Part fairy tale, part historical fiction, “Echo” by Pam Muñoz Ryan tells the story of three characters united by one unique harmonica. The story begins when the harmonica is entrusted to a boy named Otto by three magical sisters in an enchanted forest. It then resurfaces during World War II and finds its way into the hands of three other characters. The harmonica has a powerful impact on each person who hears and plays it, and eventually it is responsible for saving a life. “Echo” is one audiobook I cannot recommend enough! While I’m sure reading the physical book is great, listening to the audiobook was pure joy. Besides having a full cast of characters to read each part, all of the of music that is referenced in the book is played in the audiobook. The harmonica is truly its own character within the book. Continue reading “Audiobooks We Love: Echo”
One of my absolute favorite things to do as a kid was to gather my crayons and paper and plunk myself down to color a new masterpiece. Little did I know that this creative hobby of mine had a positive effect on my development. When children draw shapes, color within the lines and cut out patterns, they’re further developing their fine motor coordination. Additionally, the time and patience needed to completely color a page helps children develop their self regulation, and creating a great piece of art can boost a child’s self esteem.
Last month my mom received the cutest Valentine – a little robot made from a juice box and other snacks. We both loved how kid friendly this treat was and how easy it is to recreate. You can also use healthier options, depending on who will be enjoying (aka eating) the robots.This craft is easy for kids to make, and it’s a wonderful project to gift to others. Continue reading “Juice Box Robots”
Did you know that Miami, Florida was founded by a woman named Julia Tuttle? Did you know Sandra Day O’Connor was the first woman on the Supreme Court? Why do I ask these questions? Because today (March 8) is International Women’s Day! This day, set aside every year since the early 1900s, is a day to celebrate women’s accomplishments all over the world. If you miss the chance to celebrate today, don’t worry, because March is Women’s History Month. In honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, the display at the Columbia Public Library on the first floor next to the children’s desk will showcase books featuring awesome women and their accomplishments. Here are a couple of great books that you may see featured on the display.
“Ada Byron Lovelace and the Thinking Machine” by Laurie Wallmark is a remarkable story about a young woman who loved numbers. Despite many challenges in life, she never gave up her passion for math. Ada nicknamed herself the Bride of Science because she wanted people to understand she could be more than a wife and mother, which were the only widely accepted roles for women at the time. Because of her work, Ada is a considered the first computer programmer. In October of every year there is an Ada Lovelace Day to celebrate women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Continue reading “Happy International Women’s Day!”
March 2nd is Dr. Seuss’ birthday – he would be 112 this year! It can be hard to imagine what children’s books would look like today without the incredibly creative and inspiring books of Dr. Seuss. He wrote stories that are hard to put down, and he created characters that are impossible to forget. Memorable characters such as the Cat in the Hat, the Grinch, Thing 1 and Thing 2, Horton the Elephant and the Lorax are still popular after many decades. To help celebrate such an icon of literature, I have listed some little known fun facts about Dr. Seuss himself:
Has your family read with TumbleBooks lately? TumbleBooks is an online collection of animated picture books. The books are created by taking existing picture books and adding animations, sound, music and narration to produce an electronic picture book. TumbleBooks offers fiction, nonfiction and graphic novel titles in English, Spanish and French. Chapter books are also available. All you need is a DBRL library card.
If you haven’t yet tried TumbleBooks, you might want to spend a few minutes exploring this excellent resource. There is a link to our TumbleBook collection on the left-hand menu of our Kid’s Blog – you’re already halfway there! Continue reading “TumbleBooks – New and Improved!”
The first Saturday in February may be my new favorite holiday — National Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day. The day was founded in the 1960s by a mom who wanted to give her kiddos something to look forward to during the cold, dreary, nasty days of winter. Legend has it (at least according to Wikipedia) that Florence Rappaport and her six children were hit with a massive blizzard which buried their town of Rochester, New York under several feet of snow. To brighten their day, Mrs. Rappaport decided to serve the children ice cream for breakfast, and so the tradition was born! As the children grew older, they traveled the world and kept up the yearly tradition of eating ice cream for breakfast. Continue reading “Happy National Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day”
The children across Missouri have spoken, and the winner of the 2015 Missouri Building Block Award goes to “Naked!,” written by Michael Ian Black and illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.
Over 20,000 preschoolers and kindergartners participated, choosing “Naked!” as their favorite. “Naked” had almost twice as many votes as the second place finisher “Digger Dog.” Continue reading “Winner of the 2015 Missouri Building Block Award – Naked!”
Many children have anxieties about going to bed, from fearing monsters in the closet to worrying about witches in the hallway. There’s a variety of ways to help children work through these fears (as many ways as there are children, I suspect). One idea that I’ve read about is “Monster Away Spray.” This is a magical potion that you can mix up at home to repel monsters (or other scary things). Below is a basic recipe for this potion. Continue reading “Spray the Monsters Away!”
In honor of Valentine’s Day (February 14) and Random Acts of Kindness Week (February 14-20), we thought it would be fun to create a list of some love and kindness themed books that the library offers for young readers. It is never too early to teach and share the value of love and kindness.
One of my favorite things to do each year is create Valentine’s Day cards with friends and hand them out at local nursing homes and hospitals. Just a simple way to spread joy. (This is double the fun if you have kids who can deliver cards with you.) Below are some of my top pick books to encourage kindness in young readers. Click on the book title to check library availability. Happy reading!
Start Early Books: