Recycled Rainstick Craft

Posted on Tuesday, October 13, 2015 by Katie

The library is celebrating Latino history with a variety of programs, book displays, special story times and more! One way you can continue this fun at home is to create a rainstick based on those used by the Aztecs. The Aztecs believed that they could summon rain storms by using rainsticks. Originally they were made from pieces of hollow cacti that were dried in the sun. The spines from the cacti were driven into the cacti like nails, and pebbles or other small objects were placed inside. To complete the rainstick, the ends were sealed. When the rain stick was tipped, the pebbles would fall through the tube and bump against the spines. This would create a sound like faRainstick_01lling rain.

Now, I’m not going to ask you to go find a cactus for this project. There is a simple, child-friendly rainstick you and your kids can create.

Continue reading “Recycled Rainstick Craft”

2015 Missouri Building Blocks: Buddy and the Bunnies in Don’t Play With Your Food

Posted on Thursday, October 8, 2015 by Katie

Book cover for Buddy and the Bunnies in: Don’t Play With Your FoodOne of this year’s Missouri Building Block nominees is “Buddy and the Bunnies in: Don’t Play With Your Food” by Bob Shea. This is a fun story about a monster named Buddy who really wants to eat the bunnies living nearby.  However, the bunnies have other ideas. They would rather bake cupcakes, go swimming and visit the carnival. What’s a monster like Buddy to do when his “snack” is so much fun to be with?

Here are some ways you can keep the fun going:

Write or act out your own story.

  • What would you do if a monster was trying to eat you?
  • How would you make friends with a monster?
  • What are some fun activities you and your friends have done over the summer?

Create your own monster or bunny – either on paper or as a costume. Continue reading “2015 Missouri Building Blocks: Buddy and the Bunnies in Don’t Play With Your Food”

Chilling Children’s Books

Posted on Tuesday, October 6, 2015 by Kristy

October is finally here, which  means that it’s the perfect time to curl up with some candy corn in one hand and a Halloween-themed book in the other. We have recently acquired several new scary and not-so-scary eBooks for children, and we invite you to browse through these spooky stories.

Here are some spook-tacular new Halloween-themed eBooks you can access through Overdrive.

Cover image for Boo!

Boo” by Leslie Patricelli Continue reading “Chilling Children’s Books”

2015 Missouri Building Blocks: Naked

Posted on Thursday, October 1, 2015 by Jerilyn

The Missouri Building Block Award is presented annually to the author and illustrator of the picture book voted the best by preschool and kindergarten children. Over the next 10 weeks we will be featuring ways to enjoy this year’s nominees. Once you read at least five Building Block nominees, then vote for your favorite! The first book we will feature is “Naked” by Michael Ian Black.

The main character in “Naked,” a little boy bursting with enthusiasm, loves the time between bath time and bedtime. Our hero comes out of the bath full of energy, imagining what it would be like to go naked all the time (the illustrator is very discreet with her pictures). He then adds a cape, which is even better!  He takes several breaks to eat his bedtime snack of cookies and then realizes he is cold.  On go the dragon pajamas and he is finally “exhausted” and ready for bed.

Reading “Naked” could lead to all kinds of great discussions and activities.

Continue reading “2015 Missouri Building Blocks: Naked”

Fall for Some Great Rhymes

Posted on Tuesday, September 29, 2015 by Kristy

I absolutely love this time of year when we dust off our hoodies and the enchanting smell Pumpkins in a fieldof pumpkin spiced lattes permeates the air. Fall is a beautiful time of change, and one thing we should consider changing up is our repertoire of rhymes. Rhyming is essential to early literacy skills, and it’s fun to practice new rhymes with children as one season transitions into another. Here are some delightful fall rhymes to get you started. Continue reading “Fall for Some Great Rhymes”

Scheduling Your Story Times

Posted on Friday, September 11, 2015 by Johnathan

Kids enjoying story timeMany patrons small and tall enjoy our story times. We have story times for different age groups, and we try to keep our story times on a fairly regular schedule (only occasionally interrupting for a special program such as a visiting performer or annual Summer Reading-themed programs or wrap-up). All three branches have their own story times divided by age.

Columbia just made some small changes to its regular line-up to give flexibility to parents with babies. In addition to having Baby, Oh, Baby on Mondays at 10:30, parents can now bring their little ones to Thursday Baby, Oh, Baby at 9:30.  See below for the regular schedule, and click this flyer to see all the specific Columbia story times for September through November. Continue reading “Scheduling Your Story Times”

New Children’s Computers!

Posted on Friday, September 4, 2015 by Johnathan

New ComputersWe have new computers in the Children’s department! AWE’s Early Literacy Station computers feature over 4,000 localized learning activities. The fun, interactive content spans curricular areas of math, science, social studies and geography, reading, art, music, writing, computer skills and reference. These computers use a brightly colored keyboard, a mouse and a touch screen for a variety of computer literacy techniques. Below are just a few of the MANY games available!

Computer games for younger kids:

  • Sesame Street Learn, Play & Grow – Match colors and shapes, learn letters, practice counting, learn about different jobs in a neighborhood and make drawings with paint and crayons.
  • Giggles Kids Nursery Rhymes – Watch the lamb follow Mary, topple Humpty Dumpty, Race up a hill and tumble down with Jack and Jill, send twinkling stars shooting across the night sky and more!
  • Getting Ready for Kindergarten – Learn school-essential physical, social and academic skills. Kids will use interactive games to show how to get dressed, sort and count blocks, learn left and right, tie shoes and more.

Continue reading “New Children’s Computers!”

Our Super Summer!

Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2015 by Johnathan

Spider-man librarian
Your friendly Spider-man Librarian

Thanks to all our patrons for making this summer such a memorable one. “Every Hero Has a Story” has been one of our more popular Summer Reading themes, and kids, parents and employees showed their enthusiasm at all our branches.

Below are some favorite memories from this summer. What are your favorite moments? Continue reading “Our Super Summer!”

Tackling Tough Topics

Posted on Tuesday, August 25, 2015 by Stephanie

Kids are curious. They ask a million questions. And as far as I know, there’s no definitive book of answers for how to talk to your little ones about serious issues, such as the Holocaust or slavery or hurricanes or death. It’s difficult to navigate how much to tell them when you want to be honest with them but not scare or overwhelm them with things they aren’t emotionally ready to handle. When you think you are ready to tackle these issues, there are some great books that can help.

Book cover for The Whispering TownThe Whispering Town” by Jennifer Elvgren is a beautifully written, simple book that tells the story of a family who hid Jewish families in Nazi-occupied Denmark and helped them get to Sweden safely. It is based on a true story and tells the clever and unusual plan that little Anett devises to get her “new friends” to safety. A sweet story, with just enough details for curious little ones. Continue reading “Tackling Tough Topics”

Books We Love: Super Red Riding Hood

Posted on Tuesday, August 11, 2015 by Katie

Book cover for Super Read Riding HoodIf you have read any of my other blog posts, you might have noticed my love of fairy tales. Classics, twisted, retold… they are all wonderful in my eyes. When I saw “Super Red Riding Hood,” by Claudia Dvaila, I knew I had to read it. Not only does it tell a new version of Red Riding Hood, but its superhero theme is perfect for this year’s Summer Reading program.

I’m glad I took the time to check out this story – it means I can share this delightful story about a young girl, Ruby, who is actually Super Red Riding Hood! When Ruby puts on her cape and red boots, she becomes a superhero capable of amazing things. Her super traits help her successfully complete her mission into the woods and even make a new friend. Continue reading “Books We Love: Super Red Riding Hood”