“Bad libraries build collections, good libraries build services, great libraries build communities.”
– R. David Lankes
(Updated 2021: Be sure to check out more of our favorite books, sorted by category, over at our shop.)
This morning we visited our local library for the weekly Family Story Time. This is a really nice and free service provided to our children in a friendly and engaging atmosphere. It allows kids in our community to gather together, get acquainted with one another and the library staff, and hear an exciting new tale delivered by a librarian or local volunteer. There is also an arts & crafts activity in conjunction with the story for children to participate in afterwards.
Today, the featured book was Urashima and the Kingdom Beneath the Sea by Ralph F. McCarthy. It is a traditional Japanese folk tale about a brave fisherman and has beautiful accompanying illustrations. The book is bilingual, providing English and Japanese text on each page for readers to enjoy. One of the most captivating parts of our experience this morning was having the book read to us by a Japanese woman wearing traditional dress, including an attractive royal blue kimono with floral print. It really added another dimension to the storytelling process, drawing in children and adults alike.
Once the story was complete, parents and staff worked together to assist children in constructing their very own sea turtle to take home, made from colored popsicle sticks, yarn, and construction paper. Then, both my son and daughter spent some time afterwards exploring the library in their usual fashion and working on some puzzles provided in the children’s stacks. All in all, it was a great experience for our family. If you haven’t yet, we hope you and your little ones take the opportunity to check out the services and activities offered at your local library.
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