Latest Event Updates

New! Playaway audio books at CML

Posted on Updated on

file2611260897618A new audio book collection for kids and adults is coming to Cedar Mill Libraries starting September 20. Playaways are portable, self-contained units containing a single audio title. They have easy-to-use volume buttons and can be adapted to play in your car. Just add batteries, plug in your ear buds and listen away…The juvenile playaway collection will be located at the beginning of our juvenile audio. We have popular titles such as The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, Magic Treehouse, 39 Clues, and more.

We’ll have a Tech Petting Zoo at our 40th Anniversary celebration on Sept. 20 featuring Playaways, or you can watch a video from Playaway for more info. Stop by and check one out.

3 Secrets for Finding Beginning Chapter Books

Posted on Updated on

????????????????????Your child has read all the Amelia Bedelia, Frog and Toad, or Nate the Great books. What’s next?? Puzzled as to how to find an appropriate beginning chapter book?  Today I’ll share 3 secrets which might help you find the next best book.

Secret #1: Look for orange tape in the Juvenile Fiction collection. Easier books have the orange tape on a spine label.

Secret #2: Open a book to see the font size, number of pages, and pictures. Good transition books will have a slightly bigger font than regular longer chapter books and include some pictures.

Secret #3: Five fingers rule: Open the book to page #2 or higher and let your child read one page. Hold up a finger for each unfamiliar word. 4 or 5 – too many. Your child will not feel comfortable with this book. 0 to 2 – maybe the book is not challenging enough. 3 unfamiliar words = a good choice!

Remember: Beginning readers need to re-read books as well, so if they ask for the same title, let them have it! They need to feel confident and able to say: “I read this book in ONE DAY!” And this is possible only when they know a book very well.  More tips how to find “Just Right” Books from Reading Rockets -Marta

Here are ten appealing beginning chapter book series for young readers:

GoofballsGoofballs by Tony Abbott

Roscoe Riley RulesRoscoe Riley Rules by Katherine Applegate

Magic PuppyMagic Puppy by Sue Bentley

Heidi HeckelbeckHeidi Heckelbeck by Wanda Coven

Mercy WatsonMercy Watson by Kate DiCamillo

Diamonde DanielDyamonde Daniel by Nikki Grimes

Zapato PowerZapato Power by Jacqueline Jules

Missy's Super DuperMissy’s Super Duper Royal Deluxe by Susan Nees

Galaxy ZackGalaxy Zack by Ray O’Ryan

Greetings from SomewhereGreetings from Somewhere by Harper Paris

Beginning Graphic Novel Series for Kids

Posted on Updated on

Beginning Graphic NovelsWhen I used to think of comic books, I thought of superheroes and characters I knew from TV and movies. Today comic books and graphic novels have exploded in the literary world to include non-fiction, classic novels, and adventures in various genres, making them popular with readers of all ages.

Maligned as “not real books,” comic books and graphic novels have suffered a bad reputation because of their illustrated panels with minimal language. Surprising to many adults, they are also great tools for helping children learn to read and even meet Common Core Standard State mandates. Recent literacy studies show that graphic novels and comic books are actually a boon to literacy and help children bridge gaps in their confidence and vocabulary when it comes to reading. Reluctant readers may find the concise wording and images more accessible than a traditional novel. Use of expressive images and fonts give the stories a more interactive feel and help introduce children to different genres and can even be paired with traditional novels to increase understanding. Graphic novels now feature non-fiction subjects, making them visual treats for young learners.

Some fun graphic novel series to start with:

Babymouse (series) by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm: Highly imaginative and creative, Babymouse is a hero for even the most boring situations. Transforming the monotonous to dramatic adventures, Babymouse makes everyday life as kid interesting.

Flying Beaver Brothers (series) by Maxwell Eaton: Ace and Bub like naps, surfing, and avoiding the Bruce. Their adventures poke fun at traditional cartoon tropes and provide lots of comic relief.

Owly (series) by Andy Runton: Nearly wordless, the Owly series follows a little owl and his friends through various tales using illustrations and symbols. This series gives readers the opportunity to develop their story telling skills by identifying the story through the panels and retell it in their own words.

Mr. Badger and Mrs. Fox (series) by Brigitte Luciani and Eve Tharlet: Ginger Fox and her mom move in with Mr. Badger and his children. Explores the dynamics of blended families using woodland creatures.

Toon Book Series – great early graphic novel series that features reading levels similar to an early reader system in the newer books. Examples of this series include:

The big wet balloon by Ricardo Liniers Siri

Otto’s Backwards Day by Frank Cammuso

Benny and Penny (series) by Geoffrey Hayes

Stop by the children’s reference desk at Cedar Mill Community Library for a copy of Raising a Reader! How Comics and Graphic Novels Can Help Your Kids Love to Read! by Meryl Jaffe, PhD. (while supplies last).  More recommendations here from or check out the graphic novel review website, “No Flying No Tights”  -Nicole


Cedar Mill Reads: Education – A Hot Topic for Cooling Days

Posted on Updated on

Originally posted on Quick Picks from CMCL:

Cedar Mill Newsletter for September 2, 2014

Now that kids are going back to school, their education is on our minds. Are they developing a love of reading? Are they thinking creatively? Are they getting the best education possible? How does education in the United States compare with education around the world? Whether you have children of your own or not, I hope you find something on this list that interests you. – Laura B.

The Smartest Kids in the World: And How They Got That Way The Smartest Kids in the World: And How They Got That Way
ByRipley, Amanda
2013-08 – Simon & Schuster
Check Our Catalog
Through the compelling stories of three American teenagers living abroad and attending the world’s topnotch public high schools, an investigative reporter and author of “The Unthinkable” explains how these systems cultivate the “smartest” kids on the planet. …More
How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character

View original 1,207 more words

Grandparents Day

Posted on Updated on

PicMonkey Collage grandparentsGrandparents Day is this Sunday, September 7. It’s a great time to celebrate and appreciate our grandparents, great aunts, great uncles, as well as older friends and neighbors. Here are some of our favorite books about grandparents.  -Jenny F.
Grandmother and I by Helen Elizabeth Buckley
A child considers how Grandmother’s lap is just right for those times when lightning is coming in the window or the cat is missing.

Abuela by Arthur Dorros
While riding on a bus with her grandmother, a little girl imagines that they are carried up into the sky and fly over the sights of New York City.

Grandpa Green by Lane Smith
A child explores the ordinary life of his extraordinary great-grandfather, as expressed in his topiary garden. There are many things that Grandpa Green can’t remember about his life anymore, but the garden remembers for him.

Loop the Loop by Barbara Dugan
A young girl and an old woman form a friendship that lasts even after the woman enters a nursing home.

Nana Upstairs, Nana Downstairs by Tomie DePaola
Four-year-old Tommy enjoys his relationship with both his grandmother and great-grandmother, but eventually learns to face their inevitable death.

I call My Grandpa Papa by Ashley Wolff
Students respond, in rhyming text, to their teacher’s question about what each calls his or her grandfather, offering examples of things they like to do together.

Abuelita’s Heart by Amy Cordova
Before returning to the city with her parents, a young girl walks with her grandmother, learning about the special feelings, places, and plants that are part of her heritage and the Southwestern desert where Abuelita lives.

Dear Juno by Soyung Pak
Although Juno, a Korean American boy, cannot read the letter he receives from his grandmother in Seoul, he understands what it means from the photograph and dried flower that are enclosed and decides to send a similar letter back to her.

Tea With Grandpa by Barney Saltzberg
A little girl and her grandfather share a cup of tea every day at half past three even though they live far apart. Here’s a granddaughter-grandfather relationship for the 21st century –complete with Internet connection.

Oy Feh So? by Cary Fagan
Every Sunday Aunt Essy, Aunt Chanah and Uncle Sam drop by for a visit. All they ever say is “Oy,” “Fey,” “So” and the kids decide they’ve finally had enough…

The Grandma Book by Todd Parr
Presents the different ways grandmothers show their grandchildren love, from offering advice and babysitting to making things and giving lots of kisses. Also, try The Grandpa Book by Todd Parr.

Turtle Bay by Saviour Pirotta
Is old Jiro-San weird or wise? He sweeps the sand with a broom, listens to what the wind has to say and waits and waits for “his old friends” to arrive. Young Taro trusts that Jiro-San is wise and helps him prepare the beach for the Japanese sea turtles who come to lay their eggs on the beach.

It’s About a Little Bird by Jessica Lange
Visiting their grandmother’s farm, sisters Ilse and Adah discover a mysterious birdcage and learn about their grandmother’s journeys through Paris and Rome.

Grandfather’s  Journey by Allen Say
A Japanese American man recounts his grandfather’s journey to America which he later also undertakes, and the feelings of being torn by a love for two different countries.

How to Babysit a Grandpa by Jean Reagan
A little boy provides instructions for properly babysitting one’s grandfather, such as offering him tasty treats and entertaining him with special games. Also try How to Babysit a Grandma.

More Resources:

More books about grandparents from the American Grandparents’ Association
Even more stories about grandparents 
Easy ways to stay connected to grandparents







Back to School Lunch Crunch

Posted on Updated on

Eating boy & big sister DreamstimeSummer is typically a time of carefree days and relaxed schedules, but once school begins, a little more planning is usually required. It can be hard to jump back into a busy routine, and making your kid’s lunch every day can challenge even the most creative cooks. Here are some suggestions for tasty lunches to help get the school year off to a good start! -Ginny W.

Cool Lunches to Make & Take: Easy Recipes for Kids to Cook by Lisa Wagner

Weelicious Lunches: Think Outside the Lunch Box with More than 160 Happier Meals by Catherine McCord

Beating the Lunch Box Blues: Fresh Ideas for Lunches on the Go by J.M. Hirsch

Best Lunch Box Ever: Ideas and Recipes for School Lunches Kids Will Love by Katie Sullivan Morford

Cooking With Trader Joe’s Cookbook: Pack a Lunch! By Celine Cossou-Bordes

The Paleo Kid Lunch Box: 27 Kid-Approved Recipes that Make Lunchtime a Breeze by Kate Evans Scott

Stealth Health Lunches Kids Love: Irresistible and Nutritious Gluten-Free Sandwiches, Wraps and Other Easy Eats by Tracy Griffith

Vegan Lunch Box: 130 Amazing, Animal-Free Lunches Kids and Grown-Ups Will Love by Jennifer McCann

Yum-Yum Bento Box: Fresh Recipes for Adorable Lunches by Crystal Watanabe and Maki Ogawa

Everyday Bento: 50 Cute and Yummy Lunches to Go by Wendy Thorpe Copley

School Lunches

Just for Fun: Websites and Books

Funky Lunch: a gallery of photos with some of the most amazing sandwiches you have ever seen.

Lunchboxdad: how to make a Minion out of a banana … and so much more!

Lunch Lady (graphic novel series) by Jarrett Krosoczka: Who really works in the school cafeteria? They are not just in there making lunches.

Pete the Cat: Pete’s Big Lunch by James Dean: What happens when the sandwich Pete makes gets so big he can’t eat it?





Back-to-School Picture Books

Posted on Updated on

The end of summer vacation is near, which means it’s almost back-to-school time. Ease your child’s transition from summer to school with these great new and new-ish picture books!

Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School Amelia Bedelia’s First Day of School
Parish, Herman Illustrator Avril, Lynne   Check Our Catalog Since 1963, Amelia Bedelia, the housekeeper for the Rogers family, has been entertaining generations of readers. Now, for the first time, she stars in her own full-size picture book as a little girl on her first day of school. Full color. …More
Dinosaur vs. School Dinosaur vs. School
Shea, Bob Illustrator Shea, Bob    Check Our Catalog Dinosaur is starting preschool today. ROAR There are new friends to meet, dress-up outfits to wear, glitter and googly eyes to paste, musical instruments to play, and snacks to eat. What’s not to like? But then, oh, no It’s Dinosaur vs. Clean-up Time Fortunately, when friends work together, EVERYONE WINS With all the bright colors, bold lines, and toddler-like exuberance that have …More
Foxy Foxy
Dodd, Emma    Check Our Catalog Emily is starting school tomorrow, and she’s worried that she won’t have everything she needs. Luckily, Foxy comes to her rescue! Foxy is a fox with a magical talent: anything he needs, he can produce instantly from his tail. Unfortunately, sometimes he gets things a little mixed up! Full color. …More
The Invisible Boy The Invisible Boy
Ludwig, Trudy Illustrator Barton, Patrice    Check Our Catalog Awards:Black-Eyed Susan Award (2015), Kentucky Bluegrass Award (2015), Washington Children’s Choice Picture Book Award (2015)Brian has always felt invisible at school, but when a new student, Justin, arrives, everything changes. From esteemed author and speaker Ludwig and acclaimed illustrator Barton, this gentle story shows how small acts of kindness can help children feel included and allow them to flourish. Full color. …More
Kitty Cat, Kitty Cat, Are You Going to School? Kitty Cat, Kitty Cat, Are You Going to School?
Martin, Bill, Jr. Author Sampson, Michael Illustrator Bryant, Laura J.    Check Our Catalog On the first day of school, Kitty Cat discovers that there are lots of things to enjoy. She plays, she enjoys a snack, she paints, she sings, she listens to a story, and she shares something special during Show-and-Tell. The day ends with a big hug from her mom. Children will love Laura J. Bryant’s appealing illustrations that bring Kitty Cat to life, along with the other adorable kittens at …More
Little Lola Little Lola
Saab, Julie Illustrator Gothard, David    Check Our Catalog Little Lola is curious about everything . . . especially school. What is school like? Find out when Lola the cat heads to school herself and gets a paw (or two) into just about everything. Lively, funny, irresistible, and mischievous, Lola will appeal to fans of Olivia and Peppa Pig. When an apple hits Lola the cat on the head and wakes her up, she knows it is going…More
Mom, It's My First Day of Kindergarten! Mom, It’s My First Day of Kindergarten!
Yum, Hyewon    Check Our Catalog Awards:Alabama Camellia Award (2014), Ezra Jack Keats Book Award (2013)It’s a child’s first day of kindergarten, but who is worried about all the new people and the different things he’ll meet–the child? No! The mother. In a refreshing reversal of roles, the child takes it upon himself to comfort and reassure his mother that everything will be fine. …More
Monstergarten Monstergarten
Mahoney, Daniel J. Illustrator Kaminsky, Jef    Check Our Catalog Patrick is worried about his first day of monstergarten. Everyone has to be “scary” in monstergarten. Patrick’s friend, Kevin, offers to show Patrick how to be scary. They roar, they sneak up on people, they bare their teeth. But Patrick still isn’t ready. His parents tell him to just be himself. But what if he’s not scary “enough?” Full color. …More
Monsters Love School Monsters Love School
Austin, Mike Illustrator Austin, Mike    Check Our Catalog Summer is over, and now it’s time for the biggest adventure of all – Monster School. Join these hilarious, energetic monsters as they go to school for the first time in author-illustrator Mike Austin’s picture-book sequel to ‘Monsters Love Colors’. Reading and writing and learning your monster history has never been so much fun …More
My Teacher Is a Monster! (No, I Am Not.) My Teacher Is a Monster! (No, I Am Not.)
Brown, Peter  Check Our Catalog A young boy named Bobby has the worst teacher. She’s loud, she yells, and if you throw paper airplanes, she won’t allow you to enjoy recess. She is a monster Luckily, Bobby can go to his favorite spot in the park on weekends to play. Until one day… he finds his teacher there Over the course of one day, Bobby learns that monsters are not always what they seem.Each page is …More
Noni Is Nervous Noni Is Nervous
Hartt-Sussman, Heather Illustrator Cote, Genevieve    Check Our Catalog A unique hardcover picture book for two to five year olds, this is the story of a lovely little girl who is nervous about many things. Noni finds a way to control her nerves and work through her anxiety, making life much more bearable for everyone! …More
Oliver and His Alligator Oliver and His Alligator
Schmid, Paul Illustrator Schmid, Paul    Check Our Catalog Oliver is nervous about the first day of school, so he picks up an alligator at the swamp, just in case. And boy, does it come in handy! Whenever anything scares Oliver, the alligator makes the problem go away. Quickly, school becomes much simpler . . . and a little lonely. Full color. …More
Otto Goes to School Otto Goes to School
Parr, Todd    Check Our Catalog The first day of school is both scary and exciting for Otto. At first, he is very nervous, but then he realizes how much fun school can be. Parr’s bold illustrations and simple text are the perfect fit for children just starting their reading journey. Full color. …More
Planet Kindergarten Planet Kindergarten
Ganz-Schmitt, Sue Illustrator Prigmore, Shane    Check Our Catalog This clever picture book will prepare young explorers to boldly go where they have never gone before: Planet Kindergarten. Suit up for a daring adventure as our hero navigates the unknown reaches and alien inhabitants of this strange new world. Hilarious and confidence-boosting, this exciting story will have new kindergarteners ready for liftoff …More
You're Wearing That to School?! You’re Wearing That to School?!
Plourde, Lynn Illustrator Cornelison, Sue    Check Our Catalog Penelope is so excited about the first day of school that she’s doing her happy hippo dance. She can’t wait to wear her rainbow sparkle outfit. “Oh, no, no!” says her best pal Tiny, who started school last year. He has a few tips for Penelope about fitting in without sticking out. Full color. …More