Themed Bookshelves

Celebrate Nobel Prize Day 2022!

Mahatma Gandhi was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize five times between 1937 and 1948. Nobel Prizes are rarely given posthumously, and upon his death in 1948 Gandhi was no longer considered eligible to receive the Prize.  Over the past 120 years many remarkable people have been nominated for a Nobel Prize but never recognized as Nobel Laureates. Others have been forgotten or excluded when their partners received recognition. Celebrate Nobel Prize Day 2022 by reading about some of these outstanding individuals who didn’t receive a Nobel Prize (but perhaps should have). Read More

Books About Scarecrows for 2022

Scarecrows have been used by farmers to protect their crops for thousands of years. Europeans who emigrated to the US during the 18th century brought their custom of making scarecrows that resembled humans. They dressed their scarecrows in worn-out pants, shirts and coats, placed old hats on heads stuffed with straw, and tied red handkerchiefs around their necks. They called these scarecrows bootzamon or bogeyman. While today’s farmers no longer rely on scarecrows to protect their crops, the scarecrow has become a symbol of the fall harvest season. Celebrate the fall season in 2022 with some of these fun stories featuring scarecrows: Read More

Celebrate Picture Book Month 2022

Since 1938, the Caldecott Medal has been awarded every year by the American Library Association to the “artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.” Watercress, illustrated by Jason Chin and written by Andrea Wang, was the Caldecott winner in 2022. The Caldecott Medal is named for English illustrator Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886). Caldecott is credited with originating the modern picture book by using his colorful illustrations to help tell the story rather than simply reflect the written words. Created by Rene Paul Chambellan in 1937, the bronze medal’s design is based on one of Randolph Caldecott's illustrations for The Diverting History of John Gilpin. It features the image of a man riding a runaway horse surrounded by geese, dogs and children. To celebrate Picture Book Month in 2022, enjoy some of these gorgeous nonfiction picture books chosen by John Schu and Colby Sharp for their 2023 Mock Caldecott List, illustrated by Kate Berube, Sophie Blackall, Jason Chin, Christopher Denise, Chioma Ebinama, Eric Fan, Terry Fan, Deborah Freedman, Michaela Goade, Madelyn Goodnight, Edward Hemingway, Molly Idle, Yas Imamura, Rafael López, Deborah Marcero, Zahra Marwan, Meghan McCarthy, Daniel Minter, Frank Morrison, Christopher Silas Neal, Doug Salati, Erin E. Stead, Young Vo, and Gracey Zhang. And here we collected Jazzy’s 2022 Picture Book Month Bookshelf for you. Read More

Native American Heritage Month 2022

The Diné, or Navajo People, welcome a baby into their community by celebrating the baby’s first laugh. As part of the celebration, the baby often receives a special gift of turquoise, and the meal might include rock salt, symbolizing a connection with the earth. Who gets to host this celebration? The person who first made the baby laugh!  To celebrate 2022 Native American Heritage Month, you can read more about the Diné first laugh celebration and the traditions and experiences of other Indigenous Americans in the books below: Read More

2022 National Cat Day

Cats sleep a lot. In fact, some cats sleep as much as 20 hours per day! But that doesn’t mean that cats spend all that time sound asleep. Most of the time, cats are just dozing and ready to jump up at a moment’s notice. Which is why we say that a person enjoying a quick, light sleep is taking a “cat nap.” :) To Celebrate National Cat Day, learn more about cats and their wilder relatives by exploring these great cat books, below. Read More

Trick? Or Treat?

Each year, lots of families carve jack-o’-lanterns to celebrate Halloween. But did you know that the first jack-o’-lanterns were carved from turnips, not pumpkins? In Ireland and Scotland people hollowed out turnips and gave them creepy faces to celebrate the feast of All Hallows’ Eve. Many years later, when immigrants from the UK arrived in North America, they discovered that the native pumpkin made a much better jack-o’-lantern, because it was larger and softer than a turnip.  Trick-or-treating would look quite different today, without those familiar orange faces glowing in the dark! Here are some wonderful, pumpkin-themed books that will help get you ready to trick or treat: Read More

Celebrate World Inclusion Day!

The world’s population includes 2 billion children aged 0-14. These children live in 195 different countries, speak more than 7,000 languages, and represent hundreds of different ethnicities. In celebration of World Inclusion Day, enjoy these stories about children whose race, gender, abilities or experiences might differ from yours! Read More

National Hispanic & Latín Heritage Month

In honor of National Hispanic & Latín Heritage Month, learn more about Frida Kahlo, the brilliant Mexican artist who painted at Casa Azul in Frida Kahlo: Revolutionary Painter!, and explore other wonderful books that celebrate Hispanic and Latín heritage. Read More

September 19 is Talk Like a Pirate Day

Pirates may not have buried much treasure on deserted islands, cried “argh” when displeased, or forced their captives to walk the plank. (Argh!) But some pirate lore seems to be based on fact. Pirates actually had parrots for pets, wore eye patches, and flew the Jolly Roger. (Blimey!) To celebrate National Talk Like a Pirate Day, read a pirate book or three. Discover interesting facts and popular pirate myths, and find out more about the seadogs, swashbucklers and scallywags who roamed the briny deep. Read More

Celebrate National Teddy Bear Day on September 9

In 1902, the 26th President of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt, was on a hunting trip in Mississippi, when he refused to shoot a bear. The owner of a candy store in Brooklyn, New York, named Morris Michtom, read about the incident, and he and his wife, Rose, created a stuffed bear in his honor – Teddy’s Bear. Read More