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JANUARY 31, 2013
Reading group for kids with aspbergers or high functioning autism

At the Columbine Library

Pets: Tuesday, February 12 at 4 p.m.

Join us for a book club for kids ages 7 to 12 with high functioning autism or sensory integration issues the first Tuesday of every month.  Kids are asked to share a book (fiction or nonfiction) that they've read on the topic of the month.

Each session will also include an activity or game.  Kids are welcome to participate in activities and learn about books other kids have enjoyed even if they don't have a book to share!

Kids must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver. 

Future meeting dates and topics:

Tuesday, March 12 at 4 p.m.- People (biographies)

Tuesday, April 9 at 4 p.m.- Sports

Tuesday, May 14 at 4 p.m.- Adventure & Survival

Tuesday, June 11 at 4 p.m.- Mysteries of the Unknown: Ghosts, UFOs and more




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posted by Sheryl, Columbine Library

Categories: EventsBook discussion groups


JANUARY 30, 2013
Board books: indestuctible, interesting and illustrated with care

Board books are the perfect way to introduce your baby to reading.  They are sturdy enough to withstand rigorous "inspection" by baby's hands and mouth and hold fun stories with bright pictures and words that will show your baby how fun reading can be.

Here's a just a sampling of new additions to our collection. These board books caught our eye and hopefully your little one's too.


National Geographic Look and Learn books

Filled with the eye-catching, clear photographs that the magazine is known for, these books are a great way to introduce your little one to simple concepts like Shapes, Opposites, Matching and Counting.


Karen Katz Lift-the-Flap books

Babies love surprises and these brightly colored, themed books are full of flaps to lift with little surprises underneath.  Your baby will love turning the pages and re-reading these to see what's under each flap!



A stand alone favorite for the year, stylized pictures and unexpected pairings make this book fun for babies and parents to read together! 

We have these and lots more board books at your local Jefferson County Library.  Check out a few at your next visit and have fun reading with your baby!



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posted by Rachel, Standley Lake

Categories: early learning conceptsNew Books


JANUARY 28, 2013
Caldecott, Newbery and Coretta Scott King Award winners announced today!

The biggest day in children's literature is here!  And, the winners are (drum roll please!).....

The Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children was awarded to:

This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen

A little minnow steals a hat and tries to run, or swim, away in this silly, visual story for kids ages 4 and up.  This follow-up to Klassen's I Want My Hat Back that is sure to make everyone laugh again and again. 

Caldecott Honors were awarded to the following books:

Creepy Carrots! illustrated by Peter Brown and written by Aaron Reynolds

Extra Yarn illustrated by Jon Klassen and written by Mac Barnett

Green illustrated and written by Laura Vaccaro Seeger

One Cool Friend illustrated by David Small and written by Toni Buzzeo

Sleep Like a Tiger illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski and written by Mary Logue


The John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children's literature was awarded to:

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

A touching story told by Ivan, an artistic gorilla, who tries to save Ruby, a baby elephant, from their lives as animals on display at a mall.  Poignant and funny, this book is great for kids ages 8 and up. 

Newbery Honors were awarded to the following books:

Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz

Bomb: The Race to Build-- and Steal-- the World's Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin

Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage


The Coretta Scott King Author and Illustrator Book Awards recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults were awarded to:

Illustrator Award

I, Too, Am America illustrated by Bryan Collier with words written by Lanston Hughes

With Illustrator Honors for the following:

H.O.R.S.E.: A Game of Basketball and Imagination illustrated and written by Christopher Myers

Ellen's Broom illustrated by Daniel Minter and written by Kelly Starling Lyons

I Have a Dream: Martin Luther King, Jr. illustrated by Kadir Nelson and with words by Martin Luther King, Jr.

Author Award

Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America written by Andrea Davis Pinkney and illustrated by Brian Pinkney

With Author Honors for the following:

Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson

No Crystal Stair: A Documentary Novel of the Life and Work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem Bookseller by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson


A complete list of the American Library Association 2013 youth media award winners is available in this press release.

Request your copies of these soon to be classics from the library today!


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posted by Kristin, Columbine Library

Category: Awards


JANUARY 24, 2013
Our favorite- this week!


Big Mean Mike by Michelle Knudsen

This book has major cover appeal and a great story to go along with it-- it made me laugh out loud!  It's a little long for preschool storytime, but you can bet I'll read it to the next group of Kindergarten, 1st or 2nd graders that ends up in front of me. 

Mike is the biggest, toughest, meanest dog around and he wants to make sure that every knows it.  He wears the biggest meanest boots, has a spiky collar and drives a tough car.  So, when a little fuzzy bunny appears in his trunk one day he tells the cute little bunny to scram.  But, the next day there are two, then three, then more!  The tough guy car show is coming up and he's being followed around by cute, little fluffy bunnies.  How's a tough guy supposed to look tough at the car show with bunnies?!  

Pair it with Superdog: the Heart of a Hero by Caralyn Buehner for a dog themed read aloud that everyone will enjoy.   Big Mean Mike would be great read one-on-one with younger kids too!


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posted by Scout the dog, Columbine Library

Categories: Read AloudsStaff favoritesPicture books


JANUARY 23, 2013
Get Ready for World Book Night on April 23, 2013

Calling ALL parents! Was your resolution for 2013 to spread the love of reading throughout your community? If you answered YES, then we can help, World Book Night is looking for volunteers just like you.

World Book Night is a celebration of literacy by publishers, booksellers, libraries and individuals who love reading. On World Book Night, volunteer book givers distribute 20 copies of a special edition not-for-resale book they've read and loved to strangers in their communities - people at rec centers, bus stops and restaurants - who may never have owned a book before.

In 2012, More than 80,000 volunteers in the United States, the UK, Ireland and Germany distributed more than 2.5 million books. So, mark your calendars for Shakespeare's birthday, April 23rd, and help make a difference in your community this year.


To learn more about World Book Night and apply to be a book giver, visit the World Book Night U.S. website.

Don't delay - the deadline for applications is Friday, January 25th. Sign up today so you and your family can help us share the joy of reading!

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posted by Barbara, Evergreen Library

Categories: EventsCommunity


JANUARY 22, 2013
Favorite picture books of 2012

There were many new books published in 2012, but a few really caught my attention. Kids 4-8 years would enjoy these fun stories as read alouds in groups or one-on-one!

Asiago by Adam McHeffey 

This Monster Needs a Haircut by Bethany Barton

Chopsticks (not exactly a sequel to Spoon, more like a change in place setting) by Amy Krouse Rosenthal


Make a Wish Bear by Greg Foley

Duck Sock Hop by Jane Kohuth

 It's always fun to find a few new favorites while you're in the library. Have you discovered any new favorites in 2012? Please share them with us!

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posted by Donna, Columbine Library

Categories: Read Alouds


JANUARY 20, 2013
Free iPad apps for kids!

Your kids can learn reading, counting, and more-- and get ahead in digital literacy to boot!  Here are two suggestions for free iPad apps you might like to try. 

Miss Spider's Tea Party

From iTunes: "Watch, read, listen, and play as this beloved, classic picture book magically comes to life.  With multi-touch animation, painting, puzzles, and games, Miss Spider's Tea Party for iPad reinvents the reading experience for the whole family."  Free for a limited time. 

Vocabulicious Kinder Free

From iTunes: "Children will enjoy seeing fun, real-world pictures and feel the joy of getting the right answer.  Repetitive playing is key to improving your child's vocabulary, and it's all possible with Vocabulicious!"


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posted by Katie, Arvada Library

Categories: early learning conceptsLiteracy


JANUARY 19, 2013
Check out author Karen Cushman

Do you love Castles and Kings? Peasants and Knights? All things medieval like I do?

Then Karen Cushman is the author for you! I have read all of her books and most are set in Medieval or Elizabethan England.

Her latest book is something different. It is still set in England's Middle-Ages but for the first time Cushman's main character is a boy, twelve-year-old Will Sparrow.

Will Sparrow, Liar and thief, is running away from the father who sold him for beer, the innkeeper who threatened to sell him as a chimney sweep- from his whole, sad, sorry life. Barefoot and penniless, Will is determined to avoid capture, secure boots, and find something to eat. The lively goings-on behind the scenes of Elizabethan market fairs provide a colorful, earthy backdrop from this wise and funny story of a runaway who finally and unexpectedly stops running.

To find out what Karen Cushman has to say about writing historical fiction check out her website. There is also an interview with the author and information about all her books

Below is a list of Karen Cushman books set in medieval times that we have at the library:

Alchemy and Meggy Swann

Matilda Bone 

The Midwife's Apprentice

Catherine Called Birdy

Some of these books are available to download to your computer or reader or to check-out and listen to on disc or playaway. Be sure to ask at your favorite library.

Want to learn more about the Middle Ages? Check-out these nonfiction titles!

The Middle Ages: An Interactive History Adventure by Allison Lassieur

DK Eyewitness' Medieval Life by Andrew Langley

Look Inside a Castle by Jenny Moss

I am always on the lookout for a new historical read. If you have a favorite I'd love to hear about it!

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posted by Connie, Lakewood Library

Categories: Historical fictionAuthor spotlight


JANUARY 17, 2013
Do you love animals?

If so, you should check out these true animal stories with amazing photographs.

A Friend For Einstein: The Smallest Stallion by Charlie Cantrell and Rachel Wagner

This is the story of a mini miniature horse named Einstein who weighed no more than a cat and stood about as tall as a cereal box when he was born. Too little to play with the rest of the herd, Einstein is lonely until he meets a dog named Lilly and the two become great friends.

Friends: True Stories of Extraordinary Animal Friendships by Catherine Thimmesh

Check out this book to see some amazing and unusual animal friends. Would you ever think that a dog and leopard would be pals? How about a frog and a mouse or a pig and a camel? Each photograph has a story that goes along with it, explaining how the unlikely animal pairs became buddies.

Kate and Pippin: An Unlikely Love Story  by Martin Springett

This is the story of how a Great Dane named Kate becomes a mother to a little lost fawn called Pippin. Pippin is found in the woods abandoned by her mother. After three days of being unclaimed by her real mother, Kate’s owner takes her in and Kate begins to care for her like her own puppy.

Nubs: The True Story of a Mutt, a Marine, and a Miracle by Brian Dennis, Kirby Larson, and Mary Nethery

Nubs was a wild dog in Iraq before he befriended a Marine named Brian Dennis. Brian is not allowed to keep Nubs so he raises money to send him to the U.S. to live a safer life in Brian’s home in San Diego. Read this story to find out what happens!

Owen and Mzee: The True Story of a Remarkable Friendship told by Isabella Hatkoff, Craig Hatkoff, and Paula Kahumbu

In this true tale, a baby hippo named Owen becomes separated from his mother in a flood. He is brought into shore and taken to an animal sanctuary called Haller Park and is placed in a habitat with a tortoise names Mzee, who isn’t too happy about it at first. Soon, however, the two become very close friends and can even be seen snuggling up against one another at night.

Tarra and Bella: The Elephant and Dog Who Became Best Friends by Carol Buckley

This is the story of a retired circus elephant named Tarra and her life in an elephant sanctuary in Tennessee. Here she prefers to stay away from the other elephants and generally likes to be alone. A stray dog named Bella comes to the sanctuary and the two are soon inseparable. They eat together and sleep together and when Bella suffers a spinal injury her elephant companion watches over her until she is nursed back to health.

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posted by Rachel, Golden Library


JANUARY 14, 2013
One Book 4 Colorado: What's YOUR favorite?

Lieutenant Governor Joe Garcia has announced the launch of voting for the One Book 4 Colorado.  One Book 4 Colorado is a collaboration between the Lt. Governor's office, Reach Out and Read Colorado and the State Library aiming to provide a free book to every 4 year-old in the state! 

The books will be passed out at participating Reach Out and Read clinics and your own local public library later this spring.  But, in the meantime, YOU can help decide which book will be chosen! 

The candidates are.....

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr.


Duck on a Bike by David Shannon



Knuffle Bunny: a Cautionary Tale by Mo Willems

Vote for your favorite now through January 31st.

Or, watch these videos of Colorado celebrities including Governor Hickenlooper, Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin and Denver Nuggets Kenneth Faried reading each book to help you decide.  

Which one is your favorite?  Tell us here!




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posted by Kristin, Columbine Library

Categories: ActivitiesEventsOne Book 4 Colorado


JANUARY 11, 2013
Brand new year!

It's a brand new year!  An important math concept is learning about time. One fun way to do this is to look at the next year ahead of us by concentrating on the twelve months that make up a year. Think about the order of the months and how they relate to the seasons of the year. Think about the holidays and other special days that come in each month.

Listed below are some of the fun books to enjoy and help you learn about time and the calendar!

A Kitten's Year by Nancy Raines Day 


When Lucy Goes Out Walking: a Puppy's First Year by Ashley Wolff


Snowmen All Year by Caralyn Buehner 


Calendar by Myra Cohn Livingston


The Turning of the Year by Bill Martin Jr.

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posted by Diane, Standley Lake Library

Categories: early learning concepts


JANUARY 9, 2013
Habia una vez bilingual storytimes at Belmar Library

Do your children speak Spanish? Or, are you looking for a bilingual storytime for your child to learn some Spanish?

Belmar Library has a bilingual storytime once per month on the second Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m.

This storytime is presented in a dual language format with some activities in Spanish and some in English.

The whole family is welcome, but books are chosen especialy for 2-6 year olds.

Cuenta cuentos interactive bilingüe para toda la familia -- especialmente para niños de 2-6 años.

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posted by Rhoda, Belmar Library

Categories: EventsStory Times


JANUARY 8, 2013
Do you like snakes?

Snakes are fascinating animals- there's lots to learn about them, and you can even keep some of them as pets! 

One book about snakes that's fun to read is 100 Things You Should Know about Snakes.

To check out other great books about snakes at the library just look for 597.96 in the Children's nonfiction section.

If you have ever wanted to own a pet snake, you might like to read a story about a boy who wants to get a snake. In the chapter book Hiss-s-s-s! by Eric A. Kimmel, Omar gets a corn snake for a pet, but his mother is deathly afraid of snakes.  Find out what happens when his new pet snake gets lost in the house.


Do you have a pet snake?  We'd love to hear your snake story.

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posted by Geri, Columbine Library


JANUARY 5, 2013
A world without UNDERPANTS?!

The last time we saw George and Harold in Captain Underpants and the Terrifying Re-Turn of Tippy Tinkletrousers they had squashed dastardly Tippy Tinkletrousers as zombie nerds.  However, due to Tippy's time-traveling tricks, the reader is told that the events of the book had never happened, Captain Underpants was never created, and worst of all, there would be no more Captain Underpants books!!  

Well, have no fear, our heroes find their way out and manage to change history back, so that Captain Underpants exists again in.....

Captain Underpants and the Revolting Revenge of the Radioactive Robo-boxers by Dav Pilkey

Place your hold now and find out how George and Harold change the course of history!

While you're waiting try one of Dav Pilkey's other books, like:


Or, Kat Kong


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posted by Kristin, Columbine Library

Categories: SeriesNew Books


JANUARY 4, 2013
A slice of history

Sometimes it’s difficult to understand why nations make the choices they do, but there is usually a reason behind each choice. Learning about history helps us discern the context of the choices. This is especially true for wars since there are often many factors that lead to conflict. If you are interested in World War II, there is a great, easy-to-read, comprehensive new book at the library that explains the background of, and events during, the war.

Check out Living Through World War II by Andrew Langley


There are also many wonderful fiction (made up) stories, which help us understand what individuals experienced during the war. One of my favorites is Soldier Bear by Bib Dumon Tak 


It is based on a true story (there are marvelous photos in the back of the book) of a bear who is befriended by some Polish soldiers in the Middle East. The bear becomes their company’s mascot and helps them in the fighting! He eventually winds up in Scotland, where he lives a long life.


Elephant Run by Roland Smith takes place in Burma on the brink of the Japanese invasion. Nick’s life on his father’s teak plantation is so different from London, but he adjusts to life there, just in time to experience the horrors and difficulties of war in the jungle. A great adventure and a quick read you’re sure to enjoy!


What would it be like to encounter an enemy soldier in your small American town? Sheltering an escaped German prisoner of war is the beginning of some shattering experiences for Patty, a 12-year-old Jewish girl in Arkansas. Read Summer of my German Soldier by Bette Greene to understand what it would be like.


Boxes for Katje by Candace Fleming, is a picture book that explores a friendship that develops between a young Dutch girl and her new American friend in thanks for the care package sent after World War II.


Or, read another great picture book

The Greatest Skating by Louise Borden, about a ten-year-old Dutch boy's dream of skating in a famous race, which allows him to help two children escape to Belgium during World War II, by ice skating past German soldiers and other enemies.

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posted by Tisha, Evergreen Library

Category: Historical fiction


JANUARY 3, 2013
New Year's celebrations around the world

New Year’s is a time to celebrate in the United States and in other places around the world too! On New Year’s Eve in the U.S., many people stay up until midnight to ring in the first day of the New Year with noisemakers and fireworks. Many watch the Times Square Ball drop down the flagpole in New York at exactly midnight. The ball drop is a tradition that has been around since 1907!

A popular song sung on New Year’s in many English speaking countries is Auld Lang Syne. Read on to see how other countries around the globe celebrate this special holiday.


New Year’s is the biggest celebration in Japan. Here people clean their homes, send postcards to friends and family members, prepare huge dinners, and visit local shrines on New Year's.  On these occasions, Buddhist temples ring their bells 108 times to drive away evil spirits.


Greenlanders celebrate New Year’s twice. At 8pm they shoot off fireworks and eat a big meal because at this time it is midnight in Denmark. They repeat these festivities four hours later when it is actually midnight in Greenland. They observe the holiday twice to honor the two countries’ shared history and relationship.


In Ukraine, New Year’s Eve is like Christmas in the United States. On this night, children receive presents from Grandpa Frost, who leaves them under their trees, just like Santa Claus!

Sri Lanka

New Years' festivities often take place in April in Sri Lanka. At this time people participate in all kinds of activities ranging from pillow fights to cycle races. At the end of the old year all fires are extinguished. These are then relit when the new year begins.


In France it is a tradition to give flowers to family members older than you on New Year’s Day.

To find out more about how holidays are celebrated around the world check out the Culture Grams Kids Edition database. 

What is YOUR New Year's tradition?  Tell us in the comments below. 

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posted by Rachel, Golden Library

Category: Holidays


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