Guest Blog: Keep Kids Learning with MSI

Adult and children work on rocket launch science project

Today we're featuring a guest blog by Bryan Wunar, director of community initiatives at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. He joins us to talk about the museum’s hands-on science activities and its collaborations with the Chicago Public Library. Just because school is out doesn’t mean learning should stop. One way to keep kids’ minds […]

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Cool Reads for Hot Summer Days

Source: moodboardphotography, Flickr

It's hot! It's so hot! Is there any way to cool off? Let's go to the beach! Join the Dinotrux crew as the Dinotrux Dig the Beach. Building sand castles in the breeze and surfing in the cool waves keeps everyone from getting too hot. And who doesn't love eating some deliciously cold ice cream? In […]

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Who’s That Google Doodle? Ida B. Wells

Ida B. Wells portrait

Any chance you noticed today’s Google Doodle? The technology company chose to mark the 153rd birthday of civil rights activist and Chicago resident Ida B. Wells. Wells began her career as a journalist in Memphis in the 1880s. There she tirelessly devoted her attention to segregation, women’s rights and suffrage, and launched an anti-lynching campaign. […]

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Irish Noir

New Square Lamp Dublin

If these hot summer days have you wishing for a cooler, if not less humid environment and your imagination runs to the dark side of the street, I may have a few books for you. The darkness of the Irish soul is a much-remarked-upon aspect of the national psyche, so get your black Celt on for […]

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The Creeping Influence of John Carpenter

The Thing DVD cover

Nostalgia is a major force in pop culture, and when it comes to movies and music these days, the 1980s loom large. The movies of directors like Steven Spielberg and John Hughes have received a lot of attention (JJ Abrams's use of lens flare as homage to Spielberg has practically worn out the Internet with commentary.), […]

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A Love Letter from Pluto

source:  Flickr, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Early this morning, NASA's New Horizons flew the closest we've ever been to the dwarf planet Pluto and sent images back to Earth. One of the most noticeable things about Pluto that we can see from these images is a large, bright heart-shaped spot. I like to think of it as Pluto's love letter to its […]

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Summer Camp at the Movies

Source: ilkerender, Flickr

Summer camp. Whether you loved it, hated it or skipped it, you can experience it vicariously—minus the bad food, insects and latrines—with these three fun movies. My favorite is the exuberant Camp, set at a musical theater camp where self-described “freaks” can be themselves and where sports counselors are without an audience. Campers include a […]

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Other Stanleys!


So now that the Chicago Blackhawks have won the Stanley Cup AGAIN, what else is there to do besides watch hockey? Well, you can download the Cup Tracker on your mobile device and follow the whereabouts of the holy grail of hockey. This may seem extreme, but it's actually pretty fun—kind of like being a […]

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Let’s Hit the Road!

driving down a road in a car

Summer always makes me long for a good road trip story, so naturally I'm completely pumped about John Green's new movie adaptation of his novel Paper Towns that comes out July 24. Paper Towns is available in other formats. If you're like me and you're looking for more road trip novels, here are a few books for […]

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We All Read for Ice Cream

Two small ice cream cones with fudge

Ice cream is delicious every month of the year and since July is National Ice Cream Month, I'll take that as an excuse to eat more sweet, cold ice cream. People have been finding ways to use snow and ice to make yummy cold desserts since the Middle Ages. Did you know that the most popular flavor of ice […]

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