How to Camp . . . with Kids

Child putting up a tent

When I was a kid, summer was all about road trips and camping with our aunts, uncles and cousins. All the kids loved the fact that we could run around and get as dirty as we wanted — and sleeping under the stars was the best. When I became a mom, I couldn't wait to […]

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Kate Hannigan Q & A

The Detectives Assistant book cover

Get to know April's Author of the Month, Kate Hannigan, as she talks about the inspiration behind her latest book, The Detective's Assistant, how she got her start in writing and her love of Chicago history.   Where did you get your idea for this book? I stumbled across a single sentence about Kate Warne while […]

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Author of the Month Kate Hannigan

Author Kate Hannigan

Meet the world's first female detective, Kate Warne, and her spunky niece, Nell, in Kate Hannigan's latest novel The Detective's Assistant. On the eve of the Civil War, the Pinkerton Detective Agency hired the first female detective, Kate Warne. A master of disguise, Kate went on to solve several mysteries and thwart an assassination attempt […]

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Springtime in the City

Children's Services Spring Learning Challenge: Springtime in the City

We're challenging the kids of Chicago to find Springtime in the City from April 1 to April 17. Play an outdoor game, investigate nature in your neighborhood or discover why we have seasons. To complete the challenge: Read (book, magazine or website) for 20 minutes a day for five days of spring break Discover new information by […]

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The Joy of Music Instruction

clarinet and trumpet with sheet music

The school year started off with a bang in my house—or should I say a high-pitched SQUEAK! It seems that many schools think the fourth grade is an excellent year to teach kids to play an instrument. Not only did my son get introduced to band instruments during the first few weeks of school, but only two […]

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Ilene Cooper Q & A

U.S. Capital Building

Celebrate Women's History Month and get to know March's Author of the Month, Ilene Cooper, as she talks about the inspiration behind her latest book, A Woman in the House (and Senate), how she got her start in writing and her love of books. Where did you get your idea for this book? I have always been […]

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Author of the Month Ilene Cooper

Photo of author Ilene Cooper

Can you guess how many women were members of Congress for the first 128 years the United States was a country? Not one! It was not until 1917 that a woman was elected to the House of Representatives. Do you know how many serve today? A Woman in the House (and Senate), the latest from […]

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Superhero Series Inspire Love of Reading

Child reading book

My son was a late bloomer when it came to reading on his own. He loved books, but only if Mom read to him. Then his after-school teacher gave him a book that changed our lives forever! The Adventures Of Captain Underpants awoke something in my son that no other book could—his love of reading. It […]

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Newbery, Caldecott, Other Kids Book Awards Announced

The Adventures of Beekle book cover

The American Library Association on Monday announced its picks for the very best books published for kids in the last year. Kids, parents, teachers and librarians from across the globe try to guess which books will be picked from among the thousands published each year and hope against hope that their favorite gets picked. We've compiled the […]

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Author of the Month Kwame Alexander

Author Kwame Alexander and his novel The Crossover

Identical twins Josh and Jordan couldn’t be more different – even on the basketball court where they both shine thanks to their dad’s pro ball experience – but their bond of brotherhood has always been strong. When a new beauty starts school, both boys fall head over heels, but she's only got eyes for one. […]

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