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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

July 23, 2015
On Kindness
"Aunt Margaret lives WHERE?"
The Festival of the Book Returns...

Good Reads for Parents and Young Adults

Two for the Kids
"Aunt Margaret lives WHERE?"
Click to view our Business Directory
  On Kindness

(AAA July 2015) Kindness_twochildren.jpg"Children begin their lives "naturally" kind, and ... something happens to this kindness as they grow up in contemporary society."Adam Phillips and Barbara Taylor, authors of On Kindness

It's true.  We grow up experiencing both kindness and unkindness.  I don't know the percentage of humans who live by codes of kindness versus codes of hatred, but I meet many more people who value kindness than meanness, people who strive to think, speak and act kindly. 

(AAA July 2015) Kindness_policeman.jpgKindness begins, is modeled and nurtured in our families.  As our children venture into the community beyond family, they meet teachers and other adults who also nurture this quality.  In both environments children will experience us adults naturally faltering as models of kindness.  As our children gain a greater  knowledge of our history, culture and contemporary events locally, nationally and globally, we continue to imbue them with the character to live by a code of kindness and strength in the face of hatred. 

A powerful tool in our efforts to model and guide them in this path is literature.  Check out the inspiring books and workshops the founders of LitWits Workshops LLC are offering to parents and teachers.   Their approach is available to individuals and schools. 

(AAA July 2015) Book_OnKindness.jpgI'm going to read this book, On Kindness, because if there's a science to increasing kindness, that's worth understanding.  Meanwhile, I'll keep working on my own kindness quotient.  I like the deep sense of well being that comes from being kind.  Let's help our children experience this expansive feeling over and over. 

Camp Options: A-Z Camps  ~  Camps on the Calendar  ~  Camp Guide Newsletter.

Thank you for sending many new families our way. Please, drop us a line anytime and recommend us to a friend

Have a rewarding weekend with the family, Parmalee

Parenting Support ~ Parks ~ Museums The Weekend

  "Aunt Margaret lives WHERE?"

(AAA July 2015) LitWits_flying-carpet-.jpgYour GPS is set, the kids are buckled in, you've got a couple of sacks of munchies within reach and some plastic bags tucked in the glove compartment "just in case." Everybody's got their favorite pillow and a good book.

Seems like you've thought of everything! Except  - wait a minute, what about those Sensory Immersion Literature Destination Enhancers?

Did you pack those?

Hmmm... Read more by Jenny & Becky of LitWits Workshop >>>>>

  The Festival of the Book Returns...

FESTIVAL OF THE BOOK CELEBRATES CONCLUSION OF SANTA CRUZ PUBLIC LIBRARY SYSTEM'S SUMMER READING PROGRAM
Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries
Kids and Families are Invited to the Festival of the Books at Harvey West Park
Date: Sunday, 7/26 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm
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The Santa Cruz Public Library System (SCPL), a network of 10 neighborhood library branches throughout Santa Cruz County, invites families to celebrate children's literacy. All ages are welcome to attend.

There will be food, crafts, face painting and Watsonville Taiko drumming group will perform at 3 p.m. Kids who complete the Summer Reading Program with at least 1 Book Buck receive a free hot dog lunch. Also, children can read to a Tales to Tails therapy dog and there will be a kids-only book sale.

"The Festival of the Book is a fun way to celebrate the kids who dedicated a portion of their summer to reading," said Janis O'Driscoll, interim director of the Santa Cruz Public Library System. "We enjoy marking the end of summer with this happy occasion."

(AAA July 2015) LibraryRhythmGirlDrum.jpgThe Summer Reading Program began June 1 and is open to all children ages 0-18. This year's theme is "Read to the Rhythm". Kids are encouraged to read books of their choosing - or be read to, in the case of infants and toddlers. Program participants earn "Book Bucks" for each hour of reading (or listening) logged that can be redeemed at local businesses or traded in for a chance at raffle prizes.

The tally won't be complete until after the Festival of the Book - the end of the Summer Reading Program - but 3,339 children had signed up for the program as of Sunday, July 19. The kids had already earned nearly $10,000 in Book Bucks (almost $20 per child), which can be redeemed for goods and services local businesses have donated as incentives to support reading and learning in Santa Cruz County.

The Festival of the Book is free to attend. Harvey West Park is located at 326 Evergreen St., Santa Cruz. People can also connect with the event on Facebook.

Location: Harvey West Park, 326 Evergreen St, Santa Cruz Map  website Santa Cruz

 

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  Good Reads for Parents and Young Adults

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Thanks to Kirkus for the brief pithy descriptions.  Expanded descriptions are on their website. 

THE OREGON TRAIL, A New American Journey by Rinker Buck

"A book with a heart as big as the country it crosses; A crazy whim of a trip on a covered wagon turns into an inspired exploration of American identity."

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BEYOND WORDS, by Carl Safina

"A profound, scientifically based appeal for recognition of the kinship of all living things. Award-winning ecologist Safinadisputes the dogma among scientists that forbids speculations about the "the inner lives of animals."

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KITCHENS OF THE GREAT MIDWEST, by J. Ryan Stradal

"Food and family intertwine in this promising debut that features triumph, heartbreak, and even recipes. A young girl navigates a tumultuous childhood to become one of the top chefs in the country in this delicious debut from Stradal."

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GO SET A WATCHMAN, by Harper Lee

"The long-awaited, much-discussed sequel that might have been a prequel-and that makes tolerably good company for its classic predecessor. It's not To Kill a Mockingbird, and it too often reads like a first draft, but Lee's story nonetheless has weight and gravity."

 

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  Two for the Kids

(AAA July 2015) Book_IvyandBean.jpgIVY AND BEAN, from the "Ivy + Bean" series, volume 1, by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, Age Range: 6 - 10

"A charismatic duo makes their debut in this new chapter-book series. Barrows provides a fresh take on the standard odd-couple tale of friendship, with a caveat to readers of not judging a book by its cover-or the new girl by her seemingly goody image. Bean, an energetic girl with an inclination for mischief, just doesn't see the appeal of her new neighbor Ivy, whom her mother extols as such a "nice girl," which Bean readily translates to mean dull.

However, when she needs to escape the wrath of her bossy sister Nancy, Bean discovers a whole new dimension to the quiet girl next door. Together Ivy and Bean concoct a plan to cast Ivy's fledgling dancing spell on Nancy, with unexpected and hilarious results. With a hearty helping of younger sibling angst, a sprinkling of spells and potions and a dash of nosy neighbors, Barrows has the perfect recipe for solidifying a newfound friendship. Blackall's saucy illustrations detailing the girls' hijinks and their calamitous outcomes are liberally featured throughout the text. Readers are bound to embrace this spunky twosome and eagerly anticipate their continuing tales of mischief and mayhem." Review by Kirkus

(AAA July 2015) Book_RoughingItOntheOregonTrail.jpgROUGHING IT ON THE OREGON TRAIL, by Diane Stanley, illustrated by Holly Berry  Age Range: 6 - 10

"Mom and Dad are off to Paris, but Grandma has a better trip in mind for Liz and Lenny. All three dress in clothes from the attic; then Grandma puts on her magic hat and takes the kids and the dog, Moose, back in time to 1843. There they join their ancestors traveling west in a covered wagon on the Oregon Trail. Stanley (A Time Apart, 1999, etc.) gives a humorous and historically accurate account, with tidbits about cooking on the trail, encounters with Native Americans, and hunting for berries and wild onions in the meadows near the Bear River.

Even history buffs will find something new in this description; for example, the author describes removing the wheels from covered wagons, covering the wagon frames with buffalo hides rubbed with tallow and ashes, and floating the wagons across the river. The travelers and their dogs add their own quips and comments on the journey in conversation balloons. Berry (Market Day, 1996, etc.) provides appealing illustrations, rich in detail. The front endpapers show a map of the Oregon Trail in 1843 while the back endpapers show a map of the Oregon Trail today. An author's note explains that it stretches 2,170 miles and was traveled by over 400,000 settlers between 1840 and 1880. Young readers who have discovered The Magic School Bus will relish this adventure of "The Time-Traveling Twins," and look forward to further adventures." Review by Kirkus

 

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July

in the Parks

A-Z Camps

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The LitWits experience of PINOCCHIO
LitWits Workshops
 
We bring great books to life! PINOCCHIO by Carlo Collodi (1863) - not at all Walt Disney's puppet!

Aug 13-Aug 14 9am to 4pm
Ages 7-12

Santa Cruz 
(831) 247-0593

view all details   

 

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Guitar &

African Drumming

Small Group Lessons

with Ron Dunn

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Weekly July 6 - Aug. 12

Enter a contest at the Santa Cruz County Fair! 

Show off your best! 

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Online Entry Deadline August 22,  11:59pm, due on August 30 by 5pm

Entries and entry forms

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Celebrate Books!
click to view website
  Celebrate Books!
Date:
view all details >>
     
Celebrate Books!
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  Celebrate Books!
Date:
view all details >>
     
Wharf to Wharf
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  Wharf to Wharf
Wharf to Wharf
Date: 07/17/2017 at 8:30am
Details: A scenic six-mile race with 35 or more live bands and throngs of festive spectators along the route. The coveted Wharf to Wharf
City: Santa Cruz to Capitola view all details >>
     
Day out with Thomas
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  Day out with Thomas
Roaring Camp Railroads
Date: Every day (Jul 29-Aug 7)
Ages: All
Details: Thomas the Tank wants you to come visit!
City: Felton view all details >>
     
First Friday Featuring Danny Fernandez
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  First Friday Featuring Danny Fernandez
Palace Art & Office Supply
Date: 08/06/2016 from 11:00am to 6:00pm
Details: Meet Danny Fernandez, local artist, at Palace's First Friday!
City: Capitola Phone: (831) 464-2700 view all details >>
     
Homework Help
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  Homework Help
Library Scotts Valley
Date: Every Tues (Jan 12-Jan 12) from 3:00pm to 5:00pm
Details: Homework Help @ Scotts Valley (3:00 PM-5:00 PM) Free homework assistance
City: Scotts Valley Phone: 831-427-7712 view all details >>
     
Schoolhouse Rock Live!
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  Schoolhouse Rock Live!
Cabrillo Theater
Date: Every day (Jul 10-Aug 8)
Details: A pop culture phenomenon comes to the musical stage in Schoolhouse Rock Live!
City: Aptos Phone: (831) 479-6154 view all details >>
     
Tales of the Basin-A Storytelling Weekend Event
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  Tales of the Basin-A Storytelling Weekend Event
State Park Big Basin
Date: Every day (Jul 28-Jul 30)
Details: The oral storytelling tradition comes to life with the ancient redwood forest as a backdrop.
City: Boulder Creek Phone: (831) 338-8883 view all details >>
     
Moss LandinG Antique Street Fair
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  Moss LandinG Antique Street Fair
Moss Landing Chamber of Commerce
Date: 07/26/2015
Details: You can browse hundreds of  booths and shops for antiques and
City: Moss Landing Phone: 831-633-4507 view all details >>
     
The Gilroy Garlic Festival
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  The Gilroy Garlic Festival
Gilroy Garlic Festival
Date: Every day (Jul 28-Jul 30)
Ages: All
Details: "Ultimate Summer Food Fair"; three d9ys of incredible food, beverages, arts & crafts, live entertainment and
Special Instructions: Santa Teresa Blvd & Club Dr
City: Gilroy Phone: 408-846-6886 view all details >>
     
Fiddler on the Roof
click to view website
  Fiddler on the Roof
Cabrillo Theater
Date: Every day (Jul 21-Aug 14)
Details: A rousing performance of a classic!
City: Aptos Phone: (831) 479-6154 view all details >>
     
Celebrate Books!
click to view website
  Celebrate Books!
Date:
view all details >>
     
     
  "Aunt Margaret lives WHERE?"

(AAA July 2015) LitWits_flying-carpet-.jpgYour GPS is set, the kids are buckled in, you've got a couple of sacks of munchies within reach and some plastic bags tucked in the glove compartment "just in case." Everybody's got their favorite pillow and a good book.

Seems like you've thought of everything! Except  - wait a minute, what about those Sensory Immersion Literature Destination Enhancers?

Did you pack those?

Hmmm.

Here's the thing - every time we travel we are immersing ourselves in the sights and sounds and smells of a unique setting. We can't help it; that's how life works. The extra magic happens when we find a great book that brings both the book and the place to life through a story.  It doesn't  even have to be a true story - Sherlock Holmes does as much for Baker Street as Laura Ingalls does for the American Midwest, regardless of whether he actually ever left a fingerprint there.

(AAA July 2015) LitWits_Robinson-Crusoe.jpgHow about bringing along a tale or two that has to do with the place you'll be visiting? Depending on your child's interests, you might want a book that focuses on the wildlife you'll be seeing, the history of the setting, or an industry the town is known for. Who knows what intriguing tales could be unearthed on the way to your great aunt's house - maybe there are things about her town she doesn't even know! Won't your child have fun telling her about the pioneers who first settled there or the famous inventor who attended the local high school?

For help in the quest we love www.bookssetin.com, which lets you search for books by their setting, and even allows you to sort out the children's lit category with the "Advanced Search" option. Also check the website of the town you'll be visiting, or use Google to find interesting leads. Once you've chosen a book, if you find your library has a recorded version that the whole family can listen to en route, even better.

Here are a couple of other ideas for fun things to add to your Sensory Immersion Literature Destination Enhancers:

Gather a relevant prop or two, LitWits style, to pack with the book. It doesn't take much, really! Your kids will be all the more intrigued with the book you've chosen if it comes with some tangible, sensory pieces right out of its pages.  If you're headed for the Catskills and your child is reading My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, tuck a little pocket compass in his or her pack.

Look for opportunities to taste the story, once you get there.  If you're heading through Southern California and your child is reading Any Small Goodness: A Novel of the Barrio by Tony Johnston, by all means, stop for tacos!  If you're in New England reading Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham, best pick up some beef jerky to ease the journey. While you're at it, stave off scurvy with a few limes. You get the point.

The key is to find a great book that connects you and your kids to the place you are headed or the journey you'll take to get there. Your trip, and your kids' love of reading and learning, will be all the richer because of it. That's the beauty of sensory immersion, LitWits style!

Please help yourself to our FREE teacher and student resources, and check out our LitWits Kits!

Happy reading...

Jenny & Becky

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