Morning activities merge play and learning

GrowingLikeAReadThe Newcastle Public Library continues its series of bilingual story times and activities with the next edition of Family Play Time/La Hora de jugar en familia, at 12:15 p.m. Friday, March 10.

Activities are for ages 5 and under and their caregivers and is a chance for children to learn and develop their brains through simple play.

The program is part of the Pioneer Library System's Growing Like a Read initiative and were made possible from a contribution from an anonymous donor to PLS in 2015.

Registration is not required to attend.

Join the discussion at one of the library's book groups

Rosie ProjectThe Newcastle Public Library presents multiple options for avid book readers with its monthly book discussion groups for tweens, teens and adults.

The library hosts the next session of its Brown Bag Book Discussion for adults 18 and up at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, March 9. The group is reading The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. Copies of the book are available for checkout at the library's circulation desk.

Group members are encouraged to bring their own lunch. Refreshments will also be provided courtesy of the Friends of the Newcastle Library.

The library's Teen and Tween Book Clubs host their monthly meetings at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 9. The tween group, for ages 9 to 12, will have a discussion on several St. Patrick's Day books, while the teen discussion, for ages 13 to 17, will be on The Secret Hum of a Daisy by Tracy Holczer. Each group features a related activity, discussion and snacks provided by the Newcastle Friends.

Readers of the Science Fiction and Fantasy genres can be part of the Sci-Fi and Fantasy Book Club, meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 21. This month's title is The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow.

Registration is not required to be part of any of the discussions.

PLS Big Read returns for discussion

PLSBigReadLogoFor the past decade, the Pioneer Library System has made its PLS Big Read and NEA Big Read a tradition in the springtime each year. And the 11th edition of the event is bringing literature into the 11 communities served by the library system with programs slated throughout March.

This year marks the first time the book has been a nonfiction selection and also the first time it's come from outside the NEA's list. Being Mortal, by Atul Gawande, focuses on a difficult topic – the end of life. The author, a practicing surgeon, looks into the way medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending.

The Newcastle Public Library will present a community book discussion on Being Mortal at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 7. Scholar Cynthia Thomas will lead the discussion.

Being Mortal was the 2015 Indies Choice Book Award winner in the Adult Non-Fiction category. The author also is the recipient of the Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing about Science and two national magazine awards.

The PLS Big Read is presented this year in a collaboration between PLS and the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine. Sponsors for this year's PLS Big Read are the Pioneer Library System Foundation and the Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation.

Wednesday brings Story Times to the library

KidsThe Newcastle Public Library welcomes families with young children to its weekly Pre-K Story Time, scheduled at 10 a.m. on Wednesdays, March 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29 at the library.

Each event is geared to ages 2 to 5, but younger or older children are welcome also. The story times feature not just books but songs and other activities, and a chance to learn more about the services offered for young readers at the library.

Registration is not required in advance to attend.