Children's Bookshelf - March 2014
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Leaf Your Reading Worries Behind
by Lynn Zaffino

Spring into a world of reading and growth this March! As you prepare to bid farewell to winter, and eagerly anticipate budding flowers, warmer weather and longer days, it is a perfect time to appreciate the beauty of Connecticut’s trees. Trees experience a complete transformation as they usher in each season throughout the year. As spring begins, check out books with a nature or tree theme! Watch as the natural world, both inside stories and around you, pique your child’s interest. Celebrate this springtime by stepping out from the shade of any reading doubts you may have and learn about all of the beauty and resources that trees offer!

Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matheson is a delightfully interactive book that children will love. It follows the journey of a lone tree throughout the year — starting with a barren tree in the winter that eventually sprouts leaves, flowers and apples, before finally shedding its beautifully colored leaves. The magic of this book lies in the invitation on each page for children to tap, rub and shake the tree in order to bring about its many changes. In addition to being an enriching, exciting book to share, Tap the Magic Tree also offers opportunities to talk with children about nature, the seasons and the circle of life.

In A Friend for All Seasons by Julia Hubery, Robbie Raccoon plays with his friend Old Father Oak all spring and summer long. But, when fall comes and Robbie sees all the leaves falling from his cherished tree, he becomes alarmed and tries to protect his friend from the cold. Robbie feels better when his mother explains that Old Father Oak is merely signaling the approach of winter. With his mother’s guidance, Robbie saves five acorns and plants them beneath Old Father Oak before settling into his warm, cozy den for the winter. What wonderful surprises await Robbie when he awakens in the spring?

If you’re in the mood for some creative fun, try The Inside Tree by Linda Smith. One day while Mr. Potter is sitting in his cozy house drinking his tea and admiring the tree in his yard, he decides to make it an “inside tree.” All is well at first, but soon the tree grows too tall for the house, and Mr. Potter has to cut a hole in the roof. Disaster ensues when birds invade the house and it starts to rain.  Finally, Mr. Potter is forced to move out to the barn. But has he learned his lesson? Pick up a copy to find out!

If you didn’t think it was possible for a book about a tree to be a tearjerker, then you have to read Our Tree Named Steve by Alan Zweibel. Written in the form of a letter from Dad to his kids, who are spending the week at Grandma’s, Dad recalls how special Steve was to the family and all of the things that the tree provided — such as shade, a swing holder, a hiding place, third base and a clothesline holder. Then, Dad has to deliver the sad news: Steve has been knocked down in a storm. But the good news is that Dad finds a way to carry on Steve’s legacy.

And finally, no discussion of tree-themed books would be complete without a mention of The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. This classic story examines the special friendship between a boy and a tree. The tree’s love for the boy is so great that it is willing to sacrifice everything to make the boy happy. Dig in and learn about the true meaning of friendship and selflessness.

Events at the Easton Public Library

The Easton Public Library offers the year-round music and movement program, Baby/Toddler Be-Bop, for children ages 6-36 months. This program meets every Tuesday and Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. The library also offers a story time and craft program for children, ages 3 and up every Tuesday and Thursday at 2:15 p.m. Registration is not required for these programs.

For school-aged children, the library hosts three arts and crafts sessions every Wednesday and Thursday after school. Registration is required for all of these sessions. The library also hosts a monthly Duct Tape Club for children in grades 4 and up, a monthly book discussion group for grades 3-5, and many special programs throughout the year.

The Easton Public Library is located at 691 Morehouse Road. For more information, call 203-261-0134 or email

Lynn Zaffino is the Children’s and Young Adult Librarian at the Easton Public Library.



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