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Event Highlights

Anna, Kids & Families Outreach


Did you know singing with your child is one way to prepare your child to read? How does singing help with reading?

- Songs introduce new words. Song lyrics often use different vocabulary than our everyday spoken language.

-Also, the different musical notes couple with the different syllables of a word. Singing and listening to you sing will help your child understand the structure and sounds of a word.

-Reading books that can be sung is a great way to show children that words are everywhere, even in songs. Words are not just in books! 

Children learn about the world around them when you talk to them. Honestly, I run out of things to talk about with my three year old and five year old. So when I can't think of a thing to say to my boys, I sing. I don't have a great singing voice, but my children don't care! Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy has some fantastic rhyming and singing videos in a few different languages. I turn to these videos when I need new songs to sing to my boys or in my Storytimes. If you haven't visited the library for a Storytime, you should come! We sing, dance, read picture books, and sometimes we do a craft. We offer bilingual Storytimes too! Spanish and English storytimes at the Belmar and Wheat Ridge Libraries and American Sign Language and English Storytimes at the Belmar Library. 

 Check out some of these music and book suggestions. 

The Wheels on the Bus

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Fun Music

Stinky Cake

Latin Playground by Putumayo

Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy Video "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush"



Photo Credit: Henti Smith



It’s not something any of us like to talk about, but if you ask around, most of have in one way or another been impacted by suicide.

In Colorado, for young people between the ages of 10 and 19, suicide is the second leading cause of death. There are many effective suicide prevention programs in our community that can help. The Second Wind Fund helps in a different way by connecting young people at risk of suicide with licensed therapists to help them discover hope and healing in their lives. You can learn more about warning signs and risk factors, as well as the Second Wind Fund at a presentation on Monday, September 21, 6:30 p.m. at the Columbine Library.

Presented by Second Wind Fund.

6:30 p.m. Monday, September 21  


Did you know that fingerspelling has a strong correlation to reading? Fingerspelling is using your hands to represent letters or numbers. Join us and gain an understanding of the relationship between fingerspelling and reading in promoting literacy. Researchers Nancy Bridenbaugh and Rachel Bol will share findings and tips on incorporating fingerspelling in the daily activities of children both deaf and hard of hearing.  

Fingerspelling: A Pathway to Reading
6 p.m. Thursday, October 1
Belmar Library

The Center on Literacy and Deafness is funded by a grant from the US Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences (Award #R24C120001).


It’s time to get on your feet and start moving! Did you know that one of the best ways to help prepare young children to read is through movement and play?

Join Jefferson County Public Library for a special program featuring renowned author and physical activity specialist, Rae Pica, on October 14.  6:30 p.m. and learn what you can do as a parent, family member, teacher, caregiver or child care provider to make moving and playing part of your reading activities.

This event is designed to help us better understand the relationship between physical activity and the brain; the value of play; and how to use movement, play and active learning to nurture a child’s ability to learn to read and think.

Rae’s lively and informative workshops and expertise have been shared with groups such as the Sesame Street Research Department, the Head Start Bureau, Centers for Disease Control, the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, Nickelodeon’s Blue’s Clues, Gymboree, and state health departments throughout the country. She also served on the task force of the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) that created national guidelines for early childhood physical activity.

Rae is the author of 17 books, including Experiences in Movement, Great Games for Young Children, Jump into Literacy, and A Running Start: How Play, Physical Activity, and Free Time Create a Successful Child.

6:30 p.m. Wednesday, October 14
Lakewood Cultural Center
470 South Allison Parkway
Lakewood, Colorado

The event is free but we encourage you to reserve your seat now!


About the author: 

Rae Pica has been an education consultant, specializing in the development and education of the whole child, active learning, and developmentally appropriate practice, since 1980. She is the author of 19 books, including the award-winning Great Games for Young Children and Jump into Literacy, and her most recent, What If Everybody Understood Child Development? Rae is known for her lively and informative presentations and has shared her expertise with such groups as the Sesame Street Research Department, the Head Start Bureau, the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, Nickelodeon’s Blue’s Clues, and Gymboree. Rae also served on the task force of the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) that created national guidelines for early childhood physical activity, blogs for Huffington Post, and is cofounder of BAM Radio Network, the world’s largest online education radio network, where she hosts Studentcentricity, interviewing experts in education, child development, play research, the neurosciences, and more.


Laura Pritchett, author of Hell’s Bottom, Colorado, will be making visiting Wheat Ridge Library on Thursday, September 17 at 9 a.m.

The book was chosen as part of Wheat Ridge Reads,  a citywide book club, sponsored by the Wheat Ridge Cultural Commission. Presented annually, Wheat Ridge Reads is designed to promote literacy and a shared reading experience throughout the city.

Hell’s Bottom, Colorado is a collection of short, linked stories. Winner of the Milkweed National Fiction Prize and the PEN USA Award for Fiction, Hell's Bottom, Colorado, focuses on one extended ranching family in Colorado, unfolding the stories of various family members with warmth and gritty reality. On Hell's Bottom Ranch, a section of land below the Front Range, there’s Renny, a women who prefers “a little Hell swirled with her Heaven,” and her husband, Ben, who’s “gotten used to smoothing over Renny’s excesses.” A day of haying turns violent in “A New Name Each Day.” In “Rattlesnake Fire,” Ben and his estranged sister must decide whether to put aside their differences to save families trapped by a forest fire. There is a daughter who plays it too safe and a daughter plagued by only "half-wanting" what life has to offer. In Pritchett’s masterful hands, the western landscape becomes a zone of familial crisis and, sometimes, transcendence. 

Raised on a Colorado ranch, Pritchett is the author/editor of seven books, a writing coach, and an activist. Still a Colorado resident, she is on the faculty at Lighthouse Writers Workshop in Denver, and provides one-on-one coaching as well as workshops on a variety of writing topics. She has published more than 100 essays and short stories in magazines (including O Magazine, High Country News, and 5280). She holds a PhD from Purdue University.

9 a.m., Thursday, September 17
Wheat Ridge Library

6 p.m. Wednesday, September 16
Clancy's Irish Pub
7000 W 38th Avenue

Sponsored by the Wheat Ridge Reads and Wheat Ridge Cultural Commission.


Tiny Houses are catching big attention in Colorado. Learn about the tiny house movement from an organization dedicated to smaller housing alternatives. Barbara Mariner, Live Simply Colorado, discusses what it takes to live tiny, including resources, costs, building know-how, money, land and legal issues.

6:30 p.m. Tuesday, September 15

2 p.m. Saturday, September 19

Wheat Ridge
6 p.m. Thursday, September 24

2:30 p.m. Saturday, September 26

6:30 p.m. Tuesday, September 29

2 p.m. Saturday, October 3



Everybody loves a tea party! We invite kids who are five and older to bring their favorite grownup to an afternoon tea at the Wheat Ridge Library.

You don’t have to be royalty to enjoy a good tea party. Tea parties can be a fun way to introduce your children to table etiquette. Here are a few tea party “rules” I found in some of our children’s books.

  1. Always try to be clean and neat.
  2. Try to be fancy. A little dress up doesn’t hurt anyone.
  3. Try to eat daintily.
  4. Manners matter.

Whether you’re like Fancy Nancy or more like Tea Rex, tea parties can be a lot of fun. And, here’s a few reading suggestions for you to check out before, or after, your tea party.

4 p.m. Thursday, September 10
Wheat Ridge

Registration is required and is now open. Register.  






Author Mary Stobie will visit with Wheat Ridge Library’s Thursday Morning Book Group on Thursday, August 20, 9 a.m. She’ll be discussing her book, You Fall Off, You Get Back On. The event is open to all.

Stobie is a Rocky Mountain writer and terms her book a “patchwork memoir.” This fun-filled book is part Erma Bombeck and part Annie Oakley as Stobie recounts her experiences as a young rodeo champion and Hollywood ingénue.

As a starlet she had surprising encounters with Hollywood A-listers like Warren Beatty, George C. Scott, and Clint Eastwood before she returned to family life on the Colorado range and settled into the writing.

Join us for this entertaining discussion and you’ll discover that Mary Stobie is anything but “settled.”  Even in suburbia, life continues to be an adventure (or misadventure) for Stobie who finds every escapade a great excuse for a joke or life lesson.

You Fall Off, You Get Back On is a reading treat for anyone who appreciates the Rocky Mountains, enjoys an honest and loving life story well-told, and loves a good laugh.

9 a.m. Thursday, August 20
Wheat Ridge

Sandi, Arvada Library

Rick Riordan's new series Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard kicks off on October 6th with the release of Sword of Summer.  We have Norse mythology to thank for heroes like Thor, and tricksters like Loki. Add Magnus Chase, teen demigod from Boston, and get ready for doomsday.

Place your hold on Sword of Summer now!   

While you're waiting, get your library card ready, and learn more about Norse mythology with the Gods, Goddesses and Mythology database.

 Image credit: Gods, Goddesses and Mythology, Cavendish Digital


Wrap up your summer reading accomplishments at our celebrity-style “It’s a Wrap!” party.

12–4 p.m. Sunday, August 23
Jefferson County Fairgrounds 
15200 W 6th Ave Frontage Rd., Golden 

This countywide event is the perfect way to wrap up your summer before school activities get too crazy! We’ll have fun activities for all ages, including:

  • Bouncy Castles
  • Top Hogs
  • Folkloric Dancers
  • Live Music
  • Big Trucks
  • Race Cars
  • Bookmobile
  • Mobile Computer Lab
  • Face Painter
  • Side Walk Chalk Art
  • Vendor Booths
  • Kids Crafts
  • Concessions
  • Giant Board Games
  • Book Swap
  • Community Art Project

...And more! Bring a gently used book or two and swap it for another! No need to RSVP, just bring yourself, your smiles, and help us celebrate an incredible summer of reading!