January top 5 for under 5 – 2021

We invite you to check out this month’s Youth Services recommendations for activities, resources and new books in the library collection for children up to 5 years old and their families. 

Story time with Jeff

Local musician and actor Jeff Trainor may be a familiar name to the town’s under-5 set for his weekly story times, singing, ukulele-playing and sharing favorite picture books at jaZams Toy and Book Store in downtown Princeton. When the store was temporarily closed, Jeff began offering his story times on Instagram, where you can find him today. He often features guest readers, including professional actors, artists, musicians and kids; and he sometimes adds bonus videos of things that fascinate toddlers and preschoolers: airplanes flying overhead, construction work on a new building, garbage trucks, fire trucks, mixing ingredients in a bowl, fingers flying across piano keys … and more. We love Jeff and think you will, too.

Skating On the Square

Skating on the Square is back! Palmer Square in downtown Princeton is once again offering a new tradition that began last winter: skating on the square.  The eco-friendly outdoor skating rink is located on Hulfish Street behind the Nassau Inn until Feb. 28. Hours are Thursday-Friday, 4-7 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday, noon-3 p.m., and 4-7 p.m. Social distancing and masks are required. All ages are welcome and the younger you are, the less distance you have to fall while you learn to skate!

Eric Carle Museum Storytime

Soon after the pandemic began, the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art began offering online story times featuring favorite titles by Eric Carle and hosted by literacy educator David Feinstein. They have since expanded these weekly story times to include fun and interactive picture books by a variety of authors and illustrators. What makes these story times stand out is that they often include unique perspectives from the museum and prompts to share your own creativity inspired by the read alouds. Another bonus is the frequent tie-in to art activities from the “At Home Art Studio” playlist on their YouTube channel, led by the museum’s art educators. If your child responds well to online story times, these are worth checking out.

“Once Upon a Winter Day” by Liza Woodruff

This new picture book begs to be read and savored during the winter months. When a little boy’s mother is too busy to entertain him with stories, she encourages him to go outside and play in the snow. At first he is reluctant, but he soon discovers all the stories nature and his own imagination can tell on a winter’s day. Cozy up and read this book with your child this winter.

“Crow & Snow” by Robert Broder

Crow, a scarecrow, is lonely standing in the cornfield until the farmer’s children build a snowman next to him, starting a years-long friendship. This sweet story is an enduring testament to friendship (and makes you want to build a snowman!). You can also enjoy our Storytime Short featuring this new picture book premiering on the library’s YouTube channel on Jan. 5 and available on-demand thereafter.

Photo by Shelley Pauls on Unsplash

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