As we kick off the New Year, the Council of Regional Public Library System Administrators (CRPLSA) is pleased to commence season two of Once Upon a Reader. Aimed at pre-K children and their families, this statewide one-book program promotes Minnesota children’s literature and encourages families to Talk, Sing, Read, Write and Play together – five practices critical to early literacy skills development.
A panel of youth services librarians from across the state selected Ten Pigs: An Epic Bath Adventure, by Minnesota author/illustrator Derek Anderson, as the focus of this year’s program. “Anderson combines humor with simple, straightforward rhymes to successfully convey basic counting concepts,” praises School Library Journal. “Because of its big, vivid illustrations and rhythmic, sprightly rhymes, [Ten Pigs] is ideal for sharing with a group as a read-aloud.”
CRPLSA launched Once Upon a Reader’s inaugural season in 2014, with funding from Minnesota’s Legacy Amendment Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund. This year’s season will be observed from March to October and include a diverse mix of tie-in activities, enabling libraries of all sizes and in all corners of the state to participate in the program.
Beginning this spring, Derek Anderson will travel across the state entertaining and educating kids in each participating regional library system with his “Ten Pigs Trunk Show.” During this portable one-man show, the author will read the book aloud, lead a reenactment, sketch, sing, and more. Visit onceuponareader.org, or click HERE, to see when Derek will be in a community near you.
Additional Once Upon a Reader activity materials are offered through the program’s website. Available for purchase are a waterproof and reusable Story Stroll, sign-sized book pages that allow you to display the Ten Pigs story outside a library or along a path; an Epic Storytime Kit, which includes your own copy of Ten Pigs, four other bath time and barnyard tales, and tie-in crafts; and a 15-piece Ten Pigs Play Kit for libraries to circulate among families and care providers.
Free and downloadable resources include a Ten Pigs scavenger hunt, matching game, drawing activity, bubble adventure, and more!
As Once Upon a Reader ramps up in earnest, library staff are encouraged to join with peers across the state in OUR Resource Share, a Facebook group devoted to the sharing of Once Upon a Reader photos and stories, programming ideas, and resource suggestions. In addition to keeping the conversation going, this Facebook resource allows members to share and download documents where helpful.