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Monday, April 24, 2017

Become a Techy!

Welcome back for another look at our fantastic Simply Science Kits.  I left you a clue last week about the topic.  This week we are going to look at some of the great technology options we have to offer.  Learning how to code has been creeping down to younger and younger ages.  For those of you who don't know what coding is, here is the dictionary definition:

Digital Technology:
 1.  a set of symbols that can be interpreted by a computer or a piece of software:  binary code; Java code; ASCII code.
2.  the symbolic arrangement of statements or instructions in a computer program, or the set of instructions in such a program.

This code you are reading write know has code running behind it.  With all the technology we currently use, this is an important area to learn more about as the jobs of the future are still not created but you can be assured they will be technology based.

Coding has gone all the way down to the preschool level.  Bee-Bot is a robot where children learn how to sequence, estimate and problem-solve while having fun.  Kids can send Bee-Bot forward, back, left, and right with its directional keys using up to 40 commands.  Press the green GO button and Bee-Bot starts on its way.  It then blinks and beeps when it finished with each command to allow children to follow Bee-Bot through the program they have entered.  When it has run through all the commands, Bee-Bot lights up and makes a sound.  Use the friendly command cards and curriculum to program Bee-Bot.  It even comes with a mat that you can try to program Bee-Bot to move around on.  It's super fun, but be careful - it's not as easy as it looks!

 Ozobots are good for children ages 8 and up.  It's easy to program these little bots as you simply draw lines and color segments for the Ozobot to follow.  There is even an app where you can set up codes to make the Ozobot dance!  Some of our library friends had fun writing codes at our science kit open house!

We can't forget about teens.  Arduino is a bit more sophisticated coding system.  With Arduino you can make 15 projects using basic electronic components.  Create a musical instrument you play by waving your hands.  Design a Knock Lock where you tap out the Secret Code to open the door.  The kit comes with Sylvia's Super Awesome Project Book for more amazing ideas.

You know we've been getting questions on whether adults can check out these kits.  Are you crazy?  Of course you can!  The library staff had so much fun playing and creating with these kits before we announced them to the public that we highly encourage it.  

Simply Science Kits












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Monday, April 17, 2017

Bring on the Mathematicians!

Welcome to Week 2 of exploring our fantastic new science kit collection!  Math?  What does math have to do with science?  You are kidding, right?  Math, science and technology are totally linked together.  It is so important that children develop a strong sense of numbers so they are successful in learning math concepts.  Let's face it, math has changed a lot since the days we learned it in school.  Common Core has students learning a lot more strategies to help them solve math problems but the basic concept of knowing your basic math facts automatically has not changed much.  To help them learn these skills we developed several math kits to practice math skills in a fun way.

Multiplication and division can be a hard concept for some children.  Our kit offers many ways to practice those skills with some resources to show step-by-step methods including how to use arrays to help solve problems.  The games are fun for the whole family (I know it helps me remember my facts!).

Money, money, money!  It's such an importance life skill to learn how to count money and to budget money.  We have a kit to help with coin recognition, practice counting money and even a book on the history of money.  Did you know that back in Ben Franklin's day, money was made out of cloth?  Back then if money was torn, they fixed it with a needle and thread. 

Another  life skills is telling time.  Practice telling time by matching the digital time to the analog time.  Use the Time Discovery Can to help practice those skills by drawing on clock faces, using a Judy clock and using dice as a fun way to practice time. 

Geometry is in the house with Tangrams.  A tangram is a dissection puzzle consisting of seven flat shapes, called tans, which you put together to form various shapes.  The objective of the puzzle is to form a specific shape by only being given an outline or silhouette using all seven pieces.  But watch out because the pieces cannot overlap.  It is reported to have been invented in China.  Read Grandfather Tang's Story and try to make the shapes in the book.

We also have math kits for addition/subtraction as well as fractions so please check those kits out as well. If you read closely, I gave you a hint about what next week's blog topic.  So for now, I leave you with this mathematical life thought:







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Monday, April 10, 2017

It's a Scientific Discovery!

They're here, they're here, they're here!  If you didn't get a chance to come this past weekend to view and play with the new science kit collection at the library's open house, don't despair as now the kits are available for checkout.  In the Youth Services Department, we have kits for children beginning at the age of 3 and up to age 12.  Did you know that the teens have kits too?  Yep, ages 12 and up can check out the cool kits downstairs in the teen area.  All these kits are due in part by a grant the library won through the IEEE.  We were also very fortunate to have some local businesses sponsor some kits as well as the Friends of the Library. 

For the next few weeks, I thought I'd feature some of the science kits.  Here is a little bit of basic knowledge you might like to know first:
  •   Checkout is for 2 weeks, with 1 renewal
  •  1 kit per card
  •  Holds are allowed
  •  $1.00 late fee per day
  •  Resident cardholders and cardholders from other area libraries are allowed to check out the kits (provided they register their card with us)

So now that I've gotten that bit of business out of the way, let's check out the kits!




What a great way for children to learn more about how the body works!  Explore the body by using the kid-friendly magnetic boy/girl model featuring the skeletal, circulatory and muscular systems plus organs.  Also included are some great books to expand the learning (one even has those fun lift-the-flaps books).  

 I dare you to find me someone who doesn't want to know about dinosaurs.  Check out the awesome National Geographic Ultimate Dinopedia book along with the Walking with Dinosaurs DVD.  Then bring the wonders of prehistoric life with a museum like collection of cast replicas of actual fossil specimens.  Each fossil has its own ID card and a time line and information sheet. 



             Insects
Spring has arrived as the bugs are beginning to wake up.  Remember being a kid and trying to catch ladybugs and fireflies?  How about chasing crickets in the grass?  Get an up-close look at 12 amazing bugs in the Real Bugs Discovery Kit.  Each bug is permanently enclosed in an indestructible case so that kids can explore the insect from every angle.  Plus use the magnifier to get an even closer look.  Catch some of your own bugs and peer at them in the Creature Peeper.  Look them up in the Ultimate Bug-Opedia.  Then make sure you release them back into nature.

These are just a few of the science kits that we have housed upstairs in Youth Services.  Stayed tuned to next week's blog where I share a few more amazing kits that I know you will want to check out to take home and explore.

Until next week, discover all you can!











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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Science Kit Open House

Something exciting is happening at the Roselle Public Library this weekend.  We are unveiling our new Simply Science Kits!  In January of this year, we received the fantastic news that our library had won the IEEE Grant which supports the discovery of science in children and young adults.  Also, we were honored to have many local businesses and the Friends of the Library make generous donations to help with the development of the kits.  We have been busy buying science materials and assembling the kits in time for our open house.

We invite you to join us on Sunday, April 9th from 1 - 4 PM and take a peek at the science kits displayed throughout the library.  Beginning on Monday, April 10th, the kits will be available for checkout.  There is a limit of one per family and the kits are available for a one week checkout.  We are excited to be able to share these kits with you and hope we persuade a few of our young patrons to become future scientists, doctors, mathematicians and engineers.

For the next several weeks, we will be featuring the various kits available for checkout along with other supplemental materials on our shelves that support these important science or mathematical concepts.

Simply Science Kits


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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Kids - Spring Break - RPL

It's Spring Break time again!  A week off of school.  Hip, Hip, Hooray!

That sentiment might last the weekend, but then by Monday you'll probably be hearing, "I'm bored!"  Parents will be thinking, "What can we do that isn't going to cost us a lot of money?"  Well, RPL has an answer for you - come join us for some fun activities at the library!  The best part is that it won't cost you a dime!

On Monday, we are offering a great science show from the Mad Science Team.  It's entitled "Fire and registration is required. 
Ice."  Have you ever seen paper being burned but leaving no ash?  How about levitating a beach ball without using your hands?  Volunteers will be asked to join in on the demonstrations of spectacular chemical reactions and cool special effects.  The show starts at 1 PM and

Tuesday brings about Grandparents Got Game or as we fondly call it - GGG.  Bring a grandparent or a special adult to GGG for some fun spring time activities, snacks and games.  The fun happens from 1:30 until 3 PM.  Drop on by!

Brick by Brick happens on Wednesday upstairs in the Youth Services story time room.  Create magnificent designs with our mounds of Legos from 12-2 PM.  Then leave your masterpiece to be displayed in Youth Services for all eyes to admire.

On Thursday it's Make-and-Take Day!  Come join us to make Moon Sand.  It's a fun, sensory dough that you can make and use your own creativity to mold it into almost anything.  And it's yours to take home to keep! 

Not sure what to do on Friday?  Don't forget that RPL offers the Museum Adventure Pass.  Take your family to the Brookfield Zoo, Legoland, Illinois Train Museum or Chicago Botanic Gardens.  These are just a few of the places the museum pass will let you in for free or a reduced rate.  Hurry in to get these passes.  There is a limited amount that can go out each week.   You can always call to see if they are available but passes cannot be held, you must come into the library to request them. 


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Monday, March 20, 2017

Who is...Part 3 - The Ending Saga




Welcome back for the final chapter in our compelling Youth Services Department series.  The last two ladies are well worth the wait.  You'll see them as the stars of our daytime story times.  Let's meet our final Youth Services members.


I'll bet you didn't know that I am originally from Kansas; that's right the Kansas of Dorothy fame ("There's no place like home!").  My early experience as a librarian was at Medinah Christian School.  The library was only open on Mondays and I saw all eight grades in one day!   I was in charge of collecting fines, checking in-and-out books, and putting new books into the collection (I can definitely multitask).

At the Roselle Public Library, you'll find me leading the Tots & Tykes and Toddler Tales.  I love to create craft projects for parents and children to do together, recite fingerplays and get my guitar out to sing favorite children songs.  With older children, I work on publishing our What's Up With Kids newsletter.  We meet every few months, brainstorm ideas and then children bring their writing and illustrations back to me and their work gets published into a newsletter for our patrons to enjoy.  If you know anyone in grades 2-6 who love to write, tell them to join What's Up With Kids.

My favorite author is C. S. Lewis of Chronicles of Narnia series.  The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is my favorite of the series.  I also enjoy singing and once I sang a duet with Canada's famous tenor, Ben Hepner when he was a young man just out of college.  I remember back then thinking he wasn't very good, but wow is he good now.

If I could change careers, I think that I would like to be a truck driver.  I cannot think of anything more exciting than traveling all over the country in an 18-wheeler.  All that open road, no responsibilities, meeting new people, sleeping in a different place very day...now THAT'S living!

10-4 good buddy; over and out!

Mrs. A.


I have been a Youth Services Assistant for almost six years in Roselle.  In the land of books, I have many favorite authors spread among the picture book collection.  While Mo Willems tops the list, I like other silly picture books such as Carnivores by Aaron Reynolds, the tales of Willy and Wally Wolf by Margie Palatini, and anything by Bob Shea.  Readers will discover that unicorns are pretty overconfident in Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great.  

That said, nonfiction books are also interesting.  In the Wednesday Preschool and Thursday Family Drop-in morning story times, there is at least one fact filled book with high quality photos to share with the preschool readers.  I will be blogging about these and other longer chapter books as Willems Fan on our Blogger Bookclub page.

While I read chapter book series such as The Land of Stories by Chris Colfer, I prefer to listen to them.  A good, engaging reader is a reason to stay in the car just a little longer.  If you have questions about books on CD or Playaways for your audio needs, I would love to see what we can find through borrowing an item from another library or adding a new title to the collection.  With summer around the corner, I hope to share this format with the community.  Additionally, I look forward to sharing books on CD or Playaway versions of the 2018 Caudill and Monarch nominees.

Yours in reading and Listening,                                       

Miss Liz


I hope you've enjoyed these segments on our Youth Services staff and you've learned a little more about each of us (I know I learned a few new things).  Stop by and say hi.  We love to get to know our patrons and be on a first name basis with them.  Please join us for our upcoming YS programming as well! 


Monday, March 13, 2017

Who is - Part 2 of the Youth Services Trilogy

Welcome back for Part 2 of our compelling Youth Services Department series.  I am a huge fan of trilogies, so it's perfect that there will be three installments on getting to know your fabulous Youth Service Department staff.  So let's not delay and meet our next two staff members!

My little sister likes to tell people that when I was a little girl, I wanted to be a princess -  specifically,
Xena, Warrior Princess.  I wanted to be a princess; the kind of princess who has excellent adventures and saves the day, but also has really awesome clothes.  Which, I mean, who wouldn't?  So I love books about princesses (you better believe I love Merida, Rapunzel and Mulan oh so very much!).

My favorite princess book is Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede, which is about a princess who decides she doesn't want to marry a boring prince, instead she wants to go off and have adventures.  So she does.  I also like Princess Academy by Shannon Hale, which is about a school where girls can learn to be princesses.  I also love all of Tamora Pierce's books, some of which have princesses and others that have girls who want to become knights and have adventures (which is basically the next best thing to being a princess if you ask me).

When I was a teenager, I fell in love with graphic novels.  I love superheroes (Captain Marvel is my favorite!  I also like Ms. Marvel and Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur), but I also love a lot of the stories about the daily life of kids, like Sisters by Raina Telgemeier or Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson (2018 Rebecca Caudill nominee by the way).  The last few years, I have really enjoyed reading books by Terry Pratchett and the new retellings of fairy tales.

When I'm not reading, though, I am usually at the Roselle area schools, daycares, or park districts doing Outreach programs.  That means I go to schools and tell students and teachers about the programs we have going on at the library, help schools to find books they need for their students, do storytimes and presentations, and much more!  One of my favorite things to do other than read is to talk about libraries and library services, so this is a really cool opportunity for me to let people know what we do here.  I also like to visit other libraries to see what kind of programs and displays they  have to see if there's anything I should be doing at the Roselle Public Library.

In my free time, I like to knit and I am trying to learn to garden.  I have been reading lots of different gardening tips and am trying to grow a bunch of food in my backyard this Spring!  One day I would like to grow my own strawberries and then make them into strawberry jam.  I am a pretty good cook, but I want to get even better, so I also spend a lot of time thinking about food and cooking.  I also have two cats who think I spend way too much time reading and cooking and not nearly enough time petting them.

If you catch me at the desk in Youth Services, feel free to say hi!  If not, maybe I will see you at an Outreach visit.  Either way, I am super excited to help people find the materials they need!

Royally yours,
Miss Stephanie (or you can call me Princess Stephanie)


I have always loved books!  As a child, I remember my mom taking me to the library for storytimes and then getting to check out books.  I would ask her to read to me constantly, but with two younger siblings, she didn't always have the time.  So I learned how to read in Kindergarten so that I could read books anytime I wanted.  Curious George was my favorite series.  As a tween, I would ride my red Huffy bike up to the library, fill my backpack up with books, and then ride home - only to return a few days later.  Back then I loved to read mysteries (loved Agatha Christie) and biographies.  Kids are so lucky today to have the Who is/was series!  

When I saw the job opening in Youth Services four years ago, I was so excited.  You see I am a teacher during the day (guess what I teach - you're right if you guessed teaching kids how to read) and I thought how cool would it be to be able to work in a library too!  These are both dream jobs in my world because I am surrounded by BOOKS EVERY DAY!!  I love my jobs because I get to match children to good fit books.  Maybe you have seen me running, uh I mean walking up the aisles showing kids great titles that they just have to read!  A really great part of my job is getting to read new books and then writing blogs about them.  I read so many middle school and young adult books that are just so fantastic!  My favorites right now are the inventive retellings of the fairy tales.  Liesel ShurtliffChris Colfer, Michael Buckley, and Megan Morrison write some great series featuring popular fairy tale characters such as Cinderella, Rapunzel, Red Riding Hood, Jack (from beanstalk fame) and many more.  Some of my all time favorites novels are Hatchet by Gary Paulsen (love Gary's books), Holes by Louis Sachar,  Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo and Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling.  Recently I've gotten into science fiction too (which used to be my least favorite genre), but The Giver by Lois Lawry, Masterminds by Gordon Korman (2017 Rebecca Caudill nominee), and the Maze Runner series by James Dashner  have now got me hooked.

Part of my job is to host programs for children.  Books and Popcorn is one of my favorites because I get to sit around discussing a pre-selected book and eat popcorn while doing it!  Then we usually do some kind of fun project, experiment or game.  Another great program is Kreative Kids.  Children in grades K-2 come and join me for a storytime where science and art are incorporated into the program.  It is so much fun!

I'm a pretty busy person when I'm not at the library.  I enjoy walking my two dogs, exercising when I have time, and spending time with my two children and husband.   I also like learning a lot, so I take classes when I am able.  I think it's fun to learn about new things.

So the next time you are at the library, come and visit me in the Youth Services Department.  I will be happy to take you on a tour and discuss our favorite books together.  Thanks for reading!

Wandering in the stacks,
Miss Tammi


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