It's Time to Talk Summer Camps!

January is the perfect time to start researching summer camp options. Learn tips for finding the perfect camp and the scholarship and financial aid options available for affording camp.

It’s mid-January, the winter holidays are over and school is back in session...which means it is the perfect time to start researching summer learning options and making plans for your child’s summer experiences.

Surprised? It may feel like it’s too early to plan out attendance at camps and classes that are still five to six months away, but enrollment for many local camps begins this month. In addition, many camps that offer scholarships, financial aid, and/or sliding scale tuition based on a family’s finances have early spring application deadlines for awarding aid.

As a children's librarian, I often get families asking about these resources in May and early June; parents and caregivers are surprised and disappointed when I inform them that the camps they are interested in are fully enrolled and all available financial aid has already been awarded.

By getting an early start on planning for the summer, you can increase your chances at landing a spot at the camp of your choice!

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Play Café - a place for your little one and you

Colder winter weather can encourage us to stay inside more, but there's no reason to be stuck in the house with your little one all day! Come visit your local library, and see if there's a Play Café near you.

Play Café is what we call our storytime and playgroup for toddlers (ages 1-3) and their adult caregivers. It's like Toddler Time, but longer and with bonus coffee!

Whether you're a relative, nanny, or friendly neighbor lending a hand, you are welcome to bring the child in your care to play! Perhaps you will meet some new friends to invite to a playdate! There are several Play Café sessions around Oakland, with different songs and stories at each one. You can find one that works best for you, try a new one each week, or visit several in the same week if you like.

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Winter Craft : Snow Globes

It may not snow in Oakland but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying a little winter wonder. Mix a little glitter, glycerin, and water, pour into a jar and you have a Snow Globe.

It may not snow in Oakland but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying a little winter wonder. Mix a little glitter, glycerin, and water, pour into a jar and you have a Snow Globe.

We will have all the supplies necessary but if you have an extra or special jar and lid bring it in to use for your own Snow Globe.

Join us!

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Winter Bingo 2018

We invite children (recommended ages 0-12) to play Winter Bingo at OPL over the holiday break. Visit your local library to pick up a Winter Bingo card, complete any 5 activities in a row and win a FREE Book.

It's that time of year again!  We invite children (recommended ages 0-12) to play Winter Bingo at OPL over the holiday break. Visit your local library to pick up a Winter Bingo card, complete any 5 activities in a row and win a FREE Book. You may return completed Winter Bingo cards to any Oakland Public Library between December 26, 2018 and January 20, 2019 to receive a free book of your choice.

If you want to get started before your next visit to OPL you can print your own Winter Bingo card using the links below:

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Where Does OPL Stand on Screen Time for Kids?

Will the library restrict my child's screen time? (Or judge me if I do?)

child and parent using computerIn the last few weeks, articles have been swirling online about Silicon Valley parents banning all screen time for their children, including this New York Times article from October 26. (Blocked by the paywall? Click here.) Some parents who work in the tech industry have decided that the products they create are not safe for children, even in small doses--even if the child is simply observing, not actually using the device.

So, where does the Oakland Public Library stand on screens for kids?

First and foremost, we believe all parents want the best outcomes for their children, and we support families choosing for their own children whether--and how much--they use

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Educator Resources for Native American History Month

Have you noticed Michael Wertz's ABC Oakland honors Natives with 'O is for Ohlone' ? Oakland was home to the Ohlone Tribe. As we approach November and Native American Indians come to the forefront, we invite you to explore the culture, connect with the community and grow your understanding of Native Americans.

Have you noticed Michael Wertz's ABC Oakland honors Natives with 'O is for Ohlone' ? Oakland is Ohlone land.  As we approach November and Native American Indians come to the forefront, we invite you to explore the culture, connect with the community and grow your understanding of Native Americans.  

Explore three oral histories shared by the California Museum.

Connect with educators at the Oakland Museum Teacher's Lounge 4-7pm Friday, November 2, where with the topic will be 

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Día de los Muertos: A Top 5

While Halloween is celebrated Oct. 31, Día de los Muertos is celebrated right after, on Nov. 2. Many communities that celebrate Día de los Muertos also celebrate Halloween.

While Halloween is celebrated October 31, Día de los Muertos is celebrated right after, on November 2. Many communities that celebrate Día de los Muertos also celebrate Halloween.

FIVE Facts About Día de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead)

  1. It’s not the same as Halloween
  2. It originated in Mexico and Central America
  3. It’s a celebration of life, not death
  4. The ofrenda is a central component
  5. Flowers, butterflies and skulls are typically used as symbols

FIVE BOOKS TO READ for Día de los Muertos

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Two opportunities to see Latin Grammy winners 123 Andrés

Andrés and Christina, both native Spanish speakers, incorporate language seamlessly in this high-energy show. 123 Andrés brings beats and rhythms from all over Latin America that will entice kids to dance, discover, and get the whole family moving, en español y en inglés. Come learn or practice Spanish and see why Billboard magazine called 123 Andrés “a rockstar for little language learners!”

We are pleased to present two family friendly shows with 123 Andrés thanks to the Friends of the Oakland Public Library

On Tuesday, September 11, at 1:30 p.m., Latin Grammy winners 123 Andrés will perform at César E. Chávez Branch Library, 3301 East 12th Street, Suite 271. Admission is free

Andrés and Christina, both native Spanish speakers, incorporate language seamlessly in this high-energy show. 123 Andrés brings beats and rhythms from all over Latin America that will entice kids to dance, discover, and get the whole family moving, en español y en inglés. Come learn or practice Spanish and see why Billboard magazine called 123 Andrés “a rockstar for little language learners!”

There will be a second concert on Monday, September 17, at 10:30 a.m., at the

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Kids Summer Reading Success!

What did we do this summer? Where do we start?

Oakland students are back to school, but they sure came to “Explore, Connect & Grow” with the library this summer! 

Activities to Inspire Learners

From learning with real animals to playing musical instruments, from laughing with the Circus of Smiles to dancing with Turf Inc. or rocking with Alphabet Rockers, from making amazing bubbles to reading amazing stories, kids engaged in creative and fun learning every day at the library.  And that means they started the school year ready to learn.  

Outstanding Reading Success

This summer we had a special sign up prize for Kids Summer Reading: 4 tickets to an As game!  Readers turned out: 11,161 children signed up

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Father's Day Books that Aren't Hop on Pop

Dads are complex. Here's some Father's Day literary fare that celebrates dads who are feminist, POC, queer, undocumented, and usually excluded from the mainstream narrative of fatherhood.

For Kids

     

Franny's father is a feminist by Rhonda Leet

Daddies who are

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