Beat the Heat

Photo of children playing in waterWow! The summer heat is already in full swing, and August is promising to be even hotter! One way that I like to beat the heat is to face it head on by going outside and splashing around. You can do this too by going to the beach or the pool to catch some waves, or you can even turn to your own yard! Here are some ideas that will help you cool off at home.

  • Freeze toys in ice cubes — Place small toys like plastic cars or bugs into your ice cube tray. Fill the tray with water, and freeze it overnight. Take the ice cubes outside, and see who can melt theirs the quickest.
  • Ice cube painting — Fill an ice cube try with food coloring and water. (This is a great time to talk about color mixing.) Put plastic wrap over the tray and add craft sticks or toothpicks to each cube. (This is optional, but it will make a great handle for painting.) When the cubes are solid, use them to paint on paper or fabric.
  • Target practice — Draw a target on the sidewalk with chalk. Wet down a few sponges, and toss them into the target!

What would summer fun be without a soundtrack? Personally, I stay cool by listening to the Beach Boys, which you can find on Hoopla or on CD at your local branch. Or you can get really creative and make your own summertime playlist on Freegal.
Remember to wear sunscreen and drink lots of water!

Summer Reading Book Lists

Summer Reading LogoDid you know that we’ve compiled book lists specifically about our Summer Reading theme, “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read”? These home run reads are all about movement, sports and games. We have print copies of the book lists at our library branches, but you can also access them online!

 

On Your Mark, Get Set, Games!

This year’s Summer Reading theme “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read” could not have been planned for a better year. The 2016 Rio Olympic Games are gearing up and will start Photograph of Mancalain August! There are more than 40 games during the Summer Olympics. Many of the games – such as rugby, water polo, and Taekwondo – originated in other countries. In the spirit of this year’s Summer Reading theme and the Olympics, here are some world games to teach and play with your child.

With an unknown origin, Mancala can be traced back to ancient Egypt. Mancala is a two-player strategy game where the goal is to capture the most pieces in your own storage area. A homemade Mancala board is very easy to make with simple household items! Click here to learn how to make your own board and the rules of the game. Continue reading

Letter Matching Game

ABC rocksI recently discovered a simple and fun preschool letter matching game.The more I thought about the game and about the different ways you could play it, the more I liked it. It’s great for quiet play time, letter recognition practice and sensory play.

The original game calls for an adult to write letters on rocks with a marker, then write the same letters (either all capital or all lowercase) on the inside of a muffin liner, then place the liner in a cupcake pan. You let a child (who is old enough to not chew the rocks) match the letters and place the rocks in the tin. Continue reading

Summer Reading 2016

Summer Reading ImageSummer is right around the corner, and it’s the perfect time to get your kids engaged with some great summer reads. Research proves that children who don’t read during the summer can lose up to three months of reading progress. Combat this brain drain by signing up for the library’s Summer Reading program! This year’s Summer Reading theme is “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read!” This program is free, and we have versions for all ages. You can sign up at your library or at a bookmobile stop. Registration for all ages begins on June 1.