A draw and tell story for Spanish storytime

I’ve produced quite a few Spanish storytime videos for work. As I planned them out, I prioritized content that wouldn’t expire: public domain songs and rhymes. However, I also wanted to feature stories! 

So, I took time during one of my weekends to write a draw and tell story in Spanish! The idea is that the storyteller adds a line or form for each step of the story. At the end, they’ve created one cohesive image. I’ve seen guides to draw and tell stories about cats, pirates, snowmen, and more.

This draw and tell story is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical 4.0 International, meaning you are free to record a video of yourself telling this tale, or one adapted from it, so long as you give credit to me, Lindsay Delaney, and don’t sell it.

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Selector’s guide to finding local interest children’s nonfiction

Have ya’ll seen the articles that Barnes and Noble is going back to having local stores pick out the books they carry? James Daunt, the new CEO, used that same strategy to turn around Waterstones in the UK.

The public libraries near me already select items locally. Unlike Barnes and Noble, we’re not dealing with someone on the opposite coast selecting everything that goes into the library. (Except standing orders? Sort of? Not my favorite.)

That being said, when I’m developing a collection that is tailored to local interest, I do have to look for new materials in unconventional places. Many of these items aren’t going to appear in a national review source because they don’t have national appeal. (Kind of the point.) I’ve gathered the sources that have been useful for me in identifying children’s nonfiction works that are close to home.

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Things libraries can do for new parents

I’m now the parent of a baby! I’m still a children’s librarian too. Here are some of my sleep-deprived thoughts on what programs, collections, and services I’d find helpful from my local library. (Definitely not assuming that my experience generalizes to everyone else!)

The books linked in this post are affiliate links with Bookshop.org. This means if you click through and make a purchase Iā€™ll earn a commission to fund my book habit too šŸ“š

Weed the parenting collection of older editions. Safety info and recommendations change. Example? Emily Oster has a new edition of Expecting Better out for 2021. None of my local libraries have ordered a copy.

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Kids books in Spanish about camping and the outdoors

Stack of kids books in Spanish against botanical fabrics.

A young kid preparing for their first camping trip might be excited to find out what’s involved, whether that’s setting up a tent, hiking, or observing nature. This collection of picture books and early readers in Spanish is meant for just that! And, if you are planning for iRead’s “Read Beyond the Beaten Path” in 2022, you’ll find the titles fit that too.

I focused on picture books that would be fun to read aloud and early readers with high kid-appeal. While some of these titles aren’t in print any more, you hopefully will be able to find all of them between your library and favorite used bookstore.

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How to design t-shirts for your library

I’ve been rocking my Library of Things t-shirt since summer 2020.

The books linked in this post are affiliate links with Bookshop.org. This means if you click on the link and make a purchase I’ll earn a commission to fund my book habit too šŸ“š

Since summer 2020 I’ve been creating library and bookish designs over at libraryoftees.threadless.com. The project started from a desire for comfy t-shirts to wear that weren’t black. (Why are summer reading t-shirts always printed on black? Or dark navy? Have the designers ever stood outside in the middle of summer?)

But honestly, the whole process of designing and printing t-shirts has been way more accessible than I expected. It’s simple enough that I think any interested library worker could do it.

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Where to buy summer reading prize books in Spanish

child turns pages of illustrated book
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Seeing kids pick out books to keep is my favorite part of library summer reading programs. Getting the prize books? A little more challenging! It can be tricky to find Spanish titles available in bulk and at a low cost. Here are the sources I’ve rounded up for low-cost, high-interest kids books in Spanish.

Scholastic


Both Scholastic warehouse sales and Scholastic Literacy Partnerships provide access to the oodles of popular paperbacks available from Scholastic. Recent #OwnVoices titles available in Spanish through Scholastic include the musical board book Hello, Friend / Hola, Amigo by 123 AndrƩs, Saraƭ y el significado de lo genial by Saraƭ Gonzalez, and MaƱanaland by Pam MuƱoz Ryan. This is one of the best sources for chapter books and graphic novels! Many books are around $3.

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Free printable visual schedule for virtual Spanish storytime

Photo of a women holding a clipboard with visual storytime schedule icons for hola, cuento, canciĆ³n, rima, paƱuelo, maraca, and adiĆ³s.
Holding a copy of the visual schedule for Spanish storytime.

I’m a fan of incorporating a visual schedule into storytime. As Renee Grassi wrote on the ALSC blog, visual schedules can be a great universal design practice that helps kids and adults engage with storytime.

The idea is to represent each activity in storytime with a symbol. This can help participants anticipate what’s next and provides another opportunity to practice recognizing that printed words are tied to meaning.

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Research update: more support for summer book giveaways

Photo of graphic novel being held open
Photo by Van Dos Santos from Pexels

I’m always excited to see new research that can guide library staff in how to design summer reading programs. Bell et al. (2019) have published a study that reinforces what library workers know; getting books into kids’ hands is important! Read on for a summary of this welcome addition to research establishing the impact of book giveaways.

Takeaways

  • We continue to gain evidence that summer book giveaways support kids’ reading abilities.
  • In this study, kids in the books-only condition picked 12 books of their choice and gained reading fluency over a summer.
  • These promising results should be followed up with studies using random assignment and a control condition and that explicitly consider race and racism.
  • Research in practice: libraries should prioritize getting books into the hands of kids at the start of the summer to support reading fluency.
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Bilingual and Spanish board books for virtual storytime

Livestreaming, it’s possible to pull off a whole storytime made up of small-format books.

Board books are typically too small for storytime in person. But, online – where you can hold them close to the camera and give your arms the gift of a nice, lightweight book to hold – they’re a great option. Below, I recommend six books, WorldCat and publisher read-aloud policy links included.

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Five bilingual picture books for 2021 StoryWalkĀ® programs

Post updated 12/17/20 after reviewing an ARC for We Laugh Alike, 1/26/21 to add a bonus sixth title

I collaborated on three StoryWalkĀ® programs in 2020 and look forward to getting an earlier start (and sturdier signposts!) in 2021.

See my recommendations below for 2021 StoryWalkĀ® books. All have bilingual Spanish/English text.

Cover of We Laugh Alike Juntos nos reĆ­mos by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand Illustrated by Alyssa Bermudez

We Laugh Alike / Juntos nos reĆ­mos by Carmen T. Bernier-Grand and illustrated by Alyssa Bermudez. April 13, 2021. 9781623540968.

Outdoors, play, and friendship. This #OwnVoices title celebrates making friends across languages and the joy of play, music, and dance. Rather than featuring all text in English and Spanish, Bernier-Grand has each group of kids express similar thoughts in their own language, offering extra richness for dual language speakers. (I reviewed a digital ARC for this title.)

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