Children's Theater @ Your Library

Taking kids to live theater is a wonderful experience. I speak very personally of this joy. I still remember the expression on my daughter's face when she saw, as a young child, her first Broadway in Tampa show at the Straz Center. It was truly a new world opening up to her. But her first visit to the Straz Center was NOT her first introduction to live theater. 

We are now season ticket holders to the Straz Center and I alternate between taking the #TampaTrio. Of course, one upcoming show that they MUST see will be Hamilton. We're all huge fans, and thankfully I've been training my kids proper theater etiquette for over 10 years, so I know they will be ready to be in The Room Where It Happens

Did you know that many public libraries offer live theater productions for kids and their families. It's true. In Tampa we have a partnership with Creative Arts Theater and throughout the year they host theater productions throughout the area. And guess what...these are all FREE for you to attend. What better way to introduce your children to live theater than in a friendly, informal setting. It's in settings like this that you can teach them how to sit and listen listen and follow proper theater etiquette. As they learn and grow, you can begin to take them to kid friendly shows at the Straz Center.

Right now many Tampa libraries are hosting Creative Arts Theater and their production of The Secret Garden.

This literary classic comes to life through the magic of colorful design, music, and live actors! For those of you who aren't familiar with The Secret Garden, in a nutshell....when an orphan is sent to live with an uncle she’s never met, she discovers a mysterious, walled-off garden. To her surprise, as the garden begins to bloom, so does she. For ages 5 and up.
While it is recommended for ages 5 and up, I highly encourage all of you to bring your younger children. If they get fussy, bored, etc., you can simply leave the room. You aren't out any money (because it was FREE) and you and your child still get the experience of live theater. Click HERE to view the upcoming dates and locations of this production. 
Have your children experienced live theater?



Horror Books for Teens

Earlier this week I shared some ghost stories for kids. Today I'm sharing HORROR BOOKS FOR TEENS!! This list is YA horror that are all set in small towns. Right now Ella and Ronin are totally obsessed with the Walking Dead series. And some of the Walking Dead takes place in small towns, but for the most part, Rick and his crew are on the move so I didn't include any of the WD series in this list. BUT....just in case you are interested. Did you know that there are Walking Dead stand alone novels in addition to the graphic novels? I have read two of them: The Rise of the Governor and The Road to Woodbury. They were both very good and gave a LOT of insight into the character of The Governor.

There is just one more Zombie-ish book I want to share with you. It's called The Girl With All the Gifts and it's an amazing book. And it will make you question what really makes us human.

So...what about the books on this list? What do you think you or your teen will likely read this Halloween season?



Ghost Stories for Kids

Can you believe that October is right around the corner? My kids have been busy trying to figure out what they'd like to dress up as this year. Zombies seem to be leading the list right now. But besides dressing up, this is a great time to introduce your kids to some ghost stories!

The #TamapTrio love a good ghost story. Listed below are some great ghost stories for the independent readers in your life! You could also do these as a read-aloud for younger kids. You may want to read the books beforehand to make sure that they are not too scary for little ones. Of this books on this list, my kids LOVED The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier. In fact, if you scroll to the bottom of the post you can see Haley and Ella meeting Jonathan at the ALA Annual Conference last summer. The girls absolutely loved his book Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes. The Night Gardener, while more "scary" than Peter Nibmle, is equally fantastic and showcases the brilliance of the author. The Night Gardener is a Victorian ghost story about two abandoned Irish siblings who travel to work as servants at a creepy, crumbling English manor house. But the house and its family are not quite what they seem. Soon the children are confronted by a mysterious spectre and an ancient curse that threatens their very lives. More than just a spooky tale, it’s also a moral fable about human greed and the power of storytelling. And I don't know about you, but I'll take any opportunity to teach my children about morals and values. 

Have you or your children read of these books? Do any titles/covers look interesting to you??

 Haley & Jonathan at ALA 2016

Ella and Jonathan at ALA 2016