Tag Archives: picture books

Picture book topics at the library


Just where are the dinosaur picture books? Rawr.

You’re a busy and tired parent, and all you want is to a) find the picture books on dinosaurs for your child who is currently obsessed with dinosaurs, and to b) get out of the library as quickly as possible because you have a zillion other things to do today.

So where do you find the dinosaur picture books?

In a normal library, you would have to do a catalog search on “dinosaurs,” or ask a librarian, or go through the stacks of picture books and flip through them trying to find anything with a dinosaur on it.

But we’re not a normal library. Allow us to introduce “Picture Book Topics”.

“Picture Book Topics” are picture books grouped by a variety of topics:

  • Dinosaurs
  • Construction
  • Transportation
  • ABC & 123 (alphabet books and number books, but also about colors and shapes)
  • Toddler (books that are especially good for one and two year olds)
  • Pink (princesses and all things pink)

These books have green labels and are available in the far corner of the Children’s Room by the door to the Oak Room.

Questions? Contact Youth Services Librarian Steven Engelfried at 503-570-1592 or engelfried@wilsonvillelibrary.org.

“Picture Books No Longer a Staple for Children” – really?

A recent New York Times article states that picture books are no longer a staple for children because parents are pushing their children to read chapter books instead.

Steven Engelfried

Steven Engelfried, Youth Services Librarian

Our Youth Services Librarian Steven Engelfried gives his take on the matter:

“It’s a shame the article doesn’t mention that the parents who are skipping over picture books to get their children into Harvard are pretty much wrong, since research about reading and brain development shows that sharing picture books has huge positive impacts on reading success at kindergarten which typically carries through to future grades too.  Or that there’s much more going on when you share a picture book than ‘analog thinking’ and that the only example of a ‘sophisticated picture book’ offered has ‘Swiftian satire.

“The good news is we’re doing tons here at the Library to promote picture books and early literacy.  Last week, for example, we had 419 people at 7 Storytimes.  That’s a lot of people getting pretty excited about picture books.  And checking them out:  Library Director Pat Duke shared some hourly circulation stats that showed how Storytime attendance relates directly to book use.  The checkouts of children’s materials spike exactly around Storytime hours.  Over 3 weeks, for example, we checked out over 140 children’s books between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays . . . just after our biggest Storytimes.  Every other hour averages less than 70 (except Tuesday night after Storytime:  78). 

“Also, although it’s disturbing that publishers are publishing less new stuff and bookstores are displaying fewer picture books, in a way that makes what we do at the library even more valuable, since we’re the place you can go to get the widest variety of choices.”

-Steven Engelfried, Youth Services Librarian

What do you think? Are picture books still important for children? Should kids be encouraged to read at a higher level sooner? Did you read picture books as a kid, or read them to your own children? What are your favorite picture books?

 Let us know in the comments!