Someone gave me a print of that old WPA poster years ago, and every autumn I’m tempted to make it the center of a seasonal display (it says September right on it, when else will I use it?) but I don’t know; somehow I don’t find the image quite as inviting as children’s library ought to be. But aesthetics aside, I DO love the sentiment of the slogan. Using computers, tablets, and smartphones are a part of daily life for many of our young patrons, and we want to make sure that reading great books is as well. Whether you’re in a public library catching your breath after the busy summer schedule, or a school library gearing up for a new year, this is a great time to gather some really fun, free, online resources with strong literary connections that we can use for story time components, lesson plan enrichment and/or recommendations to caregivers and educators over the upcoming seasons.
Roald Dahl is a perennial favorite in children’s literature, but with the recent successful stage and film adaptations of Dahl’s charmingly naughty tales, I’ve noticed The Roald Dahl Literary Estate seems to be upping the ante on their website. Now alongside some great printables and activity ideas to help any Dahl Day celebrations you might be planning this September, there are things to read, watch make, and even play for our young patrons. The online Twits game is simple, fun and funny, a sure crowd-pleaser (be forewarned, this free online version includes ads for the $1.99 downloadable app).
There’s a lot to love about The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation website from the online read-alouds, video, craft ideas and lesson plans, but I’m sure it won’t surprise you that in my library, it once again comes down to the “video game” as the hands-down favorite. Helping Peter sled down the hill without running into any trees and one in a while launching off the ground over a slope has that hypnotic “Temple Runner” appeal that young gamers can’t seem to get enough of and as long as it keeps The Snowy Day circulating all winter long, I’m not complaining.
Just when I’m sure I know every coloring page, video clip and game in Seussville, I find (or let’s be honest, one of my kiddos shows me) something new to love. They don’t just give us The Cat in the Hat and call it a day – there is wide-spread representation of your favorite (and even not-so-favorite) Seussian stories in these interactive activity menus. You cannot beat the combination of those classic illustrations and truly tough tongue-twisters with awesome new interactive games and activities. Be sure you check it out before your Seuss-a-bration this March.
I know it goes without saying, but honestly, everyday is the right day to hang out with Mo Willems’ fantastic cast of characters at Pigeon Presents. Whether they’re helping Pigeon with hot dog toppings, covering up that naked mole rat, or having a dance party with Elephant and Piggie, patrons of all ages jump at the chance to read, listen, color and play with these kooky creatures!
Share some of your favorite literary websites or apps in the comments below, and let’s all Get Back to Books this fall!
Catherine Sorensen, School Librarian