Tag Archives: storytime

Early Literacy At Its Finest

6 Jul

There’s a great article on the School Library Journal’s website about the positive effects of storytime on young children. Storytime began in the late 1800s and has changed drastically over the years from a time when children were expected to sit quietly and listen to an adult read books to today’s version of storytime that includes a wide variety of actions, senses, books, songs, dances and more.

I don’t think any librarian out there would argue that storytime is unhelpful to children, but there have been few studies to show the actual effects storytime has on PreK children. I think children’s librarians are also hesitant to say they are experts in the field as many don’t have a child development background and feel uncomfortable telling parents what they should be doing at home. New studies show that being intentional at storytime about early literacy skills makes a difference. Honestly, many of the early literacy skills I’ve shared with parents and caregivers in the past are things they already do, I just give it a name and explain why it’s so important.

I found this article to a fascinating read and really enjoyed learning more about research being done in the public library field. I’d love to see more research focused not only on early literacy, but on public libraries in general. We do far more good than people realize and we need to make ourselves known.


Partnering with Parks & Recreation

12 Jan

71cb890892149fa66a4512232e657367.jpgI had a meeting with our township’s Parks & Recreation department recently and it was so wonderful that it didn’t end up like an episode of the NBC show Parks & Recreation, rather we’re planning for ways to partner with each other while also not stepping on each other’s toes. Our community has a brand new community center which is a HUGE draw for our residents and our Parks & Rec department is not only running the center but also moved their office to the building as well, so we’re all adjusting as programming has changed, spaces have changed and learning how we can partner together.

While our Board of Supervisors is looking for us to partner together, we are both trying to figure out ways to do so, while not undercutting the funds the community center needs to run and at the same time, not charging library patrons for programs. Needless to say, we’ve gotten really creative about how we partner. We offering a fitness class once a month to promote the community center programs, while also promoting healthy living and health literacy from the library perspective. The Parks & Rec staff have given us a certain number of spaces for our patrons to experience these classes for free.

We’re also offering a library card drive next month – which is super simple! Library card applications and a staff member at the community center for a few hours to promote library programs.

We’re also putting together a joint grant application for a Healthy Living series of programs over the course of the year. Four programs, one for each season – Swim-Up Storytime at the Community Center pool with fun music and craft for the summer, Soups & Stews for healthy eating in the fall, an essential oils program in the winter and a container gardening program for the spring. We’re hoping that by off-setting the cost through a grant, we won’t have to worry about charging residents for the program and the Community Center/Parks & Rec department will be compensated for the use of the space and for any instructors we need to hire for the programs.

Jbrary – A Resource You Don’t Want To Miss

9 Dec

download.pngIf you’re a storytime librarian, a preK teacher, mom, dad, aunt, uncle, grandparent, sibling, etc., you have to take some time to explore Jbrary’s website.  Jbrary is the brain child of two children’s librarians in Vancouver, British Columbia and it’s an absolutely amazing resource filled with books, songs, fingerplays, rhymes and more.  And the best part is that they film the songs for their YouTube channel, making it so easy to learn (especially for tone-deaf librarians like myself!)

My own storytime has benefited greatly from the resources I’ve found on Jbrary. If you only try one new song in the next year – my kids LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Fruit Salad (and Bananas Unite and See the Little Bunnies Sleeping and… you get the idea), basically everything I’ve tried my kids go crazy for!

And you need to stop by and see the 2016 Favorite Storytime Picture Books – all books published over the course of the past year that are tried and true books perfect for sharing one-on-one or with a larger group! What’s great is that there are books on this list for babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and early elementary school, so no one will feel left out! So take some time to check out this amazing resource that just might make life a little easier when planning storytime or sharing time with your favorite little ones!

Picture Book Month Recap

1 Dec

PBMBADGE-AMBASSADOR.jpgI spent the month of November posting book suggestions for each day of the month with themes from the Picture Book Month website.  There are ten suggestions for each theme – some new, some older classics, some perfect for larger storytime groups and others perfect to snuggle one-on-one!  Take a look and enjoy! And if you have a little extra time, I strongly suggest heading over to the Picture Book Month website and checking out the essays that children’s book authors and illustrators wrote about the importance of picture books!

November 1 – Bears
November 2 – School
November 3 – Monkeys
November 4 – Dogs
November 5 – Fractured Fairytales/Tall Tales
November 6 – Food
November 7 – Presidents/Elections
November 8 – Pirates
November 9 – Reading/Books
November 10 – Dinosaurs
November 11 – Peace
November 12 – Cats
November 13 – Mice
November 14 – Music
November 15 – Travel
November 16 – Jungle
November 17 – Insects
November 18 – Birds
November 19 – Babies/Kids
November 20 – Weather
November 21 – History
November 22 – Pumpkins/Fall
November 23 – Chocolate/Dessert
November 24 – Holidays
November 25 – Farm
November 26 – Sports
November 27 – Family
November 28 – Under the Sea
November 29 – Chickens
November 30 – Bunnies

Picture Book Month Theme: Chickens

29 Nov


You’ll be seeing a lot of picture books on my blog throughout the month of November as we celebrate Picture Book Month.  You’ll definitely want to check out the website as picture book authors and illustrators will be posting an essay each day about the importance of picture books!  Check back daily for some great pictures surrounding a specific theme!

  1. Chicks and Salsa by Aaron Reynolds
  2. Louise, The Adventures of a Chicken by Kate DiCamillo
  3. Chickerella by Mary Jane Auch
  4. Big Fat Hen by Keith Baker
  5. Big Chickenby Leslie Helakoski
  6. Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein
  7. A Hat for Minerva Louise by Janet Morgan Stoeke
  8. The Little Red Hen by Byron Barton
  9. Blue Chicken by Deborah Freeman
  10. Chickens to the Rescue by John Himmelman
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