Fun books and activities for kids from our children's librarians.

Library Lab: Raspberry Pi Cloud Lamp

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Cameron Myers on Apr 5, 2018

The kids and teens at the Clarendon Branch have been busy building and programming a fantastic cloud lamp! This marvel of math and science was wired by the kids using a breadboard, and coded in Python by the teens using a Raspberry Pi.  Check out these wiz kids in action. . .   Check out these wiz kids in action. . . The cloud lamp goes through a series of animations depicting sunshine, rain, a thunderstorm, overcast skies, and finally a sunset. It was a bit of work programming all the different loops for our LED strip, but it all came together with...

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BPL Kids Present: El día de los niños/El día de los libros

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Kalliopi Mathios & Christina Ferrari on Apr 4, 2018

    At Brooklyn Public Library, we're gearing up for Día celebrations across the borough on or around April 30th. Check our events page for an updated list of Día programs happening in our branch libraries. Día as an acronym stands for Diversity In Action, and aims to celebrate diverse communities and literature.  El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children's Day/Book Day), commonly known as Día, is a celebration every day of children, families, and reading that culminates yearly on April 30. The celebration emphasizes the importance of literacy...

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Kids Create: DIY Block Printing

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Elena Rivera on Mar 21, 2018

Create a fun block print with your little ones while learning about different shapes, patterns and textures. Materials: Cardboard Glue Scissors Paint Paint Brush Paper   Instructions: Divide cardboard into two pieces (you will be using once piece as the base of your design and the second piece as the material for your stamp shapes).  Peel one piece of cardboard to reveal corrugated side. Using your freshly peeled corrugated cardboard, cut out a variety of shapes and arrange and glue on to cardboard base.  You now have made a...

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Library Lab: Spinning Noisemakers

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Brian Muldoon on Mar 19, 2018

These spinning noisemakers are easy to make and will teach young patrons about how different sorts of vibrations can produce different sounds. The kids had a blast making and playing with these during one of my recent Library Lab sessions. It was really cool to see the variations in sound their noisemakers could produce as they experimented with and fine tuned their designs. Some of their noisemakers were so loud!  Just make sure you’ve got plenty of space for the kids to whip their creations around, otherwise it can get a little chaotic. Check out the instructions below!...

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Book Talk: Growl

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Beanbag Amerika on Mar 15, 2018

Here at the BKLYN Kids Blog, we endeavor to post new content every Thursday. The reason that this post is going live just over the wire (it is 12:44am on Friday as I am about to hit "publish") is not entirely because I am a procrastinator, but because it has changed form, changed tone, grown and shrunk a number of times since I started working on it a few weeks ago. It began, when in the lead up to the Academy Awards, I saw an infographic illustrating the percentage of lines in Oscar winning films spoken by men vs those spoken by women. The results are unfortunately not hard to surmise but no...

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Kids Create: Read Across Brooklyn 2018

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Kalliopi Mathios on Mar 6, 2018

On March 2nd, Brooklyn Public Library celebrated Read Across America with a special reading of Edward Gets Messy by BPL's own Rita Meade. Read Across America is an annual initiative of the National Education Assocation to raise awareness and motivation for reading among children of all ages. In cities and towns across the nation, teachers, teenagers, librarians, politicians, actors, athletes, parents, grandparents, and others develop NEA's Read Across America activities to bring reading excitement to children of all ages. Governors, mayors, and other elected officials recognize the role...

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BPL Kids Presents: Black History Month

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Christina Ferrari on Feb 26, 2018

During February, Brooklyn Public Library celebrated Black History Month with a variety of programs for all ages. These programs provided opportunities to learn more about, and celebrate, the important contributions by African Americans to art, literature, science, sports, and pop culture. Here's a look back at some of the wonderful family programs and events offered throughout the Brooklyn Public Library branches this past month: Cortelyou Cortelyou Branch welcomed local author Harriet Hyman Alonso, who read and discussed her new novel for children ages 8-12...

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Library Lab: Engineer Fun with Homemade Catapults

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Kathy Gerber on Feb 20, 2018

Engineer Fun with Homemade Catapults National Engineers Week, Feb 18-24, is a week-long celebration of engineering designed to get children and their families more familiar with the world of engineering. Check out their web site at www.discovere.org for lots of fun activities to make engineering come to life for children. And, consider registering to become a Girl Day Role Model on Thursday, Feb. 22 by planning a fun engineering activity for girls. A perfect activity for engineering week is catapult engineering. We made catapults during a recent Library Lab at Cortelyou Library; not...

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Kids Create: Thankful Tree

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Liz Blake on Feb 14, 2018

  No matter the season, it’s important to remember the many things we have to be thankful for. One of my favorite traditions that has developed over the last couple of years at Cortelyou is creating a seasonal “thankful tree” on the bulletin board in our meeting room, inviting patrons young and old to take a minute to reflect and write down something they are thankful for. This is a passive program and patrons can choose to add to the board whenever they are attending a program in the meeting room. The best part is, it requires minimal effort to create this beautiful...

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Book Talk: Mock Newbery and Caldecott Awards

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Emily Heath on Feb 7, 2018

The Newbery and Caldecott Awards (the "Oscars of the children's book world") are presented annually by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association. The John Newbery Medal was established in 1922, and is given to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children up to the age of fourteen. It has customarily been given to works of fiction for middle-grade readers, but in recent years has been awarded to graphic novels, picture books, works of poetry, and nonfiction as well. The Randolph Caldecott Medal was...

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Read and Play: Teddy Bear Sleepover!

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Eric Horwitz on Jan 30, 2018

There are probably lots of kids who would love to stay overnight at the library. Unfortunately we can't let them, but at the Gerritsen Beach Library we discovered the next best thing. The Teddy Bear Sleepover let kids come over for a pajama party and then leave their stuffed animals behind for a night of fun. The kids came for a storytime and a movie, and then signed "permission slips" for the stuffed animals to stay overnight. We then took pictures of the great night the stuffed animals had. Here's one of them playing ping pong: This Ninja Turtle got hungry and called for pizza...

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Play at the Library

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Jessica Ralli on Jan 17, 2018

A young toddler carefully pokes long glittery pipe cleaners, one after the other, through tiny holes in a large plastic colander.  After he finishes, he places it on his head and screams, delightedly, “HAT!”  Nearby, a group of crawling and rolling babies maneuver around a brightly colored, multi textured surface made of bubble wrap, textured bath mats, towels, and reflective fabric.  They reach for crinkled colorful pieces of cellophane, and brightly colored textured balls. In another corner, seated babies play in a baby pool full of shredded paper, as more...

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Book Talk: Notable Books of 2017

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Emily Heath and Elena Rivera on Dec 21, 2017

  There are books that move us, others that make us laugh and some that provide us with endless inspiration.  As the year is coming to an end our children's librarians look back on some of the most notable books of 2017.  These books show great artistic appeal, are creatively put together and encourage children to explore their interests and relationship with reading.   Younger Readers Before & After by Jean Jullien Graphic artist Jean Jullien cleverly illustrates a series of situations where there is a “before” and “after” and sometimes...

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Over the River: Holiday Bridge Building

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Kathy Gerber on Dec 13, 2017

Do you go over the river to grandmother’s (or another relative’s) house during the holiday season? If so, chances are you will cross at least one, if not several, bridges on your way there. After all, New York City has some 2,000 bridges or tunnels—including pedestrian, car, bike, subway and railroad bridges. Then there are the city’s famous bridges, like the Brooklyn Bridge, which inspires people from around the world to come walk its 1,600 foot span. But bridges are more than just concrete and steel structures that get us from here to there. They connect “people with people, bringing...

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Comic & Manga Fan? Let's test that...

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Cameron Myers on Dec 4, 2017

  The Brooklyn Public Library has a great collection of new comics and manga for kids. But before we get into that, let’s see how much you already know. . .                The Brooklyn Public Library’s Ultimate Comic Trivia Quiz! Loading... Point Breakdown: 0-1 points: Total newb 2-3 points: Budding nerdist 3-4 points: Respectable comic connoisseur 5 points: Ultimate comic maven         Looking for new comics? Here are some our favorites. . ....

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Kids Create: Fall Leaf Rubbings

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Kat Savage on Nov 30, 2017

  "What do you notice about these?" I asked as I laid five leaves on the caterpillar-shaped table. "They're all different colors and shapes," Natalie piped in right away. "Yeah! What else?" "Hm... oh! Different sizes. And some have long stems and some have short stems. And some are wavier." This is how four children, three caregivers, and myself started our leaf rubbing exploration during Kids Create at Red Hook Library on November 9th. We continued to discuss what happens to leaves after they fall -- they sit around, and eventually just disappear! One way to...

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Our friends at Seattle Public Library shared an article which includes a curated list of recommended children’s books by Indigenous authors and illustrators. The list was curated by The Conscious Kid Library and American Indians in Children’s Literature, in partnership with Brooklyn Children’s Museum. The article opens with a statistic that should sound the alarms in children’s publishing offices across the U.S., and shines light on the extreme disparities in Indigenous representation and authorship in children’s books: Only 1% of the children’s books published in the U.S. in 2016...

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Cypress Hills Celebrates Thanksgiving!

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Meghan Oliver on Nov 20, 2017

Thanksgiving began centuries ago as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. When Americans refer to the “First Thanksgiving,” they are typically referring to the three day feast held by the Pilgrims and Native Americans in October 1621. After a treacherous journey across the great ocean aboard the Mayflower, the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, located in Massachusetts. Despite the many hardships they faced, the Pilgrims kept their faith and most survived the first winter, with help from Squanto, a Patuxet Native American who resided with the...

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Kids Create: Choose Kind

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Liz Blake on Nov 15, 2017

Whether you’ve read (and probably fallen in love with) R.J. Palacio’s book Wonder or not, it is easy to get excited about the theme of the book: Choose Kind.  In honor of the release of the movie inspired by the book, libraries all over Brooklyn are celebrating by hosting events meant to inspire our youngest patrons to choose kind. At Cortelyou, our "Choose Kind" program took place during our weekly Kids Create program this week. It was pretty simple and required just a little bit of preparation. Before the program, I made a “Choose Kind” banner for our bulletin board, and also...

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Diwali: Celebrating Light & Color

Posted in BKLYN Kids by Yesha Naik on Nov 6, 2017

Namaste! As we enter this season of dark mornings and nights, now accentuated by the end of Daylight Saving Time, we naturally turn to bright, cheery colors! And what better way to celebrate color and light, than by celebrating Diwali, the Indian Festival of Lights! Traditionally Diwali is the time to celebrate friends and family by exchanging sweets, setting off fireworks, lighting up houses and stores with beautiful bright lights, and decorating doorsteps and courtyards with intricate designs drawn with colored powders, flower petals and rice flour - called rangoli in some...

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