Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Homework Help

It’s that time of year.  Kids are back in school and will soon be coming into the library for homework and research, not just for pleasure reading.  I admit…I have always  enjoyed helping children find the answers they need to a homework question.  I find it strangely satisfying.  And this year, as the pandemic continues, students are going to need our support more than ever.  How can we help? 

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Spending a Virtual Summer Traveling the World

For the second summer in a row, understandably, we have not offered our yearly summer camps.  While they can be a lot of work, I missed the camaraderie that occurs when I work with the same kids over many days in a row.  So, this year, I planned a weekly virtual program based on geography.  The nine-week program, meeting an hour each Monday, used the first nine books in the Flat Stanley Worldwide Adventures early chapter series as a starting point to talk about travel.  As a child who grew up obsessed with maps, I have long lamented geography not having its due in American schools and the lack of geopolitical knowledge amongst Americans in a global world. 

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Can Babies Benefit from Virtual Storytime?

The virtual storytimes I have been holding for toddlers and preschoolers have been more successful than I had hoped…or feared.  Children have been much more engaged and responsive via Zoom than I believed they would.  They dance along to the songs.  They join in on fingerplays.  And they have a lot to say at the end of storytime when we say “hello” to each participant.  However, the question remained…what to do with babies?  I’ve been experimenting and would like to share some thoughts.

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Pandemic Picture Book Picks

Prince Harry has written the foreword to Hospital on the Hill, an upcoming book by author Chris Connaughton.  The book reportedly tells the story of a young person whose parent worked—and died—on the frontlines of a hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The royal’s introduction discusses the loss of his mother, Princess Diana, when he was 12 years old. 

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Zooming into STEAM Programming

I love book clubs. I personally belong to four (three of which focus on children’s and teen titles).  I run one for tweens at my library.  The adjustment of doing this all online was very simple. I love storytimes.  After figuring out how best to frame staff on the Zoom screen and getting storytime permissions, storytimes adjusted virtually very easily. I love STEAM programs. …….. Seriously, though, I was wondering HOW exactly STEAM programs were going to translate to a live virtual program.  I had done, and seen, some pre-taped crafts and such, but I’ve been just itching to actually connect and interact with kids.  I know many, many of my colleagues have been offering deeply impactful STEAM programs online, but last week was my first. I don’t really get nervous programming anymore.  I was nervous for this. I chose a program on Air and Wind that I was supposed…

Blogger Maria Trivisonno

Jolly Holidays All Year Round

After battling the elements to get to the branch (snow, snow, and more snow), I spent several days last week changing my seasonal displays. I am lucky to work (and live) in a truly diverse community that has for a long time featured large Catholic and Jewish populations and now boasts a growing African American community along with immigrant groups from Turkey and southern India.  I’m always excited to feature diverse books, and offering mirrors and windows to a diversifying neighborhood always seems very worthwhile. Nothing makes this clearer than my holiday displays.  I recently dismantled my Lunar New Year, Valentine’s Day, and Presidents’ Day books, plumped up my Black History Display, and looked ahead to upcoming holidays…and what a plethora are approaching!  Not to forget: February 26th: Purim March 14th: Pi Day March 17th: St. Patrick’s Day March 20th: Norwuz March 27th: First day of Passover March 28th: Holi…