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July 2012 
Frederick County Public Libraries


A trip to the library this summer is a workout for your imagination! No matter what your interests are, you'll find family-friendly activities and events that are sure to enlighten and entertain. From the Summer Reading Program to concerts, parties and book clubs, there is something to please everyone.


As the thermometer rises, we look forward to seeing you often at the cool events offered at your local library.

In the event that this newsletter was forwarded to you by a friend and you would like to continue to receive information about library programs, services, and events, we invite you to sign up here for our email newsletter.

Darrell Batson, Director
Frederick County Public Libraries
In This Issue
Dream Big, Read!...Books and Activities
Sing Along with Charlie Hope
Step Back in Time at the Medieval Faire!
Fun and Easy Early Lit. Tips
Who Cares About Puppets
On the Road Reading Again
Keep in Touch
Special Event

The Nocturnal Sky Above

featuring Skip Bird

(aka The Astronomy Guy)

from the Westminster Astronomical Society


Thursday, July 19, 6:30 pm

Thurmont Regional Library


For details, click here


There are many wonderful books and activities about nocturnal animals, the night and dreams--all subjects related to our 2012 reading program--'Dream Big, Read!' Here are just a few suggestions for books and activities that you and your children may enjoy together.


Maisy's Rainbow Dream is a fun, colorful book that your young children will enjoy. This book is one of many by Lucy Cousins about a mouse named Maisy and her animal friends. After reading the book, visit Maisy's Fun Club for crafts and activities.  


For a classic read by a beloved children's author, take a trip In the Night Kitchen with Maurice Sendak. Mickey takes a dream like journey into the bakers' kitchen where he falls into cake batter, creates a plane out of bread dough and flies himself over the top of the Milky Way.


Bats are not just for Halloween and FCPL has a lot of fun bat books for children. You've seen Brian Lies' illustrations; they are right on our Summer Reading Program children's game boards!  Because of his wonderful and amusing pictures, I really like Brian Lies' bat books - Bats at the Beach, Bats at the Library, and Bats at the Ballgame. Bats are nocturnal so bats visit all these places at night and the dark pictures illustrate that point.There are many fun follow-up activities that you cElmo Visitould do. Bring some bats inside by creating your own hanging bats. Visit Disney's Family Fun on-line for directions­ or to learn interesting facts about bats--click here.  When you discover that a single bat can eat 1200 mosquitoes in an hour, you may want to build a bat house with your child. You're in luck! This site has free bat house plans for you to use.


Visit your local library for these titles or let us help you find others. Also, don't forget that our non-fiction section has many wonderful books related to our theme. For a nice general craft activity, you and your child could make a child safe lantern that utilizes a battery-powered tea light. You can find this craft at Disney's Family Fun--click here.


Don't forget to 'Dream Big, Read!' this summer!


Caroline O'Connell

Brunswick Public Library  


Charlie Hope

Charlie Hope's fresh approach to children's music stems from the many years she has spent with children--from receiving her degree in art therapy with children to her work in preschools and private homes. Charlie recently won the 2012 Juno Award for Best Children's Music Album (the Canadian Grammys) and has been honored with several Independent Music Awards. Her contemporary, melodic, interactive, and sing-able songs are just as enjoyable for adults as they are for children. To learn more, visit charliehopemusic.com.


Charlie Hope: Let's Sing! (all ages, with adult )

Friday, July 6, 10:15 am - Urbana

Friday, July 6, 1:30 pm - C. Burr ArtzCharlie Hope

Saturday, July 7, 10:15 am - Brunswick

Saturday, July 7, 1 pm - Middletown

Saturday, July 7, 3:30 pm - Walkersville


Charlie Hope: Music on the Deck for Kids! (ages 3-18)

Sunday, July 8, 2 pm - Thurmont


Written by Marlene England
for FCPL's BookMarks summer publication


Journey to a time of knights, princesses, castles and dragons at the C. Burr Artz library's Medieval Faire! Tuesday, July 10 at 2 pm, this program is guaranteed to be full of fun and adventure. Discover your medieval name before creating your family crest! Fashion your own ring or bejeweled goblet! See if you can find hidden treasures during our scavenger hunt! And be sure to come dressed in your medieval best!

 Elmo Visit

This event is for children ages 9-14 and requires registration. To register, click here or call 301-600-3780. Light refreshments will be served.


Submitted by Carly Schilling

C. Burr Artz Public Library


You are your child's first and best teacher--no pressure, right? How do you teach an infant or toddler? Are they really ready for "learning"? Here are a couple easy and fun examples of Early Literacy Skills you can incorporate into your child's routine. Some are things you might already be doing but didn't realize just how beneficial they are.


First, what are Early Literacy Skills1?  Early Literacy Skills (ELS) are basic skills which help prepare children for learning and school by building a solid foundation for reading, writing and arithmetic. A solid foundation can help make learning easier and more rewarding. ELS should be fun ways for you and your child to interact and connect.


Actively using arms and legs develops gross motor skills. Activities where children do what is called 'cross the midline' (crossing the center of their body) help develop children's minds as well as their bodies. Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes or Shak'in Like a Leafy Tree are wonderful activities for this. ELS: Physical Development.


Helping children to see the order in which things take place helps them develop the mathematical concept of sequencing. Make a Early Litrecipe together showing them how to follow the steps. Allow them to instruct you on how to get breakfast ready: first we get out a bowl and spoon, then the cereal, finally the milk. Read a book and have them retell what happened at the beginning, in the middle and how the story ended. Have them retell you a story they enjoyed during story time on the car ride home. ELS: Mathematical and Scientific Thinking.


Even if you can't sing on key, sing to and with your child! They aren't looking for a concert they are looking to share something with a person who is important to them. This activity can be great fun; it doesn't require any special equipment or cost any money. Try a variety of styles from kid's songs like Apples and Bananas or Bringing Home a Baby Bumble Bee to oldies like Puff the Magic Dragon and modern songs sung kid friendly like Stuck Like Glue.  ELS: The Arts.


Learning includes a lot of imagination. Having children think up their own endings to stories helps develop this. Ask "What if ...?" and see what ideas your child comes up with. There is no right or wrong answers just the potential for some fun insight into how and what your child is thinking. ELS: Approaches to Learning.


These tips are only a few ideas to help get you started or encourage you to continue building a strong foundation for your child's future learning.  Share a laugh, have some fun and make a memory or two.


1The Early Literacy Kit: A Handbook and Tip Cardsby Betsy Diamant-Cohen and Saroj Nadkarni Choting (Oct 1, 2009)


Submitted by Miss Adrienne

Walkersville Library 
Mr Jon and George
George and Mr. Jon



Puppets? Really? Do kids still care about them? Do librarians? I mean they are just lame old toys right? Why play and use your imagination when we have television and the internet to turn our brains to mush, right? (Did I say that out loud? Oops!) I care about puppets and I think they are the best! And I think children and puppets are a great combo! It is wonderful for kids to see adults using their imaginations, and it's great for children to engage their own creativity and imagination....and the puppets love it too. For real, I promise! Haven't you seen Toy Story? OK I digress. I especially love to use puppets in my storytimes at the library, and here is why.


Ice Ice Breaker Baby:

For one, it really helps to break down the barrier between the child and the adult storytime presenter (that's me) that they don't know. One minute the adult could seem scary to them, and the next minute they are laughing because a small stuffed bunny disarmed them and made them smile. Suddenly their fear is turned into fascination and curiosity--especially if the puppet is shy. Then the kids see it as their job to help bring the puppet out of his shell...especially if he is a turtle. Ha-ha get it? Thanks folks, I'm here all week!


Uh, It's Kind of Magical:

Kids, especially ages 1-3, are willing and ready to believe the storytime presenter. So if you have a friend that talks to you that happens to be a small stuffed monkey you keep in your bag, yup they will believe you if you think he is real. And if you develop that character and bring him out often, the puppet can turn into a magical type "person" that the kids are waiting to see when they come to storytime. And before you know it you will be chopped liver (as my dad says), and the kids will be just waiting to see Tommy the Tortoise come out to say, "Hi!" Chopped liver, yeah that sounds awful...


Realism Is Key...oooh! That Sounds Fancy:

Being realistic with the puppet is important too. What I mean is that the puppet needs to do what the puppet does. So bird puppets can fly and groundhogs cannot, duh. So when you take out Garry the Groundhog puppet, make sure he is seated properly on your lap or your hand because he can't fly. Also, never let the kids see you take the puppet on or off your hand--because it's not a puppet. He's real and he's your friend. So hide your friend Ollie the Octopus in a bag, or a box, or behind your flannel board. Put the puppet on your hand and THEN bring him out. Also, give him a voice different than your own that makes sense for that puppet. A Turtle could talk s-l-o-w-e-r, bears could talk deeper and growlier (is that a word?). And if you treat the puppet seriously and have a real conversation with it, the kids will follow suit. Got it? Great!


Fun, Fun, Fun:

Lastly, puppets are about fun! If you have fun, the kids will have fun. If the puppet is silly, the kids will laugh. If the puppet is shy, and you recognize that, the kids will do the same and also show some compassion and sensitivity to the puppet. Commit yourself to believing in the puppet and so will the kids. And the land of imagination and fun, fun, fun will be wide open to everyone in the room for the next thirty minutes!


Submitted by Jon Lewis

C. Burr Artz Public Library


As summer is here many of us will begin the daunting task of preparing for road trips. Let's be sure to include audio books at the top of our packing lists! A good audio book may provide many miles of laughter or suspense for all traveling together. This bonding experience can help to avoid that dreaded question, "Are we there yet?!?" Audio books also encourage the memories to begin in the car even before reaching our destination. The well-chosen audio book appeals to all ages and is not only quality literature but uses a narrator that is charismatic and dynamic. Listening is a learned skill that can be fostered by audio books. An additional option is to check out the book in print as well as the audio book so that some passengers can follow along! Here are some of the best audio books that can be found in the catalog at fcpl.org.


Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo. Read by Cherry Jones.  

(2 hrs, 28 min)

This is the perfect combination of marvelous writing and a gifted narrator. This emotional story of 10-year old Opal's search to make sense of the world after the death of her mother finds a willing and loyal companion in the stray dog, Winn Dixie. American actress, Cherry Jones brings a sparkling quality to the novel.


Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl. Read by Eric Idle. (3 ˝ hrs)

This is another wonderful reading of a Roald Dahl novel. Eric Idle, better known for "Monty Python's Flying Circus" is an excellent choice of narrator for this well-known story.


Charlotte's Web by E.B. White. Read by E.B. White. (3 hrs, 30 min)

This classic read by E.B. White is sure to bring joy to all listeners. The relationship between Charlotte and Wilbur is unforgettable.


Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late by Mo Willems.  

Read by Mo Willems. (10 min)

This hilarious tale of a pigeon with many excuses for going to bed will ring true with kids and parents. Mo Willems is hilarious as the narrator of his book. Also included is the options for page-turning signals.


Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling. Read by Jim Dale. (8 hrs, 17 min)

Jim Dale is the amazing narrator of all of the Harry Potter books. His multitude of consistent distinctive voices contributes to a delightful experience through audio. These audiobooks are sure to please every age.


Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary. Read by Neil Patrick Harris. (2 hrs, 30 min)

This book follows the adventures of Henry when he adopts a dog. The reading by Neil Patrick Harris sets this apart as an excellent audio book.


Holes by Louis Sachar. Read by Kerry Beyer. (4 hrs, 37 min)

A story of a crazy correctional camp, Stanley Yelnats is forced to focus on survival and does so without sacrificing relationships. With a bit of Texas accent, Beyer transports the listener to the desolate camp in the blink of an eye. Be aware that this story is probably not for young children.


James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl. Read by Jeremy Irons. (2˝hrs)

This outstanding piece of literature is only enhanced by the performance here by Jeremy Irons. Everyone will be eager to get back into the car to hear of James' next adventure! James comes into possession of magical seeds which turns his rather pathetic world upside down. He is thrust into a new world that requires him to discover his true abilities to lead and care for others. This is a "must-listen-to!"


A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle.

Read by Madeleine L'Engle. (5 hrs, 17 min)

This book tells of a girl who is in search for her missing physicist father. Her search takes her across universes with time travel. This story is magnetic for all!


Young Fredle by Cynthia Voigt. Read by Wendy Carter. (6 hrs, 20 min)

Fredle is a house mouse that is forced into the outside world. This is a story of survival and discovery. The suspense is mild and the pace is slow but the plot line is heartwarming. Wendy Carter's television appearances include  iCarly and What I Like About You. Carter's voices are well-done and consistent.


Happy Trails and Happy Listening!


Submitted by Terri Perper

Middletown Library
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