Summer Reading: New Storytime Books

7 06 2012

We recently got some new Storytime books. Do you have any new favorite books? Let us know what books you’d like to see us read in the comment section. Here’s just a few of our new books and why we like them:

Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site

by Sherri Duskey Rinker and Tom Lichtenheld

This sweet, bed time, rhyming book features all our favorite vehicles who work so hard all day at the construction site. After doing all the heavy lifting, Bulldozer, Cement Mixer, and all the other trucks and tractors are ready for their well deserved rest.

Watch Me Throw the Ball!

by Mo Willems

Elephant and Piggie are back for more fun. Gerald’s ball rolls up to Piggie, just asking to be thrown. But when Piggie’s throw is far from perfect, how will the dynamic duo recover? Silly fun abounds in this book by the author of the Pigeon series, Knuffle Bunny, and other favorites.

Little Owl Lost

By Chris Haughton

Our favorite thing about this book is the beautiful illustrations – the jewel tone, cut-paper collage imagery tell a classic tale with new vibrancy. Owl falls from the nest and gets separated from Mom. An overly helpful squirrel eagerly helps with Little Owl’s search.





National Police Week

1 05 2012

The third week of May celebrates National Police Week. During this week, you are encouraged to be thankful for Police Officers who have worked hard to keep America safe. National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. This week was established in 1962 and has taken place at the same time every year since it’s creation. It’s slogan is “In Memory of Many, in Honor of all”.

As well as recognizing police officers, May also holds days dedicated to other hard working professionals such as nurses, teachers, receptionists, and those who serve in the armed forces.

National Nurse Week takes place starting May 6th, with school nurses getting their own recognition on May9th.  The week draws awareness to the importance of the care , comfort, and well being that nurses bring to us,  especially our children and the aging, and those in poor health.

National Teachers Day takes place on May 1st and is dedicated to those hard working, patient and understanding people who look after us and out children throughout most of the week. National teachers day values professionals working as teachers and teaching assistants through Kindergarten to college.

National Armed Forces Day is on the 19th May and was created in August 31, 1949 by Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson. This is a day specifically designed to remind everyone of the hard work and dedication that the armed forces do every single day. It is to congratulate them on all of their hard work during training and to thank them for their bravery during risky and sometimes perilous missions for freedom and country.





Hans Christian Andersen

23 04 2012

April brings us so many exciting things, like Easter, April Fools Day, and National Garden Month. But April is also home to the birthday of the great author, poet and children’s story writer Hans Christian Andersen!

Andersen was most famously known for creating popular stories such as Thumbelina, The Ugly ducking, The Emperors New Clothes and The Princess and the Pea.

Andersen lived from April 2, 1805 – August 4, 1875 in Denmark. Within this time, he wrote an incredible 168 tales most of which have been translated into many different languages.

A movie was released in 1952 starring famous actor Danny Kaye. This movie incorporated many of his fairy tales. The opening scene of the movie describes it best: “Once upon a time there lived in Denmark a great storyteller named Hans Christian Andersen. This is not the story of his life, but a fairy tale about the great spinner of fairy tales.”

What is your favorite Andersen tale?





Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

24 02 2012

With the new movie The Lorax being released on March 2nd 2012, the date that would have been Dr Seuss’ 108th birthday, we thought we’d take a closer look at the issues that the movie is trying to tell us about.

The story, originally published in 1971, pays great attention to how the environment is being damaged in order to make other things. Trees, truffula trees in this case, are being chopped down  to make clothing and carpet. In real life, trees do get cut down every day, even if we don’t see it happening.

The Lorax shows us how every action causes a reaction. In this case, because the trees are being cut down, the other characters in the book are not able to eat because it is the trees that grow their food. With no trees, there will be no food.

It is also mentioned that because of the factory being built to create more items from the trees, the birds are being effected – they cannot sing and have to fly much further away to get out of the smog.

In the final section of the book, the lorax shows how the water around the factory is also being harmed by the chemicals that are thrown out of the factory. The images also show the amount of damage that factories can cause to the environment. In this particular case, fish are jumping and climbing out of the oil filled pond as quickly as they can.

So in the end, The Lorax is trying to get you to think about how your actions are affecting the environment, and what you could do to help the environment.

Do you recycle?

Recycling is a great way to start helping the environment! Start by cleaning up your room and recycling everything that you don’t need or use anymore.

Here is a short list of just some of the things that can be recycled:

  • Aluminum cans
  • Cardboard
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Magazines
  • Metal
  • Newspapers
  • Paper
  • Plastic bags
  • Plastic bottles
  • Steel cans

These are items that would will find everyday in your own house. Just find yourself a large box/bin to place all these items when you are finished with them. You could even decorate the large box and label it ‘Recycling‘ so that even visitors can see that you are trying to help the environment.

But other than recycling, how else can you help the environment?

  • Walk or cycle to school
  • Take shorter showers
  • Make sure all lights are switched off when they are not needed
  • Reuse water bottles etc, instead of throwing them away once you’re done.




2011 Texas Book Festival

20 10 2011

Now that’s it’s getting colder, we can think of nothing finer than snuggling up with a blanket and reading our favorite books. And with that in mind…

The 2011 Texas Book Festival is here! Bringing authors and readers together for literacy, ideas, and imagination, this is a free public even that happens every year at the State Capitol here in Austin. This is the 15th annual Texas Book Festival and it will be taking place Saturday and Sunday, October 22-23.

To kick-off this exciting festival, here at ACM we’ll be hosting an event Friday October 21st from 3:30-5:30 where you can meet Doreen Cronin author of  M.O.M. and Eileen Christelow author of Five Little Monkeys Reading in Bed.

Happy reading!





Summer Reading Club

8 08 2011

Finding ways to spend your vacation is half the fun of summer. But after many, many days without school sometimes you may find yourself bored. Well, writer Jenny Rosenstrach was taught by her mother that “Only boring people get bored”.

Have you ever thought about the challenge of a summer reading list? Jenny has playfully created a point system to encourage her children to entertain themselves with fabulous books whether it be a picture book, a chapter book or even a comic book. After reading a few books and obtaining a specific number of points, her child will be able to collect prizes. Here is Jenny’s detailed account of her Summer Book Club.

Scholastic gives kids the task of logging the minutes that they read not just how many books that are completed. Scholastic invites kids to Read for the World Record and attempt to have the name of their school placed in the 2012 Scholastic Book of World Records.

If you’d like a list from Scholastic of books for ages 3-5 click here!

Ages 6-7? Click here!

Ages 8-10? Click here!

Ages 10-12? Click here!

Take a look at how we use children’s stories here at the Museum.

Read the rest of this entry »





History of Fingerprinting

28 07 2011
At ACM’s Get a Clue camp, campers sharpen their  logic and detective skills by investigating mysteries, solving riddles and cracking codes.  One of the favorite activities at camp is to take each other’s fingerprint.
fingerprint
Imprinting the friction ridges of a person’s fingertip onto a surface is an easy way to uniquely identify someone.  No two people have been found to have the same fingerprint and because of this, fingerprinting is used for many purposes, including crime solving.
The first modern, official use of fingerprinting as a way of identifying people was July 28, 1858 when a British magistrate, William James Herschel in India requested a local businessman put his hand print on the back of a contract.  Herschel developed to the system because he thought locals felt more bound to a contract through this personal contact than if it was just signed.  After 40 years of observing the fingerprints over time, Herschel also determined that fingerprints never change with age.
Although fingerprinting had been used as early as ancient Babylonia to seal clay tablets, this was the first time a government made fingerprinting a protocol to use to distinguish people.  Almost 40 years later a policeman in Argentina began to keep fingerprints on file of criminals for investigating crimes.  Now fingerprinting is a fundamental technology used in criminal investigations.
You can take your fingerprint at home.  All you need is some tape, a pencil, some white paper and a magnifying glass. Read the rest of this entry »







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