Elementary School Programming – ACLA Youth Services / Storytime Savers


This is a great list of “Story Time Savers”! I found it on the Allegheny County Library Association page, which I was initially directed towards in one of our readings for this course.

The list of ‘Savers’ is basically just an aggregated list of different story time themes, and book ideas for each theme. I like that the list incorporates some standard themes (ex. zoo story time, pet story time), but my favorites are the unconventional ones like Animals Nobody Loves Story Time.

For example this list includes the books:

A Pet for Petunia by Paul Schmid. Petunia is just sure she wants a skunk for a pet, until she first smells one. Illustrations are truly delightful and her ‘unfair parents’ rant is great fun to read aloud.

Aaaarrgghh! Spider! by Lydia Monks a delightful story about a spider that desperately wants to be a family’s pet. Another opportunity to scream loudly.

Guji Guji by Chih-Yuan Chen is a great story about a crocodile raised by ducks who is surprised to discover crocodiles eat ducks, but then tricks big, nasty crocodiles and protects his true family.

Some other fun themes are the Fruits and Veggies theme, and Shoe theme.

Elementary School Programming – ACLA Youth Services / Storytime Savers

Elementary School Programming – Ready, Set, Kindergarten is now on your phone!


I though that this texting initiative, offered by the Brooklyn Public Library, was a super cool early childhood resource and idea!

The initiative was developed as part of BPL’s early education program Ready, Set Kindergarten!, which is a multi-session series of stories and activities, designed to develop early learning practices.

The premise of the idea is that parents sign up to receive text messages on their phone (during times that they’re most likely to be with their child), that include tips on learning different literacy and early education skills. An example text message would be:

“Find a time to read with your child every day, at a time that works for your family.”


The library studied different text initiatives when developing the program, like

NYC Department of Education’s Pre-K On the Go.

Research surrounding educative texting programs found that “these children did better on literacy tests than children whose parents didn’t receive early literacy tips via text. The texts were reaching parents when they were likely to be with their kids and able to act on the suggestions.”

Elementary School Programming – Ready, Set, Kindergarten is now on your phone!

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Ready to Read Resource Center


Another link I found relating to early childhood collection development is to this great non-profit called Ready to Read Resource Center. Coming from a more rural community in Montana (we did have a public library – but it was small!), I was curious about other rural communities with more limited literacy resources, smaller library, and fewer public libraries, and consequently how they might look at collection development a bit differently.

There are a few different literacy organizations with similar names, but this particular one works specifically with the Alaska Public Library system! The center was born through a partnership between the Anchorage Public Library & the Alaska State Library in 2006. Their website describes their service as promoting early literacy development to Alaska’s pre-K children. They do this by loaning free reading kits to organizations (primarily libraries, but in the case of towns that don’t have a public library the kits can be leant directly to caregivers and/or parents). Within Anchorage, kits can be borrowed directly from the library, and in towns with smaller public libraries they can be requested through Interlibrary Loan. There are a few different kits available, ranging from lapsit bags with 5 or 6 books, to ‘Ready to Read’ tubs with up to 50 books.

The organization also advocates for early literacy by “giving presentations to caregivers and early childhood organizations.”

“Many rural Alaskan communities have no bookstores or libraries and those communities that do have libraries, even in urban areas, may not find adequate collections of books for infants and toddlers as these collections are expensive to maintain.” – Ready to Read Resource Center

Overall I thought this was a really interesting variation on collection development, offering an option of less permanent collections for libraries and communications with much more limited resources.

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Ready to Read Resource Center

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Board Book Buzz | Editors’ Picks


When I was researching resources for early childhood collective development, I was excited to come across this annotated list (published by School Library Journal), of 50 “buzz-worthy” board books.  It was published in July 2017, so includes primarily titles for babies, toddlers, and preschool readers that just came out in the past year.

After working in the Strand Book Store’s Children’s Department, I know just how particular parents can be about picking books out for even the littlest readers! Parents and educators look for books on a variety of topics: feelings,  animals, New York City, opposites, colors, counting… the list goes on. Interactivity (such as lift-the-flap and textures), as well as how the book reads (does it rhyme? can you sing it? is it bilingual?) are also super important factors to consider.

Which is why this list is great – the ‘annotations’ give a small summary of the book’s topic or theme, the suggested age, as well as info on how it reads and any special features! (such as this one that uses actual Picasso sketches to teach animal recognition). Also, it features books by diverse authors, as well as several bilingual choices. I think this collection of board books would be an excellent resource for anyone wanting to build a current early childhood library collection.

Collection Development for Early Childhood – Board Book Buzz | Editors’ Picks

Early Childhood + Elementary Programming – Drag Queen Story Time

I love love love the idea of NYPL’s Drag Queen Story Time. Having moved from small-town Montana to the extremely diverse + inclusive Bay Area, and now to New York City (where you can hear 5 different languages spoken in one subway car) I don’t think I can ever live somewhere again that doesn’t offer even a taste of progressive children’s programming such as this. This is an amazing way to help prevent the bullying and marginalization of LGBTQ people in our communities, starting from the earliest ages! I believe this program originated at NYPL, but it has now expanded to different cities and venues!  

NYPL describes the programming as:

“A program for children aged 3-8 that raises awareness of gender diversity, promotes self-acceptance, and builds empathy through an enjoyable literary experience. In this 45-minute program, a drag queen trained by children’s librarians reads picture books, sings songs, and leads children in a simple craft activity. Children love the bright colors, glamorous outfits, and larger-than-life personalities of the drag queen performers, but more importantly, DQSH teaches children to accept and celebrate gender diversity in themselves and others, and helps to curb bullying of LGBTQ children.”

Related Links:





Early Childhood + Elementary Programming – Drag Queen Story Time