August Programming for Littles

We are taking a break from some of our regular Zoom classes in August, but we still have lots of ways for you to have fun!

If you like to sing, move, and make music...
Sign up for Steppin' with Irish Dance for Preschoolers (ages 3-4)
Meets in the parking lot at 2pm on Thursday, Aug. 27th

Or slow down and practice some mindful movements at Pause and Pose - a yoga storytime held outside in the Prairie Patch on Mondays at 10a.m. from August 10 - 24

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to schedule a custom, 15-minute Mini Musician session weekly in August, for children 18 months - 6 years with a caregiver. You can also listen to Miss Heather's curated playlists anytime on Spotify. Classes are held via Zoom.

If you are getting ready for Kindergarten, sign up to receive one of our Kindergarten Readiness Packets! Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your child's name to request a packet, personalized for your child and full of fun ways to practice the skills they will need to start this next chapter. Please indicate if you'd like to pick up your packet at the Kids and Teens Ask Us Desk or through Curbside Service. 

If you like to create and craft...
Pickup a LittleShop at Home Mystery Bag, each with a surprise assortment of materials and paper inside. Request for curbside pickup by calling 630/887-8760, or stop into the Kids and Teens Department. While supplies last.

If you have a baby 17 months old or younger...
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to schedule a custom, 15-minute Babytime weekly in August, with songs, rhymes, sign language, and more. Classes are held via Zoom.

If you want some one-on-one time with a storytime librarian...
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to schedule a Storytime One-on-One session! Classes are held via Zoom.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!


Honey Boy

With the arrival of Disney+, many of us are reliving our tween years by watching old favorite shows like Lizzie McGuire and Even Stevens. Perhaps this is what makes the release of Honey Boy (2019, rated R), a film based on Disney star Shia LaBeouf's childhood experiences as a rising actor, all the more irresistibly jarring.

Fans of  Shia LaBeouf first fell in love with his class-clown act in Even Stevens and continued to admire his work as it took on a more serious note in films like Disturbia or Fury, or even a more commercial note in films like Transformers or Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Somewhere along the way, however, it became clear that LaBeouf was battling some inner demons and the persona he was putting into the world didn't always line up with what fans expected to see.

Honey Boy tells the brutally honest story of what life looked like for LaBeouf behind the scenes. LaBeouf plays his father in the movie, exposing the abuse he suffered in his care. Noah Jupe, who plays a young LaBeouf, expertly depicts the longing for emotional support that is so often masked by humor. The screenplay was written by LaBeouf during his time in rehab as a form of therapy and now his story is shedding light on the ways we can all so easily bury our past, giving no thought to the damaging weed that will one day sprout through the surface as a result.

Watch Honey Boy today on Amazon Prime, or stick to the lighter side of Shia LaBeouf's career and enjoy all episodes of Even Stevens on Disney+. Borrow the library's Roku with Amazon Prime or Roku with Disney+.


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Resources for Returning to Childcare and Preschool

There is a lot of uncertainty and anxiety about schools and childcare facilities reopening in the Fall. Parents and teachers are asking questions like "What will it look like?" and "How can I prepare my children?"

These questions are hard to answer, but there are resources that can help. The Illinois Early Learning Project has a new toolkit of resources, strategies, and activities to keep young children learning at home and help prepare them for what the world outside of home looks like upon reopening.

You can find graphic tip sheets with helpful phrases to use to explain why we wear masks or how to social distance. There are Parenting Pep Talks with tips on handling your child's big feelings and making time for connection. And of course, there are lots of resources for learning at home during trying times and tips about getting your child ready to return to childcare.

Check them all out here!

July Programming for Littles!

We are excited to offer one new outdoor program in July!
Join Miss Megan for our Mud Kitchen sensory play in the Prairie Patch. Mudpies, potions and other creative, messy play areas will be available for families to rotate through. This program is designed for ages 2 - 4, but siblings are welcome!
Register for one of the 4 available groups to participate in a weekly time of exploration while maintaining social distancing.
Group A meets Tuesdays at 9:30a.m.
Group B meets Tuesdays at 10:30a.m.
Group C meets Thursdays at 9:30a.m.
Group D meets Thursdays at 10:30a.m.

The rest of our programming for July will remain the same as it was for June, meeting with our littlest patrons live on Zoom.

Follow the links below for more information about the programs and to register.
You only need to register once per program, and you will be set for the whole month.

If you want to hear stories and sing songs, check out....
Family Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m.

If you like to move and groove, check out...
Rollick & Roll LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

If you like to tinker and learn, check out...
Stories + STEAM LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

If you've got a baby 17 months or younger, check out...
Baby Book Bees Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Thursdays, at 9:30 a.m.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!

*Make sure to register 24-hours in advance so that we can send you a Zoom invite. If you want to register after that window closes, just contact Miss Lexy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Thirteen Doorways, Wolves Behind Them All

Here is a ghost story unlike any you've read before... in 1941, Frankie and her siblings have been left by their widowed father to live in a Chicago orphanage. They are left trying to make a way for themselves amidst poverty and injustice in a world left crumbled by the Great Depression and now on fire with war.

We follow Frankie's coming-of-age story through the eyes of a girl who died in 1918, whose spirit is left lingering the streets of Chicago, unsure how to move on. Glimpses of her past are pieced together as she remembers what happened to her and realizes that coming to terms with the truth is the only way to be set free.

Laura Ruby has weaved together a haunting and heartwarming blend of historical fantasy and mystery, full of rich characters whose stories reveal profound truths about the vast possibilities of human nature. Check out Thirteen Doorways, Wolves Behind Them All (2019) today.

Read the ebook on Overdrive or listen to the audiobook on Hoopla.



3rd Rock from the Sun

When you are looking for binge-able TV to occupy your time, don't overlook the oldies but goodies, like 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996-2001, rated TV-PG). Enjoy the familiar, though much younger, faces of John Lithgow and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in this sitcom about a group of aliens on a mission to study human behavior by posing as a not-quite average family stationed in the fictional city of Rutherford, Ohio.

Hilarious antics ensue as the foursome navigate how to act like a family unit, form romantic relationships, and establish a sense of self in their unfamiliar bodies.

Stream all six seasons on Hoopla or place holds on the dvds!


Don't Miss Out! Interactive Programming for Littles

We are having so much fun engaging with our littlest patrons on Zoom! Our live, interactive programs create a more personal way to connect with you even if we can't be together in person just yet.

Check out the programs we are holding throughout the month of June below. We'd love to have you join us!

Follow the links below for more information about the programs and to register.
You only need to register once per program, and you will be set for the whole month.

If you want to hear stories and sing songs, check out....
Family Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m.

If you like to move and groove, check out...
Rollick & Roll LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

If you like to tinker and learn, check out...
Stories + STEAM LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

If you've got a baby 17 months or younger, check out...
Baby Book Bees Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Thursdays, at 9:30 a.m.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!

*Make sure to register 24-hours in advance so that we can send you a Zoom invite. If you want to register after that window closes, just contact Miss Lexy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



Spotlight on Storytime One-on-One!

One highlight to come out of our time staying at home has been the unique opportunity to offer Storytime One-on-One sessions to your children. We love spending time connecting with your children and giving them something special to look forward to. 

What people are sharing with us about their experiences:

  • "I just wanted to tell you [my child] absolutely loves story time with you! He looks forward to it. Thank you so much!"
  • "Thank you for the storytime! [My child]'s older brother has been having daily Zoom meetings for school and [he] has been feeling left out"
  • "I appreciate your efforts in choosing books that [my child] will enjoy :) He is so fascinated with the bubblegum song, he looks forward to it. On the whole, we are really happy that you are reading to him each week."
  • "[My child] was over the moon to have a one-on-one storytime with you!"

Want to set up a Storytime One-on-One for your child? Just contact one of our storytime librarians to schedule a 15-minute session!
*For ages birth-kindergarten

Miss Lexy: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Mr. Jack: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Miss Heather: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Miss Megan: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Did You Know the NEW Hunger Games Book is on Hoopla?

With the library closed, you might find yourself feeling anxious about when you will be able to get your hands on a copy of the new Hunger Games book. I'm here to share the exciting news that you don't have to wait at all because it is currently available as an eAudiobook on hoopla! 

You can start listening to this prequel story that takes us back to the world of Panem through the eyes of an 18 year old Corolianus Snow, who has been chosen to mentor the female District 12 tribute during the 10th annual Hunger Games. 

If you prefer to wait for a copy to read, rather than listen, you can always place a hold to get one of our physical copies or to get the eBook through eMedia Library/Libby/Overdrive.



NEW Online Programs for Littles in June!

June is just around the corner and we have a new lineup of fun and engaging programs for your family that you won't want to miss.

Follow the links below for more information about the programs and to register. 
You only need to register once per program, and you will be set for the whole month. 

If you've been attending Storytime Social, check out....
Family Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Tuesdays at 9:30 a.m.

If you like to move and groove, check out...
Rollick & Roll LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

If you like to tinker and learn, check out...
Stories + STEAM LIVE via Zoom* on Wednesday evenings at 5:30 p.m.

If you've got a baby 17 months or younger, check out...
Baby Book Bees Storytime LIVE via Zoom* on Thursdays, at 9:30 a.m.

And as always, you can find a little bit of everything on-demand at any time on our YouTube page!

*Make sure to register 24-hours in advance so that we can send you a Zoom invite. If you want to register after that window closes, just contact Miss Lexy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

New from J.K. Rowling: The Ickabog!

Harry Potter fans have been treated to many great things during the lockdown, but this news may be the best of all… J.K. Rowling will be publishing a brand new story for children - for free online! "The Ickabog" will be serialized and published in daily installments starting March 26th until July 10th.

While this story is not related to Harry Potter in any way, I have a feeling we are about to get a story that rivals the classic Tales of Beedle the Bard, the collection of fairytales well-known and beloved to the children of the wizarding world that Rowling released in 2008.

Even more exciting is that Rowling is inviting her fans to be a part of "The Ickabog's"publication journey by allowing them to contribute their own original illustrations.

All royalties from the publication of the story will be donated to those most impacted by Covid-19.

Read more about the illustration competition and how "The Ickabog" came to be here.

And of course, start reading "The Ickabog" today!




Babies Need Words Every Day... so PLAY with them!

Children learn new words, letters, and sounds when you talk, read, sing, and write together. Play allows children to practice everything they've learned!

Here are some practical ways to PLAY with your baby:

  • Dance around with your little one! Singing and dancing to a familiar tune is a great way to bond with your child, plus it's a lot of fun!
  • Play Peek-a-boo with your baby. This simple game is great for amusing your child and helping them learn about the world around them.

Read more about how the Babies Need Words Every Day initiative from the Association of Library Service to Children (ALSC) is working to bridge the 30 Million Word Gap to support family literacy and learning across all backgrounds.



Read James and the Giant Peach with Taika Waititi and Friends to Aid Covid-19 Relief

So far in quarantine, we've been enjoying Storytime with the Obamas, doodling with Mo Willems, and reading Harry Potter with friends of the Wizarding World. Many authors, artists, and celebrities have taken it upon themselves to help entertain us with new twists on our favorite classics. 

Academy Award-winning director Taika Waititi (know for films such as Jojo Rabbit, What We Do in the Shadows, and Hunt for the Wilderpeople) has joined with Partners in Health to put together a 10-episode reading of Roald Dahl's classic tale, James and the Giant Peach. He is joined by an all-star creative cast including Meryl Streep, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chris Hemsworth, Ryan Reynolds, Mindy Kaling, Eddie Redmayne, Lupita Nyong'o, and many more.

The Roald Dahl Story Company and their partners will be matching every single donation made to the cause. 

New episodes released every Monday, Wednesday and Friday on YouTube. 

Start watching now and donate if you can!

Babies Need Words Every Day... so WRITE with them!

Children learn new words, letters, and sounds when you talk, read, sing, and write together. Play allows children to practice everything they've learned!

Here are some practical ways to help your baby practice WRITING:

  • Scribbling, tracing, and finger painting lead to developing hand-eye coordination and strengthening hand muscles so your baby can learn to turn pages and hold crayons. Have your baby finger paint in the tub before a bath!
  • Letters are made of shapes. By learning different shapes, young children are on the fast track towards learning letters.

Read more about how the Babies Need Words Every Day initiative from the Association of Library Service to Children (ALSC) is working to bridge the 30 Million Word Gap to support family literacy and learning across all backgrounds.



Visit Your Favorite KidLit Authors and Illustrators at the Everywhere Book Fest!

The Everywhere Book Fest is a virtual gathering of KidLit authors, illustrators, and books that will bring the book festival experience to young readers everywhere! #EverywhereBookFest is for kids, teens, families, educators, writers, and kidlit fans of any age! 

Listen to YA Fantasy authors debate the best tropes from their genre.
Watch picture book illustrators battle it out for the best doodle or middle grade authors challenge each other to see who can create the best plot on the spot.
Hear true and inspirational stories that have sparked creativity. 

There is something here for everyone to enjoy!

The festival sessions premiered over the weekend of May 1-2, but are all available to watch anytime on YouTube.