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Summer Learning Track: Here Comes Kindergarten!

Ready or not, kindergarten is coming! Use those long, fun-filled summer days to help your young child prepare for school success. Sharing learning moments each day will have your pre-school child ready to thrive in kindergarten and beyond.

What is a Learning Moment?

A learning moment occurs when you and your child explore the world around through reading, singing, talking, playing and writing. Check out the tips below on creating simple and fun learning moments with your child. Sharing these moments each day will have your rising kindergartener on the road to a happy and successful school career.

  • Read: Read together each day! Share books in a wide variety of styles and topics to explore your child's natural interests and expand their knowledge of the world. Don't forget to visit your closest library location for storytime.
  • Sing: Sing in the car, practice your rhymes while waiting in line, make up silly songs about what you are doing together. Children who know eight nursery rhymes by heart by the time they are four years old are among the best readers at age eight.
  • Talk: Talk about what you see at the grocery store, out the car window, or just chat about your day. Conversation helps your child make connections and learn new words. Remember: young children may take between 5 and 12 seconds to answer a question, so wait for it!
  • Play: Playing is important work! Children learn about the world and develop a multitude of skills and abilities through play, so play every day. Break out the dress up clothes, create a band out of pots and pans, build a sheet and chair tent, or just get those hearts pumping with a game of tag.
  • Write: ​ Scribble and snip your way to school readiness. Those early scribbles build the motor skills that are necessary for writing, so bring on the crayons! Scribble and write together. Talking about what you're writing helps make the connection between written and spoken language.
  • Check out the books below for some reading fun, or ask the staff at your nearest library location for recommendations. Remember: fines will not accrue on children's items checked out between June and November 2014, so take home as many as you can carry! Get started by using this sample Learning Track, or develop your own.


    Book! Book! Book! by Deborah Bruss
    Amazon Says: When the children go back to school, the animals on the farm have nothing to do. That is...until they discover the library. But when Cow, Pig, Horse, and Goat try to check out more...
    Amazon Says: When the children go back to school, the animals on the farm have nothing to do. That is...until they discover the library. But when Cow, Pig, Horse, and Goat try to check out a book, they are met with a very puzzled librarian. Why can't she understand? It is only when Hen gives it a try - "book! Book! BOOK!" - that the animals finally get what they want! "Young kids...[will] love making all the animal noises and recognize how it feels when an adult doesn't understand." - Booklist less...
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    Amazon Says: Pete the Cat is back—and this time he’s rocking in his school shoes. Pete discovers the library, the lunchroom, the playground, and lots of other cool places at school. An more...
    Amazon Says: Pete the Cat is back—and this time he’s rocking in his school shoes. Pete discovers the library, the lunchroom, the playground, and lots of other cool places at school. And no matter where he goes, Pete never stops moving and grooving and singing his song . . . because it’s all good. less...
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    Lola at the Library by Anna McQuinn
    Amazon Says: Lola has a big smile on her face. Why? Because it's Tuesday--and on Tuesdays, Lola and her mommy go to the library. Join Lola in this cozy celebration of books and the people more...
    Amazon Says: Lola has a big smile on her face. Why? Because it's Tuesday--and on Tuesdays, Lola and her mommy go to the library. Join Lola in this cozy celebration of books and the people who love them. less...
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    Lola Loves Stories by Anna McQuinn
    Amazon Says: Lovable Lola is back in this imaginative sequel to the best-selling LOLA AT THE LIBRARY. Lola loves to go to the library with her daddy. Every night she reads a new story, an more...
    Amazon Says: Lovable Lola is back in this imaginative sequel to the best-selling LOLA AT THE LIBRARY. Lola loves to go to the library with her daddy. Every night she reads a new story, and the next day, she acts it out. One day she's a fairy princess, the next day she goes on a trip to Lagos! She becomes a tiger, a farmer, a pilot. . . . what will Lola be next? Children and adults will love following along with Lola's adventures. LOLA LOVES STORIES celebrates imaginative thinking and the importance of books as a way to inspire young minds. less...
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    Amazon Says: The bestselling, award-winning team of Yolen and Teague are back with another dinosaur tale--a fourth full-length picture book about how dinosaurs behave at school. Everyone' more...
    Amazon Says: The bestselling, award-winning team of Yolen and Teague are back with another dinosaur tale--a fourth full-length picture book about how dinosaurs behave at school. Everyone's favorite dinosaurs are back--and this time they are going to school. More fun dinosaur antics await. These prehistoric pupils are in a class of their own! As in their previous books, Yolen and Teague capture children's rambunctious natures with playful read-aloud verse and wonderfully amusing pictures. less...
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    Llama Llama Misses Mama by Anna Dewdney
    Amazon Says: Strange new teacher. Strange new toys. Lots of kids and lots of noise! What would Llama like to do? Llama Llama feels so new . . . It’s Llama Llama’s first day of p more...
    Amazon Says: Strange new teacher. Strange new toys. Lots of kids and lots of noise! What would Llama like to do? Llama Llama feels so new . . . It’s Llama Llama’s first day of preschool! And Llama Llama’s mama makes sure he’s ready. They meet the teachers. See the other children. Look at all the books and games. But then it’s time for Mama to leave. And suddenly Llama Llama isn’t so excited anymore. Will Mama Llama come back? Of course she will. But before she does, the other children show Llama Llama how much fun school can be! Activities for Llama Llama Misses Mama by Anna Dewdney Watch a Video less...
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    Yoko by Rosemary Wells
    Amazon Says: Mmm, Yoko's mom has packed her favorite for lunch today—sushi! But her classmates don't think it looks quite so yummy. "Ick!" says one of the Franks. "It's seaweed!" They' more...
    Amazon Says: Mmm, Yoko's mom has packed her favorite for lunch today—sushi! But her classmates don't think it looks quite so yummy. "Ick!" says one of the Franks. "It's seaweed!" They're not even impressed by her red bean ice cream dessert. Of course, Mrs. Jenkins has a plan that might solve Yoko's problem. But will it work with the other children in class? Now in paperback for the first time, this tender story from Rosemary Wells demonstrates the author's uncanny understanding of the pleasures and pains of an ordinary school day. less...
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    Froggy Goes to School by Jonathan London
    Amazon Says: Froggy's mother knows that everyone's nervous on the first day of school. "Not me!" says Froggy, and together they leapfrog to the bus stop—flop flop flop. Froggy's exuber more...
    Amazon Says: Froggy's mother knows that everyone's nervous on the first day of school. "Not me!" says Froggy, and together they leapfrog to the bus stop—flop flop flop. Froggy's exuberant antics, complete with sound effects, will delight his many fans and reassure them that school can be fun. "This is a great read-aloud with sounds and words that encourage active participation...A charming story to calm those pre-school jitters." —School Library Journal less...
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    Yoko Writes Her Name by Rosemary Wells
    Amazon Says: Yoko is so excited for the first day of school. She’s just learned to write her name. But when Mrs. Jenkins asks Yoko to show everyone, Olive and Sylvia make fun of her Jap more...
    Amazon Says: Yoko is so excited for the first day of school. She’s just learned to write her name. But when Mrs. Jenkins asks Yoko to show everyone, Olive and Sylvia make fun of her Japanese writing. “Yoko can’t write. She’s only scribbling!” The teasing continues as Yoko shares her favorite book at show and tell, and reads it back to front. That evening, Yoko declares that she can’t go back to school. “How can I when my reading and writing are a failure?” she asks. Luckily a little wisdom from her Mama, a little cooperation from Mrs. Jenkins, and a lot of enthusiasm from her classmates teach Yoko the most important lesson of the year: that friendship can bridge cultural differences. Not only does Yoko learn to read and write in English and graduate Kindergarten with her classmates, but everyone’s name appears in two languages on their diploma—even Olive’s and Sylvia’s! less...
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    Bats at the Library by Brian Lies
    Amazon Says: Houghton Mifflin Company Another inky evening’s here— The air is cool and calm and clear. Can it be true? Oh, can it be? Yes!—Bat Night at the library! Join the free-for- more...
    Amazon Says: Houghton Mifflin Company Another inky evening’s here— The air is cool and calm and clear. Can it be true? Oh, can it be? Yes!—Bat Night at the library! Join the free-for-all fun at the public library with these book-loving bats! Shape shadows on walls, frolic in the water fountain, and roam the book-filled halls until it’s time for everyone, young and old, to settle down into the enchantment of story time. Brian Lies’ joyful critters and their nocturnal celebration cast library visits in a new light. Even the youngest of readers will want to join the batty book-fest! less...
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    Chu's Day by Neil Gaiman
    Amazon Says: A New York Times bestselling picture book from Newbery Medal–winning author Neil Gaiman and acclaimed illustrator Adam Rex!Chu is a little panda with a big sneeze. When Chu more...
    Amazon Says: A New York Times bestselling picture book from Newbery Medal–winning author Neil Gaiman and acclaimed illustrator Adam Rex!Chu is a little panda with a big sneeze. When Chu sneezes, bad things happen. But as Chu and his parents visit the library, the diner, and the circus, will anyone hear Chu when he starts to feel a familiar tickle in his nose?Chu's Day is a story that reflects upon how young children aren't always listened to…sometimes to calamitous effect.Supports the Common Core State Standards less...
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    Amazon Says: Dinosaur is going to one of his favorite places: the library! On the way, he invites his friends--a lonesome turtle, a sad owl and more-- to roar along with him. But how will more...
    Amazon Says: Dinosaur is going to one of his favorite places: the library! On the way, he invites his friends--a lonesome turtle, a sad owl and more-- to roar along with him. But how will his roaring go over at the library? Has Dinosaur finally met his match in Storytime? By combining everyone's favorite feisty red dinosaur with a variety of animals and a celebration of reading, author-illustrator-designer Bob Shea has created another irresistable romp for toddlers and parents to enjoy together. less...
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    Amazon Says: The charming and spirited Lottie Paris is back—and she loves the library! Lottie Paris has a favorite place. The library! She loves to go there and read about space more...
    Amazon Says: The charming and spirited Lottie Paris is back—and she loves the library! Lottie Paris has a favorite place. The library! She loves to go there and read about space. She knows there are rules at the library, but sometimes they are not so easy to follow. The library is Carl’s favorite place, too. And he loves to read about dinosaurs. When Lottie and Carl meet, they become fast friends. Now Lottie reads about dinosaurs, and Carl loves space! After joyously introducing Lottie Paris in Lottie Paris Lives Here, Angela Johnson and Scott Fischer have created a brand-new world for Lottie to dream in—alongside a brand-new friend. less...
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    Amazon Says: A Common Core Exemplar Text by an award-winning author-illustrator team Tomás is a son of migrant workers. Every summer he and his family follow the crops north from Texas t more...
    Amazon Says: A Common Core Exemplar Text by an award-winning author-illustrator team Tomás is a son of migrant workers. Every summer he and his family follow the crops north from Texas to Iowa, spending long, arduous days in the fields. At night they gather around to hear Grandfather's wonderful stories. But before long, Tomás knows all the stories by heart. "There are more stories in the library," Papa Grande tells him.  The very next day, Tomás meets the library lady and a whole new world opens up for him. Based on the true story of the Mexican-American author and educator Tomás Rivera, a child of migrant workers who went on to become the first minority Chancellor in the University of California system, this inspirational story suggests what libraries--and education--can make possible.  Raul Colón's warm, expressive paintings perfectly interweave the harsh realities of Tomás's life, the joyful imaginings he finds in books, and his special relationships with a wise grandfather and a caring librarian. This book has been selected as a Common Core State Standards Text Exemplar (Grades K-1, Read-Aloud Stories) in Appendix B less...
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