As the year begins to draw to a close and the holiday season swings into full gear, children's librarians from around the Denver Public Library system are putting together lists of their very favorite books for kids and teens, published in 2012. These books are sure to dazzle and delight, educate and engage, and make for happy readers throughout the year.
Books for the Very Youngest:
Do Cows Meow? by Selena Yoon. Baby's favorite animals are featured in brilliant colors with giant flaps that lift and teach animal sounds.
The tragic abduction and murder of 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway while walking to school in her Westminster neighborhood has struck fear into the heart of parents all over the country, and particularly in the Denver metro area. Short of barring our children from going out of doors, what can we do to keep them safe and healthy when they are out of our immediate sight?
Sharing books on topics like personal safety, stranger danger, and street smarts is a gentle but effective way of educating and informing children about these essential facts. Authors of these books are especially careful to impart information in a matter-of-fact manner that does not frighten children, but rather gives them the necessary tools they need to keep themselves safe and protected from harm.
Should read-alouds stop when children reach grade school? Absolutely not!
Join us in the Central Children’s Library for Ms. Gigi’s weekly chapter book read-aloud. Titles are most appropriate for 2nd-5th graders, but all ages are welcome, and we will serve hot cocoa and snacks. Wear your PJ’s, bring your favorite blanket or pillow or stuffie, and get set to get lost in a great book!
Where: DPL Central Children’s Library Pavilion
When: Every Tuesday, from 6-7 p.m.
Behold, the first day of school...a time that fills the hearts of parents and children with excitement and dread, often in equal measure.
Particularly for brand new preschoolers and kindergartners, as well as for other children who have never been to school, the first day can be a time of wondering and worry as much as anticipation and excitement. A great way to soothe fears as well as celebrate this new experience is to share a picture book about beginning school, the first day of school, and other school-related experiences.
For first-day fears, try these titles to help reassure children:
A fifth-grader with severe facial deformities starts attending traditional school. The narrator shifts about halfway through the book from the main character's perspective to the viewpoint of others around him. The story is very real and poignant. My son, who is entering sixth grade, also enjoyed this book.
With summer in full swing, many folks are taking family road trips and vacations, or looking for new ways to keep out-of-school children occupied and engaged at home. One great solution is to check out some awesome audiobooks from your local DPL branch!
This alternative format is a big hit for keeping kids occupied during long trips or on hot summer days, as well as helping kids who may not be completely comfortable with reading independently to enjoy the experience of books. While it may seem somewhat counterintuitive, audiobooks actually promote children’s literacy. They do this by modeling correct pronunciation and fluent reading, expanding vocabulary, offering children with differing abilities and learning styles the opportunity to get engaged with books, and, most importantly, improving children’s listening skills.
Every month, librarians from Denver Public Library branches get together to talk about new books for school-aged kids. With summer vacation just around the corner, here are some great new titles to keep you reading all summer long.
Letters to Leo by Amy Hest. Annie's dad has finally given in and let her get a dog, so now Annie writes letters to her new pet during the school day so he can keep up with all of the exciting things that happen to her while she is away from him. Annie is not exactly a "model citizen" and there are lots of funny stories and drawings throughout the book. Recommended by Gigi from the Children's Library.
Not to cast any aspersions on America’s most beloved children’s poet, but there is much more to poetry for young people than the great Shel Silverstein. April is National Poetry Month, and thus a perfect opportunity to explore the wide world of children’s poetry.
From anthologies of works by modern children’s poets to poem picture books to novels in verse, children’s poetry is a wide open and growing genre full of humorous, touching, and imaginative writing that is sure to inspire and delight any child who is exposed to it.
Everyone, it seems, wants to read the Hunger Games – even elementary school kids. But how young is too young? These are, after all, books that take place in a post-apocalyptic world in which teenagers are forced to kill other teenagers. Surely, they are not appropriate for younger readers.
Or are they?
Although the plot of the books is somewhat shocking, the author gives her subject matter a thoughtful and thought-provoking treatment that rises above the gruesome premise. The main character, Katniss, is a hero in the classic sense – a strong and smart survivor who makes interesting and even admirable moral choices within the immoral universe in which she finds herself.
The TumbleBookLibrary is a collection of TumbleBooks -- animated, talking picture books -- with fiction, non-fiction and foreign language titles, Read-Alongs (chapter books with sentence highlighting and narration but no animation), TumbleTV which consists of pre-set playlists of a sequence of books, and Tumble Puzzles & Games.