Archive for the ‘Book Talks’ Category

Dig into Summer Time Read Alouds

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Summer time is a great chance to read aloud from a chapter book with your child! Why read chapter books together?

  • Building Memory: When you break up a story over subsequent sittings, your child must hold the story in his mind and add to it in sections. This will help him build memory skills and develop the attention span he’ll need when he is reading longer books on his own.
  • Complex Stories: A longer story is often a more complex story with more vibrant characters and more detail about the setting or more depth to the action. Your child may enjoy delving more deeply into a book and it is something you can share with her.
  • Life Lessons: As your child matures as a reader, the themes he is reading about will mature also. When you start into a book together you experience the lessons in the book together, as well. How better to deal with more mature topics like bullying, death or bad guys than in an age appropriate book that allows you to stop the narrative and talk about these themes and your family’s values. Try to relate both happy and difficult experiences to your child’s own life. She’ll be developing empathy skills and understanding that the book she is reading represents real emotions and real experiences (even in a fantastical setting) that she also may experience in real life.
  • Vocabulary: Bigger books have more words and more words means more vocabulary! Stop when you hit a difficult word and explain it to your child.  Give words context–a cave is simply a hole in a hillside, but if you mention that caves are often dark and wet and may harbor bears then the word is given some real contextual meaning which may help the story make more sense. If you are stumped too, you now have a perfect reason to demonstrate how a dictionary works–learn something together!
  • Time Fillers: Bring your book with you to the beach, doctor’s visits or on long car rides.  A fifteen minute lull in your day is the perfect reason to read “just one more chapter.”

Can’t wait to dig into read alouds?  We have some great suggestions for books you and your child are bound to love.

Blast Off! Books about Space

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

Space is all over the news these days, keep your young scientist filled with facts with these topical books!

Questions about meteors, like the one that lit up the sky over Russia last week? Read up on when a meteor becomes a meteorite and what happens once it hits the Earth…

Those are the facts, but what about the fun? Try these fictional accounts of meteors…

Curious about life in space? Who got there first? What do astronauts eats and more importantly–where do they go to the bathroom?!

If you have a kid aged 8-11 who is crazy about space, you won’t want to miss March’s You Wouldn’t Want to Be…book club.

This book club explores the gritty side of history with crafts, snacks and activities. In March we’ll be reading You Wouldn’t Want to be on Apollo 13! by Ian Graham

Ever wanted to take a tour of the International Space Station? Here is your chance!

Follow former commander Sunita Williams of NASA as she take you on a behind-the-scenes tour of humankind’s tiny home away from home.

Meet Ashley Bryan–An Author and Illustrator whom we Love!

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

Are you familiar with Ashley Bryan? Known for his children’s books full of poetry, prose and folk tales and illustrated with his colorful paintings, woodcuts and collages, Ashley Bryan has been delighting children and adults for decades. In 2012 he was awarded the Coretta Scott King — Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Reserve a title today and enjoy these stories with the children you love. Interested in learning more about this author/illustrator? Visit Reading Rockets to hear an interview with Mr. Bryan about his life and work.

If you enjoy viewing and discussing picture books, considering attending our new discussion group! Picture books are not just for children anymore! Join other children’s literature enthusiasts in discussing new and notable books for children. Parents, teachers, librarians, caregivers and anyone interested are welcome to join the discussion.

Can you hear that?

Friday, April 8th, 2011


April is National Poetry Month! Poetry is fun to read and fun to write, but to really enjoy poetry many feel it must be HEARD. Listening to poems can help kids develop important literacy skills like phonological awareness, the ability to hear and play with smaller sounds in words, and vocabulary, or knowing the names of things. Here are a few books that are not only beautiful to look at, but also come with CDs so that the poems come alive at home, in the car–anywhere you are!

Author of Bridge to Terabithia writes the books SHE wants to read.

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Katherine Paterson has been writing books since she was a little girl growing up in Shanghai, but not everyone thought she would make it as an award-winning author. What is her secret? She writes what she wants to read….

Stop by the Youth Department to read the latest issue of The National Voice for Creative Kids, in which kid journalist Hayley Schroeder writes about Katherine and how she became the author of such beloved books as Bridge to Terabithia, Jacob Have I Loved and The Great Gilly Hopkins and many more or read the article online here!

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells.” -Dr. Seuss

Today is the birthday of Theodor Geisel, better know to millions of kids of all ages as Dr. Seuss! In his honor, people all over the country will celebrate by reading together during the Dr.Seuss kick-off day of Read Across America. First Lady Michelle Obama will lead a star-studded cast of readers as everyone gets ready to grab a hat and read with the cat.

You can join in the fun! No need to travel to Washington, D.C. or even to Whoville, our friends at Random House have created a fun site with Dr. Seuss activity pages and coloring sheets and games! Don’t Delay! Explore Seussville today!


From your home computer, check out & download the eAudiobook, The Cat in the Hat and Other Favorites. Read by John Cleese, Kelsey Grammer, John Lithgow and others, nine Dr. Seuss tales come alive!

Turn out the lights and read What Was I Scared Of?, a not-so-spooky tale by Dr. Seuss printed in glow-in-the-dark ink!

Un Pez, dos Peces! Dr. Seuss in Spanish! Stop in for fun in Spanish with us and our friends pez rojo and pez azul!

Have a Seuss-tastic day!

Ready to Erupt!

Friday, May 8th, 2009

Into the Volcano by Don Wood

What would you say if you were visiting your aunt on an island that has an active volcano ? Me? I’d say: “HELP!” Sumo and Duffy ‘s introduction to their mother’s family is cut short when the volcano’s eruption forces them to go on a dangerous journey-into the volcano itself-where they learn the real reason for their visit.

Already read this one?  Try The Volcano Goddess Will See You Now by Dan Greenburg.

For more book suggestions, check out Miss Susan’s newest picks!