Kids Blog

09/09/2013 - 2:29pm

The first day of Kindergarten can simultaneously be fun and fearful, thrilling and anxious, exhilarating and tearful, and that’s just for the adults!  Imagine what it’s like for a 5-year old!

Easing that transition is why approximately forty public and private agencies, businesses, and individuals have joined together for the Passport to Kindergarten initiative spearheaded by Smart Beginnings Rappahannock Area.  Our goal is for every kindergarten student to begin school with a strong foundation for school success.  In support, library branches have dedicated a small portion of their annual Back to School display specifically to kindergarteners and created a bookmark filled with titles to help ease the transition for children and their caregivers.   

09/03/2013 - 11:20am

Taro Yashima is the assumed name of children’s author and illustrator Jun Atsushi Iwamatsu. Born in the Japanese countryside to a local doctor and his wife, as a young man he found the rise in militarism prior to his country’s invasion of China and attack on America to be very much against his personal beliefs. He and his wife Tomoe, also an artist, joined peaceful protest groups called “culture clubs” that used their art to make anti-authoritarian statements about Japan’s government and the harsh conditions people lived under to support the military as it readied for war.

08/30/2013 - 11:36am

Twenty years before Jamestown was founded, over 100 women, men, and children came to Virginia to try their luck at starting a colony. They arrived on the stormy shores of what we know now as North Carolina. They were not the first to land there. Two years before, another group of colonists, all men, gave up trying to settle Roanoke Island and sailed back to England. The supply ships arrived too late to save the abandoned first colony, but they left behind fifteen soldiers to mind the fort who soon vanished into the wilds, driven off by an Indian attack.

08/29/2013 - 5:33pm

In fall, the woods are filled with trees and squirrels and birds and perhaps outlaws with hearts of gold, if your imagination stretches far enough. In England, long ago there arose a legend of a man who lived in the forest with his band of other outlaws. The story goes they stole from the rich, gave to the poor, and fought for justice. Their legend continues to be told today.

08/28/2013 - 9:31am
The Fredericksburg Welsh Festival Poetry Contest, the Library, and Your Ancestor

Yes, there is a connection between the upcoming Fredericksburg Welsh Poetry Contest, the library, and your personal ancestors. Although it seems a tad far-fetched, it really is easy to see how the library can connect you to anything and anyone. Here’s how this connection works: since the library is a community center and encourages local groups to keep us informed as to their upcoming public events, we discovered that the Welsh Society of Fredericksburg is sponsoring a poetry contest as part of their upcoming annual festival this September 21. The deadline for entries is September 1.

08/05/2013 - 8:09am

Ruth Sawyer lived an extraordinary life. Though born many years before women had the right to vote, there is no doubt that she was a thoroughly independent and extremely intelligent woman with a knack for collecting stories and retelling them.

She did more than collect interesting tales and set them in books, although that would be enough for many writers. But Ruth did more. For her, connecting children with stories was critical.  After attending the Garland Kindergarten Training School, she moved to Cuba in 1900 to teach storytelling to teachers working with children who were orphaned during the Spanish-American War.

07/31/2013 - 12:16pm

An aquarium is a watery world in miniature. It can be as complicated as you want or just a simple and safe place to keep a beautiful and patient pet. If you're new to fish keeping, you should start with the basics, but even beginners can have a terrific aquarium. Both beta fish (also known as Siamese fighting fish or bettas) and goldfish are good for first-timers. They're attractive and not so demanding of a special environment in order to thrive.

07/25/2013 - 3:01am
Welcome to Your Awesome Robot by Viviane Schwarz

Welcome to Your Awesome Robot, by Viviane Schwarz, is part comic, part how-to guide, and all around a hilarious way to use your imagination to make something cool. It follows the story of a child who receives a cardboard box with the title phrase written across it.

From there, we explore the fun and logistics of making your own personal robot costume. The book explains the materials you need, tasks that might require adult assistance, and potential hazards to be aware of during your robot's construction. With this guide, your imagination is your only limit.

07/18/2013 - 3:02am
Nursery Rhyme Comics

Nursery Rhyme Comics is an all-star line-up of cartoonists and illustrators who use their artistic chops to put fun spins on all sorts of old rhymes and songs. Fifty rhymes adapted by fifty cartoonists. Woo-hoo! I'd like to take a moment to point some choice selections.

07/16/2013 - 3:02am
Books for the Early Elementary Set

The mid-2000s were kind to my extended family when within a 12-month period, two nieces and a nephew joined it.  This year, they will all reach that extremely enjoyable early elementary age.  Their sense of humor is growing strong, their curiosity runs rampant, they’re fun to talk with and I enjoy hearing their newly formed perspectives and opinions!  Two of those children turn 7 this week and I can’t wait for them to see their birthday presents--books of course. 

Non-fiction books coincide with this group's avid curiosity!  My niece has such an avid interest in the weather that the first thing she did when she got home from school was check the forecast on her mom’s old phone.   She’s going to love the DK (Dorling Kindersley) Eye Wonder book called “Weather.”  When the DK books were first published they seemed too busy, but children loved them and I have learned over the years to appreciate them as well.  Heavy with photographs accompanied by small amounts of text, these books are a great and very accessible way to enjoy non-fiction!  She can scan the table of contents for subjects of interest or just flip through, reading about any picture that captures her attention.  Mine was caught by a photo of some funny looking water bubbles.  Did you know that raindrops aren’t tear-shaped, but instead “ actually look more like squashed buns?” 

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