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An A-Plus In Our Books

School’s Back In Session. Guess What? Learning Never Ends

By Tara Bannon Williamson

Park Hill Librarian

Many students are already back at school, but learning never ceases at your public library. You are never too old to learn a new skill or pick up a new hobby, and we’re here to help you explore and discover. No matter the reason you are hitting the books, here are a few back-to-school reads that earn an A-Plus in our books.

The King of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes (Ages 3 – 6)

This upbeat gem of a book that provides a positive message about starting kindergarten. Vivid colors complement the charming illustrations, so whether you read this one-on-one or to a classroom, this book leaves everyone cheering.

The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family by Ibtihaj Muhammad (Ages 5 – 10)

Imagine how you might feel on the first day your sister, sixth-grader Asiya, wears a hijab to school. What might you learn as you see the way others treat her? This thoughtful and inspiring story celebrates the wonderful relationship between the sisters Asiya and Faizah.

It’s the First Day of School – Forever! by R. L. Stine (Ages 9 – 13)

You thought your first day of 5th grade was bad? Artie has it waaaaay worse and has to keep reliving it over and over again. Fast-paced and silly, this is a great book to wind down after a tough day of school and realize maybe your day wasn’t so bad after all.

Spidey: Freshman Year by Robbie Thompson (Ages 12 & Up)

Prepare to laugh out loud at Spiderman’s antics during his first year of high school in this action-packed graphic novel. You don’t have to be in high school to sympathize with this superhero’s woes.

The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship and Hope in an American Classroom by Helen Thorpe (Ages 16 & Up)

New York Times Bestselling Author Helen Thorpe spent a year in Denver’s South High School to learn more about the journey and experiences of refugees through the eyes of these young adults and their families. Join us on Wednesday, Sept. 18 at the Park Hill branch to hear Thorpe speak about her experiences and what she learned.

Resources For Teachers and Students

• Need books for your classroom? Librarians at any branch can put together a set of books for you to check out. Complete the request form at and a librarian will begin working on your set within 72 hours.

• Need homework help? The library offers databases and resources for students 24/7, including chat reference help. Be sure to ask about research appointments too.

Pauline Robinson Events

Tech Help Appointments | Tuesdays, noon – 1 p.m.

Get technology assistance from one of our in-house experts on your own device or a public computer. Learn the basics, such as email, social networking, word processing and eMedia. Call the library at 720-865-0290 to schedule an appointment.

Preschool Storytime | Wednesdays, Sept. 4, 11, 18, 25, 10:30 a.m. 

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for 3-5 year olds and their parents or caregivers.

Can You Recycle This? |Thursday, Sept. 5, 2 p.m.

Members from Alpine Waste and Recycling will be here to discuss the importance of recycling and other fun facts.

eBooks Made Easy | Saturday, Sept. 14, noon

Learn how to access library eBooks, audiobooks and video with your library card.  Bring your own smartphone, tablet, or laptop, or explore the eBooks website using a library computer.

Pauline Robinson Book Club | Saturday, Sept. 28, noon

This month’s selection: The Passage by Justin Cronin. Drop-ins are welcome.

Park Hill Library Events

All Ages Storytime | Thursdays at 10:30 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for children of all ages and their parents or caregivers. Craft activity immediately follows the program.

Baby Storytime | Thursdays & Fridays at 11:15 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for babies ages

0-18 months and their caregivers. Play and social time immediately follow the program.

Toddler Storytime | Fridays at 10:30 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for toddlers ages 18-36 months and their caregivers.

The River, with Author Peter Heller | Wednesday, Sept. 4, 6 p.m.

When Peter Heller was 17, he was at a party and noticed a rather despondent-looking guy standing at the edge of the crowd. He went on to tell Heller that he had just lost his wife – they had been camping, and she just “disappeared.” That tiny seed of an idea grew in Heller’s imagination, and he convinced himself that this was actually a murder. When the author sat down to write that story, the first line of The River “fluttered” down – “They had been smelling smoke for two days.” Come hear Heller, who is based in Denver, talk about his writing and how the poetry of language is his muse. BookBar Denver will have copies of The River and other Heller titles available for purchase and signing.

After Hours Mini Golf  | Saturday, Sept. 7, 5:30 – 7 p.m.

Sign up for a tee time starting at 5:30, bring food items to be donated to the Greater Park Hill Food Bank and help create the last hole from these items.

Ride Sharing Apps with Senior Planet  | Tuesday, Sept. 10, 4 p.m.

Apps have changed the way many people get around. This presentation will explore ride sharing apps, which are also known as e-hailing apps. Learn about the two most popular apps—Uber and Lyft—and the pros and cons of them both.

Teen Advisory Board (TAB) | Tuesdays, Sept. 10 & 24, 6 p.m.

Join the Park Hill TAB. Help plan events and projects, talk about your favorite books, music, movies and make your opinion count. Plus snacks. Ideal for ages 13-18.

Lasting Conversations: Journeys and Values | Saturday, Sept. 14, 2:30 p.m.

What do we owe to each other? How do we talk about what matters most? Engage in one or all of our monthly discussions using classic and contemporary texts as springboards for talking about pressing issues. September’s topic is Homelands.

Kids’ Book Club | Tuesday, Sept. 17, 3:30 p.m.

Book: Shelter Pet Squad: Jelly Bean by Cynthia Lord

Adopt a stuffed pet and create a mini doghouse craft. Ideal for ages 6 to 9.

Welcoming Week with Helen Thorpe  | Wednesday, Sept. 18, 6:30 p.m.

What does it mean to be an active ally to the immigrant and refugee community? Bestselling author Helen Thorpe, who wrote a book on the topic of refugee resettlement The Newcomers wowed readers, describes her experiences getting to know various refugee families in Denver. Come be inspired to get to know your refugee and immigrant neighbors better. Food provided by Comal Heritage Food Incubator,  a lunch restaurant and training program. Its goal is to provide skills in culinary arts and business as a platform for economic development to aspiring women- many originating from Mexico, El Salvador, Syria, Iraq and Ethiopia – to maintain and celebrate their traditions through entrepreneurial ventures.

No Strings Attached Book Chat | Saturday, Sept. 21, 11 a.m.

Read whatever you want and attend whenever you can. Share a recent read, an old favorite, or anything in between.

The Festival of Mountain and Plain and Colorado’s First Movies with David Emrich | Saturday, , Sept. 21, 2:30 p.m.

Colorado’s movie-making history starts with Edison’s filming at Denver’s Mardi Gras, the Festival of Mountain and Plain, in 1897. The Festival’s rich history will be shown through photographs and these movies.

Connecting the Dots on Dementia | Tuesday, Sept. 24, 4 p.m.

Connecting the Dots is specifically designed for family members and friends who are concerned about or caring for someone who is living with any form of dementia.

Concert on the Lawn: “Ragtime” Jack Radcliffe | Wednesday, Sept. 25, 6:30 p.m.

“Ragtime” Jack Radcliffe has been performing for more than 40 years and was inducted into the Old-Time Music Association Hall of Fame in 2014. Bring a camp chair or a blanket and enjoy Jack’s unique performance with uplifting wit and historical anecdotes on the lawn.

Ask a Master Gardener and Plant Swap | Saturday, Sept. 28, 11 a.m.

Ask one of the amazing Colorado Master Gardeners, who are trained in horticulture by Colorado State University Extension staff, and can answer your gardening questions. You can also find perennials, bulbs and seeds you’ve been looking for and bring your extras to trade.

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