Hands
by Jennifer Zobair, 2013

Described as The Namesake meets Sex and the City, Painted Hands introduces us to Amra and Zainab as they try and balance their cultural backgrounds with demands of their professional jobs.

Girls Of Riyadh by Rajaa al-Sanea  Cutting Loose by Nadine Dajani  Painted Hands by Jennifer Zobair

Have another beach read set in an Asian country or featuring Asian characters? Leave a suggestion!

If you're looking for more Asian Heritage Month reading suggestions, be sure to check out our previous list!

Survival Training

April 24, 2014 | Erin | Comments (0)

How did you fare without power back in Dec/Jan? Did you run out of food or water? Have trouble staying warm?

Then think waaaaay back to when it was hot last summer (I know, it may be hard to remember). Did you experience heat-stroke symptoms? Lose power in a rolling blackout?



What if the ice storm was worse, something like the Quebec storm of 1998? 




What if the heat wave was as intense as the one that killed 2 people in West Bengal on Wednesday?




What if you got lost hiking in a forest? Would you know how to get back? How to start a fire to keep warm?

In this year's One Book community read, The Cellist of Sarajevo, people manage to survive in a city under siege, with creates some harsh living conditions. In tomorrow's Survival Skills workshop at 5:30 pm, expert David Arama from WSC Survival School will teach you the skills you'll need in order to survive in emergencies. 



Survival Skills

5:30 - 7:00 pm

in Cedarbrae Library's program room

What's with all the Hoopla? Free digital movies and music!

April 15, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Hoopla Digital has recently launched right here at the Toronto Public Library - it's everywhere right now!

We already offer free ebooksdigital magazines and many other electronic resources, so it only makes sense that we get you some great movies, music and television series too.

Here are just a few noteworthy movie titles you can stream for free from Hoopla:

Brokeback Mountain We Need To Talk About Kevin Hanna

And don't forget the music!

Taylor Swift Red  Ultimate Grammy Collection  Divergent Original Soundtrack  Drake Nothing Was The Same

Take some time to browse through what Hoopla has to offer. When you're ready, go ahead and sign up for free with your Toronto Public Library card and email address. Not sure how to get started? You can always call your local library branch and speak to a librarian about how to begin.

Have fun with Hoopla!

Welcome! This blog is written by the Cedarbrae Library staff and we want it to become a place where you can find out what's going on in the branch and in the community. But not just that - we plan to write about all things we might find interesting.