Baby Faces

A round-up of books for babies, featuring…babies!

Babies LOVE gazing at faces. Parents and caregivers have always known this; brain research now backs it up as fact. Even the youngest of kiddos are hardwired to recognize faces, and will tend to look at pictures of faces longer than images of other objects.

Want to stimulate your baby's brains? Head on over to the library and find these board books featuring photographs of baby faces:

Global Babies book cover   

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In Abundance: authors explore how we got fat.

Three Bay Area authors give thier take on your expanding waistline.

This year's Summer Reading theme: “Reading is So Delicious” got me thinking and reading about what an abundance of delicious may do to our bodies.
 
Two journalists and a doctor, all residents of the Bay Area, tackle just this subject.
 

 How the Food Giants Hooked Us  by Michael MossSalt, Sugar, Fat gives an enlightening and sometimes frightening account of the processed food industry in the United States and beyond. Moss discusses how the biggest names in Big Food once

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Music Makes the World Go Round

First 5 California offers a Kids Station on the free online music service Pandora!

First 5 California has launched a Kids Station on the online music service "Pandora." This fun new - and free - station targets parents and features music to encourage learning and physical activity.  It includes not only children's music but also examples of other ways to engage and stimulate children's brains -- clapping, dancing, singing, humming!  There are even more suggestions on the First 5 California web site's "

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Hot Off the Presses!

Brand new books for kids, recommended by OPL staff.

Do you know where the newest and shiniest books are kept in your local library? If not, ask a staff member to show you the way! Most branches have a “new book” shelf where you can find these and other fresh, fantastic books for kids:

Picture Books

Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons book cover

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What is Community Relations?

Meet Sharon McKellar, Oakland's Community Relations Librarian, and welcome to our Community Relations Blog!

I have a confession to make.  I've put off writing this first post for weeks because I haven't been able to come up with a good title for this blog.  What is Community Relations?  Well, I suppose it is an official sounding way to describe broadly what I do - which is to work, in any way imaginable, on connecting the library and the community we serve.  What it isn't, though, is a fun and sassy name for a blog that the community might actually want to read.  

This is going to be a great space where I can share all the different ways that we are working together.  I have videos and photos to show you, and an abundance of stories to tell.  

I'm going to give us some time to get to know this blog and then we're going to come up with a name for it, you and I.  If something brilliant comes to you, keep it in mind and when I'm ready, I'll let you know.  I'm thinking about a blog-naming contest in the next couple of weeks and I don't want you to give away your best ideas too soon.

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Wild: from lost to found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Go "Wild" with Cheryl Strayed in her memoir of her 1,000 mile hike of the Pacific Coast Trail!!! You will feel like you walked beside her!

                                                              Image preview

When is nonfiction better than fiction?

When the writer makes you feel like you lived it alongside her...When you are happily exhausted and you did none of the work....When you "Can't-Put-It-Down."

The name "Cheryl Strayed," is a chosen name which captures the reality and the spirit of the story. At 23, Cheryl was on the verge of the abyss emotionally and literally when she hikes, ALONE, 1,000 miles on the Pacific Coast Trail from Mojave to Oregon. She

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Meet Miriam Medow

Meet Miram Medow, children's librarian at the Lakeview Branch Library!

Today, let's head over to Lake Merritt and meet Miriam Medow, the children's librarian at the Lakeview Branch LibraryPicture of Miriam

Miriam, what brought you to the Lakeview Library?

I was drawn to the Lakeview branch because of its awesome location in the vibrant and beautiful Grand Lake neighborhood. As you could guess from the branch name, we can see Lake Merritt from our front door!

Give us an example of what a day at work looks like for you.

On the very best days, my work involves singing and dancing and sharing books with kiddos. Each day also includes a lot of asking, "how can I help you?" Last week, I found myself ordering Lego pieces off eBay -- it's fair to say that no days here are identical. But it's typically a satisfying balance of face-to-face,

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10 Great Reasons to Read Fiction in May

Here's a preview of 10 great novels coming this month.

And the Mountains Echoed book coverAmericanah book coverA Constellation of Vital Phenomena book cover

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Children’s Magazines

Oakland Public Library has an awesome selection of magazines for kids. Here are some highlights.

Have you discovered the children’s magazine section of your local library?

Zoobooks magazine cover    Babybug magazine coverBoys' Life magazine cover    

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Every Child Ready to Read - Playing

Playing is one of the five activities that help prepare children to read.

Playing is fun! It is also a necessary part of your child's early experience. In fact, while they play they are busy learning that spoken and written words can stand for real objects and experiences. It also helps them express themselves and put thoughts and emotions into words. They can use puppets, stuffed animals, really anything they can find around the house to use for props and develop their imagination. 

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