Sunday, February 28, 2010

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

A special birthday party will be held from 10:30 to 12:00, this Saturday, March 6th in the lower level of the library. It is a party to celebrate the contribution to children's literature by Theodor Seuss Geisel or as we all know him, Dr. Seuss.

Geisel was born in 1904. In 1927 he began his career submitting cartoons and humorous stories for magazines. He wrote To Think that I Saw It on Mulberry Street while on a trip in 1937. The book was rejected by over two dozen publishers, but finally published with some success in 1938.

In 1954, Life magazine published a story about children having trouble learning to read. They stated that children's books were boring. Houghton Mifflin chose a list of 400 words, deemed important for children to know. Geisel was asked to whittle it down to 250 words. Out of that, grew a book with only 225 different words: The Cat in the Hat. Later, on a bet, Geisel wrote Green Eggs and Ham, a book of only 50 different words!

He wrote under two pen names. Dr. Seuss is the name he used for books that he both wrote and illustrated. Theo. LeSieg (Geisel spelled backwards) was the name he used for books he wrote that were illustrated by others.

Some of my favorite Geisel's books, star lead characters who demonstrate greatness by caring for the environment (The Lorax), by caring for others (Horton Hears a Who) and by giving children a beginning sense of democracy and equality (Yertle the Turtle).

I hope children will come with their favorite grown-up. Come to have birthday cake and fun with playdough, green shaving cream, colors, stickers, books, and a fishing game. Using the words of the Cat--who will also be in attendance-- “If you come, we’ll have fun. We’ll have fun that is funny."

We hope you will bring your child. I will be there along with many of my preschool friends. The Friends of the Library bookstore will be open during the party and every child who comes will receive a ticket for a free children's book to take home.

Toad House Publishing

Twinkletime Rhymes to Print

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Facts about Cavities

Today I would like to share with you some interesting facts about cavities in teeth of young children.

 Cavities before the age of 6 is the single most chronic disease of childhood.
 It is five to eight times more common than asthma.
 50% of children have a cavity by 1st grade.

Parents of children who have cavities in their baby teeth say, “Why should we be concerned about this? They will be losing their baby teeth.” Here are the reasons why we must be concerned and proactive with baby’s oral health:

 Cavities cause pain and infection and can cause a serious condition called “failure to thrive.”
 Cavities in baby teeth dramatically increase the risk of cavities in permanent teeth because the bacteria that cause cavities are present in the mouth.
 If cavities go untreated, children will develop poor eating habits, speech problems, and social problems.

I would like to share two activities occurring this Friday. First, my guest on WLDY’s Talkline program at 8:30 will be one of our local dentists, Dr. Stephen Reisner. If you have questions for Dr. Reisner, I hope you will call in during the show. Second, Friday evening at 6:30, Ken Parejko will present information and slides from his book on monarch butterflies. I know budding scientists in upper elementary and beyond will enjoy this program free of charge, sponsored by the Friends of the Library.

In closing, I would like to share another fun activity from the Internet. It is the story of a child's visit to the dentist. The animation allows your child to click on objects in the story to learn more about the dental office. You can find the story at

Sunday, February 14, 2010

This week we will go on to talk about the earliest beginnings of healthy teeth in children. Can you predict what I will say next? Healthy baby teeth begin even before you are pregnant. Mothers-to-be need to have good nutrition for their own bodies to nurture the unborn child in the next nine months. Anything that impacts mothers' health can impact babies' health. To believe otherwise is akin to placing your head in the sand and believing a stork will bring you a perfect child.

As a mother-to-be accepts this responsibility for the future of her unborn child, she may need to change some eating habits. The process of changing habits is difficult but the results will pay off as you learn more about good nutrition and the care of teeth. When you begin to feed your baby table foods, you will be aware of the dangers of sweets and soda pop on baby's teeth and their effect on the developing body and brain.

As baby's teeth develop, it becomes important to develop the habit of cleaning the teeth. When little teeth appear, parents can use a clean wash cloth to wipe the food coatings and acids in the mouth from the teeth before bed and maybe even at another time in the day. It is the combination of the food and the digestive juices in the mouth that bring about cavities. Healthy baby teeth are important as a place holder for the adult teeth that will come in. Healthy baby teeth also provides the healthy mouth environment in which the adult teeth will grow. As your toddler learns to tolerate gentle wiping of the teeth, you can introduce a soft baby toothbrush to your routines.

One of the seemingly innocuous habits we imprint upon our babies is sipping all day long from a sippy cup. The habit of using a juice filled sippy cup all day is bad in at least two ways. The child will have the sugars and acids of the juice coating the teeth continuously and secondly, they will never really be hungry for a sit down meal. You will spend a few months wiping up spills while your child masters a small child size cup. However if you give your child a jice filled sippy cup to walk around with all day you will spend a lifetime on dental work.

Toad House Publishing

Twinkletime Rhymes to Print

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Care of Baby's Teeth

February is Children's Dental Month so we will be talking about the care of baby's teeth. On the WLDY talkline show, Friday, February 26, one of our local dentists, Dr. Stephen Reisner will be on the show and will take any of your questions. Dr. Reisner and his staff have donated countless hours visiting area preschools, helping children learn the importance of eating healthy foods and learning to brush and floss their teeth correctly. However, just as with all areas of development, key routines are not learned om the yearly visit to the dentist or the week long preschool lesson on dental health. Key routines are learned within families who prioritize these routines. Only families make dental care a priority by helping children to brush, floss, and by providing healthy foods to grow strong teeth.

Baby teeth are important! Children need strong, healthy teeth to chew their food, speak clearly, and have a great-looking smile. Baby teeth keep a space in the jaw for the adult teeth. If a baby tooth is lost early, the teeth beside it drifts into the empty space. When it's time for the adult teeth to come in, there may not be enough room. This can make the teeth crooked or crowded.

I have two tidbits of wisdom to share with you as you think of how to improve your routines for your child and for yourself. The first is about brushing teeth. Is there a day that passes that you do not eat? On those days that you do not eat, can you skip brushing your teeth. The second is about flossing. This one, told to me almost ten years ago by my son-in-law changed my flossing habits forever! Of course you don't need to floss all your teeth every day, just floss the ones you want to keep.

I hope these silly musings put a smile on your face as you think about how you may begin to make changes in the routines you have to improve your child's oral health. Next week we will speak more seriously on the beginnings of healthy teeth

Toad House Publishing

Twinkletime Rhymes to Print