October 2013

7 Kid Tips for a Spook-tacular Halloween

by On October 28, 2013 in Childrens Books, Holidays, Reading

Halloween is almost here! Credit: Diana Dull Akers

Halloween is almost here!
Credit: Diana Dull Akers

It’s that time of year: pumpkins appearing on doorsteps, costume shops popping up?everywhere, giant bags of candy filling grocery store aisles. I don’t know about your kids, but my six-year old is climbing the walls waiting for Halloween.

To pass the time, I asked Hope if she had any tips for having a happy Halloween that she’d like to share with Bookboard families. You bet your broomstick she did!

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When “Awesome!” Comments Mean A Lot

by On October 24, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading

Last night at bedtime, Hope and I read three books together: a school library book about the liberty bell, and two Bookboard titles.? As her e-book library loaded on the screen, Hope quietly offered this unsolicited comment:

“I think Bookboard is awesome.”

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Teaching Kids With Sports-Themed Books

by On October 21, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading


These days I think of a children’s book as serving helpful double-duty if the story not only engages my six-year old beginning reader, but also helps her in other areas like beginning math skills.

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Should libraries still be quiet places?

by On October 17, 2013 in General, Reading

I’m a major fan of libraries, but last week I left one in a huff.

It was my first time sitting in a children’s library, literally shouting a story to my daughter to be heard over the din.?Children yelled and played chase. Parents barked admonishments or ignored their kids. People talked loudly on cell phones. Toddlers banged blocks in the play area. High-pitched, “that’s SO adorable!” baby shower comments came from the adjacent community room.

We moved to an adult reading area, yet it wasn’t much better.

7598485414I’m happy that libraries are serving communities in increasingly diverse ways, offering classes, meeting spaces, kids’ programs and community events.? But I find myself lamenting what one writer called “the lost library voice.”

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School Birthdays: 4 Reasons to Choose Books over Baked Goods

by On October 14, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading

Kids school parties often showcase sugar. Credit: Diana Dull Akers

Kids school parties often showcase sugar. Credit: Diana Dull Akers

Here’s how to make your first-grader frown. Read to them from their teacher’s Welcome Booklet, specifically the policy on how birthdays will be celebrated. Here’s the passage that left my kid pouting:

In accordance with the district’s new Health and Wellness Policy, we will not be celebrating with treats in class. We will honor your child’s special day with a crown, sign and a class-made birthday book. Your child may also bring in a birthday book and donate it in honor of his/her special day to our classroom library. What a great “treat” for us all!

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Adventures in Reading with Kids: The “Food Chain” Lesson

by On October 10, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading

In the early 60s when my husband and I were kids, we enjoyed a show called Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom. Hosted by zoologist Marlin Perkins, the program showcased wild animals from around the globe, doing their natural thing in their natural habitats.

Things would get interesting when the show depicted realities of “the food chain.” Mom covered her eyes warning, “Kids, look away!” Dad teased: “no, kids, watch the good part!” Whether we peeked or not, we learned a sad fact of nature: that gazelle was now the cheetah’s dinner.

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Overdue books: How Bookboard helps this repeat offender

by On October 7, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading

Image credit: jppi, morguefile.com. http://mrg.bz/cF32Er

Image credit: jppi, morguefile.com. http://mrg.bz/cF32Er

It began in childhood. I’d return books on time to the library, only to come home and find more library books behind pillows and tucked in drawers. More commonly, I’d simply miss the due date for an entire stack of checked-out books. I incurred lots of fines. My parents were not pleased.

In my adulthood, I’ve only improved a smidgen.

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Kids’ Reviews: Check out Zoe’s 5-Star Picks!

by On October 3, 2013 in Childrens Books, General, Reading

So here’s the deal.?My daughter Hope has adored writing her “Happy Star Book Reviews” for your kids. She also adores her cousin, Zoe. But when Zoe wanted to do some Bookboard reviews, too, this gave Hope pause.

Zoe's review #1. Photo credit: Diana Dull Akers

It took some spirited negotiations (Hope: “OK, you can do the reviews, but you can’t use my star-strip! Hey! Give it back! Mom!!”)?It involved squabbling over the necessity of a tutorial from Hope (Zoe: “I already know how to use Bookboard! I have it at my house!”)

In the end, Hope observed while Zoe did two great reviews, her five-star picks coming from our Back-to-School bookshelf below. And yes, the cousins are still speaking.

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