Blog


Activities to Do at Home

June 1-7

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Hora de cuentos en el hogar: Día Mundial del Medio Ambiente

Es fácil seguir leyendo y aprendiendo con sus hijos. ¡Vamos a divertirnos con el medio ambiente!

Rise & Shine Storytime: My Spring Robin

Ms. Mary shares the book My Spring Robin by Anne Rockwell, illustrated by Harlow Rockwell, in this spring-themed storytime.

Storytime at Home: World Environment Day

You and your child can enjoy storytime at home. This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of World Environment Day, which is June 5, 2020.

You can also find resources and recommendations from our staff.

FOR TEENS

Anime Recommendations

Specialists Neil, Penny, and Perry recommend two anime series perfect for entertainment and binge-watching. Hear them discuss the series in this video, and read a summary of their recommendations here.

FOR ADULTS

Book Chat: Kind of Magical & Books in Boston

Allyson, Vanessa, Chris, and Becca are sharing their recent reads, including what they've found so great about their book choices. Hear them discuss their suggested titles in this video.

Nachos with Nick

Nick Kindelsperger, a Chicago food and dining reporter, shares the history behind one of the most popular snacks in the United States, as well as tips for at-home nachos, in this excerpt from Skokie Public Library's online event May 14, 2020.

PERFORMANCES

Tiny Dance Film Festival 

Explore this retrospective of short (less than 10 minutes) dance films from around the globe.

Straight No Chaser

This superb (and funny!) a cappella ensemble that originated at Indiana University is presenting a new song each Wednesday on its YouTube channel. The latest video posted is a lovely version of “On the Road Again/I Play the Road.” Subscribe to SNC’s Quarantine Sessions.


May 25-31

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Be the Artist: Torn Paper Landscape

J.M.W. Turner was a fabulous landscape artist and a master of light. This project explores his landscape design. 

Rise & Shine Storytime: A House for Hermit Crab

Ms. Mary shares the story of Hermit Crab, who is looking for a comfortable home in the picture book A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle.

Storytime at Home: Rain

You and your child can enjoy storytime at home. This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of rainy weather.

You can also find resources and recommendations from our staff.

FOR ADULTS

Explore the Sewing Machine: Janome Magnolia 7330

Jimmy provides an introduction to the Janome Magnolia 7330 sewing machine, including how to thread the machine's needle.

Baking Tart Cherry Scones

Maria Kozi, owner and baker of Kneads & Wants Artisan Bakery on Lincoln Avenue in Skokie, demonstrates how to make tart cherry scones in this recording from the library’s online event May 6, 2020. Get the recipe here.

PERFORMANCES

Tiny Dance Film Festival 

Explore this retrospective of short (less than 10 minutes) dance films from around the globe.

Straight No Chaser

This superb (and funny!) a cappella ensemble that originated at Indiana University is presenting a new song each Wednesday on its YouTube channel. The latest video posted is a lovely version of “On the Road Again/I Play the Road.” Subscribe to SNC’s Quarantine Sessions.


May 18-24

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Animal Facts: Axolotls

Ms. Quetzalli and her stuffed animal friend Mickey D. explain some facts about axolotls, including their regenerative abilities and their mythical origin story

Rise & Shine Storytime: They All Saw a Cat

Ms. Mary shares the picture book They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel.

Storytime at Home: Baby’s Day

You and your little one can enjoy storytime at home. This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of all the things babies do in a day.

Storytime with Ms. Meleesa - Little Pea

Ms. Meleesa shares the story of Little Pea, who just wants to skip straight to vegetables for dessert--no sweets!

You can also find resources and recommendations from our staff.

FOR ALL AGES

Make a Confetti Cannon

Whether you’re celebrating graduates (it’s the Week of the Graduate in Niles Township!), birthdays, or anything else, you can add to your festivities by creating a homemade confetti cannon with at-home materials.

Skokie Spirit Shines Through: Kindness Tree

Participate in the Skokie Spirit Shines Through campaign and create this craft kindness tree.

FOR ADULTS

Learn to Knit

Get started with knitting using this knitting basics resource guide and a beginner’s coffee cozy pattern from Becca, a seasoned knitter on the library’s staff.

Sandwich Cookies with Pooja Makhijani

Try this recipe for sandwich cookies from writer Pooja Makhijani. You can watch the recording of our April 30 live event with Pooja, which took place on Zoom.

PERFORMANCES

WDCB Streaming Events 

WDCB, Chicago’s Home for Jazz, has a calendar of upcoming streamed performances featuring jazz, blues, world, and folk music.

International Bluegrass Music Association 

See the schedules and attendance details for online bluegrass concerts and festivals. Events are currently taking place daily.


May 11-17

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Bird Puppets with Ms. Caitlin and Haven

Join Ms. Caitlin and Haven for a song perfect for singing with puppets of our fine feathered friends: birds!

Hora de cuentos en el hogar: Vehículos

Es fácil seguir leyendo y aprendiendo con sus hijos. ¡Vamos a divertirnos con los vehículos!

Rise & Shine Storytime: The Great Gracie Chase

Ms. Mary reads The Great Gracie Chase by Cynthia Rylant, with illustrations by Mark Teague. Due to publisher restrictions, this video will only be available until June 30.

Skokie Spirit Shines Through: Kindness Rocks

Get crafty and leave little tokens of your Skokie spirit on your next walk using these instructions for creating kindness rocks.

Storytime at Home: Things That Go

You and your little one can enjoy storytime at home. This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of vehicles and things that go.

You can also find resources and recommendations from our staff.

ADULTS

Book Chat: Books That Speak to Use during Stay-at-Home

Allyson, Becca, Tiffany, and Mimosa--all familiar faces from the Reader Services desk at the library and our new online book clubs--share what they've been reading recently. What's on your reading list?

Learn to Crochet

Get started with crochet using this Crochet Basics Resource Guide and an easy moss stitch potholder pattern from Lynnanne, a library staff member with years of crochet experience and lots of great crochet projects under her belt.

Meditation at Home

Join Chelsea Ribaudo, who leads monthly guided meditation sessions at Skokie Public Library, in this guided meditation for the month of May.

Tart Cherry Scones from Kneads & Wants

Make some tasty scones using this recipe shared by Maria Kozi, baker and owner of Kneads & Wants, on Lincoln Avenue just north of the library.

PERFORMANCES

Streaming from London’s Royal Albert Hall

Royal Albert Hall has an ongoing series of streaming performances. This week includes singer/songwriter David Ford, an opera for kids program, and Sea Shambles, a science, music, and comedy show about the past, present, and future of our planet.

Streaming Music Performances from NPR Music

NPR Music is compiling a list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and type of music, with links to streaming platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Most are free, often with digital tip jars and opportunities to directly support artists by buying music and merchandise.


May 4-10

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Baby Fingerplays: Ideas for Caregivers

Ms. Mary shares three simple fingerplays that you can enjoy with your little one.

Storytime at Home: Pets

You and your little one can enjoy storytime at home! This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of pets.

We’re Mad for Mo!

Our readers and storytime leaders love, love, love books by Mo Willems, and we’ve got three read-aloud videos to share with you:


You can also check out resources and recommendations from our staff.

ALL AGES

Be the Artist: Nature Art

Our staff artist, Sue, developed an art activity based on the work of artist Andy Goldsworthy. What will you create with nature materials near your home?

How to Make a Quilt Square

Jimmy demonstrates how to make a quilt square using fabric scraps. You can complete your square with a sewing machine or hand-sewing materials, or you can do a no-sew version with craft glue.

Skokie Spirit Shines Through: Make a No-Flame Lantern

Show your Skokie spirit and participate in the Skokie Spirit Shines Through campaign and Skokie Lights the Night by creating a no-flame lantern with a smartphone or flashlight and materials you probably have around your home.

PERFORMANCES

Streaming Music Performances from NPR Music

NPR Music is compiling a list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and type of music, with links to streaming platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Most are free, often with digital tip jars and opportunities to directly support artists by buying music and merchandise.

Streaming Ballet Performances from Pointe Magazine

Pointe Magazine compiles upcoming streaming events and digital ballet performances.


April 27-May 3

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Baby Bounces: Ideas for Caregivers

Ms. Mary demonstrates three rhymes perfect for fun baby time with your little one bouncing on your lap.

Make a Nesting Ball

Learn a bit about bird nests and create a nesting ball for birds using this this simple activity.

Storytime at Home: Family

You and your little one can enjoy storytime at home! This storytime sheet includes books, songs, and more exploring the theme of family.

Storytime with Ms. Meleesa: Polar Bear’s Underwear

Ms. Meleesa shares the funny story of Polar Bear, who has lost his underwear, as well as a couple of songs to learn and sing together.

You can also check out resources and recommendations from our staff.

ALL AGES

BOOMbox at Home: Make a Rain Gauge

Amy H. demonstrates how to make a rain gauge from materials you've probably already got around the house. You'll be all set to measure the rainfall in your yard or near your home.

Picture Consequence

Grab some paper, writing utensils, and a buddy to play this humorous drawing game--great for kids, teens, and adults.

Skokie Spirit Shines Through: Make a Mosaic Heart

Show your Skokie spirit and participate in the #SkokieSpiritShinesThrough campaign by making a craft or chalk mosaic heart.

ADULTS

Backyard Birding

Backyard birding is a simple and enjoyable way to engage in nature. In this video, Martha demonstrates how we can be curious about how birds behave towards each other, learn how to attract birds, and learn more about them. You can also check out Martha’s resource list and backyard birding cards.

Book Chat: What We’re Reading

Librarians Allyson, Becca, Lynnanne, and Megan talk about the titles they've been enjoying recently in this recorded video chat. What have you been reading lately?

PERFORMANCES

New York City Ballet

The company is broadcasting full ballets and excerpts twice a week, through May 29, for free, on its YouTube channel, Facebook page, and website.

Straight No Chaser

This superb (and funny!) a cappella ensemble is presenting a new song each Wednesday on its YouTube channel. So far, the campaign has included renditions of “Lean on Me,” “You’ve Got a Friend,” and even Toto’s “Africa.” Subscribe to SNC’s Quarantine Sessions.


April 20-26

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Animal Facts: Lions and Tigers

Ms. Quetzalli and her stuffed animal friend Tigy explain some of the differences between lions and tigers.

Be the Artist: Relief Art

Make textured art with simple supplies at home. What can you create? 

If You’re a Lion

Join Ms. Caitlin and Haven for a special animal-filled song. What's your favorite animal?

Make a Rainbow

If April showers bring May flowers, they can also bring rainbows! Create a rainbow craft at home.

Rise & Shine Storytime: Bear Snores On

Ms. Mary shares the picture book Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman, and read with permission from Simon & Schuster.

Check out more resources and recommendations from our staff.

ALL AGES

BOOMbox at Home: Make a Sculpture

Michelle demonstrates how to make a personal clay sculpture from materials you're probably already got around the house. To make the clay, you'll need 1 cup plain white flour, 1/4 cup water, 1/3 cup table salt, and 1 tablespoon cooking oil.

Photo Scavenger Hunt

Grab your camera or your phone to capture all of the photographs on this at-home scavenger hunt.

ADULTS

Health Scares in History from Mysterious Chicago

Local historian Adam Selzer, who was slated to present at the library this spring, recorded this video journey through different epidemics and health scares that have affected Chicago over the past 100 years. Adam will be participating in a live event on Wednesday, April 22, 7-8 pm. Sign up for this live event and receive the Zoom meeting link.

Make a Collage

All you need to create a personal collage at home are some basic art supplies and old magazines.

PERFORMANCES

Jazz at Lincoln Center

Jazz at Lincoln Center is streaming live jazz toward their goal of “expanding the global community for jazz.”

NPR Streaming Performances

NPR is keeping an ongoing list of live streaming performances of all types, from opera to folk to you name it. Check the listings frequently to see what has been added.


April 13-19

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Make a Flying Superhero (PDF)

Grab a piece of paper and some coloring supplies to make this fun, flying superhero!

Rise & Shine Storytime: Little Quack (VIDEO)

Ms. Mary shares duck-themed activities, including a song and the picture book Little Quack by Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Derek Anderson, and read with permission of Simon & Schuster.

Saponify! The Magic (and Science) of Soap (VIDEO)

Explore the power of soap with Ms. Caitlin and Desi! Try some easy at-home experiments, learn what soap is made of, and review some tips for handwashing.

ADULTS

Baseball’s Home Run Explosion (VIDEO)

Sports analyst and writer Rob Arthur explains what's led to the increase in home runs in major league baseball. Behind the sudden and massive spike in home runs is an unexpected cause: the ball itself has become more aerodynamic. For more information, read Arthur’s articles about x-rayed baseballs and how many home runs Barry Bond would have hit in 2019.

Explore Creativebug (VIDEO)

Creativebug is a resource for anyone interested in exploring their creativity. Use your Skokie Public Library card to access classes and tutorials on topics like sewing, cooking, and scrapbooking.

Stay-at-Home Meditation (VIDEO)

Chelsea Ribaudo, who leads monthly guided meditation sessions at Skokie Public Library, recorded this guided meditation you can use at home while the library building is closed.

PERFORMANCES

Ailey All Access (STREAMING VIDEO)

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is streaming full-length works from its repertory, with broadcasts of past performances every Thursday at 7 pm Eastern time/6 pm Central time. You can see Judith Jamison’s “Divining” (April 9-12) and Rennie Harris’s “Lazarus” (April 16-19). The site also offers shorter videos at any time.

London Symphony Orchestra (YOUTUBE)

Each Sunday and Thursday, this wonderful orchestra is streaming a concert on its YouTube channel.


April 6-12

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Backyard Nature Walk (PDF)

Activate your senses and discover what nature has waiting for you in your backyard, or outside your front door. 

Be the Artist: Negative Space (PDF)

Making art with negative space will give your brain a rest from screens and strengthen hand eye coordination. And it is just plain fun! 

Toy Census (PDF)

A census is a count of everyone who lives in a home. You can do a census count of your favorite toys.

FOR ALL AGES

Show Us Your At-Home Creations

On Monday we'll be sharing on Instagram some of the creative and crafty projects our staff have been working on! We invite you to share your own creations with us by posting to Instagram and tagging the library.

PERFORMANCES

Berlin Philharmonic

Log on to the Digital Concert Hall ticket page with the code BERLINPHIL and use it for free for 30 days. No cancellation needed when your 30 days are up. More than 600 orchestral concerts are available, including 15 with new chief conductor, Kirill Petrenko.

Music Live Streams

NPR Music has compiled a list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and genre, with links out to streaming platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. It is a living document that will be updated every day until it's no longer needed.

International Bluegrass Music Association 

See the schedules and attendance details for online bluegrass concerts and festivals. Events are currently taking place daily.

WDCB Virtual Events 

WDCB, Chicago’s Home for Jazz, has a calendar of upcoming virtual streamed performances featuring jazz, blues, world, and folk music.


March 30-April 5

FOR KIDS AND FAMILIES

Is Your Cat Left-Pawed or Right-Pawed?

Does your cat have a preferred paw? Here’s how to find out which paw your feline friend prefers (PDF).

FOR ALL AGES

Show Us Your Work-from-Home Buddies

See our Instagram stories on Wednesday, April 1, as some of our staff share pictures and stories of their work-from-home buddies, of the stuffed and live pet variety. Share your own photo and tag the library.

FOR ADULTS

Creative Writing Prompts

Use these five prompts (PDF) to start a new creative writing piece or add to an old one. Some will work for poetry and fiction, and others for nonfiction writing.

Performances

Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain 

Formed in 1985, this ensemble, made up of only ukuleles of various sizes, along with the voices of its eight members, blends elements of rock, classical, jazz, folk, film soundtracks, and other genres into a unique musical experience. They’ve uploaded a one-hour recorded live performance on YouTube that is lots of fun.

Music Live Streams

NPR Music has compiled a list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and genre, with links out to streaming platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. It is a living document that will be updated every day until it's no longer needed.

International Bluegrass Music Association 

See the schedules and attendance details for online bluegrass concerts and festivals. Events are currently taking place daily.

WDCB Virtual Events 

WDCB, Chicago’s Home for Jazz, has a calendar of upcoming virtual streamed performances featuring jazz, blues, world, and folk music.