Going to the Zoo

There’s nothing like a brisk visit to the Detroit Zoo or the Toledo Zoo in the winter time, but if you want to stay warm and cozy with your little one, just stop at the tot table at the Downtown Library. We have the PLAYMOBIL 123 zoo critters for your playing pleasure. This nifty little set, for the very young, was picked up at Learning Express right here in Ann Arbor.

Decorate Your Thanksgiving Table

Do you need some last minute decorations for your holiday meal?
Come to the Pittsfield Branch on Wednesday, November 27, 2014 at 2:00 p.m.
to make some decorations for your table. We'll be making our versions of
place mats, candles, turkeys and wreaths.

This is for kids Preschool - 5. All supplies will be provided.

Holiday decorations made by children's loving hands are the best!

For other ideas of Thanksgiving activities, look here.

Shapes In Art

The next time you’re at the Downtown Library stop by the art table in the Youth Department and work with shapes! We have a variety of wooden shapes that children will enjoy making into different designs. We have some templates out for you to get ideas from.

If you’re inspired to read some picture books about shapes, check these out. And for more shapes in art books check out: Museum Shapes, I Spy Shapes In Art, and Shapes.

2013 Young People’s Literature NBA Winner Announced

NBA winner medalNBA winner medal

The Thing About Luck has received the 2013 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature.

Twelve-year-old Summer knows that kouun means “good luck” in Japanese, and this year her family has none of it. Just when she thinks nothing else can possibly go wrong, an emergency whisks her parents away to Japan—right before harvest season. Summer and her little brother, Jaz, are left in the care of their grandparents, who come out of retirement in order to harvest wheat and help pay the bills.

The thing about Obaachan and Jiichan is that they are old-fashioned and demanding, and between helping Obaachan cook for the workers, covering for her when her back pain worsens, and worrying about her lonely little brother, Summer just barely has time to notice the attentions of their boss’s cute son. But notice she does, and what begins as a welcome distraction from the hard work soon turns into a mess of its own.

Having thoroughly disappointed her grandmother, Summer figures the bad luck must be finished—but then it gets worse. And when that happens, Summer has to figure out how to change it herself, even if it means further displeasing Obaachan. Because it might be the only way to save her family.

Author Cynthia Kadohata won the 2005 Newbery Medal for the book Kira-Kira, the Jane Addams Peace Award and Pen USA Award winner for Weedflower, Cracker!, Outside Beauty, A Million Shades of Gray, and several critically acclaimed adult novels. She lives with her son and dog in West Covina, California.

Nurturing Baby & You: For Babies to Pre-Walkers

Thursday May 15, 2014: 10:00 am to 10:45 am -- Downtown Library: Youth Story Corner

This event is intended for 3 months. to Pre-Walkers (no older siblings, please)

Gari Stein leads this unique program that focuses on play, movement & touch, featuring rhymes, tunes for everyday routines, massage, sheet rides, waltzing, instruments, folk dance, lullabies, hugs & more.

This event promotes healthy development & strong bonds derived from the research on the body-brain connection. In a warm, gentle, nurturing environment, with time to share resources & support.

Turn cranky to calm & get ready for too much fun. No older siblings please.

Welcome To Mamoko

Welcome to Mamoko! There is trouble in town! Follow each character through this wordless picture book and discover a new tale on each page. The pages are full of colorful, detailed illustrations of critters and characters in a bustling town, similar to the style of Richard Scarry’s beloved Busytown. The first pages of the book give you clues to some of the characters to follow through Mamoko. If you have a little one that likes to hunt for things on pages of books, this one’s for you! With its large cardboard pages, it’s great for even the youngest of hands.

Guided Meditation for Kids

Saturday January 25, 2014: 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for ages 7 - 10

Whether it's stress, anxiety or the occasional moodiness kids can benefit from quieting their mind as much as adults.

Local massage therapist and meditation leader, Amy Tarrant, will lead kids ages 7-10 through a series of guided meditations to encourage calmness and more.

Meditation at a young age plants the seed for a life long tool to deal with stress or hard situations.At the end of the session children will have a chance to process what they experienced through artistic expression. Attendees are welcome to bring a pillow or blanket with them for added comfort. Parents are encouraged to attend.

Take a Picture Book JOURNEY with Aaron Becker

If you love HAROLD And The PURPLE CRAYON and the Imagination... of Crockett Johnson, you will love JOURNEY... in which "a young girl draws a door on her bedroom wall and ..."

In JOURNEY, Becker uses all illustrations, and no text, to tell an enchanting fantastical adventure of sophisticated beauty.
Did you like it? Then try the following links for more artistic adventure:
The Public List called "Thoughtful Picture Books for Kids"
HOW TO by Julie Morstad
ISH by Peter Reynolds
SCRIBBLE by Deborah Freedman
BEACH TAIL by Karen Lynn Williams
You may just need to get out the pens, pencils, markers and crayons after all this inspiration and make your own TALE!

I Can Hear the Sun

Here is your opportunity to give your two cents worth to Wild Swan Theater on their new production of I Can Hear the Sun on Thursday at 7 pm. Children in fourth grade and older are invited to hear short readings and some music from the play and then give feedback. Wild Swan and friends will be delighted to see you there!

Mr. Tiger Goes Wild, by Peter Brown

Mr. Tiger is bored with being proper. He wants to have more fun. So he decides to go wild, which is just what this suit and tie wearing tiger does! He goes a little bit too wild and ends up confusing his fellow proper animal friends. They tell him he should go to to the wilderness where he belongs! And he does go away, but he gets lonely and misses his city and his friends. When he gets back to town he is so surprised and happy by what he sees.

Peter Brown is a Caldecott Honor illustrator and the images in Mr. Tiger Goes Wild were made with India ink, watercolor, gouache, and pencil on paper, then digitally composited and colored. They are simply amazing in this picture book.

The book was recently listed on Publishers Weekly's Best Picture Books of 2013.

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