Thursday, April 14, 2022


Rabbits were our focus for Storytime today. We read Really Rabbits by Virginia Kroll, about two rabbits who sneak out of their cage at night to help their family with chores. In The Black Rabbit by Philippa Leathers, a rabbit didn't recognize his own shadow, and the rabbit in Little White Rabbit by Kevin Henkes had a vivid imagination!
Storytime kids colored precut shapes, then folded and glued to make the rockin' rabbit with googly eyes.  The Saplings learned a new paper folding technique and designed tiny little stand-up rabbits with cute little faces and a bit of a "spring" in their step! 


Monday, April 11, 2022

Decorating Eggs

Our April drop-in craft was decorating plastic eggs for Easter. Such colorful creativity using lots of different materials! I wish I had gotten more close-up photos!

Thursday, March 17, 2022

March LEGO Club

Thirty-two kids joined us for this month's session. The challenge was all about wind and moving air, and building MOCs that could withstand the stiff breezes of a hair dryer set on HIGH. Some creations even moved in the wind!

Here's a very sturdy MOC!
and here's a MOC with a windmill - that really works! Wow!

This is the book that we listened to before we began our builds - a funny fictitious story about how the folks in one Icelandic village tried to control the winds. 

There's always lots of fun at LEGO Club!

It's Maple Season!

Since NH Maple Weekend is coming up, for Storytime today we read about making maple syrup. 
Then we used homemade play dough to make pancakes and waffles and added some bowl filler paper to represent the syrup. Do you see the "butter" on the pancake?

If you want to make your own play dough fun, here's the recipe. If anyone dyes theirs with food coloring, please comment to let me know if it stained little fingers?
1/2 cup salt
1 cup water
2 TBSP oil
1 TBSP cream of tartar
1 cup flour
food coloring, as desired 

Mix ingredients together in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly until dough forms and pulls away from the side of the pan. Let cool, then knead until smooth. Store in an airtight container. 
In the afternoon, the Saplings heard the story of The Leprechaun's Gold by Pamela Duncan Edwards. We noticed that it began with this beautiful illuminated letter L. 
Later, there was a 3D Rainbow challenge, with only rainbow colored paper strips to begin with. Such imagination and creativity!

Thursday, February 3, 2022

The Boy Who Failed Show and Tell


This is one of the funniest books I've read in a very long time! It's about a boy named Jordan and his experiences in school during fourth grade (note: this is also the author's name. How do you suppose that happened?) 

Here's what the publisher has to say about it:

In a typical school year, every kid has one or two things go wrong. But for Jordan, there's A LOT going wrong ALL THE TIME.
Take this year. Here are some of the thing going wrong:
-- His teacher hates him. Like, really hates him. Like, is totally out to get him even when he's trying to be good, and is willing to fail him on the simplest things, like show and tell.
-- He has a slight breathing problem because of his asthma. And breathing is never really an optional activity.
-- His pet snake has given birth to way, way, way too many baby snakes, all who need a home.

-- He is finding that becoming The World's Best Drummer in no time whatsoever is maybe not the easiest goal.

-- There are bullies ready to stomp him when all he has to defend himself with is a lunchbox.

And all this doesn't even include the freak swing set accident, the fears inside his head, or the funniest class presentation ever.

By keeping his cool (some of the time), banging on the drums (a lot), and keeping his sense of humor (all the time), Jordan's going to try to make it through the year...and grow up to write a book about it!

It's downstairs, in the Juvenile section. If it's already taken out, let me know and I'll save it for YOU!

Animals in Winter

At Storytime today, the day after the groundhog saw his shadow and predicted six more weeks of winter, we read a realistic fiction book about animals and their behaviors this time of year. Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner is the story of a child skiing over snow while her father tells her about the animals around and beneath it. It's been one of my favorites winter read-alouds for a long time. If you'd like to hear the author herself read it, there's a link right here

We also read two other books about animals in winter, ones where the animal talked and behaved like people. They were not realistic, but they were still good stories!

Then we made this little googly-eyed groundhog, popping up from a snowy paper cup den to look around for his shadow. When he sees it, he can pop back down again! Six more weeks of winter - how can a groundhog be so sure?

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Ladybug Award Books

Mid-winter is an exciting time in the literary world, because it's when many annual book awards are announced. This is true even for children's books, with the American Library Association (ALA) awarding the Caldecott Medal for the best illustrations in a book for children, and the Newbery Award to the author of the best children's book of the year. We have designated shelves in the Children's Room for many of these award-winning books with the newer titles peppered throughout the children's and juvenile collections. 

My favorite awards are the NH state awards, because they are voted on by NH children. The Great Stone Face Book Award is sponsored by the Children's Librarians of New Hampshire (CLNH) and is given each year to an author whose book receives the most votes from fourth through sixth graders throughout the state. For the Ladybug Award, the state's children's librarians nominate picture book titles each spring. By fall, the list is whittled to ten books and NH children from preschoolers to third grade vote to choose the award winner in December. I'm always so excited to see which book wins.

Because this award has existed only since 2003, we have all the Ladybug Award winners at the Gordon-Nash! I spent some time this week putting ladybug spine labels on our copies so they will be easy for kids to spot on the shelves. Interestingly, six of the award-winning books were checked out! See? - they really are good books! Ask your child about the Ladybug Award!