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Curated news and ideas
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Welcome to Think Outside the Stacks.  As always I love to hear feedback and suggestions for content at saxton.elizabeth@gmail.com or @BethReads on Twitter. Just a little survey as I'm trying to nail down the combination that gets you only the best ideas on the regular. 

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Here's What I Have for You This Week:


On "Kindness" and "Niceness" and justice and kids (via Laurel Snyder)
Author Laurel Snyder explains why being kind is not always about being nice. 

Children's Books About the Immigrant Experience(via Book Riot)
A great list from Book Riot, although I would pay special attention to the books by those authors who are a part of the culture being represented. 

Be a Bucket Filler (via Playful Learning)
A child-friendly way to show how important it is to spread kindness to those around us using the book How Full is Your Bucket? For Kids. The post also includes printables if you want to encourage deeper thinking on the topic. 

Finding Hope in a TARDIS (via Black Girls Create)
Though written last summer this post on finding hope and connection through fandom is more relevant than ever. It's also a good reminder not to assume what kind of things people are into because of who they are or where they're from. 
Printable Alphabet Gross Motor Cards (via From ABCS to ACTs)
If you want to add some gross motor activities to your early childhood programs here are some cute cards with actions you can tie to a letter or theme.

 

Hey, Students! Applying for College Aid is Easier! (But Still Hard)  (via NPR)
It's true that the current FAFSA application process is easier than before, but it's not without its challenges, especially for the students who need it most. Here are some of the common roadblocks students are facing so you and they can be prepared. 

The Great Robot Showdown (via Colleen Graves)
Another time when I have to break the rules and do a librarian source because I'd hate to think some of you miss it. Here's a comparison chart of the major robots on the market you might be considering adding to your library including recommended age groups, ease of use, durability and a lot more!

How to Encrypt Your Entire Life in Less Than an Hour (or, The Law Abiding Citizen's Guide to Privacy) (via freecodecamp)
For absolutely no reason at all here are some things you can do to keep your accounts and data secure. At least do #1 to #4 and encourage your library to offer a program about data security to the public. 
 
World Map is Accurately Redesigned and Corrected (via Culture N Lifestyle)
A Japanese designer has created a map that accurately represents size and distance. If you've studied maps since the fourth grade you know that most map projections are horribly biased to the Western world. I share this because I think a program looking at different map versions in your collection and maybe having participants map create a detailed map of their own neighborhood would be really cool. 

 


12 Life Changing Classroom Art Tricks (via Pocket of Preschool)
I may have shared one or two of these before, and not all of them apply, but if you only see the beauty of putting your glitter in dollar store salt shakers then my work here is done. 

8 Kid-Friendly Writing Warm-Ups (via Write Shop)
It's always hard facing a blank page, and our younger writers are no exception. Here are some ideas for warm-up exercises to kick that writer's block to the curb. They look to be most appropriate for 8-11-year-olds. 

Foam Blocks in Water (via Still Playing School)
If you run a sensory or otherwise hands-on storytime this combination of shape blocks and water is a great learning activity most kids will love. They can build, sort, and count the blocks as well as explore how they get sticky with water. There are some links to other foam block activities to make the most of your investment. 

Featured Book: Radiant Child by Javaka Steptoe


Radiant Child is, as it says, the story of a young artist named Jean-Michel Basquiat. This is truly an amazing book where the art, words, and choice of information in the last pages comes together perfectly. This is a serious award contender. 

After sharing the book you could show children some examples of Basquiat's work and look for the crown, eye, and transportation related symbols Steptoe discusses in the book. Encourage children to create their own art either using Basquiat's symbols or better yet by creating some symbols of their own. 
The Longest Running Series in YA (via Epic Reads)
If you're looking to do some replacement ordering here is a helpful infographic with the longest running series. It's from July, so keep that in mind. 

Just for Fun


Italian Pastry Chef Creates Miniature Worlds with Desserts (via Bored Panda)
Pretty much what it sounds like. 

31 Animals That Use Each Other as Pillows (via Bored Panda)
Cute cuddles for those of us in the path of cold weather. 

The Cannon of Literature (via Incidental Comics)
Cannon as a metaphor for canon. Nerdy lol. 

We all have those days....


 
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