Archive for May, 2013

Early Lit Bits: Music Minute

Saturday, May 18th, 2013

Jump-start Action SongsMusic is a great way to get the wiggles out! It’s great seeing kids get excited about dancing to their favorite songs. Music and movement help young brains build connections, but music can also help kids learn to stop moving!

STOP can be a hard word to teach excited little ones, and all too often it’s a word they really don’t want to hear. Self-regulating is the ability to make your body listen to your brain, and to the requests of those around you. Using Freeze songs is a great way to practice stopping and starting on cue. It can also become a fun way to get young children to pay attention to important words, like “Stop,” “Wait” or “Freeze,” when they become a little too revved up during movement activities, or just day-to-day events.

Some great songs to use include:

“I Can Dance” by Ronno
“Can’t Wait to Celebrate” by Jim Gill
“Bop & Stop” by Merry Music Maker
“Freeze” or “Stop & Go” by Greg & Steve

Any song can be used to play freeze games, though. Fast moving classical songs, or even rock & roll, can be paused for great freeze-song fun!



This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.


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KDL Top Ten – 5/16/2013

Friday, May 17th, 2013

View ten of the most popular Children’s Picture books this month at KDL — click on the link to your Top Ten List!

Top Ten Children's Picture Books 5-17-2013



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A Farewell to The Office

Friday, May 17th, 2013

The OfficeOn May 16 America will say goodbye to good friends and family. We will sorely miss the practical jokes we wish our workplace allowed and the coworkers we wish we had. We will say goodbye to the grossly mismanaged paper company whose employees can best be described, on a good day, as unmotivated. We will say goodbye to an average, mundane American office glamorized by characters we all grew to love.

On May 16, after nine seasons and just over 200 episodes, America will sadly say goodbye to The Office on NBC. Over the past nine seasons spent together we have experienced what I think is the single greatest American love stories of all time (sorry, Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler), some of the best office pranks (stapler in jello anyone?), and careers that were made right before our eyes. John Krasinski has starred in multiple movies and has even expanded his talents into writing and directing; Rainn Wilson is a verifiable funny man; and Steve Carell has become a bona fide movie star. The show was also a leader in providing online add-ons such as the immensely popular digital shorts.


But hopefully not lost is the show’s origin. In 2001 Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant created a 12-episode (and Christmas special) British show titled The Office, which served as the creative inspiration for its American counterpart.

So in preparation of life without new episodes of Dwight’s beet farm or Jim and Pam’s unforgettable romance, run to your local KDL branch and relive some of the moments that helped America fall in love with Dunder Mifflin and Scranton, Penn., or check out the British version and see if you can catch the origins of the characters many of us will never forget.


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Free eBooks and Open Library

Friday, May 17th, 2013

logo_OL-lgThe use of eBooks is increasing every year, so a new source of free eBooks is always welcome. is a combination library/wiki site which can be edited by anyone but allows books to be checked out or downloaded for a two-week period. The Library of Michigan is one of many libraries across the globe to allow to scan their collection. Of course, copyright is followed so you will not be able to read the latest Patterson book, but the page does link to WorldCat, which lists libraries that own a physical copy of the book.

Check out the site and tell us what you think in the comments below.

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From the Director: This Place Is EPIC!

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

A couple weeks ago I told you we were a finalist for the Excellence in Business EPIC Award from the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce. I’m thrilled to announce that we won the award last night at an event at the Frederik Meijer Gardens! The other finalists for the award were Elzinga & Volkers and Cascade Engineering.

If you want to read about the designation, you’ll find that background in my previous post. In a nutshell, this means the West Michigan-area business community recognizes that KDL is not only a leading governmental entity, but that we understand that successful governmental entities place as much importance as their business counterparts on their fiscal health, service innovation, customer and employee satisfaction and civic responsibility.

This isn’t Lance Werner’s award, or even KDL’s award alone. It’s recognition of all the parts that make up this whole: the nearly 300 KDL staffers who make your library experience great every time; your communities, which recognize how crucial a healthy library system is to its overall health; and to you, our cardholders and taxpayers who support us in all we do. Thank you.

Lance EPIC


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Local Indie Spotlight: Sandy Carlson

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

The Town That DisappearedAfter relocating to a Michigan mill town following the 1871 Chicago fire, 12-year-old Adrian struggles to adjust to small-town life and faces the prospect of losing yet another home, his new friends and his secret hobby. The Town That Disappeared, a historical fiction novel by Battle Creek’s Sandy Carlson, is a delightful coming-of-age story based on real-life events that will teach young readers about area history, compassion and acceptance. It’s a good story to tell, and Carlson does a very nice job. Aimed at middle-school readers, this book definitely would appeal to the Guys Read set.

Carlson’s book is part of the Local Indie @ KDL collection, housed at the Cascade Township and Kentwood (Richard L. Root) branches. It was created to give independent authors, filmmakers and musicians the opportunity to be added to our shelves and to be featured by staff in order to increase viewers, readers and listeners.

Click here to browse our Local Indie @ KDL collection.


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The eBook Everyone is Reading

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

Big Library ReadJoin millions of readers around the world reading one eBook. As part of Overdrive’s Big Library Read program, we are pleased to offer our patrons unlimited access to the eBook The Four Corners of the Sky by Michael Malone now through June 1. No matter how many KDL patrons are reading this eBook, we will have a copy available for you to download.

The Four Corners of the Sky is master storyteller Michael Malone’s novel of love, secrets, and the mysterious bonds of families. Malone brings characters to life as only he can, exploring the questions that defy easy answers: Is love a choice or a calling? Why do the ties of family bind so tightly? And is forgiveness a gift to others…or a gift we give ourselves?

We encourage you to join this global “library book club!”

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2013 Teen Poetry Contest Winners

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

2013 Teen Poetry ContestWord Wise, KDL’s annual teen poetry contest, celebrated its tenth year and it once again was a huge success thanks to all the great teen poets out there. This year, nearly 200 poems were submitted. Library staff reviewed the poems and narrowed down the entries, submitting them to Grand Rapids Poet Laureate, David Cope, for final analysis. Ten winners were chosen and a PDF of the winning poems is available for your reading pleasure.

Congratulations to the winning poets!

A Day’s Worth of Broken Haiku by Alex Courtade

A Ghazal in a Shadow by Alistair Poole

The Script of the Lost by Stephanie Sutherland

Unseen Actors by Karina Bursch

Stars by Makenzie Hutchings

Opening the Worn Cigar Box in the Basement by Hannah Fleming

The Perfect Kiss by Emily Anderson

That Sweet Aroma by Kate Ruehrdanz

The Broken Poet by Paige Jackson

Watching the Stars by Bethany Garvon


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Summer Reading @ KDL Coming Soon!

Tuesday, May 14th, 2013

stonefeetThe school year is winding down, and that means we are gearing up for Summer Reading @ KDL. With programs for kids, teens and adults, we are inviting the whole family to get Grounded in Happiness @ KDL. And if discovering some great books isn’t enough of an incentive to participate, we have also got some awesome prizes up for grabs, including gift cards to nearly 20 different stores, John Ball Zoo memberships, iPods, NOOK eReaders and more!

Summer Reading @ KDL kicks off on Saturday, June 1. Stop by your local branch to sign up, and don’t forget to pick up a program guide while you’re there. Our summer line-up includes dinosaurs, magic, animals, food and music, just to name a few! Watch this video to amp up your excitement!


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FREE Concert Tickets @ KDL!

Monday, May 13th, 2013

WGVU oldies logo 2014KDL is a proud ticket sponsor of the WGVU Real Oldies Concert at the Ball Park! This free event will be held on Saturday, June 1 at 6:00 PM at Fifth Third Ball Park in Comstock Park. Featured bands are The Grass Roots, The Eschelons and The Westside Soul Surfers.

You do not have to have a KDL library card to get a free concert ticket. Watch the video below for full event details, go to Freegal and use your KDL card to download some of the artists’ music (on us!), then pick up your tickets today at any one of our 18 branches!

As part of this fundraiser to help support WGVU Real Oldies and the West Michigan Whitecaps Inner City Youth Baseball/Softball program, a classic car show in the parking lot starts at 3:00 PM.



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