Tompkins County Public Library

Welcome to Wild About Reading!

We LOVE chatting about books, authors, illustrators. Here you'll find some of the best books we're currently reading and what we've been sharing at our storytimes.

Tell us about the books you’re reading by writing a book review of your own at: We will post your review to this blog within the week.

Thanks for visiting and HAPPY READING!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Family Storytime: Bears, Bears, Bears!

Today was BEAR day for Family Storytime! There are many, many wonderful books about bears - here are the books we read today:

If You Were a Panda Bear by Wendell and Florence Minor
What the Grizzly Knows by David Elliott; Ills. by Max Grafe
Thank You Bear by Greg Foley

What a beautiful and informative book If You Were a Panda Bear is! It's one of those great books that includes more facts about the subject in the back of the book for curious minds, as well as websites where kids can go to learn more if they're so inclined.

What the Grizzly Knows is a wonderful journey into the imagination of a little boy.It's definitely a page-turner, especially for slightly older kids.

Thank You Bear was voted in for today's read. If you haven't read Greg Foley's Bear and Mouse books, you're in for a sweet surprise :) Always gentle, "deceptively simple," he captures the innocence of youngsters in the most heartwarming way.

Here's a counting rhyme for bear lovers: 

Five Little Polar Bears
5 Five little polar bears, playing near the shore
One tumbled in, then there were four!
4 Four little polar bears swimming in the sea,
One chased a seal, then there were three!
3 Three little polar bears in the sea so blue
One snagged an iceberg, then there were two.
2 Two little polar bears under the artic sun
One went to take a nap and that left one.
1 One little polar bear swimming all alone
He heard his mama call so he went home!

                Bye, polar bears!

Please see Toddler Storytime: Bears, Bears, Bears for more
 books, songs and fingerplays about bears!

The last Family Storytime for this semester is on December 12th. We'll have a special storytime with some puppets, snacks and crafts, AND we'll celebrate the beginning of our Winter Reading Challenge! Come on in and find out what's happening this winter at TCPL!

See you next time!
Miss Kelly

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Toddler Storytime: Food and Feeling Thankful

We had fun today reading more books about food and sharing our own puppet theater version of the Cajun Cornbread Boy again with the toddlers! Here's what we read:

Who's Hungry? by Dean Hacohen; Ills. by Sherry Scharschmidt
Maisy Makes Gingerbread by Lucy Cousins
The Cajun Cornbread Boy by Dianne de Las Casas; Ills. by Marita Gentry

I ADORE Who's Hungry? It's a perfect Toddler Storytime book as it is simple, charming, sweet and we learn about what foods different animals eat :) What could be better? And Maisy is always up to something fun, with Lucy Cousin's simple and bright illustrations highlighting the everyday pleasures of life.

Once again, we shared The Cajun Cornbread Boy in puppet theater format- such a wonderful example of how blending cultures, in the hands of a fine author and illustrator duo, de Las Casas and Gentry, can make a really fun story. And especially nice for toddlers -- the food gets away :)

I'd like to highlight one of the different fingerplays about food that we used with the toddlers today:

Bananas Unite!
We peel bananas - peel, peel bananas!
We chop bananas - chop, chop bananas!
We mash bananas - mash, mash bananas!
We eat bananas - eat, eat bananas!
Goooooo bananas!

See how to chant it here with Jbrary! Thanks so much for sharing this one with us, Jbrary! We love it!

I also want to share this wonderful rhyme from Melissa at Mel's Desk - Five Little Kernels.  It's another super, favorite with our early literacy advocates here at TCPL! Thanks to Storytime Katie for passing it on! I added a little twist: When you say "All of a sudden, one went POP!" have your little ones clap their hands on the word "POP!" The overall effect is like they are the ones making the popcorn kernels pop. It's big fun :)

Five Little Kernels
5 Five little kernels sizzling in the pot
All of a sudden, one went POP!
4 Four little kernels sizzling in the pot...
3 Three...
2 Two....
1 One....(until all the kernels have popped!  SOOOOO cute!)

Here are some photos of two of our little patrons trying out the felt board after program:

Nice job, guys!!
Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!
See you next time,
Miss Kelly
Oh, P.S.! There are only 2 more Toddler Storytimes left for this semester, but we'll start up again at the beginning of February! We'll have lots of fun in the meantime with our Winter Reading Challenge, and plenty of other great activities to keep everyone busy at your library :)

Family Storytime: Food and Feeling Thankful!

What a fun day! It's always a good thing to take time to be thankful, and for me, being a Doolittle, it's always a good time to talk about food!! We did three books about food today, one of which, Cajun Cornbread Boy, was transformed into a simple puppet show. Here's the line up:

The Beastly Feast by Bruce Goldstone; Ills. by Blair Lent
Cookie Count: A Tasty Pop-Up by Robert Sabuda (an office ref book)
The Cajun Cornbread Boy [spiced up] by Dianne de Las Casas; Ills. by Marita Gentry

If your child likes rhyming words, The Beastly Feast is for you. It's a great, older book that rhymes in so many different ways - forwards, backwards, up, down, and all around! Cookie Count is just a delight for the senses - it has some really delicious looking pop-ups - just the thing to get you in the holiday spirit! And the Cajun Cornbread Boy is one of my all time favorite books for using puppets. (I think it may become a perennial holiday puppet show!) It's so much fun to take a traditional favorite, like the gingerbread man, and get another culture's twist on the tale :)

Hmmm - with all this talk about food - here's a song to get those little ones in line at the dinner table :)

(Sing to the tune of Frere Jacques)
Chewing quietly, chewing quietly,
Do not slurp! Do not slurp!
Always say excuse me. Always say excuse me.
When we burp! When we burp!
(We always sing this with a smile - it takes a while to learn your manners!)

Let's make some Gingerbread together!

Stir a Bowl of Gingerbread
Stir a bowl of gingerbread (Pretend you have a big bowl tucked in your arm and a spoon in your hand and stir!)
Smooth and spicy brown.
Roll it with a rolling pin (Roll it out!)
Up and down!
With a cookie cutter (Pretend to cut out some shapes.)
Make some little men.
Put them in the oven until
Half past ten! (Slide them in the oven and tap your wrist to show you're watching the time.)


Let's end this post with our Thankfulness poem. There are so many wonderful cultures in our world! Some families pray, some don't, and sometimes, families who don't use prayer would like a way to teach their children about being thankful without using any religious overtones. This is a perfect poem for that. You may sing it to the tune of "Twinkle, Twinkle" if you like :)

Let's Be Thankful
Let's be thankful for this day
For our friends and for our play.
Let's be thankful, let's be glad
For the food and things we have.
Let's give thanks for you and me
And our homes and families!

I'm thankful for all of you,
and wish you all a happy Thanksgiving!
See you next time!
Miss Kelly

P.S. Only 3 more Family Storytimes to go before we break for the rest of
 December and January :( But we'll be back at the beginning of February, and in the meantime will have our Winter Reading Challenge and many other fun activities to keep you busy at the library!:) Yay!