At the Library: Children's books can be for all ages

At the Library: Children's books can be for all ages

Any parent of young children can tell you that reading aloud to them has a wealth of benefits (so much so that some parents begin when the baby is still in utero!). From encouraging language and cognitive development, to increasing vocabulary and teaching book-handling skills — the list goes on and on. It can also be an enjoyable activity for the caregiver; here, I stress the words “can be.” Anyone who has read the same Paw Patrol book five times a night for the past two months may not regard it so favorably. That being said, there are tons of books out there that appeal to parents as well as children! Check out a few of my (and my daughter’s) favorites.

You may be familiar with Jimmy Fallon from “The Tonight Show,” but did you know that he is also an author? Fallon was so determined to get his daughter to utter “Dada” as her first word that he wrote a whole book about it: “Your Baby’s First Word Will Be Dada.” While this didn’t ultimately work out in his favor (apparently she said “Mama” first, the little rebel), the book was so popular that he followed it up with another: Everything is Mama. Both are short, sweet, and perfect for even the tiniest babies.

Speaking of tiny babies: Despite being only three months old, it’s pretty clear (to me) that my daughter is a genius, light-years ahead of her time, and will someday rule the world. Of course, even if we all believe this of our children, it doesn’t hurt to give them a bit of an academic push early on … right? I’ve been loving the Baby University series by physicist and mathematician Chris Ferrie. Some of his titles include “Newtonian Physics for Babies” and “General Relativity for Babies.” Not only did my daughter enjoy them (even if she hasn’t quite mastered quantum physics), but they even have my husband volunteering to do the nighttime reads. Not too shabby.

When baby is fussy, does he want a toy? A tambourine? What could it be? “What Does Baby Want” by Tupera Tupera was published in 2017 and quickly gained popularity, especially among nursing mothers. The large, circular-shaped board book is aesthetically pleasing to baby, with cheeky humor that is perfect for mom and dad.

There’s also something to be said for good ol’ fashioned favorites. Growing up, I absolutely loved an unassuming book entitled “Amos: The Story of an Old Dog and His Couch,” which I recently discovered is available through the Ocean State Libraries! If you have a long-lost favorite from your younger years, we would be happy to look it up and see if we can get it in for you. In the meantime, check out our large children’s book collection, and attend one of our great Storytimes! The Tuesday Family Storytime will resume in September, but we have multiple other storytime programs throughout the summer.

Top-requested books■1. “The Perfect Couple” Elin Hilderbrand■2. “The President is Missing” by Bill Clinton & James Patterson■3. “The Great Alone” by Kristin Hannah■4. “All We Ever Wanted” by Emily Giffin■5. “The Death of Mrs. Westaway” by Ruth Ware■6. “The Woman in the Window” by A. J. Finn■7. “Shelter in Place” by Nora Roberts■8. “The Summer Wives” by Beatriz Williams■9. “Educated: A Memoir” by Tara Westover■10. “The Other Woman” by Daniel Silva

Top-requested movies■1. “A Quiet Place”■2. “Chappaquiddick”■3. “The Leisure Seeker”■4. “Ready Player One”■5. “Book Club”■6. “Rampage”■7. “I Feel Pretty”■8. “Blockers”■9. “Tully”■10. “Black Panther”

Top billingFor All Ages■MONDAY –– 9:30-10:30 a.m., Book Club: The First Rule of Punk (ages 8-12) – Preregistration is required for participation in this club; 10-11 a.m., Toddler Music (Ages Birth-5) – An interactive music program for parents and kids; 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Free Summer Lunches – There will be free meals for any child under the age of 18; 1-3 p.m., Drop In: Mixtape Mondays – In the Teen Space; 6-7:45 p.m., Shoreline Robotics Practice – For teens interested in STEM and Robotics.■TUESDAY –– 10-11 a.m., Dean Watts: Participatory Martial Arts at Craig Field – A fun introduction to self-defense for kids ages 4-12; 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Free Summer Lunches – Free meal for any child under 18; 2-4 p.m., Animation Nation Club (Ages 8-12) – Preregistration is required; 4-5:30 p.m., Teen Radicle Book Club – Join us to discuss The Radius of Us by Marie Marquardt; 5:30-7:30, Knit & Crochet Club – Bring your project, work on a project with others, or swap yarn and ideas with fellow yarnies; 6-7:45 p.m., Quilters Corner – Bring your current project and join us for a casual and crafty get-together in the Makerspace; 6-6:45 p.m., Meditation Group – Held in the 3rd floor Terrace Room; 6-7:30 p.m., Renaissance Toastmasters of Westerly – Work on your public speaking skills.■WEDNESDAY –– 9:15-10 a.m., Storytime at the Watch Hill Library – For parents and children ages 3+; 10-11 a.m., Warm and Fuzzy Animal Adventures – For children ages 4-12; 10 a.m.-12 p.m., Dungeons and Dragons – A Teen-led program! No experience with the game necessary; 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Free Summer Lunches – Free meal for any child under 18; 1-3 p.m/6-7:30 p.m., Wirework Wednesday – Join us in the Makerspace to try your hand at making wire-wrapped jewelry; 2-3:30 p.m., Teen SRP: Songwriter’s Series Part 2 – Learn basic chord progressions to really get your songwriting flowing; 6:30-7:30 p.m., The Not So Gilded Life of the Gilded Age Wife – Presented by Velya Jancz-Urban of Grounded Goodwife.■THURSDAY –– 10-11 a.m., BJ Whitehouse at Cimalore Field – The Shanteyman presents a program of music, poetry and stories of the sea; 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Storytime at Mel’s Downtime Creamery – Cool off with a fun storytime and a sweet treat; 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Free Summer Lunches – Free meal for any child under 18; 2-3 p.m., Teen SRP: Circus Dynamics – Enjoy a circus variety show followed by an interactive workshop; 3-4:30 p.m., Computer Literacy: Excel Basics – Learn the basics of making and editing spreadsheets; 5:30-7:30 p.m., Chess Club – All ages and experience levels are welcome, no sign-up required; 6-7:30 p.m., Literature of the Sea Series, Registration Required – Retired Navy Academy professor Bob Madison presents this 6-week course on sea literature.■FRIDAY –– 10-11 a.m., Oceans (Ages 6-12) – Learn the mysteries of the oceans, and how we can help protect them; 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Free Summer Lunches – Free meal for any child under 18; 2-3 p.m., Teen SRP: Poetry Circle – Write, share, and snack!■SATURDAY –– 9 a.m.-12 p.m., URI Master Gardener’s Kiosk – Bring any questions, and/or have your soil tested; 10-11:30 p.m., Native Gardens Tour – Meet at the fountain for a walking tour of Wilcox Park; 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Teen Geocache Creation – Create a Geocache treasure to hide in the park; 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m., Adult Writers Workshop – A group-led prose writing workshop.

Cassie Skobrak is a reference librarian at the Westerly Library.


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