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Education Matters

The Coolest Recipes to Beat the Summer Heat

Submitted by Edmonton Public Library

Written by Caroline Land

Weather forecasters are predicting a hot summer in Edmonton. Looking for ways to beat the heat? Check out EPL's collection of cookbooks for desserts that can help keep you cool all summer long. I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! These are perennial favourites and go down easy on hot summer days:

Icebox Desserts Go beyond ice cream with these ideas for cool parfaits, mousses, puddings, and more. I bet your grandparents' iceboxes never looked like this!


People's Pops Think that popsicles are just for kids? Think again! Check out some of New York City's hottest pops in this book from Brooklyn's People's Pops.


Pops! Do you like your pops chocolatey? Maybe fruit-flavoured pops are more your thing. Pops! promises icy treats for everyone, no matter what your taste preferences are.


Paletas Add a Mexican twist to your popsicles and treats with this book of recipes for paletas and other icy delights.


The Vegan Scoop Looking for a vegan alternative to ice cream? Try The Vegan Scoop for some ideas!


After you've eaten your ice cream and you need a break from the sun, drop by any of our air conditioned locations to check out even more books and cool off for even for longer!

For the full article and more information about EPL, please visit:

Top 5 Ways to Cheer Up the Lonely Days - Edmonton Public Library

Written by Hilary Kirkpatrick, EPL Outreach Worker

As a social worker for the Edmonton Public Library, I know the importance of community building and making connections for those who are feeling lonely. Having a supportive network of people and meaningful connections can give us the boost we need to feel better about ourselves and have a positive outlook on life. At EPL, there are programs specifically designed to meet the needs and interests of all EPL customers, which help bring people in the community together.

Here are the top 5 ways to utilize your local library to help alleviate loneliness:

1.     EPL Book Clubs – Book clubs offer a space where you can meet new people with similar interests (hello, fellow avid readers!) and discuss the means and motives of your favourite literary characters. Friendships are sure to blossom over a cup of tea and a wonderful book! 

2.       Baby Lap Time and Sing, Sign, Laugh and Learn Programs – New parents are at times isolated by the needs of their new little family member, and early literacy programs can provide the opportunity to make a connection for parents while babies learn through play, song and story. These interactive, free, drop-in programs are a great opportunity to connect with other new parents and give your little one a head-start.

3.       Makerspace Programs – Did you know that expressing yourself creatively in a way that is meaningful to you can help you combat loneliness? EPL Makerspace programs offers sound-booths to record a song, binding and printing services for your writing, or the opportunity to create a mini-movie with the green screen! Make friends and enjoy a fun project all at the same time!

4.       Adult Programs – Find ways to socialize based on what interest you such as learning a new hobby at the library: sewing class, adult colouring, film series, traditional arts and crafts, and more! Hobbies are a great way to meet new people, and to help yourself get out of the house. If you are feeling left out of the community because of a language barrier, EPL can help you improve your English conversations skills. We host conversation circles for English language learners that are set at your pace.

5.       Assistive Services - If you are experiencing a significant barrier or are physically unable to leave your home or a have disability, EPL provides home service where you live, whether that's an extended care facility, a seniors' lodge or your own home. We also offer specialized computers and assistive technology. If you are far away from family across the world, EPL staff can show you how to use email and Skype with your far away family members!

With EPL, connection is always possible. Let’s work together to combat loneliness and connect with our community and loved ones. A step towards visiting your local public library is a step towards ending loneliness!

What Teens Can Do To Keep Busy This Summer

by Bronwyn Hartman - Edmonton Public Library


1. Make something great: Our Makerspace has everything teens need for their next creation, including 3D printers, sound booths, a vinyl cutter and more. Encourage teens to drop by the library and get creative!

2. Find the next great read: Teens can check out our Staff Picks, talk to staff for recommendations, access eBooks and magazines through our digital collection, or just come and browse our teen section. They can also participate in one of our Summer Starts Here events happening at branches throughout the city.

3. Get in the game: Teens have a love for gaming and can join us for our many gaming programs: Minecraft, retro gaming and even old-school board games!

4. Learn something new: Our non-fiction collection and online resources have everything teens need to learn something new - from a new language, to photo editing, to digital design and more.

5. Come and hang out: On hot summer days the library is an even a cooler place to hang out! With study spaces, meeting rooms, computers and more, teens can come and lounge in an air conditioned space with us at any of our branches.

Be in the know with EPL! Sign up for EPL eNewsletter to learn more about programs and events for teens and the whole family!


For more information about Edmonton Public Library and their awesome programs, visit:

FAQ Parents Ask Long & McQuade About Music Lessons!

November 28th, 2016

What is a good age to start Music Lessons?
Many of our teachers will accept students as young as 4 to 5 years old depending on the instrument. Some of our locations offer special keyboard-based group programs that cater to preschool children, ages 3 to 5. The most common instrument choices for private lessons for the youngest students are piano, guitar, voice and violin. Both the guitar and the violin offer the convenience of smaller scale fractional instruments for these younger beginners. Curved head joints are also available for young flute students to reduce the overall length of the flute. Students wishing to learn to play full size wind instruments such as trumpet, trombone and saxophone should be able to meet the physical requirements these instruments pose. You will find the Lesson Staff and Teachers at Long and McQuade quite willing to discuss your child’s situation.

Do I need to own an instrument to take lessons?
It is necessary to have an instrument for regular practice at home, enabling the student to learn and progress with his or her newly acquired skills. Long and McQuade offers convenient and affordable student instrument rental plans for new players who do not have their own instrument.

How long does it take to learn to play an instrument?
With regular practice, new students will see results very quickly on their chosen instrument. However, it is important for students and parents to approach the study of a musical instrument as a long term process comparable to the process of learning a new language. The results should be both fun and rewarding as the student’s skill level improves incrementally. Hopefully, the study and playing of a musical instrument will become a fulfilling life long pursuit.

Can my child prepare for Royal Conservatory Examinations?
Long and McQuade teachers are able to prepare students for nationally accredited examinations with the Royal Conservatory of Music if they so desire. The successful completion of specific RCM examination levels (usually Grade 8 and higher) with the corresponding theory level exam is recognized as an equivalent secondary school music credit in many provinces. Consult your provincial Ministry of Education for music equivalency requirements.

My child will be taking piano lessons. Do we need a piano or can we use a keyboard?
This is a common question as there are many instrument choices for parents of new piano students. The traditional acoustic piano is certainly well-suited for piano study as are many of the newer and affordable ‘weighted action’ digital pianos. The smaller portable keyboards will provide touch sensitivity for some dynamic expression but because their keyboard actions are not ‘weighted’, it is more difficult for the student to develop the hand and finger strength and control that are required for piano technique. Long and McQuade offers convenient rental and purchase plans to suit any budget for keyboards, digital pianos as well as for acoustic pianos.

When can I start lessons?
Lessons at Long and McQuade can be started at any time of year. In fact, many students enjoy the opportunity of learning a new skill during the less hectic summer months.

What is the best instrument to learn on?
Certain instruments, due to their larger physical size, are not as well suited for the smallest beginners. For the most part, the ‘best’ instrument to learn on is the one that the student is most interested in. The prospect of achieving positive results will generally be higher with an instrument that the student wants to play and practice with, on a daily basis.

Can we take a ‘Trial Lesson’ to start?
We would encourage prospective students to try their new instrument for a least a month. For this reason do not advise taking a single lesson to start. However, students are able to discontinue lessons at any point with notice - even after the first lesson.

Will my child learn music theory and learn to read music?

Regardless of the musical style (pop, jazz, classical) it is important to establish a strong musical foundation with all beginners. This foundation includes an understanding of notation, music theory and technique specific to the instrument. Students will be working with a method book as well as supplementary books to achieve this. The vast selection of innovative materials and resources for beginning players on all instruments has never been greater. Being a literate musician opens the door to limitless musical possibilities for a musician.

Do you offer lessons for adults?
Adult students are always welcome and in fact, make up a sizeable segment of new lesson students. For the adult beginner, it’s never too late! In fact, despite popular opinion to the contrary, adult beginners have a distinct intellectual advantage over younger students that enables them to learn and progress faster with a new skill. Whether a mature student is pursuing a recreational approach to music making or a more traditional curriculum, Long and McQuade has many excellent instructors and materials to assist both beginner and experienced players.

What’s better to learn on, the electric or acoustic guitar?
In most cases, the exact same method books and teaching approach are used with beginning guitarists on either steel string acoustic or electric guitar. If the student is asking for an electric guitar they probably are interested in learning rock and pop styles as their skills progress. Electric guitars are the best choice for this style. Our advice to most parents is to go with the instrument that the student has expressed interest in. Electric guitars of course require an amplifier as well to get started and Long and McQuade offers a number of affordable starter guitar /amp packages. Guitar and bass amplifiers are provided for use at the music lesson.

What is the benefit of learning to play an instrument with a teacher as opposed to a self-study approach?
Learning from a teacher will enable you to progress faster by developing proper techniques with good practice habits. You will learn to read music and music theory and become a literate musician. A teacher will broaden your musical horizons by exposing you to and assisting you with learning new pieces, new songs and new styles. A teacher will motivate you, provide feedback and encourage you to continue to progress and improve your musical skills even when the going gets tough. A teacher will allow you to interact musically through the playing of duets, ensemble or group playing and develop your improvisational skills.

Visit, call or check out the website for Long & McQuade North or South

You can also watch this Global Spot  where they talk about the benefits for kids! 

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