Archive for parent stuff

fun with…music for the whole family

Kids love music.   And often they love to sing, move and dance to the music they hear (or even sometimes make themselves!)

Research has proven that listening to and participating with music is beneficial to kids in many ways, especially in the development of language and literacy skills.   For example, how did most people likely learn their ABC’s?   Almost certainly, we learned them by singing that oh so familiar song.  Combining music with information stimulates the brain and makes that information easier to remember.

A child’s instinctive ability to listen and decode a song extends to reading.  Just as they have sung along with a familiar song, so they will read along in a familiar book.  The sense of rhythm obtained from listening to music will also help young readers to identify patterns, like rhyming words, which will help them learn to read.  Because songs automatically break down words into smaller sounds through tones, singing particularly helps to develop the early literacy skill phonological awareness.

While the traditional songs of Raffi and Pete Seeger are almost always a popular choice with kids, there are many wonderful cd’s at Lane that will entertain the whole family.  Be sure to check them out!

You Are My Little Bird — Elizabeth Mitchell  Lane Library info

Ralph’s Word: Happy Lemons — Ralph Covert  Lane Library info

Bloom — Zak Morgan  Lane Library info

Jim Gill Makes It Noisy in Boise, Idaho — Jim Gill  Lane Library info

No! — They Might Be Giants  Lane Library info

Peter, Paul and Mommy — Peter, Paul and Mary  Lane Library info

Family Dance — Dan Zanes  Lane Library info

Snacktime! — Barenaked Ladies  Lane Library info

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no toddler time storytime on May 28th

Because of the Memorial Day holiday week, there will be no storytime on May 27th.  But we start right back up in June (can you believe that next week is JUNE?!)  All summer storytimes at the Hamilton branch will be on the same days and times that they were during the spring.  Toddler Time will continue to be on Thursdays at 11am.

We will have many fun and exciting programs this summer for kids up to 12 years old, so be sure to check out our summer schedule and come visit us at the library!

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entertain your brain

Your kids can entertain their brains this summer with the Lane Library reading challenge.  For every 20 books OR 12 hours your child reads, they can complete a game card and be entered into a drawing for a brand new bicycle.  Game cards are available at any Lane Library, or you can get one at the library’s website.  For more information, ask a library staff member or read all about it on the summer reading section of the website.

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summer reading programs @ the Lane

Summer Reading is here!  From bikes to worms, we have it this summer @ the Lane!

If you have kids younger than 6, be sure to join us @ the Lane for storytimes.  Toddler storytimes for ages 0-36 months are on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11 am, and preschool storytimes for ages 3-6 are on Mondays and Wednesdays at 11 am.  This summer, as the library is bing remodeled, storytimes are in the temporary children’s area in the library’s basement meeting room.

School age kids get their own programs this summer!  The Lane is offering a wide variety of programs for ages 6 and up this summer.  School age programming is on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 2 pm.  On Tuesdays through July 1, kids can make a v-cast or podcast of their favorite books.  This program requires registration, so please call 894-1409 to sign up.  Thursday programs are at the Ross Avenue side of Millikin Woods Park on the West Side of Hamilton, and do NOT require registation.  The next one is Race Day, so if you have a speedy kid, be sure to rush right over to join us at Millikin Woods!

For more information on summer programs, visit our website or call us at 894-1409.

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2008 notable books for children

Each year the group known as ALSC (Association for Library Service to Children) issues a list of the “best of the best” books published for children ages birth through 14.  Click here to see the list for 2008.  Be sure to check for availability of these titles at the Lane Library website, or call the children’s department at 894-1409, and we will be happy to check on titles for you.  Happy reading!

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early literacy

Before a child can learn to read, he or she needs to understand that there is a connection between the sounds they hear and the letters they see on a page.  Of course, the first step is this process is learning to say and write the alphabet.  But letter awareness is not enough, a child also needs to hear how letters sound and connect those sounds to the written symbols.  Here are some activities that may help your child begin to associate the letter sounds they hear with the written language they see.

  • Make the alphabet a tactile experience.  Construct letters from sand paper, macaroni, clay, or even pennies.  Say the letter sound with your child as they touch and feel each letter.
  • Make the letters of the alphabet a constant topic of conversation with your child.  Point out and sound out letters and words on signs, toys, in stores and restaurants, on cereal boxes.
  • Have a set of letters, magnetic or otherwise, available for your child to play with around the house.  Match up letters with objects (t for table, c for cat), and be sure to say the word and its beginning sound aloud.  Use the letters to make words, and encourage your child to make words as well.  Nonsense words are fine here, you are concentrating on combining the written word with the appropriate sounds.  Just be sure to read the words you make aloud.
  • Read to your child.  Every so often, place your finger under the words as you are reading, to show the child that you are not reading the pictures, but the written symbols on the page.

Have fun helping your child learn to read!

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tips for reading out loud

Kids love to hear books read aloud.  Need some tips for reading out loud?  Check out these tips from Reading Rockets.

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book some fun

Let’s book some fun with snow!

First, read the book Snowballs by Lois Ehlert (Lane Library info here), and find out just how fun making a snowman (and more!) can be.   If it’s snowing outside, go out and make your own snow family.

After you have read the book, get ready to make an indoor snowperson.  Use three paperplates per snowperson.  Help your child go around the house and collect as much realia as possible–junk mail, craft stuff, scraps of material and old clothes, birthday cards, buttons, stickers, anything you can find that can be spared for a craft.  Have your child glue these bits of realia to the snowperson, using the book Snowballs for ideas if necessary.  When your child is done decorating their snowperson, they can fill in the empty spots on the paper plates by gluing on cotton balls.  For a twist, use marshmallows instead.  The marshmallows will stick to the plate like magic if you just lick them first!  And of course, be sure to have extras for snacking.  Don’t forget to make a face (hat, clothes, scarf!) for your snowperson.  You could even make arms and/or legs using pretzels.  Finally, attach the three paper plates together using several pieces of masking tape (or punch holes in the bottom and top of the plates where they will join together, thread yarn or string through the holes, and knot securely).

Have fun reading about and making snowpeople!

For lots more snow activities, click here.

–Miss Tracey

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early literacy

For a basic review of early literacy, click here.

The early literacy concept of Print Awareness includes learning that reading and writing follow basic rules such as moving from top-to-bottom and left-to-right, and that written language is related to oral language.   An example of print awareness is a child’s ability to point to the words on the page of a book.  Print Awareness is a reliable predictor of future reading achievement.

Your child’s print awareness can be encouraged by pointing out and reading words everywhere you see them – on signs, labels, at the grocery store and post office.  Also, as you read to your child, occasionally point to the words on the page–this will show your child that the story that you are reading comes from the words on the page and not just the pictures.

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early literacy

For a basic review of early, or emergent, literacy, click here.

Phonological awareness is the ability to hear and manipulate the smaller sounds
in words, for example the ability to say whether or not two words rhyme or the ability to put two word chunks together to make a word.  There are many games that parents can play with their children to help develop a child’s phonological sensitivity.

One game would be to categorize words by their beginning sound.  A fun way to do this is to have a scavenger hunt through the house finding everything that begins with a certain letter.  Go on a “D” hunt and find a desk, a doll, a dinosaur and anything else you can find that starts with the letter “D” sound.

Another fun activity is to make new words together by rhyming.  These words don’t even have to be real words, it’s the sound that’s most important in this game.  Start with the word “dog” and change the beginning sound to get “fog”, “log”, “sog”, “pog”…

Have fun with these games!  For more information on phonological awareness, click here.

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