Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Are you a "Wimpy Kid" fan?

If you have read each book at least a bazillian times, try one of these:

Alien Feast by Michael Simmons
Alvin Ho by Lenore Look
Dear Max by Sally Grindley
Diary of Melanie Martin by Carol Weston
Frindle by Andrew Clements
Geronimo Stilton series by none other than Geronimo Stilton, himself
Heads or Tails by Jack Gantos
The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick
Last Invisible Boy by Evan Kuhlman
Middle School is Worse than Meatloaf by Jennifer L. Holm
Mudshark by Gary Paulsen
Please Write in this Book by Mary Amato

Monday, December 21, 2009


That was quite a blizzard that snuck right by us this past weekend! Read all about blizzards--real and imagined--in the following books:

Blizzard: the Storm that Changed America by Jim Murphy
The Blizzard by Betty Ren Wright
A Blizzard Year by Gretel Ehrlich
Coming Through the Blizzard by Eileen Spinelli
Blizzard of the Blue Moon by Mary Pope Osborne

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Women in Santa's Life

We all know that Santa can't possibly pull off all that magic without Mrs. Claus. Some even say his sister is a motivating force as well. Find out more about these two remarkable women by reading the following:

Mrs. Claus Takes a Vacation by Linas Alsenas
Auntie Claus and Auntie Claus and the Key to Christmas by Elise Primavera
Guess Who's Coming to Santa's for Dinner by Tomie dePaola
Santa and the Three Bears by Dominic Catalano

One more thing--have you ever wondered why the man who runs the local creamy stand looks familiar? read Where Does Joe Go? by Tracey Campbell Pearson.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Holiday Tea Party Rescheduled

We're expecting a storm, so the Holiday Tea Party is rescheduled for Wednesday, December 16 at 3:30. Join us then for tea, juice, cupcakes, a story, a simple craft, and face painting by the best face painter in Vermont!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Like a good mystery?

Try the oldies but goodies--Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries. We have several new copies of these old favorites. Find them shelved with the call number jFIC KEE and jFIC DIX respectively.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Bad Case of...

...Stripes! That's a book by David Shannon. It seems that everyone is either sick, has been sick, or is wondering when it will be his/her turn. Get some sympathy with one of these books:
Chicken Soup by Jean Van Leeuwen
Bear Feels Sick by Karma Wilson
What's Claude Doing? by Dick Gackenbach
Don't You Feel Well, Sam? by Amy Hest
Imogene's Antlers by David Small
How do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon? by Jane Yolen
Mr. Putter and Tabby Catch the Cold by Cynthia Rylant

Monday, November 9, 2009

Farm Fresh

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, perhaps this is a good time to help your kids learn where their food comes from. Try one of these fresh picks:

Tuttles's Red Barn: The Story of America's Oldest Family Farm by Richard Michelson
Our Farm: Four Seasons with Five Kids on One Family's Farm by Michael Rosen
Apples and Pumpkins both by Jacqueline Farmer
Ice Cream: The Full Scoop, The Vegetables We Eat, and Corn all by Gail Gibbons
All in Just One Cookie by Susan E. Goodman
Extra Cheese, Please!: Mozzarella's Journey from Cow to Pizza by Cris Peterson
Pick, Pull, Snap!: Where Once a Flower Bloomed by Lola M. Schaefer

Then checkout our assortment of cookbooks or go to Spatulatta: Cooking for Kids Online at http://spatulatta.com for a slew of kid friendly healthy and appetizing recipes.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Looking for Scary Characters?

You'll find wolves, a headless horseman, witches, giants, and a queen determined to cut off your head in these books:

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
Rumpelstiltskin by the Brothers Grimm.
The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
Little Red Riding Hood by the Brothers Grimm
Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf by Glen Rounds
Jack and the Beanstalk by E. Nesbit
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll

Check out all of the scary characters and more in Miss Smith and the Haunted Library by Michael Garland.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


'Tis the season for apple pie! Reading one of these will make your stomach growl:

An Apple Pie for Dinner retold by Susan VanHecke
All for Pie and Pie for All by David Martin
The Apple Pie that Papa Baked by Lauren Thompson


Saturday, October 3, 2009

Presenting the Springfield Fairytown Library

The Library
The Garden

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Even Fairies Love Libraries!

Visit the Springfield Fairytown Library at the very first official Fairy Houses Tour with author Tracy Kane at the Nature Museum at Grafton on Saturday, September 26, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, September 27, 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Tickets* for the tour feature an advance discount and are available from the Museum, Misty Valley Books in Chester, and Village Square Booksellers in Bellows Falls. Information on the tour (as well as on other Museum programs) is available at http://www.nature-museum.org/ or by phoning 802-843-2111. Participants in the tour will have a chance to make their own houses. This event will be loads of fun for the whole family. In the meantime, you can learn all about fairy houses by reading Tracy Kane's book Fairy Houses or by viewing the video "Kristen's Fairy House." Learn how to build your own fairy house and view others at Kane's website http://www.fairyhouses.com/about_author.htm .

*Tickets purchased in advance: Children $4, Adults $10, Seniors $8
Tickets purchased at tour: Children $5, Adults $12, Seniors $10

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month!

In recognition of this special month, the Springfield Town Library is holding a raffle in the Children’s Room. Anyone who gets a new library card and those who already have a library card are eligible to win one of four copies of Biscuit’s Picnic accompanied by a Biscuit look-alike toy.

A library card is a must have back-to-school item as well as a ticket for exploring new adventures and finding information. If you know of a Springfield resident who doesn’t have a card, encourage him/her to get one. Non-resident cards ($40 per family/year) make great gifts for out-of-town family and friends. For more information call 802-885-3108.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Thanks to the Winnie Belle Learned Fund ...

...we now have a large selection of books about and from other cultures. Also included in our purchases are CDs from Putumayo World Music. The books and CDs are on display in the Children's Room for you to view and check out. Here's a sampling of the titles:
Bean Soup/Sopa de Frijoles by Jorge Argueta
All Kinds of Children by Norma Simon
My Father's Shop by Satomi Ichikawa
I Love Saturdays y Domingos by Alma Flor Ada
One Year in Beijing by Xiaohong Wang
Somewhere in the World Right Now by Stacey Schuett
The Road to Mumbai by Ruth Jeyaveeran
Everybody Bonjours! by Leslie Kimmelman

The Winnie Belle Learned Fund was established in 2006 by Dr. Burnett Rawson in honor of Winnie Belle Learned, a Vermonter, educator, and his benefactress. Ms. Learned was born in 1863 in Westford. Despite many personal hardships, she became a teacher and principal. With a relative, she operated the Cherry Hill Farm in Williston until her death in 1941. Her generosity and vision allowed Dr. Rawson to attend the University of Vermont and its medical school.

Dr. Rawson's goal for the Winnie Belle Learned Fund is to help public libraries of Vermont foster literacy, love of learning, critical analysis. and intellectual exploration in their communities, among children of all ages and their families. We are so lucky to be a recipient of Dr. Rawson's generosity. What a marvelous way to honor a teacher!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Visit Owney!

A toy version of Owney of Owney the Mail Pouch Pooch fame by Mona Kerby is visiting the Children's Room! He will listen to his book on Tuesday, August 11 at 10:00 and will serve ice cream at the Discovery Hour program on Wednesday, August 12 at 10:00. Be sure to stop by and see him. He loves to have his picture taken and will pose with you. Be sure to check out Mona Kerby's website and watch the video: www.monakerby.com/owney.htm

Thursday, July 30, 2009


I LOVE museums! I was very fortunate to be able to have some time to visit the Field Museum of Natural History while I was at the American Library Association Conference in Chicago a few weeks ago. The highlight of my visit was meeting both Sue and Lucy. We have lots of books about museums in the Children's collection. Here are a few (including one about Sue):

2095 by Jon Scieszka
Auks, Rocks, and the Odd Dinosaur by Peggy Thomson
A Dinosaur Named Sue by Pat Relf
Dinosaurs, Dragonflies, and Diamonds by Gail Gibbons
Evolving Planet by Erica Kelly
Fancy Nancy at the Museum by Jane O'Connor
Floratorium by Joanne Oppenheim
The Girl in the Castle inside the Museum by Kate Bernheimer
Lost in the Museum by Miriam Cohen
The Museum Book by Jan Mark
Museum Trip by Barbara Lehman
On the Mall in Washington, D.C. by Brent Ashabranner
The Room of Wonders by Sergio Ruzzier
Seen Art? by Jon Scieszka
Where are you Ernest and Celeste? by Gabrielle Vincent
You Can't take a Balloon into the Metropolitan Museum by Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman

Don't forget about our passes to museums: The American Precision Museum, the Nature Museum at Grafton and VINS provide free admission for families and Echo gives a $2.00 discount per person. So, you have no excuses! Take your family to a museum this summer and explore all of the delights it holds.

Monday, July 20, 2009

It's been 40 years!!

The summer of 69 was eventful--Woodstock, the Man on the Moon, and my 16th year. We've heard a lot about Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong. Read about Michael Collins in The Man Who Went to the Far Side of the Moon by Bea Uusma Schyffert. Then read about the support behind the project in Team Moon: How 400,000 People Landed Apollo 11 on the Moon by Catherine Thimmesh. We'll talk about Woodstock in a few weeks.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

What's the BIG Idea?, ALA Chicago, and All that Jazz

Beyond Storytimes: Standards-based Partnerships for Early Learning

For a copy of the handout, go to

For photos, go to

For book lists, activities, and more information go to

For questions and support, email childrensroom@hotmail.com .

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Happy 4th!!

Independence Day is nearly here! Do your children know why July 4 is an important date in our country's history? Here are some informative books you might want to check out:

Celebrate Independence Day by Deborah Heiligman
Give me Liberty! by Russell Freedman
The Signers by Dennis Brindell Fradin

Some fun titles include:
Grandma Drove the Garbage Truck by Katie Clark
The Hatmaker's Sign by Candace Fleming
Henry's 4th of July by Holly Keller
Olivia Forms a Band by Ian Falconer

May you and your family and friends enjoy a happy and safe holiday weekend!

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Sunny Days of Summer

The first day of summer is rapidly approaching, and we are all looking forward to warm, sunny days! During this cold and rainy weather, brighten your outlook with these books about the sun:

Amazing Sun Fun Activities by Michael Daley
Arrow of the Sun by Gerald McDermott
Children of the Midnight Sun by Tricia Brown
Greetings Sun by Phyllis Gershator
Lucia and the Light by Phyllis Root
Sing to the Sun by Asley Bryan
Summer Stolstice by Ellen Jackson
Sun by Steve Tomacek
The Sun by Seymour Simon
Sun Up, Sun Down by Gail Gibbons
To Be Like the Sun by Susan Marie Swanson
What is the Sun? by Reeve Lindbergh

Here's my pick: Like Butter on Pancakes by Jonathan London and illustrated by one of my favorite artists, G. Brian Karas.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Chickens to the Rescue!

Looking for a fun picture book? Chickens to the rescue! (Actually, that's the title of a book by John Himmelman.) Books about and/or starring chickens are very amusing. For example, Tillie Lays an Egg by Terry Golson (that's Tillie and Terry in the picture) provides lots of laughs and hours of entertainment. You can visit Tillie and her "girlfriends" at the hencam at www.hencam.com/index.php .

Who You Callin' Chicken? by Thea Feldman explores the crazy variety of chicken breeds. Truly amazing!

Here are some other titles you'll want to check out:
Big Chickens by Leslie Helakoski
Chicken and Cat Clean Up by Sara Varon
The Chicken-Chasing Queen of Lamar County by Janice N. Harrington
The Chicken of the Family by Mary Amato
The Cow that Laid an Egg by Andy Cutbill
Hen Hears Gossip by Megan McDonald
Hungry Hen by Richard Waring
Minerva Louise and the Red Truck by Janet Morgan Stoeke
Queenie, one of the Family by Bob Graham
Rosie's Walk by Pat Hutchins
Souperchicken by Mary Jane Auch
Zinnia and Dot by Lisa Campbell Ernst

Don't forget about the DVD Chicken Run--pure egg-stasy!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

War and Peace

Memorial Day is fast approaching. It's a bittersweet holiday for me. I look forward to the unofficial start of summer the holiday provides, but I'm always so moved by the thoughts of the men and women who have served our country, especially those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. The holiday provides an opportunity to talk with children about war, peace, and courage, and the library has some books that might help you start a dialogue with your child.

In Flanders Fields: the Story of the Poem by John McCrae by Linda Granfield
Memorial Day by Trudi Strain Trueit
The Librarian of Basra by Jeanette Winter
War Game by Michael Foreman
Patrol by Walter Dean Myers
I Am I by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick
The War by Anais Vaugelade
The Big Book for Peace (various authors)
A Little Peace by Barbara Kerley
Can You Say Peace? by Karen Katz
Wangari's Trees of Peace by Jeanette Winter
Why War is Never a Good Idea by Alice Walker
Manneken Pis : a Simple Story of a Boy who Peed on a War by Vladimir Radunsky

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Butterflies in the Library!

The butterfly hatchery in the Children's Room is now housing 5 Painted Lady butterfly pupae. We're hoping for lively butterflies in a week or so. In the meantime, keep track of their development by visiting us often and checking out a book about butterflies. Here are some suggestions:

Bob and Otto by Robert Bruel
Becoming Butterflies by Anne Rockwell
Butterflies in the Garden by Carol Lerner.
Butterfly & Moth by Paul Whalley
The Butterfly by Anna Milbourne
Caterpillar, Caterpillar by Vivian French
Crinkleroot's Guide to Knowing Butterflies & Moths by Jim Arnosky
From Caterpillar to Butterfly by Deborah Heiligman
From Egg to Butterfly by Shannon Zemlicka.
Nic Bishop Butterflies and Moths by Nic Bishop
Velma Gratch & the Way Cool Butterfly by Alan Madison
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
Waiting for Wings by Lois Ehlert.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

And the Winner is (Part 2)...

...Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney! Over 5,400 Vermont kids voted for their favorite Dorothy Canfield Fisher book. That translates into a minimum of 27,000 DCF books read this year--WOW!! Congratulations to Kinney and, the real winners, all of the DCF readers! Check out the DCF selections for 2009-2010. The selections are fabulous.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Celebrate Earth Day!

Check out a book about the earth. Here's one of my favorites:
On Earth by G. Brian Karas

And here are some others:
Earth Our Planet in Space by Seymour Simon
The Down-to-Earth Guide to Global Warming by Laurie David and Cambria Gordon
Global Warming : the Threat of Earth's Changing Climate by Laurence Pringle.
You're Aboard Spaceship Earth by Patricia Lauber
True Green Kids : 100 Things You Can Do to Save the Planet by Kim McKay and Jenny Bonnin
Why are the Ice Caps Melting? : the Dangers of Global Warming by Anne Rockwell

Happy Earth Day!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

And the winner is (Part 1) ...

... Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend by Mélanie Watt! Watch a book trailer of this Red Clover winner at:

The voting results will be posted very soon at:

The new Red Clover nominees for 2009-2010 are:
A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever by Marla Frazee
Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek by Deborah Hopkinson
Finding Home by Sandra Markle
How to Heal a Broken Wing by Bob Graham
Owney the Mail Pouch Pooch by Mary Kerby
Pale Male: Citizen Hawk of New York City by Janet Schulman
Sandy's Circus: A Story About Alexander Calder by Tanya Lee Stone
The Chicken of the Family by Mary Amato
Wangari's Trees of Peace by Jeannette Winter

It's a great list!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Roses are Red ...

...Violets are blue
April's the month
For a poem or two.

(Talk about bad poetry!!) In other words, April is National Poetry Month. Go to the website of the Academy of American Poets at www.poets.org/ and sign up to have a poem emailed to you every day. You can also find free poems to download and instructions on how to get a free poster. Look up poems, be introduced to new poets, and enter a contest.

If a book of poetry is more your style, have we got a collection for you! Just look up the call number j811, and you will find a treasure trove of beautiful words and clever phrases. Here are a few samples:

Joyful Noise : Poems for Two Voices Paul Fleischman
Toasting Marshmallows by Kristine O'Connell George
Timothy Tunny Swallowed a Bunny by Bill Grossman
The Spider and the Fly with illustrations by Tony DiTerlizzi.
A Poke in the I selected by Paul Janeczko
The Frogs Wore Red Suspenders by Jack Prelutsky
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
Song of the Water Boatman by Joyce Sidman

Monday, March 30, 2009

April Fools' Day

Do you look forward to April Fools' Day? Or do you fake a fever and call in sick? I have NEVER been a fan of practical jokes, but I do enjoy a good riddle. Here are some books that we have to offer:

About the dreaded day:
Arthur's April Fool by Marc Brown
April Fool! by Karen Gray Ruelle
The School Skeleton by Ron Roy

Jokes and Riddles:

Beastly Riddles : Fishy, Flighty, and Buggy, too by Joseph Low
Count Draculations! : Monster Riddles compiled by Charles Keller
Fiddle with a Riddle : Write Your Own Riddles by Joanne E. Bernstein
High on a Hill : a Book of Chinese Riddles selected and illustrated by Ed Young.
Jokelopedia compiled by Ilana Weitzman
Keep 'em Laughing : Jokes to Amuse and Annoy Your Friends by Louis Phillips
Kindle Me a Riddle : a Pioneer Story by Roberta Karim
Lightning Inside You : and Other Native American Riddles by edited by John Bierhorst
The Moon & Riddles Diner and the Sunnyside Cafe byNancy Willard
My First Riddles / pictures by Judith Hoffman Corwin
Remember Betsy Floss : and Other Colonial American Riddles by David A. Adler
Riddle Road : Puzzles in Poems and Pictures by Elizabeth Spires
Too Hot to Hoot : Funny Palindrome Riddles by Marvin Terban
Unriddling : All Sorts of Riddles to Puzzle Your Guessery collected from American folklore by Alvin Schwartz

Need more? Just search the Public Access Catalog using "riddles," "jokes," or "Wit and Humor."

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Birthday Cake!

That's right, the Very Hungry Caterpillar will be adding birthday cake to his menu this week as he celebrates the 40th anniversary of his "birth" (i.e. publication of the book written and illustrated by Eric Carle) on March 20. Visit the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art's website for a list of festivities for both the Caterpillar and Carle's own 80th birthday on June 25:

Download an activity kit and poster at:

Check out one of our many books written and/or illustrated by the master of tissue paper collage. Here's just a sampling:

The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Do You Want to be My Friend?
Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too?
Draw Me a Star
From Head to Toe
Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? (written by Bill Martin, Jr.)
The Hole in the Dike (retold by Norma Green)
The Lamb and the Butterfly (written by Arnold Sundgaard)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Erin go braugh!

That's "Ireland Forever!" St. Patrick's Day is fast approaching and here are some titles that will put some green in your day.

A Fine St. Patrick's Day by Susan Wojciechowski
Finn MacCoul and his Fearless Wife retold by Robert Byrd.
Fiona's Luck by Teresa Bateman
Harp O' Gold by Teresa Bateman
The Hidden Folk by Lise Lunge-Larsen
Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato retold by Tomie dePaola.
Leprechaun Gold by Teresa Bateman
Mrs. McCool and the Giant Cuhullin by Jessica Souhami.
Paddy's Pot of Gold by Dick King-Smith
St. Patrick's Day by Gail Gibbons
That's What Leprechauns Do by Eve Bunting

Tim O'Toole and the Wee Folk by Gerald McDermott.

Mora na maidine dhuit! (Top of the morning to you!)

Saturday, February 28, 2009


Are you a fan of Erin Hunters Warrior series? Catch all of the latest information about the clans at the author's website:

After a really cool introduction to the site, you can explore information about the books, meet the author, and play some games. You can even sign up for an e-newsletter that will give you advance notice when new additions to the various series become available. I found out from reading a newsletter that there will be a new series called Omen of the Stars. The cats will be introduced to a new foe: beavers! The first installment, The Fourth Apprentice, will be available next November. It's on my list to order!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Little Boys LOVE Trains!

Big ones do, too. I recently spent a weekend visiting relatives in Connecticut. My father-in-law (a BIG train aficionado) took us to the Essex Steam Train and the Connecticut River Museum. A huge model train display was set up at the museum--a big draw. Also available for viewing was the very first submarine used in warfare. Included was a replica for kids to climb into. Very fun! Bald eagles flying outside of the museum provided an extra bonus.

Near the museum is the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat. For an admission fee, families can ride the train or take a cruise on the riverboat. Special events like "The North Pole Express," "Caboose Weekend," and "Day Out with Thomas" are held. These are especially popular with kids.

Both of these attractions are in Essex, Connecticut, a three hour trip from Springfield. But, if you're looking for an exciting adventure for your little train lover and can afford the admission, it's well worth the trip.

For more information, visit these websites:

Or just pick up some of these books at the library:

All Aboard! : Passenger Trains Around the World by Karl Zimmermann
Seymour Simon's Book of Trains by Seymour Simon

For fun:
All Aboard! by Mary Lyn Ray
All Aboard! by James Stevenson.
And the Train Goes by William Bee
Chugga-chugga Choo-Choo by Kevin Lewis
Dinosaur Train by John Steven Gurney
Jingle the Brass by Patricia Newman
The Owl Who Became the Moon by Jonathan London
Thomas the Tank Engine Story Collection by W. Awdry
Train Song by Diane Siebert
Trains by Gail Gibbons.
Tupelo Rides the Rails by Melissa Sweet

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Book in Hand

We are very fortunate to receive a $500 grant from the Winnie Belle Learned Fund that will be used to buy books for our Book in Hand Story Time. This approach was developed by the librarians of the Erica Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts. The program utilizes multiple copies of a picture book as a means to engage children in the reading process. In a traditional story time, the child listens and views a book read (usually) by an adult in a group setting. With Book in Hand, each child in the group has his/her own copy of the book in board book format. Each child can then follow along and explore the book as s/he desires, becoming physically and intellectually engaged. They learn and practice how to keep pace with reading as a group, use descriptive and expressive language, make observations and connections, and manipulate pages. Throughout the session, they can choose to lead the group or follow the lead of other children at will.

We will conduct a three week session of Book in Hand Story Time for toddlers and preschoolers on Wednesdays at 10:30-11:00 from March 11 through 25. We hope you will be able to attend with your child.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Birthday to ...

...Abe and Charles! Two hundred years ago today, two babies were born who would each make a profound mark on our history.

Here are a few of our many titles on Lincoln:

Abe Lincoln Grows Up by Carl Sandburg
Abe Lincoln Loved Animals by Ellen Jackson
Abraham Lincoln by Amy L. Cohn and Suzy Schmidt
Lincoln : a Photobiography Russell Freedman
Mr. Lincoln's Gift : a Civil War Story by Whitney Stewart
The President is Shot! : the assassination of Abraham Lincoln by Harold Holzer

My personal favorite (and--dare I say it--a member of the soon to be published 2009-20010 Red Clover List):
Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek by Deborah Hopkinson

And don't overlook:
Good Brother, Bad Brother : the Story of Edwin Booth and John Wilkes Booth by James Cross Giblin.

I recommend the following brilliant presentation for those interested in learning more about Charles Darwin:
The Tree of Life : a Book Depicting the Life of Charles Darwin, Naturalist, Geologist & Thinker by Peter Sís.

If you are more focused on the upcoming holiday, Valentine's Day, check out the our young adult blog at http://yal.springfieldtownlibrary.org/. It contains a link to everything you ever wanted to know about Valentines and chocolate. It's well worth a visit!

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Mt. Redoubt is getting ready to erupt! This volcano is one of thousands that make up the Ring of Fire. It's located about 100 miles southwest of Anchorage, Alaska. Residents are readying themselves by purchasing masks and goggles to protect them from the ash that will eventually find its way to surrounding areas. As someone who spent many years studying and teaching geology, I find this all very exciting. Many kids who visit the library are intrigued with volcanoes as well. Cultivate your child's curiosity about these special mountains by visiting the websites or checking out the books listed below.
These websites have the latest updates on Mt. Redoubt's rumblings:

What's the Ring of Fire? Find a map here:

The following titles provide information about volcanoes in general as well as specific places.
Eruption! : the Story of Volcanoes by Anita Ganeri.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park by Sharlene and Ted Nelson
Hill of Fire by Joan Sandin
Volcano by Anne Rooney
Volcano : the Eruption and Healing of Mount St. Helens by Patricia Lauber

Watch the DVD Volcanoes for in depth information and the excitement of an eruption.

For some fun and adventure, read The Volcano Disaster by Peg Kehret.

Find out more about Alaska with these books:
Alaska by Tamra B. Orr
A Child's Alaska by Claire Rudolf Murphy

Monday, January 26, 2009

Picturing America

The next time you enter the library, take a look at the balcony and then walk up the stairs to the YA Loft. You will have a view of the the history of America as seen through its art. This is the mission of the Picturing America initiative, a program that seeks to introduce Americans to their artistic heritage and inspire them to become more informed citizens. We are proud to be one of the 76,000 libraries nationwide to have received twenty double sided posters of carefully selected masterpieces from the National Endowment for the Humanities. They will be on display through May and will eventually be available for borrowing. Accompanying the poster collection is a book of information and lesson plans.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Circus Has Come to Town!

Those of you who have visited the Children's Room recently have noticed the fabulous artwork that adorns the walls--a Circus Mural painted by Springfield artist Stuart Eldredge in the mid-50s. This mural was originally commissioned for and displayed in the Children's Playroom of the Pediatric Ward of the then newly renovated Springfield Hospital and officially dedicated November 3, 1957. It was displayed for many years but, at some point, was taken down and stored. Two years ago, the Friends of the Springfield Town Library were approached by members of Eldredge's family. They wanted the children of Springfield to enjoy it, and, what better place for viewing than at the library? There was just one problem--it needed restoration. It was an expensive endeavor, but the Friends provided funding and artists of the Eldredge family donated much of their time. The finished product was unveiled at our Holiday Open House last December. How fortunate we are to be able to house this beautiful and historic piece of artwork for everyone to enjoy!

After you see it, you might be in the mood for some circus stories to share with your kids. Here are some suggestions:

The World's Greatest Elephant by Ralph Helfer
Circus Album by Linda Granfield
Sandy's Circus by Tanya Lee Stone
Emeline at the Circus by Marjorie Priceman
Ernest and Celestine at the Circus by Gabrielle Vincent
Ginger Jumps by Lisa Campbell Ernst
Olivia Saves the Circus by Ian Falconer
Peter Spier's Circus by Peter Spier
The Piggest Show on Earth by Arlene Dubanevich (a Springfielder)
Sidewalk Circus by Paul Fleischman

So stop by soon, and see Springfield's Greatest Show on Earth!