All seasons and spaces for play

Your library offers a variety of play for your child, rain or no rain.

girls playing in libraryAs fall weather sets in and we get news of that rare thing called rain, it gets harder to plan for outdoor play with your child. How about stopping at your library?

Check out our kids events listings for storytimes for your baby, toddler, or preschooler...or just come in play with them in our picture book areas, where you'll find comfy floor space and toys near the picture books.  Ask the librarian for a new book to read with your child--though it's good for them to hear their favorites over and over, it's also good for them to hear you having fun with a story.  

We also offer all kinds of out-of-school activities for your school-age child, from art to

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Found in the Library, Take Two

Check out these amazing items, all found in library books and around the library.

It's been awhile since my first "Found" post, and it seems like the right time to show off some more library treasures.  All of these items were found around the Oakland Public Library by library staff - many of them in books, but some just in the building.  

Which one is your favorite?  I like to picture the people who left these items behind, and to make up stories in my head about what each of these might mean.  Any ideas?  

Hey - who knows!  Maybe you'll even find something you've been missing!

           

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Make: Holiday

Start now and you'll have the perfect holiday craft or treat for everyone on your list. Here's a roundup of new and notable craft, baking and maker-type books.

Our city is brimming with creativity. Don't let yours go to waste this holiday season. Start early and give a handmade gift this year.  Here's a roundup of new and notable craft, baking and maker-type books that will help you whip up the best kind of gift, one you made yourself or with friends and family.
Sprinklebakes bookMartha Stewart's favorite crafts for kids sweets and treats from around the world book

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Hot off the Presses

A list of our Children’s Librarians’ favorite new books for kids.

Look in the “new” area of your local library to find these and other fresh, excellent books for kids. Let us know in the comments if we missed any of your faves!

Picture Books

Bully book cover

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KALW's Hear Here is Sharing Library Users' Stories

Listen to some short and lovely life stories from some of our library users.

For a couple of years, KALW 91.7FM’s Hear Here radio producers have been asking OPL patrons to share their personal stories on tape. From Golden Gate to Temescal, César Chávez and 81st Avenue, our patrons have shared stories about the trials they’ve faced and the happiness that they’ve found.  Hear Here is designed to illuminate life in San Francisco and Oakland, drawing out the common threads that tie us together. 

In the last two weeks, two new stories have popped up on the KALW site that have come from our own library patrons.  The first features Visalia Stanley at the 81st Avenue Branch Library.  Click through to listen to her tale of how she found a way to feed herself during tough times.  For the

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Sociopaths, Psychopaths and Antisocials, Oh My!!!!

Four titles on Evil: The Sociopath Next Door, The Psychopath Test, Confessions of a Sociopath, and Dark Nature: A Natural History of Evil

Lately books on these topics have been all the rage...rage from the victims!
 
We semi-normals, i.e. empaths (having empathy) are trying to figure out why Sociopaths, Psychopaths and Antisocials are the way they are and how we can protect ourselves from them. It's not just the mean kids we endured in grade school, middle school and high school!  Those people grew up and they not only are they still out there, they are all around us, in fact they are running the world through politics and business, or they are a sibling, a spouse, a coworker, a boss, a neighbor, even a best friend! Yikes.
 
So which book to start with? So many to choose from!
 
How about:
The Sociopath Next Door: The Ruthless Versus the Rest of Us by Martha Stout. Martha Stout is a

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Happy 135th Birthday, OPL!

Today is the 135th birthday of the Oakland Public Library!

Today is the 135th birthday of the Oakland Public Library!

You can learn a little about the history of the Oakland Public Library on our website, and you can learn A LOT in the Oakland History Room. So, I learned that although the library existed even earlier, it was founded as a municipal entity on November 7, 1878 and was the second public library system in California. I also learned that the first librarian, Ina Coolbrith was not only the first California Poet Laureate, she was also a MAJOR cat lover.

With the help of the wonderful librarians who know the Oakland History Room inside and out I was able to find some of the oldest library-related things we still have hanging around, and I

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Readers I Know #3: Heaven

Part of an ongoing series of cartoon blog posts on OPL readers.

Part of an ongoing series of cartoon blog posts on OPL readers.

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The Beauty of Board Books

Board Books are best when they use images and words that appeal to babies and create a playful experiences for caregiver and child.

Book coverAs a children's services librarian, I am always thrilled to see anything about children's books or children's literacy get major news coverage.  So I woke up fast when I caught the New York Times article just over a week ago on the front page, below the fold (for those of who still read the paper paper) about board books.  Board books!  The overlooked and unappreciated format for, as the NYTimes put it, "the teething set."    Yet, my heart sank as I read on. 

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Library User Spotlight: Meet Nakia!

Today, I'm very excited to introduce you to Nakia M. White. Nakie is not only an active library user, but she is an active member of the community in a variety of other inspiring ways.

It is finally time for the second in a series of blog posts that let you meet some of our most amazing library patrons. Today, I'm very excited to introduce you to Nakia M. White. Nakie is not only an active library user, but she is an active member of the community in a variety of other inspiring ways. Oakland is lucky to have her, and we are so happy she shared a little bit of herself with us here today!

Nakia works for a public agency in Oakland, but outside of that is involved as both a reader and writer in her community. Nakia describes herself in her own words:

"Reading is my first love, so much so that I have a blog dedicated to my favorite authors: Zora Neale Hurston,

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