Tick Tock

June 23, 2015 by

Watch as Miss Nina and Wren demonstrate the “Tick Tock” rhyme that we use in our Babes in Arms storytimes at the Davis and Haggard Libraries, which is suitable for pre-walkers 0-9 months old. Try this rhyme at home and then come to Babes in Arms to learn more!

Our summer storytime session goes until August 1st!

Babes in Arms
Davis – Tuesdays at 10am
Haggard – Wednesdays at 9:30am

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Early Literacy Tip of the Week

June 22, 2015 by

When talking with your child, look for opportunities to use different words to help build their vocabulary. The more words a child knows, the easier it is for your child to recognize them when beginning to read.

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Trash Talk: Moving Toward a Zero-Waste World

June 19, 2015 by

Trash talk! : moving toward a zero-waste worldTrash Talk: Moving Toward a Zero-Waste World

By: Michelle Mulder

 

Humans have always made trash and they have always had to find a way to dispose of that trash. This book begins by discussing the history of trash and waste disposal. The ancient Minoans had trash pits that were covered over with soil, the equivalent of modern landfills. Next the author poses the question, “What is trash?” Trash is defined as something that is no longer useful. However, usefulness is in the eye of the beholder and many items could be repurposed. Old jeans can be used as housing insulation, old tires can be used as building materials, and plastic yogurt containers can be reused as pencil holders. The author discusses reusing and repairing to lessen landfill burdens and she includes some startling facts about how much trash the world’s population produces. Mulder has written a thought provoking book with compelling arguments for conservation.

 

Full-color photos of kids in action add to the reader’s understanding of the book’s concepts. This title is an excellent choice for budding environmentalists.

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The Boy and the Book

June 18, 2015 by

boybookThe Boy and the Book

By David Michael Slater

Illustrated by Bob Kolar

With just three words, this book tells the story of the joy of learning to read. It’s a struggle at first, sometimes frustrating, but when the words start to make sense, it opens up a whole new world. The young boy in the story comes into the library with his mother, sending the books scattering in terror. He finds a blue book with monsters, but doesn’t take very good care of it. When he’s gone, the book gets taped back together. The boy returns and the other books try to save their friend. This time, the book sees that in order for the boy to learn to read, he must be given the chance.

This book can help build your child’s narrative skills. By leaving out the words, it allows the reader to fill in the story with their own words and imagination. Try letting your child verbally narrate the book, or make the story up together. Narrative skills are an important part of early literacy.

Recommended for ages 2-5.

Nicki P.

Schimelpfenig Library

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The Whale in My Swimming Pool

June 17, 2015 by

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The Whale in My Swimming Pool

by Joyce Wan

One sunny day, a little boy heads outside for a swim, but his pool is already taken . . . There’s a big whale in the water and it’s not budging! The boy tries everything to get the whale to leave. Nothing seems to work. Not fetch. Not tag. Not even offering his allowance. What’s a boy to do? Luckily, he comes up with the perfect solution!

Hilarious, with bold, bright illustrations, and with the perfect punchline at the end, Joyce Wan’s The Whale in My Swimming Pool is reminiscent of Mo Willems’ Pigeon books and is the perfect read-aloud book for the summer. Prepare yourself for silliness!

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Reviewed by: Lara (Haggard Library)

 

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Nightbird

June 15, 2015 by

nightbirdNightbird

by Alice Hoffman

Nightbird is a great tale of friendship, love, and being comfortable with yourself. Twig Fowler, her mother, and her brother, James, live in the quiet town of Sidwell. Their orchard makes the best pies, butter cream, cider, cupcakes and other apple treats. But they have a secret. A curse was placed on their family generations ago and all the Fowler men are born with wings. James lives in the attic and no one in Sidwell know that he exists. There are stories about a winged monster that people see late at night. To protect James, Twig and her mother keep everyone at a distance. Twig longs for  a friend. James wishes he could live a normal life and be accepted by others. Things start to get interesting once the Hall family moves into town.

I loved this magical story. There’s even a recipe for Pink Apple Pie in the back!

If this sounds interesting to you, also check out:

Nest by Esther Ehrlich

West of the Moon by Margi Preus

Centaur Rising by Jane Yolen

The Night Fairy by Laura Amy Schlitz

A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd

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Early Literacy Tip of the Week

June 15, 2015 by

Play pretend with your child. Let your child’s imagination go wild! Encourage them to make up and act out their own stories. This builds both language and critical thinking skills.

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App Time Summer Session 1: Crepes by Suzette and Press Here

June 13, 2015 by

App Time is back at Haggard Library! We are so excited to share some more apps with you this summer and show you how to use your tablets as an early literacy tool. Unsure of what App Time is about? We demonstrate one book activity and one app activity, highlighting important features to help you choose apps for your own children. Check out the video above to hear some more information.

Our digital literacy tip for this session was: Look for apps that introduce a foreign language. Your child is already naturally learning language. Strengthen those neural connections!

szetteWe looked at the book app, Crêpes by Suzette, based on the book by Mary Wellington. It is $1.99 through iTunes and Google Play. This story follows Suzette as she goes around Paris making crêpes for a variety of people. The Read to Me option has highlighted narration, which is an important feature for early literacy. Each page has a new French word or phrase. Interaction is limited to simply tapping different people or animals to hear how the phrase is pronounced. Each person or animal has a different voice pronouncing the phrase. In the top left hand corner there is a map icon. Click on this icon to see where in Paris Suzette is selling her crêpes. The vocab icon will tell you what the French phrase means in English, German, Spanish, Japanese, and Italian. Click on the flags to hear the pronunciation in each language. From the home menu click on the DIY Crêpes tab to watch a video tutorial on making your own crêpes! Yummy! What will you put in your crepes?

press here

The activity app we demonstrated was Press Here, based on the book by Hervé Tullet and developed by Chronicle Books. It is also $1.99 through iTunes. There aren’t any written or vocal instructions, so this app encourages your child to get creative and explore. Access activities by simply pressing a dot. The Drawing activity helps build pre-writing and narrative skills. Memory builds matching skills. Get Inside is an activity that fosters color recognition. There are a variety of activities to explore in this app, so check it out!

App Time is funded by the Texas State Archives and Library Commission (TSLAC) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services(IMLS). Come to Haggard Fridays at 11am and join us for App Time. See you there!

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Little Red Henry

June 12, 2015 by

Little Red Henry

By Linda Urban

Illustrated by Madeline Valentine

Fans of Little Red Hen meet Little Red Henry!   Little redheaded Henry is the youngest of 3 children and is pampered, adored and overly protected by his whole family.  Mama, Papa, sister Mem and brother Sven can’t seem to do enough for him – brushing his teeth, choosing his clothes and carrying him from place to place all while Mama is talking to him in baby talk.  Finally Henry (who is obviously no longer an infant) has had enough and declares “I’m not a baby!”  Only to hear his mother say “Of course, you’re not. Now sit in your itty-bitty chair and let Mommy make you breakfast.”  And in a style reminiscent of The Little Red Hen the family chimes in:

“Let me,” said Papa.

            “Let me,” said Mem

            “Let me,” said Sven

            “No, thank you,” said Henry. “I can do it myself.”

            And he did.

As Henry’s independence grows, he even makes his own playdate with the boy next door where both boys enjoy the freedom of playing in the backyard.  His family, on the other hand, is at loose ends wondering what to do with all of their free time.  As each family member rediscovers the creative interests they enjoyed before Henry absorbed their every waking moment, family life returns to normal. But Henry discovers he’s not totally independent of his loving family when he still craves the usual nighttime routine of being tucked into bed for the night and sung to sleep. And, of course, his family is more than willing to oblige!

Madeline Valentine’s cartoon drawings exude the gentle humor of Henry’s steps toward independence with expressively amusing and colorful gouache drawings beginning inside the front cover and extending through to the back.  A charming story which will resonate with children and parents alike.

Reviewed by Connie (Parr Library)

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Blue on Blue

June 11, 2015 by

blueonblueBlue on Blue

By: Dianne White

Illustrations by: Beth Krommes

When you first open Blue on Blue, you may notice a familiar  illustrative style. The illustrator, Beth Krommes, is known for her illustrations in the Caldecott-winning book, The House in the Night.

The story takes place on a farm when a typical “blue on blue” day is interrupted by a thunderstorm becoming a “gray on gray” day. Then, when the sun comes out, it becomes “muddy, muddy, everywhere”. The scratch board illustrations with the lyrical writing makes this book an enjoyable one to share with your family and friends, especially if there is a “rain on rain” kind of day.

Recommended for ages 2 and up.

Reviewed by: Diana (Harrington Library)

 

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