December Parent Zone

Read a Book!

December is Read a New Book Month.  Good thing we’re all getting ready for Santa to come down the chimney and bring presents to all those good girls and boys!  ‘Cause what better gift is there for your children than the exciting world books have to offer?
The library gets new books in every week, so even if you can’t always afford to drive to Barnes and Noble and buy the latest good reads, most will be available at the library.  Whether you shop for used books, buy through your child’s school, or continue to check out your favorites at the library, you’ll be glad to know that a book is the gift that keeps giving…and giving…and giving.
You can build your own home library by:

  • Designating different spots for library or other borrowed books and your own books
  • Checking in with your local library or school library to see what is new
  • Asking your children what kinds of books are popular with their peers
  • Recommending books to be given for birthdays and holidays
  • Shopping at a thrift store, used book store, or garage sale
  • Trading books with friends or family to keep the selection new and exciting
  • Stopping by the monthly Friends of the Library Book Sale, which offers books at extremely affordable prices

So read or give a new book this month—whether it is new from the store or just new to your children—and you will be giving the best gift of all to those you love the most this Christmas season.

Other Links to Explore

The Friends of the Mansfield/Richland County Public Library

Main Street Books

Barnes & Noble—Mansfield

Best Children’s Books of 2009

2009 Notable Children’s Books

Best Illustrated Children’s Books of 2009

December Craft
‘Gourd’geous Gourds
Use your imagination to transform a gourd into a holiday table centerpiece.
You will need a glue gun or tacky glue, jiggle eyes, feathers, leaves, scraps of material, paint and some gourd books for ideas.  The reference department has lots of gourd ideas in the craft section (745.5…)  Have fun creating your centerpiece!

New Holiday Books

Christmas by Martha E.H. Rustad
Check catalog

Tyrannoclaus by Janet Lawler
Check catalog

A Pinata in a Pine Tree: a Latino Twelve Days of Christmas by Pat Mora
Check catalog

A Cars Christmas by Melissa Lagonegro
Check catalog

Where Is Baby’s Christmas Present?: A Lift-The-Flap Board Book by Karen Katz
Check catalog

I Love Christmas by Anna Walker
Check catalog

Christmas in Many Cultures by Martha E. H. Rustad
Check catalog

The True Gift: A Christmas Story by Patricia MacLachlan
Check catalog


Christmas Time

See the snowflakes falling
(wriggle fingers like dancing snowflakes)
See the candle glow
(hold index finger up like a candle)
See the wreath upon the door
(form wreath shape with fingers)
It’s Christmas time, I know!

Five Little Bells

Five little bells, hanging in a row
(hold up five fingers)
The first one said, “Ring me slow.”
(hold up one finger)
The second one said, “Ring me fast.”
(hold up two fingers)
The third one said, “Ring me last.”
(hold up three fingers)
The fourth one said, “I’m like a chime.”
(hold up four fingers)
The fifth one said, “Ring us all at Christmas time.”
(Hold up five fingers)

Gingerbread Man
Stir a bowl of gingerbread, smooth and spicy brown
(pretend to stir)
Roll it with the rolling pin, up and down
(make rolling motions)
Take a cookie cutter and make some little men
(use imaginary cookie cutter and cut shapes)
Put them in the oven ’til half past ten
(pretend to slide cookie sheet into oven)


“A Christmas Together” by John Denver and the Muppets


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