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Blog Posts by Subject: Children's Literature

Booktalking "Tyrannoclaus" by Janet Lawler

Ready for Christmas with dinosaurs? Then this is the book for you. Tyrannoclaus (a Tyrannosaurus rex) has presents for stegosaur girls. He has tasty treats for 

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Booktalking "Dewey's Christmas at the Library" by Vicki Myron and Bret Witter

It is Christmas at the library for the kitty! Dewey has come a long way since last winter when he was rescued by Spencer Library director Vicki from the book-return drop. This year he is ready and enthusiastic for Christmas at the library. He loves everything about the season: gift bags, red yarn galore, and a Christmas tree that 

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Great Graphic Novels for Kids 2013

Late last year, I featured some of my favorite graphic novels aimed at children 12 and under from the New York Public Library's collection. The list proved so popular I even made a sequel. Many people have asked me for a list of updated titles, so I have featured five of my new favorite comic titles that were published this year. A few of these selections are even featured in the

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Booktalking "The Twelve Bots of Christmas" by Nathan Hale

Santa glides across the sky in a spaceship-like vehicle pulled by four metallic reindeer above a city that is reminiscent of Futurama cartoons. 

On the first day of Christmas, the robot gets a cartridge in a gear tree. Every day, for a week and a half, the happy robot receives mechanical approximations of the gifts bestowed in the original

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It's Here! NYPL's Children's Books 2013

The latest edition of the New York Public Library's annual list of titles published for children can be found at Children's Books 2013 (PDF) and online at labs.nypl.org/childrens-books-2013.

Nineteen Children's Librarians pored over a wealth of new releases throughout the year, often with the help of the children in 

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Booktalking "The Gingerbread Pirates" by Kristin Kladstrup

Jim and his mother were making gingerbread men on Christmas eve one year, and Jim suggested transforming the cookies into gingerbread pirates. His mom concurred. However, Jim did not want Santa to eat Captain Cookie (complete with a toothpick peg leg), so he took him to his bedroom that 

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Children's Literary Salon in Retrospect: Picture Books on November 2, 2013

I have been curious about how picture books are constructed and illustrated, and the latest Children's Literary Salon addressed exactly that topic. Betsy Bird, Young Adult Materials Specialist at NYPL organizes and hosts the monthly program for enthusiasts of children's literature. She let the audience know that author/illustrators Peter Brown, Steve Light and Sergio Ruzzier would give brief presentations 

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Classroom Connections: 'New York, Then & Now' Immigration to Washington Heights/Inwood (Gr. 6-8)

The story of immigration to America is a rich tapestry whose opposing threads, oddly for how much they reject each other's reality, hang together as one. It outrages us and gives us hope in frighteningly equal measure.

Nowhere is this truer than New York City, a city of extremes in every sense. The community known as Washington Heights/Inwood originally spanned from 135th Street north to the top end of Manhattan Island, surrounded by the Hudson River on the west and the East River with Spuyten Duyvil's deadly currents in between. Its land is the highest ground in 

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Booktalking "Miss Smith and the Haunted Library" by Michael Garland

Miss Smith and the Haunted Library by Michael Garland, 2009

How is this for a Halloween treat? Miss Smith takes her class to a dark mansion that is now a library. Librarian Virginia Creeper, complete with blue hair, reads to the class about scary creatures 

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Banned Books Week: The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales

Once upon a time, in a land far away, there was controversy surrounding The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales. The time was in fact the early 1990s, and the places were California and Arizona. In 1990, a California school district pulled an illustrated edition of Little Red Riding Hood by Trina Schart Hyman (originally called Little Red-Cap in the Brothers Grimm 1812 version) from a first-grade 

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Booktalking "Heather Has Two Mommies" by Lesléa Newman

Heather likes pairs, and one of her favorite pairs is her two mamas: Mama Jane and Mama Kate. Kate is a doctor, Jane is a carpenter, and Heather helps them both with their jobs. The girl loves to go outside for picnics with her mothers when the weather is nice.

Then, Heather joins a play group and finds out that some kids have fathers, but she does not. This makes Heather very sad, but then she realizes that some other kids have two fathers and no mother or a mother, step-father, and father, but they do not live with their father. Teacher Molly lets the kids know that 

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Banned Books Week: Green Eggs and Ham

Our next title under the microscope during Banned Books week is the canonical nonsense tale of Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss. "I do not like them, Sam-I-am, I do not like green eggs and ham." The People's Republic of China most notably concurred with this key mantra of Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham. Beginning in 1965, it was forbidden to read Green Eggs and Ham in Maoist China because of its "portrayal of early Marxism," and the ban was not lifted until author 

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Banned Books Week: And Tango Makes Three

Greetings, and welcome to Banned Books Week! For each day of Banned Books Week, this blog will be highlighting a famous banned or challenged book. The campaign to highlght milestones in the history of banned and challenged books and promote intellectual freedom was spearheaded by library activist Judith Krug. She once said "You should have access to ideas and information regardless of your age. If anyone is going to limit or guide a young person, it should be the parent or 

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Fight for Your Right to Read: Banned Books Week 2013

From 2000 to 2009, 8 out of the top 10 books on "The Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books" were specifically written for teens or children. In fact out of that list of 100, 67 were books for teens or children. Titles such as the Harry Potter series (#1), the

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Pura Belpré, In Her Own Words: NYPL Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

Pura Belpré reading to children at the New York Public Library. (Photo credit - Centro Archives)This year as part of Hispanic Heritage Month, the New York Public Library is celebrating its premier Latina Librarian, Pura Belpré. An exhibit at the Bronx Library Center highlights the professional life of Pura Belpré—Children's Librarian, 

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Booktalking "Listen to the Wind" by Greg Mortenson and Susan Roth

The kids of Korphe, a village in Pakistan, lived in a very do-it-yourself environment. They were a society of farmers and weavers. The people made their own clothes and produced their own food. The kids even made their own toys. Prior to having a school, they held classes outside and drew lines in the dirt with sticks. So it comes as no surprise that the people of Korphe were able to 

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Booktalking "Will You, Won't You?" by Jessie Haas

Mad is not exactly thrilled to be spending the summer learning how to dance Ceilidhs (pronounced kay-lees) in the Scottish style. However, to her surprise, she finds that dancing is just like riding, in terms of the movement. She loves the geometry of the group dance, and she feels as though she is flying.

The girl imagined that trail-riding with Cloud would be dreamy 

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Booktalking "Off Like the Wind" by Michael Spradlin

Three businessmen, William Russell, Alexander Majors and William Waddell came up with the idea of using horses and riders to transport mail from Missouri to California to expedite communication between the eastern and western states. This was particularly important since the Civil War was approaching. Also, people were able to get news from their families in several days instead of months or years.

In 1860, the Pony Express was born, and it ran until 1861. In the spring of 1861, Lincoln's inaugural address traveled from Missouri to California in record time: 7 days 

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Booktalking "Lizards" by Nic Bishop

Stunning. That one word does justice to Nic Bishop's photographic talents.

Lizards existed 150 million years ago, along with dinosaurs. Some lizards lack legs; therefore they can be confused with snakes, but snakes do not have ear holes. The biggest lizard, the Komodo dragon, which is also the largest venomous animal in the world, can grow to be up to ten feet long. One of its favorite snacks is water buffalo.

Unfortunately, baby lizards do not get much of a childhood; they are on their own shortly after birth. Some lizards inhabit deserts, while 

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