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, October 29, 2016

Family Storytime: Wizarding Weekend Fun!

Wow! We had a nice crowd today with our extra friends who were visiting during Wizarding Weekend! We sang lots of familiar, Halloween-time songs, and read three fun books:
Three Little Ghosties by Pippa Goodhart; Ills. by AnnaLaura Cantone
The Foggy Foggy Forest by Nick Sharratt
What's in the Witch's Kitchen? by Nick Sharratt (Office Ref copy)
Three Little Ghosties by Pippa Goodhart is a very silly book - that's just one of the reasons why I love it ; ) The unique illustrations are another. Just how much trouble can three little ghosties get into? Read the book and find out! 
With the clever use of sturdy, yet translucent paper, The Foggy Foggy Forest has a mystery on every page. It's a great storytime book pick for Wizarding Weekend! What will YOU find in the foggy foggy forest?
Be brave - take a peek into the witch's kitchen! Will you want to shout "Yuck!" or will you cheer with delight at what you find? More silliness in What's in the Witches Kitchen? by Nick Sharratt! We don't own a circulating copy, but this would make a fantastic gift for the little witches in your life. Or you may ask to see it when you visit the library :)

We had fun singing old favorites like Five Little Pumpkins and Three Little Witches - find them by following the links to previous posts. Today we sang something I concocted just for Halloween:
You Are My Monster. 

You are my Monster!

You are my monster,
my only monster!
You make me happy
When skies are gray!
You’ll never know dear
How much I love you…
Please don’t take my monster away!

I had all the kids who were dressed up as characters stand up, and we sang the song to each one, inserting whatever character the child was dressed up as: You are my astronaut, my only astronaut...You are my Super Girl, my only Super Girl...etc. They were SOOOO cute!! For the felt board we did an old favorite that I put together, based on the animal characters in Little Owl's Night by Divya Srinivasan. Find it here: Little Owl's Night Felt Board. (It's the song called "One Little Owl Said Hoo!")
I had so much fun today!! I hope you did, too. And I hope those of you who couldn't make it enjoy this post!
See you next time,
Miss Kelly

Friday, October 28, 2016

Baby Storytime

What a fun morning we had! After our welcome song and rhymes, we read this book....

Maisy’s Plane by Lucy Cousins

...and sang this little call and repeat song from Jbrary:

I’m An Airplane
Tune: “Frere Jacques”

I'm an airplane
Flying high
I can tilt this way
In the sky

I'm an airplane
Flying high
I can tilt that way
In the sky

I'm an airplane
Flying high
I can make a landing
From the sky

We then sang another little airplane song I created that goes to the tune of "Little Red Wagon" (inspired by a tune I learned on Jbrary).

Bumpity, Bumpity Goes the Airplane

Bumpity, bumpity goes the airplane
Bumpity, bumpity goes the airplane
Bumpity, bumpity goes the airplane
Through the cloudy sky

Way up high the ride is quiet
Way up high the ride is quiet
Way up high the ride is quiet
Time for a nap

Next we read...

Spot’s First Walk by Eric Hill

...and some puppet friends joined us for "There’s Something In My Yard".

Spot had a lot of fun playing on his walk so we learned the baby sign for play with our weekly Baby Sign Song.

Last we read....

A Hop Is Up by Kristy Dempsey

We then shared a little fingerplay called Marching Fingers and this fun little one I learned recently:

Roll, Roll Sugar Babies

Roll roll sugar babies
Roll roll sugar babies
Clap clap clap (repeat)
Roll up high
Roll down low
Roll real fast
Roll real slow
Roll roll sugar babies
Roll roll sugar babies
Clap clap clap

Early Literacy Tip

While reading, keep baby’s attention by changing the pitch of your voice and/or dramatizing the words to make your baby smile!

We finished up with scarves, giggles and goodbyes.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Toddler & Preschool Storytime: Pre-Halloween Themes!

Hi, everybody! You may have noticed a change in this storytime title: Toddler & Preschool Storytime! We wanted to make sure that folks knew it was okay, (and encouraged :) to bring their nursery-schoolers and preschoolers to this fun storytime, and I'll tell you why. In the last 7 years of hosting toddler storytime I've noticed that big brothers and sisters often loved accompanying their younger siblings to Toddler Storytime, and, quite often, their caregivers would ask if this was alright. "Of course!" I'd always respond, we love having older kids coming to Toddler Storytime! If they don't think they're too big, I certainly don't ; ) Toddler and Preschool Storytimes for 2 years and up also have the added benefit of having just a wee bit more structure as far as learning to take direction and learning to focus - qualities that will help children when they reach preschool where there are often special times for special tasks, such as hand washing time and book time.

Also, with the new suggested age range of 24 months to 4 years, I just want to make sure that folks know this is just that: a suggestion. Many toddlers younger than 24 months will still enjoy this storytime, just as a 5 year old might still like it, too! Please don't worry too much about the age range - you know your child best and are the best one to decide if this is a good fit! Try any storytime we offer for your little ones. We have Baby Storytime, Toddler & Preschool Storytime, and Family Storytime, each with a slightly different program outline. Just as there are babies that are perfectly content to sit through Family Storytime, where their older sibling might be coming to enjoy more books with longer stories, there are toddlers who like the early literacy-based rhymes, songs and cuddle times that dominate Baby Storytime. See what works best for you and your children (as well as what your schedule will allow!) knowing everybody is always welcome at any of our storytimes!

Well, enough about the big change, (which isn't really so big ; ) Here's what we read today:
Mouse's First Halloween by Lauren Thompson; Ills. by Buket Erdogan
I'm Not Scared! by Jonathan Allen

Knowing we have a much younger "audience" at Toddler & Preschool Storytime, and knowing not everybody celebrates Halloween, I like to just touch on Halloween themes such as pumpkins, kitties, autumn and nighttime....Whether you celebrate this holiday or not, your children are bound to run into things that represent Halloween that may seem scary :) I want to share some of those things in a gentle, or maybe even funny way. Helping your child be reassured about the world around them is one of my goals! To that end, Mouse's First Halloween is the perfect book. Mouse sees all sorts of different things when she goes out at night around Halloween, and come to find out, they're "not so scary after all." Now, you might have a little one who loves to be scared! They're all so different, aren't they? Baby Owl, in I'm Not Scared! actually does get a little scared at night, but he hates to admit it ; ) After all, that's what owls do - go out at night! Go for a walk with him and his stuffy, Owly, to see who he runs into (as well as who runs into him!) on his nighttime walk. Rest assured, at the end of the day, a cozy bed and a story awaits :)
After reading Mouse's First Halloween, we sang a fun song by Kathy Reid-Naiman: Roll That Pumpkin Down to Town. Find it on her When It's Autumn CD (which we did own, but it was lost. The new copy should be in soon!)

Roll That Pumpkin Down to Town!      (by Kathy Reid-Naiman)

Roll that pumpkin down to town (Make a rolling motion with your hands!)

Roll that pumpkin down to town

Roll that pumpkin down to town

It’s almost Halloween!

First you cut the top right off…(Pretend to cut the top off!)

It’s almost Halloween!

Scoop the seeds from deep within….(Pretend to stick your hands right in there! Eeeww!)

It’s almost Halloween!

Then cut out a silly face…..(You get the idea.....)

It’s almost Halloween!

Put a candle deep within….

It’s almost Halloween!

I love that song! We also met some nocturnal animals as we sang this song:

Nocturnal Animals
On a moonlit night when the stars are out
There are nocturnal animals all about ~
"Whoo, whoo, whoo!" What do I see?
A wise old owl looking at me.
On a moonlit night when the stars are out
There are nocturnal animals all about ~
"Peek, peek, peek!" What do I see?
A raccoon robber looking at me.
On a moonlit night when the stars are out
There are nocturnal animals all about ~
"Eee, eee, eee!" What do I see?
A little black bat just looking at me.
On a moonlit night when the stars are out
There are nocturnal animals all about ~
"Meow, meow, meow!" What do I see?
A curious kitten looking at me.
On a moonlit night when the stars are out
There are nocturnal animals all about ~
"Squeak, squeak, squeak!" What do I see?
A little brown mousie looking at me! 

Can you think of any other animals that come out mainly at night?

Next week we'll explore Things That Go. I'm planning on a Sponge Boat craft for you and your child to make. I hope you'll join us! Also Wizarding Weekend is coming up this weekend, as well as Downtown Trick or Treat on Friday. Stop in and say Hi on Friday, if you're out and about, and show us your costumes!

Have a lovely week, and see you next time,
Miss Kelly

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Family Storytime: Apples and Pumpkins!

Yes, more apples and pumpkins! And more poems and songs about apples and pumpkins! (If you need even more still, check out the Toddler Storytime post via the link near the bottom of this post :) Here are the books:
Little Apple by Brigitte Weninger; Ills. by Anne Moller
Patty's Pumpkin Patch by Teri Sloat
Sixteen Runaway Pumpkins by Dianne Ochiltree; Ills. by Anne-Sophie Lanquetin

What wonderful books about apples and pumpkins! I love how Little Apple helps us appreciate these edible beauties of the autumn! Lovely illustrations, a lesson in apple tree biology, and a message of gratitude make this book perfect to share with your family. Patty's Pumpkin Patch is a favorite of mine, too. If you enjoy getting out to farms and orchards in the fall, this book is just oozing the essence of all that is wonderful about that experience. Plus you can learn a LOT about how pumpkins grow! Sixteen Runaway Pumpkins is a fun book about picking pumpkins, math, accidents and pumpkin pie. With a can-do spirit, Sam picks and counts sixteen pumpkins, but on the way home there's a little accident.....! Read the story to find out what happens! I used 16 felt pumpkins on the felt board to share the math - it was fun!

Let's have a poem about apples!
Apple Tree
Here is the tree 
With leaves so green. (Stand and hold out your arms and spread your fingers!)
Here are the apples 
That hang in between. (Make fists with your fingers for the apples!)
When the wind blows
The apples with fall (Sway in the wind; make the apples fall to the ground.)
And here is the basket
To gather them all! (Make a basket in font of you with your arms.)

Here's a song about pumpkins and apples that I made up after being inspired by Jbrary's Fall post about tunes that feature songs about animals and plants that are specific to your region. Check out their wonderful suggestions:   I wrote one that is specific to autumn and it goes like this:
It’s Pumpkin Time!

It’s pumpkin time!

It’s pumpkin time!
Time for picking apples and it’s pumpkin time!
It’s pumpkin time!
It’s pumpkin time!
Time for picking apples and it’s
pumpkin time!

Pick apples! Pick apples!
Time for picking apples and it’s pumpkin time!

It’s pumpkin time!
It’s pumpkin time!
Time for picking apples and it’s pumpkin time! 

Go to the link and watch the Jbrary Youtube for the tune - and then make up some more fun songs yourself!

Check out this link to Toddler Storytime to see Adelle's adorable felt board! (Which I used again today ; )

It was so much fun sharing stories and songs with you today! 
See you next time,
Miss Kelly

Friday, October 21, 2016

Baby Storytime

It was a cool, rainy day but baby storytime always brightens up our mornings!  After our welcome songs and rhymes, we read....

Fall Leaves by Liesbet Slegers

...and sang this little song from Storytime Katie

Ten Little Leaves

One little, two little, three little leaves,
Four little, five little, six little leaves,
Seven little, eight little, nine little leaves,
Ten little leaves fall down.

...and a little squirrel puppet joined us for this song, sung to the tune of "Grand Old Duke of York" :

Frisky Squirrel

Oh, the frisky little squirrel
He gathers nuts and seeds.
He hides them for the winter months
So he'll have all he needs.

Oh, up-up-up he goes
And down-down-down he comes.
He runs around - goes up and down.
His work is never done.

Next we read...

Wake Up, Night by Alyssa Satin Capucilli

...and some nocturnal puppets joined up for this song:

You Can Hear
Tune: She’ll Be Coming Round the Mountain

You can hear the owls hooting in the night, HOO! HOO!
You can hear the owls hooting in the night, HOO! HOO!
You can hear the owls hooting, you can hear the owls hooting
You can hear the owls hooting in the night! HOO! HOO!

(Repeat with mice squeaking, dogs snoring, bats flapping, cats meowing)

After all this talk of night, we learned our baby sign for the week "sleep".

Last we read...

Hugs and Kisses by Roberta Grobel Intrater

...and sang one of my favorite songs, with hand movements I learned from Jbrary:


Skinnamarink e-dink, e-dink,
Skinnamarink e-doo,
I love you. (repeat)
I love you in the morning,
And in the afternoon;

I love you in the evening,
And underneath the moon.
Skinnamarink e-dink, e-dink,
Skinnamarink e-doo, I love you.

At my house, we changed the words to it for diaper changing time so it went:

Skinnastinky stinky, stink
Skinnastinky stew
I smell poo. (repeat) :)

We then did one of my favorite little rhymes where babies are lifted up in the air (it's amazingly cute from where I sit!) called Up, Up, Up.

After all that good hugging and kissing, I shared this early literacy tip about snuggling and reading:

When you snuggle and read with your children, their brains begin to associate language with positive emotions. Children with positive language experiences are often more motivated to learn to read themselves!

We finished up with shakers and our goodbye rhymes and songs.

ANNOUCEMENT: We have changed the age range guidelines for our storytimes.  Baby Storytime is now listed for ages 0-24 months.  Toddler Storytime will now be called "Toddler and Preschool Storytime" and will be for children ages 24 months - 4 years.  We're very flexible with these guidelines, however.  Bring your little ones to whichever storytime suits them best. 

See you next week!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Toddler Storytime: Down on the Farm!

We "went down to the farm" today at Toddler Storytime, with a focus on animals. (There was a LOT of Baa-ing going on! That seemed to be the predominant animal, much to Cow's dismay. It's usually the "Moo" that gets the most verbiage ; ) There were also a lot of little ones checking each other out, which was really sweet! I have a feeling that there is some major friend-making going on with this group :) Here are the books we read:
Hello, Day by Anita Lobel
I Went Walking by Sue Williams; Ills. by Julie Vivas (Our Big Book Office Ref version)

There are so many great books about farms and farm animals - it's always hard to choose  just three with this theme! I've always loved Hello Day for it's sweet simplicity. When my daughter was very small, one of her favorite bedtime books was Lobel's Once: a Lullaby. I think it's out of print now, but Lobel's dreamy, sweet narrative and homey illustrations make these books perfect to share with toddlers. I love all of Simms Taback's lift-the-flap books, so of course, Simms Taback's Farm Animals is always on my list. I Went Walking by Sue Williams is always a nice pick for little ones. Sing a line and have your toddlers repeat it after you, to the tune of Frere Jacque! Other great authors for books about farms and farm animals are: Nancy Tafuri, Will Hillenbrand, Wendell Minor, and Eric Hill (can't leave out Spot on the Farm!!) to name just a few.
Old MacDonald Had a Baby Farm! Wait, what? Oh yes, if you know me at all, you know I can't leave Old MacDonald alone. There's just too much fun to be had with this song! Today, instead of regular old farm animals, we highlighted some baby animals you might find down on the farm:

Old MacDonald had a Baby Farm!
Old MacDonald Had a Baby Farm
Ee-i, ee-i, O!
And on that farm she had a lamb!
Ee-i, ee-i, O!
With a Baa-baa here.etc.

And on that farm she had
chickPeep! Peep!
A pigletoink - oink!
A puppyArf! Arf!!
A kittenMew, mew!
Can you think of any other baby animals you might find on a farm? Sing about them! :)
We also sang a new song I dreamed up. I think I had been listening to a lot of folk music CDs for kids ; )

Let’s Go To the Farm-O!
Let’s go to the farm-o,
Let’s go to the farm!
What will we see at the farm-o?
What will we see at the farm?
Will we see a cow-o?
Will we see a cow?
Yes, we’ll see a cow-o,
Yes we’ll see a cow!
And what will SHE say? (spoken)

 Will we see a pig-o?
Will we see a pig?
Yes, we’ll see a pig-o,
Yes we’ll see a pig!
And what will HE say? (spoken)

 Will we see a sheep-o?

Will we see a sheep?

Yes we’ll see a sheep-o!

Yes we’ll see a sheep!

And what will SHE say?


 Will we see a rooster-o?

Will we see a rooster?

Yes we’ll see a rooster-o!

Yes we’ll see a rooster!

And what will HE say?


I know you can think of some more animals and their sounds for this one! If you need the tune, you'll have to get with me on it. It's another one that I just made up :)

Here's a sample of the craft we did today:

Cottonball Sheep, made by one of our toddler attendees :)
So beautiful! Mom said she looks like she's grazing - I think so, too!

Thanks for heading down to the farm with me today! Thank a farmer when you see one! Thank the cows and the sheep and the other animals that help to feed and clothe us, too :)

See you next time!
Miss Kelly