Sophie Brown and her family have just inherited a farm from her great-uncle Jim. Her father has recently lost his job, her mother is a busy full-time writer, and they have all just moved from the city and have no experience with farming. Sophie finds a funny little chicken while exploring the farm and begins correspondence with a woman named Agnes of the Redwood Farm Supply company. Soon Sophie is learning all she can about chickens through trips to the local library and through Agnes's letters. Something is really different about great-uncle Jim's chickens though and more keep showing up on the farm every day, as well as the mysterious Ms. Griegson who keeps trying to steal them. It's up to Sophie to keep her new chickens safe and to convince her parents that she is up to the task of being a chicken farmer. Written entirely in letters to her recently deceased great-uncle Jim and beloved Abuelita, as well as to Agnes of Redwood Farm Supply this is an odd and adorable story about starting over in a new place, making friends, and supernatural chickens! To accompany this great story are adorable illustrations of all the silly chickens. (Grades 4-6 School Library Journal)
On the evening of November 10, 1975 the cargo ship SS Edmund Fitzgerald got caught in an early winter storm. Facing near hurricane-force winds and waves up to 35 feet high, the ship suddenly sank to the bottom of Lake Superior. All those aboard lost their lives.
While there have been many shipping disasters on the Great Lakes, the sinking of the SS Edmund Fitzgerald remains the best known. Singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot wrote a hit song about the tragedy in 1976.
Check out these books to learn more.
Recently the Teen Advisory Board of the Upper Arlington Public Library held a poetry contest with three divisions. The K-4 grade winner was Katie H. with her poem “Garden” which appears below and the grade 5-8 winner was Ainsley D. whose poem” I Am Sunshine” also appears below right after Katie's. Congratulations to both winners!
The richest garden high up on the hill
had the smell of roses
a slightly pointed breeze
the hum of the bees
the richest soil
the biggest trees.
A warm but not cold wind
the ripple of the pond
as I skip the stones
the rock is smooth, the rock is flat.
The richest garden high up on the hill
in which I visit every day.
-by Katie H.
I Am Sunshine
I am sunshine
Dancing all around
I am beauty
Clothed in swirling clouds
I am happiness
Laughing at the sun
I am fearlessness
With my hair undone
I am wind
Knowing all things
I am fire
Love songs I sing
I am water
Quick and carefree
I am earth
Wrapped in mystery
I am a Girl. I am free
-By Ainsley D.
A little girl wakes up to the sound of her parents working in the kitchen. There is suddenly the sound of something else, shuffling and clunking and clanging. The parents are dancing in the kitchen! Dancing fun for everyone, especially those ages 4 and up.
Fifth grader Tamaya is a good student and always follows the rules. She feels lucky to attend the Woodbridge Academy and loves school. Marshall is her older neighbor who she has been walking to and from school with along the same route for years…that is until the day Marshall heads towards the off-limits woods next to the school to avoid Chad Wilson the school bully. Tamaya doesn't want to follow, but she knows she's not permitted to take the long walk home alone so she decides to walk into the woods after him. Both Tamaya and Marshall quickly find themselves in trouble: Tamaya begins slipping and landing in the strange looking fuzzy brown mud, and then Chad shows up in the woods to fight Marshall. Tamaya ends up throwing that same mud in Chad's face and they get away, but that's when the real trouble begins. When Tamaya wakes the next morning she finds that she has a terrible rash and as the school day goes on it gets worse. Then Tamaya hears that Chad never made it home the night before and that he is missing and she remembers all that mud she threw in his face. Tamaya decides to head into the woods after him. Little does she, or the town, know that the fuzzy mud will end up becoming a national story that involves Senate committee hearings, a bioengineer, and the CDC. Just what is going on with all that mud?
The third Monday in February we celebrate our Presidents.
Let's also celebrate the President's wives, daughters and sisters that were America's First Ladies!
From Martha Washington to Michelle Obama, there have been 44 first ladies.
Here are some fun facts about the women who really ran the White House.
Dolley Madison (#4) was well known for saving important documents and the portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart during the War of 1812. The portrait is 62 inches by 97 inches! You can view this famous painting at the Smithsonian . She was also hostess for the previous President Thomas Jefferson, whose wife had died many years before.
Lucy Hayes (#19) was from Ohio and started the first Easter Egg Roll in 1877.
Frances Folsom (#22 and #24) married Grover Cleveland in the first wedding ever held in the White House in 1886.
Caroline Harrison (#23) was an artist who helped decorate the first Christmas tree in the White House in 1889. Mrs. Harrison was also responsible for bringing electricity to the White House.
Pat Nixon (#37) was the first First Lady to wear pants in public.
Hillary Clinton (#42) was the only First Lady to be elected to public office. She served two terms as United States Senator from New York. Hillary was also the first to host a webcast from the White House.
Eight Presidents were Ohioans! Canton, OH is home to the National First Ladies Library in America, the only one in the United States. It is the former home of William and Ida McKinley (President #25) and features rotating exhibits in their home and the education center next door.
Happy Mr. and Mrs. Presidents Day!
Welcome back everyone! This is the last post in the Super Power Saturdays blog series. We have covered a lot of different books this summer – super powers in fiction, graphic novels, middle school reads, and more. If you missed any of these posts, or just want to re-read them, links to them are at the end of this blog post. Now, after all these great stories, it’s time to take that super powered inspiration and channel it into creating our own stories. So, to wrap things up we will look at books that can help you create your own stories, graphic novels, and characters, and even find out how to break into the writing business! A few great ones to start with are:
- Heroes! Draw Your Own Superheroes, Gadget Geeks and Other Do-Gooders by Jay Stephens
- How To Draw Superheroes by Jimmy Hansen
- Write Your Own Graphic Novel by Natalie Rosinsky
- So, You Want To Be A Comic Book Artist? by Philip Amara
- So, You Want To Be A Writer? by Vicki Hambleton
- Guy Write: What Every Guy Writer Needs To Know by Ralph Fletcher
- How To Write Stories by Celia Warren
- Look At My Book: How Kids Can Write And Illustrate Terrific Books by Loreen Leedy
- Comics And Graphic Novels by Richard Spilsbury
- How To Write A Comic Book by Nel Yomtov
- Comic Strips: Create Your Own Comic Strips From Start To Finish by Art Roche
- Art Panels, Bam! Speech Bubbles, Pow! Writing Your Own Graphic NovelBy Trisha Shaskan
For some online fun creating comics check out Make Beliefs Comix. It’s an interactive website that has different online features and options, as well as printable downloads and writing prompts, to help you to create your own comics.
For links to these and other great books about creating your own stories, graphic novels, and characters check out the Creating Stories and Graphic Novels book list in our catalog.
Blogs in this Super Power Saturdays blog series:
- What’s Your Super Power? (Juvenile Fiction)
- Juvenile Graphic Novels: All Kinds of Powers!
- Middle School Super Powers! (Middle School Fiction)
- Juvenile Nonfiction: All Kinds of Heroes!
Booklists from this blog series:
- Juvenile Super Powered Fiction
- Juvenile Graphic Novels: All Kinds of Powers!
- Middle School Powers
- Juvenile Nonfiction: All Kinds of Powers
- Creating Stories and Graphic Novels
Happy “Super Powered” Reading Everyone!
Julia and her house have settled by the sea. It was too quiet! She hangs up a sign welcoming all lost creatures and suddenly her house is not quiet anymore. For all those who welcome lost creatures ages 4 and up.
While planning your family's summer activities remember to include the Metro Parks summer programs into your calender. Free family programs include hiking, canoeing, fishing and storytime activities for preschoolers. You can access the Metro Parks program and events calender at http://www.metroparks.net/
Before you begin your adventure at the park, stop by the Upper Arlington Public Library for some great books on nature. Here are some suggestions to get you started…
Dragons are everywhere! There have been many great picture books published in the last couple of years that explore all aspects of dragon lives. If you love dragons, check these out!
- Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
- Me and My Dragon by David Biedrzcki
- How to Be Friends With a Dragon by Valerie Gorbachev
- Not Your Typical Dragon by Dan Bar-el
- King Jack and the Dragon by Peter Bentley
- Have You Seen My Dragon? by Steve Light
- Lovabye Dragon by Barbara Joosse
- The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Marino
- Waking Dragons by Jane Yolen