Christmas with Dylan Thomas

Spend a holiday evening with Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales on dvd, audiobook, or book. Thomas' lilting Welsh voice lends a magical air to the audio recording. Listening to the story gives me the feeling of an old fashioned Christmas complete with peppermints and caramels, candle light, and thick blankets of snow.

Dylan Thomas is most well known for his villanelle "Do Not Go Gentle into that Good Night", and his poems and stories about life in Wales during the first half of the 20th century, including Under Milkwood, which was originally written as a radio play exploring the private thoughts of people in a small Welsh town. In 2008 a story about Dylan Thomas' adult life with his wife and childhood sweetheart opened the Edinburgh Film Festival. The Edge of Love stars Keira Knightley, Sienna Miller, and Cillian Murphy and wonderfully captures the WWII atmosphere, however, a warning to those who are interested in watching it: it's not a cheerful movie for this joyful time of year.

Brainfuse Break


Brainfuse will not be available from Wednesday December 23 after 7:00 EST through 12/26/09. Live on line tutoring resumes 12/ 28 & 29 from 2:00 pm-11:00 pm & closes early on 12/31/09 at 7:00 pm. Tutors are available again on January 3, 2010. Our research databases will be here 24/7, or take a look at opposing viewpoints in preparation for that long standing argument with your parents.

Silly Songs and Stories

I am really looking forward to silly singing and storytelling with my talented banjo buddy, Noah Haiduc-Dale, on December 29 at 10 am at the Downtown Library. We have a ridiculous story/song involving lots of snorts, clucks and quacks, to get the whole family in on the act. Noah has been entertaining us this past session at storytime and we love to march and dance to Jim Gill songs!

Fairy Land

Now that the fairies are well settled in Ann Arbor, they may be looking for little vacation homes. Come on over and make a tiny house or garden for fairies, with spools for tables and marbles for chairs, and perhaps they will visit you soon! On December 22 at 10 am, kids in Kindergarten and up are invited to create a magical fairy home at Pittsfield Branch!

Bob Books are here!

There are several new Bob Books now sitting in the readers section in the Youth Departments at AADL locations. What are Bob Books? They are fabulous! Each little box comes with eight small fit-in-your-hands readers for emergent readers to practice reading or to focus on particular skills. Some skills included are long vowels, compound words, and the alphabet. There are also some sets of books that are simply books for beginning readers. (You can visit their website for a better look.) Give Bob a chance, you’ll like him. And if you’re looking for more leveled readers be sure to have a peek at the complete readers section. If you’re not sure where they are, ask us!

Hats and Noisemakers for New Year's Eve

Here's to a loud and festive New Year's Eve! We're having a craft program at the Pittsfield Branch on Tuesday, December 29 from 2 - 3 p.m. We will make crazy hats: cone hats, newspaper hats, and crowns. Choose the hat you want to make and then decorate it. We'll also be making noisemakers from plastic cups and beads. All supplies will be provided. This is for children preschool through 5th grade.

Pittsfield Branch | Tuesday, December 29 | 2 - 3 p.m

Winter Solstice Craft Program

December 21st is the shortest day of the year and the first day of winter vacation for Ann Arbor's schoolchildren. It's also a good day to finish up making your holiday decorations.

Come to the Traverwood Branch on Monday, December 21st from 2 - 3 p.m. We will be making some festive winter crafts to brighten up this otherwise gray and gloomy day.
For ages preschool through 5th grade. All supplies will be provided.

Blu-ray for kids!

We are pleased to announce that we now have Blu-Ray discs for children. This Youth Blu-Ray collection is shelved at the beginning of the DVD section in the Youth DVD area at all locations. For those of you who prefer to browse online, you may find the Youth Blu-Ray titles here.

Blu-ray discs, a high-definition video format, are designed to play on specialized Blu-ray players, and will not function in a standard DVD player; however, DVDs will play in a Blu-ray player. The Playstation 3 video game console also plays Blu-ray discs.

Youth Music Notes -- Lullabies

Sleeping ChildSleeping Child

Lullbies are truly a universal form of music, existing all over the world in every language. My own mother was fond of the Gartan Mother's Lullaby, and I still hum it to myself in the evening, even though I have forgotten all the words. For those of you who would like to expand your own lullaby repertoire, the Youth Department has plenty of CD's for every taste.

Priscilla Herdman's Star Dreamer provides both "nightsongs" and lullabies, with soothing guitar accompaniments. Interestingly, many of her songs involve bears.

Lullabies of Latin America by Maria Del Rey provides traditional lullabies from all over the Spanish-speaking world. In the second half of the CD, the songs are all sung again, in English. A bilingual bonus!

Prolific children's musician Susie Tallman brings us another CD for fans of multicultural music. Lullabies For Sleepy Eyes includes Irish, French, German and American lullabies -- as well as the enigmatic Aussie favorite "Waltzing Matilda".


Ok. Winter has finally arrived, but that’s no reason to curl up on the couch all day. It’s time for yoga and play. Victoria Forman-Duranona is involved in the local Yoga scene and has offered fun yoga programs for children at our library over the years. We are happy that Victoria is returning on December 19th at 10:00 am at the Pittsfield Branch to play, tell stories and help us channel all that pre-holiday energy!

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