Author Archives: resourceress

About resourceress

resourceress, poet, educator, writing mentor, mindfulness teacher, human equality advocate, traveler, hiker, star gazer, kayaker (on flat water, not the frothy stuff)

Get Outside with this fun new kit

In celebration of Earth Day and in collaboration with the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the MW Library is delighted to offer Get Outside kits to support your explorations in the great outdoors.

These kits, packaged in a MLWGS string pack, contain three laminated Pocket Naturalist Guides: Virginia Birds, Virginia Wildlife, and Virginia Trees and Wildflowers, a pocket microscope with 20x magnification and a UV light for taking a slightly closer look at leaves, rocks, and other natural objects, and perhaps most importantly, a parking pass for Virginia State Parks!

The borrowing period for these kits is three days and there are two kits available. If you’d like to borrow a parking pass without the supporting items, there is one additional parking pass available for three-day borrowing as well.

While you’re in the library, browse the display of related books, such as The Forest Unseen by David Haskell and Tristan Gooley’s The Lost Art of Reading Nature’s Signs.


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Posted by on April 23, 2019 in news


Instantly see if a book on Amazon is available in your public library

I understand the lure of books. But the next time you’re about to click “Add to Cart” on or, imagine that you could see right there, without leaving the web site, whether the book was available in your public library.

screenshot of Library Extension as displayed on for Henrico County Public Library, showing "the carrying" - 2 of 2 copies availableThere’s a FREE extension for Chrome and Firefox that does just that!  It’s called Library Extension. After you add it and select your public libraries, the book’s availability automatically appears beside the book. It currently works on Amazon, Barnes & Noble’s web site, Goodreads, and a few other sites.

While we’re talking about public libraries, remember that Richmond, Chesterfield, and Henrico libraries practice reciprocity, so if you’re a resident and active library user in one of those localities, you can borrow books from libraries in the other two.  And yes, Library Extension can search all three systems at once! If your public library subscribes to Overdrive or Hoopla for digital books, those results appear as well.

Once you see that a book is available at your public library, click “Borrow” to go to your library’s web site where you can log in to your account and reserve the book – another way to save time in your busy day.  That way, it will be on their Holds shelf when you arrive.

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Posted by on April 16, 2019 in news


Add a favorite poem to the library wall

April is both School Library Month AND National Poetry Month!

As your librarian and a poet, I’m rather enamored with this combination and it makes this month a perfect time to feature POEMS treasured by MLWGS Dragons – students & faculty – on the LIBRARY’s message wall.

image of library's message wall that reads "April is National Poetry Month - Print and post one of your favorite poems below (see Ms. DeGroat for tape)"

So…please help me amplify poetry awareness in our school library.

How, you ask? Please pick a favorite poem, print it, and post it on the library’s message wall.  Include the poet’s name on the printed copy. Then, after you print it, jot a note on the paper that indicates “posted by [Your Name].”

To Be of Use” by Marge Piercy and “No Help for That” by Charles Bukowski have already been posted today.  Which poem will you add?

Need more poetry? Beside the message wall, you’ll find six contemporary American poetry books on display. These are just a small sampling of the classic and contemporary American poetry available in the MW Library.  For more new favorite poem possibilities, browse 808.81 and 811 on the library shelves. British poetry is in 821. Looking for poems in other languages? You’ll find French poetry in 861, Spanish poetry in 861, Russian poetry in 891, and Chinese poetry in 895.

Shelf with six poetry books on it: January Children; Seam; Native Guard; When I Grow Up I Want to be a List of Further Possibilities; Here, Bullet; and Kingdom Animalia.

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Posted by on April 11, 2019 in news


Bypass paywalls with these legit tools

Image from Unpaywall showing science article for purchase with price marked out and FREE written over it.Have you found a science journal article but hit a paywall that prompts you to pay $30+ for the article?

The article may be available in Science Direct (we have on-campus access @ MLWGS), Explora, PowerSearch, or if it’s 5+ years old, JSTOR. Passwords and JSTOR access instructions are in the Student Information Course in itslearning under Resources.

However, if you can’t find it in one of those databases, try a tool that searches legitimate Open Access (OA) repositories for a copy of the article. This won’t work every time, but when it does, it’s fantastic.

Open Access Button – paste the article’s URL, DOI (Digital Object Identifier), PMID, title, or citation into the search box OR install the Chrome extension. If it’s NOT available, it will facilitate asking the author to upload a copy to a legit OA repository. Do you have a list of article DOI’s for which you’d like to find a full-text version? Try their OASheet option (requires email address).

Unpaywall (pictured above) – Install the Chrome extension and when you’re on a web page for an article with a DOI, a padlock will display on the right of your screen: gray if an OA version is NOT available; green if one IS available. Click on the green padlock to go to the OA version. Do you have a list of article DOI’s for which you’d like to find a full-text version? Try their Simple Query tool (requires email address).

What about Google Scholar, you ask?  Those search results mix OA and paywalled sources which can slow you down. If you hit a journal paywall in your Google Scholar results, try the tools above.

Two limitations of these cool tools:

  • They usually don’t work for journals in the humanities (literature, history, etc.)
  • They usually don’t work for book chapters, only journals (however, sometimes you may find that a book chapter was first published as a journal article)

That said, they can improve your research experience and efficiency in science!

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Posted by on March 28, 2019 in news