Tuesday, September 27, 2016

10 Holiday Children's Books With Rich Latino Holiday Traditions

Whether you’re looking for the perfect stocking stuffer for your budding bookworm or a gift that will teach your kids about their cultural roots, look no further than these holiday-themed books.
Here are 10 books that celebrate diverse Latino families and their rich holiday traditions.

  • A Piñata In A Pine Tree, by Pat Mora

    In this Latino twist on “The Twelve Days of Christmas” a little girl recounts the gifts her amiga gave to her, including doce angelitos celebrando (twelve angels rejoicing) and a piñata in a pine tree. The book includes both English and Spanish phrases, and features a handy glossary and pronunciation guide. 

  • ‘Twas Nochebuena, by Roseanne Greenfield Thong

    ‘Twas the night before Christmas and the jovial Latino family in this book is stirring up hot chocolate and decorating the house in preparation for a traditional Latino celebration known as Nochebuena

  • Merry Navidad, by Alma Flor Ada

    This book contains a collection of English and Spanish Villancicos (Christmas carols) from Peru, Chile, Argentina and many other Latin American countries.

  • When Christmas Feels Like Home, by Gretchen Griffith

    After moving from Mexico to the United States with his family, Eduardo’s family promises him that he will feel at home by Christmas. Though initially doubtful, Eduardo soon realizes his family was right.

  • Feliz Navidad, by Jose Feliciano

    Set to José Feliciano’s “Feliz Navidad,” this book teaches children about traditional Puerto Rican parrandas, a holiday tradition in which households are visited by a group of dancing and singing friends, family and musicians.

  • Pablo’s Christmas, by Hugo C. Martin

    When young Pablo’s mother announces that she is going to have a baby, his father decides to find work in America to support them. Pablo tries his best to fill his father’s shoes during the holidays by finding and decorating a Christmas tree and making his own gifts. In the end, Pablo receives a surprise gift of his own.

  • The Miracle Of The First Poinsettia: A Mexican Christmas Story, by Joanne Oppenheim

    Poinsettias are native to Mexico, but they can be found in households around the world during the holidays. This book tells the tale of how this beautiful red plant came to be.

  • Mimi’s Parranda, by Lydia M. Gil

    Parrandas (Puerto Rico’s version of caroling) are Mimi’s favorite holiday tradition. But when she finds out she and her family won’t be able to make their annual Christmas trip to Puerto Rico, she becomes morose and decides to spend the holidays in bed. That is until Mimi hears the familiar sounds of guiros, maracas and tambourines outside her bedroom door. Could it be that her family brought the parranda to her? 

  • Too Many Tamales, by Gary Soto

    Maria and her cousins offer to help her mother make tamales for Christmas Eve. Things were going well until Maria accidentally drops her mother’s diamond ring into a giant batch of the holiday staple. Children will enjoy reading about how Maria and her cousins attempt to eat their way out of trouble.

  • The Night Of Las Posadas, by Tomie dePaola

    Sister Angie always leads Las Posadas — a reenactment of Mary and Joseph’s search for shelter. But she’s too ill to attend this year. Making matters worse, the people who were supposed to play Mary and Joseph in the procession are caught in a snowstorm. But thanks to a mysterious couple who step in at the last minute, the show goes on and the town is able to celebrate this cherished religious tradition.

Children's Literature Events Happening in New York

Click on the link below to discover many children's literature events happening in our area.
 Be sure to join in the fun!


Friday, August 19, 2016

The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems Exhibit

Do you love books by Mo Willems? The New York Historical Society Museum and Library has an awesome exhibit right now called "The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems" until September 25, 2016.
Read below from their website!:

Mo Willems’ beloved children’s book characters speak with a distinctly New York accent, from Trixie’s very first Brooklyn “Aggle Flaggle Klabble!” utterance to the Nichols and May-esque comedy duo of Elephant and Piggie to a public transportation-obsessed Pigeon. This spring, the New-York Historical Society presents The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems, a rollicking journey across a career that started on Sesame Street and led to a laundromat in Park Slope.
Since the publication of Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! in 2003, Willems has amassed an impressive list of New York Times best-selling adventures that have garnered him three Caldecott Honors, two Geisel Medals, five Geisel Honors, and an inaugural spot in the Picture Book Hall of Fame. Previous to his publishing career, Willems won six Emmy Awards for his writing on PBS’s Sesame Street, created the Cartoon Network’s Sheep in the Big City, and was the head writer for Codename: Kids Next Door. He has written two musicals based on his books, Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical and Elephant & Piggie’s We Are In a Play!, both commissioned by the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. 
The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems exhibition brings together original art, sketches, and inspirational drawings from Willem's most popular series, plus stand-alone classics such as Leonardo the Terrible Monster and That is NOT a Good Idea!. It displays the efforts behind the effortlessness, the seriousness behind the silliness, and the desire, as Willems says, “to think of my audience, not for my audience.” His ability to crisply weave together life lessons and humor creates artful volumes that speak to all, regardless of size.
New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street)
New York, NY 10024
Phone (212) 873-3400
TTY (212) 873-7489


Museum galleries and Museum store

Tuesday-Thursday, Saturday - 10am-6pm
Friday - 10am-8pm
Sunday - 11am-5pm
Monday - CLOSED

Patricia D. Klingenstein Library

Tuesday-Saturday - 10am–4:45pm
Sunday-Monday - CLOSED
Closed Saturdays between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Unbury the Past

The following apps and websites on ancient history help present  old information through a new lens, and may just pique students' interest in an ancient culture or civilization.


Ancient History Encyclopedia

Free Grades 7 and up

The AHE cites itself as a small nonprofit dedicated to providing high-quality history content to enthusiasts, teachers, and students for free. Students can explore topics using a time line, a geographical search, and natural language searches. The site is well designed and organized and contains information in many formats-videos, photos, maps, and text.


Free Grades 6 and up
Part of the greater National Geographic site, AWN is of the quality one would expect for NatGeo.  Highlighting contemporary news concerning discoveries about the ancient world and ancient artifacts, this site connects current events with ancient history.  Some recent examples include the destruction of ancient sites by ISIS, an in-depth look at the life of Bronze Age women, and the Shroud of Turin.  Since AWN is a part of the larger NatGeo site, natural language searches aren't as fruitful as on a dedicated site.


Free Grade 5 and up

Truly an online version of a textbook, the site features information about major aspects of prehistoric world an takes readers through Egypt, the early Middle East, ancient Greece, ancient Rome, Africa, South Asia, China, Japan, and South and Central America.  Accessible language is used to describe the time periods and major events; sidebars contain links that lead to external websites on the topic.  While some of these links may be broken from time to time, they do provide additional information on most subjects.


Timeline Eons (iOS)

Free version; $5.99 paid version Grades 4-8

This powerful app features a time line of  the history of the universe, complete with images, photos, and clean, explanatory text. Though the app itself doesn't provide many options for  interaction-save for scrolling through the history of the Earth (and the universe)-teachers and librarians could use it to challenge students to find a historical  event and unearth an unusual fact.  A good resource that offers a clear, visual representation of the history of the planet, which might just blow some kids away when they see the vast amount of time Earth has been around.

Mummy (iOS)

$1.99 Grades 6-8

A powerful, in-depth look into the preservation of the dead in ancient Egypt.  Hortesnakht, a priestess who lived sometime in the third century BCE, is a well-preserved mummy, which has been studied by researchers at the Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest.  The app includes a slew of facts about Horesnakht's life and death, including photos of her mummified body-wrapped and un-wrapped.  Photos of her body being transported and examined and the resulting CT scans are included, but perhaps the most compelling illustrations are the facial reconstruction images.

Britannica Kids Ancient Egypt (iOS)

$4.99 Grades 5-8

Essentially an interactive textbook on Egyptian history, Britannica Kids Ancient Egypt is a rich resource with detailed information. The all includes sections on hieroglyphics, gods and the afterlife, dynasties of Egypt, a sampling of photos, and an interesting section on everyday life.  The app even has few games that will appeal to users seeking a history-themed break from what can become monotonous reading in some of the other sections. 

Fun Twitter accounts to follow

@historyancient (History of the Ancient)
Fun quizzes and punchy pictures serve as reminders of yesteryear.

@bennu (Talking Pyramids)
Peruse daily postings of "breaking news" about ancient history.  An original platform for hearing about new academic projects centered on history.


Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Children's Book Week is coming!

Join us as we celebrate the most wonderful time of the year!

Come to the Jefferson Market Library on Sunday, May 1 to kick-off Children's Book Week, the annual celebration of children's books and the joy of reading.
"Children's Book Week Kick-Off"
Kids ages 5 to 12 and their families are invited to participate in age-based activities including a picture book "Story Ball" where kids create the story along with illustrators; and a rousing game of Trivia where authors pair up with kids from the audience to answer questions about their favorite books! There will be a super fun yoga session followed by crafts for all ages.

Stick around to meet the authors and illustrators, get your books signed, and have your picture taken with a very special and "Curious" guest (hint: his best friend wears a big yellow hat)! Book sales provided by neighborhood indie bookstore, Books of Wonder!

The library is opening early just for you! Join us from 11am to 1pm and meet some of your favorite authors and illustrators including:
  • Phil Bildner (Marvelous Cornelius)
  • Nick Bruel (Bad Kitty Goes to the Vet)
  • Sarah Beth Durst (The Girl Who Could Not Dream)
  • Alan Katz (The Day the Moustache Took Over)
  • Nancy Krulik (Magic Bone: Broadway Doggie)
  • Kevin Lewis (My Truck is Stuck)
  • Meghan McCarthy (The Wildest Race Ever)
  • Sesame Street's Louis Henry Mitchell 
  • Eric Velasquez (Looking for Bongo)
  • Susan Verde (I Am Yoga)
This event is free and open to the public!

Event Details

Date & Time:

Sunday, May 1 from 11:00 am - 1:00 PM
Jefferson Market Library
425 Avenue of the Americas (between West 9th and West 10th Sts.)
New YorkNY10011
Subway directions: 
Take the 1 or 2 to Christopher St.-Sheridan Sq or A,B,C,D,E,F,M to West 4 Street-Washington Square

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Best Early-Learning Blogs, Take 2

These are the rest of the best early learning blogs chosen by Lisa G. Kropp, Assistant Director of Lindenhurst Memorial Library. Enjoy!

READING WITH RED www.readingwithred.blogspot.ca
Wisconsin librarian Brooke Newberry focuses on all things early learning here. Find lots of creative play activity ideas to incorporate on the public floor of your library.

Colorful, fun, and exuberant, this is the work of Kendra Jones, a children's librarian in Washington.
Click on "Play, Baby, Play" for posts galore of replicable open-ended early learning activities.
The section on rhymes is dreamy.

SAROJ GHOTING www.earlylit.net
Filled with academic, practical, and theoretical best practices and advice, this must-read site from early literacy consultant Saroj Ghoting offers everything for novices in the field all the way up to
doctoral students.

STORYTIME KATE www.storytimekate.com
The link about "flannels" is simple and easy to use, with bright photographs showing a large variety
of flannel stories to re-create.

STORYTIME UNDERGROUND www.storytimeunderground.org
The brainchild of Cory Eckert, this is home base for a cadre of talented youth librarians who believe fully in the motto "sharing is caring." Seriously, the site is packed.

THE SHOW ME LIBRARIAN www.showmelibrarian.blogspot.com
Powered by Amy Koester, this blog is wonderful, especially for its dedication to all things STEAM.
Click on the label "early literacy" for related inspiration and top-notch program ideas to try at
your library.

I hope you check out all these wonderful resources!

The Best Early-Learning Blogs

Chosen by Lisa G. Kropp, the Assistant Director of the Lindenhurst Memorial Library in Lindenhurst, N.Y., these 14 of her favorite blogs do a wonderful job of promoting early learning. I am posting 7 of them today and the other 7 later this week.

Check them out!

ALSC BLOG www.alsc.ala.org/blog
Going way beyond early literacy, this is the collaborative blog for the Association for Library Service to Children. (ALSC).

BABIES NEED WORDS www.ala.org/alsc/babiesneedwords
The ALSC project is being supported by a collaborative blog tour, with many of the blogs mentioned here participating in spreading the word about why it is so critical to early learning success to talk, sing, read, and play with babies every day.

Started by staff from more than a dozen Colorado public libraries and the Colorado State Library, the blog provides a comprehensive approach to delivering and supporting early literacy services.

EVERY CHILD READY TO READ everychildreadytoread.ning.com
Not technically a blog, this version of a social network built around the ALSC/Public Library Association joint Every Child Ready to Read project contains suggested activities, resources, and

Created by Erin, a children's librarian at the Allen County Public Library (IN), this blog is filled with
great ideas for preschool and toddler storytimes, STEM/STEAM programming, and partnering with schools and other organizations.

JBRARY www.jbrary.com
Not sure where to begin when it comes to early literacy storytimes?  Tune in to Jbrary, literally.
Via a Youtube channel attached to the blog, you can search for themed playlists, all wonderful.

MISS MARY LIBERRY www.missmaryliberry.wordpress.com
Offering "adventures with preschoolers, picture books, and early literacy," this one offers inspiration for those who think they can't "do" early literacy.

Well that's the first 7; tune in later in the week for the other 7!!