@ Naperville Public Library

Archive for June, 2012

Is this the best Children’s Book of 2012?

According to a Betsy Bird, a blogger at School Library Journal, Sadie and Ratz, by Australian teen author Sonya Hartnett, is the best book published in the States this year.

2012’s Best Book?

Sadie and Ratz are the names of Hannah’s two hands, and they exist to torment her younger brother, “Baby Boy.”  In this slim chapter book  (60 pages, 3 illustrated chapters) for younger readers, the author is able to venture into the taboo subject of the selfish and destructive tendencies of children, especially toward their younger siblings. Hannah describes her hands: “Together they make a good team. This is what they do: crush thing up/twist and scrunch/scratch!scratch!scratch!”

 Baby Boy soon catches on, and names his own bad hands, “Colin and Scraps!”

 This book has an edginess to it that most books for this age group avoid. The black and white charcoal drawings by Ann James capture the darkness and confusion of the  childhood feelings of displacement, imagination, jealousy and rage. 

So, is it the best Childrens Book of 2012? Check it out, and share it with your children,  especially those in the 5-8 age range.

Carla E. @ Naper Blvd. Library


Our NEW “GRAB ‘N GO” Nonfiction Tables at Naper Blvd. Library!

Grab one!

If your child is a reluctant reader, try a book from our new “Grab ‘N Go” nonfiction tables in the Childrens Department at Naper Blvd. Library!

Titles for older readers (“Grab “N Go”) are displayed face up on a small table by the Childrens Reference Desk. Books for younger kids (“Grab “N Go, Jr.”) are face up on a table by the Program Room door. The limited number of books are easy to browse, easy to select and check out.

What’s so great about nonfiction (the ones with numbers on their spines)? Nonfiction represents the true world, and can answer a lot of questions children have. Information is presented in graphically pleasing ways, using photographs, artwork, bright colors, eye-catching fonts, graphs, cartoons, and text boxes! These books just beg to be explored!

Please open me and bring me home!


 Our “Grab “N Go” table displays change every week, and can feature current events or complement our Family Storytime themes.

Kids can read nonfiction differently than fiction (stories from the author’s imagination). They can read some chapters only, part of the book, or read nonfiction out of page order — whatever catches their fancy. They can linger on some pages, and skip others. They can find specific facts using an index or table of contents.

Many children, especially boys, are looking for “the facts, ma’am, just the facts,” especially when it comes to:

  • how to make a paper airplane fly
  • how to do a magic trick
  • how much a Great Dane weighs
  • how pirates talk
  • what the Titanic looked like and who was on board
  • how whales communicate
  • what a spider looks like up close … just to give a few examples.

Encourage your child to GRAB a book from our new displays, and then GO and enjoy it. Your reluctant reader may bloom before your eyes.

-Carla E. @ Naper Blvd. Library


Playing is learning!

Children grow and learn through play. When they sing, rhyme, make up stories, dance, and act out with puppets and dolls, they are learning to talk and read. They are learning to share. They are learning to cooperate and think. Whether playing a board game or a ball game, kids learn to set rules of play and follow them.  They are learning to make sense of their world and the other people who live in it!

Kids write, draw, cut, paste, jump, hop and skip … and at the same time develop small and large muscles. They grow mentally and physically stronger.

Human beings are meant to be part of the natural world. Let you child play outside in the bright sun, spring rain, winter snow, falling leaves and light of the summer moon. Moving our bodies is essential to feeling mentally healthy and happy.

Help your children  play. Be silly with them. Laugh. Make believe. Walk. Observe. Run. Bike.

If possible, invite a pet to share in your family life. A dog or cat is always willing to play! And they give more than they ask for.

Kids need to enjoy unscheduled time — it gives them a chance to dream, imagine and be joyful.  Encourage your child to be a doer, not a watcher. Turn off the TV, the computer, the phone, and PLAY!


 -Carla @Naper Blvd. Library