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Gingerbread Men, Friends, & Pirates

What a fun Storytime we had reading about gingerbread people this day after Christmas! First we read Gingerbread Friends by Jan Brett, about a Gingerbread Baby who rides a chicken to a bakery to make some new friends. Then we read The Gingerbread Boy by Richard Egielski, the classic tale but set in a city - so the Gingerbread Boy runs away from people like construction workers! Finally, we read The Gingerbread Pirates, about the Christmas Eve adventures of Captain Cookie and his crew.
For a craft, we cut gingerbread boy shapes from brown paper, then decorated them with yarn, sequins, pompoms, crayons and other embellishments. 
Later we danced to this song, running in place when we heard "Run, run as fast as you can, you can't catch me I'm the Gingerbread Man!" Listen - and dance along!

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Happy Christmas!


Track Santa's progress as he travels the globe on Christmas Eve! 


Merry Christmas from The Gordon-Nash Library!

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Some Christmas Mice

Today we heard four stories about mice at Christmastime. We began with If You Take A Mouse to the Movies, a funny story about a mouse who moves from one activity to another, and another, and another! Together at Christmas is a story of ten little mice, out in the cold at Christmastime, and an important lesson they learn about friendship. The Gingerbread Mouse was about a mouse who finds a new home in the house of some neighbors. And The Tale of the Christmas Mouse is about a helpful little critter who makes Santa's job a little easier.

Here's our craft - Christmas mice! As you can see, there was a lot of choice involved regarding mice features. But all have a candy cane tail! We also made pipe cleaner candy canes - just in case the real candy cane somehow got eaten!
We sang "Where is Santa" to the tune of "Are You Sleeping?":
Where is Santa? Where is Santa? (hands behind back)
Here I am! Here I am! (arms out in front making a belly shape!)
Merry, Merry Christmas!
Merry, Merry, Christmas! (keep arms up through the rest of the song!)
Ho - Ho - Ho!, Ho - Ho - Ho!
And we sang "Jingle Bells" - with jingle bells! Click below to listen!
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"Secret" Santa!

Santa Claus has been portrayed in many Christmas books and has been drawn by many artists. Can you tell which children's book illustrators drew these jolly old St. Nicks? Click on the picture to make it bigger if necessary. Leave your answers in the comment section by clicking on this post's speech bubble!



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The Night Before Christmas

When you visit us, be sure to take a look at the display cases at the back of the library. Featured this month are many different copies of The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore. Each copy displayed is illustrated by a different artist. This collection has been almost forty years in the making and is offered to us this month by a special patron. Ho-ho-ho! Check it out!
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Almost Christmas!

Despite today's cold temperatures, our story time was full of warmth and Christmas cheer! We read four books about Christmas, including Duck & Goose Time for Christmas (with a tactile cover!), and a lift-the-flap book about Corduroy's Christmas. After our craft, we read Bear Stays Up for Christmas and Where is Christmas, Jesse Bear? Both books dealt a lot with preparations for getting ready for Christmas. And both books showed Santa!

We transformed plain white cardboard stocking shapes into unique and special ornaments for our Christmas trees. Stockings were decorated with crayons, Christmas stickers, sequins, and pompoms. Names were attached at the top, written on each child's favorite color of paper. We had lots of extra stickers, so children took them home!


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Author & Illustrator: Jan Brett

Have you ever noticed how many books by author and illustrator Jan Brett have winter time for a setting? Jan Brett must love winter! She has also illustrated many books with a Christmas theme. Here are the ones we have in the Children's Room:
  • Christmas trolls
  • Home for Christmas
  • The twelve days of Christmas
  • Who's that knocking on Christmas Eve?
  • The wild Christmas reindeer
  • The mitten : a Ukrainian folktale
Jan Brett also has a fabulous website, here. Click on Hedgie's Holiday Workbench for lots and lots of Christmas activities you can do at home!

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Christmas Bears

NHCS StoryCrafters heard the story of Bear's First Christmas, the rhyming tale of a bear who helps out some animal friends and experiences the joy of Christmas...
Out of doors, the beasts stared as the last embers fell,
They thought and they thought, but they still couldn't tell
What the meaning could be of the music, the lights,
And the gladness inside on this darkest of nights,
But sparks deep inside them gave off that same glow
As they made their way back through the drifts of deep snow.

After the story, we made another kind of bear - an ornament for our trees at home! Children made a bear's face and ears from paper and glued on a cotton snout and googly eyes. A white cup served as the bear's body. Inside the cup, we suspended a tiny bell on a ribbon, so the ornament jingles when it moves! A polar bear for Christmas!

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Christmas Trees

Only two more NHCS StoryCrafters sessions until the holidays and vacation! Today we read Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree by Robert Barry, a story of a Christmas tree that kept getting trimmed because it was a little too tall for the space it was in. It's fun to watch the way the little trimmed part gets smaller and smaller as it is passed to one family after another! This book is one of my holiday favorites!

Here's our craft - a Christmas tree, of course! Children traced and cut two congruent triangles, then cut slit in each - one from the top point to the middle of the triangle, the other from the center of the baseline to the middle of the triangle. Triangles were then slid together to form a three dimensional "tree", able to stand on its own. Next came the "trimmings" - sequins, buttons, and sparkly gems. No two trees were alike in size or shape - and all were beautiful!

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