Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Hello! From Miss. Cate!

Hello, my name is Miss. Cate. I am the newest staff member of the Oak Brook Public Library Youth Services Department. I am very excited to join the team of wonderful people here at the library!
A little bit about myself, I recently graduated from Elmhurst College with a degree in Education. I studied Early Childhood Education and minored in Special Education.  When I am not at the library I like to read, swim, run and watch television.
I love working with children of all age levels especially in the library environment during storytimes. There is so much excitement and exploration, plus music and art are always present, which keeps every day interesting! This session I will be doing the Terrific Three and Four Year Old storytimes and am looking forward to meeting many new faces! 

I thought I would include in my first post on this blog my favorite children’s and young adult literature.

J- Fiction
Ramona Quimby Series  - J Cleary
Growing up my favorite books were the Ramona series by Beverly Clearly. Still very popular today the series is centered around a young girl named Ramona living in Oregon with her family. The first book begins with Ramona starting Kindergarten at age 5 and continues till Ramona is 9 going on age 10 or ‘zero-teen’.
As a young girl I connected with Ramona because she was not quite a “tomboy”, but she was not a “girly-girl” either. Since I was a Third Grader whose headband never seemed to stay on straight, I related to this awkward portrayal of growing up. Beverly Cleary deals with many family issues that are still relevant, including sister rivalry, a family member’s unemployment and the loss of a family pet. Ramona’s wild imagination and crazy antics keep these books poignant and entertaining. 
To play games and find out more information about Ramona and her friends on Kitkat Street check out Beverly Cleary’s website.  (http://www.beverlycleary.com/)

Easy Readers
Elephant and Piggie - E Willems
A new favorite of mine are the Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems. These stories, located in the Easy Reader section, are bright, fun and are sure to put a smile on your face. Whether you are learning the importance to finding a way  to include everyone in play (Can I Play Too?) or just being silly (We are in a Book!) you will love sharing adventures with these unlikely friends! 
Find Elephant and Piggie coloring pages and play games with Mo Willems’ other creative characters at www.gomo.net and  www.pigeonpresents.com.

Young Adult
Divergent Series – YA Roth
The Hunger Games is a very popular series by Suzanne Collins, after reading it like many others I was hungry for more Young Adult with Dystopian elements. I was very excited to find a series by Veronica Roth called Divergent, this trilogy already has the first two books out (Divergent and Insurgent) with the final book being released Fall 2013.  
What I found really neat about this book is that it takes place in Chicago, but not the Chicago we know today. It has been separated into 5 fractions each with their own virtue (bravery, honesty, selflessness, intelligence, peacefulness). On your 16th birthday you are able to switch to a different fraction than the one you were born into. For the main character, Beatrice this is a choice between staying with her family or being who she really is.  Her choice surprises everyone she knows and herself.
Beatrice finds out new things about herself, love, and the society she lives in. Read more about Divergent and Insurgent on Veronica Roth’s blog (http://veronicarothbooks.blogspot.com/)

I hope you enjoy these books as much as I do!