Friday, November 7, 2014

THE BREAD REVOLUTION.

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.My favorite bread cookbook is "THE TASSAJARA BREAD BOOK."  More than 30 years old, it covered whole grain bread making in an era when most people were still buying Wonder Bread.  It changed not only how I made bread, but the whole grain ingredients that I used.  I had never heard of the "sponge" method of raising bread and I enjoyed making making my loaves using my large white bowl.  "The Bread Revolution" by Peter Reinhart has the potential to revolutionize the making of bread for a new generation just like the "Tassajara Bread Book" did for mine.  The volume will be very interesting for those people who store whole grains and would enjoy the health benefits of baking with sprouted grains.

One negative note:  I was looking forward to this title then I opened the book and was disappointed at the font size and choice of print coloring. I found it difficult to read, might only be a personal issue. If you are using a protective cookbook stand in the kitchen for your recipes the print is very small and difficult to read at a glance while preparing a recipe.  Perhaps buying it as a ebook would making it more readable for the cooks who plan on preparing recipes from this book.


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Story Time Review

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Halloween Story Time

Our final week of this session and we did Halloween stories with the children. We read It's Halloween Night by Jennifer O'Connell, Ghost Ate it All by Janee Trasler, The Spooky Wheels on the Bus by Elizabeth Mills, Algernon Graves is Scary Enough by Peter Bollinger and How Big Could your Pumpkin Grow? by Wendell Miner.

Since the Ghost Ate it All book is so small I decided to translate it into a flannel board story. I printed off pictures of the food mentioned in the story and laminated it. I then made a tissue paper ghost and printed out a picture of the Frankenstein monster. This worked so well the kids really enjoyed it. As an extension activity I also printed out some picture of Halloween items like spiders and bats and such. I took an empty milk jug and cut out a square mouth and drew on some black eyes with magic marker. Then the kids took turns choosing a picture and feeding things to the ghost. Sorry somehow the photos of all of this got deleted from the staff camera! But I think you can use your imagination since it was fairly straight forward.

For our craft we continued with The Ghost Ate It All theme. I gave the children a die-cut ghost and some pictures of the Halloween items we used for the previous activity. They glued the ghost onto a piece of construction paper and added what they wanted inside the ghost. Then they could take home the ghost and retell the story.

Next session will begin in January! Registration day will be January 6th at 10:00 a.m.
See you all soon!

Michele Schumann,
Children's Librarian

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Flour + Water Pasta

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From San Francisco's popular Italian restaurant,  "Flour + Water", comes a complete primer on the craft of pasta making.  You might think that a comprehensive tutorial in pasta making would be dry, but you’d be wrong. I read flour + water in one sitting, fascinated by the lively story of one of San Francisco’s great restaurants and the smartly written, easy to follow recipes. This is an enchanting, inspiring book.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

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The Eensy Weensy Spider...came to Story Time!
This week our story time topic was spiders. We read Halloween Bugs by David A. Carter, A Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle, and Spider Sandwiches by Claire Freedman with our Jr. classes.  We read Be Nice to Spiders by Margaret Graham, The Spider and the Fly by Mary Botham Howitt with Illustrations by Tony DiTerlizzi, and The Eensy Weensy Spider Freaks Out (Big Time!) by Troy Cummings with our preschoolers.

We did a couple of spider finger plays and of course we had to sing the Eensy Weensy Spider song.

I created a spider web with some chairs and some yarn and the children pretended to be little bugs and climb under the web without getting caught by the spider. To add to the challenge, I hung some bells on the web. If they touched the web they would be caught when the bell rang and alerted the spider.

For our craft we created a web for our spider using a paper plate and some black yarn.

Next Week: Flies and bugs
Michele Schumann
Children's Librarian

Thursday, October 9, 2014

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Story Time with the Stars!

This week we read books about stars in our classes. We read Wynken, Blynken and Nod by Eugene Field, How to Catch a Star by Oliver Jeffers, The Stars by Martha Rustad, Flashlight by Betsy James, and Star Climbing by Lou Fancher. I loved using The Stars non-fiction book in the mix. I approached it with an introduction, what you might not know about stars. As we read, it was great to stop and ask, "Did you know stars are burning?" it made for some nice discussion.  We used the book and CD When You Wish Upon a Star. The book has paintings by Eric Puybaret which illustrate the words of the song from Walt Disney's film, Pinocchio, the CD contains the song performed by Judy Collins. After we played the song we did an activity with a magic wishing wand and repeated the poem Star Light, Star Bright. Each child got to tell us their wish when the magic wand pointed to them. The best wish of the week was for a unicorn!
Another fun activity we did was play a shooting star game. I made some "stars" out of tinfoil. They were cheap and easy and the best part is  they are so light weight they can't really hurt if they hit you. Then we held up a hula hoop and the children tossed their stars through. We started out low and they rolled them through then I raised it higher and they tried again. We played several rounds until the hula hoop was up to the ceiling. I was surprised at how much the kids loved such a simple game. Some even asked if they could take their stars home. 
For our craft we made a star necklace with a simple star die cut and some yarn. We decorated the star with colored salt.  The salt is easy to make, just add a few drops of food coloring to a Ziploc baggie full salt. Mash it around until it is the color you want, adding more food coloring if you want it darker. Pour out onto a paper plate to dry overnight before using. Apply glue to your project and sprinkle, much like applying glitter. I used salt shakers from the dollar store.


 Next Week we will change our focus toward Halloween and talk about spiders!

Michele Schumann,
Children's Librarian

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Story Time Review

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When the Moon Hits Your Eye...
This week for our Story Time classes we discussed the moon. We read The Mouse Who Ate the Moon by Petr Horacek, Papa Please Get Me the Moon by Eric Carle, Kitten's First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes, and Hello Moon! by Francesca Simon with our Jr. classes. We added Ten Moonstruck Piglets by Lindsay Lee Johnson and The Boy and the Moon by James Carroll for our preschool classes.


We did some space finger plays and the song Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star with our Jr. kids. We sang the song Aiken Drum and used some picture props on the flannel board to help everyone remember the words. I also used the flannel board to introduce the nursery rhyme Hey Diddle Diddle. After we had done the rhyme the traditional way we mixed up the pictures so we ended up with a silly nonsense rhyme, something like... Hey diddle diddle the cow and the fiddle the dog jumped over the spoon, the little cat laughed to see such a thing and the dish ran away with the moon.

 For our older kids we did an activity on the white board. I used a picture of the moon taped on the
board and we talked about the legend of how some people say the moon is made of green cheese. Then I asked the kids to decide of what they thought the moon could be made of. We listed the answers on the board around the moon. One especially thoughtful child decided that since the moon floats in the sky it must be made of a balloon. Other answers included wood, bricks, bubbles and plastic.

For our craft we created a night sky picture with black construction paper, a yellow cut out of the moon and some star stickers. Our take home pages were a space objects page and a circle pre-writing practice sheet.

Next week: Stars and Space
Michele Schumann
Children's Librarian


Thursday, September 25, 2014

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Welcome Back to Story Time!
Finally our fall session of Story Time has begun. We started this week with the theme of Bedtime. I read Goodnight Dog by Ed Heck, Goodnight Tiptoe by Polly Dunbar and  Put Me to Bed! by Nicola Smee with our Jr. Story time classes. We read What! cried Granny: an almost bedtime story by Kate Lum, What's Under the Bed? by Joe Fenton, Floop in the Dark by Carole Tremblay and Sleepy, oh so Sleepy by Denise Fleming  with our preschool classes.

 I showed them the Van Gogh painting Starry Night and we talked about how you know that it is time for bed.

We sang Rock-a-bye baby and rocked an animal puppet to sleep. Most of the kids know this song so they could sing along easily. We did the rhymes/songs No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, 5 Bears in the Bed, and Mother Hen and her Chicks. We also did the following finger play:
Here is the baby, (hold up one finger)
Here is her bed, (hold up the other hand palm up)
Here is her pillow, (wiggle thumb on "bed" hand)
So lay down her head, (lay finger across bed)
Pull the covers up nice and tight,  (fold fingers over baby)
Then rock her and kiss her (rock and kiss baby)
And tell her good night. (whisper) (if baby isn't asleep hold up finger and cry, then begin again)
Of course, the baby never goes to sleep the first time. So I ask the children what they think the baby could need to go to sleep. They give answers from a bottle or teddy bear to a diaper change or a lullaby. We do the rhyme again as many times as we can allowing for our schedule, making sure that the baby has what it needs each time. If they mention that she needs a bedtime story we always read her one of ours. And of course, she is asleep at the end.

We talked about bedtime routines and did an activity on the board about which bedtime activity should we do first. Get in pajamas then take a bath? Get in bed then turn off the lights? Get a drink then brush your teeth?

For our craft we had a die-cut paper doll that the children colored. I gave them each a picture of a pair of pajamas or a nightgown that they colored and glued on to get the paper doll ready for bed.

Our take home pages were a bed time routine chart and a pencil drawing of the Van Gogh painting to color on our own.

Next week: The Moon

Michele Schumann
Children's Librarian