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Making Magic
Make your own elf homes from toilet paper tubes, small cardboard boxes, branches, pebbles and a little bit of magic. Have paint and your glue gun ready!

Place your completed elf hut outside - maybe an elf might just move in!
Share a photo of your hut in the comments beow.
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jul 06, 2020 at 1:16 PM
  
Read It!

**Video may contain spoilers**
Join APL staff each week for a discussion of some of their current reads! Each week they will discuss a book from a different genre. Join the discussion live on at Facebook.com/AuroraLibrary each Friday at 1 p.m. (MST) and leave your thoughts in the comments below!



The next discussion will be at 1 p.m. on July 10, 2020 on our Facebook page and will feature "Desperadoes" by Ron Hansen (available instantly on hoopladigital.com).

Other upcoming titles, all available instantly from hoopla digital, include:
- July 17, "Commute" by Erin Williams
- July 24, "The Goblin Emperor" by Katherine Addison
- July 31, "FantasticLand" by Mike Bockoven
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jul 05, 2020 at 9:32 AM
  
On July 2, 2020, at 2:43 P.M., Aurora Police Officers and Aurora Fire Rescue responded to a crash at South Sable Boulevard and East Centrepoint Drive.

Investigation found that a Buick sedan had crashed into a Chevrolet Suburban then ran off the road and crashed into a tree. The adult male driver of the Buick died as a result of injuries sustained from crashing into the tree. The occupants of the Suburban were uninjured. At this time, it appears the Buick had just been involved in another non-injury crash, a few miles away, and was fleeing the scene of that crash. Our initial investigation revealed that the Buick was traveling at a very high rate of speed when it rear-ended the Suburban.  Additionally, the driver of the Buick was not wearing their seatbelt.

The identity of the deceased male will be released by the Arapahoe County Coroner's Office after positive identification and next-of-kin notification.

Officer Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Aurora Police Department
720-432-5095
Posted by mwellslo@auroragov.org  On Jul 02, 2020 at 7:47 PM
  
Read It!

Family Book Club
with Tess

It's a new month and time for our next Family Book Club read!

 The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Andrews Edwards

"The Whangdoodle was once the wisest, the kindest and the most extraordinary creature in the world" but it, along with many other splendid and strange creatures, have disappeared, creating for themselves a secret land to live in peace away from people. Most humans have forgotten them but, with the help of Professor Savant, three children discover the way to Whangdoodleland. 

Join the Family Book Club (all online!) and read this exciting fantasy/adventure written by the great Julie Andrews! To put a copy of the book on hold to be picked up during Curbside Pickup hours, please call 303.627.3050. 

We will have discussion questions every Monday on our blog and, in the final week, a fun activity!
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jul 01, 2020 at 11:11 AM
  
Create & DIY for adults

Ever wanted your own dragon? Make a mystical, magical dragon egg with push-pins and a little creativity!

Thanks to Lucinda with Swish and Stitch for letting us share this craft with you! Visit her website swishandstitch.com for more crafts!


Music: BenSound 
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jul 01, 2020 at 10:12 AM
  
Making Magic: Crafts for Kids

Celebrate the Fourth of July with a bang by making this wooden star wreath!

Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jun 29, 2020 at 3:43 PM
  
Read It!

Family Book Club 
with Tess

"The Turnaway Girls" by Hayley Chewins
Chapters 32 - 41

The Turnaway Girls

- Were you surprised by what Mother Nine said to Delphernia? Were you surprised by Delphernia's reaction to her?
- How did you feel when Delphernia founds out her mother is still alive and that the Childer-Queen and Bly are her family?
- How do they save Linna and change Blightsend?
- Did you like this novel? What were your favorite things?
Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Activity: Follow these instructions to make clay birds. When you come to the painting part, paint them gold 🙂
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jun 29, 2020 at 1:42 PM 1 Comment
  
Read It!

**Video may contain spoilers**
Join APL staff each week for a discussion of some of their current reads! Each week they will discuss a book from a different genre. Join the discussion live on at Facebook.com/AuroraLibrary each Friday at 1 p.m. (MST) and leave your thoughts in the comments below! 



The next discussion will be at 1 p.m. on July 3, 2020 on our Facebook page and will feature "Reclaiming Home" by Lesego Malepe (available instantly on hoopladigital.com).

Other upcoming titles, all available instantly from hoopla digital, include:
 - July 10, "Desperadoes" by Ron Hansen
- July 17, "Commute" by Erin Williams
- July 24, "The Goblin Emperor" by Katherine Addison
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jun 26, 2020 at 2:35 PM
  
Benefits of Storytime

Storytime-at-Home: The Benefits of Storytime
by Tess J. 

Most public libraries host multiple storytimes per week for different age groups. Families attend, not only because it is fun and engages the children for 30-60 minutes, but because parents/guardians know that their children will learn. With our model of Read, Write, Sing, Talk and Play, children will be exposed to numerous skills that go beyond the basics of numbers and colors.

The list is endless but here are a few skills children learn at storytime:
- Letter/Word Recognition (both visual and auditory)
- New Vocabulary
- Fine and Gross Motor Development
- Imagination and Storytelling 
- Listening skills

These are just a few in the long list of early literacy skills children will take away from storytime, plus the added bonuses of learning how to sit still, use quiet voices, follow directions and more! I love storytime for all that it provides for children's development in a fun and interactive way. 

While storytime at the library is a great place to learn and practice these skills, it's important to practice them at home too! That is why I created these Storytime-at-Home activity sheets. Parents and caretakers are children's first teachers and children learn more from parents and caregivers than anyone else, especially 0-5 year olds. You have the opportunity to foster their early literacy development! These activity sheets will help you read, sing, play, talk and write with your child(ren)!

Storytime-At-Home: General
Storytime-At-Home: Bedtime
Storytime-At-Home: Dinosaurs
Storytime-At-Home: Fairy Tales
Storytime-At-Home: Lions, Tigers & Bears

Print them out or request one of our themed Curbside Surprise bundles via our library catalog to get a copy!
We've compiled suggested titles for storytime-at-home too. Visit our Pinterest page for recommended reads, songs, activities and crafts to try at home!

Looking for more early literacy tips? Check out our Read, Write, Talk, Sing and Play handouts here! 

During the Covid-19 pandemic, we have moved our storytimes online! Join us on Facebook at the below times for storytime!
-
All Ages - Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday, 10 a.m.
- American Sign Language (signed in ASL & read in English) - Wednesdays, 10 a.m.
- Pajama Storytime - Thursdays, 6:30 p.m.
Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jun 26, 2020 at 2:04 PM
  

Fantastical Reimaginings

Fantastical Reimaginings: “The Snow Queen”
Elizabeth B.

Whether you’ve been around small children belting out “Let it Go” or not, if I mention the words “fairy tale” and “snow queen,” you’ll probably picture “Frozen”: a magical girl runs from her kingdom into a wintery forest, singing about her newfound freedom…

The Snow Queen
Image from Wikipedia
 
Just kidding! That’s not “The Snow Queen.” At least, it’s not the original version, though I’m sure Hans Christian Andersen would love Disney’s “Frozen” just as much as the next person. The original story is one of my favorites. Like all the best fairy tales, “The Snow Queen” is way darker than you’d expect, full of sacrifice, heartache, attempted robbery and snow bees. Find out more about this story’s history and retellings below!

History
Hans Christian Andersen, Disney’s favorite Danish writer, is the hidden hand behind several fairy tale classics. If you’ve called yourself an “ugly duckling,” sung along with Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”, or watched “Frozen”, you’ve enjoyed one of Andersen’s 3,381 written works. Hans Christian Andersen’s life was no fairy tale, though. Psychologists speculate that Hans Christian Andersen suffered from bipolar disorder and he wrote many unrequited love letters to men and women. The fairy tales he wrote frequently deal with loneliness and unrequited affection – they may or may not end happily. Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen” was first published in 1844 and remains one of his most popular stories.  

The Original
In Andersen’s original story, childhood friends Gerda and Kai are inseparable. They play together and listen to Gerda’s grandmother tell tales of the cold-hearted Snow Queen, ruler of the snow bees. When young Kai gets a shard of evil mirror in his heart and eye, Kai begins to avoid Gerda. He then meets the Snow Queen, who freezes his heart and takes him away to an icy palace. Gerda goes to save him. 
Of all of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales, this is one of the wildest. There’s a bunch of demons who just – oops -  accidentally drop the world’s most evil magic mirror and break it. The Snow Queen can erase your memories, but so can ordinary gardeners. There’s talking ravens and surprise doppelgangers, a talking reindeer and bandits and a jigsaw puzzle made of shards of ice.
And at the heart of all of it, a question: when should you fight for a broken relationship or friendship, and when should you accept it’s over? Unlike many Andersen fairy tales, though, this story ends happily: Gerda saves Kai and cold winter gives way for spring.

“The Snow Queen” Retellings
So, how much has this classic fairy tale changed over the years? Are the retellings similar or impossibly different? Find out more about similar tales below!

***
 Disney's Frozen
Disney’s “Frozen”
Picture book available on Hoopla
“There’s beauty and there’s danger here…Beware the frozen heart.”
Sisters Elsa and Anna are separated when Elsa’s icy powers almost hurt her sister. As adults, Elsa hides her emotions and avoids Anna, who feels lonely and hurt by this change. When Elsa’s powers spiral out of control, she flees the kingdom and runs away to create an icy palace. Anna goes to save her, along with the help of Kristoff and his “talking” reindeer Sven.  
“Frozen” isn’t exactly like “The Snow Queen” - no children are kidnapped and the snow queen isn’t evil. Just like the original story, though, “Frozen” focuses on frozen hearts, talking reindeer and emotionally distant best friends. There’s even a fun homage to the original author and his frequent crushes: at her first ball, Anna meets and instantly plans to marry a red-headed prince named Hans.

***
 Breadcrumbs
“Breadcrumbs” by Anne Ursu 
Available on Hoopla
“People who come here looking for things…they don’t usually find what they want.”
Hazel and Jack have been best friends for years, but now that they’re entering middle school, he’s started ignoring Hazel, and wants to hang out with the other boys at school. Hazel knows that it’s not just them growing apart: it has to have something to do with that strange pain in Jack’s heart and eye at recess. And she’s right: Jack’s heart has been frozen. When he’s taken into a mysterious forest by a witch, Hazel follows to get her best friend back. 
“Breadcrumbs” starts much like Hans Christian Andersen’s original tale: a boy changes because of an evil magic mirror; he’s kidnapped; a girl follows him to save him. This story focuses on the youth of its protagonists: maybe it’s a witch, or maybe these changes are just part of growing up. Once Hazel enters the forest, the story begins to change: this forest is full of fairy tales, and Hazel’s journey won’t be nearly as safe or easy as she originally thinks.

***
 "The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe"
“The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” by C. S. Lewis
Available through Hoopla
“‘You have a traitor there, Aslan,’ said the Witch.” 
When Lucy and her siblings find a magical wardrobe to a land trapped in eternal winter, three of them meet talking badgers and magical beings. One brother, Edmund, instead meets the frozen land’s ruler: an icy sorceress in a magical sled who offers Edmund candy, kisses him, and tells him to bring his siblings to her. When Edmund fails to follow through on his bargain, the White Witch of Narnia comes for him instead.
“The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” has many elements that aren’t in the original “Snow Queen”: Hans Christian Andersen doesn’t write about lampposts, epic battles or talking lions. But the beginning of the story is still the same: when a boy is tricked and taken to a winter palace by an icy woman, those who love him must save him from a terrible fate.

***
"The Raven and the Reindeer" 
“The Raven and the Reindeer” by Ursula Vernon
Not available through library (yet!)
“Once upon a time, there was a boy born with frost in his eyes and frost in his heart.”
Gerta is in love with her best friend, Kay. Kay doesn’t seem to feel the same way, but that’s okay: even if he doesn’t talk with her in front of his friends or seek her out in his free time, he did kiss her once, and she knows the real him. Right? So when Kay is taken away by a beautiful and deadly snow queen, Gerta follows, determined to save him.
“The Raven and the Reindeer” follows the original tale closely: a frozen heart, a distant best friend, a talking raven, a far-reaching quest across the land. Ursula Vernon’s version of the fairy tale focuses on Gerta and Kay’s relationship: is their relationship an even one, or is Gerta’s affection unrequited? When Gerta meets a robber girl – a violent ally in Hans’ original tale, and a helpful one here – Gerta starts to question why she’s chasing after Kay and if he even cares about her the same way.
***

What’s your favorite “Snow Queen” retelling? Does Sven count as a talking reindeer? Should Gerta chase Kay, despite everything, or have I given Hans Christian Andersen’s hero a bad rap? I hope you enjoy these fairy tale retellings. Happy reading!

Posted by svanholb@auroragov.org  On Jun 26, 2020 at 12:56 PM
  
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