Invite your youngest patrons’ best stuffed friends — Teddy Bears or otherwise — to spend a night or weekend at the library.
The flyer can be very simple:
First, have the kids and their stuff friends attend a special storytime just for them. (Mo Willems’ Amanda and Her Alligator and Don Freeman’s Corduroy are good books for the event.) Tell the children that the stuffed friends are going to spend a fun-filled night at the library. You can even have them decorate name tags for their friends (better to keep track of who belongs to whom). [Here’s an example of the name tag: TeddyBearNames. Malverne had the kids write the stuffed friend’s name and decorate the blank side, and add their own name under “This Friend Belongs To.”]
Then, once the kids are gone, pose the stuffed friends in a variety of serious or goofy positions and take photos that you can show the kids when they come to pick up their friends the next day. Uniondale Library also had the stuffed friends “write” letters thanking their “owners” and telling them how much they enjoyed the evening. Malverne used a long holiday weekend for the event (more time to get photos taken).
–Michelle Minervini, Uniondale Public Library, and
Marie Drucker, Malverne Public Library
(with help from Jody Ruggiero, formerly of the Malverne Public Library)