Tag Archives: storytime

Adventures of a Funky Hat Librarian

Balloon Hats Abstract on the guys

(From the ALSC blog, by Emily Bayci)

“One of the best parts (maybe even the best part) of being a children’s librarian is getting to dress up and look ridiculous all of the time. No questions asked. My favorite way to express this? Funky hats.

It all started innocently enough. There were a few hats hanging around at my graduate school and I wore them while working at the help desk. People thought it  was fun and when I found a cool hat
at a store I would end up buying one.

This escalated into a full on obsession. My friend told me how much money you could save by buying a hat for a costume and working your way down. Continue reading Adventures of a Funky Hat Librarian

Supercharge your storytime!

Make the most of storytime

Storytime is a fun and important time in all libraries. In order to get even more out of storytime programs, the Library of Virginia has created 12 new videos on how to “supercharge” your storytime.

They define supercharging storytime as incorporating two main characteristics: intentionality, where they focus on making connections between the storytime activities and early literacy, and interactivity, so both the kids and parents participate and get more out of the program.

You can find more resources, including videos and links to articles, on early childhood literacy expert Saroj Ghoting’s website here.

Learn the basics and benefits of supercharging your storytime by watching this short video:

Signing during storytime – webinar review

macmillan-livenup_300indEarlier this week, I was able to attend an ALA webinar called “Liven up Baby and Toddler Storytimes with Sign Language” presented by Kathy Macmillan. I was excited to learn about this topic because I am hoping to learn to communicate through signing with my own little one at home, but also because I know many of our member libraries work with small kids and thought this could be a fun addition to their storytime routine!

Kathy began the presentation by laying out the multiple benefits of including ASL (American Sign Language) in your library programs. There were a ton! Some of which were: kids are able to sign before they can speak, signing stimulates language development, it reduces frustration, and learning one form of communication encourages more communication in general. Plus, signing is an instant way to get kids to participate!

Continue reading Signing during storytime – webinar review

Orville's Adventure: a slumber party at the library!

Are you looking for a fun library activity to engage youngsters at your library or media center? Last week, CMLE’s own Office Bear Orville was able to participate in a fantastic event at the St. Cloud Public Library – the Stuffed Animal Sleepover!

There is Orville, surrounded by furry friends! (They are wearing superhero capes, just one of the event’s activities!)

Mary was able to represent CMLE at the event, and accompanied Orville as he got to meet the other stuffed friends and their chaperones, heard a story, then had some fun with crafting superhero capes and necklaces. Then it was time to say goodnight to the stuffed animals and leave them for the night, with instructions to “be good!” Library staff then got to work documenting all the mischief the stuffed animals created in the library!

Orville enjoyed playing with legos!

While we have several fun pictures to share with you here, we also have some exciting printed ones at CMLE HQ. Some of these include Orville riding Wally, the huge book sorting machine that is behind the scenes at the library, and also a picture of Orville and assorted friends working together to break into the Executive Director’s office! The printed photos of library shenanigans were distributed to each child when they arrived the next morning to pick up their stuffed friend. The kids got to enjoy a snack while they heard all about the adventures of the previous night, while admiring the picture display set up in the Children’s Department of all the stuffed animals and their troublemaking!


Orville had fun exploring!


He got to make new friends, too!

For the past four years, Dezra Rittmann has brought this awesome event to life, and works very hard to make sure kids and stuffed animals enjoy themselves! She describes it as a very popular program, and it’s easy to see why. In fact, it is so popular that registration is required!

CMLE had so much fun taking part in this event, and we think that it could be a great program for your library, too! Especially with school libraries or media centers – kids would love to see what mischief their stuffed animals get into after the school is closed! Let us know if you need more information, and we can connect you with the right people!

A huge thank-you to Dezra and everyone at the St. Cloud Public Library for letting us participate in your program!

Interested in adding sign language to your storytime? Join CMLE for ALA's webinar!

macmillan-livenup_300indHave you been looking for new ideas to spice up your storytime? Sign language with babies and toddlers can be a fun addition! It encourages participation and can make the experience more interactive and entertaining.

ALA is offering a webinar “Liven Up Baby and Toddler Storytimes with Sign Language Workshop” and CMLE wants to extend an invitation to any interested librarians that may want to participate! If we can get just two additional people that would like to come view this webinar from CMLE Headquarters, we will qualify for the group rate for the workshop, which is $40 instead of $60.

The online workshop is 90 minutes long and begins at 1:30pm on Wednesday, Dec. 7th.

At the completion of this workshop, you will be able to:

  • List 3 benefits of using sign language with young children
  • Describe at least 3 ways to use sign language in baby and toddler storytimes
  • Demonstrate 3 ASL signs appropriate for use in baby or toddler storytimes

You can find more information about the workshop here.

Please contact us if you are interested in joining us!