Four weeks in, we had a breakthrough. Every kid sat still for the most of the story. Five weeks was even better. Every kid was doing the actions and most were singing along. Yes there are attention challenges, but with a few tricks I was able to get Storytime back on track. Here’s what I suggest:… Read More The Challenges of Post-COVID Storytimes
This board brings bold colours, fun textures, and a bright message to the children’s section, and I’m pretty pleased with it. In this space since early March had been a version of the Guess Who display. It’s a fun, interactive display. But there’s a problem with it. Kids love to reach up and trace their… Read More 3D Flower Bulletin Board Display
When COVID-19 hit, librarians around the world started offering virtual storytimes: some prerecorded, and some live. Many of us who opted for prerecorded have now shifted to live virtual storytimes, due to having less time to edit, changes in publisher copyright allowances, or because our website now has a full roster of storytime videos and… Read More How to Make Your Live Virtual Storytimes Sparkle
I recently had the pleasure of speaking on Middle Ground Book Fest‘s panel on Engaging Reluctant Readers. One of the questions was about strategies for reaching reluctant readers in the library. I went into detail about my one-on-one approach with readers, but I wanted to shed some light on another approach that I use: high… Read More Engaging Reluctant Readers During Book Talks
Librarians do not have to be mommies to their patrons. We can be caring, warm, helpful, and nurturing, yes. We can know what to say to calm a screaming toddler. We can captivate a room full of kindergartners. We might even love some of the kids that we work with. But we are so much… Read More No, You Don’t Have to Be a Mommy to Be a Good Children’s Librarian
What if the biggest threat to humanity wasn’t climate, disease, war, or monsters… but plants?
Thick, seemingly invincible black grass starts growing all over the world. It invades crops, destroys houses, and emits a dangerous pollen that everyone is allergic to. Everyone except for three young teens from British Columbia: Anaya, Petra, and Seth.… Read More YA Book Reviews: Bloom, Cinderella Is Dead, and Rules for Being a Girl
Middle Ground Book Fest is one bright, shiny, happy thing that’s in our library world right now. Let’s appreciate it, celebrate it, and lift it up. … Read More Middle Ground Book Fest: what is it, and why should you be excited?
This program was a huge draw (sorry I had to!) Kids come together and learn how to draw cute animals step by step. They also learn how to develop their own personal style, and how to infuse their drawings with characterization. It’s about drawing skills, yes. But it’s also about characterization skills. Storytelling. Humor. Artistic… Read More Draw Cute Animals – Tween Program Outline
A sewing program might seem a little traditional for a library, but let me assure you: that’s part of its charm! I was surprised when the kids in an afterschool program kept requesting needles, thread, and fabric. To make what? Anything! Pouches for knick knacks, pencil cases, and the most exciting of them all: stuffies.… Read More DIY Donut Stuffies for Kids
Albatross by Terry Fallis (2019) Delightful is the word that comes to mind. Terry Fallis books are funny – they always have a strong comedic premise – but they also have depth. They have a clear moral without being cheesy. And this book is my favourite of them all. Adam is a teenager who wants… Read More Book Reviews: Albatross, The Whisper Network, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, and The Need