Blog module icon

All Blog

Find out what's happening in the blog. Below is a list of blog items.

May 12

Boating in Kansas

Posted to From the Reference Desk... by Brian Herder

It is almost summer and school will soon be out, and that means summer recreation. Kansas has many fine lakes and reservoirs, so it is no surprise that boating is a common Kansas pastime. Just like automobiles, operating a boat is regulated by the state of Kansas, primarily in the interests of safety, environmental stewardship, and taxation.

Boating regulations fall under the jurisdiction of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism. An excellent place to start informing oneself about boating in Kansas is the KDWPT's Boating page, containing numerous articles and links.

While no one under the age of 12 is allowed to operate a powerboat without direct supervision, Kansans between the ages of 12 and 20 can take a KDWPT course and receive a certificate allowing them to do so. If one is 21 or older, or any age operating a non-motorized boat, a certificate is not required.

By law, motorboats and sailboats in Kansas are required to be registered and are taxed annually as personal property.

Kansas statutes and administrative regulations governing boat operation in Kansas can be found here.

Although frequently overlooked, an important aspect of responsible boating involves following established practices to avoid the introduction or spread of aquatic nuisance species. Aquatic nuisance species are organisms foreign to Kansas waters that can devastate the native ecosystem because they are over-competitive against native species. In addition to permanently altering the recreational environment, invasive species have been estimated to cost the US economy up to $137 billion each year.

Apr 20

Closing Kansas Rural Schools in the 1940s

Posted to KGI Online Library by Bill Sowers

In the early 1900s the rural population of Kansas began to decrease. With this loss of population came the  dissolution and consolidation of rural institutions.  One of the most important rural institutions was the rural school, popularly known as the "one-room schoolhouse."  As these schools, scattered all over the Kansas landscape, closed one by one, remaining students had to attend schools covering a greater geographic area.

The closure of rural schools in Kansas brought about dramatic changes in the school districts map of the state.  A legislative research report was ordered and published in 1942 which included statistics on school district closings, reasons for closings, the development of "school centers," changes in the school district taxing system, transportation costs in larger rural districts and state aid to education in Kansas.

The document, "Closed Schools in Kansas" (1942. Kansas Legislative Council Research Department), included a large map of the state indicating types of schools, school boundaries, schools closed or consolidated, and districts where students from closed schools were sent.  This map is an amazing look at loss of population in rural areas by looking at the closure of rural school districts.

We have this publication online at the State Library of Kansas' KGI Online Library, along with the large statewide map.  The map is located at the end of the online document.  It appears in eight separate sections which you can magnify to get a closer look at the districts and movement of students within the state. To zoom into a map just click on the "Download" tab on the top right of the page, click on "open" and then increase the percentage view of the pages.

(1942. Kansas Legislative Council. Research Department)

(Special thanks for making the map viewable goes to Trista Philippi)

May 19

Digital Books: Webinar Archives

Posted to Librarian News by Lianne Flax

The spring Digital Book webinars are now complete, so we’re detailing the notes and archives. During most of the sessions we put this Digital Book FAQ sheet in the chat.

Youth Digital Books: Britannica E-STAX, Tumblebooks, BookFlix
Archive - Powerpoint slides
Reminders and News:
  • Summer Reading Kids Book of the Week will start June 2.
  • Tumblebooks has been working on an *optional* mobile app (mostly for smartphones). We will let you know when this is set up and provide further information. 
  • Reminder: BookFlix & Tumblebooks are the public library subscription only and schools should not use them in lessons/curriculum. E-STAX is school-friendly! More information here.
eBooks: Freading & Total Boox
Archive - Powerpoint slides
New in the last year from these systems:
  • Total Boox –began experimenting with ebooks containing audio. There’s very few of these titles, but it is a good start on their goal of one day including more materials of this kind and having regular audiobooks as well. See this shelf of Oxford abridged classics if you would like to check one out and try it.
  • Freading
    • Added the ability to sort categories and sub-categories by latest arrival to show newest books first. 
    • Can generate local stats from the KSLC now. See Librarians->Digital Books->Statistics for a year to date spreadsheet. Other ebook vendors have not finished this work yet.
eBooks: Cloud Library & Enki Library
Archive - Powerpoint slides
New in the last year from these systems:
  • Cloud Library
    • Name change last fall from 3M Cloud Library to Cloud Library. 
    • Addition of ChromeBook app. 
    • Addition of Online Reader (access point for anyone without an app/software option). 
  • Enki Library: 
    • Adding more always available collections (unlimited copies) like Dark Horse Graphic Novels, Library Journal Self-E Select. 
    • Building a SimplyE for Enki members (one ebooks app that would show books from all vendors we have, no need for multiple ebooks apps). Still on the horizon but getting closer all of the time.
Audiobooks: OneClickdigital
Archive - Powerpoint slides
Big News: this summer Recorded Books will rename all of their digital platforms to RBdigital (OneClickdigital, Zinio) AND there will be a large update to the mobile apps. Skip forward to time marker 20:05 on the archive to see just this information explained. Current timeline for these changes is mid-June, expect more details from us soon.