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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Fall and Halloween

You know, Halloween is one of my favorite times of the year.  I just love the excitement in the air when it approaches.  There are so many things to do with your family during the fall season.  One of my favorites is going to the pumpkin farm.  People of all ages love going to the pumpkin farm. Going into the pumpkin field to actually pick out the perfect pumpkin to take home and then carve into a jack-o-lantern is just so much fun.  Plus there is always wonderful pumpkin baked goods at those farms - pumpkin pie, pumpkin donuts, roasted pumpkin seeds!  I'd better stop or I'm going to gain ten pounds just talking about it!  Then there are the hayrides that jostle you around or the corn mazes.  No wonder people love going to farms!

The library has some great books about the pumpkin life cycle for little ones.  It's always interesting
how these big pumpkins come from such a small seed.  Stuck on how to carve your pumpkin?  We have several books with different designs or decorating ideas to help creating the perfect pumpkin.  It's always fun to design a pumpkin based on your favorite book character!

Along with pumpkins come parties.  Halloween parties are always so enjoyable to plan.  Thinking about having a Halloween party?   We have lots of books on crafts for Halloween parties and for making fun Halloween inspired foods.  We've all had grape "eyeballs" before, right?  Love the brain jello!  Don't forget about the perfect costume.  We have some books that will give you ideas on that as well.  I'm still trying to figure my costume out for this year.  Plus the library is having a Halloween Fun event for children ages 18-months to 5 years.  Families get to wear costumes, hear stories, dance to music and have a good time celebrating Halloween.

I almost forgot "Boo at the Zoo."  Every October, the Brookfield Zoo helps celebrate fall and the Halloween season by hosting this event.  The zoo is decorated and you see animals enjoying the delectable taste of pumpkin.  Plus lots of visitors wear their costumes to the zoo.  It's such a good time.  I went last year with some friends and had a blast.  Don't forget that the library offers Museum Passes which help get two people into the zoo for free.  These get checked out fast during this event, so call or stop by to see if there are any available.  The passes cannot be reserved and there is a limit of one per family.  The passes are good for seven days, so you can plan ahead. 

Finally, the Halloween season brings out the desire to hear ghost stories or visit haunted houses.  While I can't help with haunted houses (I really don't like these), I can help point you in the direction of some spooky tales you can check out.  Also, if you enjoy Halloween movies (remember I work in the children's department), I can offer you some great Halloween movies that are appropriate for families.  One of my favorite movies is Hocus Pocus.  I laugh every time I see that movie. 

So enjoy the beauty and family time that Fall brings.  I've given you a few ideas of ways to celebrate fall, but I'm sure I've missed a some.  I'd love to hear your fun ideas on how your family celebrates fall and the Halloween season!

Halloween DVDs
Halloween Easy Readers 
Halloween NonFiction
Boo at the Zoo
Halloween Fun Program

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Saturday, October 15, 2016

On the Same Page

Once a year, the Roselle Public Library (RPL) partners with the Bloomingdale and Itasca Public Libraries to offer programs to all area patrons.  That means patrons from Roselle can go over and join in on programs being held at the other two libraries and their patrons can come and visit our fabulous library.

During the week of October 17th, the Youth Services Department is offering some fun programming to all three communities. For youth in grades 2-5, RPL is offering Books and Popcorn where participants will be discussing the book Sixty-Eight Rooms by Marianne Malone.

For the younger crowd, (ages 6 months to 5 years), Shape Escape storytimes will be offered on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, no registration required. 

Don't forget on Wednesday, Wa*ka*doodle Wednesday is open to all ages.  Stop by and do a fun craft from 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Finally, Thursday is a super day with the Kreative Kids program, Eye Spy...Color and Shape.  Registration for this program begins, Monday, October 3.

Be sure to participate in this annual On the Same Page week.  It's always good to have guests in our library and for RPL patrons to visit Bloomingdale and Itasca and partake in their program offerings!


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Monday, October 10, 2016

Star Wars Reads

'Star Wars Reads' is revving up this October for it's fifth year.  Being a youth librarian, I am always encouraged when popular social icons focus on helping our youth become life long readers.   It is a way to get our youth excited about reading - especially boys who may not normally pick up a book to read for fun.

The Roselle Public Library has LOTS of Star Wars books for readers of all ages.  I did a quick search on how many different types of Star Wars books we offered in the Youth Services Department.  I was impressed at how many different genres and reading levels we have to offer based on Star Wars!

Let me start out with saying we have the biography of the man who brought Star Wars to life many moons ago.  You know his name..... that's right, it's George Lucas.  What an interesting man to learn more about.

You say you want to read a graphic novel about Star Wars?  Who'd blame you?  Graphic novels have great illustrations that totally add to the story.  Well folks, we have 38 different graphic novels  available for your reading pleasure.

Say you have a younger child who just loves Yoda or Darth Vader.  We offer 5 different picture books, even some in board books format for those little ones.  You just have to love the series by Jack and Holman Wang.  Simple text but very engaging pictures.

Sometimes you just enjoy listening to a story.  The library offers a kit with an audio version of the book.  So you get to take home a book and a CD to listen to the story.  An added bonus is the publisher usually adds some music to the recording which just makes it even more fun to hear the story.

Let's say you are a beginning reader.  DK Publishing has a great Star Wars easy reader series written in various levels for early readers.  What a great way to get a boy engaged in reading at a young age.  Plus there are even Lego Star Wars books to read.  Can it get any better than Legos and Star Wars?

Don't forget the nonfiction section.  Inside the nonfiction section, you will find Star Wars themed cookbooks (these have great recipes for Star Wars themed party foods or even how to get a picky eater to try something new).  Want to see how parts of the movie is filmed or learn more about the vehicles in the movies?  We have informational books on that too.

And one cannot leave out the fiction section when discussing Star Wars themed books.  These stories have much more involved story lines and introduce characters that may only be briefly mentioned in the movie along with our favorites.  Want to find out more about the young Obi Wan Kenobi or Anakin Skywalker?  This is the section you want to go to.  Check out the new series about Star Wars written by various authors such as Tom Angleberger, Adam Gidwitz and Alexandra Bracken.  Even adults are checking titles from this series out!

If you add all those titles, the library has 156 different Star Wars books to read just upstairs in the Youth Services Department.  That's not counting titles in Young Adult or Adult sections.  So the sum it all up, we have a lot of titles to help celebrate "Star Wars Reads" October reading celebration.   The force is telling you to come to the library to check some out.

Star Wars Easy Readers
Star Wars Fiction
Star Wars Graphic Novels
Star Wars Picture Books


Sunday, October 2, 2016

Digital Reading and Boys

Have you ever become frustrated because your son doesn't like to read books?  "Would you like to come to the library with me?" you ask.  Your son's response, "Are we getting video games or DVDs?"

If you have ever heard these or similar words from your son, maybe it's time to rethink the format of what he reads.  Most boys love screen time - whether on the TV, iPad, Smartphone or other digital tools.  However it's not the screen that's of concern; it's what's on the screen.  So why not control a
part of the screen time by encouraging boys to read on digital devices.  Research supports that reading on a device still develops the benefits of reading 30-minutes a day.  These benefits include strong reading and verbal cognitive skills, cognitive stamina, vocabulary, background knowledge, empathy, imagination, curiosity, and improved writing and spelling skills.

Surveys and research support that girls prefer to read print books (like many adults) and because of this preference, they enjoy reading and do it more often.  When boys are given a choice to pick the format of the text, they too become more frequent readers.

Here are 5 reasons why digital reading devices benefit boys: 

1.  Reading is viewed in a more positive light
Research shows when boys read on a computer for assessments, they score higher than on the paper-based version.

2.  Everything is in one place and easy to carry
Boys don't like to carry around multiple copies of books, so they don't.  However, boys who had all their books downloaded onto their device, didn't mind pulling out their device for some reading time.

3.  Privacy
What boys read on a device stays private, which is particularly important for boys who struggle with reading.  

4.  Changeability of the font, lighting, and size of words
What may be the right font for you, may not be the right font for your son.  They are expects at changing settings.  Let them.

5.  Includes a dictionary and audio book functions
One click away is the dictionary and thesaurus, so boys are more willing to look up words, thereby increasing vocabulary.  Also, many books include the text-to-speech feature.  The advantage to listening to books while reading along with them is a great way to read more challenging books of their choosing. 

Digital reading devices can be the key to opening the world of reading to a non-reading boy and the library is a great place to help with digital text.  Roselle Public Library offers many titles on a digital format.  We even offer assistance in teaching you how to download books onto a device.

If we want boys to be successful in the future (and we do!), it's time we encourage boys to choose to read on a digital device instead of forcing them to always read an actual hardcover book.  The format doesn't matter in the long run; it's the knowledge that comes from reading that is the most important aspect of reading! 

Reference:  Tubin, H. (2016).  5 benefits of digital reading devices for boys.  Retrieved from:

eMedia Library

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Monday, September 26, 2016

Time for a good story

In my world, it's always time for a good story.  I love reading aloud to children.  It is so much fun to
see children engaged in a story especially as I become more animated or the plot thickens.  

Reading to children has so many positive aspects.  It helps build reading skills, relationships and hopefully a love of books.  It is important to read regularly to children.  At home, parents should aim to read 10-15 minutes a day to their child.  Reading before bedtime helps to bring a peaceful end to the day.

Ask your child to participate in choosing the book and be prepared to read their favorite book over and over again.  If it's your turn to choose, bring in a variety of genres such as nonfiction, graphic novels, poetry, etc.  With younger children, have some fun and see if they can make rhymes up for certain words or finish the rest of a sentence if there is a pattern to the story (Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. has repeating text).  Be sure to stop and look at the illustrations and talk about what's going on in them to deepen their comprehension of the story.  Also, children love when you create different voices for the characters (you should hear them giggle when I use different voices).

Need a few suggestions?  Here you go!

Biblioburro:  A True Story from Columbia by Jeanette Winters
What if the library came to your neighborhood on the back of a donkey?  This is a true story of a Colombian schoolteacher's traveling library, which brought books to children in remote

Just a Second  by Steve Jenkins
In just 1 second, a bumblebee flaps its wings 100 times and the earth travels 18-1/2 miles.  This nonfiction book will help your child think about time in new ways.  Different methods of measuring time will also be discovered.

Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
When a little boy discovers that dragons like to eat tacos, he decides to host a taco party for them.  But if a fire-breathing dragon accidentally gets a bite of spicy salsa, look out! 


Monday, September 19, 2016

World Rhino Day

Rhinoceros are gigantic, prehistoric looking beasts.  They are also the second largest land mammal after the elephant.  Unfortunately the species is threatened to become extinct, which is why World Rhino Day was created in 2010 to raise awareness of the need to protect the five existing types of rhinos:  white rhino, black rhino, Indian rhino, Javan rhino and Sumatran rhino.  These rhinoceros have been hunted by man for their horn, which was thought to have medicinal purposes but in reality it has none.  Due to poaching, the population of rhinos is in serious trouble.  Let's learn a little more about the five different kinds of rhinos.    

Javan Rhinoceros - This rhino is almost extinct as there is thought to only be 60 left in the world.  It lives in the Asian rain forests and has a single horn.
Javan Rhinoceros
Sumatran Rhinoceros - Resides in Sumatra.  Because Sumatra is cold, this rhino has the most fur of all the rhinos but is also the shortest.  It is critically endangered with around 300 left in the world.
Sumatran Rhinoceros

Black Rhinoceros - This rhino isn't really black, rather it is light grey.  It comes from Africa and can weight as much as 4,000 pounds.  It has two horns and is also critically endangered.
Black Rhinoceros
Indian Rhinoceros - This animal resides in, you guessed it, India.  It can weigh over 6,000 pounds and has one horn.
Indian Rhinoceros
White Rhinoceros - This is the Black Rhino's neighbor in Africa.  It isn't really white, but grey.  This rhino is the second largest land mammal after the elephant.  There are around 14,000 white two horned rhinos left on earth, making it the hardiest population of the species.
White Rhinoceros
 Some fun facts about Rhinos are:

  • They can run up to 40 miles per hour.  Better get out of their way!
  • Rhinos like mud because it helps to protect their sensitive skin from the sun's rays.  Keep them out of the house or you'll get in trouble for tracking in muddy hoof prints!
  • The word rhinoceros comes from the Greek words for "nose" and "horns."  How clever were those Greeks?!
  • Rhinos have good hearing, but poor eyesight.  Another reason to get out of their way if they are running.
  • These giant beasts are herbivores or plant-eaters.  If asked, it's in your best interest to share your salad with them.
The Youth Services Department will be offering an opportunity to learn more about these mighty
creatures on September 22nd at 4:30 PM with the Kreative Kids program.  Children in grades K-2 can participate in activities to learn more about the rhinoceros and  create a special project.  Even if you can't make it to Kreative Kids, learn more about the rhinoceros and ways it can be protected from extinction by checking out books on the species and visiting the various sites below.  I cannot image a world without rhinoceros, can you?

Kreative Kid Registration Link
Picture Books with Rhinoceros characters
Rhinoceros Informational Books
World Rhino Day website
Save the Rhino website


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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

Roselle Public Library District is proud to present the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program!

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is open to Roselle Public Library Cardholders and is for babies through preschoolers. This program encourages families to read together! Sign up at the Youth Services Ask Me desk.

1,000 books = 1 book a day for 3 years OR 1,000 books = 3 books a day for 1 year 

Once you sign up you will receive a reading log and an information packet full of goodies.
Track the books that you read and check in after every 100 books. Once you have read 1,000 books your child will have earned a book of their very own.

Why participate? 

Young children learn language from the speech they hear.

Reading aloud builds pre-reading skills necessary for learning to read.

By reading together, young children are learning to value books and reading.

It's a program you can do at home, at your own speed.

Reading every day gets kids school ready.

It's a great way to spend time together and you can do it anywhere.


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