Category Archives: Staff Picks

Staff Pick: Creating Winter Crafts

Staff Pick: Creating Winter Crafts

Creating Winter Crafts

Provides step-by-step instructions, tips, and techniques for creating decorative craft projects for the winter season, especially for the winter holidays of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s Eve and Day.

This book begins with a short paragraph description of each winter holiday, which includes Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s Day. To prepare for craft making, a helpful listing of various symbols and colors that represent each holiday are included. The instructions for creating each craft are very detailed and include pictures to guide in the construction. Crafts are geared towards older school aged children. Two crafts require spray paint and several crafts require unique items, that one may have to purchase in order to assemble the craft, for example “wire wreath ring”, “wooden skewer” and “tapestry needle”. I would recommend for experienced crafters and those needing crafts from various winter holidays.

Recommended by:  Kimberly Anderson, West Indianapolis Branch Library

 

 

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Staff Pick: Tua and the Elephant

Staff Pick: Tua and the Elephant

Tua and the Elephant

In Chiang Mai, Thailand, nine-year-old Tua releases an abused elephant from its chains–can she complete the rescue by getting it to an elephant refuge without being caught herself?

Imagine rescuing an Elephant from cruel owners. What next? Where can you hide an elephant? Where can an elephant be safe and live a happy life? In Thailand, where Tua lives the safe place is an elephant sanctuary, and the hiding place is her Auntie Orchid’s house. The mission is serious, but there are plenty of laughs along the way. Imagine hiding Pohn Pohn the elephant in a house; now imagine trying to turn Pohn Pohn around to get out of the house. LOL. With the cruel mahouts (that’s the name of an elephant trainer) in hot pursuit, Tua and Pohn Pohn have an adventure, meeting many sweet and funny characters on their journey, ending with a home for more than just Pohn Pohn at the elephant sanctuary. Learn things you never knew about elephants and enjoy an adventure with plenty of fun thrown it.

Recommended by: Barb Obergfell, Outreach Services

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Staff Pick: Princess Tales and Nursery Stories from Around the World

Staff Pick: Princess Tales and Nursery Stories from Around the World

Princess Stories from Around the World

You may know Cinderella, Snow White, and Sleeping Beauty, but have you ever read about The Lemon Princess, Kate Crackernuts, or Mirabella?  There are retellings of some familiar tales, and some brand new stories that will delight and amaze readers of all ages in Princess Stories From Around the World.  The beautiful, soft illustrations only add to the wonder of these stories, and of course, the cover sparkles!

Nursery Tales Around the World

Nursery Tales Around the World includes small stories from all corners of the world!  Runaway food from Norway, incredible eaters from India and Zaire, big bad wolves from the US, and slowpokes from China and Greece.  This fun collection also includes Native American tales, as well as some familiar stories from Aesop and Mother Goose.  A fun read for all ages!

Recommended by: Beth Pintal, Nora Branch

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Staff Pick: The SOS File

Staff Pick: The SOS File

The SOS File

The students in Mr. Magro’s class submit stories for the SOS file about their biggest emergencies, and then they read them aloud for extra credit. Young Hoosier Book Award, 2008-2009, 4-6 Nominee

Children looking for humors short stories to take a break from rigorous homework will find The SOS File by Betsy Byars, Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers the answer. Throughout the school year teacher, Mr. Margo asked his students to write a short story about an emergency to receive extra credit in the class. Twelve students take him up on his offer and all but one receives extra credit.

Children will love the twelve wonderfully written funny stories. My favorite is the ¬Chocolate SOS were the writer must sale candy bars for his baseball team only to have to borrow forty dollars from his mother because he eat the candy bars. Find out if his mother loans him the money and read the one story that the student did not receive extra credit for writing. Sit back and enjoy these humors stories, you will sure have a belly ache from laughing so hard.

Recommended by: Denyce Malone, Flanner House Branch

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Staff Pick: I Am a Taxi

Staff Pick: I Am a Taxi

I Am a Taxi

Living with his family in a prison in Bolivia due to his parents’ convictions for drug trafficking, twelve-year-old Diego does his best to live a normal life, but when his mother receives additional fines, Diego risks everything to earn quick money.

I read this novel because of the odd title. Diego, age 12, lives in a prison in Cochabamba, Bolivia. His parents, falsely accused of smuggling drugs, must serve out a 16 year sentence. Diego, however, can come and go; he attends school and earns money as a “taxi,” running errands for other inmates. After a stroke of bad luck, Diego is forced to look for additional ways to make money. His friend, Mando, convinces him “big money” will come from working for foreign men deep in the jungle. The men turn out to be cocaine smugglers and the boys become slaves in the coca pits, stomping coca leaves into a paste that will become cocaine. Attempting escape, Mando dies and Diego barely escapes with his life. The ending of the book is as odd as the title, but the fast pace will keep readers glued to the text, eager to find out if Diego ever sees his family again. I learned a great deal about prison life, “taxi” work and the production of cocaine and plan to read the sequel, Sacred Leaf, very soon.

Recommended by: Nancy Poppleton, Glendale Branch

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