- Recently I’ve grown rather fascinated with the academic children’s collections of the world. The rare book collections in particular. With that in mind, what do you do if you’re an institution that specializes in archived materials, and yet you still want to engage young readers in some capacity? Enter Teaching the untouchable, a great article by Dana Sheridan at the Cotsen Collection of Princeton University. Written for College and Research Libraries News the piece really delves deep into how to best conduct rare book programs with real honest-to-goodness children. Great stuff.
- Whatcha up to tonight? Got big Tuesday night plans? No? Excellent since there’s to be a Twitter chat between Debbie Reese of American Indians in Children’s Literature and brilliant librarian Allie Jane Bruce at 9:00 p.m. Just go to #SupportWNDB. Be there or be square.
- So cool. Over at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast, Jules got cartooned up. I would love it if that became a regular thing at her site. Everyone should cartoonify her when interviewed.
- Jules also tackled a recent re-illustrated title that will have librarians everywhere just shaking their heads, trying desperately to figure out where to put the darn thing in their collections. If you’re familiar with the 2001 picture book Jim’s Lion by Russell Hoban then you’ll have a hard time looking at its new incarnation without blanching. It’s one of the most innovative children’s books of the year but a psychological nightmare that would actually pair magnificently with Patrick Ness’s A Monster Calls, if nothing else. Jules has the scoop. Well played, she.
Wow. Just, wow. Kidlit TV is live, people, and boy does it look fancy. I mean just LOOK at that site! Someone put their heart and soul into it, that’s for sure. Makes me feel like a bit of a slacker, if I’m going to be honest. Boy howdy.
I am always very pleased with folks take public review sites like Amazon or Goodreads and use them to have a bit of fun. One Hamilton Richardson evidently must have sat through one Mr. Men book too many and the result is a series of thoroughly enjoyable “reviews” that are all distinctive in their own little ways. Thanks to Steve for the link.
- Sometimes you just don’t know if the name you see on a series is a real person or not. Take R.A. Montgomery, for example. Recently he passed away in his Vermont home, and if his moniker is ringing a couple bells that might be because he’s the fellow behind the Choose Your Own Adventure series. Like any good child of the 80s I devoured my own fair share of CYOA titles back in the day, perfecting the art of sticking all my digits in between the pages so that the moment I chose poorly I could instantly retrace my steps. There’s a metaphor lurking in that statement somewhere, I’d wager. Thanks to Mom for the link.
Christmas is on the horizon and you know what that means? Time to start trying to figure out what to purchase for the children’s literature-obsessed person in your life. Want an early idea? I know it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet but I just discovered that that Children’s Book Council sells their old Children’s Book Week posters in a variety of different forms, dating back to 1921. Everyone from N.C. Wyeth to the most recent one by Robin Preiss Glasser. Here are some of my own personal favorites:
Aussie kids love stickers, and I’ve pulled together a collection of sticker books to delight all ages. And the best thing? They’ve all been selected from the Boomerang Books Australia’s Top 1000 Bestselling Books list, which means you save 20% off the RRP. Great stuff, hey? First up is from the increasingly popular character, Peppa Pig in Peppa […]
It's the most fun you'll have with just 16 cards. Yep. Sixteen cards. Each player starts with one card; on their turn, they draw one card and decide which of their two cards they want to play, using that card's action. Last player standing wins the round. That's it. Give this game a shot, you'll... [...]
Every time we take this game with us on a trip, we end up giving it to the people we are visiting because they always fall in love with it. Just when you think you've used all your letters and are ready to take another letter and fit it in, someone else yells, "peel" three [...]
Here are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. As in last week's roundup, there are lots and lots of book lists, as well as several links to holiday gift guides. I will certainly be giving lots of books this year, especially to the kids in my life. Can't think of any of the kids who aren't getting at least one book, actually... Happy reading and gift-procuring!
Literacy, families and learning: Great Science Apps for Kids Aged 6-12 Years from @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/rIFJl
Author Jeff Kinney: I’ve realised childhood is a universal condition | @MetroUK http://ow.ly/rIIeK via @PWKidsBookshelf
Dolls in Literature: An Author Panel http://ow.ly/rIHAK @PublishersWkly #kidlit
Susan Cooper: libraries are the frontline in the war for the imagination | @GuardianBooks http://ow.ly/rIHUy via @PWKidsBookshelf
Book Lists and Awards
Some different choices from other lists in the Parents Magazine Best Children’s Books of 2013 | @tashrow http://ow.ly/rIEKi #kidlit
Stacked: "Best of 2013" YA List Breakdown, Part 2 http://ow.ly/rGaEk @catagator #yalit
Can't argue with most of these: 10 Young Adult Novels That Adults Should Read from @airshipdaily http://ow.ly/rE9BN #yalit
Latino Children's Literature That Should Top Lists from @NPRBooks http://ow.ly/rE9ka via @PWKidsBookshelf
Responding to last week's @WSJ article, @StaceyLoscalzo shares recommended Children’s Books for Grown-Ups http://ow.ly/rE2RW #kidlit
Into the Wardrobe: The Winners of the 2013 Filipino Readers' Choice Awards http://ow.ly/rE2NJ @TarieS #kidlit
The best children's literature of 2013 according to @GuardianBooks http://ow.ly/rE2hF via @bkshelvesofdoom #kidlit
The Cath in the Hat: A Year-End Round-Up of favorite #kidlit. Like me, Cath adores SOPHIE'S SQUASH and PENNY http://ow.ly/rE28B
12 Days of Mysteries: Day 1 at Sleuths, Spies, Aliblis with fine #kidlit mystery picks from @KKittscher http://ow.ly/rBlid
16 Winter-themed Chapter Books for Kids recommended by @momandkiddo (I love BREADCRUMBS) http://ow.ly/rBkEQ #kidlit
Guy Friday- Foul Trouble review plus list of basketball-themed books for middle schoolers from @msyingling http://ow.ly/rx25o #kidlit
It's Here! NYPL's Children's Books for Reading + Sharing 2013 | @NYPL http://ow.ly/rwYX1 via @bkshelvesofdoom @FuseEight #kidlit
Quite a solid response from @Jonathanhliu @GeekDads to questions about his male-author dominated picture book list http://ow.ly/rwZZj
Nice! Raising sci fi/fantasy loving kids to be the decent fans of tomorrow, w/ diverse SFF for kids @charlotteslib http://ow.ly/rz6Ma
Gift Ideas and Guides
A message to those without children about buying gifts for kids from the mom at I Gave Up By Noon http://ow.ly/rE3AQ via @fuseeight
Matchmaking with Books | How Becky Levine helps find books as gifts for kids http://ow.ly/rBmtD #kidlit
Making a list? Check these twice! | Suggestion lists for finding holiday gifts for kids from Joanne @ReadingRockets http://ow.ly/rBmRT
Looking for the just-right children's book this holiday season? @Scholastic Give the Gift of Reading Guide can help: http://bit.ly/1966CCJ
I do love the idea of book advent calendar. I'm going to try it next year. Meanwhile, read about one at Sunlit Pages http://ow.ly/rGqlY
Boys Read: Want a Boy to Read? Listen First. Guest article from Jake Ball @Booksforchildrn on helping boys find books http://ow.ly/rBmbv
Matching Books to Readers: @growingbbb reviews + likes @ZoobeanForKids book subscription service http://ow.ly/rBkc0
The 5Rs: Encouraging Early #Literacy Skills while reading with toddlers + preschoolers, from @readingwithbean http://ow.ly/rBhk1
Very nice! @100scopenotes + @mrschureads are giving away The 2013 Notable Children's Books from @NYTimes list http://ow.ly/rBlC7
Infographic | Homes of Classic Literature w/ floor plans. Incl. The Secret Garden http://ow.ly/rx2tC @terrysfabrics via @bkshelvesofdoom
On Reading, Writing, Publishing
Stacked: "Best of 2013" and "Best of 2012" YA Lists Compared & What We Should Talk About http://ow.ly/rIFFa @catagator #yalit
A Writer Can Be... a Super-Sneaky #Cybils Student: A Guest Post By @LauraPSalas http://ow.ly/rG6QS @scbwi via @leewind
Remember when books looked like this? "Who decided that only baby books should have pictures?" asks @LaurelSnyder http://ow.ly/rE2wC
Cynsations: Guest Post: @gregpincus on Writing & Marketing with Serious Lead Time http://ow.ly/rE2mR @CynLeitichSmith
Down-to-earth advice for writers on the publication process from @camphalfblood Rick Riordan http://ow.ly/rz6Qf
Love this! Waterstones spoofs Amazon drones with owls @TelegraphBooks http://ow.ly/rx0mN via @tashrow
RT @tashrow Kent University ‘penitent’ after belittling children’s books | Books http://buff.ly/18Xv8py #kidlit
Well-done piece by Alexandra Alter in @wsj on adults reading + driving up sales for #kidlit http://ow.ly/rwWKV #ChooseKind
Words on parenting to live by in this post sharing thoughts from Erma Bombeck @staceyloscalzo 's blog http://ow.ly/rBl4R
Picture Book News
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild fans, you can now download a printable activity kit from @itspeterbrown website http://ow.ly/rE5zj via @blueslipper
Via @100scopenotes the next @The_Pigeon Pigeon book will be THE PIGEON NEEDS A BATH (4/1/14) http://ow.ly/rGaRF #kidlit
Programs and Research
Good to hear at Guys Lit Wire: Many Thanks for a MOST Successful Holiday Book Fair for Ballou! http://ow.ly/rIFg2 @chasingray
Have You Registered for World Read Aloud Day? How will you celebrate? asks @frankisibberson http://ow.ly/rBkv9 @litworldsays
Schools and Libraries
Depressing! Los Angeles School Libraries Losing Materials as They Lose Librarians | School Library Journal http://ow.ly/rIHer @sljournal
Pew's Internet Study: How Americans Value Public Libraries in Their Communities. http://ow.ly/rG9jo via @bkshelvesofdoom
Top Ten Ways to Encourage Children to Read Over Winter Break by @katsok @nerdybookclub http://ow.ly/rz6WW #literacy
A very nice success story on creating a reading culture in a high school by @djolleywrites @nerdybookclub http://ow.ly/rx1I1
© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.
I wrote about Wonder Box in my GeekMom review of subscription boxes for kids:
I discovered Wonder Box when I was looking for a birthday gift for my three-year-old godchild, the brilliant daughter of my fellow GeekMom, Kristen Rutherford. When it comes to presents, I’m usually sort of a one-note giver — books, books, and more books — but this time, I wanted to give something different, something Kristen and Vivi could do together. Something hands-on, creative, and fun. The second I saw Wonder Box, an assortment of crafts and activities aimed at kids ages 3-6, I knew I’d hit a bullseye. You can order Wonder Box as a one-time gift, or sign up for a monthly subscription.
More details in the post. They’re now offering a $5 discount on orders through Jan. 13—use code HOLIDAY5-03 at checkout.
With all our snow last week outside we were inspired for an indoor snow craft...
- A strong, waterproof glue to create the inside/base of your snow globe (we used E6000 and let it dry overnight)
- A glass jar with a tight fitting lid
- Sparkles or glitter + spoon to stir
- Liquid Glycerin
- Hot glue and glue gun - or caulking would work to seal the globe and prevent leaking
DAY 1: The first thing to do to make a snow globe is decide on what should go inside. Play around with different figures, toys, ornaments, mini trees or whatever. The ones that turned out to be my favourites were the least conventional. You will want to create a bit of a raised base for any figurines you use so they will be visible inside the glass, You can use anything that is not water soluble - pebbles, glass marbles, etc. Flip the lid over and glue items to the underside of the lid, checking as you glue that the lid will still screw onto the jar. Definitely use your strongest glue to position the items. You can also glue something directly to the inside of the clean, dry jar if you would like it a bit more suspended. (Below we did this with the little girl on the horse ornament to give more of an appearance of flying.) Allow the glue to dry overnight.
DAY 2: Next you want to mix water + glitter (not too much or the glitter clumps together) + a tablespoon of liquid glycerin. Stir together.
Take your figurines and dunk them upside down and screw the lid on. Turn upside down and see how you like the results. If there is any changes to make there is still time...when you are sure its good, seal it shut with hot glue.
Today's post is short and sweet and links to some great gift ideas for everyone.
Writers on the Move (WOTM) has a number of amazing author members and as a feature for our readers (offering great gift ideas) and a promotional strategy for our members (since we're a marketing group), as of this year we'll be having a Writer's on the Move: Books as Gifts for the Holiday Season post and hopefully next year we'll make a free downloadable e-book, rather than a post.
The post is up at the WOTM site, but since there are a number of links involved, I'll simply link to it:http://www.writersonthemove.com/2011/11/writers-on-moves-authors-books-for.htmlPlease be sure to check it out! Until next time,Karen
Do you find yourself rushing around right before your child attends a birthday party looking for a card, gift wrap, etc? Oh and then go out a buy and expensive card at the store. That was me until last year. For the first time we made a batch for the year. Last year we did pop-up cards from a kit and their group of friends started to look forward to them, that was kind of fun.
The boys decided that not all their little girl friends and cousins would like a lizard, so we did some butterflies too. To make things easier (since my boys hate cutting and would rather writhe on the floor in agony about it than do it - hey I pick my battles). I cut out all the shapes from Larissa's templates for the lizard and made my own for the butterfly (If you want it shoot me an email I have no idea how to link it here).
All the boys had to do was paint and glue on tongues. (She does have cool eyes and dots to punch from paper with her tutorial.) Fun and a bit stress reliving after school activity.
The butterflies we did a press and paint - where you paint one side (add quite a bit of paint), fold it over on itself and then open the butterfly for a symmetrical pattern.
This year I also scored a giant shoebox full of maps at a garage sale, so that's our wrapping paper. E has been known to doodle on the map too, adding cars, restaurants, tents, houses etc, which makes it extra fun and more personal. Oh! Let your paint dry overnight before folding as she suggests - the 3-D detail makes it super cool! (You can fold the butterfly up the middle, then horizontal between the top and bottom wings and diagonal through the wings).
Happy Birthday Party-ing!
Know someone under the weather?
I love potato stamping. Here is a cute, easy get well card idea. It also helps to add some other things with card when dropping it at a friends. Home made soup is great, but I didn't get that far.
Fans of YA, you've got to check out these awesome gift ideas for Twilight, Harry Potter, Hunger Games, Vampire Academy, Mortal Instruments, Maximum Ride, Uglies, and Shiver.
My favorite has to be the Robward jewelry box. Ha! What's yours?
And don't miss these awesome YA Lit shirts for Twilight and Hunger Games fans. (Click on the shirt to see more sizes, colors and styles.)
If vampires and werewolves can get along, why can't everyone? Hilarious!
District 12 tees - Real or not real? I love these!
My wife often complains that I am impossible to shop for. One reason is that I am a cheapskate who would rather have 20 bucks in the bank than a DVD of Batman Begins. Another reason is that I am an adult, and when there is something that I want, I can buy it for myself.
So, I already have everything I want, and don’t want what I don’t need. What is a wife to do? This article will attempt to give you some food for thought when you are shopping for your man.
1) Food: Guys love food. Two of the gifts that I have most enthusiastically accepted were a can of cashews and a giant Snickers bar. An upscale alternative would be a Meat-of-the-Month Club subscription (not kidding, btw), or some kind of grilling accessory that will make his meatcraft more exact.
2) Hobby Enhancers: While each man has his own interests, one thing is the certain; someone has devised a way to make it even more awesome. Whether it is a rumbling seat for his racing videogame, increased peripheral vision paintball goggles, a 10x zoom nature photography lens, or a simple book light, there is a gift to make his hobby experience even better. This will also provide the secondary benefit of signaling that you support rather than resent his “man time” (whether that is true or not).
3) Intangibles/Service: I don’t mean coupons for sex (we know that “certain restrictions apply”). If your man says that he doesn’t want anything, that means he doesn’t want any “thing”. He would probably still appreciate someone else cleaning the basement, his favorite meal (back to gift idea #1), or a day to devote entirely to enjoying his gift from idea #2. For example, when my wife gave me the final Harry Potter book, she also gave me the entire day (chore and cooking free) to read it.
4) Make his life easier: Similar to Hobby Enhancement, this category seeks to make his daily grind easier. Does he have a long commute? Maybe an MP3 player could make it seem shorter. Maybe it could even BE shorter with a GPS. Does the dog make messes, run away, etc… how about obedience school? Is his computer agonizingly slow? Try a RAM upgrade. Maybe you can give him the best gift, more time for himself and you.
5) A Personalized Children’s Book: No man’s library is complete without one.
I don't think I'm the only one that has extra envelopes from the stack of greeting cards I sent? These could also be made from received envelopes.
1. Trim off one end of the sealed envelope.
2. Create a fold crease (both forward and back) and the uncut end of the envelop
3. Open envelop from cut end.
4. Fold corners into envelop seam.
5. Use double-sided tape to secure corners to base of the new "bag".
6. Stand and fill.
7. Decorate (this is a lesson learned - easier to decorate before assembling)
8. I sealed the top of the envelop with double-sided tape.
For another way to make a gift bag from an envelop to create a more square shaped bag - see the great tutorial on How About Orange
These are great for small gifts like the little items I'm taking to a "Favourite Things" party tonight...should be fun.
I used 1/2 yard of fleece for this project, a gift for our 5-year old neighbour.
1. cut 3 equal layers, lay flat on top of each other
2. Sew a seam up the middle (two seams next to each other if you like), leave 4-6inches at the top and bottom to fringe.
3. Cut fringe all around the scarf, through all 3 layers of fabric.
Dress up is always a hit at our house. We have a basic batman and superman t-shirt that we use for Pajamas. This is an easy, no-hem cape.
It is lightweight, thin cotton fabric and easily removable from a sleeping child so they don't get tangled up in it.
Pink the edges of what you will use for a cape. I measured the shoulders and then cut to the bottom at the wideth of the fabric, in a triangle, with a slightly curved bottom cut. If you fold your fabric in half lengthwise to cut it at least both sides will be the same...
Sew Velcro (prickly side on the cape) on each top corner.
Sew velcro (soft side on the pajamas) on the top of each shoulder right across the seam.
I saw this great idea and tutorial on Once Upon a Holiday. Surprise balls! My mom, sisters and I made these for a Christmas Eve surprise, but they would be fun for a New Year's tradition or birthday or just a rainy/snow day.
Click the link above for the great tutorial. I found it was great to start with something larger, I used the fake ice cube with the bug in it. Then you have something to build your ball around. My mum found some crepe paper streamers already in rainbows of colour which was fun to unwrap.
It was so fun to see the joy of discovery at each prize.
For my boy's friend's birthdays I love to be able to give something personal and handmade if I have my act together. The boys get excited about it and help a lot with design ideas. This last weekend we had 2 birthday parties to attend. Our first friend needed a super hero outfit...
The cape is actually cut from the bottom piece of the Emmeline apron pattern, it has just the right shoulder size, cape angle and nicely curved bottom. I roll-hemmed around the sides, using a lightweight cotton and lightweight iron-on webbing to add the appliqué pieces then stitched around each shape. I added a wide grosgrain ribbon to the top for a tie-on.
There is a great tutorial on bow-making at How About Orange.
These, like hers, are made from magazine pages. I had a little fun with this earlier this week. I don't know when I'm going to need these, but I'm ready!
So with two boys birthdays coming up (and my darling Mum's). I've been thinking a lot about presents and wrappings, Here is an easy recycled gift box - you could paint/stamp/sticker/decorate the outside or use some pretty ribbon. Basically you are turning a box inside-out.
1. Cut off top to size you need. try to open the box at the adhesive to keep the flaps rather than tearing it or cutting it.
Cut new closing flaps at the end of the box you had to cut and angle corners in slights. Mirror the flaps on the bottom of the box.
Fold inward, it is helpful to crease the fold with a bone folder but not completely necessary. Tape up the sides.
Add gift and seal top shut.
A birthday/princess crown for a little friend. A tip - sew embellishments on the first layer of felt (the jewel is also a hair barrette). Buttons make great embellishments and felt pieces can be changed out, this crown has flowers and hearts. I cased the elastic in ribbon to make it a little prettier and more comfortable on the hair.
Emma Walton Hamilton
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Books really do make the best gifts, for everyone on your list (and especially kids). Here are just a few reasons why:
* Books are evergreen – they keep on giving, well beyond the day they are received. They give with each read, and if they are subsequently shared or passed down, they keep on giving. They are like presents that can be opened over and over again.
* Books send a message to the recipient beyond that of the book itself. They tell the reader, “I care about you. I think of you as this sort of person, and therefore I think you would enjoy this book.”
* Books educate, inform and inspire. They broaden consciousness and perspective. They also cultivate curiosity, nurture the imagination, and promote a sense of wonder.
* Books provide outstanding long-term value for a relatively low cost.
* Giving young people books as gifts subliminally underscores the connection between reading and the joy of receiving, thus strengthening the association between books and pleasure.
* There are countless types, genres, styles, subjects and authors to choose from, maximizing your opportunity to find something uniquely suited to each recipient.
* If you are overwhelmed by options, or not sure where to begin to find the right book for a loved one, there are myriad resources to help. Your local bookseller is trained to help match the right book to the right person. You can also explore Amazon.com’s “listmania” lists and “Customers who bought this book also explored…” feature. You can pick up a copy of the New York Times Book Review, Publishers Weekly, American Libraries magazine or any number of other publications dedicated to reviewing books. There are even websites geared to helping people find books they love – one to explore is www.goodreads.com.
Plus, I’ll be posting next on great books to buy (or give) about reading and writing.
So give the best gift of all this year. Give books!