Buzz, Hiss, Moo, Rawr! Turning Sounds Into Words

Moo! by David LaRochelleWhat sound does a cow make? Moo! What sound does a chicken make? Bawk, bawk, bawk or cluck, cluck cluck! Many very young children are well aware that a tiger says “RAWR!” Spend a day in the life of a library worker at the Children’s Services desk in the Columbia Public Library and you will hear an ongoing stream of “RAWRs” from the mouths of little ones as they enter the area and spy “Starry the Tiger.” The words and phrases that imitate the sounds we hear are onomatopoeias. Continue reading

Your Library: The Perfect Staycation Destination

Building block creationWhile the schools are closed and kids are home, enjoy a staycation here in the Mid-Missouri area this spring break. Visit one of your local Daniel Boone Regional Library branches to participate in some of these great programs.

Block Party

Playing with blocks develops a child’s math, language, social and science skills, as well as being lots of fun! Come to our block party to build, talk, explore and create together. Families, ages 2-6.

Columbia Public Library, Children’s Program Room
Monday, March 23 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Messy Time

Dive in with your child for sloppy fun with play dough, paint, cereal and all sorts of edibles. You’ll also get a copy of our “Recipes for Fun” booklet. Dress for a mess and bring a towel. Ages 1-5.

Callaway County Public Library
Monday, March 23 10-11 a.m. Continue reading

Calm Down Bottles

Sometimes you just need a moment to calm down. Everyone does! Especially overstimulated, tired, cranky, frustrated, (insert your own adjective) children who can’t effectively communicate their emotions without resorting to a meltdown. I might just have one such toddler at home, who may or may not have had a meltdown just this morning. Enter the “calm down bottle” — our family’s newest addition to the emotional toolbox.

I ran across the calm down bottle while browsing toddler activity ideas on Pinterest. It can be used as an alternative to “time out” or just as a way to transition to a more relaxed state when the child gets too hyper. Our bottle is particularly useful near bedtime, when being tired makes it hard for our daughter to do anything without dramatic flair or tears. While I originally thought it looked like a cool bottle with sparkles that might catch her attention, I found it also serves a deeper purpose. (Disclaimer: I am not a professional and I’m interpreting what I read here, so it might be oversimplified.) Apparently, holding something with both hands at the midline can help children (and adults!) focus and reorganize their thoughts. It can help settle scattered thoughts by activating both hemispheres of the brain and bring a sense of calm. And I just thought it was pretty! Who knew? Here are some pictures of a Calm Down Bottle in action. Ready to make your own? Check out the directions below.

Calm Down Bottle Collage

You will need: Continue reading

Let Your Imagination Loose With Dr. Seuss

What Pet Should I Get?Dr. Seuss (also known as Theodor Seuss Geisel or Theo LeSieg) was born on March 2. Not only is Dr. Seuss’ birthday celebrated on the 2nd, but the National Education Association celebrates Read Across America Day every year on or near that same date. (This year’s event is actually on March 2.) In case you are not familiar with the whimsical writings of Dr. Seuss, try “Green Eggs and Ham” or “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.” Kids love the playful rhymes and curious creatures of Seuss’ imagination.

And we have even more reason to be excited about Dr Seuss at the moment, as a new original Seuss book was just announced! Seuss’ widow found a new original manuscript while cleaning his office, and the book is to be published this summer. “What Pet Should I Get?” is about a near universal childhood theme – choosing a pet. The publisher estimates that the recently discovered manuscript was written between 1958 and 1962, as it features the same siblings we know from “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.” And since so many Seuss books show his curious creations, we’re excited to see what creative pets he imagined. Read and re-read Seuss classics now, and join us in anticipating a new release in 2015!

Rhyme Time: Winter

Family time in snowWhile playing outside in the snow may be fun, some days it’s just too cold to go outside! Instead, warm yourself and your family by the fire and learn these winter rhymes for a fun interactive learning experience. Corresponding actions, if any, are in parentheses.

Five Little Snowmen
Five little snowmen all in a row
(Hold up five fingers.)
Each with a hat
(Pat the top of your head.)
And a big red bow.
(Pull at your neck as if you are fixing a bow tie.)
Out came the sun
(Make your arms form big circle over your head.)
And it stayed all day.
(Lean to the left.)
And one of those snowmen melted away!
(Make a melting motion with your arms and body.)
Repeat with four, three, two, and one. Continue reading