Picture Books Introduced to me by my Granddaughter

To wrap up my series on picture books I wanted to talk about some new picture books that have been introduced to me by my granddaughter.

While I love the books that I grew up with and they will also hold a very special place in my heart I love getting to learn about new characters and stories by reading to her.

Here are some of our new favorites!


The pout-pout fish by Deborah Diesen

My no, no, no day! by Rebecca Patterson

Don’t let the pigeon drive the bus!

Llama llama mad at mama

Our Staff’s Favorite Picture Books

PattyPetite Rouge” a cajun red riding hood by Mike Artell

Amy – Before Morning by Joyce Sidman

Janet  – Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion

Kim – Little Rabbits’ Wedding by Garth Williams

PeggyBlueberries For Sal by Robert McCloskey

AshtonRumpelstiltskin’s Daughter -Diane Stanley and Jacob Grimm

Cathy – Golden Book version of the Gingerbread Man, illustrated by Bonnie and Bill Rutherford.

My Favorite Pictures Books: A note from the Director

There are quite a few picture books in our collection. And they are wonderful.

But today I wanted to tell you about some of my favorites and to whom I’ve read them too over the course of my career at the Aurora Public Library District.

First, we are going to start with my My Great Aunt Arizona by Gloria Houston.

This book is about a teacher and her influence over generations of school children. This is a favorite of mine to read at teacher retirement parties in honor of the impact these teachers have had on countless children.

And since we are in the fall season one of my all-time favorite fall books is The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward

I love reading this to my family during the fall season.

While we are talking about seasons I love to read Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco during the spring thunderstorm season.

This book is all about helping little ones understand how thunder storms work and why they aren’t as scary as they seem through a grandmother helping her granddaughter bake a cake.

Next I want to tell you about Stone Soup by Jon J. Muth.

This book is all about community and coming together to help during a time of hardship. Together the community builds a soup from their compiled foods rather than keeping everything to themselves and helps rekindle humanity in their community after the war. While it seems like a heavy topic for a picture book it brings inspiration and truth together to help teach these concepts.

Now for one of my all time favorites. Oh the Places You’ll Go by Dr. Seuss.

This  is one of my favorite graduation gifts to give. It talks about the big adventure high school graduates are about to start and provides advice for dealing with the changes that are coming.

These next titles are all classics that I read to my own girls when they were growing up,  and like them I fell in love with the characters, stories, and illustrations.

Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, what do you see? by Bill Martin

Curious George by H.A. Rey

The Babar Series by Jean  &  Laurent De Brunhoff


Wheels on the Bus by Raffi

And the Berenstain Bears Series by Mike Berenstain

Now these aren’t even ALL of my favorites but I did have to cut it off somewhere or you would be here all day. Let me know in the comments what YOUR favorite picture book is!

Why Picture Books are so Important to Readers of all Ages

Hey there! This week we are kicking off a blog post series all about Picture Books. November is National Picture Book month and they hold a special place in my heart. So I’ve got some awesome posts lined up for you. And today is the first one.

So, why are Picture Books so important? Not only to little ones but to adults as well?

Below I outline some of the reasons I feel Picture Books are so important for all ages.

Excellent Story Telling

Did you know that Pictures Books have to tell their entire story & include their illustrations in only 64 pages??

Does that seem crazy to you?

People who write for Picture Books have big shoes to fill in only a few pages. So they are excellent storytellers. And they are beautiful examples of literature that need our appreciation even though they are written for young readers in mind.

Reading Concepts

The introduction of reading concepts to young readers is a topic that is near and dear to my heart. I have spent most of my career supporting programs for early literacy.

I believe that when you get little ones hooked on reading it encourages lifelong learning.

So, even if the little one can’t read yet it introduces them to those concepts and gets them excited about reading as they grow.

Build vocabulary

You may think Picture Books use simple words and plot lines but you’d be surprised. Many use complex words to push and expose children to higher levels of vocabulary.

Describe complex topics in a safe format

Things like art and history or even topics like divorce. Picture books are here to help children understand the abstract world around them in a safe way.

Start conversations

It starts as a tool for parents and children to discuss the topics and story as well as the complex topics tackled in the book. Like for example in Where the Wild Things Are Max learns all about consequences of his actions. This is a great conversation starter between parents and children to help them understand that their actions do have consequences.

Bridge the gap between generations

Now, this is my FAVORITE reason why Picture Books are so important. I love this one so much that I’ll be talking about it in one of the later blog posts for this series. All about the Pictures Books my granddaughter has introduced me to.

Me the Librarian!

It helps involve multi-generations in activities and encourages growth and conversations between young and old.


What Wonders Do You See?

The Seven Woders of Sassafras Springs

This summer I had the chance to read the Independent Readers book selection, The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs.  And I thoroughly enjoyed it! So, I want you to consider reading it in July also. Perhaps you will join Peggy on Friday, July 15th at DPL 11:00am to talk about the book.  It’s not to late to stop in and pick up a copy.  It makes a good read.  It also would be a wonderful read aloud family read, or while traveling, a book to read to everyone in the car.

The story introduces you to Eben McAllister from Sassafras Springs.  He loves adventure and reading.  His most recent book was about the Seven Wonders of the World.  Oh, if he could only leave the Springs for unknown travels and treasures like most of us want to leave to see more somewhere else.  After moping around, Eben’s father challenges him to find 7 treasures in Sassafras Springs and his dad will let him travel west by train to visit Colorado and Eben’s aunt.

Eben accepts the challenge realizing that he doesn’t believe he can think of one thing that can stand up to the “real” Seven Wonders.  Nothing he would even call interesting.  But he figures he’ll give it a try since there isn’t really anything else to do in Sassafras Springs but chores.

As you spend time with Eben you learn about the big surprises he is in for, like a singing saw or a floating table are just two of Eben’s discoveries. His neighbors, friends, and family help Eben learn about his town while being on the adventure of a lifetime.

Will he find 7?  Will he make the trip by train? Will he get to see Colorado?  You will have to read to find out.  This down-home narrative written by Betty G. Birney can be found in the j Fiction area at the Aurora and Dillsboro Libraries.

At a time when Indiana is celebrating the Bicentennial and Aurora, Dillsboro and Moores Hill are our home towns, what wonders could you tell about from your view.  Each community has many unique and special wonders to be discovered.  I am working on my list of 7.  Share your discoveries with us as you find your 7 Wonders.



It’s National Library Workers Day!!


Librarians across the United States today are celebrating National Library Workers’ Day (NLWD) observed on the Tuesday of National Library Week. NLWD recognizes the efforts and achievements that Librarians make to give communities access to information via books, computers and other materials in hand or through digital content.

Your Library is at the center of community education. For me, one of the wonderful things about the public Library is the doors are open to everyone. Just walk through the door and talk to the first staff member you meet. We are here for you!

NLWD is an observance and not a public holiday in the United States. First celebrated in 2004, National Library Workers’ Day recognizes the unique contributions that library workers make to help people find the information they need for learning, working, as well as for recreational purposes.

Originally proposed on January 25, 2003, the idea was announced to recognize the hard work dedication and expertise of library staff. First observed in 2004, the American Library Association continues today to recognize Librarians and their work. In 2016, you can Submit a Star to honor a great Librarian at your Library through the ALA’s Galaxy of Stars by providing a testimonial. Along with your recognition of their service, you will be asked to list their name, the Library type, and the city/state location to identify your Librarian. If you don’t want to submit a national recognition through a Star, consider if you are reading this to make a local thank you. I challenge you to choose the Librarian that assisted you recently when you came in or contacted our Library. Take a minute and write them a note at the bottom of this blog post or send me an email (maryalice@eapld.org) to share with them today.

We are here to help you obtain the knowledge and information you need to live, learn and work in the 21st century. I am so fortunate to work with such a talented and special group of Librarians at the Aurora Public Library District. I am proud to honor their sheer awesomeness.

I would like to share a heartfelt “thank you” to all of my co-workers at the Aurora Public Library District! 

Library 2015 staff




Step through our Doorway and Step out into Hoosier Wilderness

Our state parks give us an opportunity to explore nature, see the many different vistas of Indiana, and enjoy the outdoors.  Thanks to our colleague, Bill Buckley from Mooresville Public Library, we are debuting our first video from the Library.  The music and photos take you on a journey to many of our state parks.  Start planning your first or next trip today.

Did you know that kids need nature? They do! Research shows that children who spend time outside are more creative and are better problem solvers. They’re healthier, more physically fit, more confident, better test takers, and less stressed!  So plan a trip with a child in your life and get the same side benefits for you!

Stop by the Library and check out one of our park passes for a week.

See our FAQs for more information.