Friday, May 28, 2010

Looking For a Few Awesome YAs!

Is your child in 7th-12th grade? Talk to them about the possibility of volunteering for us during Summer Reading! One of the reasons our Summer Reading Club is so successful is because of our wonderful teen volunteers. They help sign up children into the Club, hand out halfway point prizes, get supplies ready, and help out at programs. In return they get a head start on their volunteer hours for the school year, a super cute volunteer t-shirt, chances to win prizes with the weekly raffle, and a volunteer pizza party at the end of the Summer Reading Club!

Positions are filling up fast but we're still looking for a couple more volunteers. If your teen is interested, please encourage them to come into the library and pick up an application to fill out and sign up for one of the two remaining training sessions. We'd love for them to be part of the team!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Museum Pass Program

With the beginning of summer around the corner and kids itching for their break, but before you start getting frazzled about what to do with your kids this summer, I thought I'd review how the Museum Pass Program works. See a complete list of participating museums and what each pass is good for here.

- Each family can check out 1 pass per week, and each pass is good for a week.

- Our library is given four passes to each participating museum. As soon as one is checked out, it becomes available again in 7 days.

- Each museum's pass is good for something different. Again, you can look at the passes here.

- You have to get your passes from your 'home library'; the library to which you have a valid library card. You can look at a list of participating libraries here. Don't have a library card? Look here to find out how to get one.

- You need to bring your library card with you to the museum with your pass. To identify you, the last 7 digits of your library card number are on your pass with your name. Therefore, these passes are NOT transferable.

- Passes are taken at time of use, so you can only use it once in a loan period.

- Passes are FREE.

All summer long, these museums passes will be available, so plan ahead and be sure to take advantage of us and all that we can provide!

Friday, May 21, 2010

New Parenting Books

Look for these books in our Parenting Collection.

What to Do When Bad Habits Take Hold

Engaging examples, lively illustrations, and
step-by-step instructions teach essential
habit-busting strategies.
J Parent Collection 155.4 HUE

Samantha Jane's Missing Smile
Gently guides families through this life-changing
event for a child.
J Parent Collection 155.937 KAP

Mookey the Monkey Gets Over Being Teased
Discusses the effects of childhood teasing,
and outlines coping skills for children.
J Parent Collection 302.3 LON

Harry Goes to the Hospital

A story for children about what it's like
to be in the hospital.
J Parent Collection 362.19892 BEN

Discusses the emotional experience of children
who are in foster care, and gives information to
help kids cope.
J Parent Collection 362.733 GIL

Small Steps Forward
Provides help in using games and activities for
your pre-school child with special needs.
J Parent Collection 371.9 NEW

Striped Shirts and Flowered Pants
Offers guidance in helping children cope when a
family member who has Alzheimer's disease.
J Parent Collection 616.831 SCH

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Make Your Own Comic!

Have your children ever been interested in making their own comics but drawing isn't really their thing? Now they can create a simple three panel comic at Make Beliefs Comix!

Kids (or adults!) can choose from 20 different characters with 4 different facial expressions. Then they can make their person bigger or smaller, flip them around so they face the opposite direction, add color to the background, insert up to 25 different objects, give them something to say or think, and then they can print it out or email it to themselves. It's super easy and a lot of fun. While you can't copy and paste your creation into a Word document, I printed out the one I made and scanned it so you can see what it looks like. Have fun using your imagination and creating something!

For kids who would prefer drawing their own, check out James Sturm's book, Adventures in Cartooning the next time you're in the library. This great book teaches kids how to make their own comics through a story told in graphic novel form. It's perfect for kids who want to get started drawing their own but don't know where to begin.

Other books that are helpful are:
I Love to Draw Cartoons by Jennifer Lipsey

While comics are great to read, it's fun to be able to create your own! Father's Day is coming up-why not have your children create a comic strip for Dad telling him how super he is?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Battling Over Books!

Last Friday night, May 7, the library was abuzz with excitement, anticipation and more than a few nerves as teams of 4th and 5th graders competed in DPPL's annual Battle of the Books (or, as one 4th grader referred to it, "that book fight thing."

Each team of four students competed to correctly answer questions about the eight books selected for this year's program (the answer to each question was the title of one of the books). Competition was stiff to say the least, but everyone had a grand time judging from the noise level! Congratulations to the two teams who tied for first place!

The previous Friday night, April 30, saw teams of 6th - 8th graders competing, many in full team color regalia. Here are the three teams who tied for first place that night. (Watch the slide showing off all participants on our Storytimes & Programs page!)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Time Has Come

With all of the talk around town on 'greening' up our area, take time this weekend to visit the many garage sales in the Community Wide Garage Sale. This weekend, Friday - Sunday (May 14 - 16), many homes in zip code 60016 will be participating in the garage sale, and for those in zip code 60018, it will be next weekend (May 21 - 23).

This weekend's weather looks to be mild, so get out there and have some fun walking around. Take your kids to pick out their 'new' toys and games from someone's outgrown items. Is there a child soon to be arriving? Look for those expensive baby items that might be able to be reused from someone else.

Looking for a map of the garage sales? Look no further than the City of Des Plaines webpage. The map will be up the Thursday before the weekend of the sale.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Realistic Fiction for Children

I love to read realistic fiction. I enjoy this type of fiction because it has a plot, characters, and settings that can be found in real life, but the story is fiction. It could be historical or contemporary, but a well written book makes an important statement about life. Good realistic stories explore the development of characters in a specific situation. They may not have a great conclusion, but they offer enough insight within the book so that the sensitive, thoughtful reader will draw their own conclusion. There are no fairy godmothers in realistic stories.

I think the fact that children can learn from books about the diversity of life is one of their miracles. There are so many wonderful realistic fiction books for children. I chose a few old titles to share with you!

Did You Today, Charley, by Rebecca Caudill
The honor of carrying the flag of the Little School goes to the boys or girls who has been ‘specially good that day’. Charley is sure from the beginning of his school career that he will carry the flag, it is many a day before he can answer “Yes” when his family asks, ‘Did you carry the flag carry the flag today, Charley?’

Ellen Tebbits, by Beverly Cleary
Third grader Ellen takes dancing lessons, wears braces on her teeth, and many a best friend. Ellen’s adventure is just as hilarious as the other Cleary’s Henry books, as American as supermarkets and completely true to children’s nature.

Tales of Fourth Grade Nothing, by Judy Blume
The story focuses on a fourth-grader named Peter and his annoying brother Farley, and Peter’s pet turtle. Farley hates the sound of his name, and prefers Fudge for any and all occasions. Peter’s friends Jimmy and Sheila are part of Peter’s eventful everyday life.

From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil Frankweiler, by E. L. Konigsburg
Story of Claudia Kincaid and her brother Jamie told by Mrs. Frankweiler. Claudia was not running away from home permanently; she planned to return home “after everyone had learned a lesson on Claudia appreciation”. But long after “everyone” had learned their lesson, Claudia and her brother were still hiding out in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

How Many Miles to Babylon, by Paula Fox
Nine year old James lives with his three aunts because his mother is in the hospital, his father has decamped. He likes to imagine his mother is an African princess, and he is a son of the princess. Trapped by bullies James was held captive in a deserted Coney Island funhouse. The mood and the suspense are dramatic.

Hoot, by Carl Hiassen
Middle school student Roy just moved to Florida. Being a new kid on the block, Roy becomes a victim of a school bully. Roy makes friends with the homeless boy who is on an ecological mission to protect rare and endangered burrowing owls.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Recent Children's Drug Re-calls

Looking for more information on which batches of Children's Tylenol, Children's Motrin, Children's Benadryl, or Children's Zyrtec were recalled? Look here for more information straight from the source.

In general, products that are recalled can be found on the FDA's website on drug and food recalls here.

As always, if you have any questions, you can come into the library and ask at the desk.