Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Thank You Oak Brook and the Many Library Patrons for Making My Time Spent at the Library Extraordinary!

I would like to thank the Village of Oak Brook for allowing me the chance to spend over two years devising programming, blogging, doing research and finding quality literature for the juvenile, teens and adult patrons of Oak Brook. 

Through my work in the Youth Services Department, I was able to deepen children's knowledge and wonder of the written word through movement activities, flannelboards, and games which brought books to life during my toddler and preschool storytimes. Every moment spent working with the children was pure joy and will be greatly missed as my journey into an Early Childhood teaching career begins. 

I would like to thank the library director, Sue Madorin, for encouraging me to pursue my early childhood education career by taking online courses. 

There have been many organizations within the village that have been such a pleasure to work with and have made my Youth Services programs come to life including the Oak Brook Fire Department, Oak Brook Park District and the Oak Brook Garden Club

I would like to thank Bob Robertson of the Oak Brook Fire Department for his exceptional storytelling and safety demonstration during my Fireman Storytime. Fireman Robertson has a true gift for gearing educational content to audiences of every age, which made this storytime both enjoyable and memorable to myself and our youngest patrons. 

To Trupti Vyas of the Oak Brook Park District  who brought the magical beauty and dance of India to the library through her Passport to India presentation. Ms. Vyas's effervescence and knowledge of her culture brought depth and meaning to this spellbinding program. 

The last organization I would like to thank is the Oak Brook Garden Club whose members put together a hands-on gardening program that made the children want to learn about the loveliness of nature. These organizations and individuals exemplify the high-quality of Oak Brook employees and clubs. 

To the children of my storytimes and of Oak Brook, Miss Jennifer was so honored to be able to create programming and choose books and crafts which increased your love of reading and helped develop your creativity. 

I will always remember your laughter, sweet words and adorable faces which were the highlight of my days. Without you, there would be no need for a Youth Services Department at all. You are all such an inspiration and I will miss all of you greatly.

Lastly, I would like to thank all the storytime parents and those who supported me through my student teaching and college coursework. I am so grateful that you gave me the opportunity to sing, read, and encourage your children to love literature as much as I do. Your support meant the world to me and pushed me to be the best "student teacher" and storytime leader I could be. 

I would like to announce that I have decided to enter the exciting field of Early Childhood Education by becoming the Lead Toddler/Twos Teacher at a center in the Chicagoland area. This position is a dream come true because it will allow me to interact with children all day long! 

I will be able to sing silly songs, dance upbeat dances, and play with finger paints to my hearts content while educating the doctors, lawyers, and teachers of the future. 

Thank You!
Jennifer Hatcher 
Oak Brook Public Library Youth Services Assistant 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Tasty Treats from Across the Pond: English Trifle

The Olympics are underway in the historically beautiful country of England! Why not learn about the epicurean delights of this country by sampling a delicious trifle?

 The trifle is a common dessert created by stacking a variety of items on top of each other within a compote bowl. Typical ingredients include lady finger cookies, whipped cream, and fresh fruit. Why not make this English specialty at home with your kids by using the following easy-to-make recipes. 


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

With a Moo Moo Here and a Baa Baa There: Spotlight on the Dupage County Fair (July 25-29)

The first county fair I had ever gone to was the homespun and lovely DuPage County Fair in Wheaton, Illinois. The aromas of freshly spun cotton candy, buttery popcorn, hot dogs and hamburgers made my mouth water and the exhibits featuring livestock such as cows and sheep left me breathless with excitement.

The reason I love county fairs is because they remind us of the time when the majority of the country was rural and relied on the land and livestock as their main source of income. County fairs allowed farmers and townspeople alike to assemble and show off their ingenuity, excellent home cooking, beautiful sewing and farming skills.

These hardworking individuals toiled for hours perfecting their apple pie recipes, sheep shearing skills, tomato growing techniques, and so on, in order to participate in this illustrious yearly competition. Oftentimes, these determined individuals eagerly awaited the results of contests such as Best Jam or Largest Watermelon with bated breath for who would win the blue ribbon. The joy, happiness and competitive spirit in the air was palpable and the winner was often front page news of the local paper!

To commemorate the DuPage County Fair and its commitment and history, I have created a book display titled Come on Down to the Fair! to entice readers to learn about this nostalgic American classic.

You can also visit the DuPage County Fair this week (July 25-29) and make fond memories such as my own with your entire family!

See What's Happening at the DuPage County Fair: http://www.dupagecountyfair.org/

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

We're Counting Down the Days to the Olympics! Olympic Sports Book Display

I've  decided to design  the following Olympic Sports book display just as the excitement of the Olympics reaches full fervor and the athletes and fans arrive in London in wild anticipation of the Opening Games! Below you will find a wide range of the many sporting events that will be seen around the world during this monumental event, such as volleyball, Judo, equestrian feats, and trampolining (gymnastics).

Monday, July 23, 2012

Miss Jennifer's Reading is So Delicious (Snickerdoodles Toddler and Cutie Pies Preschool) Storyimes are Ending This Week!

I had several helpings of delicious storytimes during my Reading is So Delicious Summer Snickerdoodles Toddler and Cutie Pies Preschool Storytimes. My toddler storytimes ended today. I will be holding my final Cutie Pies Preschool Storytime tomorrow and Wednesday afternoon.

Below you will find the ending dates for Miss Theresa's and Miss Mandy's savory storytimes.

Scooper Dupers for Kindergartners, First and Second Graders will group together with Miss Theresa on Monday, July 23rd and Friday, July 27th.

Sweet and Sassy Stories for Ages 5-8 meets with Miss Mandy
Thursday, July 26th

Miss Jennifer's Grocery Store Storytime Template

Showed children a picture of the shopping cart from the shopping cart sizing flannelboard (below) and asked the children if they had ever gone to the grocery store with their mommy/nanny/grandma etc. I then told them that after their moms/nannies etc. buy the groceries they are put in grocery bags which they bring home. This was a perfect introduction to my opening bagging groceries by the items written on the grocery list activity.

Grocery List Game
Introduced the game by telling the children that after we pay for our groceries, we have a person called a bagger, bag our groceries so that we can bring them home. I told the children that they were were going to make believe they were baggers. I then read the items off the grocery list pictured. After I read the name of a item off of the list, the children placed that item in the bag pictured. I used plastic play food for most of the items.

Just a sampling of some of the tasty groceries on our list!

 Books Read
Adventures of a Cow Too by Cow
Too Many Pears by Jackie French

Today's flannelboard was called The Vegetable Man. This flannelboard story can be found on page 235 of The Best of Totline Flannelboards written and compiled by Kathleen Cubley.

Optional Flannelboard: Grocery Carts Sizing Game
I was going to use the following flannelboard game for this storytime, but decided to use the previous flannelboard instead.
Source of Grocery Carts Sizing Game: http://www.kidsparkz.com/supermarket.html.

Grocery Store Bag

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Beyond Harry Potter:Very English Reads for Kids and Teens

As the London Olympics draw near, I have been creating book displays which show many aspects of English culture, history and literature. This book display will center on books whose plots are set in England.

Teen Fiction
Smack by Melvin Burgess (YA Burgess)
Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier (YA Gier)
Raven's Gate: Book One of the Gatekeeper by Anthony Horowitz (YA Horowitz)
Beware, Princess Elizabeth by Carolyn Meyer (YA Meyer)
The Other Side of Truth by Bevery Naidoo (YA Naidoo)
Westminster Abby by Micol Ostow (YA Ostow)
I Conquer Britain by Dyan Sheldon (YA Sheldon)
Montmorency on the Rocks by Eleanor Updale (YA Updale)

Juvenile Fiction
The Traitors' Gate by Avi (J Avi)
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (J Doyle)
One Dog and His Boy by Eva Ibbotson (J Ibbotson)
Redwall by Brian Jacques (J Jacques)
The Tail of Emily Winsnap by Liz Kessler (J Kessler)
Charlotte in London by Joan MacPhail Knight  (J Knight)
Resurrection Men by T.K. Welsh (J Welsh)

Children's Picture Book
A Walk in London by Salvatore Rubino (JE Rubino)

Miss Jennifer's Picture Book Parade for August is On My Way to the Bath by Sarah Maizes

Wild imaginations reign in the pages of On My Way to the Bath by Sarah Maizes where you will find a quirky, spritely little redhead whose dislike for baths causes her mind to wander. As her mother kindly chides her to bath time in graphic-novel style word balloons, the girl continues her mission by creating an uproarious array of situations, characters and animals in a quest to ignore that darned bath. She’ll slither like a snake, become a world-class gymnast and even sing like diva as her bath time adventure continues. After “getting her feet wet" in the cursed bath her imagination soars to new heights. This story's delightfully bubbly conclusion will “wash” away the blues and make children want to go on their own bath time expeditions. Make sure to enjoy this squeaky clean tale that can’t be beat!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Let's Go to the Grocery Store! July 23rd Snickerdoodles Toddler and July 24th and 25th Cutie Pies Preschool Storyimes Grocery Bag Craft

Let's rush to the store and buy an armful of groceries! The following is the craft for the July 23rd Snickerdoodles Toddler Storytime and July 24th and 25th Cutie Pies Preschool Storytimes.

Please see my July 16th post on the July 23rd Snickerdoodles Toddler Storytime and July 24th and 25th Cutie Pies Preschool Storytimes for complete details on all the exciting activities we will be conducting during these grocery-themed storytimes!

We took a "trip" to the Little Sprouts' Grocery Store for the freshest foods around! (Label created through clipart from Microsoft Publisher)

Open up the flap on the other side to see the groceries we bought!

What a grocery bonanza!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Miss Jennifer's Bakery Storytime Template

Showed children a picture of a baker with his tasty treats including bread, cakes, cookies and more! I explained to the children that people who make us these sweet treats are called bakers and that where these items are made is called a bakery.

Action Rhyme
Cookie Jar and 10 Cookies

Recite the rhyme as you have the children give you a quarter for their cookies. I created a "quarter jar" for their money which they placed in the slot I slit into a plastic container lid.

Down around the corner at the bakery shop...there were 10 little cookies with frosting on top (I changed the rhyme to "waiting to be bought" since I had created gingerbread cookie paper cut-outs instead of "frosted" cookies). Along came ____________ (insert child's name) with a quarter to pay. He (she) bought himself (or herself) a cookie and he/she took it away.
Source: http://storytimefun.wordpress.com/ (See under Storyime: Cookies)

Books Read
Little Mouse and the Big Cupcake by Thomas Taylor
Mr. Cookie Baker by Monica Wellington

I used the poem The Runaway Cookies for this flannelboard. This poem can be found at http://wiki.kcls.org/tellmeastory/index.php/The_Runaway_Cookies

Cupcake Craft

We're Famous: The English that Shaped America and the World

England is a country who has given much to the world in science, literature, exploration, and even some swashbuckling infamy in the form of the ferocious Blackbeard the Pirate. The following display chronicles the many splendid peoples who have added dimension and depth throughout English history.

Edmond Halley: The Man and His Comet by Barbara Hooper Heckart

Biography: Jane Austen by Amy Ruth (J Austen Rut)
Beatrix Potter: The Story of the Creator of Peter Rabbit by Elizabeth Buchan (J 921 Potter)
Beard of Avon: The Story of William Shakespeare by Diane Stanley and Peter Vennema (J 921 Sha)

Great Explorations: Henry Hudson: In Search of the Northwest Passage by Steven Otfinoski (J 921 Hudson Oft)
Blackbeard: The Pirate King told in verse by J. Patrick Lewis (J 921 Teac Lew)

William Penn: Founder of Pennsylvania by Barbara A. Somervill (J 921 Penn Som)

Medicine (Elizabeth Blackwell was born in England, but became the first woman to become a doctor in the U.S.)
Elizabeth Blackwell: First Woman Physician by Tristan Boyer Binns (J 921 Blackwell Bin)

People in the News: Prince William by Terri Dougherty (J 921 William Dou)
Princess Diana: A Photographic Story of a Life by Joanne Mattern (J 921 Diana Mat)
Queen Victoria and the British Empire by Nancy Whitelaw (J 921 Victoria Whi)

The countdown to the 2012 London Olympics continues!

Time to Pick Up the Groceries: Snickerdoodles July 23rd and Cutie Pies July 24th and 25th Storytime Topic: The Grocery Store

We'll grab our grocery lists and head on down to the supermarket during our Snickerdoodles Toddlers and Cutie Pies Preschool Storytimes next week (July 23, 24, and 25)! Little ones will pick up all the items they need in our Let's Go Shopping Grocery List Game, read an assortment of food shopping tales, sort shopping carts by size in our What a Cartload of Groceries Shopping Cart Sizing Flannelboard, and make a bagful of groceries craft.

*I will be putting the photo of the grocery bag craft up tomorrow.*

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Going for the Gold: Kid-Friendly Olympic Websites, Crafts, and Information

Get your children ready for the upcoming London Olympics by visiting the following sites which offer simple crafts, information, and activities that are perfect for busy teachers and parents alike. 

Information for Kids about the Olympics 

Olympics Coloring Pages

Preschool Olympic Lesson Plans and Activities

Olympic Crafts and More!

Children's Books About the Olympic Games 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

In a Land Far, Far Away: Fables and Folklore of England

English fairy tales and folklore offer a splash of whimsy, a dash of  magic, and an impressive array of characters ranging from dashing knights, fearsome giants to beautiful princesses. These stories have woven themselves into the American culture as English immigrants came to America in search of work, fame, fortune, or a new life. These energetic men's and women's oral traditions continue to fascinate, amaze and fulfill our need for fantasy and escape into a land of make-believe.

As we count our way down to the beginning of the London Olympic Games let us peruse some of the many volumes of exceptional folklore, fables, and yarns England has to offer.

Jack and the Beanstalk Retold by Ann Keay Beneduce (J 398.2 England Ben)
English Folktale: Edited by Dan Keding and Amy Douglas (J 398.2 England English)
The Old Woman and Her Pig: An Old English Tale by Rosanne Litzinger (J 398.2 England Lit)
Robin of Sherwood by Micheal Morpurgo (J 398.2 England Mor)
Lancelot by Hudson Talbott (J 398.2 England Tal)
The Little People's Pageant of Cornish Legends by Eric Quayle (J 398.2 England Qua)
The Maiden on the Moor by Marilyn Singer (J 398.2 England Sin)
King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table by Marcia Williams (J 398.2 England Wil)

July 16th Snickerdoodles and July 17th and 18th Cutie Pies Preschool Storyime Topic: Bakery

We'll be a bunch of smart cookies during our July 16th Snickerdoodles and July 17th and 18th Cutie Pies Storytimes because our theme is all about the yummy and sweet treats that can be bought at a bakery!

During this storytime we'll learn why some very crumbly cookies run away from the cookie jar in our The Runaway Cookie Flannelboard, buy some cookies at the bakery shop when we play the game Cookie Jar and 10 Cookies, read bakery-themed tales, and make a perfectly frosted cupcake. Sweet!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Getting Ready for the London 2012 Olympics Window Display

We're getting ready for the Olympics which will be in merry ole England this year with a very British window display. I used clipart from Microsoft Publisher for my "postcard" images, coloring pages from http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/london_bus_colouring_page.htm,
http://www.coloring.ws/england.htm (bobby and English map), and various other sources. The book covers featuring Olympic sporting events were reduced to 53 percent their size and the gold, silver, and bronze medals were created using shimmery card stock. I attached a white and yellow striped ribbon to each medal to complete the award-winning look. May the countdown continue!

Olympic Flag 

This is the flag of England (the red cross in the middle is called St. George's Cross). The red, white and blue Union Jack (found in my previous book display) is the flag of Great Britian (England, Scotland, and Wales). 

Double Decker Bus