My People by Langston Hughes photographs by Charles R. Smith Jr.

The famous poem by Langston Hughes, My People, is translated into pictures by the talented Charles R. Smith Jr. winning the Corretta Scott King illustrator award for 2010. The poem speaks to the struggles and triumphs of African Americans and the longing for a place to belong.

Kids Read Comic Convention June 12-13

2010 Kids Read Comics2010 Kids Read Comics

Kids Read Comics Convention is a totally free event that unites kids, teens, parents, teachers and librarians with professional artists and writers from the comics and animation fields. The aim is to introduce kids to worlds of imagination while unlocking their creative impulses and to serve that goal, programs included are:
• hands-on workshops
• panels and presentations for kids, families, and educators
• a chance for kids to meet and chat with comics and animation professionals
• the opportunity for kids to have their own art portfolios reviewed

Be sure to stop by the AADL Comic Artists Forum table to see and purchase the works of our homegrown participants.

This year’s convention will be at the Henry Ford Centennial Library in Dearborn, Michigan on Saturday, June 12 and Sunday, June 13 (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) .

The Ultimate in LEGO Books

LEGOs are awesome. They were awesome when I was a kid, and they are awesome now when I play with them with other peoples’ kids. The library has a slew of books for LEGO maniacs of all levels. My top two: LEGO Star Wars: A Visual Dictionary, and it's just that. It has the best images and descriptions of all things LEGO & Star Wars. I could stare at the pages for hours. For a history of LEGOs, info on various sets that have been manufactured, and descriptions of the theme parks, etc., check out The LEGO Book.

And it’s not too early to save the date for AADL’s annual LEGO contest on August 5! Check the new AXIS brochure for details.

The Little Piano Girl by Ann Ingalls & Maryann Macdonald

Mary Lou Williams began playing the keyboard when she was four. She mastered all music styles from ragtime to the blues and played her way into the hearts of anyone who heard her. She taught jazz greats like Charlie Parker, Theolonios Monk and Dizzy Gillespie. Read about this amazing jazz legend in The Little Piano Girl

Jumping Beans

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Are you looking for something to do in between storytime sessions? Come on down for creative movement, dancing and singing, when Kris Groh and Noah Haiduc Dale turn us all into Jumping Beans on Wednesday, May 12 at 10 am at the Downtown Library.

Henry Aaron’s Dream by Matt Tavares

Henry Aaron wanted nothing more than to be a major league baseball player. He was told not to get his hopes up since there were no negro ball players at that time. Not having a bat, a ball or racism were going to stop him from achieving his dream. When Jackie Robinson became the first ball player in the big leagues, Henry Aaron knew he would one day play for them too. Matt Tavares tells the story of Henry “Hank” Aaron in clear concise language. Tavares's illustrations capture the triumph of Henry Aaran’s achievements.

George Washington Carver by Tonya Bolden

Gerorge Wasington Carver is known for his versatile use of peanuts. Few people know that he was an agricultural genius and a conservationist whose motto was “waste not, want not.” He was hired by Booker T. Washington to run the agricultural department at Tuskegee Institute teaching courses and doing research. Tonya Bolden tells the story of George Washington Carver from his humble beginnings as a slave to fame and prosperity as an adult. Photographs of Carver and key events in his life add intimacy to the book.

Make it and Shake It!

We will be dancing in the aisles this Sunday at 2 pm at the Downtown Library with Betsy Beckerman, Sara Melton Keller and David Stearns. First we will make musical shakers out of cardboard tubes, baby jars, beads, beans, streamers and more! Then the whole family can form a percussion parade and dance to wonderful music!

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl Movie @ The Michigan Theater

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl Movie will be showing at the Michigan Theater on Sunday, April 25 at 1:30. Part of the Benard L. Maas Family Friendly Film Series, and sponsored by The Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan, this event is FREE for kids 12 and under! See it on the big screen with a bucket of popcorn for a Sunday out on the town.

In this Depression-era drama based on the beloved American Girls book series, Kitt tries to solve a home robbery. The all-star cast also includes Abigail Breslin as Kitt, as well as Chris O'Donnell, Joan Cusack, Stanley Tucci, and Jane Krakowski.

If you choose to instead stay home in your PJs on Sunday, it's also available at AADL on DVD and Blu-ray.

The Hallelujah Flight by Phil Bildner

James Banning is a little know figure in history. He was the first African American to complete a transcontinental flight and the first black aviator to obtain a license from the U.S. Department of Commerce. Read about his amazing adventure in The Hallelujah Flight.

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