Tag Archives: Holidays

Earth Day – April 22nd

Earth Day – April 22nd

Earth Day is celebrated every year on April 22nd. Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970. The day is meant to bring awareness to the importance of a clean sustainable environment. Last year, more than a billion people around the world celebrated Earth Day!

Did you know that you are doing something right now to celebrate Earth Day? You are using the library, where people have been reading, reducing, and reusing for centuries. Keep up the good work!

In honor of Earth Day, you can read books (fiction and non-fiction) about the care and keeping of the Earth.


Professor Noah's SpaceshipProfessor Noah’s Spaceship As the forest begins to change, the animals and birds, no longer happy there, fly away in Professor Noah’s amazing spaceship.


The LoraxThe Lorax – The Once-ler describes the results of the local pollution problem.


Big Bear Hug – Big Bear Hug presents an environmental story about a big bear who loves to hug everything until he meets a human who is about to chop down a tree and must make a decision on how to save his forest.


The Earth BookThe Earth Book – Simple text and illustrations show how children can help protect the Earth.


Kids Who Are Changing the WorldKids Who Are Changing the World – Profiles forty-five children around the world who are taking steps to help the environment through fund-raising, public demonstrations, and creating activist art, and includes suggestions on how readers can get involved.


Leaving Your MarkLeaving Your Mark – Human activity often leaves a trail of harmful carbon behind that directly impacts our planet. This informative book describes how every individual produces a “carbon footprint” by using energy made by burning fossil fuels and by creating waste from packaging that gets thrown away. Find out how to measure your own carbon footprint and see what effect you are having on Earth.


Sophie Bennett Saves the PlanetSophie Bennett Saves the Planet – Girl v the World is a funny, inspiring and heart-warming series about thirteen year-old girls taking on the world. Sophie Bennett is known for being kind of quirky. She cares about animals and the environment way more than the other kids at school do. But sometimes it’s hard being the one who always speaks up. Will Sophie ever fit in? Or is it better to stand out?


FlushFlush – With their father jailed for sinking a river boat, Noah Underwood and his younger sister, Abbey, must gather evidence that the owner of this floating casino is emptying his bilge tanks into the protected waters around their Florida Keys home.


A Bird on Water StreetA Bird on Water Street – A Bird on Water Street is a coming of age story about Jack, a boy growing up in a Southern Appalachian town environmentally devastated by a century of poor copper-mining practices and pollution. Jack is opposed to the mine where so many of his relatives have died, but how can he tell that to his Dad who wants him to follow in the family trade? Jack just wants his dad safe and the land returned to its pre-mining glory with trees, birds, frogs, and nature—like he’s learning about in school. After Jack’s uncle is killed in a mining accident and the Company implements a massive layoff, the union organizes and the miners go on strike. It seems Jack’s wish is coming true. But the cost may be the ruin of his home and everything he loves.


Bayou MagicBayou Magic – Visiting her grandmother in the Louisiana bayou, ten-year-old Maddy begins to realize that she may be the only sibling to carry on the gift of her family’s magical legacy.


Me and Marvin GardensMe and Marvin Gardens – Obe Devlin spends a lot of his time cleaning up the creek that runs through what little is left of his family’s once extensive farmland, and worrying about what the developers are doing nearby, and the pollution it is causing—but one day he finds a strange creature by his creek that eats plastic, and soon the animal he calls Marvin Gardens becomes his personal secret, which he believes needs to be protected from pretty much everybody.


Books recommended by: Kristen Williams, guest blogger and former Indianapolis school teacher.

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Christmas Around the World

Christmas Around the World

Websites:


Music:

Christmas Around the World Pinterest Board: Freegal Christmas Around the World Links to several albums of Christmas music from around the world – free music you can download or stream with your library card! Directions Freegal Headphones 150

Traditions:

Christmas in Many Cultures Christmas Around the World Christmas Around the World 2 Christmas Traditions Around the World
Joy to the World Christmas Stories from Around the World Joy to the World Christmas Around the World 3 Merry Christmas Everywhere
Christmas Crafts From Around the World Craft It Up Christmas Around the World

Books:

A King James Christmas A King James Christmas : Biblical selections with illustrations from around the world.
Papa's Christmas Gift Depicts happenings in countries around the world on Christmas Eve, 1822, while Clement Clarke Moore gives to his family the first reading ever of his poem “A Visit from Saint Nicholas.”
The Bear Families' World Tour of Christmas Mama and Papa Bear and their four children have a world tour Christmas, visiting friends and family in China, Australia, and other countries, and sharing special holiday traditions in each place.
Jingle Bells Presents the words of the familiar Christmas song, plus extra verses and brief descriptions of the Christmas traditions of Mexico, Sweden, the Philippines, Poland, Italy, and Kenya.

Africa

12 Days of Christmas in Africa Sets the traditional Christmas carol in Africa, using a combination of text and rebuses. Includes author’s note about some of the African traditions depicted.
The Night Before Christmas in Africa Inspired by the classic English poem, “A Visit from St. Nicholas,” presents a similar tale in which Father Christmas arrives on a donkey cart to an African family with gifts of chickens, toys, and a very special present.
A Stork in a Boabab Tree Set in Africa during the Christmas season, this is the story of a village preparing for a celebration – the birth of a child. The story is inspired by the traditional carol The Twelve Days of Christmas, the gifts are: 1 stork in a baobab tree, 2 thatched huts, 3 woven baskets, 4 market traders, 5 bright khangas, 6 women pounding, 7 children playing, 8 wooden carvings, 9 grazing goats, 10 drummers drumming, 11 dancers dancing and 12 storytellers.

Australia

Christmas in Australia Describes the celebration of Christmas in Australia, including recipes, craft projects, and elements of the indigenous culture.
Kangaroo for Christmas Kathryn’s new pet kangaroo hops into a big pan of Christmas taffy cooling on Grandma’s porch. Australia
Christmas Wombat Christmas from a wombat’s point of view, including competition for the carrots children have left out for Santa’s reindeer. Australia

Austria

Silent Night the Song and Its Story Tells how the well-known Christmas carol, “Silent Night,” first came to be written and performed in Austria in the early 1800s.
The Taste of Snow When winter arrives in the Austrian Alps, eleven-year-old Nicole Kinders is given a magic candy cane by Boznik, the shopkeeper, but after her first taste, it seems the whole world becomes more colorful, more delicious, and more dangerous.

Canada

The Huron Carol An illustrated edition of the seventeenth-century Canadian Christmas carol that places the Nativity story in a Huron Indian setting.
The Flying Canoe On Christmas Eve, six French-Canadian trappers meet a mysterious stranger who gives them the gift of a trip to their homes in Montreal, if only they agree not to speak until they cross their own thresholds.

England

Katie's London Christmas When Katie and Jack wake up on Christmas Eve to hear someone sneezing, they discover Father Christmas, who has a cold, and offer to help him on his rounds as he travels around London.

France

Christmas in France Discusses how people in France celebrate Christmas, identifying traditional symbols, decorations, presents, foods, and customs associated with the holiday.
Joyeux Noel Lyrics to familiar Christmas songs in English and French with colorful illustrations and information about French Christmas traditions–also in English and French.
Shooting at the Stars the Christmas Truce of 1914 In 1914 France, a British soldier writes to his mother about the strange events of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, when German and Allied soldiers met on neutral ground to share songs, food, and fun. Includes historical notes and glossary.
A Chanukah Noel A young Jewish girl is fascinated by the traditions of Christmas when her family moves to a small town in France.

Germany

Christmas in Germany Discusses how people in Germany celebrate Christmas, identifying traditional symbols, decorations, presents, foods, and customs associated with the holiday.
Fröhliche Weihnachten Lyrics to familiar Christmas songs in English and German with colorful illustrations and information about German Christmas traditions–also in English and German.
Christmas From Heaven Presents the story of how an American pilot participated in the Berlin Airlift and decided to drop candy for the German children caught behind the post-World-War II Soviet blockade, an effort intended to heal the wounds of war.
Cobweb Christmas Long ago in Germany, an old woman cleans her house and decorates her Christmas tree, hoping that this year she will witness some special Christmas Eve magic.

Ireland

The Wee Christmas Cabin A tinker’s child who grows up helpng everyone in her Irish village is rewarded in her old age with a cabin built by fairies on Christmas Eve.
Smudge In Ireland in the Middle Ages, young Brother Cuthbert, known for making mistakes and giving up easily, is chosen through a miscommunication to serve as scribe for an illuminated manuscript of the Nativity story, through which the Abbot hopes to make the monastery famous.
Angela and the Baby Jesus At Christmastime, six-year-old Angela takes the baby Jesus from the cold church manger to her warm house in Limerick, Ireland. Based on a childhood story told by the author’s mother.

Italy

Christsmas in Italy Discusses how people in Italy celebrate Christmas, identifying traditional symbols, decorations, presents, foods, and customs associated with the holiday.
Buon Natale Lyrics to familiar Christmas songs in English and Italian with colorful illustrations and information about Italian Christmas traditions–also in English and Italian.
Bambinelli Sunday An illustrated story about Bambinelli Sunday, an Italian Catholic family tradition in which hand-crafted babies (“bambinelli”) destined for the Nativity scene at home are blessed by the pope in a public celebration.
The Legend of Old Befana An Italian Christmas tale describing the heartening encounter between a group of royal men looking for the Baby King and an eccentric old woman who, after first turning them away, later bakes them cookies.
Nonna Tell Me a Story Italian-American chef Lidia Bastianich shares her memories of the Christmases she spent in Italy, where she learned to cook with her Nonna Rosa, and provides holiday recipes and decorating ideas.
Merry Christmas Strega Nona Strega Nona returns with her bumbling assistant, Big Anthony, and Bambolona, the baker’s daughter, in time for the big Christmas Eve feast. Italy

Japan

Tree of Cranes While a young Japanese boy recovers from an illness, his mother folds origami paper into beautiful silver cranes, decorates a small pine tree, and tells him all about her childhood in America and about the joyous holiday of Christmas.

Kenya

A Kenya Christmas Ten-year-old Juma and his aunt Aida plan to surprise his Kenyan village with an appearance by Father Christmas and find that they themselves are surprised.

Latin America

Twas Nochebuena Explores Latin American traditions for celebrating Christmas Eve in a text that combines English and Spanish words and follows the rhythm of Clement Moore’s “The Night Before Christmas”.
A Pinata in a Pine Tree In this adaptation of the folk song “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” friends exchange such gifts as a piñata and “cuatro luminarias.” Includes pronunciation and glossary of Spanish words and a description of Christmas foods and other holiday traditions from different Latin American countries.

Mexico

Feliz Navidad Lyrics to familiar Christmas songs in English and Spanish with colorful illustrations and information about Mexican Christmas traditions–also in English and Spanish.
The Legend of the Poinsettia When Lucida is unable to finish her gift for the Baby Jesus in time for the Christmas procession, a miracle enables her to offer the beautiful flower we now call the poinsettia. Mexico
Nine Days to Christmas Ceci anxiously awaits her first posada, the special Mexican Christmas party, and the opportunity to select a piñata for it. Caldecott Medal Winner, 1960.
Pablos Christmas When his father goes to America to find a job that pays more than toymaking, young Pablo has to act as the man of the house, protecting their small farm and trying to keep his mother and sisters from worrying. Mexico
Carlos Light the Farolito When his parents and grandfather are late on Christmas Eve, it’s up to Carlos to take over his grandfather’s role in the traditional Mexican reenactment of the Nativity called Las Posadas.
When Christmas Feels Like Home After moving from a small village in Mexico to a town in the United States, Eduardo is sure it will never feel quite like home. The other children don’t speak his language and they do not play fútbol. His family promises him that he will feel right at home by the time Christmas comes along, when “your words float like clouds from your mouth” and “trees will ride on cars.” Eduardo discovers the United States is not so different from Latin America and home is wherever family is.

Nigeria

An African Christmas It’s Christmastime, and Afam has decided to create and dance his own Mmo, or masquerade, just like the big celebratory Mmos he sees performed at festivals. But each time he starts collecting things to make his costume, family preparations for Christmas — haircuts, visiting the tailor, a church service, a trip to their village — get in the way. Will Afam ever get to perform his Mmo? Nigeria

Norway

Christmas in Norway Discusses how people in Norway celebrate Christmas, identifying traditional symbols, decorations, presents, foods, and customs associated with the holiday.
Sister Bear Halva is traveling with her trained bear to visit the King of Denmark (Norway) when they stop for the night at a cottage where, they learn, a pack of trolls is about to make its annual Christmas Eve visit, causing trouble and making a big mess. Includes author’s note about the story’s origins.
Whos That Knocking on Christmas Eve A boy from Finnmark and his ice bear help scare away some hungry trolls so that Kyri and her father can enjoy their Christmas Eve meal. Norway

Panama

A Christmas Surprise for Chabelita Living with her grandparents after her mother moves to a distant town, Chabelita memorizes her mother’s favorite poem from childhood and plans to recite it at a Christmas pageant. Panama

Russia

Baboushka and the Three Kings An old Russian woman who was too busy to travel with the Wise Men to find the Child now searches endlessly for Him each Christmas season. Caldecott Medal Winner, 1961
The Miracle of Saint Nicholas When Alexi learns from his babuskha that a Russian village church has been closed for sixty years, the resourceful young boy decides to prepare it for a Christmas miracle.
Baboushka An old woman who was too busy to travel with the Wise Men to find the Child now searches endlessly for Him each Christmas season. Russia
The Tale of Baboushka When Baboushka hosts three men, they tell her that they are taking gifts to a king of love, and she is determined to go and give gifts to the king, but first she needs to get her house in order. Russia
Baboushka 2 While traveling, Babushka gives her gifts for the Christ child away and thinks she has nothing left to give the baby, only to discover that everything she gave away, she also gave to him. Russia

South Africa

What's Cooking Jamela Jamela is responsible for fattening up the chicken intended for Christmas dinner, but instead she gives it a name and makes it her friend. South Africa

Sweden

The Tomtes Christmas Porridge Every Christmas Eve, the family put out porridge for the tomtes to thank them for their help around the farm. But this year they forget, and Papa tomte will be angry if he finds out. So Mama tomte and the children hatch a cunning plan. Sweden
Flicka In Sweden, while visiting their aunt and uncle at Christmas, triplets Flicka, Ricka, and Dicka are trying out their new ice skates when their dog Mike and new friend Bertie fall through thin ice, and the girls must save them.
Christmas in Sweden Describes the customs, songs, foods, and activities associated with the celebration of Christmas in Sweden.
Pippi Longstockings After Christmas Party Pippi Longstocking’s after-Christmas party includes such activities as undecorating the Christmas tree, opening presents, and sledding. First Published in 1950 in Sweden.

Turkey

The Legend of Saint Nicholas by Demi Recounts pivotal events in the history and life of Saint Nicholas, including how he came to be associated with Christmas and Santa Claus. Myra, Present Day Turkey
Santa Who Describes the origins and evolution of Santa Claus, from the Turkish Saint Nicholas to the jolly, red-suited Santa of today. Also discusses similar legendary figures in other cultures.

Ukraine

Christmas in Ukraine Describes the celebration of Christmas in Ukraine; includes sections on native songs, recipes, and fun-to-do crafts appropriate to the holiday.
A Christmas Spiders Miracle A poor peasant woman who has no money for gifts or a special meal for her children gets help from a kindly mother spider on Christmas. Ukraine
The Spiders Gift Katrusya’s family cannot afford Christmas, but they cut a smalls pine tree in the forest, decorate it with buttons, and, when baby spiders hatch in its branches, they especially enjoy the silvery webs that appear. Ukraine

United States

The Twelve Days of Christmas in Indiana Noah writes a letter home each of the twelve days he spends exploring the state of Indiana at Christmastime, as his cousin Darcy shows him everything from the world’s largest Christmas tree to the Indanapolis Motor Speedway. Includes facts about Indiana.
The Twelve Days of Christmas in Georgia Jacob writes a letter home each of the twelve days he spends exploring Georgia at Christmastime, as his cousin Ava shows him everything from a brown thrasher in a live oak tree to twelve bouncing kangaroos. Includes facts about Georgia.
The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree Ruthie and her mother wonder how they will fulfill their obligation of getting the perfect Christmas tree to the town for the holiday celebration, since Papa has left the Appalachian area to go to war.
A Child's Christmas in New England Draws on memories of Christmases from mid-twentieth-century New England, describing family members and friends who share holiday treats, enjoy sled rides, and listen for the sound of reindeer hooves on the roof.
Lighthouse Christmas Christmas is two days away, but Frances and her little brother Peter, who recently moved with their father to a lighthouse on an isolated island, fear that they will have no treats, no music, and no visit from Santa. Includes facts about the Flying Santa Service.
An Orange for Frankie Frankie and his eight brothers and sisters learn lessons about giving, family, and tradition during a snowy Michigan Christmas long ago.
Just in Time for Christmas A young boy, living in rural Kentucky, looks forward to the annual Christmas festivities, especially the traditional family cream candy; but, when his favorite dog disappears, he comes to realize that tradition and family have a deeper meaning.
Circle of Wonder a Native American Christmas Story A mute Indian child has an extraordinary experience one Christmas when, following a figure who seems to be his beloved dead grandfather, he becomes part of a circle in which he, animals, nature, and all the world join in a moment of peace and good will. Native American

United States: Asian American

Yoon and the Christmas Mitten Yoon, a Korean American, is excited to hear about Santa Claus and Christmas at her school, but her family tells her that such things are not part of their Korean tradition.

United States: Hispanic American

Las Posadas Follows a Hispanic American family in a small New Mexican community as they prepare for and celebrate the nine-day religious festival which occurs just before Christmas.
The Santero's Miracle With Christmas only days away, it snows so heavily that Jacobo the wood carver and his visiting grandson are afraid the roads will not be cleared in time for the rest of the family to come from the city, and that a sick neighbor will not get the help he needs. New Mexico
The Twelve Days of Christmas a Pinata for a Pinon Tree Provides a Southwestern spin on a Christmas classic, enhanced with bright illustrations, musical notation, and a recipe for a New Mexican holiday cookie–the bizcochitos!
Charro Claus One Christmas Eve, Santa Claus asks his cousin Pancho to help him deliver toys to the boys and girls along the Texas-Mexico border, and when he agrees, Santa magically transforms him into Charro Claus.
El Regalo de mi Abuela The story of a Christmas holiday in Spanish Harlem that young Eric spends with his grandmother. After they prepare their traditional Puerto Rican celebration, Eric and Grandma visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art for a school project, where he sees a painting by Diego Velasquez and realizes for the first time that he could be an artist when he grows up. Grandma witnesses his fascination, and presents Eric with the perfect Christmas gift–a sketchbook and colored pencils–to use in his first steps toward becoming an artist.
Uno Dos Tres Posada A little girl guides the reader through each step of a posada, a Hispanic holiday tradition celebrated on the nine nights before Christmas.
La Noche Buena While spending Christmas with her Cuban American grandmother in Miami, Florida, young Nina misses her usual New England holiday but enjoys learning about the foods and other traditions her father knew as a child.
The Farolitos of Christmas With her father away fighting in World War II and her grandfather too sick to create the traditional luminaria, Luz helps create farolitos, little lanterns, for their Christmas celebration instead. New Mexico

CDs:

Christmas Around the World CD
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Happy National Chocolate Day!

Happy National Chocolate Day!

October 28th is National Chocolate Day, just in time for trick-or-treating! Here are all kind of mysteries and adventures featuring chocolately deliciousness and some non-fiction books to learn where chocolate actually comes from and who has developed the best recipes for this universally loved treat.

Stories:

 

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The Candymakers and the Great Chocolate Chase The Candy Factory Mystery This Book Is Not Good For You
The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop Chocolate Fever The Chocolate Touch Max and Maddy and the Chocolate Money Mystery
Clara the Chocolate Fairy Cam Jansen and the Chocolate Fudge Mystery Chocolate Dreams The Chocolate Rose
Theo Stilton and the Chocolate Sabotage My Chocolate Year The Chocolate Phantom The Chocolate-Covered Contest

Non-Fiction:

The Mars Family Blue Frog the Legend of Chocolate Holy Mole The Sweet Story of Hot Chocolate
From Cocoa Bean to Chocolate Choc Full of Chocolate Chocolate a Sweet History A Chocolate Bar
Beans to Chocolate Inside Charlie's Chocolate Factory Candy Bomber Milton Hershey More Than Chocolate
Who Was Milton Hershey Milton Hershey Milton Hershey 2 The Chocolate Chip Cookie Queen

Recommended by: Janet Spaulding, Selection Services

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Christmas

Christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Websites

Favorite Christmas Stories:

Arthur's Christmas The Best Christmas Pageant Ever A Charlie Brown Christmas A Christmas Carol
Gift of the Magi How the Grinch Stole Christmas Miracle on 34th Street Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree
Night Before Christmas Nutcracker Polar Express Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
Santa's Book of Names The Story of Holly and Ivy The Twelve Days of Christmas  Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree

Christmas History, Crafts and Customs:

The Story of Christmas from the King James Bible Christmas in the Big House, Christmas in the Quarters The Christmas Menorah How a Town Fought Hate Franklin and Winston a Christmas That Changed the World
Silver Packages Truce The Day the Soldiers Stopped Fighting Christmas Crafts Christmas Unwrapped
How to Draw Christmas Things Legend of Saint Nicholas Legends of Santa Claus Merry Christmas Activity Book
Merry Christmas Everywhere Reindeer Crunch and Other Christmas Recipes Super Simple Holiday Treats Holiday Papercraft
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