Count the Monkeys, a new picture book by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Kevin Cornell, is right up my alley. Right up my goofy, silly-sense-of-humor alley, that is. Right from the title page we're invited to count the monkeys in the book. However, upon turning to the first page, we find NO MONKEYS. 1 king cobra has scared them off. When we quietly (so as not to draw the cobra's attention) turn the page to see if the monkeys are there, we are confronted with 2 mongooses (or is it mongeese?) who have chased away the cobra. The story continues in a similar fashion, with various non-primate animals scaring each other away. We have to zig zag our hands, roar, and shout "SCRAM!" in order to be able to turn the page and cross our fingers that we will FINALLY get to count the monkeys. But will the monkeys ever appear?
This is a silly, engaging, active story that'll be great to share with your preschool-aged children. They can participate in the story by doing the motions described, and helping to count the animals. It will also be fun to anticipate what will happen on the next page - will the monkeys be there, or will another creature have scared them off? After reading, you might try inventing your own cumulative counting story. Ask your child to draw 1 item, then two, then three, etc., while you add the words that they tell you to the page. Telling stories is an important pre-reading skill to develop and helps grow a child's imagination, while drawing is a good way to start building the muscles needed for writing!
Our author spotlight today is on Caroline Carroll: not only the author of several books but also a JCPL staff member! She has co-authored twelve children's books with her husband Michael, including I Love God's Green Earth. Here's what Caroline had to say about this book:
"This book is perfect for kids who love God's Earth and want to take care of it. Each devotion focuses on what Scripture says about God's creation and how kids can be good stewards of this Earth. As they learn how to care for creation, they will also learn more about God and how to nurture their relationship with Him. Inside they'll find fun facts, jokes, Scripture lessons, activities...all designed to help kids learn how to take care of Gods Green Earth."
Come on out and talk to Caroline about all of her books at Books and Bites on September 20th 6 to 8:30 pm at the Arvada Library!
Do you love the movie Mary Poppins? Did you know that it is based on the book by P.L. Travers? Are you curious how the classic book became a classic movie? Check out this trailer for the new Disney movie Saving Mr. Banks in theaters this December. What is your favorite song from the 1964 classic movie?
Curious about what King Arthur was like as a kid? How about Guinevere? Cheryl Carpinello re-introduces us to the characters we love in all the Arthurian Legends - but as children - in her books Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend and Young Knights of the Round Table: The King's Ransom. Come on out and talk all things medieval with Cheryl at Books and Bites on September 20th from 6 to 8:30 pm at the Arvada Library!
The Rocky Mountain Shipwrights taught kids at the Lakewood Library the secret of how to make a ship in a bottle. Do you know how it's done?* Visit the Lakewood Library to see the Rocky Mountain Shipwrights model ship on display by the newspapers. While you're there, tell us: what kind of programs for kids would you like to attend at your local library?
*Here's a hint.
Ever play marbles? No? Ever heard of it? It's a great game of skill and fun that kids played "back in the day." While the game was mostly played by boys, there have been some pretty good girl players, too! Read about the life and marble-playing adventures of Freedom in the Marble Queen, Stephanie Blake's debut novel and a Colorado Book Award Finalist!
Come meet Stephanie Blake at Books and Bites on September 20th, 6 to 8:30 pm, at the Arvada Library.
We do lots of Baby Times here at the library and I always have parents asking what are the "best books" for babies. This could be a very long list, but I found a list from Parents Magazine that shows the 25 must-have books for babies that I agree is a pretty good one!
Check-out the list to see how many you recognize!
A good baby book can become a classic instantly and the classics stand the test of time. If you find some you would like to try out with your baby, look for them in our catalog and place a hold to pick-up at your local library!
Learn some new songs and rhymes to share with your young child and help them build their early literacy skills too! StoryBlocks, a project of Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy, has just added some new videos for you to check out. There are songs and rhymes appropriate for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, and some in Spanish, too! If you watch closely, you might even see a few JCPL staff members in some of the videos!
What are your favorite songs and rhymes to share with your young child? Let us know - your favorite may show up as a StoryBlocks video in the future!
Children’s book author Audrey Wood was born in Little Rock, Arkansas on August 12th, 1948. When she was a toddler, she would watch her father repaint murals for the Ringling Brothers Circus in Florida. In fact, many of the circus performers grew to be her friends. She can remember being rocked in the arms of the fat lady and sitting in the lap of the world’s tallest man when she was a kid!
Both Audrey Wood’s father and grandfather were artists and by first grade she decided to become one too! By fourth grade she wanted to become a children’s book author. Audrey Wood painted, danced, acted, and played music as a child. She and her sisters put on plays for their neighbors and friends in their basement and charged 25 cents for each person who came to the show! Dr. Seuss is her favorite author. She once got into trouble in school for crossing out his name on a book and putting her own in its place!
In 1969, Audrey Wood married Don Wood. He is also a children’s book author and illustrator. They have written many books together; you will see some of these below. It wasn’t until her son, Bruce, was born that Wood decided to pursue her goal to become a children’s author. Since then she has become quite a successful one! Check out some of her books below, all of which are available from the library.