Feb. 15 - All libraries will be closed for Presidents Day.

JCPL Kids

by: 
Anna, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

I have a preschooler. He is three years old. Three is a fun age and honestly, a challenging age. Some parents agree with me when I say that the age of "The Terrible Two's" was cake compared to the "Three-nager" years. Preschoolers are lively, they can finally say all those cute thoughts inside their minds, and they are out to explore the world around them with diligence. What engages those little minds? What are their interests? Recently, I learned some helpful, fun facts about Preschoolers from the librarians from the Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy.

  • Preschoolers are into sorting objects-This could be a fun Winter Break activity you could do at home with various things like legos. Sort them into group by color. Or gather some rocks from outside to sort by size. Or fill the bathroom sink with water to experiment what household objects sink or float. Be sure to ask your child why the apple floats. Count and record the sinking and floating items. This engages their minds. Simple experiments and sorting. 

Opposites Books demonstrate sorting catagories. For example light and heavy things are opposite and can be sorted into two different groups. 

  •  Preschoolers are growing in their emotional intelligence-My three year old has been sharing stories of compassion and he can now better understand how other people are feeling. We really enjoy reading Mo Willems' books because of all the amazing illustrations of various facial expressions and their matching emotions.

 

  • They are developing creative and abstract thinking-They enjoy Non-Fiction books, Poems, and books with complex or detailed illustrations. 

Try some Non-Fiction books with beautiful pictures. They find animals interesting and beautiful. 

Music Class Today is fun to read for adults. It's rythmic. My son loves it too bcause of the complex, interesting illustrations. 

 

by: 
Karen, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian


There is something so special about a Snow Day.  As a child, my brother, sisters and I would suit up and spend the day outside making snow angels, building snow forts and creating snow families.  Whether you love being out in the snow or staying warm inside with a cup of hot cocoa, a snow day is a lovely surprise at any age.

Here are some snow-inspired books perfect for a day inside or for curling up together after a snowy adventure outside. 

Snow by Sam Usher.  A sweet story about a little boy who waits for grandpa to play in the snow.

 

The Thing About Yetis by Vin Vogel.  Yetis love all things winter, but also need a little warmth and sunshine from time to time.

 

Froggy Se Viste or Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London.  One of my favorites in Spanish or English.  Froggy wants to play in the snow, but mom has to remind him to put on his winter clothes!  

 

Up & Down by Britta Teckentrup. Little Penguin wants to visit his friend on a faraway iceberg.  A lovely lift the flap book that teaches positional vocabulary words (high above, deep below...).  

 

 

Max and Marla by Alexandra Boiger.  Twos friends who aspire to be in the Winter Olympics find joy in the journey of practice and perseverance.  

 

When I Grow Up by Emma Dodd.  About to hit the shelves at the library!  This book is a beautiful short story of how little bear wants to be like his parent when he grows up.  

Image credit: Flickr

by: 
Sandi, Arvada Library

Twenty-five years ago thriteen pieces of art were stolen from the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum in Boston.  The art has never been recovered, except in the pages of Pieces and Players, the latest installment in mystery writer Blue Balliett's Chigaco based detective series.  Her five detective heros from earlier books join forces to find, at last, the thirteen pieces of art, worth over 500 million dollars.  The art has been missing only a few weeks, and Petra, Calder, Tommy, Early, and Zoomy use their unique abilities to try crack the case, with the help of thier teacher, art benefactor Mrs. Sharpe, and her mysterious nephew.  Whatever the outcome of this story, it is not fact.  The paintings and sculptures are still missing.   

Read all six of Blue Balliett's books.  Which will be your favorite?  Mine is Danger Box.  



Chasing Vermeer
, by Blue Balliett: Petra and Calder investigate the theft of a valuable painting by artist Vermeer,and fear their teacher may be responsible.  



The Wright Three
, by Blue Balliett: Calder, Petra, and Tommy use their unique abilities to save the historic Robie House, imagined and constructed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright.  



Calder Game
, by Blue Balliette: Calder goes missing at the same time as a priceless mobile by Alexander Calder. Tommy and Petra travel to England to find Calder, and the stolen mobile.



Danger Box
, by Blue Balliett: Zoomy's criminal father steals an extremely valuable book.  A crowed of villains are after the book, and Zoomy is determined to defend it.  Not an easy task when you are nearly blind, and make lists to calm down.  Be frightened for friend Zoomy.



Hold Fast
, by Blue Balliett:  When Early's father disappears, presumed a criminal on the run, she never looses faith in him, or her ability to bring down a criminal ring operating out of the Chicago Public Library.  



Pieces and Players
, by Blue Balliett:  Petra, Calder, Tommy, Early, and Zoomy join forces to find thirteen pieces of stolen art.  They are open minded, finding and considering clues where most adults would only laugh.  

by: 
Jill J. Outreach Librarian, Kids & Families

Recently, I have been focusing on encouraging my kindergartner to use his narrative skills. This is an important early literacy skill because it involves having kids describe things and events by telling stories, knowing the order of events, and making predictions. Many of our story times have involved my son “reading” to me and telling me stories. For example, he has especially enjoyed reading and acting out the classic story the Three Little Pigs. Check out Paul Galdone’s version of the classic tale.

By asking my son questions about the stories we read together, he can practice being a narrator or storyteller. This helps kids make connections between books and their own lives. Also, don’t be afraid to read a story over and over again. When kids hear a story over and over again, they are absorbing the structure of that story.  This helps them to be able to act it out on their own.  And THAT gets them excited about reading!

You can expand this by asking your child to talk about doing an activity in various steps. For instance, have your child help you bake cookies. Then, have them talk with you about what you did first, then next, then next and what you did last. Or have them draw a picture of the cookie making process and show it in stages. You could even have them draw the scenes in separate boxes. Cut out each “boxed “ scene and then have your child put them in sequential order. Some of the first stages of writing involve drawing pictures and then telling stories about what the pictures represent. Encourage a child's narrative skills by saying, “Tell me about this picture!” or “What's happening in this picture?”

Here are some great wordless books that kids can use to have fun exercising their narrative skills:

Red Hat by Lita Judge

Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle

A Ball for Daisy by Chris Raschka

Quest by Aaron Becker

 

Image credit: Casa Thomas Jefferson on Flickr.

by: 
Jenny, Golden Library

Friday, December 4th

10:30am: Festive Family Fun

Join us for a special outdoor hayride storytime! You might need mittens and parkas, you might need sunscreen, but we'll be doing a holiday craft and you can get your picture taken with Santa! No registration required (weather permitting)

12-8pm: Holiday Used Book Sale

Make a massive dent in your holiday shopping list - without making one in your wallet - at our annual Holiday (gently) Used Book Sale. Presented by the Friends of Jefferson County Public Library. All proceeds benefit library programs like Summer Reading!

5:30-8:30pm: Holiday Open House

We close at 5pm, but only so we can snazz up the place and re-open at 5:30pm! We're celebrating the Candlelight Walk with:

  • Cookies and hot cider
  • Ballon sculptor
  • Harpist Maria O'Bryan performs from 6-8pm

Come see us before the fireworks!

Saturday, December 5th 

10am-4pm: Holiday Used Book Sale

Too much going on last night to concentrate on our great selection of used books for sale? It happens. Come by on Saturday and browse at your leisure!

Saturday, December 12th

8:30-10:30am: Breakfast with Santa at Table Mountain Inn

A pancake breakfast storytime with Santa? Yes, please! And wait...do Santa's elves seem familiar? Reservations required: http://goldencochamber.org/olde-golden-christmas

by: 
Leslie, Standley Lake

 
The holidays are here, the holidays are here!

Kids are out of school, family is visiting....you might be looking for some extra things to do, right?

Consider a museum! And specifically, consider a storyime at a museum for something new. For example, the Denver Firefighters Museum has a "storytime at the Station" with stories, songs, and take-home crafts the first Wednesday of each month for ages 2-6. Children are admitted free with a paid adult admission.

And to make it even better, use a Culture Pass from the Library to make the adult admission free too!

Another fun storytime opportunity on the first Wednesday of the month is at Dinosaur Ridge. TricerTOTS is a dinosaur-themed storytime for ages 2-5, and includes a 10-15 minute craft or activity.

And don't forget there are always great storytimes all week at your JCPL libraries, too!

 

Image credit: Taylor Library on Flickr

by: 
Barbara, Evergreen Library

Things to be grateful for:

Family - Check

Friends - Check

Living in Colorado - Check

Health - Check

Low Gas Prices - Double Check

Great Books I've Read, or Am Planning to Read This Year - Check

Sharing That List with EVERYONE - Check

MY DIARY FROM THE EDGE OF THE WORLD

Jodi Lynn Anderson

 THE THING ABOUT JELLYFISH

Ali Benjamin 

THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE

Kim Brubaker Bradley

 GEORGE

Alex Gino 

LOST IN THE SUN

Lisa Graff

 LISTEN, SLOWLY

Thanhha Lai 

FRIENDS FOR LIFE

Andrew Norriss

THE NEST

Kenneth OPPEL

 THE MARVELS

Brian Selznick

 GOODBYE STRANGER

Rebecca Stead

 Wonderful People to Share My Favorite Books With - CHECK!

by: 
Barbara, Evergreen Library

A long time ago in a galaxy far far away...a farm boy, a jedi, a smuggler, a wookie, a sith lord, two droids and a princess walk into a bar, quite literally, and set the stage, for the ultimate battle of good vs. evil, and the Star Wars universe was born! If you're like me, and a few million other fans, you only watched Monday Night Football last week to see the, latest and last, trailer for Star Wars the Force Awakens, and it didn't disappoint. Now you ask, what is a diehard fan to do, between now and December 18th?

READ of course! and attend an upcoming Star Wars Program @ your local library.

(If you missed, or even if you didn't, the Star Wars the Force Awakens trailer, check out the video at the bottom of this post!)

Star Wars, a New Hope: The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy

by Alexandra Bracken

Star Wars, the Empire Strikes Back: So You Want to be a Jedi?

by Adam Gidwitz

Star Wars, Return of the Jedi: Beware the Power of the Dark Side

by Tom Angleberger

Star Wars the Weapon of a Jedi: a Luke Skywalker Adventure

by Jason Fry

Star Wars Moving Target: a Princess Leia Adventure

by Cecil Castellucci

Star Wars Smuggler's Run: a Han Solo & Chewbacca Adventure

by Greg Rucka

Happy Reading and May the Force be With You!!!

 

by: 
Karen, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

I love the fall! From the changing leaves to drinking hot apple cider on chilly evenings, the fall brings a rich variety of things to do and to make.  When I was a teacher, we would go on nature walks and talk about the season changes while collecting leaves for crafts and games.  I thought I would share a couple of my favorite craft activities as well as some fall themed books.  I savor this season as long as I can before the snow flies!

*I found instructions for these activities and more on www.kidsactivities.net. Make sure to check out 'Stained Glass Leaves with crayons'.  Another one of my favorites!

1. Sun Prints

You will need: Colored construction paper (that can fade in the sun), leaves gathered outside, glue stick or liquid glue, tape

  • Dab a bit of glue into the back of a leaf.  I suggest using leaves that are not too crunchy.
  • Glue the leaf to a piece of construction paper.
  • Tape the paper to a sunny window with the leaf facing outside.  Leave for 3-4 days or until you notice the paper color has faded.
  • Remove from window and gently peal the leaf off to reveal the print.  
  • Talk science with your child! Why did the paper around the leaf fade? (bleaching)  Why didn't the paper under the leaf fade? (not exposed to the light or shadowed)

2. Leaf Animals, People, Cars...

You will need: A variety of leaf types- different shapes, sizes and colors, construction paper, liquid glue, tape, crayons or markers

  • Gather different kinds of leaves outside- make sure they aren't too dry!  Talk about sizes, shapes, colors.  
  • Arrange leaves on paper to make an animal or person or car.  What other things can your child think of?
  • Glue each piece on the paper.  Let your creation dry.  Tape can help hold leaf edges down.  
  • Use crayons or markers to draw eyes, other body parts and details.  Make a fall scene! 

 

Fall themed books to inspire you! 

Fall Leaves by Loretta Holland. Gorgeous Illustrations light up each page!

Winter is Coming by Tony Johnston. See the fall through the little girl's eyes as she returns to same place to watch autumn change to winter.  

 

Photo credit: Flickr

by: 
Anna, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

I recently heard Rae Pica speak on the importance of moving while learning. This is active learning; engaging the body and mind. Research shows children learn best when they experience new ideas and concepts through play and movment. In an article Pica wrote titled In Defense of Active Learningshe explains that moving our bodies helps activate our brains. She had a few cute pre-writing movement ideas I thought would be fun to do at home with your little ones. 

- Hand and Finger Activities: Sing "Open, Shut Them". Many libraries sing this song to begin their Storytimes. This song activates the brains of our babies, toddlers, and preschoolers as they practice their hand-eye coordination; a must-have pre-writing skill.  

- Sky Writers: Use your index finger to "write" a letter, word, or a name in the sky. This will help your child practice the feeling of straight and curvy. You could take this a step further and pretend to put your sky writer in your belly button or on the tip of your nose while writing the word in the air. Kids love the belly button writer and it's super cute to watch too! 

- The Above, Below, and On movement: Tape a line on the floor, use the straight edge of a rug or strech a ribbon across the floor and jump above the line, below the line, or on the line. This will help your child understand where to start and where to finish writing lower case and upper case letters. After playing this game, practice writing letters, words, or names on paper. 

- Build a Story: Start a story and take turns adding to the plot creating the beginning, middle, and end of a story. For example, you could start this activity by saying, " Once there was a dog who..." and let your child add the next idea. Then you, or another family member contributes the following part of the story. This activity demonstrates the beginning, middle, and end of a story. It's a great way to pass the time in the car too! 

-The Mirror Game: This game is important for replicating what the eye sees. This replication is what learning to write is all about. Stand infront of your child and take turns mimicing each others' movements. You and your child should try to move as if you were seeing a reflection of yourself in the mirror. Lucy does it best in this video clip below. Lucy is a crack up and I think this should have you and your child smiling too! Go ahead, throw on that Halloween costume while you do this! 

Come to one of our 'Movin and Grovin' Fests'. The next fest is this Saturday, October 24th, at the Arvada Library and the Evergreen Library from 11:00am-4:00pm. We will have crafts! 

Photo Credit: Neville Nel

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