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!

Storyteller Linda Gorham Is Coming Our Way!

It isn’t every day you have the chance to see an award-winning storyteller perform. However, on July 20 and 21, your family will have just that opportunity! DBRL is excited to welcome Photo of Linda GorhamLinda Gorham, a talented storyteller who is the recipient of the Distinguished National Service Award from the National Storytelling Network for 2016.

Linda’s style of storytelling is unlike anything you have seen before; it’s a wonderful combination of humor, surprising plot twists and sophisticated attitude. Her stories are not only riveting to watch but also well-researched and updated for today’s audiences.

Linda will perform at all three library branches so that everyone can experience the fun. These shows are for all families, though we recommend everyone be four years or older. Registration isn’t required.

Southern Boone County Public Library: Wednesday, July 20 › 10-10:45 a.m.

Callaway County Public Library: Wednesday, July 20 › 2-2:45 p.m. Friends Room

Columbia Public Library: Thursday, July 21 › 9:30-10 a.m. or 2-2:30 p.m. or 6:30-7:15 p.m. Children’s Program Room

Photo credit: Gorham1.jpg via lindagorham.com

Visit Your Playgrounds Challenge

Photo of children in a yellow slideSince our Summer Reading theme this year is “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read!” we have been encouraging youth and adults alike to be physically active this summer. One great budget-friendly way to be active while having a blast is to go to the park. Did you know that there are over 40 parks with playgrounds in the Columbia park system?

To get more kids and parents out to Columbia’s parks, Columbia Parks and Recreation has initiated a “Visit Your Playgrounds Challenge.” To complete this challenge, your kids need to visit ten or more different parks in Columbia, filling in a tracking sheet as they go. This sheet can be found in the “Visit Your Park Playgrounds Challenge” form and can also be picked up at the Parks and Recreation office. The challenge goes from Memorial Day to Labor day 2016 (May 30 to September 5, 2016). You can find Columbia’s park locations in the Parks and Facility Guide. Continue reading

July Programs Sneak Peek

Summer Reading is still going strong as we hit July running, and it’s not too late to be a reading racer! We are still taking registrations for readers of all ages. And starting July 5th, those who have reached their Summer Reading goals can run to the library to claim their free book and chance to win other awesome prizes.

Be sure to check out these great July programs, and look ahead to the rest of the summer for even more winning events at your local branch.

Photograph of Marty HahneMarty Hahne: The Reading Magician

Friday, July 1 › 9:30-10:15 a.m. or 1:30-2:15 p.m. or 3-3:45 p.m. Columbia Public Library, Children’s Program Room

Enjoy “Magic in Motion,” a program of non-stop fun with magic, comedy and lots of audience participation. Casey the rabbit will make a surprise appearance! Families, ages 5 and older.

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Family Games for Road Trips

Car TripOh, summer car trips. They’re those wonderful times when the whole family piles into a vehicle, heading off on a grand adventure! While the travel destination is usually exciting, the long hours in the car can become dull and monotonous. Want to spice up your family car trip? Here are some great games and ideas to make your next car trip journey just as fun as the destination.

  • Create a binder of activity sheets for each kiddo. Include road sign bingo, tick-tac-toe, stickers and coloring sheets. You can find TONS of free road trip printables online.
  • Choose a color or an object and then count them until you find 100 of that item. (Some examples include: American flags, statues, churches, red cars, etc.)
  • Create a fun interactive map for kids to keep track of the journey. Draw pictures of simple landmarks that are along the way. A homemade map is easy for kids to follow and gives them a clearer picture of how much farther there is to go.
  • Create a scavenger hunt. Give each child a list of items to watch for while driving.
  • Create a simple felt board memory game. Here is a link for a great tutorial.

Don’t forget the simple joy of reading out loud as a family. Stop by one of our library branches before you head out to pick up books or audiobooks for your trip! Just make sure that if you read print books, your reader isn’t prone to car sickness. The Harry Potter series, the Little House on the Prairie series and the Lord of the Rings series are great for family car trips. If you’ve already read those, check out these great family read aloud ideas.