@ Naperville Public Library

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Spider-Man Mask

It’s almost Halloween, and finding a costume that will fit your child might become a daunting task. Instead of running from store to store, why not make your own? Here are directions to make a simple Spider-Man mask, which could also be used as a template to making many other superhero masks.

What you will need:

  • A red pullover-type ski mask with two eye holes, but no mouth
  • Black fabric paint
  •  Paint brushes
  • A balloon
  • A comic book or something to reference


Blow up the balloon and tie it to a stable object. Then, place the ski mask over the balloon. Now use the brushes to apply the black paint. Look at your references, and try to reproduce what you see there. Let your mask dry. Then remove it from the balloon. Since the paint may have adhered to the balloon, you may have to pop it.

-Chris H., 95th St. Library

To Spook or Not To Spook

      October, October, how we’ve missed you…..hot cider and pumpkins, hayrides and costumes….everyone has a favorite activity to enjoy during this fall season. For some children, Halloween is an October highlight that provides a great opportunity to scare up some thrilling books from the library. Check out some of the featured titles below and discover stories for YOUR raring-for-scares reader—some are scary and some are sweet! Click on any cover to go to its entry in NPL’s catalog!

 For those young readers who want minimal chills…

Image                   I’m the Scariest Thing in the Castle by Kevin Sherry

This adorable board book is written by the same author who wrote the picture book, I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean.


  Shake D’Em Halloween Bones by Nikola-Lisa

I’ve personally seen this book wildly entertain crowds in storytime and in the classroom, and it’s easy to see why—this colorful book is fun for all ages. The text can be sung, and children can clap along to the fun beat.Ghost Eats It All! By Janee Trasler.

Short and sweet, this book has a guaranteed laugh-out-loud ending!

        A Dark and Noisy Night by Lisa Thiesing

Follow Peggy the pig as she tries to discover the causes of some strange noises on Halloween night.  Kids will love making the noises, too!

For those chapter book readers who want spooky, not scary…

                                               Are you Afraid Yet? The Science Behind Scary Stuff by Stephen James O’Meara

  Discover facts about mummies and find out how the vampire myth began in this fascinating non-fiction book. They say that truth CAN be stranger than fiction.

    Halloween Night:  Twenty-One Spooktacular Poems by Charles Ghigna

      Get your poetry fix with these spooky poems that tackle all kinds of creepy subject matter.

                                                           The Boy of a Thousand Faces by Brian Selznick

What to do when you enjoy transforming your face into different monsters? Why, you send a picture of yourself to your hero, Mr. Shadows, that’s what you do! What happens next is anyone’s guess.

For those chapter book readers who want the scariest of the scariest…

          All the Lovely Bad Ones by Mary Downing Hahn

      Get ready for chills in yet another fantastic ghost tale by the same author who brought you the   classic thriller Wait Till Helen Comes.


                                                                                                  Haunted Houses by Robert D. San Souci

Dive into 10 unique stories all focused around the theme of haunted houses. This is the first book in the “Are You Scared  Yet?” series. Don’t forget to check out San Souci’s other scary story titles.

   Ghost Liners:  Exploring the World’s Greatest Ships by Robert D. Ballard

     This intriguing non-fiction book is written by the man who rediscovered the Titanic on the ocean floor. Using stunning details and spooky photographs, Ballard tells the tales of doomed ships that never made it back to port. How can that NOT make anyone shiver?

          If you’re in grades 3rd-5th and you are looking to be spooked, come to the library for our Let Us Give You Goosebumps program. Get ready for scary stories and dastardly deeds. This program is NOT for the easily scared. No registration is required.

   When:    7:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 19th @ Nichols Library in the Storyroom

                   7:00 p.m. on Thursay, Oct. 25th @ Naper Boulevard Library in the Program Room

                  7:00 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 29th @ 95th St. Library in the Program Room

                      ~~~~Amy, 95th St. Children’s Services

The summer my daughter turned three, the main topic of conversation among my friends was “Where is your child going to go to preschool?’ Suddenly there were debates about structured vs unstructured; Montessori, Academic, half day, full day….. I will admit that I was  totally clueless. I had no idea what all of those terms meant. So, I decided I’d better do some research (which consisted of asking my friends and neighbors which schools their children would be attending). When I finally had my list and began calling the schools, I found out that the classes were full. (None of my friends mentioned that registration had begun months ago.) I did find a great preschool with a program that met my daughter’s needs, but given my lack of knowledge things could have  turned out very differently.

To help parents and caregivers choose the right preschool for their child, the Library is sponsoring the 3rd Annual Preschool Fair. The Fair will be held on Tuesday, October 23 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the 95th Street Library. Representatives from over 30 area preschools and daycare centers will be attending. It is important for parents and caregivers to know how to evaluate potential preschools. Here are a few questions to ask about a school you are considering:

  • Ask about license and accreditation
  • What is the child to teacher ratio? Ideally, there should be one teacher for every 7-10 students.
  • Does the preschool teaching philosophy align with my parenting style?
  • How many children are there per classroom? The National Association for the Education of  Young Children (NAEYC) suggests that 20 children per classroom is an ideal number.
  • What is the education and experience of the teaching staff?
  • Ask about curriculum. There should be a variety of activities appropriate for the children’s ages and needs.
  • What are the costs and fees?
  • Are there extended childcare hours, and if so, what is the cost?
  • How much parent involvement is expected?
  • What safety measures does the school have in place?
  • Visit the school. See how the children and staff interact. What is a typical daily routine? Check the cleanliness and safety of the center.

We look forward to welcoming you at the Library’s 3rd Annual Preschool Fair on Tuesday, October 23 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the 95th Street Library.

-Karen B., 95th St. Library

Going Bananas!


Are your kids craving something sweet to eat when they get home from school?

Let them go bananas with this easy to make, healthy banana smoothie.


  • 1   whole banana (ripe or frozen)
  • 1   cup Milk
  • 3   whole Ice Cubes


Peel the banana and put the ingredients in a blender and purée until smooth and creamy.

Change up the recipe by adding  fresh or frozen strawberries, fresh or frozen blueberries, or even some mango.  Try it with some unsweetened cocoa powder, peanut butter or add some protein powder.   Use yogurt instead of milk for some extra tang. 

This also makes an easy breakfast drink  so use your imagination and Go Bananas!!

 Nutrition Information for the basic recipe Per Serving:

Calories 250; Total Fat 8 g (Sat 4.5 g, Trans 0 g, Poly 0.5 g, Mono 2 g); Cholesterol 25 mg; Sodium 100 mg; Potassium 770 mg; Total Carbohydrates 38 g; Dietary Fiber 3 g; Total Sugars 25 g; Protein 9 g. Percent Daily Value: Vitamin A 6%; Vitamin B6 25%; Vitamin C 15%; Vitamin D 25%; Calcium 30%, Iron 2%

For more healthy banana snack recipes go to the Chiquita Bananas website at:


-Diana J @ Naper Blvd Library

Practice Makes Perfect!

In his book,  OUTLIERS,  Malcom Gladwell states that one becomes an expert in something only after practicing about 10,000 hours. That comes to  almost 417, 24-hour days of practice!

How many hours did your child practice reading over the summer?  Many children only have enough  unscheduled time during  the summer months of vacation to read for hours at a time.  This is when the magic begins to happen. And now it is September.

Kids get to be better readers by READING!

School has started again, and many children get practice reading during school hours. But, what can you do at home, to encourage  and model the fun of reading and writing?

*Go to the library often, and let your child choose what he or she is interested in.  These visits  can provide a  great variety of books and music  for the whole family.

*Keep books, magazines and games out and around, where your child can use them.

*Also keep lots of crayons, markers, pencils and paper around so your child can draw and write. When your child draws, ask him to tell you about the picture.

* Have a quiet time in the evening, where everybody reads.  Never underestimate the power of imagination, so choose TV, videos and computer games wisely and in moderation.

The countdown to becoming an expert in reading begins now!

On your way…

-Carla E. @ Naper Blvd. Library

ChopChop Magazine

ChopChop is a new magazine in our juvenile periodical collection. It is published quarterly by a non-profit corporation, ChopChop Kids, to encourage families to cook and enjoy healthy meals together.  There are many nutritious, good tasting and ethnic recipes that are inexpensive to prepare in each issue. Click here  for a yummy treat that uses fresh apples, Apple-cious Oat Bars. Check out this magazine on your next visit to the library. Our current issue is for library use only, but past issues can  check out for 3 weeks.

ChopChop Magazine

Wanda @Naper Blvd. Library