Thursday, March 29, 2012

Ecstatic For Easter: Favorite Easter Story (Thomas and Friends Easter Engines)

Easter Engines (Thomas and Friends series)
Easy Reader
E Thomas
Publication Date: 2012

Sir Topham Hatt sends Thomas on an egg-cellent mission in this new addition to the train-mendously popular Thomas and Friends series.

Thomas happily chugs on to McColl's Farm to pick up a gigantic Easter egg for the Easter parade, but is running late due to his fragile cargo and some quacky little friends.

Will nervous Thomas make it in time to lead the Easter parade?

Read this syrupy sweet Easter story whose surprise ending will make children "hop" for joy!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

There's a Ton of Crafting Going On! See the Fun You Can Have At Our Open Crafts Program Through March 29th!

There's still plenty of time to come and "get crafty with it" at the library! The following are a few photos of some very crafty kids making fluttering butterflies, beaded bracelets and necklaces, plastic cup frogs, creeping caterpillars, colorful egg collages and so much more!

Come on down to the library today, tomorrow, and Thursday from 11 to 2 pm to make these magical crafts on your spring break.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Books and Babies: Best Authors for Babies

What should I read to my baby?

This is one of the most common questions discussed at Youth Services Reference Desks across the country.

Parents come in frazzled and worried about what types of books they should read, the kinds of stories their babies will enjoy, and how long the tales should be. 

The following list offers a good foundation of quality children's authors whose books are perfect for infants: 

  • Karen Katz (My personal favorite is Counting Kisses
  • Byron Barton 
  • Donald Crews
  • Rachel Isadora (I See or I Hear
  • Sandra Boynton (Absolutely any of her stories) 
  • Todd Parr 
  • Keith Baker (Especially the book Little Green
    Things to Remember When Choosing Books and Reading to Babies

    • Are the pictures large, uncluttered, colorful, and contain short simple sentences?

    If your answer is yes to all of this criteria then you have found the perfect baby book! 

    The pictures need to be large enough to be seen by the baby because his or her eye muscles have not developed enough to view small, insignificant illustrations. 

    Busy, overly crowded pictures can be overwhelming to your child.

    If you notice your little one is becoming fussy or looks like they may want to cry over the image, it is best to save this book for when they are older.

     Bright colors are not only happy and joyful to infants, but they also appeal to their senses. 

    One tip I would suggest is to make sure that there are not too many colors within the pictures which may be unsettling to such young children. 

    Make sure that the sentences are simple and brief due to babies short attention spans.

    You may notice that within just a few minutes of reading your baby may begin to become antsy and want to move around. This is perfectly fine.

    Even if a child is not actually looking at the book while you are reading it does not necessarily mean that they are not paying attention to the story. 

    Babies are taking in quite a large amount of information and can learn at very small ages. 

    • Do you enjoy reading the story? 

    This is a critical consideration that needs to be taken into account when choosing children's literature.

    If you do not like the book or its imagery, you will not give the book the justice it deserves such as hurriedly reading it to the child or reading it without any emotion. 

    • Is the tone of your voice pleasant and animated or monotone and stale? 

    One issue that many new parents face is reading the story as if they are reading to themselves. 

    The words often come out monotonous,  dry, and boring to a young child who enjoys action, silly sounds, and higher-pitched voices. 

    Many experts suggest that you speak "motherese". 

    This term denotes the high-pitched sing-song voice which many people use when speaking with babies.

     Infants find "motherese" soothing and loving. 

    This type of speech can easily be incorporated into daily reading by the raising and lowering of your vocal pitch, giving characters silly voices, making sounds for animals in the story such as moos or oinks, and even providing motion such as gently rocking your baby back and forth if the story talks about gentle breezes in the springtime, etc. 

    • Do you include props such as puppets or stuffed animals, songs, fingerplays, games, and nursery rhymes into your reading experiences?

    You can easily make puppets out of old socks, paper bags, or paper shapes. 

    Make sure any of the items you use to decorate your creations are non-toxic, well-secured through sewing or glue, and not so small that they may be a potential choking hazard. 

    Simple songs such as "This Old Man" are sweet and provide a balance of music and sound which enhances the storytime and language connection. 

    If you do not like singing, you may use pre-recorded music. 

    Just make sure that the music is not too loud or contains booming or deep bass sounds which can be frightening to young babies. 

    Classical music can be used for bedtime and soft, perky, instrumentals or child-friendly folk music is great for storytime dances.

     Fingerplays such as Grandma's Glasses pertain to movements though the use of the hands, arms, and sometimes other parts of body. 

    Fingerplays communicate that the body and language both have an impact on communication to the child. 

    Games such as pat-a-cake or peek-a-boo are ways to encourage early fine (use of hands, etc.)  and gross motor skills (includes hopping, jumping). 

    You can also include lap bounces which involve parent and child interaction through bodily movement. 

    Nursery rhymes such as Hey Diddle Diddle are wonderful due to their use of short phrases and sounds which sound melodic and calming to young children. 

    Remember to always repeat songs, fingerplays, nursery rhymes, and games in order to give your child  a sense of routine. 

    Make sure to repeat this every storytime. 

    A suggestion would be to sing an opening song every time you read a story, repeat a familiar fingerplay, and sing an ending song to signify the end of storytime. 

    • Are you making sure that siblings are part of the storyime experience? 

    The addition of a new baby or infant is often quite a transition for your older child. 

    Let them relish the joy of being a big brother or sister by joining in during storytime. 

    While they may be too young to read the story they can certainly help sing songs or manipulate a puppet during storytime reading. 

    I hope these tips are helpful in making your next baby storytime the best experience possible!

    P is for Poetry: Perfect Poetry Picks for National Poetry Month

    It's time to get ready for National Poetry Month which begins April 1st!

    Reading poetry to children is a great way to introduce them to the use of language to describe feelings, places, and things.

    Sadly, this book form is generally shelved away and forgotten in the stacks until it becomes required reading for a school English project.

    That's where the fun part comes in!

    Share this poetic literature with your child and add a new and  exciting genre to their repertoire.

    The perfect way to do this would be by reading a poem a day with your child during National Poetry Month (April).

    There are many types of poetry available: humorous such as those authored by Shel Silverstein or Jack Prelutsky) to reflective. 

    Your child will definitely enjoy the rhyming text and become more aware of the artistic elements and descriptive use of adjectives in the written word. 

    Below you will  find  my "Perfect Poetry Picks for National Poetry Month."

    Peaceful Pieces: Poems and Quilts About Peace by Anna Grossnickle Hines
    Juvenile Non-fiction
    J 811.54 Hin
    Publication Date: 2011

    This stunning book of poems is a triumphant compilation on the subject of peace.

    Most impressive are the painstakingly-stitched quilt illustrations which add a luminous quality to the moving words penned by Ms. Hines.

    The lovely applique work increases the beauty of the intricate designs that were created through the use of light, dark, and patterned fabrics.

     Two standout poems include the intense Calming the Busy Brain and the heartbreaking An Invitation.

    Both of these poems showcase the need to relinquish our fears and emotions in order to invite peace within our hearts.

    This earth-shattering collection should be read during a time of reflection when the reader can devote ample time to ponder the immensity of the subject.

    Bookspeak: Poems about Books by Laurie Purdie Salas 
    Picture Book (New Picture Books)
    JE Salas
    Publication Date: 2011

    Bibliophiles rejoice!

    The joys of a good book jump off the pages of this volume dedicated to verse about beloved books.

    Purdie adds her own special touch of whimsy by incorporating subtle, yet intricate takes on such mundane subjects such as the lowly index in her educational and endearing poem, Index and a hysterical  ode to the middle of a book's inferiority complex in The Middle's Lament: A Poem for Three Voices.

    The complexity and character which are shown in the author's radiant use of language can only be influenced by her love of the written word.

    More books such as these are needed to help advocate the pleasure of reading a traditional paged book in this ever increasing digital world.

    A Stick Is An Excellent Thing: Poems Celebrating Outdoor Play by Marilyn Singer
    Juvenile Non-fiction (New Juvenile Non-fiction Books)
    J 811 Sin
    Publication Date: 2012

    You'll be ready to dance in the sunlight and enjoy the curiosities of the outdoors after reading this book!

    Author Marilyn Singer invites readers to remember the fun they had playing in the "great outdoors" during this festive, bouncy book of outdoor poems.

    Bubbles gently flutter by during a "bubble match" between a brother and sister in the poem, Bubbles, and the wonders of catching fireflies on a sultry summer night is captured in Catching Fireflies.

    This crisp and energetic poetry collection will bring out the inner child in all of us and will most assuredly become a beloved favorite.

     Click on the National Poetry Month Badge on the right-hand side of this page for more information about National Poetry Month from! 

    Saturday, March 24, 2012

    There Will Be No Storytimes Next Week, But Plenty of Crafts and Activities! Stop on By for Our Open Crafts Program March 26-29 from 11-2 PM and Spring Break Bingo March 27 at 3:30 PM!

    We're taking a break from storytime programs during Spring Break week, but that doesn't mean that there aren't plenty of interesting things to do at the library!

    You'll be able to make many different crafts during our Open Crafts Program running from March 26th to 29th from 11-2 pm.

    The Program Room will be arranged in craft stations which allow many children to work on a variety of projects including a superhero pig and fluffy cotton-tail bunny.

    Make sure to bring all your friends down to this no registration required crafting extravaganza that will make Spring Break really rock!

    Be sure to also come to our family-friendly Spring Break Bingo program on Tuesday, March 27th at 3:30 pm to win totally terrific prizes. No registration is required for this program too!

    Both of these programs are perfect for children of all ages.

    Friday, March 23, 2012

    Something New: Miss Jennifer's Favorite New Picture Books

    Can you think of anything more wonderful then opening up a sparkling new picture book which contains a precious story complete with cherubic-faced characters and magical text?

    I certainly can't! Be sure to take a peek at our "New Picture Books section" next to the concept books (books which contain stories that teach a lesson such as the alphabet, colors or numbers) in the Youth Services area.

    Here you will find all of the library's newly acquired picture books.

    While browsing these shelves you will find a large variety of topics ranging from princesses to dinosaurs that will suit all your little ones literary needs.

    On your next trip to the library be sure to peruse this section, where you will find my personal new favorites and maybe even your child's or your own too!

    Miss Jennifer's Picture Book Gems 

    Dancing With the Dinosaurs by Jane Clarke
    Juvenile Picture Book
    JE Clarke
    Publication Date: 2012

    Get ready to put on your dancing shoes and do a boogie-woogie-doo-wop with a dinosaur while reading Dancing with the Dinosaurs by Jane Clarke.

    Children will be cheering on their favorite dino dancers in this creative story which takes a spin on the popular Dancing with the Stars t.v. show.

    The prehistoric judges will delight children as they suddenly disappear during the show as they view the disco dancing Duckbills to tapping Raptors.

    By the end of the tale, readers will learn of the mystery surrounding the disappearing judges in a fit of giggly glee!

    Lee Wildish's illustrations lend a glitzy background to this star-studded competition with their rich crimson shades, lime greens, and watery blues.

    Author Jane Clarke's prose brings the story to life with its jazzy wordplay and spicy language which is perfectly suitable for preschoolers and up.

    So dance on down to the library and check out this stomping good read!

    Limelight Larry by Leigh Hodgkinson
    Juvenile Picture Book
    JE Hodgkinson
    Publication Date: 2010

    Limelight Larry loves the limelight!

    Enter Larry's world in this foil-enhanced story about a plucky pompous peacock with an overinflated ego and a hankering for the spotlight.

    Those that enjoy Mo Willem's Elephant and Piggie series will equally enjoy the witty dialogue and fast-paced bantering of its characters.

    Larry is in his very own book!  He is the number one, numero uno, star of this show, well he thinks so until some very unwelcome guests show up to steal his thunder.

    Along comes mouse, bird, elephant, and a number of assorted characters which really ruffle Larry's feathers.

    It's not until Limelight Larry loses his cool and learns a lesson that being in the limelight isn't all it's cracked up to be. A must-read!

    All Kinds of Kisses by Nancy Tafuri
    Juvenile Picture Book
    JE Tafuri
    Publication Date: 2012

    Nancy Tafuri truly understands the simplicity of childhood and the heartfelt contentment between a parent and child.

    She instills the beauty of parental love in her newest book which touches on kisses.

    All the barnyard animals in the book have a homespun quality which harkens back to a less harried time of simplicity such as lazy afternoons spent playing outdoors in the sunshine.

    This sweet story centers on all the forms of kisses the barnyard mamas and papas give their young such as cheep kisses from mama hen and meow kisses from a furry calico cat to her kitten.

    Tafuri's classic watercolor style is reminiscent of 1940's children's illustrations with their lovable , tender appearance which is captured in each carefully placed brushstroke. This book is perfect for a baby or bedtime storytime. 

    *Best Bets*
    My favorite is Reaching for babies to preschoolers and Strega Nona's Gift for 2nd to 4th Graders. 

    Reaching by Judy Ann Sadler
    Juvenile Picture Book
    JE Sadler
    Publication Date: 2011

    A bright and airy afternoon spent with the family exhibits all kinds of loving reaching.

    Baby tickles, family huddles, and grandma dances, elicit a swell of sentimentality in any parent who reads this fanciful book which tugs at the heart strings.

    Just looking at the exquisite images produced by Canadian artist, Susan Mitchell, makes one ponder of the love felt within each of the lovingly-detailed watercolor renderings.

    Each picture is spirited, yet touching in it's soft, inviting, and natural delicacy.

    Miss Sadler's words are immensely enjoyable to read and develop a deep connection between the reader and the story which many picture books of the same caliber lack.

    The most touching scenes in the book appear on the very last pages which show how a parent's love is monumental in shaping a child's future.

    The following words create a stunning ending to this flawless picture book:
    "Soon Baby will reach for the moon and the stars...But not quite yet, Baby, for now you're still ours!" 
    (Source: Reaching by Judy Ann Sadler) 

    Strega Nona's Gift by Tomie DePaola
    Juvenile Picture Book
    JE DePaola
    Publication Date: 2011

    I have many fond memories of Tomie DePaola's stories. My mother would always read me one of his lovely books the minute they were published.

    I would anxiously await each one of his tales as I would cuddle up next to mama and to listen to his glorious word's come to life through her animated reading and his beautiful use of imagery and illustration.

    As a recipient of many awards, DePaola has mastered the craft of fine storytelling.

    His speciality will always remain in his poetic use of his beloved Strega Nona (Grandma Witch) character which he has reincarnated through numerous books.

    He takes such pride in creating this memorable lady who honors his Italian heritage beautifully.

    Strega Nona is a grizzled and kindly old woman in a small Calabria village in a time long past.

    Her love of cooking and thick-skulled, clumsy, and good-hearted Big Anthony make every story a masterpiece.

    This story, which centers around the many holidays and feast days of the Christmas season, hits the mark for its attention to cultural detail and respect for Italian traditions.

    The story focuses specifically around Strega Nona who is busily preparing food during each of the feast days of the holiday season such as the Feast of San Nicola on December 6th to the Feast of Santa Lucia on December 13th.

    Her apprentice, Big Anthony, just wants to be helpful, but Strega Nona knows this sweet-natured oaf will only cause more headaches that she will have to clean up later on.

    Strega Nona does decide to give Big Anthony one very important task: bring food to her goat on the Eve of Epiphany (January 5th).

    A well-known legend states that when the clock strikes midnight all the animals talk to each other. If they don't receive a tasty treat they may tell the other animals that they are not being taken care of. So in order to quell these concerns, people create delicious delicacies for them to eat.

    Unfortunately, the delicious smells are too much for Big Anthony to bear.

    Will Big Anthony be able to give the goat her delicious food or will he once again muddle things up?

    Read this charming tale which includes a well-researched chronology of the various special days in the Italian holiday season to find out.

    Wednesday, March 21, 2012

    Introducing Miss Theresa's Page!

    I'd like to introduce Miss Theresa who conducts the Kindergarten through 2nd Grade Storytime on Tuesday afternoons to the blog!

    You will often find her busily creating beautiful bulletin boards, book displays, and helping our young patrons find wonderful books and information for their school projects.

    She is currently writing book reviews of all the fascinating and cool books she has recently read on her page found at the top of this page titled "Miss Theresa's Page".

    Make sure to check it out!

    Jasper Jones Book Review

    March 21, 2012
    Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey
    Young Adult Novel
    YA Silvey
    Pulication Date: 2011

    When thirteen year old Charlie Bucktin is approached for help by the town’s “half-caste” bad boy, Jasper Jones, he unknowingly becomes involved in covering up the death of a local girl.  Charlie believes that “Jasper Jones speaks the whole truth in a town of liars,” and Jasper says he did not murder Laura Wishart.  With no mother and an alcoholic father who is rarely around, Jasper Jones has never had a real chance at a normal life.  He will undoubtedly be accused of this crime because it is easy.  For this reason, it is up to Charlie to find the courage and help Jasper solve this ghastly mystery before the town erupts.  After ruling out their main suspect, Jasper and Charlie learn that Laura killed herself.  Her own sister helplessly witnessed it, and reveals that Laura could not cope with a disturbing family secret.
                Set in a small Australian mining town during the Vietnam War, much racial prejudice is apparent.  Charlie is continually amazed by the bravery shown by Jasper and his Vietnamese friend, Jeffrey as they continually battle the town bigots and thugs.       Told from Charlie’s point of view, the story follows a well-paced narrative structure. The many side characters and the less than perfect town’s people keep it  interesting.  Throughout the story there is the continual mounting anticipation about where Jasper is and what will happen next.  Faith, sorrow, guilt, trust, forgiveness, love, truth, and courage are among the many issues addressed. In the end, Charlie realizes that courage is “not about being without it (fear.)  Maybe it’s about how well you walk with the weight.” Jasper knew this all too well. 
    Silvey leaves the reader with an open ending.  At the conclusion of the story, one can only imagine where Jasper Jones goes and if the location of Laura Wishart’s body will ever be revealed.  The strong language is appropriate for the intended audience and makes the characters believable.  The mature theme also includes some sexual content and the mention of an incestuous relationship.  This mystery is difficult to put down.

    Great Women In History: March is National Women's History Month

    Women have played an instrumental role in both world and American history.

    Imagine glamorous Queen Cleopatra when she ruled the sand swept hills of Egypt with the greatest intelligence, grace, and dignity.

    Unfortunately, many history books portray her as a devious siren who used her sensuality to seduce both Mark Antony and Julius Caesar.

    Those tomes fail to diverge the fact that she penned many books and scholarly papers and spoke several languages including Greek in order to converse with the peoples of her kingdom.

    Cleopatra's legacy lived on through her daughter with Mark Antony, Cleopatra Selene, who was a powerful and intelligent woman in her own right.

    You can read the teen historical fiction novel, Cleopatra's Moon by Vicky Alvear Shecter (YA Shecter) which blends historical facts and fiction to create a dramatic and satisfying read of this ancient ruler. Read my review of this book by clicking on the "Book Reviews" tab under the date December 7, 2011.

    Examine the courage of the early suffragettes who in the 1800's forged the way for the passing of the ratification of the 19th amendment on August 18, 1920 that allowed every American woman full voting rights.

    Their strength and diligence enabled them to endure both physical and emotional hardships, incarceration and humiliation.

    Some of these brave and influential women such as Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton quickly come to mind. Sadly, many of these steadfast and determined women's names have been lost in history, but their voices are clear and distinct every election year as women line up to vote in local and presidential elections.

    Viewers of the movie Iron Jawed Angels (DVD Iron) can envision the hardships felt by suffragettes Alice Paul and Lucy Burns who crusaded for the women's right to vote.

    Reminisce over the intellectual and oratory ability of Victoria Woodhull who decided to become the first U.S. woman to run for presidential office in 1872.

    Children can learn more about this remarkable woman by reading A Woman for President: The Story of Victoria Woodhull by Kathleen Krull (J 921 Woodhull).

    So who are your favorite female role models and why? They can either be famous or everyday. They could be your sister, mother, or next-door-neighbor. Please comment below by clicking on the brown highlighted link next to "Posted by Jennifer at...".

    Below you will find a list of who my favorite female heroines are and why.

    1. My mother because she is the strongest, most caring, kind, hardworking and intelligent woman I know whose beauty shines through both inside and out. She will always be my first and best friend. 
    2. Deborah Sampson (B. December 17, 1760 D. April 29, 1827) disguised herself as a man named Robert Shurtleff (there are multiple other spellings of this name) in order to fight in the Revolutionary War. Unfortunately due to a fever, Ms. Sampson was admitted to a hospital where her true identity was found and she was honorably discharged. She went on to marry a farmer named Benjamin Gannett and raise three children. One account states that they also adopted an orphan child: National Women's History Museum Deborah Sampson. The gallant male patriot, Paul Revere helped Deborah gain a military pension for her service. Other websites about this amazing woman include: History of Us and Distinguished Women of the Past.
    3. Elizabeth Blackwell (February 3, 1821 - May 31, 1910) First woman to gain a medical degree from a medical school in the United States. Read more about her fantastic feat by perusing these websites: Elizabeth Blackwell and
    4. Cleopatra (As stated above) an educated, elegant, and majestic woman. 

    Tuesday, March 20, 2012

    A Spring In Your Step! Today is the First Day of Spring!

    Good-bye winter, hello spring! The Vernal Equinox (Spring) arrived at 1:14 am EST today to a burst of warm sunny breezes and glorious technicolor sights in the Chicagoland area!

    If you would like to learn more about the Vernal Equinox and its effect on weather please visit the Old Farmer's Almanac link: Old Farmer's Almanac First Day of Spring

    I think we should welcome this delightful season by reading an airy and cheerful poem from A Circle of Seasons by Myra Cohn Lvingston which is available in Youth Services. (Call number: J 811.54 Liv).

    Spring brings out her baseball bat, swings it through the air,
    Pitches bulbs and apple blossoms, throws them where it's bare,
    Catches dogtooth violets, slides to meadowsweet,
    Bunts a breeze and tags the trees with green buds everywhere.

    O April,
    March and May,
    Come watch us at our play!

    Would you like to know of a couple of sensational books which you can share with your children about this yearly momentous event? If so, please check out the following titles and our Spring Is In the Air book display in Youth Services. 

    I promise these scintillating spring titles will put a spring in your step on this first day of spring. Book descriptions are brought to you by SirsiDynix Symphony Workflows.

    And Then It's Spring by Julie Fogliano (JE Fogliano New Books)
    Simple text reveals the anticipation of a boy who, having planted seeds while everything around is brown, fears that something has gone wrong until, at last, the world turns green.

    Who's Awake In Springtime? by Phillis Gershator (JE Gershator)
    Describes in rhymed cumulative text and illustrations, how various young animals and one small human prepare for sleep at the end of a spring day.


    You're So Crafty! Join Us for Our Open Crafts Program March 26th to March 29th From 11-2 PM

    Head on down to the library March 26th to March 29th to make your very own spectacular works of art!

    The Program Room will be stocked full of really cool crafts kids can decorate between the hours of 11-2 on the previously stated days.

    Each of the crafts we have designed are perfect for all ages (from the littlest hands to more experienced crafters.)

    This is a drop-in program so there is no need to pre-register.

    Make sure to stop on by and enjoy your Spring Break by getting crafty at the Oak Brook Public Library!

    Monday, March 19, 2012

    Toddling Twos April 2nd and Terrific Threes and Fours April 4th Storytime Topic: Cute and Cuddly Springtime Animals

    Hop on down to Miss Jennifer's April 2nd Toddling Twos and April 4th Terrific Threes and Fours Storytime when our storytime topic is all about cute and cuddly springtime animals. We'll move and groove to a very egg-citing movement activity, learn about animals which hatch from eggs during our Just Hatched Peek-a-Boo Game, read fun and furry tales, and make a little yellow chick hatching from an egg craft.

    Thursday, March 15, 2012

    2012 Fascination Awards Voting Thank You

    I really appreciated that so many people enjoyed reading my blog that it came in 6th place out of 93 other blogs across the country in the 2012 Fascination Awards.

    It was truly an honor to be both selected and acknowledged by the editorial team for this award.

    I would also like to thank whoever nominated me for the award. It means so much to me that you considered the blog's content of high quality.

    All of the blogs that were nominated contained such outstanding and intriguing content and deserved to be in the running for the award.

    It truly pleases me that a fellow blogger and Brook Forest Elementary School librarian (Oak Brook, Illinois), Mr. Schu, placed 2nd in the Fascination Awards. His blog Watch. Connect. Read. definitely meets all the criteria of a fascinating blog. Congratulations Mr. Schu!

    Thank you for all your support!


    Please see the "Top 50" badge on the right-hand side of this page to view the "Top 50 Librarian Blogs of 2012."

    Hooray for Superheroes! A Special Thanks to Steven Frenzel and the Friends of the Library for Helping Us Make Greatest Superhero Moments in the Movies Possible!

    I'd like to thank Steven Frenzel for developing the sensational superhero-themed film presentation Greatest Superhero Moments in the Movies.

    The film clips were action-packed with heroic caped crusaders and dastardly villains that kept audience members on the edge of their seats during every minute of the adrenaline-pumping presentation.

    His speaking style was casual, educational, and energetic as he effortlessly entwined little known cinematic facts and special effects knowledge into this 90-minute program.

    Mr. Frenzel's idea of giving out DVDs to those who have exceptional superhero knowledge is sheer genius! Audience members enjoyed examining the DVDs they had won for knowing these little known facts.

    Steven Frenzel and his staff at Marquee Movie Presentations should be applauded for their professionalism, impressive editing techniques, and beautiful presentation!

    I would also like to thank the Friends of the Library for helping make this program possible. Your generosity and kindness are greatly appreciated.

    Wednesday, March 14, 2012

    Superheroes Vs. Villains: See the Action-Packed 90-Minute Superhero Program Greatest Superhero Moments in the Movies With Steven Frenzel Tonight at 6:30 PM

    Superheroes will battle good-for-nothing villains to retain peace and safety tonight at the Oak Brook Public Library when Steven Frenzel presents Greatest Superhero Moments in the Movies at 6:30 pm in the Friends Meeting Room.

    The audience will cheer on the superheros as they watch action-filled film clips from American superhero favorites. Mr. Frenzel will leave spectators speechless as he explains the bewitching special effects and behind-the-scenes trivia every fan will want to know.

    Superheroes who will be included in this program are:


    The Fantastic Four


    The Incredible Hulk 

    The Avengers 

    Iron Man 

    The X-men 

    And Many More!

    Make sure to brush up on your superhero knowledge because audience members will have a chance to win one of five free DVDs!

    This is a family-friendly event for children seven and older to adults. Due to the content and scene selection some of the flim clips may be inappropriate for children under seven years of age. 

    Call the Y.S. Reference Desk at 630-368-7734 to register. 

    Tuesday, March 13, 2012

    I Love Crafts! March is National Craft Month

    Do you enjoy creating digital picture collages or scrap booking masterpieces? If so, the library is the perfect place to find a great selection of craft and hobby books. Whatever your crafting passions may be from knitting to calligraphy the Oak Brook Public Library can help you find what you need in order to release your creativity and imagination through arts and crafts.

    Some of the following books will help you get your craft on! The call numbers have been put in bold font. All of these crafts books can be found in the March is National Craft Month display in the picture book section of Youth Services.

    Button Girl: More Than 20 Cute-as-a-Button Projects by Mikyla Bruder (J 745.5 BRU)

    Copier Creations: Using Copy Machines to Make Decals, Silhouettes, Flip Books, Films and Much More! by Paul Fleischman (J 760 FLE)

    Creative Greeting Cards by Sandi Genovese (J 745.594 GEN)

    Hands On Crafts for Kids: 20-Minute Crafts published by Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. (J 745.5 HAN)

    I Love to Fingerpaint!: My Very Favorite Art Book by Jennifer Lipsey (J 751.4 LIP)

    In.jean.uity: Dull Denims + Your inJEANuity= Some Pretty COOL Stuff! by Ellen Warwick (J 746.92 WAR)

    The Kids' Knitting Notebook by Cindy Craig (J 746.43 CRA)

    Papercrafts Around the World by Phyllis Fiarotta and Noel Fiarotta (J 745.54 FIA)

    Recycled Crafts Box: Sock Puppets, Cardboard Castles, Bottle Bugs & 37 More Earth-Friendly Projects & Activities You Can Create by Laura C. Martin (J 745.5 MAR)  

    Stencil It: Over 100 Step-by-Step Projects by Sally and Stewart Walton (J 745.7 WAL)

    Ask the Youth Services librarian for more exciting craft books to suit your particular crafting interests or hobby!

    Make sure to mark your calendars for our Open Crafts Program March 26-29 from 11-2 pm. Kids get to make an array of easy and cute crafts in this open craft event. Perfect for all ages. No registration is required.

    Monday, March 12, 2012

    Sheep! Sheep! Sheep! Toddling Twos March 19th and Terrific Threes and Fours March 21st Storytime Topic: Sheep

    Sheep are everywhere during our Toddling Twos March 19th and Terrific Threes and Fours March 21st Storytimes when our storytime topic is sheep. We'll read a baa-unch of sheep stories, visit Mary and her "colorful" sheep in a perky flannel board story, and make a fluffy and cute-as-can-be sheep craft!

    Tuesday, March 6, 2012

    We'll Have A Hog Wild Good Time! Miss Jennifer's Toddling Twos March 12th and Terrific Threes and Fours March 14th Storytime Topic: Pigs

    Pink, portly pigs will parade into our program room during our March 12th Toddling Twos and March 14th Terrific Threes and Fours Storytime when our storytime topic is all about pigs!

    We'll dance with Patricia Pig during the "Piggy Wiggle", feed a very hungry Pauly Pig who only eats foods that begin with "P" during our Pauly Pig's "P"-erfect Meal game, listen to hog-wild stories, and create a piggy bank pig craft.

    Crafting Like No Tomorrow! Upcoming Crafts for March-May Toddling Twos and Terrific Threes and Fours Storytimes

    Nothing says fabulous like glue sticks, paper shapes, and good old imagination. Check out these whimsical and adorable crafts that Miss Jennifer's Toddling Twos and Terrific Threes and Fours will be making during their upcoming storytimes.

    Full of Hot Air: Hot Air Balloon Craft
    I'm Feeling a Little Sheepish: Sheep Craft
    Just Hatched: Baby Chick Craft

    Saving a Pretty Penny: Piggy Bank Craft

    There's Quite a Cast of Superheroes We Will Be Seeing in Steven Frenzel's Superhero Moments in the Movies!

    I just received an e-mail from Steven Frenzel announcing some of the characters audience members will be viewing during his presentation of Superhero Moments in the Movies on March 14 th at 6:30 pm.

    Please take a sneak peek at the description he has provided to learn even more about this spine-tingling and energetic program!


    Get ready for a summer of action as we marvel at the greatest superheroes-and the most sensational villains-in movie history with this exciting new presentation. From such legendary warriors as Superman, Batman, and Spider-man (and more!); to the thrilling groups of The Avengers, The Fantastic Four, and The X-Men (and more!); we'll see the most exciting superhero scenes ever! Watch these American icons save the day while battling the most unforgettable evildoers, and learn fascinating behind-the-scenes trivia about some of the most popular movies of all time!

    Mr. Frenzel will also tell us about superhero mega stars such as The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America.

    Vintage Superman lovers will rejoice that Mr. Frenzel will begin his jam-packed film presentation with 1978's Superman!

    This is not your everyday lecture about movies! This is a film clip treasure trove of cinematic gems with detailed behind-the-scenes tips and info that encourage movie-goers to become even more enthralled over these matinee masterpieces.

    Several audience members will receive free DVDs!

    Registration is required for this program. Please call the Y.S. Reference desk to register for this family-friendly program at 630-368-7734.

    Saturday, March 3, 2012

    My Kind of Town! Happy Birthday Chicago!

    Once a sleepy, muddy frontier town, Chicago, has become a booming, bustling metropolis known for its award-winning restaurants, breathtaking views, world-class museums and tourist attractions, and Midwestern hospitality.

    Tomorrow will mark Chicago's 175th Birthday! This great city was incorporated on March 4th 1837. I have found some remarkable websites, things to do, and activities which will help everyone celebrate the city we call home.

    This calendar showcases all the wonderful things we can do to celebrate the "Windy City" for 175 days (March 4 - August 26) in Chicago.

    Bring the kids to the Chicago History Museum on March 4th for a very special birthday party!'s-bday

    Chicago Tribune: Timeline of Important Chicago Events,0,6832736,full.story

    Read this Chicago Sun-Times article to learn about all the fabulous items and events which happened right here in Chicago! Some of these events include the "first radio soap opera" and the creation of such yummy treats as brownies that came to us via the innovative Palmer House Hotel!

    How Kid's Can Celebrate Chicago's Birthday

    Hold a birthday party with Chicago favorites including deep dish pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, Eli's Cheesecake, Twinkies etc.

    Create the Willis Tower using Legos

    Make a lion in honor of the "Chicago Art Institute Lions". Use mint green paper if you would like to make your lions the true verdigris color of the "Art Institute Lions". Place a triangle-shaped piece of paper on their heads to represent a party hat! Click on link below for lion crafts.

    Design a majestic crayon resist cityscape using crayons and black paint.

    Read the juvenile fantasy novel, The Sixty-Eight Rooms by Marianne Malone. The novel surrounds a mysterious key and the ubiquitous Throne Rooms. The Throne Rooms are the lovely and historically accurate miniature rooms found in the Chicago Art institute.

    Sing the following song:
    "Chicago's Birthday" 
    (Tune: "Take Me Out to the Ballgame") 

    March Fourth is Chicago's birthday
    Let's sing "Happy Birthday" and cheer
    Eat lots of cake and ice cream too
    Because our city is just so cool!

    So let's sing "Happy Birthday" to Chicago
    Make lots of noise so everybody can hear
    And blow out 175 big, bright candles
    To celebrate this year!

    Song by Jennifer Hatcher

    Make your own Picasso-style sculpture of the famous Picasso Sculpture in Daley Center Plaza using paper shapes and toilet paper rolls. See the following site for pictures of this unusual, yet captivating statue.

    Use aluminum foil to sculpt a replica of "The Bean" found in Millennium Park. Click on link to view pictures of "The Bean".

    Thursday, March 1, 2012

    Sensational Seuss: Celebrate Dr. Seuss's Birthday on March 2nd

    Let's eat Green Eggs and Ham or dance with the Cat and the Hat. These would both be the perfect ways to celebrate the birthday of the prolific author, Dr. Seuss, who wrote such wonderfully gibberish-filled books such as the ones stated at the beginning of this post.

    Dr. Seuss was born Theodor Geisel on March 2, 1904 in Springfield, Massachusetts. Dr. Seuss, as he is commonly called, also penned children's books under the pseudonym Theo LeSieg. Dr. Seuss died September 24, 1991 in La Jolla, California.

    See the following websites to learn more about this zany, quirky, and lovable author and illustrator who turned children's books and illustrations into wacky works of glorious art!

    Things to Do to Celebrate Dr. Seuss's Birthday

    Check out one of his literary masterpieces such as The Cat in the Hat. 

    Make a Cat in the Hat Paper Plate Craft!
    Paper Plate Cat in the Hat Craft

    Check out a kid's biography about Dr. Seuss.

    Watch a movie based on one of Dr. Seuss's books such as How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

    Try out one of these delicious and oh so unique Dr. Seuss-style recipes from the Green Eggs and Ham Cookbook by Georgeanne Brennan. 
    Dr. Seuss-Style Recipes

    Watch the following YouTube video on the life of Dr. Seuss!

    Play a Dr. Seuss Game!
    Play a Seuss-tastic Game!

    Learn more about Dr. Seuss by reading an online biography! Bio
    Full Biography on Early Early Life, Later Life, and Awards Won

    See the Dr. Seuss Memorial Sculpture Garden in his hometown of Springfield, Massachusetts.
    Dr. Seuss Memorial Sculpture Garden