Diversity in Picture Books

Hi everyone! This is Miss Jeanna. As a children’s librarian and mother of two little ones, I see a lot of picture books and stories created to transform the lives of small children. Stories that explore concepts or creativity. Stories that delve into fairy tale and folk lore. I see illuminating stories of fantasy and serious slice of life tales.  

With such a rich variety of stories to choose from, why then is there less variety when it comes to children’s book characters? I look at the children who visit the library, and the children who attend my programs, and even my own children, and I think of the value of seeing themselves in these stories. Representation matters. 

Thankfully there are many authors who introduce diverse characters into their magical worlds. Below are some of the best picture books featuring diverse characters. Stop by the Lindenhurst Memorial Library to pick up some of these books or ask a librarian about other diverse titles to enjoy.

Parenting Resources at the Library

Even the best parents in the world need a little help sometimes. Did you know that your local library can help you out with everything from adventurous activities to homework assistance? Below are a few resources you can find at Lindenhurst Memorial Library to help keep everyone entertained and educated. 

  1. Books, movies, DVDs, and more: While you likely already know what type of material the library has to offer, you may not realize the extent of it. We have books for babies, early readers, and chapter books. We have graphic novels and audio books. We also offer a huge collection of DVDs, video games, as well as devices like Hotspots, Starlings, and Launchpads. Additionally, we have a large Parenting Collection of current Parenting books. 
  1. Adventures Await: Looking to get out of the house? Why not explore Long Island by reserving a Museum Pass from us? Follow this link to learn more: Museum Pass Program 
  1. Homework Help: When homework piles up it can be tough on everyone. Let the library help you! We have FREE and LIVE tutors ready to help your child learn. Users can get free tutoring for math, science, reading/writing, social studies, and PSAT/SATs/ACT/AP and standardized tests. You can also submit homework questions, request essay feedback, and much more! Interested? Check it out here: Brainfuse eLearning 

Fun Exercises for Children

Regular physical activity in children is essential to developing and perfecting fine and gross motor skills. According to the Encyclopedia of Children’s Health, these skills are important to a child’s coordination, self confidence, ability to socialize, and academic performance. And since students are now learning at home, some or most of the time, I figured it would be a great time to introduce some ideas to create a healthy learning environment at home.

Some fun activities that your children could do include outside activities, such as walking, jogging, running, playing hopscotch, riding a bicycle, setting up an obstacle course in your backyard using hula hoops for the kids to jump through, or having a hula hoop contest. Raining or too cold to be outside? There are plently of inside activities that help to build Cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility such as doing Yoga, and Zumba. Look for some amazing movement and mindfulness videos created by child development experts on Go Noodle.

And don’t forget to check out some exercise videos for children on Hoopla. Not sure what Hoopla is? Our Niche Academy tutorial can help!

International Games Week

International Games Week is an initiative of the American Library Association to reconnect communities through their libraries around the educational, recreational, and social value of all types of games. 

There’s no better time to play games with your family than now! Break out board games and card games like Uno, Sorry, Apples to Apples, Spot It and more! There are also many new types of games you can learn to play like Exploding Kittens, Coup, Codenames, and Ticket to Ride.

There are many ways to celebrate this week and your love of games in general. Participate in a live virtual program with us, download online games to play, borrow books about games or borrow a videogame!

Virtual Game Programs at the Library

Here are some game programs to participate in at the library!

Grades 4-6
Friday, November 13, 4:00 – 5:00 pm
Join us for a virtual meet up to discuss
all things Pokémon! Pokémon Master
Lori Beth will be on hand to facilitate
Pokémon related topics such as your
favorite Pokémon, new cards, questions
about cards, and game play strategies!
Bring your cards and virtually share
some of your Pokémon adventures!

Grades 6-12
Wednesdays, December 2 (Jackbox
Games) & December 30 (Escape the
Room) 3:00-4:00 pm
Calling all gamers! Join our librarians
on our Discord server for some fun and
exciting games. Don’t forget to bring the
snacks. Registration begins November 2


December 19,
6:30-7:30 pm.
Let’s get together
for some fun and exciting virtual games.
Grab the whole family and compete
against your neighbors, all from the
comfort of your own home. Don’t forget
to bring the snacks! Registration begins
November 16

Online Games to Play on Your Own Time:

Caterpillar Feast Eat your way through the leaves before the owl finds you!

Mint Cooperative A mint-based superhero game designed to fit in an Altoids tin.

Orchard Grab as much fruit as you can by overlapping tiles in the most advantageous way in this simple and clever game.

Rolling Realms This downloadable page features 9 different games on one page.

Read About Gaming:

Learn More About Our Museum Passes

Did you know the library offers museum passes for you to borrow? These museum passes offer you the key to a variety of fun places to go. From planetariums to state parks, there is something fun for everyone to do! Here is some background information on each museum.

American Airpower Museum Farmingdale, NY

Admission is for 2 adults and 2 children.

This museum’s mission is to preserve the legacy of all Americans who have sacrificed themselves to defend our liberties. They hope to educate a new generation by presenting the operational aircraft and armor in the museum’s collection and its related displays, exhibits and programs.

Cold Spring Harbor Fish Hatchery & Aquarium Cold Spring Harbor, NY

Admission is for 2 adults and 4 children.

After 99 years as a New York State trout hatchery, this non-profit center became dedicated to educating visitors about the freshwater ecosystems of New York. They have the largest living collection of New York State freshwater reptiles, fishes and amphibians. Visitors can tour two aquarium buildings and eight outdoor ponds, feed hungry trout and try “Catch & Keep” fishing.

Cradle of Aviation Garden City, NY

Each pass admits 2 adults and up to 2 children, 18 years and younger.

This aviation and spaceflight museum is located in East Garden City on Long Island to commemorate Long Island’s part in the history of aviation. This educational center preserves Long Island’s contribution to aerospace, science and technology by inspiring future generations through learning.

Empire Pass New York State

The Empire Pass provides unlimited day-use vehicle entry to most New York State Parks including forests, beaches, trails and more. Here are just some of the places you can visit with the pass:

-Bayard Cutting Arboretum

-Belmont Lake State Park

-Captree State Park

-Connetquot River State Park Preserve

-Heckscher State Park

-Jones Beach

-Planting Fields Arboretum State Historic Park

-Robert Moses

-Sunken Meadow State Park

Fire Island Lighthouse Preservation Society Captree Island, NY

Admission is for 2 adults and 4 children.

The Fire Island Lighthouse is the tallest lighthouse on Long Island. Visit the lighthouse and climb the 182 steps to the top of the tower. There you will see the ocean, Fire Island, the bays, Long Island to the North and on a clear day, the skyline of New York City. You can also see the Keeper’s Quarters, the Len’s Building, and the Boathouse.

Long Island Children’s Museum Garden City, NY

This pass admits 2 adults and 2 children.

The Long Island Children’s Museum offers 14 interactive exhibits, plus live theater, art spaces, and daily activities to provide hours of discovery for children of all ages.

Nassau County Museum of Art Roslyn Harbor, NY

Includes admission for 2 adults and 4 children

Visit this museum to get a deeper understanding of art and culture through their exhibits and education programs. They work hard to enhance their permanent collections, sculpture park, historic property, and natural setting.

Old Bethpage Village Restoration Old Bethpage, NY

Includes free admission for up to 4 people.

This unique history museum offers visitors a chance to step back in time and experience life as it was on Long Island during the 19th century. This village consists of 36 houses, barns, and buildings dating from 1660 through 1875.

Old Westbury Gardens Old Westbury, NY

This pass includes free admission/parking for 2 adults and their children to the gardens.

The historic mansion at Old Westbury Gardens sits among 200 acres of formal gardens, landscaped grounds, woodlands, ponds, and lakes. The Westbury house itself is furnished with English antiques and decorative arts. On the Gardens’ premises you can attend guided tours, museum exhibitions, pop up concerts, gardening classes and more!

Vanderbilt Museum, Mansion and Planetarium Centerport, NY

Each pass admits 2 adults and 4 children. Includes museum grounds, exhibits and one free regularly scheduled planetarium show. 

This informal educational facility is a unique combination of mansion, marine and natural history museum, planetarium and park. This facility was Mr William K Vanderbilt II’s idea to help promote understanding and appreciation of the diversity of life.

A New Halloween

Halloween is upon us and with the continued lingering of Covid-19, many of us are unsure of what to do with our little ghouls and ghosts.  The risks of walking the neighborhood or going to Trunk or Treats are very real.  Social distancing, sanitizing, mask wearing, and even candy gathering are some of the challenges that this very social holiday brings. 

But I say, don’t get discouraged and let there be Halloween….just not like we’re used to.  You don’t need to walk the neighborhood and get pillowcases full of candy for it to be Halloween.  In fact, the very first Halloween didn’t even involve candy or costumes…well maybe not the kind of costumes that we think of.  Halloween wasn’t even called Halloween!  It was first known as Samhain, then All Hallows or All Saints Day.  Just like its name, the holiday went through several stages before it became what we know it as today.  

Halloween dates back almost 2,000 years ago, where Celtics celebrated the end of the harvest season and the dead.  They would build big bonfires and wear animal-like costumes to honor their dead.  When the Romans seized the Celtic lands, they combined the celebration with theirs adding Goddess’s to honor.  Then, the Christians adopted the holiday to honor and pray for the souls of the dead.  They walked in parades, built bonfires like the Celtics, and dressed up like angels, saints, and devils. When the tradition arrived in America,plays were added along with ghost stories. As time went on costumes changed and children started to dress up and go from house to house for treats. Halloween as we know it came into effect around the 20th Century.

If you need more facts about Halloween and its history check out these great books in the Children’s Library:

So, instead of trick or treating this year try something from the past like building a bon fire and telling ghost stories. Or, you can try one of the suggestions below to help you and your family get into the Halloween spirit.

Zoom Halloween

Why not “Zoom” into a Halloween party? Invite all your friends and family to join you for a very spooky party…virtually. Halloween backgrounds from Unsplash.com can easily be used to add an extra spooktacular touch to your party. Make sure you don’t forget the costumes so you can host a “Monster Fashion Show” for all to “ooooo & ahhhh” at. And what would a party be without music and games? You can stop by the library to pick up a copy of Kidz Bop: Halloween Hits! or Halloween Party cd to help get your Monster Groove on.

As for games, there are tons of Halloween themed Bingo sheets that you can print online along with ideas on what other types of games you can play virtually such as charades, Simon Says, a Haunted Scavenger Hunt, and Ghost Bowling.

“Boolicious” Dishes

For dinner time, make hot “mummy” dogs with ghost-tators or “eyeballs” and spaghetti with black lemonade. Then for dessert you can whip up some Spider-chip cookies or a Graveyard cake with marshmallow ghosts and skeleton bone candies. And if that’s not enough, you can stop by the library and check out one of our Halloween Cookbooks for more creepy dinner and snack ideas.

Halloween Movies

Halloween wouldn’t be the same without a “bone-chilling” movie feature and with Covid-19, this is a great way to spend the holiday. So grab some “bewitched” popcorn and bubbling witches brew and head to the couch or your favorite chair to enjoy a Halloween film-fest. Here at the library you can find many family-fun movies that are sure to bring a smile and maybe even a shiver down your spines.

Spooktacular Crafts

Making Halloween crafts at home is a great way to get the family together. One simple idea that can help spread some Halloween fun is making Ghost Greeting Cards. These cards can definitely bring a spooky surprise to all that you send them too. If you have an empty vegetable can or soup can you can add some paint and turn it into a Frank-Can-Stein. And with all those toilet paper rolls laying around, mummy’s can be made or even a Bat Mobile. For more spooky ideas come to the library and check out one of our many Halloween Craft books.

Find Your Next Great Read with Book Browse

The library is now offering Book Browse database to all of our patrons.

This website offers you in-depth book reviews, author interviews, book previews, and reading guides. There are many features that can help readers find the next book they will like and this database is meant to help you save time finding that next book. Here are some highlights from this comprehensive database:

What’s New” tab:

Under this tab you will find book news, articles, what other readers recommend, and what’s getting published this week.

You will also find the Editor’s Choice section. In this section, you can read reviews, an excerpt from the book and explore the historical, cultural and contextual aspects of the book.

Find Books” tab:

Under this tab you will find the Young Adults page.

You will also find a Featured Books section with hand-picked books for young adults and more recent titles.

Another great part of this page are the Reading Lists. You can click on any term and a list of books in that genre will come up for YA.

The Read-Alikes Tab:

If you enjoyed a certain book and would like to read something similar you can visit this section where you will find hand-selected read-alikes. It breaks it down for you by title to title and author to author recommendations.

This database is perfect for readers 10 and up! Visit Book Browse Here!

The Great Giveback

Saturday October 19, 2020 will be the third annual Great Give Back. The Great Give Back is a community service initiative created by the Suffolk County Library Directors Association and the Suffolk Cooperative Library System in conjunction with the Nassau County Library System.

The mission of The Great Give Back is to provide a day of opportunities for the patrons of the Public Libraries of New York State to participate in meaningful, service-oriented experiences.

Community service and volunteerism have always been very important to me. When I was in middle school and high school I belonged to many clubs and organizations that had community service and volunteerism as their central tenants and it’s one of the reasons I manage so many of our community service programs here.

I love our annual Great Give Back; it is a wonderful opportunity for the entire family to get involved and enjoy the benefits of community service and volunteerism. This is a great way for us to share with our children how volunteering makes a difference and how good it feels to help other people in our community and to enact change.

I am so excited for this year’s Great Give Back activities. This year for The Great Give Back we are:

Inviting teens to participate on our Instagram for Teentober. Help us promote the library by creating social media posts for our Instagram.

Inviting everyone from our tiniest tots to our wisest retirees to make cards for the residents of the Berkshires Nursing Home. Register to receive a cardmaking kit; after decorating your cards return them to the basket in the Children’s room.

Inviting everyone in our community to join us for a Clean Up our Community event. Meet us at the library for gloves, bags, and masks.

I hope you decide to join us for any or all of these amazing Great Give Back opportunities. We look forward to seeing you there!

It’s OK to take Me Time

Sometimes we feel guilty for putting our self first but I am here to tell it’s OK to pamper yourself everyone once a while. Go for a nice walk, binge watch some TV, read a book, or have a nice glass of wine. There is nothing wrong with wanting a little alone time to recuperate your mind, body, and spirit. As a wife, mother, and librarian I find myself overwhelmed sometimes, especially during these new and challenging times we are facing as a country. I have learned to step back from it all and take a moment for myself. I am going to share with you some resources that you can use to help you with Me Time.

Great eBooks and eAudio books can be found searching the catalog at https://lindenhurstlibrary.org/, such topics you can search is mindfulness, relaxation, mediation, reiki, yoga, and more….

If you want to binge watch some TV then Hoopla is the site for you. It has so many genres for you to choose from and can be view on a computer, smartphone, or tablet. You can also flip through a magazine on the Flipster. Flipster has a variety of magazine that can be view on any internet connected device or you can download the Flipster app. All of these create resources can be found at https://lindenhurstlibrary.org/digital/.

Don’t want to stay indoors for your Me Time, then head outside. You can always walk around your neighbor or head to a local state park. Here is the site to find a park in your area https://parks.ny.gov/, but please remember to abide by social distancing rules.

There are so many ways you can take your Me Time. You just need to find what works for you. It is important to take care of yourself, as you are taking care of others.

Banned Books Week

Banned Books Week reminds us to celebrate our freedom to read, draws attention to banned and challenged books, and highlights individuals who have been persecuted. Taking the time to read what you want is a part of exercising your First Amendment rights!

Keep the celebration up by doing these things:

Read a Banned Book

This may seem like an obvious choice, but it’s also the most effective! Check out this list of banned Children’s and YA books or choose one from our bibliography:

YA Banned/Challenged Books

Children’s Banned/Challenged Books

Reach Out to an Author

Tell an author how much their work means to you! Reach out to an author who’s on the banned books list or to an author you enjoy.

Writing a book takes a lot of effort and can be extremely challenging. You can reach out through social media, their websites or e-mail and let them know much you appreciate, value, and love the books they share with us.

Share a Banned Books Infographic

Infographics like this one from American Library Association can be posted and shared on social media apps. ALA has other infographics that can be downloaded and shared in order to spread awareness.

ALA Infographic Downloads

Join or Host a Virtual Read-Out

The Banned Books Week Read-Out is your way to stand up to censorship and exercise your rights by reading from a banned book or discussing censorship issues on camera. Since 1982, banned authors such as Judy Blume, Dav Pilkey, and John Green have participated in this read-out. Join them and others and have the chance to be added to the Banned Books Week YouTube channel.

Get Informed

Another great thing you can do is educate yourself. Read about what Banned Books week is and its history. Then learn about the history of the books that were challenged and banned.

Do you know the difference between a challenged book and a banned book? A challenge is only an attempt to remove or restrict material, based solely on the opinions of a person or group. Challenging a book is damaging because it could restrict access to others. When you ban a book, you remove the material.