Latest Event Updates

WiserKids Blog is moving!

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 We’re moving in June! WiserKids will soon be incorporated into the Cedar Mill Community Library’s new website, coming soon. We’ll have a new look, but we’ll continue to bring you great information to help the kids in your life grow, learn, read, play and explore at the library and beyond.

Coming Soon! Summer Reading at Cedar Mill Libraries

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We have a fun-filled Summer Reading Program planned for you starting June 1st!

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“Every Hero Has a Story!” is the 2015 theme for kids. “Unmask!” is the teen theme. Youth of all ages can sign up for the Summer Reading Program from June 1st- August 1st at either location. Summer Reading has many proven benefits. It’s a chance for kids to read for enjoyment, maintain reading and comprehension skills while out of school, and participate in free library activities and events that support learning and family fun.

Children from birth to 18 years choose to read (or be read to) and determine their own reading goal. Beginning July 14 participants can claim prizes including a free reward book, and Blazers Game and Oaks Park discounts.

We now have copies of our SRP schedule at the library, so pick one up next time you’re in (or follow the links below). We’ll post more detailed info soon.  We can’t wait to see you at the library this summer!

Cedar Mill Main:  CML 2015 SR schedule

Bethany: CMLB 2015 SR schedule

Here’s a preview of some the events and activities we will offer:

 

Sock Stories for National Lost Sock Memorial Day

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Sock Stories1Where do socks go when they fail to show?  If the lost sock could talk would it tell us where it walked?  Why do they get lost by themselves, never in pairs?  Why is the lost sock always from the pair you wanted to wear?  Why, oh why, do socks like to strike out on their own?  May 9 is National Lost Sock Memorial Day!  Remember favorite missing footwear and read some stories about socks. –Ginny W.

Have You Seen My New Blue Socks? by Eve Bunting When Duck loses his pair of brand new blue socks he asks Mr. Fox and Mr. Ox  and his friends the Peacocks if they have seen them.  Then Duck makes a happy discovery.

Duck Sock Hop by Jane Kohuth Dancing ducks and decorated socks meet once a week for a wild sock hop.  And when the dance ends and the socks are worn out?   Make a visit to the Duck Sock Shop to get ready for the next sock hop.

Dirty Joe, the Pirate: a True Story by Bill Harley Dirty Joe is a sock-stealing scallywag who meets his match, Stinky Annie.  She and her crew like to steal underpants.  When they meet on the high seas, the battle is on for undergarments until Joe and Annie recognize each other from somewhere!socks-466138_640

Where’s My Sock? by Joyce Dunbar Pippin is missing his yellow sock with clocks and Tog offers to help him look.   They embark on a “serious sock hunt” with a funny result.

A Pair of Socks by Stuart J. Murphy A lonely sock is looking for its’ mate and searches the house trying to find it.  With some help from a puppy things are put right.  A perfect title to introduce the concept of matching to preschoolers.

New Socks by Bob Shea The first picture book by the talented Bob Shea.  Chicken gets a new pair of orange socks which change his world.  Be sure and take a peek at the funny film clip of those orange socks on Bob Shea’s website.

Parenting Power Tools: Talking To Your Kids

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Parenting Power toolsWhile most parents would like to to be described as open and communicative by their kids, busy days and full schedules can twist our lines of communication. This makes talking to our kids problematic.

In How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish, the authors’ personal, sincere approach gives parents strategies for listening and talking to their kids during trying situations. Their advice and information is clear and easy to understand. They cover many scenarios using “real-life situations to show how you can respect and respond to your child’s feelings and satisfy your own needs.” – Wendy

How to TalkHere’s one example from the book worth mentioning:

Instead of Punishment…

Express your feelings strongly – without attacking character.

“I’m furious that my new saw was left outside to rust in the rain!”

State your expectations.

“I expect my tools to be returned after they’ve been borrowed.”

Show the child how to make amends.

“What this saw needs now is a little steel wool and a lot of elbow grease”

Offer a choice.

“You can borrow my tools and return them or you can give up the privilege of using them.  You decide.”

Take action.

Child: “Why is the toolbox locked?”

Father: “You tell me why.”

Problem-solve.

“What can we work out so that you can use my tools when you need them, and so that I’ll be sure they’re there when I need them?”

 

 

Celebrating Earth Day with School Age Kids and Teens

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“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” -Jane Goodall

If you think about it, every day is Earth Day! Try the books and websites below and find a way to make a difference in the world! These are wonderful choices for upper elementary school age and older.

Books for Older Kids and Teens

Non-Fiction

Tracking trash: flotsam, jetsam, and the science of ocean motion by Loree Griffin Burns
Describes the work of a man who tracks trash as it travels great distances by way of ocean currents.

The Manatee Scientists: Saving Vulnerable Species by Peter Lourie
Highlights the work scientists are doing to protect the manatee, an endangered species.

The Gorilla Doctors: Saving Endangered Great Apes by Pamela Turner
Mountain gorillas are one of the most endangered species in the world. Now they are facing a new threat, from the very tourism that is helping to protect them: exposure to human disease. This is the story of the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project and its work to provide medical care to the gorillas.

Hive Detectives: Chronicle of a Honey Bee Catastrophe by Loree Griffin Burns
Join bee keepers and bee scientists as the investigate the deadly scourge of today’s bee populations-hive colapse.

The Chimpanzees I Love: Saving Their World and Ours by Jane Goodall
Dr. Jane Goodall recounts the exciting adventure of her work with chimpanzees, now an endangered species.

Fiction

Hoot by Carl Hiaasen
Roy, who is new to his small Florida community, becomes involved in another boy’s attempt to save a colony of burrowing owls from a proposed construction site.

Scat by Carl Hiaasen
Nick and his friend Marta decide to investigate when a mysterious fire starts near a Florida wildlife preserve and an unpopular teacher goes missing.

Flush by Carl Hiaasen
With their father jailed for sinking a river boat, Noah Underwood and his younger sister, Abbey, must gather evidence that the owner of this floating casino is emptying his bilge tanks into the protected waters around their Florida Keys home.

Threatened by Eliot Schrefer
Luc is an orphan, until he meets a Professor who claims to be studying chimpanzees, and they head off into the jungle–but when the Professor disappears, Luc has to fend for himself and join forces with the chimps to save their forest.

Online Resources

Earth Day Printables from TIME for Kids: Read about Earth Day projects, calculate your daily water use, learn about sources of energy in the U.S., and more! (K-6)

The Greening STEM Toolkit from the National Envirionmental Education Foundation. This is a 20 page PDF document full of ideas to increase environmental knowledge in K-12 students. It includes projects on gardens, climate, weather, energy efficiency and water resources.

Jane Goodall Institute Learn how to take action helping the environment in your community through the Roots and Shoots program.

-Jenny F.

Celebrate Earth Day with Young Kids!

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“If a child is to keep his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in.” -Rachel Carson

Celebrate Earth Day by getting outside, learning about plants, animals and the environment, and by sharing some good books with the young children in your life.  Here are some titles that encourage environmental protection, a love of nature, and an appreciation of wild animals and plants. Enjoy!

Picture Books

The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
In this classic environmental tale, the Once-ler describes the results of the local pollution problem.

The Earth and I by Frank Asch
A child explains how he and the Earth dance and sing together and take turns listening to each other.

Sun is My Favorite Star by Frank Asch
Celebrates a child’s love of the sun and the wondrous ways in which it helps the earth and the life upon it.

The Other Way to Listen by Byrd Baylor
If you have the time, you might just be able to hear wildflower seeds burst open or a cactus bloom in the dark. You just have to listen.

The Secret Place by Eve Bunting
A young boy finds a patch of wilderness in the city.

Emeraldalicious by Victoria Kann
Recycling magic turns a garbage-filled park into a “greentastic” garden.

Little Lions by Jim Arnosky (see other titles by this author)
On a rocky ledge, two baby mountain lions play and purr and meow under the protection of their mother.

The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry
The many different animals that live in a great kapok tree in the Brazilian rainforest try to convince a man with an ax of the importance of not cutting down their home.

In the Tall, Tall Grass by Denise Fleming (and others)
Enjoy seeing the tiny creatures who live in the grass through a toddler’s point of view.

Miss Maple’s Seeds by Eliza Wheeler
Miss Maple gathers lost seeds and takes care of them until they are ready to be released out into the world.

It’s Earth Day Little Critter by Mercer Mayer: Join Little Critter as he celebrates Earth Day.
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Easy Non-fiction for Young Children

Rachel Carson and Her Book that Changed the World by Laurie Lawlor
Retells the story of Rachel Carson, a pioneering environmentalist who wrote and published “Silent Spring,” the revolutionary book pointing out the dangerous effects of chemicals on the living world.

The Watcher: Jane Goodall’s Life with the Chimps by Jeanette Winter
This book traces the life and career of Jane Goodall as a watcher of English fauna to her adult work as scholar of animal behavior in Africa.

Cactus Hotel by Brenda Guiberson
Describes the life cycle of the giant saguaro cactus, with an emphasis on its role as a home for other desert dwellers.

Rainforest by Helen Cowcher (and others)
From the tapirs roaming its cool floor to the Blue Morpho butterflies fluttering in its canopy, the rain forest is a peaceful place until man’s machines endanger its existence.

(Book descriptions from WCCLS Catalog).

Online Resources

Be a Nature Detective –ideas for young children from No Time for Flashcards Blog

50 Simple Outdoor Activities from No Time for Flashcards Blog

Going Green at Home: Get Your Child Involved from NAEYC for Families

-Jenny F.

It’s National Poetry Month! Featuring Kid-Friendly Poetry

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(This is a repost from last year. Happy National Poetry Month!)

In honor of National Poetry Month in April, we’re featuring poetry for young children, ages 2-8 years. Exposing young children to poetry helps build a very valuable early literacy skill called phonological awareness, or the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words, such as rhymes and syllables. The ability to recognize and play with rhyming words is important as it helps children sound out words when they begin to learn to read in elementary school.

These picture books contain beautiful illustrations and poems from favorite authors on a variety of topics: a toddler’s day, bedtime, bees, books, clothes that animals wear, solving plot riddles, twins, cats, dogs and…more cats! Enjoy!   -Marianne

Switchingonthemoon

Switching on the Moon: A Very First Book of Bedtime Poems, collected by Jane Yolen and Andrew Fusek Peters:  A wide range of well-known writers contribute to this collection of bedtime poems featuring topics such as night-time noises, images and bedtime rituals.

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Spot the Plot: A Riddle Book of Book Riddles by J. Patrick Lewis:  Children and parents will enjoy naming the familiar stories based on plot clues and clever illustrations.

iamthebook

I Am the Book: poems by Yayo:  A book is an amazing adventure. These poems written by well known writers such as Jane Yolen, etc. celebrate the journeys and adventures that books inspire.

taketwotwins

Take Two!: A Celebration of Twins by J. Patrick Lewis:  Original poems that pay homage to twins in a beautiful collection, including fun facts.

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I’m Small and Other Verses by Lilian Moore: This book is a celebration of the joys of childhood, great for individual lap time or sharing as a group.

unbeelievables

UnBEElievables: Honeybee Poems and Paintings by Douglas Florian:  “Come inside the honeycomb–a busy, buzzy, bee-filled home–and learn about the unexpected wonders of these tiny insects’ lifestyles, families, and communities. In fourteen funny, fact-filled honeybee poems and paintings, Douglas Florian explores the natural history of these often-unappreciated critters, revealing them to be a totally cool–and totally important part of our ecosystem.” -Amazon.com

buttonup

Button Up!: Wrinkled Rhymes by Alice Schertle:  A unique collection of poems told from the perspective of various articles of clothing- one that will inspire lots of smiles and laughter.

pugandanimalpoems

Pug and Other Animal Poems by Valerie Worth:  “In the follow-up to the well-received Animal Poems, Pug: And Other Animal Poems examines a wide range of animal behavior, from the fleetingness of a fly sipping spilled milk to the constant steely presence of a powerful bull; the greedy meal of a street rat to a cat’s quiet gift of a dead mouse on the doorstep. Steve Jenkins’s bright collage art brings these small moments to life” -Amazon.com

beessnailspeacocktails

Bees, Snails & Peacock Tails: Patterns & Shapes…Naturally by Betsy Franco and Steve Jenkins:  “The duo behind Birdsongs (2007) teams up again in this winning introduction to the patterns and shapes found in the natural world. From the dazzling eyes of the male peacock’s feathers to the hexagonal chambers of the bee’s hive, Franco’s spirited poems explore the many forms and functions of nature’s geometry”. -from Booklist starred review

dogku

Dogku by Andrew Clements: “Wandering through the neighborhood in the early-morning hours, a stray pooch follows his nose to a back-porch door. After a bath and some table scraps from Mom, the dog meets three lovable kids. It’s all wags and wiggles until Dad has to decide if this stray pup can become the new family pet. Has Mooch finally found a home? Told entirely in haiku by master storyteller Andrew Clements, this delightful book is a clever fusion of poetry and puppy dog”. -Amazon.com

catpoems

Cat Poems by Dave Crawley:  “Cats: They wake you up at dawn, nap on your lap, perch on the book you’re reading, and sometimes act as though they don’t know you. They are a constant source of puzzlement—and joy. In this collection of poems, Dave Crawley pays tribute to the fabulous, finicky felines he has known and loved since childhood”. -Amazon.com

curiouscollectioncats

A Curious Collection of Cats by Betsy Franco:  “Words and pictures blend in these concrete poems about cats, written in forms that include haiku, limerick, and free verse. Once kids get the feel of how to follow the lines—up and down or in curving jumps or around the page borders––they will have fun with the playful images”. – Booklist

dazzlingdisplaydogs

A Dazzling Display of Dogs by Betsy Franco:  “From the award-winning team behind A Curious Collection of Cats comes a new collection of visual poems celebrating all things canine—from obedience school, to backyard break outs, to flatulent Fidos”. –Amazon.com