Category Archives: programming

The Sew Cool Sewing Club for Tweens

The first session for the Sew Cool Sewing Club met on Sunday, October 18th at 1:30 pm. The small group started Project One, which was to make a zippered purse with embellishments. It proceeded as follows:

Lesson 1: The Sewing Machine

The 8-12 year olds learned to pivot the fabric to change the directions of the stitches and also to backtack.  By turning a knob they saw the stitches change from a straight line into a zigzag stitch.

When it came to winding the bobbin on the machine, disaster struck when the thread wound around part of the machine.  Ooops.  It was quickly corrected.

Lesson 2: Pinning

Pinning is not an easy task. Attaching the fabric to the edge of zipper took some time. The thickness of the zipper made it challenging.

Lesson 3:  Sewing the Purse

The zipper proved to be awkward in the construction of the first two seams. Once the group had tackled that they moved onto a top stitch and then the final 1/4 inch seem to construct the purse.  Ta Da! Now, wasn’t that simple?

Next week Project Two: a backpack!

Posted by Miss Jane





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Snoring through the Night….

The theme this storytime was snoring, which had Preschool Storytime children trying out some loud and quiet snores before the first book was read.


In the book “Roar of a Snore” by Marsh Diane Arnold, Jack can not sleep. A snore that “rocked the floor and shook the door'” has awaken him. Determined to search out who is snoring like that, Jack wakes the whole house and barn to stop that snore. A kitten, fast asleep in the hay was the culprit. Jack tries to wake the kitten but everyone says just let him sleep. So every ones decides to sleep and snore, with the kitten. What a noise that snoring group made.

We did a trio of hand plays, starting with Boom! Bang! Thunder, then Fireflies, and Two little Apples.  The action rhyme Boom! Bang! Thunder is a fun favorite with the children.

mr night

“Good Night, Mr. Night” by Dan Yaccarino was a quiet lyrical story. A young boy imagines the night, as a man, that wakes after the sun sets. “Mr Night” closes the flowers, quiets the animals and calms the seas. The boy knows that when Mr. Night is out side his window it’s time to go to sleep.  A good book overall.


“Bear Snores On” by Karma Wilson had great illustrations that caught the attention of the children.  In this story, a hibernating bear and his den become a gathering place for creatures during a snow storm.  All the creatures are eating and drinking and having a good time, until a fleck of pepper makes bear sneeze – thus waking him up!  At first bear is mad because he had missed out on all the fun, but then joins the group to have a good time.  After many tales, everyone falls asleep and snores, EXCEPT bear.

The character Bear from “Bear Snores On” was the craft. The bear’s shape was one cut out with paws and his belly glued on. The details of the bear were added with markers.

Posted by Miss Jane

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Spuds Party, a Hit!

Hash browns, French fries, tater tots and chips!  Yummy!-  and all made from potatoes.  This Greenie Program  was started in May with the planting of Kennebec potatoes.  It was an early harvest last Saturday when delicate white spuds were lifted out of the soil.

me twoThe program started with two readings, “Up Down and Around” by Katherine Ayres,  got everyone introduced to vegetables and the direction they grow in. Children shared their own stories about vegetables in their home gardens.  None of kids were growing potatoes in their own gardens, so the excitement was building!


potThe second book was “Two Old Potatoes and Me” by John Coy, which was an informal guide to planting potatoes.  A young girl discovers withered and sprouting spuds in the kitchen cupboard and with her father’s guidance they cut up the spuds and plant them. Watering, hilling the dirt, weeding, and watching out for Colorado Potato Beetles, all lead up to potatoe harvest time.  Would we be digging up potatoes in the Community gardens? Or would our spuds be duds?

After the books everyone went to the gardens and a shovel was retrieved from the shed.  Children gathered around the plants…the spade made  a cut in the soil…POTATOES! POTATOES ! POTATOES!  Nature had not disappointed us.  The children were so excited, we just kept digging. We soon filled the bucket one third full with different sized spuds.  The harvest yielded one potato for each child.

The spud party spilled back inside,  where a blind potato chip tasting got under way.  The flavors of the chips were: salt and vinegar, aged cheddar and sour cream, and garden tomato and basil.  The chip voted best flavor was salt and vinegar. Who knew a vegetable could be so much fun?

Posted by Miss Jane

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Digging with Dogs and Trucks

Who loves  to dig up dirt and have lots of fun doing it?  Why construction trucks and dogs, of course!  Our last “Just Dig It” storytime for the summer was about a little backhoe trying to dig out a rock, a construction crew building a neighborhood truck and a bunch of dogs digging in all the wrong places.

A dump truck name Tom, mentors  Digger, diggera little backhoe, in “Digger and Tom” by Sebastien Braun.  Digger attempts to move a rock at the construction site, but realizes it is much bigger than he first thought. Soon the other construction trucks boast that they will move it with no problem, but they can’t, either!  With encouragement from Tom,  Little Digger starts anew to dig the rock out, and he does! Cheers go up for Digger’s accomplishment from the truck crew.

“The Construction Crew” by Lynn Meltzer was a good book with rhyming text that had the children joining in and finishing the sentences.  If the children couldn’t read the rhyming word for the truck, they crew2were able to identify the vehicle from the pictures.  Children also joined in to talk about their neighborhood and some that were moving to another town.


The last book  was “See Me Dig”by Paul Meisel.  This was just a fun book.  A group of dogs first start digging in the “front yard” of some woodland creatures.   The creatures get mad and start to chase the dogs.  The dogs then run far enough away to start digging in some tropical sand where they then open it to unleash pirate ghosts.  Oh boy – do the dogs run now!  This all ties into construction when the group of dogs end up finding a backhoe at a construction site.  Finally a place to dig!

A dump truck with a moveable parts was the craft. Using  brass fasteners, the bed of the truck was attached to the body of the truck. The wheels were glued on with markers rounding  out the craft experience. Children drew in people and other details on their trucks.

Posted by Miss Jane

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Mucky Mud and More!

Getting down and dirty was the theme for the second week of our “Just Dig It” storytimes.  The children were eager to hear the books read based just on the cover illustrations.

The first book read was the classic “Harry the Dirty Dog” by Gene Zion. The dogmain character Harry created a lot of conversation about the children’s own pet dogs and how they get dirty or stay clean.  The kids shared quite a few of their own pet stories!  The story told of a dog who didn’t like to get a bath, so one day he buries the scrubbing brush and runs away, and in the process gets as dirty as he can. Returning home, Harry is unrecognizable to his family.  The one thing that Harry must do is to dig up the scrub brush and jump in the bathtub for his family to know who he is!

“Dirty Gert” by Ted Arnold, had many going OOOOOOO! when the character dirty gertGert decides to eat dirt and ends up liking it!  This rhyming text tells of a young girl’s habit of eating dirt.  One day “when no one  was the wiser”  it becomes more then eating dirt for Gert “it had photosynthesized her”. She grew roots on her feet and leaves in her hair. Soon lawyers, botanists, and movie directors are involved. Things get worst for Gert but that is when her parents step in; knowing to “trim and fertilizer her”.

I think the last book appealed to the boys in the group with its cover of a muddy i'm dirtybackhoe. “I’m Dirty” by Kate and Jim McMullan told the story of a backhoe and what he does in a typical day.  The backhoe counts down from ten all the trash he must move to the dumpster.  But the dirty part for the backhoe is removing a stump and then leveling the dirt.  This was one dirty machine!

Posted by Miss Jane

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Pawsox Prizes for Summer Reading

pawsoxThe Pawsox would like to take you out to the ballgame this summer and are offering every child who finishes our summer reading program a complimentary ticket!  To receive the free ticket, the child must read at least 5 books in our summer reading program.  We’ll then  give you a form to fill out send in to receive the ticket for a special game on August 13th where children who completed the summer reading program will also be honored with a pre-game ceremony and on-field recognition.

The Pawsox are also offering your child a chance to become an All-Star Reader with a chance to win a grand prize trip for four to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.  To enter, please pick up the entry provided at the Children’s Desk before August 8th, 2013.

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Dig Into Reading – Summer Reading Program 2013

This summer, we’re going beneath the surface into animal burrows, bat caves, tunnels, and mummy lairs.  We’ll dig into gardens and hunt for fossils!  Let’s explore and celebrate all things underground as we Dig Into Reading by reading together this summer.

How the Summer Reading Program works:
1) Create a reading log…
Visit the Children’s Department to sign-up for your free reading log beginning June 7th.  Your goal is to read 5 books before August 10th.  You can do it!  Longer books (think Harry Potter!) will count as more than 1 book.  For every book a child reads or is read to, record it in the reading log, deposit a token into our Reading Rabbit Tunnel, and start on a new book.
2) Win Prizes…
Every week during the Summer Reading Program (starting Friday, June 21st), you can enter for a chance to win a prize – including gift certificates to Frosty Freez, Island Books, Newport Creamery, and more!  Just visit the Children’s Room Desk and show us your progress in your reading log to be stamped, and you can submit an entry into our weekly raffle.
3) Read 5 books to be invited to our Ice Cream Sundae Party on Saturday, August 10th at 11am!

If you’ve read 5 books for your reading log, you’ll receive:
  • 2 free books of your choosing,
  • a book dedicated to you in the library,
  • an Ice Cream Party here at the library!
 Scheduled Performers and Dates:
All programs are FREE.  Some programs require pre-registration and have limited seating.  Please check our website for details on each program.
  • Wednesday, June 26th at 11am:  Music with Sarah Gardner: Underground Songs.  Ages 2 and up.
  • Wednesday, July 10th at 11:45am:  Animal World Experiences: Dino Discovery.  Ages 4 and up.
  • Wednesday, July 17th at 11am:  Mad Science.  Ages 5 and up.
  • Monday, July 22nd at 11am: Rick Morin and the Rhythm Imaginarium.  60 limited seats available, register with Children’s Department.  Ages 4 and up.
  • Wednesday, July 31st at 2pm: Bwana Iguana with Ray Ward.  Ages 4 and up.
  • Wednesday, August 7th at 10:30am: Dig into Reading with Malik the Magic Guy!  Ages 4 and up.
  • Saturday, August 10th at 11am: Summer Ice Cream Party.  This party is for children who have met their reading goal for the summer.  Enjoy a frozen treat, your reading certificate, and pick out your 2 free books!  If you have met your goal but will miss the party, we’ll have book prizes available for you to pick up until mid-September.

This year, in support of the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge Center here in Middletown, we are Reading for Rabbits.  By reading together, we can help make a donation to a wonderful place that offers free nature trails for everyone to enjoy.

For every book that a child reads, they get a “token” from the librarian to put into our Reading Rabbit Hole at the library.  This token will be matched in funding from the Friends of the Middletown Public Library to make a donation to Sachuest.

The more books you read, the more money you raise – so let’s see how much money we can put in our Reading Rabbit Hole this summer!

Storytimes will also be available throughout the summer.
Please check our monthly schedule in the library as well as online at for dates and times.
Also, please visit the library for free or discounted passes to local attractions throughout the summer.

The statewide Rhode Island Summer Reading Program is supported by the RI Office of Library and Information Services with funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, McDonald’s Local Owner/Operators of Rhode Island, the Pawtucket Red Sox, Citizens Bank and Pepsi. Local support includes RI Children’s and Young Adult Librarians, and the Friends of the Middletown Public Library.

A special Thank You to the Friends of the Middletown Public Library for their support of the Summer Reading Program!
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Afterschool Art for Kids with ABC Architecture…and a party!

Tuesday, April 30th at 4pm: Birdhouse Design and Decoration

Start with a simple wooden birdhouse and see what it becomes.  Children will be provided with a wooden birdhouse to decorate, and all birdhouses will be displayed in the librarytreehouse for a month.

Pre-registration is required for limited class size and supplies.  Ages 5 and up.  Please visit or call the library at 401-846-1573 to register.

Following the Afterschool Art program we’ll have a party and short speaking program in the Children’s Department to celebrate the completion of our Alphabet Houses display and the new puppet theater at 5pm.  Refreshments will be served!

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March Programs

To register for storytimes or programs, please visit or call the Children’s Department at 401-846-1573

Special Programs

Friday, March 1st at 11am: Dr. Seuss Stories
Celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with us with a storytime of  “Cat in the Hat” and “Green Eggs and Ham”.  Ages 3 and up.  No registration required.


 Wednesday, March 6th at 4pm: World Read Aloud Day
Dress up as your favorite book character and join us for a read aloud followed by a craft and popcorn party in the Children’s Department.  All ages welcome.  No registration required.  Free.


Thursday, March 14th at 4pm: St. Patrick’s Day Lucky Storytime and Craft
May the luck o’ the Irish be with you as we listen to some seasonal tales and get crafty with shamrocks.  Ages 4 and up.  Must pre-register for limited class size and supplies.  Visit or call the Children’s Department at 846-1573 to register.  Free.
Thursday, March 21st at 4pm:  Celebrate Spring Craft Program
Celebrate the first day of SPRING with us by making spring themed crafts.  Ages 3 and up. Must pre-register for limited class size and supplies.  Visit or call the Children’s Department at 846-1573 to register.  Free.



Funtime Storytime: 

Funtime Storytime is a drop-in 30 minute program for ages 3-5.  No registration needed!  These storytimes consist of age-appropriate stories, songs, and rhymes.  Storytimes are followed by a playtime! This 4 week session meets on Mondays at 11am on February 11th and 25th.  No storytime on the 18th; closed for President’s Day.  Also held on March 4, 11, 18, 25.

Preschool Storytime:

Register your child for age-appropriate stories, songs, rhymes, and snacks or a simple craft.  Ages 4-5.  Registration is required.  FREE.  This 4 week session meets on Tuesdays at 11am on February 26th, and March 5th, 12th, and 19th.

Toddler Time:
Toddler Time is a special storytime for 2 & 3 year olds with a parent or caregiver.   Storytimes consist of age-appropriate stories, songs, fingerplays, and rhymes, with a simple craft or snack.  Registration is required.  FREE.  This 4 week session meets on Wednesdays at 11am on February 27th, March 6th, 13th, and 20th.
Babytime Playgroup:
Babytime Playgroup is an informal, drop-in playgroup for babies from ages birth-24 months.  Enjoy socializing with other parents and babies while playing with specially selected age-appropriate toys and board books.  The library will provide toys, early literacy resources, and parenting materials for you and your child to enjoy in a warm and supportive environment with other parents and caregivers.  Meets on Fridays from 10am – 11am.


Some Helpful Storytime and Program Guidelines:
  1. Please call ahead if you know you won’t be able to make it to a program you registered for – we often have waiting lists of people we can then call and invite to the program!
  2. We begin each program right on time, and you do not want to miss any fun – so get here early!
  3. Visit the restroom before the program begins to avoid accidents and distractions…
  4. If your child isn’t in the mood for storytime, is crying, or being disruptive, you can always leave early and try again another day.
  5. Parents, please listen to the stories.  If your child sees you talking to other people during the storytime, they are going to model their behavior after you!
  6. For toddler storytimes, parents are encouraged to sit with children to model listening and the fingerplays with their children.
  7. Enjoy yourselves!  Each program is designed to introduce kids to the pleasures of reading, movement, and storytelling.

Afterschool Programs

Afterschool Art for Kids

Tuesday, March 12th at 4:00pm: Oil Pastel and Watercolor Resist:

Children will use oil pastels to create a drawing, and with a wash of watercolor over it, it’s a masterpiece!  Ages 5 and up.  Must pre-register for limited class size and supplies.  Visit or call the Children’s Department at 846-1573 to register.  Free.

Afterschool Art for Kids
Tuesday, March 26th at 4pm: Watercolor and Salt Painting
 It’s amazing what can happen on paper when you combine something as simple as salt and watercolors.
Ages 5 and up.  Must pre-register for limited class size and supplies.  Visit or call the Children’s Department at 846-1573 to register.  Free.
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Pirates Converge for First Annual Pirate Games

Welcome to Pirate Month at the MPL Children’s Library!  Blackbeard and Captain Kidd would of quake in their boots with the scallywags that made their way to our First Annual Pirate Party Palooza!

With a chorus of pirates giving there best pirate talk, we started the party with a reading of “Pirate Pete’s Talk Like a Pirate” by Kim Kennedy.  In the book,  Pirate Pete interviews fellow scurvy dogs for his crew to see just how much thievin’ and lootin’ they have in them. Each one fails and is made to walk the plank, ” cause they can’t talk like a pirate”.  In the end, Pirate Pete’s realizes that his trusty parrot was the only crew he needed!

Our crew started the activities with decorating a foam pirate hat with plenty of foam stickers, and a candy cane and foam cup to make a hook like Captain Hook (which was to be used later for one of the games). There were a few  hardy ones that ventured to get  mustaches and beards with pirate face paint.  Our pirates were getting more and more into character!

After the crafts were done, the pirates made their way to the Pirate Pretzel Pickup game. With their newly made pirate hooks, each pirate was to pick up as many pretzels with their hook in one minute.  One young female pirate collected eleven pretzels!

The other game was one of matching pirate symbols; the younger pirates had lots of fun with this game.  It was played in teams of two and one on one.

Finally our raucous crew headed out to find pirate booty in the Children’s library with our on going treasure hunt. It was a good time had by all!

Posted my Miss Jane

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