2016 Book Champions!

Award Images

With the changing of the seasons we have a new group of award nominees in the children’s sections of our libraries, all with shiny new orange stickers and ready for Summer Reading! This might leave you wondering about the 2015-16 award nominees with the purple stickers. Where did they go? Which books won? Have no fear! We have several copies of each title; they just been moved to their permanent homes in the regular stacks. If you are interested in which 2015-16 nominees won, read on!

Missouri Building Block: Naked!” written by Michael Ian Black and illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.
This a hilarious story is about a youngster who discovers the only thing more fun than running around wearing nothing is running around wearing nothing but a cape.

Show Me Readers Award: Trouper” by Meg Kearney, illustrated by E.B. Lewis.
A three-legged dog remembers his time as a stray before he was adopted. Continue reading

Thank You, Elephant and Piggie

"The Thank You Book" book coverIt is a sad day indeed when a favorite author ends a very popular series. Mo Willems published the first Elephant and Piggie book in 2007. In nine years he has created 25 books with favorites such as “There is a Bird on Your Head” and “Are You Ready to Play Outside?“, both of which won the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award. Even though Piggie and Elephant will no longer star in their own books, their faces will still be around in a new series called Elephant & Piggie like Reading! While these books will not be related to the Elephant and Piggie series, Gerald and Piggie will give them their stamp of approval!

On May 3, 2016, the 25th book in the series, “The Thank You Book,” was released. In “The Thank You Book,” Piggie wants to thank everyone who has made their books possible, but Gerald the Elephant is afraid Piggie will miss someone. Find out if Piggie forgets to thank anyone by checking out “The Thank You Book” from any of our branches.

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Gardening for Kids

Photograph of girl gardeningDid you know that you can grow celery, radishes and even pineapple in your own kitchen? As we wrap up spring and dive into summer, you might be looking for fun and educational activities to keep those young minds engaged. As the old adage goes “Make hay while the sun shines!” Or, in our case, make celery!

Worried about your green thumb? Don’t be. Gardening can be as simple as planting the tops or bottoms of plants in a small container and watching the magic happen. Gardening is a great way for children and adults to come together and learn something new. Here are some simple ways you can get the plants rolling.

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Books We Love: If I Had a Gryphon

"If I Had a Gryphon" book coverOne new book that has recently caught my eye is “If I Had a Gryphon,” written by Vikki Vansickle and illustrated by Cale Atkinson. After reading just a few pages, I was already in love with both the text and the illustrations.

If I Had a Gryphon” is a story about a girl who wants an exciting pet instead of a boring old hamster, but taking care of magical beasts proves to be more challenging than she originally thought. The book is full of little bits of whimsy; for example, the title pages share that, “The artwork in this book was rendered in Photoshop, fairy dust and phoenix ash.” The illustrations are eye-catching and highly detailed, telling their own stories. This, combined with the humorous text that rhymes without being too obvious, makes the story a joy to read. I’m already on the hunt for a way to use this in a story time, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this team produces another book for me to love.

Are You Ready for a Picnic?

Spring is such a wonderful time of year for a picnic in the park. Here are some fun ideas to try on your next picnic adventure!

Start out your picnic with some rhymes:

Photograph of teddy bears on a picnicWe’re Going on a Picnic

We’re going on a picnic.
Gonna pack a lunch.
What should we get to munch munch munch?
(Ask kids to name some yummy foods for a picnic, and then chant the song again.)

Carrots, Peas and Broccoli

Carrots, peas and broccoli,
Vegetables are good for me.
For my snack and in my lunch,
Veggie sticks are great to munch.
Carrots, peas and broccoli,
Vegetables are good for me

Next, make some picnic snacks:

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