About Hilary

Loves “I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More!” by Karen Beaumont because it celebrates a messy but colorful life.

Missouri Building Blocks 2014: Moo!

Illustration from the picture book, Moo!It’s hard to express how much I love, love, LOVE “Moo!” by David LaRochelle! But I will try.

1. I love a good laugh, and reading “Moo!” will make your whole crew chuckle. If you have a 3-year-old, there might even be floor rolling involved. Who can ignore the hilarity of a cow who “borrows” a car?

2. I adore how LaRochelle brilliantly showcases the art of emotional expression. Believe it or not you can tell a whole adventure using only one word: Moo-Moo? Moo! I find the kiddos really get into this aspect of the book if you practice being sad cows, happy cows and excited cows before you launch into the more complicated moos explored in the book.

3. I dance with excitement when a book leads to more fun! “Moo!” naturally launches into creative and educational activities. Check out LaRochelle’s website for handy activity guides, puppet patterns and more. Your friendly state librarians have also gathered ideas on the MLA award page and Pinterest board. Personally, I’m dying to write “Baa!” – the sequel to “Moo!”

Still skeptical? Grab a copy and see for yourself. And remember to help your child vote for his or her favorite Missouri Building Block Picture Book after you’ve read at least five titles.

Leaf Through a Tree Book

Trees work poster from the Missouri Department of ConservationI have always wanted to be that kid who could name every tree along the trail, and during this summer of science, I’m taking up the challenge. If you and your brood are interested in exploring trees and the great outdoors, too, try these simple activities:

  • Check out out and use tree identification books.
  • Create a leaf window hanging

Leaves come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. Children can improve their observation skills and learn to identify leaves while doing this art project. Continue reading

Moving and Grooving

photo by Miika Silfverberg via flickr

photo by Miika Silfverberg

Not only is music fun to listen to, it’s fun to create! Music helps children develop their listening skills and is an important element of early literacy. So, enjoy some musical activities with your crew.

Freeze Dance

Play some of your family’s favorite tunes, and dance to your heart’s content. Then, when  least expected, yell “freeze!” and stop the music. See what funny positions you all wind up in. How long can you hold them? For some retro fun, play the 1958 tune “The Freeze” by Tony and Joe.

Music Mania!

Bring out a variety of songs with a variety of tempos. Ask your kids to dance accordingly, encouraging them to speed up if the music is fast and take it easy when the beat slows down. Join in the fun, setting an example, for instance slowly sliding during a ballad or doing jumping jacks while a dance song plays. See who can come up with the most interesting move. Continue reading

Library on the Go

This summer you are likely to see us out and about sharing library information and services at community gatherings. On June 14 stop by to say hi at either one of these events.

Safe Kids Discovery Day from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. is the University of Missouri Children’s Hospital’s carnival-style safety event. Free activities include:Safe Kids Columbia logo

  • Exploring a fire truck.
  • Bicycle helmet fittings.
  • Local stage entertainment.
  • Free lunch.
  • Hourly prizes and booth giveaways.
  • Summer Reading sign-ups.

Located at Women’s and Children’s Hospital in the Pavilion Parking Lot, 404 Keene Street, Columbia. See you there!

Hello, Baby Expo from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Expo Center, 2200 Interstate 70.

At the Hello, Baby Expo you can: Continue reading

Every Scientist Needs a Lab Coat

It’s a summer of science at your library, so pull out your safety goggles, test tubes, skeleton models, microscopes, magnifying glasses and other scientific gear. Make lab coats using the following instructions, and create your own mad scientist names.

picture of a lab coatWhat you need:

  • white t-shirt, prewashed
  • cardboard
  • fabric markers
  • yardstick
  • pocket template, copied at whatever size you wish

Continue reading