Give the Gift of Reading

Looking for a last-minute gift idea? Give the gift of reading! Our booklist of bestsellers, new releases and classics is sure to delight each toddler or preschooler in your life. Whether you are looking to purchase a book or check out a title from the library, there’s something on the list for everyone! Enjoy time together, either in person, virtually or over-the-phone, with an entertaining family read aloud.

Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty: Inspired by real-life makers Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie, this beloved #1 bestseller champions STEM, girl power and women scientists in a rollicking celebration of curiosity, the power perseverance, and the importance of asking “Why?”  

Intended for ages 5 to 7-years

The Book with No Pictures by B. J. Novak: You might think a book with no pictures seems boring and serious. Except . . . here’s how books work. Everything written on the page has to be said by the person reading it aloud. Even if the words say . . .BLORK. Or BLUURF. Even if the words are a preposterous song about eating ants for breakfast, or just a list of astonishingly goofy sounds like BLAGGITY BLAGGITY and GLIBBITY GLOBBITY. Cleverly irreverent and irresistibly silly, The Book with No Pictures is one that kids will beg to hear again and again. 

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Sing a Song

Singing is a fundamental aspect for fostering early literacy and language skills. Singing slows down language so children can hear the different sounds, or phonemes, in words and introduces kiddos to new vocabulary words. Nursey rhymes are considered the building blocks of literacy because these simple songs help children identify sounds, rhymes and learn through repetition and patterns. Similarly, many nursery rhymes are stories, and singing along helps children learn about story structure and sequencing.  

Music and movement are wonderful tools to introduce and reinforce key concepts such as speed and tempo (e.g. fast and slow), positional words (e.g. up, down, in, out), opposites (e.g. quiet vs. loud) and much more. Research illustrates that music and engaging actions help children remember and retain what otherwise may be vague concepts. Similarly, music and action songs help children develop gross and fine motor skills. Fingerplays, such as the Itsy-Bitsy Spider, teach children how to manipulate each finger, helping them develop the dexterity to hold pencils and crayons. Other common childhood songs introduce children to a variety of different actions—twirl, skip, hop, gallop, etc.—which helps them build coordination, balance and concertation. Actions songs are a fun way to reinforce the importance of following directions—especially freeze dances.

Below are some of our favorite songs and CD albums to incorporate in story times to get children singing and grooving along.

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Kindergarten Readiness: Learning the Alphabet with Books

One of the most effective and easiest ways to nurture your child’s development is to read with them every day for 20 minutes. Reading fosters early literacy and creates connections in the brain that promote language, cognitive, and social and emotional development. As your child grows, reading helps the brain make connections between the written and spoken word, which widens your child’s vocabulary.

Early literacy refers to what children know about reading and writing before they actually learn to read and write. Children’s books are specifically formatted to not only help your child learn to read, but also introduce crucial concepts. Picture books are a wonderful resource for helping children make the important first step in learning to read—letter recognition. Alphabet books are dedicated to introducing letters and their accompanying sounds to pre-readers. 

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Mother’s Day Ideas

Mother’s Day is right around the corner! LPLS is here to help you show mom how much you care. Celebrate her special day with delicious brunch recipes, homemade gift ideas and even special flicks celebrating the women in our lives. All of these resources are available in our eLibrary.

It’s Time for Brunch

Indulge mom with a lazy morning and breakfast in bed. These cookbooks provide a variety of simple and scrumptious recipes. Just be sure to do the dishes. Moms everywhere will thank you.

All-Time Best Brunch compiled by America’s Test Kitchen: Host a brilliant brunch for mom without the hassle. This scrupulously tested recipe collection features inventive takes on brunch classics, helpful make-ahead options, and easy approaches to finicky favorites. These recipes are sure to impress.

America’s Test Kitchen Pancakes and Waffles compiled by America’s Test Kitchen: There’s nothing like waking up to the best pancakes or waffles you’ve ever tasted. Any one of these recipes from America’s Test Kitchen will guarantee that mom has a memorable morning.

Breakfast in Bed by Carol Frieberg: Start mom’s day off right with breakfast in bed! Choose from over 130 delicious recipes featuring scones, muffins, pancakes, waffles, French toast, eggs and croissants.

The Brunch Cookbook by Faith Moser: Help celebrate mom’s special day with these simple and scrumptious recipes! This all-brunch cookbook is full of fresh ideas for traditional favorites. The book includes hot and cold aperitifs, scrumptious muffins and much more.

DIY Gift Ideas for Mom

These Creativebug tutorials provide you with step-by-step instructions for creating memorable gifts for mom. With tutorials on card making, paper flowers, jewelry making, sewing and much more, you’re sure to find something perfect for mom! Still need more inspiration? We’ve got you covered. Hoopla provides you with instant access to craft books, cookbooks and much more.

Flower Fold Pop-up Card: Learn how to transform cardstock into a pop-up card that is sure to impress mom’s everywhere.

Kids Sewing: Infinity Scarf: Beginning sewers will learn how to create a cute all-season scarf—a perfect accessory for mom.

Make Tissue Paper Pompoms: Paper pompoms bring a colorful and textured floral touch to any celebration, especially weddings and parties. In this class, Courtney demonstrates how to create a gorgeous, oversized pompom from tissue paper, and also gives ideas for customizing color, shape and size.

Mother’s Day Gifts by Anastasia Suen: Browse through a variety of easy to follow Mother’s Day gift ideas that are ideal for children.

Mason Jar Craft for Kids by Linda Z. Braden: Browse a collection of fun and creative Mason jar crafts that include everything from delicious edible treats to home decor and gifts for the whole family.

Paper Pinwheels: Learn how to make fabulous paper pinwheels that will bring a smile to any mom’s face.

Shrinky Dink Jewelry: Kiddos can create original and wearable works of art for mom with shrinkable plastic.

Movies Celebrating Mom

Have mom sit back and relax with a movie from our Kanopy collection.

The Farewell: In this funny, heartfelt story, Billi’s family returns to China under the guise of a fake wedding to stealthily say goodbye to their beloved matriarch—the only person that doesn’t know she only has a few weeks to live.

My Old Lady: When Mathias arrives at the sumptuous Parisian apartment he inherited from his father, he’s surprised that the property comes with two stubborn live-in tenants, Mathilde and Chloe who are not required to leave according to an ancient French real estate law.

The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio: The true story of one woman’s effort to keep her family afloat under difficult circumstances comes to the screen in this bittersweet comedy drama.

Terms of Endearment: Widow Aurora Greenway and her daughter, Emma, have a strong bond, but Emma marries teacher Flap Horton against her mother’s wishes. When the marriage grows sour due to Flap’s cheating, Emma eventually splits from him, returning to her mother and soon learns some devasting news.

Tortilla Soup: Three grown sisters, Maribel, Leticia and Carmen try to cope and live with the fact that their father Martin, a veteran chef, is slowly losing his sense of taste. A rift in the family develops when the sisters develop relationships and an obnoxious woman sets her sights on Martin’s affections.

To all moms out there, thank you for all you do! Feel free to reach out to us at if you need help accessing any of these resources. Which are you going to try first?

Let us know in the comments below!

Our Favorite eLibrary Resources for Students and Virtual Learning

Happy Monday! To celebrate National Library Week, we want to feature some of our favorite eLibrary resources for kids. Rainy day? Stuck indoors? Social distancing? (All of the above?)  These resources are sure to trigger a smile. Better yet, they are fun, engaging and educational—perfect additions to virtual learning.    

Scholastic’s BookFlix is an online literacy resource that pairs classic video storybooks with related nonfiction eBooks. These titles are broken down into broad categories such as animals and nature, earth and sky, people and places, etc. These online books are ideal for preschoolers through third-graders. BookFlix offers a read-aloud feature so that even prereaders can enjoy these stories. There are also fun comprehension games to help build vocabulary and comprehension.

Hoopla lets you borrow free eBooks, comic books, audiobooks, music digital movies and TV shows for all ages. Gain access to thousands of titles that are available for instant streaming or temporary download on your Apple or Android device. Best of all, there’s never a waiting list! Hoopla does not have licensing limits, so multiple people or families can check out the same eBook or audiobook simultaneously. This resource is perfect for book clubs and school assignments. You can select Kids Mode to view child-friendly content. For prereaders, Hoopla provides a read-aloud format so children can listen to a story. To promote early literacy, each word is highlighted as it’s read aloud by the narrator. You can check out up to ten items each month and your checkouts reset at the beginning of each month. We have temporarily increased the checkout limit to 20 items. Happy browsing!

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