Just Another Day in the Children’s Room….

 

#atleasttheyhadfun 

Adults in the Teen Space

 

Check out one of my recent posts for Teen Services Underground!

Adults in the Teen Space: http://www.teenservicesunderground.com/adults-in-the-teen-space/

Author Storytime with Anna Staniszewski

We are so, so lucky because a children’s bookstore recently opened in our hometown! I am still kind of in shock about it. It’s in a beautiful old house and has lots of little rooms and nooks to discover! It’s called Enchanted Passage and if you ever are in the area and have a chance to check it out, you really should. Children’s bookstores are a dying breed. Of course, I highly recommend checking your local library before going to buy books….but if you are purchasing gifts or a special book for yourself, books from any local/indie bookstore are the way to go! Enchanted Passage also has pretty much every Melissa & Doug toy known to man!

A few weeks ago my mom, daughter, and I visited the bookstore for a special author storytime with Anna Staniszewski and we had a great time! Anna read us her first picturebook, Power Down, Little Robot, published by Henry Holt. It’s a very cute story about a little robot who is doing everything he can to NOT go to bed and his “Mom Unit” who is very patiently trying to get him to into “recharge” mode. Sound familiar? It’s a classic story line but throw in some robots and you’ve got a really fun book for both kids and adults! The illustrations by Tim Zeltner are wonderful. When I think of robots, I think of cold, hard, metal, angles, points. His illustrations created a softness to the characters and kept the story warm and cozy, perfect for bedtime.

Power Down Robot final cover

Anna read her book and then gave us a sneak peek of her new picturebook, Dogosaurus Rex, (also Henry Holt) due out in August! It’s illustrated by Kevin Hawkes – who is one of my FAVORITE illustrators. It’s super cute! I can’t wait to have a copy. I already have it on order for my library! Anna also read a great popup book called If You’re a Robot and You Know It, which I have never heard of but am totally purchasing for my storytime collection. We all did a really fun/awkward version of “If you are happy and you know it!” We have a really cute video of it but as there were other people in it, I can’t post it. It was a great way to end the storytime and my daughter LOVED it. And I’m so excited because Anna will be visiting my library in April! YAY! I was lucky enough to have Anna as a writing professor for my MFA degree through Simmons, so we go way back and are totally besties…..Image result for winky face emoji

Dogosaurus Rex

Thanks to my mom for taking pictures! (With the exception of our silly storytime selfie!) Can you believe my two-year-old sat for storytime?! That’s how good it was!

Anna is also the author of several series for tweens & teens, including the UnFairy Tale Life series, The Dirt Diary series, and the Switched at First Kiss series. All of which can be found on her website: http://www.annastan.com

New Gig!

I’m super excited because I am now an official “Agent” for one of my favorite blogs, Teen Services Underground!! Their posts and ideas have been so helpful to me as a librarian so I am happy to have a chance to pay it forward. I’ll be sharing the link to my posts here. Please check them out, as well as all of the other great posts by the other talented Agents!

February post: Adventures of a Super(visor) Librarian 

 

 

 

 

March 10th post: Adults in the Teen Space

 

 

 

When You Get a Thank You Note Just for Doing Your Job….

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BunnyBear: A Picturebook Review

https://www.albertwhitman.com/book/bunnybear/

Image from publisher website – Albert Whitman & Company

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I honestly had no idea what to expect when I started reading this book – other than I was psyched to see the beautiful illustrations by Carmen Saldana. Also, I was intrigued by the extremely adorable title – can I actually purchase a Bunnybear somewhere?!?

I was not expecting such a cute book with a lesson about acceptance and being true to yourself to be so well done – yay for author Andrea Loney!!

Bunnybear is a bear on the outside and can do everything the other bears do. But inside, he feels like a bunny. The other bears don’t understand why he doesn’t act like a bear, so Bunnybear leaves, only to find….a bunny! He is so excited that he follows the bunny right underground, intothe rabbit warren and “they were tiny and fluffy and bouncy, like Bunnybear’s heart.” But he quickly realizes that as much as he wants to be a bunny, he doesn’t fit in here either, because he is still a bear on the outside. The bunnies make him leave and he curls into a heartbreaking ball because he doesn’t know what to do or where to go.

Enter Grizzlybun. Grizzlybun is….yup, a bunny on the outside who feels like a bear on the inside. And Bunnybear totally gets it. Together, they can be themselves. And more than themselves, because now they are not just bunnies or bears….”they were friends and they were happy.” And everyone lives happily ever after and they bunnies and bears have a party and they meet other animals who are more than themselves – the last page is very cute.

But it’s the first sentence that really kills me: There once was a bear who was more than a bear.” He’s not just different or missing some essential “bear-ness.” He’s more than the sum of his parts.

As other reviewers have written, it is a great book to use as a conversation starter for kids, which is true. But I think it’s a great book to read for the sake of reading. Image result for drawn heart

A few of my other favorite books with simliar themes:

Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall

 

Princess Smartypants by Babette Cole 

 

Owen by Kevin Henkes 

Teen Book Review: Lockwood & Co Series

The Creeping Shadow (Lockwood & Co., #4)The Creeping Shadow by Jonathan Stroud
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love, love, LOVE this series. It has all the elements of a great (in my opinion) teen novel. Or any novel, really.

 

1) It’s British. Need I say more?
2) It has ghosts.
3) It takes place in modern day, but has a throwback feel to another time – Victorianish – which is probably due to the fact that ghosts are real and becoming more and more prevalent (they also kill people) so progress has somewhat shifted to deal with the “Problem” as it is referred to.
4) The characters are completely believeable and likeable.
5) The teens in this world are powerful because only they can see the ghosts and destroy them, but the struggle with adult authority is still a major underlining theme throughout the series.
6) It has a HINT of romance – the kind that is only present in a sentence or two in each book, but then it’s gone and you wonder if it was ever there at all. It grows slightly as the series goes on, but it’s not at all the main theme.

If you haven’t read the series, you really need to. And start at the beginning!

View all my reviews

Gift Book Review ~ Me: A Compendium by Wee Society

click image for Amazon.com listing

I bought this for my cousin’s almost-seven-year-old daughter for Christmas and I just had to share how cool this book is! It’s like a journal, but even more fun because each page asks you different questions about yourself and you fill in the answers, either by writing them or by drawing a picture. It’s a beautiful hardcover book with really cute, modern graphics that are wonderfully gender-neutral. You could potentially give one every year – they would be fun to look back on (until they grow out of it.) I kind of want one for myself!

I also thought there were some great ideas in here for a Tween program or for an interactive library display!

 

And what did my cousin’s daughter think of it? Well, she opened it and it ended up on the floor almost immediately. However, this was to be expected since it wasn’t a beanie boo. I think maybe she’ll like it once she looks through it. 😉

Cheers!

~ Miss Molly

 

Fun, Easy & Inexpensive Teen Programming: Decorating the Teen Space!

One of the “perks” of being on the Teen Advisory Board at my library is getting to set up displays and decorating in the Teen Space, especially for holidays. I usually make it part of a regular meeting or schedule a “special” meeting to decorate. In the past few years, the teens have made a “book tree” for Christmas. This is a really fun activity that requires teamwork and some engineering – it totally counts as a STEAM program! The first year they made a huge tree, but this took a LONG time, so we do a smaller version on the counter now. It’s still pretty cool! We have a large book sale room so we use those books to make the tree and then put them back later.

I give the teens a book cart, some cheap decorations from the dollar store, plus some candy and hot chocolate, and they seem to have a pretty good time! Another perk is that my Teen Advisory Board members earn volunteer hours for attending meetings and any teen program at the library, even if it’s not technically “volunteering.” It’s like a form of payment, and while most people say the teens will come if you offer them food, I have found that they are more likely to come when they are going to earn volunteer hours!

This year, my teens did an amazing job of decorating the Teen Space, especially when it came to using old books! 

Happy (Late) Thanksgiving!

I had to share this amazing centerpiece made by my mom (who also cleaned and cooked an entire dinner on Thanksgiving !) She is also a librarian – we are very good at multi-tasking.

book-turkey

(This is obviously a Pinterest idea, but I don’t know where it came from!)