I absolutely adore this time of year for three reasons: I get to pull my t-shirts and shorts out of storage, plants and flowers are blooming and flourishing and I get to ride my magnificent bike again! Bicycling is my favorite athletic activity, and I love the feeling of the wind blowing through my hair as I cruise down the MKT Trail on my way to the Columbia Public Library.
Does your family enjoy bicycling too? There are lots of library materials to stock up on if you’re a bike enthusiast. For our younger patrons, “Duck on a Bike” by David Shannon is a great silly read to get you in a biking mood. If you want to learn more about bikes and bicycling, DBRL also has non-fiction materials on the subject.
Want to have even more cycling fun? Next month, the Columbia Parks and Recreation will be hosting a Bike Safety Rodeo! On Saturday, May 20 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. kids and teens (ages 3-18) are invited to the Lange Middle School parking lot to try out a 9-step skills course. You’ll learn bicycle safety rules and even get your bike registered. They’re giving out helmets too!
One of the best ways for children to learn is though play and exploration, using as many senses as possible. When children are able to manipulate items and see the results of their actions, their understanding is greater, and their ability to fully grasp a concept is better.
Play is a wonderful way to introduce abstract concepts such as light and shadows. Below is a drawing activity that allows children to explore how shadows are created. All you will need are markers, paper and a few favorite toys. This activity fun to do outside but can be done inside using a light source such as a lamp.
- Find a flat place to lay out some paper.
- Place toys at the edge of the paper, with their shadow falling onto the paper.
- Trace the shadows with markers.
- After you have finished tracing the shadows, pick up the paper and look at the shapes you’ve created. If you would like, you can stop here, color in your shapes and talk about light and shadows. A more advanced option is to label the shadows with the time, and repeat these steps later. You can then observe how the shadows have changed as the sun moved. (If you are doing this activity inside, shift the lamp a tiny bit.)
Continue reading “Shadow Drawing”
With technology constantly evolving, the juggling act of keeping up with the changes and helping your child navigate though them can be a challenge. To help you with this, the library has a whole page dedicated to internet safety. Each of these websites provide tips and resources to help manage your child’s online activity.
For younger kids, “Chicken Clicking” by Jeanne Willis is a great book to introduce the topic of internet safety. Considered the “Little Red Riding Hood for the iPad generation,” “Chicken Clicking” is about a chick that finds her way onto the farmer’s computer and discovers that the online world isn’t as safe as she thought it was. Read the book together, and then discuss with your child how handle an interaction if a stranger tries to communicate with them online.
Want to check out more items about internet safety? Click here for a list of books and DVDs that gives helpful tips and information!
Are 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”
Read to Me: A Child to Mommy
by Jane Yolen
“Read to me riddles and read to me rhymes,
Read to me stories of magical times.
Read to me tales about castles and kings.
Read to me stories of fabulous things.
Read to me pirates and read to me knights.
Read to me dragons and dragonback fights.
Read to me spaceships and cowboys and then
When you are finished–please read them again.”
April is National Poetry Month! It’s a wonderful time to read some great poetry (like the poem above in Jane Yolen’s “Wee Rhymes: Baby’s First Poetry Book“). It’s also a fantastic time to challenge kids to practice writing their own poetry.
The Callaway County Public Library and the Auxvasse Creative Arts Program invite Callaway County kids and teens ages 5-18 to submit an original poem for the Callaway Youth Poetry Contest.
This year’s theme is “America the Beautiful.” Write a poem that celebrates the natural beauty of the United States. It could be about summertime, travel to American destinations, weekend road trips in Missouri or something you see in your back yard.
For more information and contest guidelines, click here. Happy writing!
“The Little Prince,” is children’s chapter book full appeal for children and adults alike, and it also happens to be my favorite book of all time! It was originally written in French in 1943 by WWII pilot Antione de Saint-Exupéry. It’s revered as a classic and is the most translated French work, now in more than 250 languages and dialects.
The story revolves around a pilot who crash-lands in the middle of the desert only to mysteriously meet a strange little boy, a little prince. The boy tells the pilot about his journey getting to the desert; he explains why he left his home on a tiny asteroid, the planets he’s visited, the people he’s met along the way and the lessons he’s learned.
The little prince and the many other characters that inhabit the world are bursting with charm. There’s a king who thinks he rules the universe but has no subjects, a man who believes he is the richest and most handsome man on his planet and many other quirky characters.
Continue reading “Books We Love: The Little Prince”
The Unbound Book Festival is returning for its second year to the Stephens College campus on Saturday, April 22! This free, all-day event will feature nationally renowned authors discussing, signing and reading from their books. Enjoy programs and panel discussions about fiction, nonfiction and poetry.
There will be authors for youth, too, funded in part by the Friends of the Columbia Public Library. A wide range of children’s and young adult writers and illustrators will be sharing their work, including Barney Saltzberg, Jan Spivey Gilchrist, Zac Brewer, Brian Katcher and Ibtisam Barakat.
Events for Children and Teens
Warehouse Theater Stephens College
Bestselling children’s author and performer Barney Saltzberg kicks things off with music and stories for little ones. Continue reading “Unbound Book Festival: Children’s & Teen Authors”
Well, I did it! I started eating healthy–no more junk food for me. Changing my diet has been the hardest thing I have done in a long time. (I love my carbs!) As difficult as it is, I know it’s even more difficult to encourage your entire family to eat healthy. Especially if your kids are picky eaters.
Now that spring has arrived and fresh foods are becoming more available at the grocery stores and farmers markets, I thought I would sneak you some ideas for healthy snacks that are silly, simple and fun. I hope these quirky cuisines inspire your little ones to try some new healthy foods.
These cute little guys only require three ingredients: grapes, skewers and cute candy eyes (you can use frosting eyes if you choose). Continue reading “Food, Glorious Food!!!”
Spring is officially here! It’s time to put your winter mittens in storage and replace them with your gardening gloves. As you start stretching your green thumb after the winter season, take some time for you and your child to learn more about plants and gardening. Check out some library books on the subject, plant something together and sing the rhyme below.
Watch It Bloom
Here is a green leaf (hold out one palm)
And here is a green leaf (hold out other palm)
That, you see, makes two (hold up two fingers)
Here is a bud (cup hand together)
That makes it a flower (slowly open hands)
Watch it bloom for you (slowly open hands)
~Perry Public Library
Friends are such a gift! The best ones not only allow us to be ourselves but also lift us up when we are down. To quote former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, “Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends leave footprints in your heart.”
Learning to make friends is an important part of early childhood. Take it from Piglet in “Winnie the Pooh,” “It’s so much more friendly with two.” But for many children, stepping out of their comfort zones, interacting with others and forming these important relationships can be challenging.
Parents and guardians can help pave the way by providing ample social opportunities, such as play dates, which allow children to make friends at their own pace. Equally important is reading with your child about making and keeping friends. Here are just a few of the many friendship books we offer at DBRL to help you get started: