Common Core Panel Presentation: March 20, 2013

Common Core State Standards & Literacy Panel Presentation

App Evaluation Round-Up

On Thursday, January 28, we had an app evaluation program here at the children's library. We discussed screen time, how to select educational apps, and the landscape of app creation today.

We love hearing your questions about app evaluation and screen time, so feel free to contact us any time. And don't forget, you can check out our Early Literacy iPads (for 5 and under) or Tween Tabs (for 8 and up) for one week with your library card!

The handouts and research we had printed out included:

Family Time with Apps: A Guide to Using Apps with Your Kids by the Joan Ganz-Cooney Center

How to Choose iPhone Apps for Kids on the PBS Parents Page

Using Screen Media With Young Children from Zero to Three

Can Your Preschooler Learn Anything From an iPad App? from Slate

Our own App Evaluation worksheet


Other resources we can recommend:

American Academy of Pediatrics: AAP Report on children and media.
PBS Parents: Studies/articles for parents of kids ages 3 +.
Kirkus Reviews: Reviews on the latest in picture book apps.
National Association for the Education of Young Children: Resources from a national organization.

School Library Journal: A collection of app reviews by librarians.

Fred Rogers Center: National leaders on early literacy and media.

Darien Library Catalog: Books about children and digital media.

Common Sense Media: Reviews based on age and content.

Cybils Award: Annual awards for excellent apps for kids.

Children's Technology Review: App reviews and subscription-based articles.

Parents Choice Awards: Awards by parents, for parents.

Tech Topics for Parents

Book discussions for parents on tech topics.
Book discussions for parents on tech topics.

Finding it difficult to navigate new digital terrain? Parents are invited to attend book discussions on topics such as screentime and networked teens. Breakfast will be served.

Thursday, February 11th from 10 to 11 a.m.
Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age from Picture Books to eBooks and Everything in Between by Jason Boog

This title is also available on ebook! 

Open to Adults: No registration necessary

Thursday, March 10th from 10 to 11 a.m.
It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens By Danah Boyd
Open to Adults: No registration necessary

When Tragedy Happens - How to Talk with Kids

Photo courtesy of Flickr user iStock_000011923856Medium
Photo courtesy of Flickr user iStock_000011923856Medium

It is often difficult to know what to say to children when tragedies occur, especially when we are trying to make sense of the world's events ourselves. 

Below are resources that can help you discern how best to communicate with your family. 

Explaining the News to Our Kids - Common Sense Media 

Helping Children Cope: Tips for Talking about Tragedy - Mayo Clinic

Talking with Kids about News: How to Help Kids Feel Safe After Tragedy - PBS Kids

Parent Resources:Tragic Events - The Fred Rogers Company 

Meaningful Inclusion Benefits All Students

William Henderson, Ed.D., author of The Blind Advantage will be at the Library on April 27
William Henderson, Ed.D., author of The Blind Advantage will be at the Library on April 27

Monday, April 27th from 12 noon to 1:30 pm

William Henderson, Ed.D., author of The Blind Advantage: How Going Blind Made me a Stronger Principal and How Including Children with Disabilities Made the School Better for Everyone, will present practical strategies for developing successful inclusive schools.

Dr. Henderson will discuss actions that individuals can take and policies that schools can develop to promote a culture of inclusion, to provide instruction with universal design and specialized supports, and to build a community that collaborates and problem solves. He will also highlight how including students with disabilities can be a catalyst for improving teaching and learning for everyone.

As a first-year teacher, Dr. Henderson learned he was gradually losing his vision and was advised he “should get out of education.” Instead he continued to persevere and went on to become principal of the Patrick O’Hearn Elementary School which is now renamed the Dr. William W. Henderson K- 12 Inclusion School.

This program is co-sponsored by SEPAC, the Special Education Parent Advisory Committee. 


There will also be an educator presentation from 3:30 to 5 PM. 


Your librarians' reading styles!

Are you nervous your child is reading the wrong kinds of books? Or maybe you're a kid who is worried you read slow. Either way, check out these new comics that show the Children's Librarian's reading profiles. They answered the questions:

  • What do you like to read (genre, age range, etc)
  • What is your reading speed: slow, medium, fast?
  • What do you wish you could tell yourself when you were learning to read?
  • What’s the best thing about reading?
  • What’s your favorite reading advice for parents?


See them all here!

Online Security Seminar

Online Security Seminar presented by Miss Amanda
Online Security Seminar presented by Miss Amanda

Thursday, March 26th at 6 p.m.

Our online world can be daunting — how do we keep ourselves and our families safe from identity theft, computer viruses, and online predators? Come learn tips from our tech savvy librarians about how to protect your computer, accounts, and self online.

This program will take place in the 3rd Floor Conference Room. 


ADHD and Mood Disorders: New Strategies and Treatments

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Steven Yeh
Photo courtesy of Flickr user Steven Yeh

Monday, March 23rd at 7pm

Darien Library and Darien Special Education Parent Advisory Committee (SEPAC) are pleased to present Dr. Alan Wachtel on ADHD & Mood Disorders: New Strategies and Treatments.  

Dr. Wachtel will discuss strategies, medication options and treatments for children who struggle with mood and attention. He will cover school-based accommodations and strategies. Research has shown that parents and teachers need to foster a child’s focus to maximize a child’s ability to learn. In addition, he will address the benefits and risks of various treatments and decisions when to commence or postpone treatment at various stages of a child's life.

Dr. Wachtel is the author of The Attention Deficit Answer Book. He is a board certified psychiatrist and is the founder and director of Familyhealth Associates and a Distinguished Life Fellow APA.

In the Louise Parker Berry Community Room.

Register Online

Road Trip Audiobooks

Going on an hours-long road trip for the holidays this year? Dreading having to play "I-Spy"  for hours and mediate fights over the family iPad or laptop? We've got an audiobook list that will keep the whole family entertained during your journeys near and far. Stop in to check them out before we close on December 24th!

iFamily: Programs for Parents

Registration opens Monday, December 29th


21 Things for 21st Century Parents

Monday, January 12th to Friday, March 13th

An 8-week online course for parents. From Maker culture to wearable technology, and robotics to 3D printing, you will learn about the latest and most influential new technologies. Participate at your own pace by completing mini-assignments (“things”) either online or by attending a program in the Library. The more you participate, the greater your chance of winning our grand prize raffle on Friday, March 13th. Weekly discussion topics will include: eBooks, Maker Culture, Health Tech/Wearable Tech, 3D Printing and Design, Digital Learning, and Robotics.



Starting a Handmade Business

Tuesday, January 13th at 10am

Do you want to start your own handmade business but are not sure where to begin? Go on a guided online tour with Darien resident and handmade business educator, Jennifer St. Jean. Her sales numbers are in the thousands, and her items are sold in boutiques and at Saks Fifth Avenue. Her online shop is 



Family Digital Scavenger Hunt

Friday, January 16th at 6pm

Families will compete in this touchscreen event that will have them racing through the stacks. Teams are welcome to bring their own devices.



Family Tech Night

Tuesday, January 20th at 5pm
Monday, March 2nd at 5pm

Find out how to read eBooks on your iPhone, Kindle, or other device and play with the Library's iPads, Nooks and other tech gadgets. We will also explore content available through Hoopla, OverDrive, and the 3M Cloud Library.


Raising Teens to Thrive and Succeed in a Digital World

Thursday, January 22nd from 9:30 to 11:30am

Our children are being referred to as a “Post Human Society” because they are the first generation to be more comfortable with technology than with actual human beings.  In this talk, you will learn how to meet this new challenge and how to develop a deeper connection with your teen. This program is co-sponsored by YWCA Parent Awareness.


Family Fingerknitting

Tuesday, January 27th at 5pm

Families with children in Grades 3-6: Explore crafting, digital learning, and learn about Maker culture with the children’s librarians as we explore the technique of Fingerknitting. No knitting experience—or knitting needles!—required.



Stay Fit with Wii

Wednesday, February 4th at 5pm

Put on your workout shoes and join us in the Children’s Library for some friendly fitness play featuring active Wii games like Just Dance 2015, Wii Sports, and more.



Film: Terms and Conditions May Apply

Monday, February 9th at 7pm
Saturday, February 21st at 2pm

Have you read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policies on your favorite websites and apps? Of course not. But those agreements allow corporations to do things with your personal information that you could never even imagine. Through interviews with technology thought leaders and futurists, Terms and Conditions documents the slippery slope of internet privacy. NR, 79 minutes. 



Declutter Your Digital Self

Tuesday, February 24th at 12pm

Is your desktop hard to navigate? Do you want to understand how to better manage your digital self? Come and learn about methods for de-cluttering your hard drive and backing up your files through Cloud programs like Dropbox and Google Drive.



Appy Hour

Thursday, February 26th at 6pm

Pull up a chair, enjoy a cocktail, and learn about the latest and greatest apps for Apple and Android devices.



Online Security Seminar

Wednesday, February 25th at 10am
Thursday, March 5th at 6pm

Our online world can be daunting — how do we keep ourselves and our families safe from identity theft, computer viruses, and online predators? Come learn tips from our tech savvy librarians about how to protect your computer, accounts, and self online.

Register for Wednesday, February 25th

Register for Thursday, March 5th


Senior Moments: Gabbin' With Grandkids

Tuesday, March 3rd at 3pm

Long distance grandparents can stay in touch with new technology like Skype and Apple’s FaceTime. We will show you how to utilize these technologies to read your grandkids a cherished book or just gab about what’s good. Support for Senior Moments is provided by the Connecticut State Library (CSL) and the Institute for Museum and Library Sciences (IMLS), an independent federal agency whose mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas.



Family LEGO Mindstorms

Saturday, March 7th at 2pm

Families with children in Grades 4-6: Explore robotics by building and commanding your own LEGO  Mindstorms robot with a computer.


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