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Storytimes

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: 
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: 
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

by: 
Karen, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

With the Rae Pica Movin' and Groovin event coming up on October 14 at the Lakewood Cultural Center, I just had to write about movement. Moving our bodies strengthens our brain and reading skills.  Did you know the simple act of touching your left foot with your right hand and vice versa (or crossing the midline) activates each side of your brain?  Crossing the midline powerfully impacts reading, writing and physical development.  

  • Read this article from North Shore Pediatrics.  It gives detailed information about the importance of 'crossing the midline' as it pertains to brain development and future learning. There are activity suggestions like 'Pop bubbles with only one hand' and 'Reach for a bean bag across the midline and throw it' to get you and your child started.

The video from Clamber Club shows children participating in different activities that encourage 'bilateral intergration' or using both sides of the brain.  

Have you ever moved to familiar songs like 'Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes' or 'We're Goin' on a Bear Hunt'?  These songs use TPR or Total Physical Response.  TPR is fantastic for first and second language learning.  Like showing a picture to represent a word, the meaning becomes clear when one sees it in action (ie. moving your arms like the wheels on the bus). Matching actions to words helps children (and adults;) see, feel and hear the meaning.  Did you know you were already an expert in such a sophisticated concept?! 

 

You will notice we move a lot in Storytime. Try Storytime songs and movement at home! 

 

Image credit: Flickr

by: 
Anna, Kids & Families Outreach

 

Did you know singing with your child is one way to prepare your child to read? How does singing help with reading?

- Songs introduce new words. Song lyrics often use different vocabulary than our everyday spoken language.

-Also, the different musical notes couple with the different syllables of a word. Singing and listening to you sing will help your child understand the structure and sounds of a word.

-Reading books that can be sung is a great way to show children that words are everywhere, even in songs. Words are not just in books! 

Children learn about the world around them when you talk to them. Honestly, I run out of things to talk about with my three year old and five year old. So when I can't think of a thing to say to my boys, I sing. I don't have a great singing voice, but my children don't care! Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy has some fantastic rhyming and singing videos in a few different languages. I turn to these videos when I need new songs to sing to my boys or in my Storytimes. If you haven't visited the library for a Storytime, you should come! We sing, dance, read picture books, and sometimes we do a craft. We offer bilingual Storytimes too! Spanish and English storytimes at the Belmar and Wheat Ridge Libraries and American Sign Language and English Storytimes at the Belmar Library. 

 Check out some of these music and book suggestions. 

The Wheels on the Bus

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Fun Music

Stinky Cake

Latin Playground by Putumayo

Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy Video "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush"

 

 

Photo Credit: Henti Smith

 

by: 
Karen, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

I threw around all sorts of ideas for a blog this month: second language resources, school topics, etc...  I will definitely post on those themes another time.  Right now, I just want to have fun!  More importantly, I have come across new 2015 titles about monsters that shouldn't be missed! 

Worst in Show by William Bee 

Funny illustrations and a sweet story about celebrating all kinds of winners.

 

Five Stinky Socks by Jim Benton 

A rhyming story about why each of his five socks are so STINKY!

 

The Monsters Under My Bed by Rebecca J. Razo 

Read this bedtime story and learn how to draw monsters!  Monsters won't seem so scary when you draw them as cuddly creatures.  

 

Tickle Monster by Édouard Manceau 

Like 'Go Away Big Green Monster' by Ed Emberley, kids will love deconstructing this monster with tickles!

 

Monstruo, ¡Sé Bueno! by Natalie Marshall 

A simple and silly book in español about how to behave or 'comportarse' in different situations.   

There are so many new books with Monster themes for 2015 that I can't share them all here.  A hint: To find more titles on jeffcolibrary.org, type '(Monster 2015) (Children's Easy Collection)' in the search.  Using the parentheses or () is like doing an 'Advanced Search' without the added step!  

Photo credit: Flickr

by: 
Karen, Kids and Families Outreach Librarian

Having nine nieces and nephews as well as knowing a lot of friends with children, I have been invited to countless babyshowers.  My favorite gift items?  Bath toys!!  You can never go wrong with bathtime books, foam letters or rubber duckies.  Bathtime is a wonderful opportunity to engage your baby, toddler or preschooler in the Five Early Literacy Practices: Talk, Sing, Read, Write and Play.  

On pbs.org, they describe many ways you can encourage language and literacy development during bathtime; from naming body parts to asking your child what are they going to need for bathtime.  There are even suggestions for first graders. My favorite one was to make up stories about the different bath toys.  Once upon a time, there was a Pirate Duck named Orange Beak.  He was on a mission to locate the treasure stolen by Princess Barbie and her Little Pony friends...

Ideas that incorporate the Five Early Literacy Practices into bathtime:

TALK- Use different words to describe how toys move in the water: splash, dip, sink, float, rock, glide, etc...

SING- Sing to baby about body parts (ie. Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes).  Make up or learn new bathtime songs like the one about the turtle, Tiny Tim, on Jbrary (I LOVE JBRARY!!!)

READ- Read bathtime books to your baby or point out words on your child's bubble bath or shampoo bottle

WRITE- Use bathtime crayons to write baby's name on the tile or use foam letters to spell out words

PLAY- Mix in science and math concepts by adding measuring cups and spoons to your bathtub toy collection

Read a good book before or after bathtime:

 

A board book. Great for babies and toddlers!

A cute story about an elephant reluctant to take a bath.

One of my favorite characters, the Pigeon!  Mo Willems' books make me laugh!

Rub-a-dub!  Now get those kiddos into the tub!  And keep logging Summer Reading minutes!

by: 
Barbara, Evergreen Library

STORYTIME: a regular time at which a story is read aloud to children. 

Wanna get jazzed for the day? Just come to a storytime at your local library!

I do a weekly toddler storytime at the Evergreen Library and I look forward to it all week! It is my time to shine...use silly voices, see lots of smiling faces, Shake My Sillies Out, and end with a grand finale of the Hokey Pokey...this is not your mother's storytime! Gone are the days of hushed voices and long stories. Instead today's storytimes are interactive and most of all fun!!! Filled with well illustrated and age appropriate books, songs, fingerplays, felt board and interactive activities there is something for everyone at your libraries weekly storytimes.

According to The Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy (CLeL), ECRR (Every Child Ready to Read) highlights EARLY LITERACY STORYTIMES as one of the crucial activities designed to promote early literacy in young children.

Why it's Important:

Literacy-based storytimes offer libraries a way to be partners in education with parents and caregivers. Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy (CLEL) supports the definition of a literacy-based storytime as one that contains the following components:

  • Parents and caregivers are invited to attend storytimes with their children
  • At least one early literacy practice is highlighted during each storytime
  • Storytime leaders model activities that build early literacy skills
  • Books and activities promote the use of early literacy skills and practices
  • Information about early literacy skills and practices and/or tips for building skills are provided to parents and caregivers during storytime, either verbally, via a handout, or both

At the library we LOVE storytime and we want you and your child to LOVE it too! So, drop on by and give us a try, we can't wait to see you!!! 

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