The Long Ride Home

A new picture book recently released tells the poignant story of two best friends, a koala and a tiger. On a long car ride home, the koala friend is reminiscing about the good times they’ve had together in the past. But as the car ride ends, it turns out they had lived next door to one another, until the tiger moved away. A sweet children’s story about separation, just in time for the angst of starting school…

Children’s library play area

I recently read an article in Children & Libraries about the importance of play in early literacy development. You needn’t spend a fortune on toys to support this learning for babies and toddlers. Find out how to make some simple tabletop activities in a blogpost by a new youth services assistant, Kirsten Caldwell. She suggests a simple sorting activity for younger children, and making tangram shapes to laminate and use as puzzles, or a Mr. Potato Head made from felt for older kids.

The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story

I came across this book recently and it reminded me of the Lisa See novel The Island of Sea Women, about the female South Korean divers who harvest a variety of sea life to sell for their income. This story is the children’s picture book version, with wonderful illustrations by Jess Snow and informative text by Tina Cho. There is a brief explanation of haenyeo on the back pages, and I found it to be a fascinating subject.

For English language learners

I attended a workshop this week geared towards helping children who are English language learners. One of the resources shared was Colorin colorado, ‘a bilingual site for educators and families of English language learners.’ Developed to help parents, families, teachers and librarians, Colorin colorado has many articles, books, lessons and links to guide people learning English. The home page promotes current events appropriate for younger people. There are lessons for literacy, language and vocabulary instruction, videos, web casts, and articles to guide children to success. The site is worth a visit for any parent or teacher regardless of what language is spoken. They have a wealth of terrific resources to explore (supported by the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers).