Blue ribbons, carnival rides, cotton candy, and corn dogs... Its fair time! The Missouri State Fair takes place on August 7-17, 2008 in Sedalia. Get in the mood with these books that are fun for kids and parents alike.
Blue-Ribbon Henry by Mary Calhoun, illustrated with watercolor and pencil, tells the story of a Siamese cat, Henry, who visits the county fair. He encounters a charging pig and helps a lost girl find her mother, winning a “Pet of the Show” award for his bravery.
A fun loving hen visits a fair for the first time, mistaking it for a farm, in Minerva Louise at the Fairby Janet Morgan Stoeke. This bright and colorful picture book depicts Minerva Louise as she explores the fairground with wonder and adventure.
Rural America and a town fair set the backdrop for That Kookoory! by Margaret Walden Froehlich. Kookery the rooster excitedly travels to the fair as a hungry weasel follows behind. Colorful pen and ink illustrations delight.
What inventions have you concocted in your basement? August is National Inventors Month, an event launched by the United Inventors Association of the USA, Inventors Digest, and the Academy of Applied Science in 1995 to help guide new inventors, inspire creativity, and promote the image of independent inventors. Read about some of the inventions that changed history and the people who created these innovations or take a break with a few novels featuring inventions in fiction.
With over 300 photographs, The Book of Inventions by Ian Harrison takes a trip through innovation history. Each invention receives a two-page spread and includes information about the inventor, as well as a photograph of the invention in use. The chapters are divided thematically, including “Around the House,” “At the Doctor’s,” “Eating and Drinking,” among others so you can learn all about the hair dryer, disposable syringes, and much more.
On August 28, 2008 at the Plaza Branch, Tom Bloch discussed his new book, Stand For the Best: What I Learned After Leaving My Job as CEO of H&R Block to Become a Teacher and Founder of an Inner-City Charter School. Explore a few books or movies about urban education, the charter school movement, or how to make your own career change.
Stand For the Best: What I Learned After Leaving My Job as CEO of H&R Block to Become a Teacher and Founder of an Inner-City Charter School
By Thomas M. Bloch
Twelve years ago, Bloch was CEO of H&R Block, the world's largest tax-preparation firm. After much soul-searching, he resigned to become a math teacher in an impoverished inner-city school in Kansas City. Bloch tells what it was like struggling to make a difference to his students.
The U.S. government established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) on July 29, 1958. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of this agency with these histories, memoirs and novels that depict the work of NASA, its astronauts, and space travel.
Begin with the awe-inspiring images published in America in Space: NASA's First Fifty Years edited by Steven J. Dick. With over 400 photographs, this coffee-table sized book chronicles the history of NASA visually. You’ll see the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo missions of the 1960s, images from the Space Shuttle era, and much more.
The twelve robot spacecrafts launched in the 1970s by NASA yielded an amazing amount of information about our solar system. Beyond the Moon: A Golden Age of Planetary Exploration, 1971-1978 by Robert S. Kraemer details the story of those at NASA who made this happen.
This Sunday, July 27, 2008 celebrate Parents' Day with a humorous and heart-felt memoir about parenthood or read the warm reflections of adult children writing about their mothers and fathers.
Writer and single mother Anne Lamott candidly chronicles her first year of motherhood in Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son's First Year. With humor, she shares the ups and downs of parenting with the help of her eccentric friends and family.
Daniel Glick writes about life as a single father after an unexpected divorce in Monkey Dancing: A Father, Two Kids, and a Journey to Witness the World's Vanishing Wonders. With his 13-year old son and 9-year old daughter, environmental reporter Glick travels the world for six months from Africa to Australia. Together, they view the natural world and cope with the changes in their lives.
Enjoy a few novels set in the Renaissance before the Kansas City Renaissance Festival starts on August 30, 2008. From mysteries to romances to art-inspired works of fiction, authors depict this influential era to great effect in these books.
Renaissance era Venice provides the backdrop for the novel Dirge for a Doge by Elizabeth Eyre. Signor Sigismondo, with the help of his faithful servant Benno, investigates the aristocrat Niccolo Ermolin’s murder. The list of suspects is long, more corpses appear, and a secret diary seems to hold some of the answers.
For a literary mystery that delves into the architecture and landscape of the Renaissance, try The Savage Garden by Mark Mills. Cambridge student Adam Banting travels to Tuscany in 1958 to study a famous Renaissance garden at the Villa Docci estate. He discovers a connection between the garden and two deaths: one in 1548, the other during World War II.
Finally, you say! The teens of KC now have a library web page just for them. Check back often to view updates and add your content to the page.
The Blackboard Jungle (1955)
High school students in a gritty urban school move to the beat of Bill Haley’s "Rock Around the Clock" in what today seems a nostalgic look at urban youth. Glenn Ford stars as the teacher committed to his messy job. (Not Rated)
Ask a librarian to help you find magnificent books about hogs, sows, piglets, endangered babirusas, and boars.
Read this Hog Blog entry to see my list of favorite pig books.
Yours with snorts,
What is mud, anyway? Mud can be wet soil, but the best, squishiest, ozziest mud puddles are wet clay. Clay is made of minerals (rocks are made of minerals, too).
I love mud. It's a sunscreen so I don't burn my nose or tail. Mosquitoes can't bite me. But best of all, mud can be made into mud pies, mud cupcakes, and mud strudel. I can make mud paintings and mud sculptures. People make houses and buildings out of mud. Adobe bricks are made of sand, clay, sticks, and straw. The bricks dry and harden in the sun. In ancient times, large temples and even whole cities were made from mud bricks.
A whole town is too much for a pig--but I'd really like a mud igloo someday.
Yours with snorts,