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Back to the 70s for the Summer Library Program

Books and Reading, Summer Library Program

July 10, 2023

The Summer Library Program has been in full swing for nearly two months, and readers are enjoying all sorts of books. From graphic novels to picture books, stories both real and imagined… there is an endless number of selections to pick from.

But what if a child has already read the books that interest them and can’t seem to find anything new? Well, how about a classic story from your childhood? And if you are a Gen X’er like me, that would send you straight back to the 1970s.

Now you may be thinking, would a child relate to the same story that so captivated me when I was young? Of course! Many books remain timeless, even if certain things about them might confuse a youngster (what exactly is a typewriter again?).

While I don’t have children myself, I was thinking about my favorite childhood stories that I would love to introduce to the younger crowd. Here are a few of my favorites. If you’re over 45, which of these titles do you recognize?

The Shrinking of Treehorn by Florence Perry Heide: Treehorn is shrinking for reasons unknown. However, getting the adults to take the situation seriously is proving to be a challenge. The perfect book for the child that feels unnoticed.

Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik: Little Bear goes to the moon, has a birthday, and makes a wish all under his mother’s kind and patient eye. Shows the true power of imagination.

I Can Read with My Eyes Shut by Dr. Seuss: My favorite Seuss story when I was young because it was about my favorite pastime - reading.

Frog and Toad are Friends by Arnold Lobel: Calm Frog and quirky Toad are best friends who have adventures with buttons, stories, and a day at the swimming hole.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst: We all have days when nothing seems to go right. Alexander is having one of those days himself. Maybe life in Australia would be better.

Ira Sleeps Over by Bernard Waber: A fear that every child has is that their friends will think they are silly. When Ira is invited to sleep over at Reggie’s house, he debates whether to bring his beloved Teddy Bear along. Will Reggie laugh?

Miss Nelson is Missing by James Marshall: Miss Nelson’s students are taking advantage of her sweet nature. When Miss Nelson disappears and the horrible Miss Swamp shows up, the students realize just how good they had it. Where exactly did Miss Nelson go?

If you were a child in the Seventies, you may remember these gems, and now is the perfect time to introduce them to the younger set. So, if a child in your life needs to read something new, suggest something old. You never know what beloved book from your childhood could become their new favorite.

Pamela M.
Antioch Branch

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