Think back to a time when you felt “different.” Perhaps you were in a situation where you didn’t look like or act like everyone else. Maybe you couldn’t keep up with an activity due to physical limitations or lack of skill sets. Regardless of why you felt the way you did, you remember these times because they evoked strong emotions. Brene Brown, American author and research professor at the University of Houston, provides some insight into this universal need to fit in. “A deep sense of love and belonging is an irreducible need of all people. We are biologically, cognitively, physically and spiritually wired to love, to be loved and to belong. When those needs are not met, we don’t function as we were meant to. We break. We fall apart. We numb. We ache. We hurt others. We get sick.”
With the need to belong such an important aspect of the human condition, authors of children’s books in particular frequently address the issue of being different. For example, in the book “Carrot and Pea” by Morag Hood, Lee and his friends all look alike and enjoy the same games. That is, except for Colin. But Colin, who is a carrot, doesn’t feel left out because he is appreciated for his uniqueness. In her book “You Are (Not) Small,” author Anna Kang delivers a powerful message about being different using a humorous dialogue between two creatures who attempt to label one another either “big” or “small.” It’s only when an outsider shows up that the two creatures realize that how they perceive each other, and others around them, is all relative.
DBRL offers a variety of books to choose from on the subject of being different. Here are just a few.
School has started, pencils have been sharpened, books have been cracked and tutors from the University of Missouri-Columbia’s A Way With Words & Numbers are back!
Tutoring is available for students in grades K-7 for FREE. During a tutoring session, your child will work with a MU undergraduate student in the children’s area for approximately 30 minutes. (Parents must remain in the building.) You may sign up for a tutoring time slot when you arrive at the library, though advance registration is also available online.
Tutoring hours are Monday-Thursday from 3:30-6:30 p.m at the Columbia Public Library. Tutoring is available during most of MU’s fall and spring semesters (September through early December; late January through early May). Call the library at (573) 443-3161 for more information.
Calling all lovers of history and geography! One of the coolest parts of owning a library card is acquiring access to a variety of online resources free of cost. One of my favorites is CultureGrams. This program is designed to allow kids to explore and learn about places and cultures around the globe.
When entering the CultureGrams website, you are presented with four different choices: World Edition, Kids Edition, States Edition, and (Canadian) Provinces Edition. All choices give a plethora of information including history, geography and fun tidbits about each location. Want to know what it is like for kids in different countries or how to cook a dish from Peru? CultureGrams Kids has information on that and much more.
Did you know September 15 through October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month? This celebration has been around since 1968 in honor of the great influence and contributions Hispanic Americans have made in the United States.
To celebrate, you can come to DBRL’s Spanish Story Time/Hora de cuentos en familia! Learn new words while listening to stories and songs in Spanish. This program is for native and non-native speakers alike and is for ages 2-5 with an adult. Registration is not required.
Our libraries also have books in Spanish that include board books, picture books and chapter books. A few of my favorites include “Fantasmas” by Raina Telgemeier, “Con cariño, Amalia” by Alma Flor Ada and “La granja de los siete establos” by Roberto Aliaga. You can check out the rest of our Spanish collection here.
Do your kiddos love moving and grooving? If so, try out these super simple DIY rainbow dancing wrist bands! We use these all the time at the library, and they’re an awesome and colorful way encourage dancing and self expression with your little ones.
What you need:
Shower curtain rings or adult-sized hair elastics
Colorful ribbon, cut into 12″–18″ lengths (You’ll want at least three, though having a rainbow of colors is pretty cool.)
Did you know the library offers tablets for children, called Launchpads? These educational, pre-loaded tablets playfully cover topics such as reading, science, math and much more. Each tablet has 10 learning apps chosen around a theme and checks out for one week.
Already a fan of the Launchpads? Then you will be excited to learn we have rolled out several new tablet themes for each age range! Check out the full lineup below.
Does your little one love to read before bed? Reading before bed can be a fun, healthy ritual to help you and your little ones wind down at night. However, as babies grow to toddlers, and toddlers to preschoolers, the evening stack of bedtime stories can begin to look like a small skyscraper on the nightstand. Does this sound familiar? If so, your child might be ready for chapter books.
But wait, aren’t chapter books for older kids? Well, technically, they’re for older kids who read independently, but that doesn’t mean that your three, four or five year old wouldn’t enjoy listening to you read them aloud. As a general rule, a child’s listening level is about three years above their independent reading level. Reading chapter books to children before bed helps build a rich vocabulary and strengthens focus–important skills for life!
Here are some tips to keep in mind when beginning the practice of reading multi-evening stories:
If you’ve read my other blogs, you know that I love to listen to audiobooks! I listen to kid’s books, teen books and every once in a while I get to listen to grownup books, too. But today I’m going to tell you about some podcasts that I’m obsessed with, because when I’m not listening to audiobooks, I enjoy listening to a good podcast. I wish I had more ears so I could listen to ALL THE THINGS!
There are so many kid’s podcasts, it can be hard to know where to start. Below, I have listed a few of my faves, but you can also check out this article from sayyes.com or this list of children’s book podcasts from readbrightly.com. All of the podcasts listed are about 30 minutes in length, so they’re perfect when doing little chores around the house or as entertainment for a long car ride. Happy listening!Continue reading “Podcasts We Love”
Everyone loves a good joke! So, it’s no surprise we have a full day devoted to telling them. According to the National Day Calendar™, August 16 is National Tell a Joke Day.
Participating in National Tell a Joke Day is easy cheesy. Just do at least one of the following: tell a joke, listen to a joke, laugh, celebrate, have fun and enjoy! You can also take it a step further and post jokes on Twitter by using the hashtag #NationalTellAJokeDay.
Then, after August 16, go ahead and keep “joking around.” Studies have shown that laughter is important to our mental health. According to a report in Psychology Today, “Humor and laughter are related to health and can release physical and emotional tension, improve immune functioning, stimulate circulation, elevate mood, enhance cognitive functioning and, not surprisingly, increase friendliness.” Continue reading “LOL! It’s National Tell a Joke Day!”
One of the great things about working at the library is that I get to find hidden gems in our collections of books. There are fun books all around the library, but I particularly love picture books for young readers that are in chapter book format.
When books arrive at the library, the librarians called catalogers determine what section to put them in. Picking a section is tricky because there are books written for every age range and reading level. Some books may fit into many categories, which is why there are chapter books in the picture book section. These books are great for young readers who want to read “big kid” books but may not be ready for an advanced chapter book. The tricky bit about these books is that they are not searchable by type. So to make your search more accessible, we have created a book list!
“The Infamous Ratsos” by Kara Lareau is my favorite from this list. Louie and Ralphie Ratso try to be bad just like their dad, but every time they try to do mischievous deeds, they are helpful. Louis and Ralphi start to wonder, is being helpful a bad thing? Find the Infamous Ratsos at your branch today!