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Education and Teaching

View of Archives front doors

October is not only the month of pumpkin spice, ghosts, and candy corn...it's also Archives' Month! That means it's the month that we honor the work of all archivists, and work to raise awareness of the importance of historical documents and records. So, in celebration of this fun-filled month, here's a little behind-the-scenes peak at Metro Archives and their staff. 

Children can learn the basic rules of social engagement from an early age.  Nashville Public Library's catalog has the resources for teaching and learning social skills.

Book Cover of Sharing a Smile by Nicki Kramar

Picture books can help children (and their parents) process big emotions around major life events, such as the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Children's book creators have risen to the occasion and produced books that children and adults can both enjoy. 

Book cover of My First Day

The first day of elementary school is a big event in a child’s life. Some children mark the day with new outfits and a bevy of pictures. Others, meanwhile, begin the first of many intrepid commutes to school. This delightful picture book details one such adventure to get to school. 

Book Cover of Nicky & Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued

There are not many picture books about the Holocaust. Published earlier this year, Nicky & Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued tells two intertwined stories. 

whoever you are

Looking for new favorites that support early reading skills like rhyme, repetition, colors, and numbers? Here is a list of books with diverse representation and inclusive themes for a young audience. 

James Estes' voter registration card, 1945

Since most of this year has seemed like an episode out of a sci-fi novel, and it's not lost on anyone that we're living through a major historical event, here are some suggestions of important things you might consider keeping for posterity's sake. 

Book Cover of Luci Soars by Lulu Delacre

 Luci Soars is the newest book by prolific author and illustrator Lulu Delacre. When you're different, it can seem like the whole world is against you. How can you rise above it? 

Book Cover of a New Kind of Wild

When Ren has to move to a gray and concrete city, will he miss his home in the wild and beautiful el Yunque too much to see anything magical ever again? Published just this year, A New Kind of Wild is a delightful, imaginative picture book.

Lauri Newell doesn’t think of her life as extraordinary.

“But then again,” she says, “I’m getting to nurture my family and our dreams at the same time."

With the extra time on our hands after a month of quarantine, maybe there are other things we can spend our time on, like preserving family ephemera. This is an assisted blog post from my coworker, Christine Irizarry, who writes about the importance of family letters. And the latter part talks about preserving your family records. 

With the changing times and means to educate while schools are closed, it can be difficult for parents-now-turned-teachers to homeschool on such short notice, and possibly without a lot of resources. That's where Metro Archives and the Library come in handy. And who says educating can't be fun? So here's a word search I created with words and names pertaining to the founding of the city of Nashville. 

During these times of sheltering at home, patrons and staff alike are missing regular in-person library programming. Here at NPL in 2020, we also had to postpone special in-person library events for the year's Nashville Reads title, Dreamers by Yuyi Morales. While that is sad, the good news is that you can still enjoy books and activities inspired by the marvelous Yuyi Morales's works while you're at home! 

Parent and caregivers, we know it's challenging to have your children at home during this pandemic. Here is a roundup of online resources that can help kids stay engaged in learning—preventing their brains from "turning to mush" while they are not in school.

Periods of self-distancing and isolation can make us feel anxious and BORED. Here are some recommendations for ebooks that help you fill the time with activity or stillness.

In honor of African American History Month, and to highlight a few individuals in Metro Archives' new display on Nashville women, this blog post is dedicated to a few notable women of Music City.

Books can serve as both windows and mirrors. All children should have access to both. We provide curated lists featuring diverse children from varying backgrounds and experiences.

Right now, in the basement of the library, in the puppet workshop, a story is being brought to life. It is the story of Lorraine: the Girl Who Sang the Storm Away. Let’s take a behind-the-scenes look at this brand new show by Wishing Chair Productions in collaboration with Old Crow Medicine Show front man Ketch Secor.

It’s no secret that libraries love reading! But last year, when Nashville Public Library launched Read to Rise, we wanted the entire city of Nashville to know how critical reading to children from birth is to a child’s success in school. Over the past year, we’ve spread the word to nearly 1,000 children who’ve registered for Read to Rise.  All told, those kids, parents, and caregivers have read together for more than 12,000 days! 

 

This blog post is part of a series examining classic children’s literature titles that have been deemed racist. Whether or not you choose to share classic books such as these with the children in your life, we encourage you to have open conversations with them on the topic of race.

The news of Toni Morrison's passing on August 5 was met with tributes and gratitude for a life well lived. While she is best known as the author of such novels as The Bluest Eye and Beloved, Morrison also wrote several books for children. It is not yet too early to introduce the children in your life to the work of this incomparable writer.

Do you have a picky young eater at home? You are not alone! Bread and Jam for Frances is the story of a winsome little badger who decides that only bread and jam will satisfy her appetite.

When we think of raising children to be the best that they can be, we think of teaching them every single thing we can stretch into our time. Oftentimes, when we talk about teaching them the things they need to know, we think of popular mainstream subjects such as math, reading, science, and history. But, we also need to be encouraging them to be what they want to be, growing up and finding what makes them happy too.

Writer Pat Mora is a poet, an educator, an activist, and a storyteller who often borrows from her Chicana background to tell stories of family, heritage, and the joy that reading can bring.

There are a lot of little ways you as a parent or caregiver can help prepare your child for Kindergarten. One of these ways is to cook with your child.

Born in rural Kenya and educated in the United States, Wangari Maathai was the first woman in East Africa to earn a doctoral degree, a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, and is the founder of the Green Belt Movement. Her incredible story is the subject of several picture book biographies for children.

The 28 days of February will never be enough to highlight the full depth and breadth of black history in the United States and around the world. Picture books are an ideal (and beautiful) way, however, to address the gaps in our knowledge of the contributions of African Americans to History writ large.

Using stories as the basis for coding games encourages children to explore early computer programming principles in a fun and interactive way.

Dear Parent,

Yes, you there. Reading this blog post on the library’s website. You are your child’s best teacher, and you’re doing a great job! Go ahead; give yourself a pat on the back or a self-five.

At Nashville Public Library, we’re in the business of unlocking potential.

We know success begins with access to quality education experiences.

The other day, my husband asked me what my favorite map projection was. I wasn’t sure how to answer him, so I started looking at different map books that the library owns, specifically in the children’s department, and I was amazed that I hadn’t paid more attention to this section before!

Are you clever? Shrewd? Canny? Or just plain brainy? How can you learn to use a wide variety of words like these? The answer is to read, read, read! The more you read, the better your vocabulary becomes. The more words a child reads, the more words she or he will learn and eventually use and understand.

Going on 60 years ago, Nashville followed suit with the landmark 1954 case Brown v. Board of Education, and began a "stair-step" plan to integrate public schools. But it wasn't without difficulty or a strong pushback.

Reading over the summer is essential to preventing "summer slide," or the loss of valuable academic skills gained during the school year. Although it may seem unfair to make kids read and do assignments over the summer, it is in fact exceedingly important. The key to getting a child to read during summer vacation, however, is to let them read what they want to read.

The one thing that I love to tell people about when they visit Metro Archives, is that we're more than simply a repository for city-wide governmental records. Yes, the records we have are archaic in nature and therefore highly informative and fascinating. But it's the photographs we also have from around the city that are most-telling about the city's past. In honor of National Photography month, check out some of the best photos from around our beloved city.

Though its expansive campus can be seen from the fast lanes of I-65 S just past Armory Lane, Father Ryan High School hasn't always called their Norwood Drive location home. On top of possessing photographs of the previous location's building and demolition in our clippings' file on the school, Metro Archives also holds several other treasures that easily tell stories about the school's past.  

Reading aloud to your young child is a great way to promote early literacy skills. But, did you know that it’s also an amazing opportunity to expose your little one to numbers and counting? In this article, we’ll talk about how children developmentally prepare to become mathematicians, and how you as a parent and/or caregiver can help facilitate their learning. One, two, three, let’s begin!

Textbooks are filled with the accomplishments of men throughout history but where are all the women? 

December 10th is Human Rights Day and the library has the information to help you answer "What is that?"

The educational system in Nashville has changed quite a bit over the years, but the core subjects have always remained at the forefront of teaching. But with a few changes, would you have excelled if you had been in school about 100 years ago?

We all want our children to learn good habits. But how do we teach them? Here are some simple, practical ideas to help you teach your toddler how to incorporate healthy, happy habits into their daily life!

In honor of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, and as a show of support for the families and friends of those killed in the Orlando Massacre, I've put together a list of books about LGBT people, important historical events, and books written to provide information and support to anyone who is questioning their sexual or gender identity. 

We've all seen some of the amazing puppet shows that Wishing Chair Productions has put on, and therefore, we've seen the diverse collection of puppets that they have. But there is one set of puppets that is no longer performed with but still represents the uniqueness of their collection - a very old set of Punch & Judy puppets. In honor of the Nashville International Puppet Festival coming up in June, this set of archaic dolls will be on display in Non-Fiction for your viewing pleasure.

I transferred to the Archives a month ago and I've been trying to learn all that I can about the Archive's collections. One of the coolest collections I recently stumbled upon is the small collection we have for the Nashville College for Young Ladies. In honor of Women's History Month, what better topic to discuss than women's education?

Minecraft, a computer game where everything is made of blocks, is sweeping the nation. Everywhere you look you can find children playing the game, reading the books, or begging adults to buy them Minecraft merchandise at the store. There are many benefits to playing the game, and they can all be summed up in five letters – STEAM.