Library Notes: Find books for back to school encouragement

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 22, 2021

By Stephanie Reister
Rowan Public Library

This school year is starting with continued extra challenges and unease. Reading books from Rowan Public Library can help all ages get back in the groove of school.

For little ones, sharing fun stories about going to school can help them visualize what to expect and giggle about it. In “The Color Monster Goes to School” by Anna Llenas, the title character feels nervous about his first day at school. He doesn’t know what school is, but guided by a friend, the Color Monster has lots of new adventures, makes new friends, and looks forward to the following day.

Humor can also work for older kids starting a new school year. “Justin Case: School, Drool, and Other Daily Disasters” by Rachel Vail has Justin starting off third grade discombobulated. He didn’t get the teacher he wanted, he’s not in the same class as his best friend, and his little sister is starting kindergarten at his school. Readers will relate to his nervousness and misadventures.

Teens can find confidence in “Learning How to Learn” by Barbara A. Oakley. It gives advice on the best strategies for learning, stopping procrastination, and overcoming poor memory. Oakley also encourages concentration with tips for giving the mind a break.

Another good one for teens and adults is “Mastering Memory: Techniques to Turn Your Brain from a Sieve to a Sponge” by Chester Santos, 2008 U.S. National Memory Champion. Santos lays out his techniques for improving memory by focusing on their practical value to career and personal life.

“The Yes Brain: How to Cultivate Courage, Curiosity, and Resilience in Your Child” by Daniel J. Siegel informs that the brain has two states of being. The reactive (no) state makes people rigid, self-conscious, and on high alert for rules and consequences. The receptive (yes) state enables curiosity along with creativity and fosters resilience.

Seigel says that teachers and parents tend to trigger the “no” state in children, which allows teachers and school systems to assess and manage them. He contends that parents can nurture a “yes brain” counterbalancing mindset in children to bring happiness and success.

Enjoy reading resources from RPL to start off the school year, and remember that there are plenty to help you throughout the year.

Stephanie Reister is children’s librarian at the Rowan Public Library.

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