Browsing the New Books: Chapter Books

If April showers have got you stuck indoors, try one of the new books this month! Check out the covers below and click on the links to see the summaries or put them on hold.

Geronimo Stilton: The Last Resort Oasis by Geronimo Stilton

Mia Mayhem is a Superhero! by Kara West

S.O.S.: Society of Substitutes: The Great Escape by Alan Katz

Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories by Jeff Kinney

Wings of Fire: The Dangerous Gift by Tui Sutherland

The Scrumptious Life of Azaleah Lane by Nikki Shannon Smith

Magic Tree House: Camp Time in California by Mary Pope Osborne

Ben Yokoyama and the Cookie of Doom by Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr

The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian: The Fuzzy Apocalypse by Jonathan Messinger

Doggo & Pupper by Katherine Applegate

If You Loved… The Pigeon Books

For more great read-alike suggestions, check out our archive!

Storytime for Littles ONLINE: Garden

Welcome to Storytime for Littles Online! This is our virtual program room and we are so excited for you to explore! Click on the image above to go into the actual program room.

Once inside the program room, you will find a variety of links to click on. Some will lead to videos of me reading or sharing songs. Others will lead to new activities to try at home or even to music videos.

Thank you to Abrams Children’s Books for allowing us to read Abracadabra It’s Spring! Thank you to Charlesbridge for allowing us to read Lola Plants a Garden. Thank you to Simon & Schuster for allowing us to read In a Garden.

Creativity Lab Beadmaking! Instructions and Recap

Today in Creativity Lab, we worked with air-dry clay and made basic beads. I got the idea for beadmaking from the book 3-D Art Lab for Kids: 32 Hands-On Adventures in Sculpture and Mixed Media by Susan Schwake with phototgraphy by Rainer Schwake and adapted the instructions from this book Super simple jewelry : fun and easy-to-make crafts for kids by Karen Latchana Kenney.

If you signed up for the program and received a kit, your kit includes:

  • 5 toothpicks
  • 1 ounce each of air dry clay – blue, red, and yellow
  • 1 random color package of Model Magic (optional)

Today we worked primarily with the air-dry clay.  The Model Magic was available to use if the clay was too hard.

If you don’t have a kit, and you don’t have air-dry clay, you can use Play-Doh, Model Magic, or modeling clay, although it will not dry hard.  

Today we made bumpy beads, tube beads, cube beads, and ball beads.

To get started, we unwrapped our clay and removed a bit from each.

Then we talked about mixing some of the colors to make new ones.  

The clay is hard, and does dry quickly.  Be sure to cover it when you aren’t working with it, and knead it in your hands to warm and soften it.  You might need to add just a little water to your fingers and knead it more if it is too dry. 

If the clay is too dry to work with, switch to using your Model Magic.

Swirly Cube Bead

  1. Begin by taking a bit of clay from two or more colors and mix the colors gently a few times to make a swirl.
  2. Be sure not to overmix or you will end up with just one color!
  3. Shape the clay into a cube.
  4. Push your toothpick carefully through. 
  5. Remove the toothpick, making sure the hole will be large enough for thread.

Tube Beads

  1. Take a small amount of one color of clay and roll it into a cylinder or tube shape. 
  2. Roll out a thin rope of another color of clay. 
  3. Wrap the rope around the center of the cylinder and trim of excess.
  4. Now push the toothpick into the center of the tube so it goes through bead lengthwise.
  5. Remove the toothpick, making sure the hole will be large enough for thread.

Bumpy Beads

  1. Begin by taking a single color of clay and rolling it into a ball. 
  2. Push the toothpick through the center of the ball.
  3. Now select smaller pieces of different colored clay and roll them into smaller balls.
  4. Gently press the smaller balls over the larger one.
  5. Remove the toothpick, making sure the hole will be large enough for thread.

Swirly Ball Bead

  1. Start with two or three colors of clay.
  2. Roll the bead into a ball, being careful not to overmix.
  3. Carefully push your toothpick through the center.
  4. Remove the toothpick, making sure the hole will be large enough for thread.

A printable copy of these instructions can be found here

Join us next month on May 13th in Creativity Lab where we will be doing tissue paper printing. You can register here!

Browsing the New Books – Nonfiction

We have lots of new nonfiction books this month!

The book of dares : 100 ways for boys to be kind, bold, and brave / Ted Bunch and Anna Marie Johnson Teague with A Call to Men

This is your time / Ruby Bridges

Escape at 10,000 feet : D.B. Cooper and the missing money / by Tom Sullivan

The Black friend : on being a better white person / Frederick Joseph

So embarrassing : awkward moments and how to get through them / Charise Mericle Harper

Chance : escape from the Holocaust / Uri Shulevitz

Feathered serpent and the five suns : a Mesoamerican creation myth / Duncan Tonatiuh

Where does my poo go? / Jo Lindley

Feel the fog / April Pulley Sayre

The magic of sleep / written and illustrated by Vicky Woodgate

Modern art explorer : with 30 artworks from the Centre Pompidou / Alice Harman ; illustrated by Serge Bloch

StoryWorlds : a moment in time / created by Thomas Hegbrook
The radium girls : the scary but true story of the poison that made people glow in the dark 
/ Kate Moore

First friend : how dogs evolved from wolves to become our best friends / written by Kersten Hamilton ; illustrated by Jaime Kim

Seven voyages : how China’s treasure fleet conquered the sea / Laurence Bergreen & Sara Fray

Puberty is gross but also really awesome / by Gina Loveless ; illustrated by Lauri Johnston

Tiny monsters : the strange creatures that live on us, in us, and around us / Steven Jenkins and Robin Page

Kitchen cabinet science projects : fifty amazing science experiments to make with everyday ingredients / by Dr. Michelle Dicknson

How we got to the moon : the people, technology, and daring feats of science behind humanity’s greatest adventure / John Rocco

What’s inside a flower? : and other questions about science & nature / by Rachel Ignotofsk

Swish! : the slam-dunking, alley-ooping, high-flying Harlem Globetrotters / written by Suzanne Slade ; illustrated by Don Tate

Nicky & Vera : a quiet hero of the Holocaust and the children he rescued / Peter Sís

Into the forest : wander through our woodland world / Christiane Dorion ; illustrated by Jane McGuinness

Hello world : a celebration of languages and curiosities / by Jonathan Litton ; illustrated by L’Atelier Cartographik

Timelines from Black history : leaders, legends, legacies / [writer and consultant, Mireille Harper]

Storytime For Littles Online: Spring!

Welcome to Storytime for Littles Online! This is our virtual program room and we are so excited for you to explore! Click on the image above to go into the actual program room. This week we are heading down to the farm!

Once inside the program room, you will find a variety of links to click on. Some will lead to videos of me reading or sharing songs. Others will lead to new activities to try at home or even to music videos.

Thank you to Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers for allowing us to read Wake Up, It’s Spring! by Lisa Campbell Ernst. Thank you to Little, Brown, and Company for allowing us to read The Spring Book by Todd Parr. Thank you to the Macmillan Publishing for allowing us to read And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano and illustrated by Erin E. Stead.

Five on Friday

Hello and happy Friday! Spring has finally sprung and I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t be happier about it. But without further ado, here’s what’s new and what’s newsworthy in children’s literature.

  1. It’s likely you’ve already heard about Dr. Seuss’s publishers decision to no longer print six of his older titles for problematic material, but if not The New York Times has summarized the controversy.
  2. The Associated Press reports that racial diversity in children’s books is growing, but slowly. Children’s books written by authors of color increased 3% from 2019 to 2020 and books about racially diverse characters or subjects increased 1% during the same time period. The gains are disappointingly small, but as the author points out, it takes years for a book to be published so progress made in 2020 won’t likely be seen until 2022 or 2023.
  3. The New York Times had an interesting breakdown in the differences in how children read books vs on screen.
  4. Actor Idris Elba has signed a multiple book deal with HarperCollins to write children’s books. We don’t have any details yet, but the first of the titles will be published next year.
  5. Children’s books written by celebrities are very hit or miss, but here’s a list you definitely should check out! I’d also add The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak, which is hilarious.

And that’s all for this month’s Five on Friday! I hope you all enjoyed checking out what’s new in the kidlit world. Be sure to check back in May for the next Five on Friday.