Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas

I hope all of you have a wonderful Christmas. I'm sure there will many new books under trees across Marlborough. I hear Santa is a big fan of reading.

The library will be closed Friday 12/24, Saturday 12/25 and Sunday 12/26. We'll open up with regular hours on Monday 12/27.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Quiet Storytime

We actually managed to have a (mostly) quiet storytime this morning at RML. Featuring the meditative art of coloring with crayons, quiet music, some yoga breathing, along with the some quiet books made for a lovely 1/2 hour respite in my day. We read "The Story of Ferdinand", by Munro Leaf, a classic if there every was one and one of my favorite books to read aloud. Martin Waddell's lovely (and often overlooked) "Hi, Harry" subtitled "The moving story of how one slow tortoise slowly made a friend" is a charmer. I also shared for the first time in a storytime "The Stars Will Still Shine", by the prolific genius Cynthia Rylant, with illustrations by Tiphanie Beeke; simple rhyming text with a message that is reassuring and uplifting.

Have a wonderful and peaceful Christmas.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Busy Week Thank-Yous

We have had quite a week of Holiday Happenings at the Richmond Memorial Library this week. I hope everyone had a chance to join in the fun! We kicked off the week with our family ornament making night, had a few drop-in storytimes, danced our way through the middle of the week with the Nutcracker program and ended it on Friday with games, stories, and a craft with Ms. Eileen, me, and 3o of our storytime alumni. (I wish I could name you all, but just know that you are awesome!)

Many thanks to Friends of the Library whose generous fund-raising helped us sponsor the wonderful Holiday Happenings. Also thank you to Maria Grove who shared the Nutcracker with a crowd of tutu clad children. Thank you to our kind and generous page-extraordinaire Nancy M. who helped Eileen and I provide a safe, fun Not-Too-Old-For-Storytime event, as well as to the mothers who helped corral children at the school and accompany us to the library.

And, as always, thanks to our fearless leader Nancy Wood who enthusiastically and cheerfully signs off on the many wacky ideas that Ms. Eileen and I present her. I hope our patrons know that few library directors would be so supportive of the out-of-the-box ideas that Mrs. Wood is. Somehow she find the money in our tight budget to fund programs that bring smiles to the faces of our patrons, and to Ms. Eileen and me as well. If you or your family enjoyed any of our Holiday Happenings be sure to thank Library Director Nancy Wood.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ornament-Making Instructions

A good time was had by all last night as Ms. Eileen, and I, and 37 of our closest friends made ornaments from candy and other stuff. It was chaotic, messy, sugary, and fun. A few folks asked for information on making the ornaments so here you go:

Follow this link for directions on making the candy train.

The gumdrop ball was made without glue or toothpicks to stick the gumdrops in the styrofoam ball. I'll be curious to hear if the gumdrops stay on. Let us know.

For the cinnamon ornaments: For those who made them last night, you can either let them air dry for a few days, then add the ribbon, decorate with acrylic or puffy paint if you wish, and hang on your tree. Or you can put them in a 200 degree oven for an 1 to 1 1/2 to quicken the dry time. The recipe I prefer is 1/3 cup applesauce to 1/2 cinnamon. Last night the bowls we used were way too small. If making them again, try using a larger bowl so that you can stir the mixture, which initially appears too dry, until it forms a ball.

Finally, for the candy cane ornaments. Last night we had some hits and misses and here's what we learned. Smashing the candy in the freezer ziploc bags seemed to work well. It may be better to use one kind of candy per ornament (only candy canes, only Jolly Ranchers) because the different melt temperatures for each candy complicated things a bit. It's best to use ornaments that have fewer sharp turns and twists. A simple snowman or heart or star seemed to work best. Fill the ornament about a 1/3 of the way. Bake the ornaments at 325 for about 5 minutes until just melted. Letting them cook longer results in a more melted, thinner ornament because some of the filling spills out of the cookie cutter. Finally, add a hole in the ornament after it's cooled for a few minutes. Removing the ornament from the cookie cutter takes finesse. There will be casualties! Also, I don't think we needed to use quite so much Pam. I noticed that a lot of ornaments had a layer of oil on them afterward. You can dab the oil off I suppose. If you want to keep the ornaments beyond this Christmas, spray them with a clear shellac or polyurethane spray.

I hope you all had fun and thank you so much to all the parents who helped Eileen and I with instructions to others and cleaning up. Let us know if you try to make any of these ornaments and home and share with us the results.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Family Ornament Making

I hope you are signed up to join Ms. Eileen and I for an evening of fun, making Christmas ornaments. We will be making 4 different types of ornaments at different levels of difficulty so bring the entire family. The ornaments we'll be making include "stained-glass" ornaments from crushed candy canes, cinnamon ornaments, a candy train, and gumdrop ornaments. We'll play some Christmas music to get us all in the mood. There is still room so go ahead and sign up. We'll be meeting at the Senior Center at 6:00 p.m. Look forward to seeing you there.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Fridays with Ms. Eileen

I have been terribly neglectful of updating everyone on the wonderful Friday storytimes with Ms. Eileen. Her Friday groups are so full of fun and energy and they always create wonderful projects. This week focused on SNOW (do you get the feeling Ms. Eileen and I are eagerly awaiting winter?!) and the bulletin board in the children's area shows a snowy scene with snowmen from last year's Friday storytime groups as well as frosted trees from today's groups. The trees are a bit of construction paper origami that are pretty cool. (Get it? Cool? Frosted? Snow-covered? Hehehe) Books focused on snow and snow play including "Sally's Snow Adventure" by Stephen Huneck.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

More Holiday Book Lists

Good news, the Connecticut Library Consortium just published its annual holiday booklists.

Link HERE for the 0-3 recommendations
Link HERE for the 3-8
Link HERE for 8-12
Link HERE for teens

Some highlights for me in the first age group include "Little Owl Lost" by Chris Houghton, a book I am dying to get my hands on, and "Dog Loves Books" by Louise Yates which just makes me so happy to look at. I love the look of Dog as he lays inside his book. Pure bliss.

The 3-8 category features two Elephant and Piggy books by Mo Willems (I'm a big fan), plus the over-the-top "I'm the Best" by Lucy Cousins, as well as "Life-Size Aquarium", by Teruyuki Komiya, a book you just have to see (and a new addition to our collection).

For older readers there's "Guys Read: Funny Business" edited by Jon Scieszka whom I've mentioned here on this blog, a collection of short funny stories that will get your reluctant reader wanting more. Plus "The Mysterious Howling", by Mary-Rose Wood, creepy good fun with a Jane Eyre type governess and children raised by wolves, for your adventurous reader.

Unfortunately, I'm only familiar with one of the books in the teen category (Will Grayson, Will Grayson, by John Green and David Levithan: an excellent read), but I'm sure all are unique and superior.

Have fun choosing and feel free to ask Ms. Eileen and me for some of our personal recommendations for your children.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Storytime II, Week 5: First Snow

This Week's Books:
Duck Skates, by Lynne Berry, ill. by Hiroe Nakata
Owl Moon, by Nicholas Brunelle
Copy Me, Copycub, by Richard Edwards, ill. by Susan Winter
Snow, by Uri Shulevitz
Oh! by Kevin Henkes, ill. by Laura Dronzek
I Love Snow, by Hans Wilhelm
Snow, by Manya Stojic
First Snow, by Bernette Ford, ill, by Sebastien Braun
First Snow in the Woods, by Carl R. Sams and Jean Stoick

This Week's Music
Suzy Snowflake, by Rosemary Clooney
Aspenglow, by John Denver
Marshmallow World, by Johnny Mathis

This Week's Action Rhymes:
1 Snowflakes are falling on the ground
On our houses, on our town
On my nose, and in my hair
Snowflakes are falling everywhere

2 Let's all make a snowman
Make him big and tall
Now see if you can hit him
With a big snowball!

This Week's Art/Craft: A glittery snowflake


I hope your Thanksgiving holiday was lovely. I was sick for a few days (sorry, Monday storytime-ers, I'll see you this week!) and then away for a few more days for baking, eating, shopping, and game-playing fun with my loud chaotic family. But, I'm back at RML and gearing up for a wonderful month of Holiday Happenings.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Storytime II, Week 4: Owls

I love owls and have to include an owl-themed storytime once a year. It also gives me a chance to read my daughter's favorite childhood book "Owl Babies".

This Week's Books:
Olivia Owl, by Maurice Pledger
I'm Not Cute, by Jonathan Allen
Night Creatures, by Wade Cooper
Owliver, by Robert Kraus, ill. by Aruego and Dewey
In My Tree, by Sara Gillingham and Lorena Siminovich
The Barn Owls, by Tony Johnston, ill, by Deborah Ray
Owl Babies, by Martin Waddell, ill. by Patrick Benson

This Week's Music:
Owl Song, by The Bossy Frog Band
How an Owl Says Howdidoo, by Jim Stolz
Return to Pooh Corner, by Kenny Loggins

This Week's Action Rhymes:
There's a wide eyed owl with a pointed nose,
Two pointed ears, and claws for toes.
He lives in a tree and when he looks at you
He flaps his wings and he says "Whoo Whoo!"

Whooo, said the owl in the dark old tree
Whee, said the wind with a howl, wheeee
Whoo-hoo, whee-whee
They didn't scare each other,
But they sure scared ME!

This Week's Art: A Black Paper and Chalk Owl!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Books for Holiday Giving

With Hanukkah just around the corner (the first week of December) and Christmas coming quickly after that, websites and publications are beginning their lists of children's' books for gift-giving.

The New York Times Book Review printed their list of the Best Illustrated Children's Books of 2010 (clickable link) which include some of my personal favorites such as the charming "Henry in Love" by Peter McCarty, as well as some books that I am now excited to see, including "A Sick Day for Amos McGee" by Philip and Erin Stead.

The website Imagination Soup ("playful learning for inquisitive kids") published their Holiday Gift Guide to the Best Books for Kids which includes some non-book items such as the Little Librarian kit if your little one wishes to emulate Ms. Eileen or me!

The ALSC (Association of Library Service for Children) division of the American Library Association has issued it's 2010 Notable Children's Books list as well. It is an exhaustive list including books recommended for children up to age 14. You'll be sure to find some great suggestions there.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Holiday Happenings!!!

It's that time of year again, time for special Holiday programs for families at the RML.

- "A Little House Christmas". Wednesday December 8 at 4:00. Magic Storybook presents a visit to the Log Cabin in the Big Woods to celebrate the Christmas Holiday the way Laura and her family did so many years ago. String popcorn, sing holiday songs, dance and play games that aren’t electronic Decorative scenery, props and costumes add to this nostalgic and festive holiday experience. This program is for families with children ages 5 and up. Registration required.

- Family Ornament Making and Baking. Monday December 13 at 6:00. Join us at the Marlborough Senior Center for making and baking ornaments at all levels of difficulty. For Families. Registration required.

- Drop-in Storytimes for ages 2-5, every Monday at 1:00 from 11/15-12/13.

- Book Tots for babies aged 9-24 months every Wednesday in December at 10:30 a.m. Register OR drop-in.

- Quiet Storytime for ages 2-4, Monday, 12/20 at 10:30. Low lights, quiet music and calm stories for a breath of relaxation during the busy Christmas week.

- Not-Too-Old-For-Storytime: Holiday Edition: For children in grades K,1,2. We'll meet at Elmer Thienes school at the end of the day and walk to the library for an afternoon snack, craft, stories, games, and music. Friday, December 17 3:15-4:30. Registration is required. (Sign-up soon, spots are limited!)

Plus there are several adult programs going on this December including a job-hunt program and Home-made for the Holidays. Check out the library website for more information.

Happy Holidays from your friends at the Richmond Memorial Library!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Storytime II, Week 3: Hide-and-Seek

Week 3 and our theme this week is Hide-and-Seek. Actually, it's more complicated than that. While Monday storytime for 2s will have this theme, because the library is closed this Thursday for Veteran's Day, my Thursday storytime groups will have this theme on December 2. However, I'll also be doing Ms. Eileen's Friday storytimes (she's off to Disney, LUCKY!) and we'll do a 4/5 year-old version of this theme.

This Week's Books:
Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin, by Tad Hills
I Will Surprise My Friend, by Mo Willems
Where's Tumpty? by Polly Dunbar
The Hidden Alphabet, by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Missing Molly, by Lisa Jahn-Clough
Where is the Green Sheep? By Mem Fox, ill, by Judy Horacek
Daisy's Hide-and-Seek, by Jane Simmons
Bear in a Square, by Stella Blackstone, ill. by Debbie Harter
Where is Ben? by Marisabina Russo
Where's Spot, by Eric Hill

This Week's Music:
Where Have You Been? by Burl Ives
Elephant Hide-and-Seek, by Steve Songs
Can You Find It? by They Might Be Giants

This Week's Action Rhymes:
One fine Thanksgiving Day
Two little turkeys came out to play
One turkey says, "We'll play hide-and-seek,
I'll go hide, and you don't peek"

Will he hide high, will he hide low
Will he hide far, I don't know
Will he hide left, will he hide right
Or will he hide back out of sight?

The other little turkey then looks around
But his turkey friend can't be found
Did he hide high, did he hide low
Did he hide far, I don't know
Did he hide left, did he hide right
Or did he hide back out of sight

"Aha, I found you! Come on out!"
"Gooble Gooble Gooble!" both turkeys shout.

Also, Where is Thumbkin

This Week's Craft: A hide-and-seek turkey

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Guys Read

A patron came in this morning looking for holiday book suggestions for 4 grandsons ages 8-13. While helping her I was reminded of an excellent website designed specifically for finding books for boys. The website Guys Read (clickable link) is the brainchild of Jon Scieszka, author of dozens of picture books including "The Stinky Cheese Man", as well as plenty of juvenile fiction such as the Time Warp Trio series.

The mission of Guys Read is "to motivate boys to read by connecting them with materials they will want to read, in ways they like to read". What a great mission! And what a great website. Books are reviewed, discussed, and listed in genres such a funny books, books about outer space, books about building stuff...and more.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Session II, Week 2: Cats

Everybody wants to be a cat...or so they say. It's this week's theme:

This Week's Books:
Bad Kitty, by Nick Bruel
A Kitten Tale, by Eric Rohmann
Hondo and Fabian, by Peter McCarty
Kitten's First Full Moon, by Kevin Henkes
Top Cat, by Lois Ehlert
Mama Cat Has Three Kittens, by Denise Fleming
No, No, Jo! by Kate and Jim McMullan
Kate, the Cat, and the Moon, by David Almond, ill. by Stephen Lambert

This Week's Music:
Stray Cat Strut, by The Stray Cats
The Cat Came Back, by Laurie Berkner
Everybody Wants to be a Cat, from the movie the Aristocats

This Week's Action Rhymes:
Creeping creeping comes the little cat
But bunny with his long ears hops like that!

I have a teeny tiny cat
Well actually he's really fat
He runs around from here to there
And sometimes jumps into the air
But when he wants to take a nap
He comes and curls up in my lap

This Week's Art: Cat masks

Our Storytime Alums Returned!

Ms. Eileen and I had sooooo much fun on Friday when 30 of our storytime alumni (in grades K,1,2) returned for an afternoon of stories, songs, a craft, games, and a snack with a Halloween theme. We squeezed a lot into the hour and a half we had together, including a walk from the elementary school to the library. The children were remarkably well-behaved, and just plain fun to be with. Thank you to Maria's mother for supplying all 30 kids with popcorn and to my own daughter for helping me make "Dry Bones" (meringue cookies) to share as an after-school snack.

We hope all of your children enjoyed this nostalgic visit and we certainly hope to do it again soon. We'll keep you posted. In the meantime, we look forward to seeing you all at the library.

Happy Halloween Everyone! (Be safe.)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Storytime Session II, Week 1: In the Night

Storytime session II begins this week and our first theme (for 2s and 3/4s) is 'In the Night'.

This Week's Books:
In the Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak
Scaredy Squirrel at Night, by Melanie Watt
Night Lights, by Susan Gal
Night's Nice, by Barbara and Ed Emberley
Mouse at Night, by Nancy Hall, ill. by Buket Erdogan
The House in the Night, by Susan Swanson, ill. by Beth Krommes
One Dark Night, by Lisa Wheeler, ill. by Ivan Bates

This Week's Music:
The Starry Night, by Jessica Harper
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, traditional

This Week's Action Rhymes:
The big yellow moon shines so bright
And glides across the starry night
It shines on me asleep in my bed
And whispers, "Good night you sleepy head"

This Week's Art: Starry night pictures with crayons, glitter and liquid watercolor
Plus: "The Bats in the Night" (to the tune of "Wheels on the Bus") and a flannel board game

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

An Arty New Book

"Art and Max" by David Wiesner has just arrived at the library. This unusual book is geared more towards older children as through its clever story and AMAZING illustrations it brings up an interesting conversation about the nature of art. We all know that kids love to create and what they create doesn't always have to be representational. "Art and Max" celebrates the exuberance and messiness of children's art. As Picasso once famously stated, "It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child".

Sunday, October 17, 2010

New Potty Books

One of the most common requests we get is for picture books that address potty training. While there are the classics, like "Everybody Poops"by Taro Gomi and "Once Upon a Potty" by Alona Frankel, there are several new toilet-themed books that are fun, funny, and actually good books for anytime reading.

"Danny is Done with Diapers" by Rebecca O'Connell and illustrated by Amanda Gulliver, uses the alphabet to show 26 youngsters and their potty training adventures including having accidents and successes. Sweet,appealing and reassuring.

"Potty Animals" by Hope Vestergaard and illustrated by Valeria Petrone, uses charming preschool animal "beasties" to humorously demonstrate toilet manners and hygiene.
The illustrations alone will make you laugh.

"Dinosaur vs. the Potty", by Bob Shea is the silliest of the bunch. If you know Bob Shea ("Dinosaur vs. Bedtime", "Oh Daddy") you know what to expect: bright, bold illustrations with brief expressive text perfect for over-acting to when reading aloud.

Enjoy these books anytime, and be sure to ask if you need any potty-training resources. We have a few DVDs as well as parent books that may be of assistance.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Fridays with Ms. Eileen

Our four and five year-olds finished Session I with a storytime about leaves. They made a beautiful painted fall tree, played autumn games, pretended to be bears going into their dens for winter, and read lovely fall books such as "Leaves" by David Ezra Stein and "Every Autumn Comes the Bear" by Jim Arnosky.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Storytime Week 5: Shoes

The last class of Session One takes place on Thursday 10/14 and on Monday 10/18. Sign-up at your last class for Session Two which begins the week of October 25.

This week's theme is Shoes!

This Week's Books:
Which Shoes Would You Choose? by Betsy Rosenthal, ill. by Nancy Coate
Hello Shoes, by Joan Blos, ill. by Ann Boyajian
My Best Shoes, by Marilee Robin Burton, ill, by James Ransome
1, 2, Buckle My Shoe, by Anna Grossnickle Hines
New Shoes, Red Shoes, by Susan Rollings
Baby Shoes, by Dashka Slater, ill, by Hiroe Nakata
Shoes, The Sound of SH, by Peg Ballard
Shoes, by Elizabeth Winthrop, ill, by William Joyce
Blueberry Shoe, by Anna Dixon and Evon Zerbetz

This Week's Music:
These Boots Are Made For Walking, by The Sugar Beats
Boogie Shoes, by K.C. and the Sunshine Band
Your Shoes, My Shoes, by Tom Paxton

This Week's Action Rhymes:
Point to your shoe and hop, hop, hop
When you're tired, stop, stop, stop
Turn around and count to ten
Point to you shoe and sit down again

1,2 Buckle my shoe
3,4 Shut the door
5,6 Pick up sticks
7,.9 Open the gate
9,10 My big fat hen!

This Week's Craft: Sponge Painted Shoe

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Reading Rockets Book Lists

A patron who also happens to be a mother of three and a speech/language professional steered me to a wonderful site for literacy. The site, is an initiative by several PBS stations with a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Education. Among the many wonderful resources for parents, teachers, and librarians, are numerous book lists accessible by clicking HERE. It's quite a treasure trove. Enjoy, and let us know if you discover any books you'd like us to add to our collection.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Friday with Ms. Eileen

"Chicken Soup with Rice", by Maurice Sendak, and other tasty books were served up on Friday at Ms. Eileen's storytimes. The children made their own soup bowls of chicken soup with rice decorated with their birthdays.

And of course, everyone got to listen to Carole King singing her classic version of the story in song form. Click HERE to listen and see a video.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

You're Never Too Old For Storytime

Kids grow up, we get it, however, Ms. Eileen and I miss our old friends. So we've introduced our "Not-Too-Old-For-Storytime Storytime"! We'll have our "pilot" session on Friday October 29th from 3:15-4:15 and if it's well-received we may do it as a regular thing.

Here's how it works. You need to sign-up your child (in grades K-2) at the library and then send a permission slip to the school to allow your child to be charged to our care. We'll meet the children at the school at the end of the day and walk them down to the library. There we'll have an afterschool snack as well as the usual storytime events, geared for older children. You come pick up your child at the library at 4:15. (You can also drop-off your child for this program at 3:15, if you wish.)

Sign-up at the library now. We look forward to seeing all of our old friends and making some new ones, too.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Storytime Week 4: PIZZA!

Seriously, who doesn't love it! This week's storytime theme is PIZZA!

This Week's Books:
Pete's a Pizza, by William Steig
Pizza Kittens, by Charlotte Voake
Little Nino's Pizzeria, by Karen Barbour
The Pizza That We Made, by Joan Holub, ill. by Lynne Cravath
Pizza Pat, by Rita Golden Gelman, ill. by Will Terry
Curious George and the Pizza, by Margret and H.A. Rey
The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza, by Philemon Sturges, ill. by Amy Walrod
Hi Pizza Man! by Virginia Walter, ill. by Ponder Goembel

This Week's Music:
That's Amore, by Dean Martin
The Pizza That Ate Chicago, by Tom Paxton
P-I-Z-Z-A, by Rachel Sumner
The Pizza Dance, by Laughing Pizza

This Week's Action Rhyme
You pound and pull and toss the dough
Pour on sauce and oregano
Grate the cheese, throw it on top
Mushrooms, olives, broccoli, CHOP!
Pepperoni, meatballs, sausage too
Making a pizza for me and you!

This Week's Craft: Playdough
Plus flannel board make-your-own-pizzas!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Drop In Monday!

Don't forget, Monday at 1:00 is another drop-in storytime for children ages 2-6. We'll do a simple craft (probably play with playdough that is part of this week's regular storytime craft) and read a variety books, sing songs, and play action rhymes...all without a theme, just whatever strikes us! Come join the fun.

Fridays with Ms. Eileen

This Friday Ms. Eileen shared stories about scarecrows and the kids made their own adorable scarecrows from scraps of cloth and popsicle sticks. Books included "Jeb Scarecrow's Pumpkin Patch", by Jana Dillon, and "The Scarecrow's Hat", by Ken Brown. She also shared this lovely, lilting seasonal poem by Arthur Guiterman called "The Harvest Home".

The maples flare among the spruces
The bursting foxgrape spill its juices
The gentians lift their sapphire fringes
On roadways rich with golden tinges
The waddling woodchucks fill their hampers
The deermouse run, the chipmunk scampers
The squirrels scurry, never stopping
For all they hear are apples dropping
And walnuts plumping fast and faster
The bee weighs down the purple aster
Yes, hive your honey, little hummer
The woods are wavering, "Farewell Summer!"

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Storytime Week 3: The Country Fair

Our Storytime theme this week is The Country Fair.

This Week's Books:
Maisy at the Fair, by Lucy Cousins
Night at the Fair, by Donald Crews
Country Fair, by Mercer Mayer
Grandma, Grandpa, and Me, by Mercer Mayer
My Pumpkin, by Julia Noonan, ill. by Peter Lawson
Brave Potatoes, by Toby Speed and Barry Root
Minerva Louise at the Fair, by Janet Morgan Stoeke

This Week's Music:
Old Straw Hat, by Maria Muldaur
Cows, by The Seldom Herd
Dueling Banjos, by The Big Kidz Band

This Week's Action Rhyme:
My Aunt came back from the country fair
She brought for me a rocking chair (rock, rock, rock)
My Aunt came back from the country fair
She brought for me a teddy bear (hug, hug, hug)
My Aunt came back from the country fair
She brought for me a juicy pear (yum, yum, yum)
My Aunt came back from the country fair
She brought for me the old gray mare (trot, trot, trot, Giddy-up!)

This Week's Art: A Carousel from foam sheets and crayons
Plus "Old MacDonald Had a Farm"

Monday, September 20, 2010

Storytime Week 2: Dogs

This week our Storytime theme is DOGS!

This Week's Books:
Say Hello, by Rachel Isadora
Dogs, by Emily Gravett
Big Dog, Little Dog, by Dav Pilkey
Please Take Me for a Walk, by Susan Gal
Sally Goes to the Farm, by Stephen Huneck
Bark George, by Jules Feiffer

This Week's Music:
Hound Dog, by Elvis Presley
Dog's Life, by John McCutcheon
So Long Doggies, by Adam Bryant and Sandra Boynton

This Week's Action Rhymes:
One little, two little, three little kittens
Were napping in the sun.
One little, two little, three little puppies
Said, "let's have some fun!"
While the kittens were sleeping the puppies went creeping
As quietly as can be
And "Woof!
One little, two little, three little kittens
Went scampering up a tree!

Call the dog, give him some milk
Brush his fur 'til he shines like silk
Put on his collar, put on his leash
Now go for a run along the beach.

This Week's Craft: Dogs with clothes-pin legs

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Fridays with Ms. Eileen

Our older fours and fives meet with Ms. Eileen for storytime on Friday at either 10 a.m. or 1 p.m. Ms. Eileen began her Friday storytimes with stories about fairs, including Mercer Mayer's "Grandma, Grandpa, and Me", in which the "Little Critters" have a sleepover at the farm and prepare for the county fair. The "Little Critters" also show up in Mayer's "Country Fair", an easy-reader that works for storytime as well. The craft featured crayon rubbings which became country fair quilts.

Thanks to a generous patron, we have a large number of new crayons, so crayon-crafts will be making numerous showings this storytime season. Look for an upcoming Friday storytime featuring stories about crayons, as well.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Award Winners

Our newest display in the library is of some recent Children's Book Award Winners. Most everyone is familiar with the Newbery Award and the Caldicott Award, but do you know about the Geisel? Or the Sibert? Here's a quick run-down of some major awards.

Caldicott Award: A medal presented annually, also by the ALA, to the illustrator of the most distinguished American picture book for children published in the United States in the preceding year. 2010 Winner: "The Lion and the Mouse" by Jerry Pinkney

Newbery Award
: A medal presented annually by the American Library Association to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children published in the United States in the preceding year. 2010 Winner: "When You Reach Me" by Rebecca Stead

Batchelder Award: Another ALA award, this one awarded for outstanding translated book for children.

Sibert Award: Given annually for the most distinguished informational (nonfiction) book for children, awarded by the ALA.

Theodore Geisel Award: Given annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished American book for beginning readers published in English in the United States during the preceding year. The winner(s), recognized for their literary and artistic achievements that demonstrate creativity and imagination to engage children in reading.

Boston Globe-Horn Book Award: Awarded by the New England Library Association for overall excellence in nonfiction, picture book, and poetry categories.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Storytime Week One: Apples

Welcome back to Storytime! We begin our storytime sessions for Fall of 2010 with APPLES as our theme.

This Week's Books:
Apple Farmer Annie, by Monica Wellington
Ten Red Apples, by Virginia Miller

Orange Pear Apple Bear, by Emily Gravett

Ten Red Apples, by Pat Hutchins

The Apple Pie Tree, by Zoe Hall, ill. by Shari Halpern

All for Pie, Pie for All, by David Martin, ill. by Valerie Gorbachev

Dappled Apples, by Jan Carr, ill. by Dorothy Donohue

This Week's Music:
Apples and Bananas, by Raffi
Pick a Bag of Apples, by Liz Buchanan

Apple Tree, by Justin Roberts

This Week's Action Rhymes:
I see an apple, red and round
It fell from a tree onto the ground

We'll pick it up and wash it and cut it in two

Half for me and half for you

This is the tree with leaves so green

Here are the apple that hang in between

When the wind blows, the apples will fall

Here is my basket to gather them all.

This Week's Art/Craft: Apple Printing

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Storytime: Sign-Up Please

OH NO! Storytime starts on Monday and so far registration is extremely light. Too light. Frightening light. Where is everyone? Just picture it: Me, Ms. Patty, sitting in my rocking chair and doing action rhymes by myself and mournfully playing the ukulele (is that even possible?). So, please remember to sign-up for storytime and to call your friends and neighbors and insist that they, too, sign-up for storytime. There's nothing more pitiful than a storytime lady with no storytime kids.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Back to School

It's time to go back to school, that most complicated of seasons...excitement, joy, anticipation, nervousness, dread, sadness, many feelings for all involved. Ah.

As always books can help. Come into the library and check out the "Back To School" books in the bins at the front of the library. Grab a lollipop or candy while you're there as your back-to-school sweet treat. Here are some of the books you may be interested in:

- I'm Your Bus, by Marilyn Singer. With rhyming text and bright illustrations, this cheerful and fun book make the already-exciting first bus rides to school even better.

- Is Your Buffalo Ready for Kindergarten? by Audrey Vernick with hilarious illustrations byDaniel Jennewein. I love this new book. It's so sweet and funny and delivers a great message...that kindergarten is a place for everyone, and it's okay to be who you are.

-Welcome to Kindergarten, by Anne Rockwell. Rockwell is well-known for her quiet, gentle, books. In this one, a boy and his mother are introduced to kindergarten routines and activities so that the boy greets his first day feeling reassured.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Storytime Hours: A Question

It's that time of year again, time to sign-up for Storytime! Here is the schedule at this point:
2 years old: 10:00 on Monday or Thursday
4/5 years old: 10:00 or 1:00 on Fridays
3/4 years old: 1:00 on Monday or Thursday
12-23 months: 10:30 on Wednesday (in October only)

HOWEVER... a patron has requested an earlier time for 3 year olds to accommodate nap-time. In the past we've tried switching the 2s with the 3s one day a week but the 1:00 hour was even worse for napping two year olds and we had very limited enrollment. This year we are contemplating a new arrangement whereby we would have a session for 3/4 at 11:00 a.m. on either Monday or Thursday. My concern is that a.m. kindergarten ends at 11:20 and we wouldn't end storytime until 11:45 and would complicate things for some parents. I'd hate to put aside time for a storytime session and have no one show up. Our fearless leader, Nancy W., wouldn't be too happy either.

So, if you read this and have a 3 year old and would like a earlier storytime time let me know. And ask your friends. Until then, we'll keep our storytime schedule as is.

BTW, Ms. Eileen and I are working on an after-school storytime for "storytime alumnae" in grades 1-2.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ice Cream Social

We put the cherry on top of a delicious sundae of summer reading events with an ice-cream social on Monday, August 23 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. It's free for everyone so stop by and share a sweet treat and tell us what you liked about our summer reading program and what we can improve upon. Did you have a favorite event? A favorite reading prize? Did our drop-in storytime days and hours work for you? What kinds of events would you like to see next summer?

And while you're here check out the photos of our Starfish Readers. (Not everyone who read all summer long was here to have their photo taken, but we know who you are and are proud of you!) Great reading everyone.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New CDs!

Are you and your kids listening to the great CDs we have to offer at the library? Seriously good stuff. Here's a run-down of some of our newest acquisitions:

- Rock and Roll Playground, featuring various artists, put out by Putomayo World Music. This CD features rollicking, lively tunes by such favorites as Bill Harley and Dan Zanes.

- Giggling and Laughing, Silly Songs for Kids, featuring various artists, put out by Music for Little People. New and classic silly songs like Raffi's "Shake Your Sillies Out", and "The Mice Ate My Rice", by Buckwheat Zydeco

- Bugs Bunny at the Symphony, performed by the Sydney Symphony. Classical music never made you smile this much. It's classical music with a Looney Tunes twist, a great introduction for your children to the beauty of symphonic music.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Frogs and Starfish Readers

This is the final week for reading prizes at the library. The weekly prize is one of these great inflatable frogs, (Ms. Eileen's favorite).

For those of you who have read all summer (as indicated on your reading log) you get to become one of our Starfish Readers! As a Starfish Reader we will take your picture and post it in the library. In addition, you get to add your name to a book in the library...just choose a book you like, sign your name on the "Starfish Reader" bookplate and you become a permanent part of the Richmond Memorial Library.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Stories in the Shade recap

We finally had the picture perfect day for Stories in the Shade on Friday. As you may know, usually these are theme-less events so I can share stories, songs, and action rhymes new and old that tickle me. However, I found myself with a theme this past Friday as we shared all beach related books, including these two. "How Will We Get to the Beach" is a charming guessing-game of a book as mom Roxanne has 5 things that must come with her to the beach but has to find a way to get them all there (btw, no sunscreen or towel or snack, go figure, but a turtle is one of the must haves!), by Brigitte Luciani and illustrated by Eve Tharlet. "Miranda's Beach Day", written and illustrated by Holly Keller, is charming in its simple tale of a girl's day on the beach with it's hot sand and waves that make her sand castle disappear. The beautiful closing words of the book sneak up on you with their emotional message.

Don't forget next week is our last Stories in the Shade, with special guest reader Ms. Eileen!

Monday, August 2, 2010

We Love New Books

Two new books to highlight today: "Lola Loves Stories" and "The Cow Loves Cookies". Anna McQuinn and illustrator Rosalind Beardshaw bring back Lola from "Lola at the Library". Lovable Lola details her Saturday visits to the library and how each new book inspires her imagination. Whimsical and delightful. Another favorite author, Karma Wilson, brings us a book with new illustrator Marcellus Hall. Farmer feeds all the animals what they love and the cow loves cookies. Told in rhythmic prose with sweet, humourous ink and watercolor illustrations.