Early Literacy Program Changes

The Youth Services department is redesigning the early literacy programs to better serve our littlest patrons and their grown-ups! Here are the details…

But first, what exactly is early literacy?

Early literacy programs are not intended to teach children how to read. Instead, these programs are designed to help children develop the skills they will need to learn to read in school. The fancy terms for these skills are vocabulary, print motivation, print awareness, narrative skills, letter knowledge, and phonological awareness. Translated into easier language these skills are knowing all the letters of the ABCs, knowing how books work, recognizing printed words on a page, being able to make individual letter sounds, and knowing how to tell a story or describe an activity. Early literacy at the library is driven by the five practices of sing, talk, read, write, and play.

Toddler Time

Wonderful Ones and Tales for Twos is being combined into one program called Toddler Time. The program will replace the Tales for Twos time slot on Fridays at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. All the same elements will be presented, such as books, fingerplays, flannel stories, and songs. Toddler Time is intended for toddlers age 1-3 and their grown-ups.

Baby Storytime

Baby and Me is being renamed as Baby Storytime and will be moved up one hour to 10 a.m. on Thursdays. Grown-ups and their babies age 0-12 months can look forward to even more books, bounces, songs, and fingerplays.

Preschool Storytime

Good news! There is no change to Preschool Storytime! The program will continue to be offered Tuesday and Wednesday mornings at 10 a.m. Preschool Storytime is designed for children age 3-5, but younger and older siblings are always welcome.

For more information about all of our Youth Services programs, check out the YS Fall program brochure here.

Celebrating a Decade of our Library Director!

It’s not difficult for a staff member to find library director, Eric Gustafson, in the building. All one has to do is pause and listen carefully, because you can hear him just about anywhere. His voice can travel a mile, at least. And there’s comfort in the sound of his sometimes loud voice.

In September, the staff of Derby Public Library celebrated ten years of Eric Gustafson’s tenure as library director. And what a ten years it has been!

Melanie Turner, library board chair, presents Eric with his 10-year plaque.

Many of our patrons can recognize the booming success the library has had under Eric’s careful guidance. In the last ten years, Eric has helmed many library projects that have enriched the lives of the citizens of Derby.

Eric brought more ebooks and digital content to library patrons with the apps Hoopla and Libby. Thanks to Eric the library is now a one-stop shop for many services outside of checking out materials. Services such as passports, mobile printing, notary services, and business center databases. Eric started Santa’s Village and then expanded it exponentially into Christmas in the Park. Viewed by many as his crowning achievement, the amazing KanShare library consortium was Eric’s brainchild. With careful negotiations, Eric brought eight regional libraries together in one shared catalog with room for additional expansion.

But what the patrons perhaps don’t see is the work culture Eric has created for his staff. He is often heard telling new employees, “If you aren’t having fun, then I’m not doing a good job.” Eric has fostered a work culture of productivity, creativity, and fun. He has made change a positive experience, not one of dread and frustration.

Eric is honest, transparent, and sincere. These qualities make him a great boss man, Supreme Overlord, and fearless leader.

So cheers to 10 years of Gustafson! Here’s to many more successful years for Derby Public Library.

Run to the Library!

It’s hard to drive around Derby and not notice the abundance of wide, smooth bike paths that line nearly every street. According to the Derby website, there are over 25 miles of hike & bike paths within city limits!

Derby has an active running community that makes use of these sidewalks. Believe it or not the library can be a resource for runners. We have many books that offer advice and inspiration for the running community.

Runner’s Field Guide by Mark Remy
The Runner’s World magazine columnist offers a humorous guide to running and all the things needed to accomplish your goals.

Train Like a Mother by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea
If you need help getting started, this is an excellent book. It includes beginner advice and training plans from 5K all the way up to a full marathon.

Two Hours by Ed Caesar
Can the 2-hour marathon be broken? This book examines the science behind running and analyzes if and when we will see a human break 2-hours in the marathon.

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall
In Copper Canyon, Mexico, lives the Tarahumara Indians. They run just to run in barefoot sling shoes. Can they beat the most accomplished ultramarathons of the United States? Writer Chris McDougall travels to Mexico to find out and finds some inspiration for his own fledgling running hobby.

The library also carries Runner’s World magazine in print and electronic form through our RBDigital app.

So lace up your running shoes and come check out some running books at the library. Or take your kids to High Park and have them run fartleks between Storywalk pages as you enjoy the latest book on display. A fartlek is fun to run and fun to say!

#dinovember Dinosaur Bios Part Two

Name: Bob
Species: Dimetrodon
Temporal Range: Permian Period, 295-272 million years ago
Bio: The other dinos keep reminding me that I’m not a real dinosaur. It’s true. I’m not. But they still let me hang out with them.
Favorite Book: The Magnificent Book of Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Creatures by Tom Jackson

Name: Stella
Species: Triceratops
Temporal Range: Cretaceous Period, 70-65 million years ago
Bio: The other girls keep telling me I should put a big purple bow on my neck frill, but I’d rather use it to play soccer.
Favorite Book: Charge of the Triceratops (Dinosaur Cove #2) by Rex Stone

Name: Birdie
Species: Dilophosaurus
Temporal Range: Jurassic Period, 201-189 million years ago
Bio: Do you like my pretty pink crests on my head? I’m a dainty little Dilophosaurus that likes to eat sushi and do crafts, but not at the same time.
Favorite Book: Origami Dinosaurs by Anna George.

Name: Dewey
Species: Brachiosaurus
Temporal Range: Jurassic Period, 150-145 million years ago
Bio: My name is Dewey. My neck is long. That’s all I have to say.
Favorite Book: I Want to Be a Brachiosaurus by Thomas Kingsley Troupe

#dinovember Dinosaur Bios Part One

Name: Junior
Species: Tyrannosaurus Rex
Temporal Range: Cretaceous Period, 67-65 million years ago
Bio: Rex means King, and that’s me! My favorite thing to do it brush my huge, sharp teeth. My real name is Thesaurus Rex, Jr., but you can call me Junior.
Favorite Book: Rex Wrecks It! by Ben Clanton

Name: Crag
Species: Stegosaurus
Temporal Range: Jurassic Period, 155-144 million years ago
Bio: Don’t mess with me! I might whack you with one of my spikes. I’m named after a rock, and I’m tough like one too.
Favorite Book: Oona Find an Egg (Oodlethunks #1) by Adele Griffin

Name: Story
Species: Apatosaurus
Temporal Range: Jurassic Range, 154-145 million years ago
Bio: I used to be called a Brontosaurus, but those silly paleontologists changed my name. My favorite thing in the world to do is read and eat salads at the same time.
Favorite Book: Dinosaurs Before Dark (Magic Tree House #1) by Mary Pope Osborne

Name: Marie
Species: Allosaurus
Temporal Range: Jurassic Period, 150-145 million years ago
Bio: A lot of people think I’m a T. Rex, but I’m an Allosaurus. They call me that because I eat ALL the other dinosaurs. Get it?!
Favorite Book: Linus the Vegetarian T. Rex by Robert Neubecker

Check out what our dinosaurs are up to on Facebook and Instagram. Just look for the #dinovember hashtag!

Summer Reading Scavenger Hunt

Summer Reading is in full swing! The Youth Services staff is so excited to see all the readers signing up for the reading program.

We truly have something for everyone. In addition to the reading program, we also have several events that patrons can attend at the library from weekly storytimes, school age programs, teen programs, and our big performers.

We also have a weekly scavenger hunt that is celebrating its fifth year this summer!

In 2013, Miss Hannah had a wild idea to do away with the weekly goody bag prizes and pool that money for one BIG prize. She sat down and brainstormed different ideas that would still encourage weekly visits to the library. Digging for Treasure was born!

It was wildly successful. Kids had a blast finding little Gnomington the Gnome all over the library. Miss Hannah lost count of the number of entry forms she copied, but it was well into the 1000s. One lucky family took home a WiiU.

In 2014, Derby kids hunted for Adam the Atom. In 2015, they searched for Read the SuperOwl. And last year they searched for ninjas colored by the rainbow. Three more WiiUs found happy homes with their new families.

This year, there’s puzzle pieces hiding. The Youth Services staff is asking kids to “Build a Better World” and find all 8 missing puzzle pieces. One lucky kiddo and family will go home with a new Nintendo Switch!

Miss Hannah is a nostalgic librarian and keeps all past years’ scavenger hunt subjects on her desk. She looks forward to many future years of summer reading library scavenger hunts. What will hide next year?