Diaries and Postcards

I have a terrible secret.  I have, under my bed, a stash of abandoned journals.  They always start out so strong and hopeful, six pages filled with dreams and ideas, of fears and questions, of tiny epiphanies and huge sighs.  And then, nothing.  Blank pages.  Silence.

The idea of writing for my self has never taken me very far.  Something deep in me wants an audience.  When I send off poetry or essays to literary journals, when I write in my private blog, when I labor on the novel I keep returning to – there’s the possibility of a reader (or maybe even a few).  Is that egotistical?  Maybe.  It’s certainly fueled by ego. But it’s what gets my pencil moving (or fingers typing). 

Maybe it’s the same for you?

Imagine a young woman, your descendant, 100 years from now, stumbling upon a dusty crate in the attic.  The lock has broken over the years, and she lifts the creaking lid to discover… a diary a diary you wrote during the outbreak of 2020. 

What will she learn about you?  About the way life was before the virus?  About the changes that are taking place? 

If, like me, journaling for your self has never been enough to motivate a daily commitment, maybe the thought of your grandchildren, great-grandchildren, historians or anthropologists eventually reading your words is just the kick you need.  And, writing for others forces you to clarify things you might not feel the need to explain when you’re writing for your eyes only.  Who is Uncle Andy?  Should you describe the empty playground? Why are you happy you won’t see Janice at work for the next few weeks?

Some of you may take this idea and fly with it, but others might prefer to have someone reading their thoughts, not 100 years from now, but next week.  For you, writing postcards may be just the thing.  Postcrossing is a service that allows you to “send postcards and receive postcards back from random people around the world.”  The service is safe and free (well, except for buying the cards and stamps, a wonderful way to help our struggling postal system).

Perfect for children, postcards aren’t so demanding.  They have limited space, and once you finish writing one, you get to mail it off and imagine the recipient reading your words.  How cool is that? 

And, as luck would have it, it’s National Card and Letter Writing Month!

What do you write on a postcard to a stranger?  Anything you want!  You can keep with the diary/journal theme and tell them a little about what’s going on in your life right now, or you can send them a bit of kindness, a drawing of the flowers in your front garden or a promise that we’ll all get through this bleak time and emerge into something better.  You can describe the town of Sharon or send your favorite recipe for zucchini bread.  You can write a poem, or list your top five bands from 1973, or transcribe your favorite movie quote.  Anything at all. 

How far will your words travel?  And whose words will come back to you?

Stay safe,

Poetry and Journaling Resources for 4/13/2020

We’re nearly halfway through National Poetry Month, and it seems like a good time to offer some poetry resources. 

Favorite Poem Project
This is, perhaps, my favorite poetry resource of all time, and I’ve sifted through many, many, many.  Boston University’s Favorite Poem Project is a collection of well-produced videos showcasing everyday people reading their favorite poems and talking about why those poems are so meaningful to them.  A construction worker relates how he found encouragement in Whitman’s “Song of Myself,” a student from South Boston discusses how the teens of Gwendolyn Brooks’ poem “We Real Cool” mirror today’s young people who find themselves victims of the opioid crisis, a computer science professor shows us how he uses Robert Frost’s poem “For Once, Then, Something” as inspiration when he feels stuck….  Why does poetry matter?  These videos answer that question in so many ways.

The Social Distancing Reading Series
The Green Mountains Review presents a new reading each Wednesday and Sunday.

You’ve heard of NaNoWriMo?  National Novel Writing Month (November) has gotten a lot of press over the years.  But poets have their own month, too, and we’re smack dab in the middle  it!  A poem a day for 30 days.  Today is day 13, but, you can start your own NaPoWriMo any time (and doesn’t the current stay-at-home order seem tailor-made for budding writers?).  Just commit to a poem each day for 30 days.  You can use the NaPoWriMo site for daily prompts (just start on day 1 of any year and work your way to day 30).

Perhaps, one of your NaPoWriMo poems would be a perfect fit for The Academy of American Poets. They’re using the hashtag #ShelterInPoems to invite readers to share poems that help them find courage, solace or energy — and a few words about why.

And, speaking of writing during the stay-at-home order….

Telling Our Stories in the Age of COVID-19
We’re living in a unique and disquieting time.  There’s a lot of fear, a lot of questions, and, for many of us, a lot of reflection.   Journaling can help us put it all into perspective.  Keeping a daily journal can bring our focus back to what truly matters.  It can offer insight and clarity, reduce stress, and bring us back to the moment.  If you’d like to share your journal entries with others, check out Telling Our Stories.  Here’s their website description: “To join our storytelling community, simply sign up and look for daily journal links in your e-mail. Add journal entries daily or simply as often as you can. Use the journal to share what you are noticing, witnessing, feeling, longing for, and experiencing. The project will continue until it is clear that we are on the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic. When we are all done, we will put together a snapshot of stories from everyone who visited that will go to everyone who participated. No participant names or other identifying information will be included in any publications from this project.  Write daily or a few times a week, post pictures or stick with text, share anything you are noticing – there are no rules. Just come share your story and know that we are in this together.” 

Also, if you’re able to read stories at The New York Times, The Quarantine Diaries is a wonderful article about journaling during the pandemic.

And, before I go, I want to remind you about ArtisTree’s weekly Exploring Self through Expressive Arts for teens.  This is a peer-led Zoom group that meets for 90-minutes Mondays at 5:00 and allows high school students to discover creativity in a variety of art modalities found at home. No experience necessary, just openness to finding creative things to connect with while in quarantine.  Anyone interested can email Ben Fox to be sent the Zoom meeting link.

Here’s to a wonderful, wonder-filled week. 

Stay safe, stay well, and stay kind,

The Little Things

Hello, library friends,

I don’t know if the same is true for you, but I feel overloaded. Overwhelmed. Like a string stretched taut.  I feel like nothing I’m doing is enough.  And then, I open up the library’s Facebook page and stumble over a poem that’s making the rounds.  A poem that feels like it’s been written just for me.  I don’t know for certain who the author is, but it’s credited to Elena Mikhalkova.  Mikhalkova appears to be a popular Russian writer of detective and thriller novels.  Or, maybe it’s someone with the same name.  I was able to find the poem written in Russian, but I’m still not certain of its origin (though it does seem to have been written recently).  In any case, the sentiment feels so good, so necessary right now, that I wanted to offer it here. 

The Room of Ancient Keys
by Elena Mikhalkova

Grandma once gave me a tip:

During difficult times,
you move forward in small steps.
Do what you have to do, but little by little.
Don’t think about the future,
not even what might happen tomorrow.
Wash the dishes.
Take off the dust.
Write a letter.
Make some soup.
Do you see?
You are moving forward step by step.
Take a step and stop.
Get some rest.
Compliment yourself.
Take another step.
Then another one.
You won’t notice, but your steps will grow
bigger and bigger.
And time will come
when you can think about the future
without crying.
Good morning.

It’s difficult to slow down, isn’t it?  Our whole lives, we’ve been taught to run, to reach, to grasp, and never ever to stop.   Now, there’s nothing to reach for.  So, we create things to reach for – redecorating the house until we could invite Martha Stewart to tea, writing the long-dreamt-of novel, starting an Internet-based side business selling homemade whatsits, designing and building the backyard shed, cooking complicated gourmet meals and posting the perfectly-lit photos on Instagram….  But wait – is this really the time? 

Like an army of Atlases, we’re all carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders right now.  Should we really be piling on more?  Should we be giving ourselves an opportunity to feel guilty for not getting enough done?  For many of us, no one else is expecting all that much of us, right now.  No one but ourselves.  There’s no race, but we can’t seem to stop running.  Maybe, just for the moment, taking care of ourselves and our loved ones is enough.  Maybe, homemade gnocchi with sage butter sauce and a spicy beet salad with black tea dressing isn’t really any better than a simple, nourishing soup.  Maybe, we don’t need to prepare for Martha’s visit.  Facetiming with far-away loved ones doesn’t require deep cleaning the drapes and creating centerpieces out of birchbark.  Maybe, we can give ourselves a break.  Just for now.

Just for now, turn off the news.  Just for now, focus on something small.  Make the bed.  Take the dog for a walk.  Water the houseplants.  Journal.  And then, let yourself feel at ease.  You’re okay.  Right now, in this moment, you’re okay.  And your houseplants are okay, too. 

I miss you all, and I hope we can all meet back at the library very soon.

Stay well,

P.S. I know I promised resources on writing, and those are forthcoming (really!), but today’s post just bubbled to the top. 

Science Resources for 4/9/2020

Today, for the curious among us, I have a plethora of science-y links.  The first is a site that I can spend hours wandering through.  The article titles are all so interesting that they’re almost like click bait – except when you click on them, they really do deliver.  It’s How Stuff Works a site brimming with articles, videos and podcasts about… well, nearly everything. No, it’s not all science, but there’s certainly a lot that is. Want to know the difference between mitosis and meiosis? Maybe you’re wondering how viruses work or why school buses don’t have seat belts (not science, but it caught my attention – eight states mandate them, but Vermont isn’t one). You’re in the right place.  This is one site where I have to give myself a time limit.  

Here are a few science sites aimed at kids:

Ology – Biodiversity, physics, paleontology, climate change, and much more – all for kids! Check out the videos, play the games, try your hand at the activities, and learn something amazing!

Science News for Students – Articles highlighting ongoing research in fields ranging from astronomy to zoology. Stories are reported by experienced science journalists, many with PhDs in the fields on which they write. There are also experiments to perform, a series that explores cool STEM jobs, and articles highlighting the intersection of science and fiction.

And, now for a grab bag of NASA sites!  NASA has had a long, strong web presence, and their sites tend to be engaging and fun.  First is NASA’s main site, NASA.gov.  Here, you can find live streams from the International Space Station, NASA at Home videos and activities, audio podcasts, dozens of apps to download (want to take a selfie of yourself floating through space?), image galleries, even NASA TV.

Next are some of NASA’s many sites for kids:

Climate Kids by NASA – Launched in 2010, NASA’s Climate Kids website tells the story of our changing planet through the eyes of the NASA missions studying Earth. Targeting upper-elementary-aged children, the site is full of games, activities and articles that make climate science accessible and engaging.

NASA eClips – eClips brings together exciting video segments and resources to inspire and educate students to become 21st Century explorers by introducing them to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) concepts and providing teachers with engaging resources and tools to support teaching and learning. 

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory – DIY STEM projects, video tutorials, games, links, and more

NASA Kids Club –  games of various skill levels for children pre-K through grade 4

NASA Space Place –  NASA Space Place’s mission is to inspire and enrich upper-elementary-aged kids’ learning of space and Earth science online through fun games, hands-on activities, informative articles and engaging short videos. 

NASA STEM Engagement – Activities and opportunities selected by NASA STEM experts

Have fun exploring!  Next up?  Poetry and writing!  Stay tuned….

Be well,

Resources for 4/8/2020

Welcome to another day of social distancing and (for most of us) staying at home!  I have several fun links for you this morning!  This year, Billings Farm has made their Baby Farm Animal Celebration virtual – and FREE!  What else? Well, you can learn at home with PBS, find your voice by reading Shakespeare, listen to radio stations from around the world, and learn how to knit your very own Weasley scarf!

Billings Farm and Museum
This weekend is the annual Baby Farm Animal Celebration – online!
Get up close with the farm’s baby animals through videos, photos and downloadable activities, including making natural egg dye for your Easter eggs! Virtually meet and learn about the farm’s calves, lambs, steers, goats, bunnies and chicks. You can already watch the eggs in their online stream, and you might get to see a chick hatch!  Today, though, Museum Educator Christine Scales will preview the Baby Farm Animal Celebration and answer your questions about the baby animals at 1:00 PM EST during their new Facebook Live series, “Ask Billings Farm Live.”  (A recording of the event will be available.) And don’t forget that Billings also provides daily “Bag of Fun” kits and videos featuring book readings, farmhouse tours and virtual visits with the farm animals. 

Harry Potter at Home
I think this might be the perfect time to reread the Harry Potter series.  Is anyone with me?  Harry Potter at Home is a free online collection of child-friendly activities, videos, puzzles, illustrations, quizzes, creative ideas, articles and much more, that will help you bring the magic of the wizarding world into your home. (Want to knit that Weasley scarf I mentioned earlier? Check out the video tutorial.)

Radio Garden
Do you enjoy flipping through radio stations?  How about spinning a globe with your eyes shut?  Well, then, this will be a treat!  Radio Garden is a non-profit Dutch radio and digital research project developed from 2013 to 2016 by the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision.  You can use it on your desktop, or download the Apple or Android app onto your phone or tablet.  Then, just spin the globe and see where you end up?  Norwegian pop?  Russian talk radio?  Up-tempo Tanzanian?  Cambodian punk?  Jamaican gospel?  There are more than 8000 stations registered all over the world.

Find Your Voice Through Shakespeare Workshop
Join Peter Gould, creator of the popular Get Thee to the Funnery Shakespeare Camp, and Find Your Voice Through Shakespeare in a free interactive workshop via Zoom on Friday, April 10 at 3:00 pm.  As a childhood stutterer, Peter Gould turned to Shakespeare to find his voice and build confidence; he now shares his methods through his popular Get Thee to the Funnery Camp. In this online interactive workshop, participants will learn how to look through words, add punctuation, leap over line endings, and use breath and focus to bring new life to immortal words. No previous theater training necessary. Sit and watch, or dive right in. Sign up here.

PBS At Home Learning
While school is out, PBS is showing educational programming with accompanying interactive lessons and suggested activities at their website.  Vermont PBS Main Channel will offer programming starting each weekday at 7:00 a.m. with programs for pre-K to 8th grade students.  Vermont PBS Plus Channel will offer science, history and English language arts programming for students in grades 6 through 12.  Both channels are broadly available on all cable systems, and available for free over the air through a digital antenna without the need for cable subscription or broadband internet access.

Stay well, everyone, and we’ll make it through this – together.


Home Education in the Time of Coronavirus

(Apologies to Gabriel García Márquez)

Dear Library Friends,

We live in interesting times.  Curse or not, it’s our new reality, at least for the foreseeable future, and we’re each trying to make the best of it, in our own ways.  We’re learning how to be with each other (and without each other).  We’re learning how to occupy ourselves and our children in new ways.  We’re taking on new and different work responsibilities, or else we’re learning to live with being un- or under-employed.  And many of us are also learning how to take charge of our children’s education – at a time when our children are also struggling to adjust to this same new reality. 

Home education isn’t easy, but it can be simple.  I know because I’ve been there.  In addition to homeschooling my now-22-year-old son from kindergarten through his senior year, I also published a magazine on home education. 

That’s how I can say that, without a scrap of doubt, you can do this.  It will take some getting used to, sure, but I know you can do it.  And I’m here to help in any way I can.

First, you should know that, in the home education community, it’s well understood that, when a child leaves school to begin homeschooling, there’s a period of time when very little that resembles learning takes place.  It’s a period known as “deschooling” or “decompressing.”   For some children, this might take a few weeks; for others, a few months.  Don’t worry.  It will pass.  Be gentle and provide guidance and learning opportunities, but try to abstain from forcing too much.  Remember, our children are experiencing the same upheaval to their lives that we are, and stress simply isn’t conducive to learning.  Be patient.

Second, don’t feel like you have to be an expert at everything.  You don’t.  Instead of always teaching, sometimes homeschooling is learning along with your children.   Learning with kids shows them that learning never ends.  We’re always learning new things – from the moment we’re born until the moment we die.  It also allows children to see learning in action.  We can model how to learn – perhaps the most critical skill of all.  

Third, make learning fun Endless worksheets and quizzes may fill time but may also make your job harder down the road.  Children thrive on novel experiences.  (We all do, really.)  If things get too samey, children are likely to push back and eventually refuse.  Instead, find fun ways to learn – together.  Consider allowing a child’s interest to fuel their learning (there’s math in knitting and baking and playing piano, there’s history in Greek/Egyptian/Norse mythology, there’s English in writing a letter to a pen pal, there’s science in growing a garden…).  If this sounds like something you’d like to try, and you’re wondering how to work with a particular interest, please let me know.  That’s what a librarian is for, after all.

Fourth, talk.  A lot.  It’s amazing how everyday conversation, seen in a different light, is actually learning.  Talk all day long.  About everything.

And finally, don’t worry that it’s all on you, that, if you fail at this homeschooling thing, you’ll scar your child for life.  It’s a common fear, but an unnecessary one.  I’ll leave you with something I wrote years ago for the magazine:

“So, you’re not his teacher, then….”

Well, yes I am. He learns many, many things from me. He asks me questions, he discusses things with me, he debates me. We talk. A lot. I bring him things I think will interest him. I keep an eye out for books, movies, websites, articles, games, magazines, exhibits, and people to feed his passions. He assumes I will do these things for him. He knows I will use the power I have as an adult to make the world more accessible to him. Yes, I am his teacher.

But, so is every person he meets, the neighborhood pool, our community, the pets we own, the Internet, the books he reads, the artwork he sees, every insect that catches his interest, the music that surrounds him, trees, television, dirt, stores, every place he visits, everything he notices.

Teachers are everywhere. In fact, my son, himself, is a teacher – an amazing, inspiring teacher.

Remember, you can do this.  And if you have any questions, any nagging worries, any anything, really, I’m here.  And so are all the other parents treading these unfamiliar waters.  You are not alone. It takes a community to raise a child, and the community of Sharon, though mostly virtual at the moment, is brimming with people ready and happy to help.

Stay safe, stay kind, and stay well,

Jigsaw & Origami Resources for 4/4/2020

Looking for a calming activity to counteract the turbulence that so often feels inescapable?  Try putting together a jigsaw puzzle.  You can sit happily for hours scanning pieces for the perfect fit, the world beyond your kitchen table forgotten.  Doesn’t it sound blissful?  Of course, these days, when we’re stuck indoors, puzzles may not be easy to come by.  Enter the online jigsaw.  Though I’ve seen advertisements for them for years, I hadn’t tried one until yesterday, and I’ll admit, I didn’t have high hopes.  Well, I was pleasantly surprised. 

Norwich resident Cynthia Crawford has long taken beautiful photographs of local birds and made them into calendars, but now she’s offering several as free online puzzles.  I pieced together the red-winged blackbird and found that, while my brain was happily engaged in the search for the right piece, my stress just fell away.  By the time I was finished, it was gone. 

I’ve always thought that online jigsaws must be buggy and frustrating, but that wasn’t the case, at all.  The puzzles were made with an application called Jigsaw Explorer, a site filled with thousands of beautiful puzzles, all available for free.  You can even create your own!  You decide how difficult each puzzle will be by choosing the number of pieces and whether the pieces have the ability to rotate. 

This was my first foray into the world of online jigsaw puzzles, but it certainly won’t be the last.

Another great stress reliever?  Paper folding.  Sure, you can fold a dollar bill into a heart or create a cootie catcher, but what if you’re ready for more?  Well, the Origami Resource Center has you covered.  This site aggregates tutorials from all over the web to show you how to fold baskets, animals, stars – you name it.  You can even fold precious toilet paper into beautiful works of art – without ever taking it off the roll!  Looking for kid-friendly tutorials?  Why not try watching some of the Easy Origami for Kids videos?  Or, visit Origami-Instructions.com (I like their addition of dotted lines to show where to fold.)

I’ll add these links to the Resource Center.  Hopefully, with all this folding and piecing, we’ll all feel a bit more relaxed this weekend.

Stay safe, stay well, and stay kind,

The Haudenosaunee & Resources for 4/2/2020

I spent some time today searching out resources for a boy who wants to learn about Native Americans – particularly the Haudenosaunee/Iroquois Confederacy.  I had such fun finding links, and though I’m not finished by any stretch, I thought, why not share what I’ve found with everyone? 

Extra History has a two-part video (Part One, Part Two) on Hiawatha and the formation of the Haudenosaunee/Iroquois Confederacy that’s actually pretty good.  The videos are sponsored by a game called Dominations, but the plug for them only lasts for a few seconds toward the beginning of the first video.    

PBS produced a video that covers some of the same information but comes at it from a more story-like, almost mythical, perspective.  The imagery is a bit darker than in the Extra History videos and might be worth a parental-preview to see if it’s suitable before showing it to children.

Here’s a great video of a dynamic presenter at a middle school talking about whether to use the term Iroquois or Haudenosaunee. 

Here’s one on the Haudenosaunee creation myth.  Every video I looked at told of a different reason for Sky Woman’s fall, but I thought this one was extremely well produced.  

And now, it’s time for today’s resources!  These have been added into the slowly-evolving Resource Center.  Yes, it’s changed again.  I finally discovered how to create separate pages for the four different types of resources and gather them under the same umbrella.  (In case you haven’t yet guessed, I tend to bumble my way around WordPress until things look, well, sorta okay.  It takes a while, but it’s probably somewhat entertaining for anyone watching.) I also added icons to show off local resources (there’s one below).

The first resource is great fun, and I probably spent a little too much time scrolling and laughing.  The Getty Museum has challenged those of us at home to recreate great works of art, and their Twitter feed is filled with both silly and surprisingly spot-on examples.  What work of art can you recreate?

And now for the kids:

ArtisTree Community Arts Center – ArtisTree in Woodstock, VT has created a YouTube Channel with art projects, including a reading of Frederick by Leo Lionni followed by collage creation inspired by the illustrations!

Fingerprint Alphabet Art – What a cute art project!  Use your fingerprint to create a picture for every letter of the alphabet: dogs and jellyfish and unicorns – oh, my!

Stay well, everyone!

National Poetry Month & Resources for 4/1/2020

Happy National Poetry Month, everyone!  Did you know that in one of my previous lives, I wrote poetry – lots of poetry?  I even spent a few years in a creative writing graduate program!  And though I usually find myself writing other things these days, poetry will always be my first true love.   What is there to love about poetry?  For me, there’s almost nothing more satisfying than playing with words, with the sounds they make and the images and feelings they elicit.  Getting them into just the right order, taking away the ones that aren’t necessary, finding the perfect words to recreate what I’m feeling or seeing or thinking – for me, poetry is like a puzzle.

The Academy of American Poets has created a page detailing 30 Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month at Home or Online (updated for today’s virtual world).  When you get to number three, watch this video, instead.  Naomi Shihab Nye has always been one of my favorite poets, and this is one of her most beautiful poems.  Her work is simple and heartfelt.  I’ve met her twice, and each time, I felt as if I were a teenager meeting a rock star.

In other news, Green Up Day has been postponed until May 30. Can you believe Green Up Day has been going strong for 50 years?  To celebrate the occasion, they’ll be providing a “birthday box” to each town.  The box will include a maple tree sapling and a granite plaque to plant in a community location, a free birthday cake coupon from Shaw’s, wildflower seeds, and a few other goodies for the town to share!

Now on to today’s resources – all for kids (and the young at heart, of course)!

BookFlix from Scholastic – What a fun site!  BookFlix pairs picture book videos with related nonfiction ebooks (that you can either read, or follow along with as they’re read to you), then adds puzzles and games.  Highly recommended for those learning to read!

Tate Kids – The Tate Museum in London has created an incredibly cool art website for kids filled with games, videos, activities, silly quizzes, and much more!  THIS is an awesome resource.

Stimola Live is a website of live stream events (storytimes, art starters, craft and illustration tutorials, writing workshops, etc.) for kids, tweens, and teens by professional authors and illustrators who are represented by Stimola Literary Studio agency.  Events are streamed live from a variety of platforms and archived on the site, as well as on the Stimola Live YouTube Channel.


Remember, you can email me with any questions you have about anything I post – or about anything at all, really!  My job is to help you figure stuff out.  If there is something you’re trying to figure out, let me know, and I’ll see if I can be of any help. Or, if there’s something your kiddo wants to learn but you have no idea where to begin, send me an email! Just think of me as your friendly reference librarian.  As always, stay safe, stay well, and stay kind, and hopefully, we can see each other again very soon!


Tomie dePaola & Resources for 3/31/2020

It’s a sad day in library land.  Tomie dePaola has died.  I remember reading The Knight and the Dragon with my son over and over (and over) when he was young.   We never owned any of the Strega Nona books, but we checked them out from the library often enough.  Tomie lived just down the road in New London, NH, but his books spread joy across the world.  In a Tomie dePaola mood?  Watch this incredible storytime with Mary Steenburgen reading Strega Nona (and playing her accordion)!

Looking for more storytimes? 

Maple Sugaring Storytime – Yes, it’s that time of year!  Check out this incredibly sweet storytime from the Joslin Memorial Library in Waitsfield. Oliver Jeffers’ Stuck and maple sugaring – lots of fun on a rainy day!

Save with Stories is a collection of celebrities reading children’s stories on Instagram. These are filmed, often with cell phones, in celebrities’ homes during the pandemic. There’s a lot here, but why not start with Jeff Goldblum reading Horton Hears a Who?

How about The Big List of Children’s Authors Doing Online Read-Alouds & Activities from We Are Teachers?  Oliver Jeffers, Kate Messner, Grace Lin – and many more!

And a storytime for the older crowd?  Patrick Stewart Reads a Daily Shakespearean Sonnet.  A sonnet a day keeps the doctor away. That’s the phrase, right?

Other Resources

There’s also another repository of children’s ebooks that has been made free: ABDO Books – ABDO has three different online digital accounts: one each for PreK–6 readers and 5–12 grade readers, and a third account for their four Abdo Zoom online databases that include Biographies, STEAM, Animals, and Animales (Animals in Spanish).

Here’s a fun one for older kids: The Learning Network by The New York Times publishes about 1,000 teaching resources each school year, all based on Times content — articles, essays, images, videos, graphics and podcasts. Most of the resources are free (only the lesson plans are limited to five per month for nonsubscribers).

And finally, Amazon has unlocked dozens of shows and movies for kids, including all their PBS Kids shows (Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, anyone?).

Stay safe, stay well, and stay kind,