Tag Archives: families

#blogbookaday: Alma and How She Got Her Name

4 May

AlmaSummary:  “If you ask her, Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela has way too many names: six! How did such a small person wind up with such a large name? Alma turns to Daddy for an answer and learns of Sofia, the grandmother who loved books and flowers; Esperanza, the great-grandmother who longed to travel; José, the grandfather who was an artist; and other namesakes, too. As she hears the story of her name, Alma starts to think it might be a perfect fit after all — and realizes that she will one day have her own story to tell. In her author-illustrator debut, Juana Martinez-Neal opens a treasure box of discovery for children who may be curious about their own origin stories or names.” (Taken from Goodreads)

Review: A little girl with a big name becomes the protagonist of this story as her father tells her about the family members she was named after. Alma soon realizes that she’s a little bit of each family member and a little bit all her own and that her name fits perfectly.

Personal Reaction: Juana Martinez-Neal does an amazing job of weaving Alma’s family story as her father tells Alma about all the people she was named for. I loved how after each little story, Alma embraced that part of her name – realizing that she is like many of her ancestors. I loved the pencil sketches that at times look like Alma herself was drawing them – with words written in Spanish on the map and her drawings (a touch that many Spanish-speaking families will enjoy, I hope). I connected with this story in that my middle name (although I only have one) was chosen because my parents knew a number of strong women that shared the same name. After doing some work on Ancestry.com, we found some old family names that my brother has chosen for his own children, which makes me so happy – that feeling of family and strength.

Title: Alma and How She Got Her Name
Author: Juana Martinez-Neal
Illustrator: Juana Martinez-Neal
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication Date: April 10, 2018


#blogbookaday (1)This is a new idea I’m trying on my blog this year that was inspired by @donalynbooks and @heisereads – to provide a brief review of a picture book every day of 2018. You’ll get a brief summary of the story, a review of the content, illustrations and theme, my personal reaction to the book and all the pertinent publication information! Enjoy!

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AtoZ Blogging Challenge – “X” Marks the Spot

27 Apr

2000px-Treasure_map_-_black.svg.pngProgram Name: X Marks the Spot: A Library Scavenger Hunt

What: This is a great program to introduce the library layout to kids (or adults!) It can be as simple as giving a library tour and then handing a card to each child instructing them to search for a specific item. Or it can be very labor intensive and somewhat confusing if you’re doing separate clues for each scavenger hunt team. But, it does help kids become familiar with the library and where to find information.

Where: This program must happen out on the library floor, so choose a day and time when the library is typically a little quieter or offer it during a sleepover event as some libraries have.

When: This program can happen at any time during the year. We’ve offered scavenger hunts to elementary school classroom visits and more in-depth ones as a library program for our middle school kids.

Who: Again, we’ve offered this for both elementary and middle school students, but you could do this for teens and adults too! The only group it doesn’t work so well for is kids that aren’t reading yet as figuring out clues can be difficult when you can’t read them.

How: Like I mentioned previously, this can be as simple as handing a card to each child and asking them to go find the item(s) listed. Or you can hide clues in specific titles and teach kids more about how to read spine labels and the Dewey Decimal System.

Alternatives:

  • Partner with Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library online where they have a complete scavenger hunt for a library ready to go!
  • Check on Pinterest to see how other libraries have held their own scavenger hunts.
  • Offer a Library 101 program – give a library tour, talk about programs and resources and then let families wild in the library on a scavenger hunt for books they want to take home!

a2z-h-small

During the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2018 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I’ll be offering you a library program plan with everything you to need to re-create it at your own library. Most of these programs we’ve offered in the past, others are programs I’d like to try in the future. I’m always looking for new inspiration and I thought you might be too!

AtoZ Blogging Challenge – Noon Year’s Eve Party

16 Apr

balloon-balloons-bright-796606.jpgProgram Name: Noon Year’s Eve Countdown

What: This is an adorable idea I borrowed from another library as a way for families to celebrate the New Year at a countdown at noon instead of midnight so that the little ones could be awake to celebrate. We’ve done this a couple of times and have created a photo booth area, a craft to make noise makers, music, a read aloud, dancing and more. But, I must say that the kids absolute favorite part is the countdown at 11:59am with music and a balloon drop! It’s pretty magical and the kids LOVE it!

Where: We host this program in our children’s department as the week between Christmas and New Year’s is usually pretty quiet – we don’t usually hold any programs during this time – except for this one, making it a big draw for families.

When: Although many of the programs I’m talking about during the AtoZ Challenge can be done at any time of year, this is a specific time – December 30th from 11:30am-12:30pm.

Who: We open this program up to families – gearing it to children in preschool and early elementary school as they most likely aren’t staying up until midnight for the real celebration.

How: Our children’s librarian hosts this party – it’s fairly easy going with a variety of stations for the kids to check out and then gathering everyone up for the balloon drop. The set-up is definitely the hardest part of this program, we usually go online to see how other people have created balloon drops and the disposable plastic table cloths are the easiest way to hold the balloons close to the ceiling until you’re ready to let them fall.

Alternatives:

  • We also offered a Lunar New Year program this year which is the New Year’s celebration of many Asian countries.
  • You could create a program based on how other cultures celebrate the New Year and create a bulletin board or table displays to show the difference.

a2z-h-small

During the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2018 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I’ll be offering you a library program plan with everything you to need to re-create it at your own library. Most of these programs we’ve offered in the past, others are programs I’d like to try in the future. I’m always looking for new inspiration and I thought you might be too!

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