Monday, November 29, 2010

Bottoms Up

Some are big, some are small, some are round, some are flat. We all have them. Bottom, derriere, bum, tushy, the names go on and on. Believe it or not, the library owns several books devoted to you guessed it, BUTTS! Here are my favorites:

These books actually encourage some early literacy skills! The two that come to mind for me are Vocabulary and Print Motivation. Your kids will learn names for butts they never knew. Whether that's the kind of vocabulary you want them to learn, of course that's up to you! But just so you know, my son loves Chicken Cheeks, and he doesn't go around saying all the different names for his bottom after we read it. Of course, he's not quite 3, so that could change! More importantly, if your kids enjoy these books, they are developing the skill of Print Motivation, or the love of books. In my opinion, reading kids books they like, regardless of the topic, will go much further toward developing a future love of reading than reading them "quality literature" you feel like they should hear.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Boxes are the best

Boxes are pretty fabulous. I remember as a kid when my little brother held a box sale in the front yard. It's amazing that something so simple can hold so much imagination. It's only natural that authors have captured this feeling in picture books. Here are my favorites on the subject. Maybe your little one will be inspired to find adventure in a box!

Birthday Box by Leslie Patricelli. It's baby's birthday and the best present is the box things were packed in.

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis. Older kids will giggle along as bunny insists that he is not playing with a box, but much more exciting things instead.

Thank You Bear by Greg Foley. Bear thinks he has found the best gift for his friend Mouse, except everyone else criticizes his choice.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Family Ties

So the family is in town. You've done the celebrating. Now what? Take advantage of the family time and head over to the library for our Family Ties program. On Friday, Nov. 26, from 2-5 p.m. stop by the Community Room to craft together and share some memories.

We'll have plenty of craft supplies for you to get creative. And as part of National Listening Day, we'll have recording equipment handy for you to record loved ones reminiscing about their lives. You can preserve their memories for years to come. 

Sounds like fun for everyone...see you then!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Reading the Winners

It's the season, at least in libraries, for gathering our predictions of this year's pick for the Newbery Medal. We argue and advocate for our favorite children's book published this year and hope that our favorite is the one chosen. It's usually around this time that kids (and elementary education students) come in with their assignment to "read a winner."

One young girl took this to the extreme. To be exact, as a second grader she decided to read all, yes, all, of the past Newbery Medal winners before she entered middle school. Laura Rogers decided not just to read them, but to talk about them too...on her blog.

I love having insight into these books from an audience member that these books are chosen for. Having reached her goal (amazing!), she's now reading classic great books and the contenders for this year's medal. Very awesome!

P.S. For those interested, the winner will be announced in January.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Secret Life of Ms. Finkleman

Fifth-grader Bethesda Fielding likes school. She doesn't even mind sitting through Mr. Melville's history class even though he is kind of intimidating. She looks forward to his Special Projects, and this one is no different. The students have been charged with the mission of solving a mystery in life. Bethesda decides to solve the mystery of Ms. Finkleman. She is this mousy, little boring music teacher that nobody really even notices. Or is she? When Bethesda finds an old '80s punk record of her dad's which just happens to have a picture of their very own Ms. Finkleman on the cover, the whole school goes berserk with excitement. And Ms. Finkleman doesn't seem so boring and mousy anymore.

Read The Secret Life of Ms. Finkleman, by Ben H. Winters. This is a fun, funny, touching book that I recommend for about 3rd grade and above.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Turkey Time

Join us on Saturday, November 20 from 1:30 to 2:30 in the Puett Room as we make a little turkey decor for your Thanksgiving dinner table. Napkin holders, placemats, bouncing don't want to miss it!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Kneebone Boy

Otto, Lucia, and Max Hardscrabble don't live a normal life. Their mom has been missing for years, and for all they know she could be dead. Their dad leaves for weeks at a time for work; he paints portraits of former royalty who are no longer so royal. He is about to leave again, but this time it is different. They usually have time to prepare, but they just got home from school, and their bags are packed. They also find out that they're not staying with Mrs. Carnival (thank goodness, because Max is tired of popping the boil on the back of her neck) but instead are going to stay with their dad's cousin, Angela, in London. The only problem is, when they get to Angela's, they find only a mean neighbor, Angela's mean dog, and a mean dogsitter at her house. I won't tell the whole story, but just know that the kids meet a tattooed man, they come upon a very oddly shaped castle and its folly (you'll have to read the book to find out what a castle's folly is), and they end up acquiring a 5-legged cat. You'll also just have to read this book by Ellen Potter to find out why it is called The Kneebone Boy. I would recommend if for about 4th grade and up.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Food, Wonderful Food!

Tis the season for cooking...and baking....and candy making. Cooking as a family can be a lot of fun. It's also a great literacy skill. Not only do you have to read what to do, but you also need to understand how the numbers work with the recipe. We have lots of cookbooks for kids in our Juvenile Non Fiction section, J 641.5, with recipes from around the country and the world.

Cook It Together by Annabel Karmel. Yummy recipes with great pictures showing most of the steps.

Emeril's There's a Chef in My World by Emeril Lagasse. For a family looking for a culinary adventure, you could try some of the recipes from this book.

Ratatouille What's Cooking? A Cookbook for Kids. Everyone's favorite cooking rat presents some tasty French treats. Happy cooking!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Art in Action!

This one's for the artsy and crafty grown-ups out there:

Stop by the Community Room this Saturday afternoon, 1-5 p.m., and watch watercolor paint, acrylics, beads and more transform into works of art. Tigard artists will answer your questions as they fashion new creations and display recent works. A "Make Your Own Masterpiece" station will be available for the younger artists in your family.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Celebrating Everyday Animals & Plants

Endangered species are often in the news, but what about those wily, adaptable animals and plants that we see every day, like crows, squirrels, dandelions and ants? Ubiquitous: Celebrating Nature's Survivors, written by Joyce Sidman and illustrated by Beckie Prange, is a unique blend of poetry, facts, and gorgeous watercolored linocuts, singing the praises of beings that have managed to make it through millions of years. Read it with your young ones, and gain a new appreciation for common critters.