Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Happy Birthday America: Celebrating America's Birthday with Books

Fireworks, parades, and the singing of our National Anthem are symbolic reminders of the Fourth of July. The day when we all come together to celebrate the birthday of our nation: The United States.

The United States is such a varied and culturally diverse nation that owes its history to the many peoples who came to its shores and brought their traditions and folklore with them. The fanciful tales that they told have been incorporated into the essence and hallmarks of our nation: freedom, pride, and American ingenuity.

Below you will find a sampling of these tales and biographies of famous people that will liven up any Fourth of July family get-together or relaxed day spent celebrating our nation's birth.

American Folklore
Saving the Liberty Bell story by Megan McDonald (JE McDonald)
Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood by Mike Artell (J 398.2 USA Art)
Kumak's House: A Tale of the Far North by Michael Bania (J 398.2 USA Ban)
Jack The Giant Chaser: An Appalachian Tale by Kenn and Joanne Compton (J 398.2 USA Com)
LaPin Plays Possum: Trickster Tales from the Louisiana Bayou Adapted by Sharon Arms Doucet (J 398.2 USA Dou)
Pecos Bill: A Tall Tale retold and illustrated by Steven Kellogg (J 398.2 USA Kel)
Cindy Ellen: A Wild Western Cinderella by Susan Lowell (J 398.2 USA Low)
Dusty Locks and the Three Bears by Susan Lowell (J 398.2 USA Low)
American Tall Tales by Mary Pope Osborne (J 398.2 USA Osb)

Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books by Kay Winters and Nancy
Carpenter (J 921 Lincoln Win)
Dolley Madison by Jean L.S. Patrick (J 921 Madison, D Pat)
Haym Salomon: American Patriot by Susan Goldman Rubin (J 921 Salomon Rub)
George Washington's Teeth by Deborah Chandra and Madeline Comora (J 921 Washington Cha)

Fireworks, Picnics and Flags: The Story of the Fourth of July Symbols by James Cross Giblin (J 394.2634)
The Flag Maker by Susan Cambell Bartoletti (J 929.92 Bar)
State Flags (Including the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico) by Sue R. Brandt (J 929.9 Bra)
Our National Symbols by Linda Carlson Johnson (J 929.9 Joh)
American Flag Q & A by The Smithsonian (J 929 Tho)

Check out some of these books beautiful and inviting covers below.

Miss Jennifer's Picture Book Parade Review for July: Duck Sock Hop by Jane Kohuth

Miss Jennifer's Picture Book Parade 
Duck Sock Hop by Jane Kohuth
JE Kohuth (New Picture Books Shelf)

Grab your socks, grab any pair, and be dazzled by the music as you dance on air!  In this darling tale, you will meet some very vivacious and groovy feathered friends who grab their snazzy socks and dash off to a weekly sock hop.

Watch as these fowl boogie, jam, and dance in their knitted attire as much as they desire. Suddenly, an eccentric din breaks loose. Pastries scatter, juice splatters, chic socks rip, and the music comes to a screeching halt as the ducks show off their cool moves.

What's a jazzy duck to do when total dance chaos ensues? Read Duck Sock Hop by Jane Kohuth to find out.

This story can be used to help young children learn colors, recognize patterns such as shapes, and  understand texture discrimination (lacy, ruffled socks etc.). I promise that it will totally "quack" you up with its hip color scheme and imaginative text.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Miss Jennifer's German Foods/Food Trip: Germany Template

We trekked through Germany to find out about the many epicurean wonders this country had to offer during our German Foods/Food Trip: Germany Storytime.

Showed children a map of Germany and traditional German clothing before giving them a traditional construction paper Edelweiss hat worn in the Bavaria region of Germany.

Edelweiss Hat
Unfortunately, I didn't have any large green paper so I had to use red paper to construct this hat.

I created a flannelboard from the popular rhyme Brown Bun (with the addition of lettuce). I turned it into a movement activity by saying the hungry child needed us to make him a yummy hamburger. Each time a new item was placed on the board, I would have the children bounce for the brown bun, tickle their toes for the pickle etc. (Source:

Books Read
The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog! by Mo Willems (Toddlers)
Burger Boy by Alan Durant (Preschoolers)

Music We Listened to During Craft

I created a "food colors" of the German flag flannelboard. I had the children place colors of the flag in the proper order. Examples for black foods are olives, black beans and a mushroom, red foods include a  strawberry, cherry and apple and yellow foods could be a lemon, banana or cheese.

Optional Flannelboard
Five Little Hot dogs (with printable template)

Hamburger Collage

No Storytimes the week of July 4th and No Snickerdoodles Storytime on July 9th

We have been having so much fun in storytime lately, but due to the July 4th holiday week we will not be holding any storytimes during July 2nd - 7th.

Please note that we will also not be holding a Snickerdoodles Toddler Storytime on July 9th, but will be continuing our programs the next week (Monday, July 16th).

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Library of Congress Exhibit: Books That Shaped America

Books are more then just prose, plot, and an author's perspective. They speak to us in many ways by sparking controversy, introspection, and creativity within ourselves.

In order to increase our knowledge of the value of the book on the American conscience, the Library of Congress in Washington D.C., has developed an exhibit titled Books That Shaped America which will open on June 25th.

By viewing the link below you will learn more about this exhibit and view the titles which were chosen by the Library of Congress for their impact on the American psyche.

This link will lead you to a web page where you can watch a video produced by the Library of Congress showcasing individual authors, librarians, and library employees picks for Books That Shaped America.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Mr. E.'s Reading Is So Delicious!

Children and adults were entranced by the delightful and side-splitting hilarity of the one-and-only Mr. E during his show, Reading is So Delicious with Mr. E., tonight at the library.

Through the use of magic and puppetry, Mr. E. held the attention of even our youngest patrons by using his masterful storytelling ability and creative props, such as a colorful goldfish scarf.

Mr. E.'s show was very interactive and allowed the children to become part of the madcap action! I especially enjoyed the idea of entwining popular children's literature into his show.

As you will see in the photos below Mr. E.'s show definitely proves that Reading is So Delicious!

The Youth Services Department would also like to thank the Friends of the Library for helping make this program possible.





Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Miss Jennifer's Italian Foods/Food Trip: Italy Storytime Template

My storytime kids and I fell in love with the beauty and foods of Italy during my Italian Foods/Food Trip: Italy Storytimes.

 Showed children a map of Italy and described that it was shaped like a boot kicking a ball (Sicily). Explained to children that Italy was far away so they needed a plane ticket to go there.

Plane Ticket
Gave children plane ticket from Then explained to children that in order to get into Italy they would have to show their passport. I described to the children that a passport shows you are a visitor from the U.S. (or another country).

Created a passport using blue cardstock and a template from Inside you will find I modified an idea from and created thumbnail pictures of Italy and Germany coloring pages from ,  next to where I placed my stamp of arrival. The stamp of arrival is an adorable french postal stamper from Hobby Lobby.


"If You Want to Eat Some Pizza" (Tune: "Happy and You Know It") (Source:

Books Read
Oodles of Noodles by Diana Hendry
Pizza At Sally's by Monica Wellington

Italian/American Food Match-up Game. Children placed foods belonging to Italy under the Italian flag and foods from the U.S. under the American flag. Italian food examples include a pizzelle cookie, pizza, pastas, tomato, mozzarella cheese balls, latte with small cup and pizza. American food examples include corn, roasted turkey, apple pie, watermelon, and ice cream (technically, ice cream can also be Italian. Italians call ice cream gelato).

Paper plate pizza. Paper plates were dyed with tea to give them a "just baked" feel.

Music we listened to during Craft
A World of Kids: Italy. Songs included on this cd include "Santa Lucia", "Mia Bella Annina" ("My Beautiful Annina") and "Canta Gondoliere" ("Sing, Gondolier").