2018 Mock Newbery Winners

Posted on Friday, January 12, 2018 by Megan

This past fall, the Columbia Public Library hosted its sixth season of the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Awards program. Youth in grades 4-8 were invited to join us twice per month to discuss possible Newbery Medal contenders for 2018. At these interactive sessions, we discussed six Newbery contender books, and participants were able to defend the book that they felt deserved the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Award.

We read the following books:

Our group looked at criteria similar to those used by the Newbery Medal selection committee when considering top book selections. Continue reading “2018 Mock Newbery Winners”

App Review: My Very Hungry Caterpillar AR

Posted on Thursday, December 7, 2017 by Megan

My Very Hungry Caterpillar AR app photo
We tried out the “My Very Hungry Caterpillar AR” at the library! Our little caterpillar got to play on the floor, on our desks and even in the stacks of books!

What’s the app all the kids are raving about? You know, the one where they wander around in real life interacting with critters and waiting for eggs to hatch? It stars a brightly-colored beloved character you might recognize from your own childhood–and it’s not Pokemon Go!  I’m talking about “My Very Hungry Caterpillar AR” app by StoryToys Entertainment Limited ($2.99).

This app is recommended for ages 4 and up. There is no text in this app, and you only have to know how to drag and drop to begin game play (which makes it perfect for a younger audience). The primary goal is to feed and care for your caterpillar. This is a great way to talk about the life cycle of a butterfly, though it is not 100% scientifically accurate. (You can play catch and create artwork with your caterpillar, which not something I would try real life!) As of right now, this app is only available for iPhone and iPad.

If you are interested in a free Eric Carle app, you should try “The Very Hungry Caterpillar–Play & Explore.” Both apps are super cute and engaging but also have some in app purchase options, so make sure you enjoy them together with your child.

Happy apping!

Introducing Evie!

Posted on Friday, December 1, 2017 by Megan

Photo of Evie and WebsterMeet Evie (EE-vee) the fox–our new Baby, Oh, Baby and Toddler Time mascot at the Columbia Public Library.

Evie loves to scurry and sprint near Webster’s pond. She saw how much fun he had during story time, so she decided to join us! Webster the duck will be passing the torch to Evie at the end of December and will be collecting his retirement package. (He’s taking a lump sum–largely in bills.)

Starting Thursday, January 4, Evie will be working full-time at the library, and she even has a new song!  Below are the lyrics. Feel free to practice them with your little one at home.

Continue reading “Introducing Evie!”

Wonder: Book & Movie

Posted on Thursday, November 2, 2017 by Megan

Should you read the book then watch the movie, or should you watch the movie then read the book? Some folks will tell you the book is always better than the movie. Those same people may even judge you if you read the book after seeing the movie. However, I am not one of those folks. Read then watch. Watch then read. As long as you are reading, you really can’t go wrong! You do you!

Wonder Movie CoverSpeaking of books turned into movies, the amazingly moving book “Wonder” by Raquel J. Palacio has been turned into a film, releasing on November 17. “Wonder” is the story of a boy named Auggie who has been homeschooled for most of his life due to a number of surgeries he had as a young boy. When he hits fourth grade, his parents decide to put him in public school, but his surgeries have left him with scars that draw unwanted attention from his new classmates.

This story is told from three different points of view, triumphantly sharing how you can overcome any obstacle with the help of friends and family. Reserve a copy of “Wonder” at your library now (or after you’ve seen the movie)!

You can find more books to movies in our catalog.

Halloween Happenings Near You!

Posted on Thursday, October 5, 2017 by Megan

Photo of painted pumpkinsHalloween is less than a month away! Do you have your costume? Have you carved your pumpkin? Is your trick-or-treat bag ready to be filled? Don’t be frightened; you still have plenty of time to get your goblins all in a row! And if you don’t have time to plan a party, there are plenty of FREE haunted happenings that you can attend locally!

Columbia

Mizzou After Dark: Spooktacular
October 25, 2017 › 7:00-11:00 p.m.
First Floor, MU Student Center

Visit this huge Halloween party in Columbia. There will be a haunted house, pumpkin carving, a costume contest and more. And it’s free with a MU student ID.

Howl-O-Ween
Friday, October 27, 2017 › 5:00-7:00 p.m.
Kuhlman Court, MU Student Center

Do you like puppies? Do you like costumes? Bring your pups in their best costume for a chance to win some prizes!

(Not So) Frightening Friday
Friday, October 27 › 4:00-6:00 p.m.
The District, Downtown Columbia

Come trick-or-treat in The District! Continue reading “Halloween Happenings Near You!”

Cosplay Costume Con Recap

Posted on Thursday, August 10, 2017 by Megan

On Friday, August 4, we were delighted to host a crowd of all ages for our 3rd Annual Cosplay Costume Con. This year, the event was held after normal library hours, and the participants used the lobby as their runway to strut their stuff! Everyone came dressed in their finest gear from Eowyn to Spider-Man, with representatives from nearly every pop culture fandom. Prizes were provided by the library, Distant Planet Comics, Ragtag Cinema, and Central Missouri Renaissance Festival.

Below are some pictures of our awesome participants.

Continue reading “Cosplay Costume Con Recap”

Free Summer Lunch Programs for Kids

Posted on Thursday, July 6, 2017 by Megan

Photo of a girl eating watermelonFor many children, school is the only place they are guaranteed a meal. So what happens when school is out? There are several locations in Central Missouri that provide lunches for children under 18.  Please see below for more information about these programs.

Columbia

Lunch in the Park
Dates: July 5-August 4 (weekdays only)
Time: 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Location: Douglass Park Shelter, 400 N. Providence Rd.

All children are welcome to enjoy lunch in the park on weekdays! Lunch will be served at the Douglass Park shelter. This program is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture, and the food program is carried out in a partnership between the City’s Health Department and Voluntary Action Center. Library staff will visit every Monday, July 11-July 31 to gather Summer Reading sign-ups, give out reading incentives, lead activities and more. Continue reading “Free Summer Lunch Programs for Kids”

Summer Reading Begins!

Posted on Thursday, June 1, 2017 by Megan

SR 2017 logoStarting today, we will be welcoming readers of all ages to come by one of our library branches or bookmobiles to sign up for this year’s Summer Reading program! The theme this year is “Build a Better World,” and we aim to help you do that by providing lots of awesome FREE programs here at the library. Once you complete the reading and activities in your Summer Reading challenge, you can stop by starting July 5 for a free book and a chance to win other fun rewards! For a full list of programs, pick up a schedule at your nearest branch or view the programs online.

Audiobooks We Love: The Inquisitor’s Tale

Posted on Thursday, May 4, 2017 by Megan

"The Inquisitor's Tale" book coverI just can’t stop talking about this audiobook. It has everything–children saving the day, dogs that come back from the dead and farting dragons! What’s not to love? Adam Gidwitz’s “The Inquisitors Tale, or, the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog is not for the faint of heart. Set during the dark ages, this book deals with medieval politics and religion but is very relevant to today. It was a 2017 Newbery honoree, and it deserves the acclaim.  

Both the book and audiobook have their own unique qualities. If you read the book, you will find examples of illuminated manuscripts, but if you choose to listen to the audiobook, you will be treated to a full cast reading (which means every narrator has their own distinct voice). In addition, you will have the pleasure of hearing an old professor singing the classic German battle song “The Song of Hildebrand.” Continue reading “Audiobooks We Love: The Inquisitor’s Tale”

Audiobooks We Love: National Library Week Edition

Posted on Thursday, April 6, 2017 by Megan

Photo of child wearing headphonesAre you bored with turning pages? Are you tired of your arms falling asleep while you try to read a heavy tome? Then you should try listening to audiobooks!

Personally, I love audiobooks and prefer being read to than reading a book. Not only are they a great way to while away the hours, they are good for you too! Studies show that audiobooks increase reading accuracy by 52% and improve reading comprehension by 76%. Want to learn more about the benefits of listening to audiobooks? check out this infographic from the Audio Publishers Association.

Here are some activities for your family to do as you listen to audiobooks.

  • Play “I Spy” using words from your book!
  • Act out parts from the book or imitate your favorite characters and see if your family and friends can guess them!
  • Ask questions and discuss as you go to enhance the reading experience.   It’s a great way to make sure everyone is listening.

Continue reading “Audiobooks We Love: National Library Week Edition”