Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

All locations of the ACPL will be closed today and tomorrow (December 31st & January 1st). Please visit the main library on Sunday between 12pm & 5pm for all of your informational needs.

Did you forget to pick up that classic before the library closed on Thursday? Check out Internet Archive's Children's Library. It is quite useful when your child asks about the story of Tom Thumb when the library is closed and you can't remember exactly how it goes.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 -- The Year in Review

Time flies when you're having fun --- and what fun we've had in Children's Services this year! Here are highlights of some of the events held in Children's Services:

In January 2010, a group of book-loving kids and their grown-ups gathered for our Mock Caldecott for Kids program, and voted for their favorite children's picture books. Lousy Rotten Stinkin' Grapes by Margie Palatini was their Mock Award winner.

In February 2010, a group of homeschoolers toured the Rare Book Room and were able to see the special treasures that are housed there, like this papyrus from the 9th-10th century.

In March 2010, hundreds of preschoolers enjoyed the silly antics of Children's Services' puppets and puppeteers, who shared the stories of The Lion and the Mouse and The Fox and the Grapes at the annual Preschool Puppet Show.

In April 2010, storyteller Carol Knarr portrayed popular children's book character Junie B. Jones for hundreds of elementary school children.

In May 2010, a Fox Island naturalist visited to introduce kids to turtles, snakes and other reptiles.

In June 2010, we watched as Painted Lady caterpillars changed into beautiful butterflies, which we then released at the end of the month.

In July 2010, we danced and sang along with children's musician Jim Gill, who entertained us at several performances.

In August 2010, children brought their stuffed animals to the library for a special storytime; stuffed friends stayed all night for a special stuffed-animal sleepover!

In September 2010, letterboxes were hidden in the Children's Department; many families and children have since discovered this unique hobby.

In October 2010, school children and families attended a presentation by storyteller Doyne Carson, who portrayed Abe Lincoln's Friend.

In November 2010, we celebrated the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead with decorations, crafts, food, and music.

In December 2010, we explored C. S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia series of books with games and crafts.

Thanks to all who participated! We're planning many more activities and events for the upcoming year -- and we invite everyone to join us. Now, on to 2011!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2010: Living in the Future

While looking for books for the staff favorites display, we found a GREAT book: 2010: Living in the Future by Geoffrey Hoyle. It was written in 1973 and is full of predictions about the year 2010. It is fun to look through to see what did and didn't become reality.

Now would be a wonderful time to sit down with your family and create a time capsule. Draw pictures, write stories, print up photos and make predictions about your life and the world 35 years from now. Seal it up and put it somewhere safe, then remember to open it in 2046!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2010: A Good Year for Children's Books

Did you see the article about children's books in yesterday's Journal Gazette? If not, you can find it here. It is a nice list of new books. Some of my favorites that appear on the list:

Potty by Leslie Patricelli (Board Book)
It's a Book by Lane Smith (Picture Book)
Ling & Ting: Not Exactly the Same by Grace Lin (Early Reader)
We Are in a Book by Mo Willems (Early Reader)
Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes (Chapter Book)
Kakapo Rescue by Sy Montgomery, photos by Nic Bishop (Non-fiction)
Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Rick Allen (Poetry)

There are plenty more great books on the list, check it out.

Monday, December 27, 2010

More Fun All Week!

This stand up snowperson was made by a child during last week's table top craft event. There will be a new craft every day this week, stop by to create something awesome!

Don't forget, all locations of the ACPL will be closed this Friday, December 31st and Saturday, January 1st. The main library will reopen on Sunday, January 2nd at 12pm.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Winter Break Crafts

Stop by the main library today through Thursday to make a wonderful winter craft.

Today - Glittery Snowflakes
Monday - Colorful Penguins
Tuesday - Handprint Reindeer
Wednesday - Cotton Tipped Snowflakes
Thursday - Delightful Dragons

See you at the library!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Talking To Children About Art

Grown-ups who are teaching or talking with children about art might want to take a look at the Visual Thinking Strategies website. It gives lots of tips on how to help children learn to interpret and enjoy what they see. Look at the website and then make a trip to the Jeffrey R. Krull Gallery downtown at the Main Library! Or go online to view and discuss some Indiana Art.

Clip art licensed from the Clip Art Gallery on

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Shortest Day!

Happy Winter Solstice!

Today is the shortest day of the year, so try to soak up all of the sunlight that you can. The days will grow longer, but will continue to be shorter than the nights until the spring equinox in March, when day and night are exactly 12 hours each.

Read a book about the winter solstice to learn how the tilt of the earth creates the seasons and to discover ways that you can celebrate the shortest day.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Narnia Program Photos

Thanks to all who attended our Narnia program! We had some very knowledgeable contestants in our quiz game, and participants also had the opportunity to decorate their own dragon and make a Reepicheep mask.

Explore Narnia Today!

Families with children ages 6 - 11 are invited to Children's Services in the downtown library to learn about the classic series written by C. S. Lewis...
The Chronicles of Narnia.

We'll have...
  • a trivia game
  • crafts
  • books to check out
  • and door prizes!
It's all happening TODAY, December 18, from 2 - 3:00 p.m.

Friday, December 17, 2010

2011 ACPL Mock Sibert Award

The 2011 ACPL Mock Sibert Award goes to:

Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World's Strangest Parrot
by Sy Montgomery, photographs by Nic Bishop

Three honor books were named:

They Called Themselves the KKK: The Birth of an American Terrorist Group
by Susan Campbell Bartoletti

The Extraordinary Mark Twain (According to Susy)
by Barbara Kerley, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham

Ubiquitous: Celebrating Nature's Survivors
by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Beckie Prange

Congratulations to our mock winners, and thanks to everyone who participated in this year's program!

Thursday, December 16, 2010


Teachers and homeschooling parents...check out ArtSmart! Developed by the Art Museum of Greater Lafayette and the The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, ArtSmart provides a wealth of information on Indiana artists, complete with lesson plans and activities to encourage the study of the art, history and culture of Indiana. Developed originally to support the Indiana history studies of 4th graders, its many ideas can be adapted for use with a variety of grade levels.

You can find a link to ArtSmart, as well as other resources about Indiana and Fort Wayne history, on our Fort Wayne and Indiana History Booklist.

Clip art licensed from the Clip Art Gallery on

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mirror by Jeannie Baker

This is a wonderfully unique book, telling simultaneous stories of two families that live thousands of miles apart -- one in Morocco, North Africa, one in Australia.

The pages open opposite each other, giving an interesting perspective to the differences and similarities between the two cultures.

Beautifully detailed collage illustrations help make this book one-of-a-kind.

Check it out and see it for yourself!
Mirror by Jeannie Baker

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bake Up Some Goodies!

It's that time of year when many families are baking up some tasty treats for winter holiday celebrations. Involving children in the process can be fun -- and helpful in their literacy development! Encourage writing skills by having your children help write out shopping lists...or read aloud the steps of a recipe with your children as you complete them together.

The library has plenty of simple cookbooks written especially for kids; here are just a few. Check some out next time you visit!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mock Newbery Winners!

Two Mock Newbery Elections were held at the Main Library this weekend.

In the Mock Newbery Election for adults, held on Saturday morning, the winning title was:
Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Honor books were also chosen:

They Called Themselves the K.K.K. - The Birth of An American Terrorist Group by Susan Campbell Bartoletti

Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine

Dark Emperor & Other Poems of the Night by Joyce Sidman

One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia


On Sunday, we held our Mock Newbery Election for Kids. Although our group was small, we had a very lively and thoughtful discussion.

The winning title was:
The Night Fairy by Laura Amy Schlitz

Honor books were
A Nest for Celeste by Henry Cole
Mirror, Mirror by Marilyn Singer

Thanks to all who participated this year!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Snowflakes! Snowflakes! Snowflakes!

We've been seeing a few snowflakes, here in Indiana. To learn more about these amazing crystals, check out

The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter's Wonder
by Mark Cassino with Jon Nelson, Ph. D.

You'll find fascinating photos of real snowflakes UP CLOSE, and cool facts, as well.

Do you like to make paper snowflakes?

Make a Flake lets you cut out virtual snowflakes with a virtual scissors. You will even see virtual paper scraps appear as you cut - - but you won't have to clean them up! Check it out!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Mock Elections this Weekend

We have 3 Mock Elections happening this weekend in Children's Services!

Saturday, December 11:
Mock Newbery Election -- 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Mock Sibert Election -- 2:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 12:
Mock Newbery Election -- for Kids -- 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

Don't worry if you haven't had time to read all of the books on the reading lists! You'll have a great time learning about the wonderful variety of new books published for children this year. There's still time to register, if you'd like to attend! Call us at 260-421-1220, or click on the links above to register through the Mock Election blogs.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

ACPL Mock Geisel 2011 Award Winners

The ACPL Mock Geisel 2011 Award goes to:

Ling & Ting: Not Exactly the Same! by Grace Lin

Three honor books were named:
Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa: Spring Babies by Erica Silverman, illustrated by Betsy Lewin
Scat, Cat! by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, illustrated by Paul Meisel
We Are in a Book! by Mo Willems

Congrats to all the winners!

Monday, December 6, 2010

ACPL Mock Coretta Scott King book Awards

Every January, the Coretta Scott King Book Awards, given to an "African American author and illustrator for outstanding inspirational and educational contributions," are announced. Here at the library, a group of people very interested in excellent children's literature spends the year reading currently-published children's books by African American authors and illustrators. Then we announce our own "mock" award selections. The "real" awards will be announced by the American Library Association at 7:45 a.m. PST, Monday, Jan. 10. Here are our favorites:

Author Award: Ninth Ward, by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Honor Books: Zora and Me, by Victoria Bond & T. R. Simon; One Crazy Summer, by Rita Williams-Garcia; and Ruth and the Green Book, by Calvin Alexander Ramsey

Illustrator Award:
Black Jack, The Ballad of Jack Johnson, by Charles R. Smith Jr., illustrated by Shane W. Evans
Honor Books: Back of the Bus, by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Floyd Cooper and Ruth and the Green Book, by Calvin Alexander Ramsey, illustrated by Floyd Cooper

Many Thanks to all of you who participated, virtually and in person. And to all of the authors and illustrators who gave us so many fantastic reading hours this year, our gratitude -- we'll do our best to put your work into the hands and hearts of children.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Poetry Contest Awards Ceremony

This morning at 11:00, family, friends, teachers, and librarians celebrated the winning poets in the 28th annual Library Poetry Contest. Kids and young adults in Kindergarten through Grade 12 participated.

Over 900 kids and teens entered the Happy, Mad, Sad: Poems About Feelings Poetry Contest.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Celebrate the Imagination!

I just picked up Antoinette Portis' Not A Box to use in a presentation that I am preparing. I am glad that I did because I had forgotten how wonderful this book is.

The dedication is enough to stir the imagination (and the memory) of any grownup: "To children everywhere sitting in cardboard boxes". From there it only gets better as the cute little rabbit takes the reader through several amazing transformations of his plain, brown cardboard box.

Share this book and a cardboard box with your favorite child today!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

More Letterboxes!

Letterboxing is a hobby that will exercise your treasure hunting and artistic abilities. This fun and exciting activity can be enjoyed by the whole family. Letterboxes are hidden all over the world and each one contains a unique stamp. Find letterboxes and collect stamps in your personal journal and leave your personal stamp in the letterbox's visitor book.

We have several letterboxes hidden in the Children's Services department, making this a perfect cold weather activity for your family. Most of our boxes contain beautiful hand carved stamps and if you aren't careful you might learn something about how to find books in the library while you solve the clues. Our trail name is ACPL Kids, click here to find the clues. You can also ask at the Ask Here desk in Children's Services for a folder with EVEN MORE clues!