Early Literacy Fair

On Saturday, August 27th, the Novi Library will be hosting an Early Literacy Fair for parents, caregivers, and kids ages birth through 5 years.  Coordinated by Library Science Intern extraordinaire, Emily Brush, the event will focus on the five practices of early literacy, Reading, Singing, Talking, Playing and Writing.  Stations will be set up for adults and children that demonstrate ways to introduce the practices into everyday activities for various developmental stages.

For example, before little ones can hold a crayon or pencil, or begin writing, they will need to develop their fine motor skills.  Babies can begin grasping items at about six month. Tugging on ribbon or string helps develop and strengthen fingers and, of course, toddlers love pulling on things. Once little ones can hold a pencil or crayon they can practice connecting dots on a piece of paper – a great precursor to writing.

Learning doesn’t need to be forced or repetitive.  Come in and learn how you can develop your child’s early literacy skills in fun and easy ways.  Check out Miss Kathryn’s Story Time Corner and Miss Linda’s puppet theater.

See you at the Fair!  I’ll be the one singing.  (I apologize in advance!)

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Playing on the Patio

The Novi Library conducts two playgroup sessions per week during the summer.  This gives children and caregivers a chance to play and socialize in an unstructured, fun environment.

Monday playgroup is held in the Activity Room.  We put out toys to inspire curiosity and learning.  Coloring sheets and crayons are available for those wishing to be a little creative. Thursday playgroup is held in the Story Time Room and weather permitting, on the patio as well.  It is nice to be able to incorporate a sensory aspect to play with bins of sand to dig up sea shells, colored rice to measure and pour, and bubbles to chase and pop.

Play is such an important tool in a child’s literacy development.  Children enhance language skills, small and large motor skills, and develop an increased awareness of their surroundings.  Problem solving skills are also developed through play.

Scholastic has a great article about play and literacy development.

PBS Parents discusses cultivating skills through sensory play.


See you in the Story Time Room.

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Read for the Win

The Novi Library Summer Reading Program began this week.  Books were flying off the shelves.  It is great to see the kids so excited about reading.  Our display features race cars…I know everyone is working hard to get to the finish line and have the opportunity to attend our finale party.


Summer Story Time and Playgroup sessions begin Monday, June 27th.  We can’t wait to see all of our friends again in the Story Time Room.

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Get Set to Dance!

On Monday, June 13th, at 11:00 am, the library will have one of my favorite programs — Dance Party!  Toddlers and preschoolers can come in to the library to listen to some great tunes and move and jump!  This popular program is a great way for little ones to learn socialization skills and burn off some of their abundant energy.

Through Dance, children can learn problem solving,  self expression and gain confidence. Learn more at the Hidden Language of the Soul.

Dance and Social Development in Preschoolers discusses how children learn self control through dance and that learning to dance is similar to learning language.

And over on MusikGarten the many benefits of music and dance are explained.

See you on the dance floor!

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Oh, and some cute babies dancing….

Never Too Old For Picture Books

Normally, I do not write book reviews but I recently added a couple of picture books to the collection that would make great gifts for graduates.  It is, after all, that time of year and many of us wonder what to give.

I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal is a beautiful little book that celebrates milestones, offers encouragement for the future, and reminds us to find joy in everyday moments.  I love the cover that depicts a little boy making a wish while blowing fuzzy dandelion seeds.  This one is great for a parent to give a child.
The next one is The Knowing Book by Rebecca Kai Dotlich.  On the cover is a sweet little rabbit looking up at the stars.  The book reminds us to be brave, trust your instincts, listen, and never forget to look up.  “The stars have always been above you, are above you now, and will always be above you.” A good reminder that as our lives change, some things remain a constant in our lives.

I’m glad that we will never be too old for picture books.

This week’s handouts: BT_May_9_MonkeyTotTime _May_9_Monkey

Calendar of Events

Next week begins Story Time Break.  Story Time will begin again on Monday, June 27, 2016. The Summer Reading Program begins on June 20, 2016.

Creating Connections

Here in Story Time it’s all about nurturing connections, not only between the library and library staff and families, but also between parent and child.  New research discovered the greater the bond between parent and child the healthier the child will be.  Story Time is a great place to nurture bonds free of the many distractions found in the home.

Being present in the moment and interacting with your child during story time is important.  Sharing this time together promotes communication that enhances the bonding process.  On occasion I see a disconnect between parent and child in story time. Parents need to be role models for their children. Paying attention helps children learn to focus and pay attention too.  Sharon McClintock recently shared her insights in the blog Engaging Adults in Storytime.  “We know how much children benefit when their parents are engaged in storytime: when parents listen to the stories and songs they have something to talk to their children about when the event is over, and those conversations lead to an enriched vocabulary and a better understanding of the stories and their meaning for the child. And as Jim Gill points out, when adults join in the music play the child learns more from the experience.”

Building bonds is really very easy.  Hug, bounce, talk, dance, kiss, play, sing, read, smile and have fun with your little one!  We do all of this in story time.

This week’s handouts:  BT May_2_DucksTotTime _May_2_Ducks

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See you in the Story Time Room!



Just Add Music

I recently wrote about how I use music in story time.  Some recent studies have shown that music help babies learn better.  Maggie Fox of NBC News wrote that “Nine-month-old babies taken through 12 music sessions lasting 15 minutes showed more brain activity than babies who went through play and enrichment sessions without music, the team at the University of Washington reported.”

This Youtube clip demonstrates what babies experienced during play time at the Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences.  Babies are able to understand the rhythmic pattern of speech more easily.

So,  just add music during play time, meal time, errands, what ever you are doing.  And don’t forget, you can download up to five (5) free songs each week with your library card on freegal music.

This week’s handouts: BT_April_25_Dinosaurs,  TotTime_Apr_25_Dinosaurs

Calendar of Events

See you in the Story Time Room!