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Making a Collection Count

For the Kids

Books for the kids

What’s Wrong With Timmy?

What's Wrong with Timmy - coverWhat’s Wrong with Timmy?
Shriver
2001

Submitter: This book is part of a series by Shriver for helping kids accept the fact that bad stuff happens to people and no one knows why.  There is another book we own by Shriver about Alzheimer’s.  Kate, our main character, learns through colored pencil illustrations that Timmy may be disabled, but he tries his best to be just like everyone else.  The book is very wordy, definitely something I wouldn’t read to any kids.  But the kicker for me is that it uses the term “mental retardation.”  As far as I know, even as a medical term, retardation was not used as a diagnosis any more by 2001, though I may be mistaken.  I’ve included more pictures of the text, because the illustrations are rather bland and forgettable.

Holly: I have yet to see the perfect “explain our differences” picture book. They either have weird illustrations or too many words or questionable terminology. This one is better than many, I’d say, but I do agree that there are too many words per page. I think it could be said just as nicely in a sentence or two per page with words kids can understand (and words they should be encouraged to use).

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Kid’s Guide to Birth

A Look at Birth - coverA Look at Birth
Photos by Forrai, Text by Pursell
1978

Submitter: This book came from a small public library. We discovered it while deep weeding our children’s collection. The book is intended to be used by parents to teach children how a child is born through photographs and simple text. While the text is simple, the photographs are rather traumatic and confusing. I’m not sure what age the book is intended for and young children would not understand the pictures. The pictures are black and white and out of focus. The picture of the father in the waiting room “dragging” on a cigarette did make me laugh with the accompanying text. I feel terrible for the woman in labor in the pictures and I’m grateful most women do not have to be rigged up to some kind of medieval torture device and forced to work against gravity to bring her baby into the world. A hospital birth has certainly changed since this time. Fathers are often in the delivery room and the birth experience is not quite like this anymore. The last circulation dates were from the year 2000 and 1988. Should have been weeded long ago. BTW, at least one of these pictures is not safe for work.

Holly: Books like this can be beautiful and helpful and useful. This just looks old and a bit scary.

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Global Warning

Global Warning Pop-Up Book - Cover

 

The Global Warning : A Pop-Up Book of Our Endangered Planet
Ransford
1992

Submitter: Sadly, we came upon this book when it was recently returned to the library by a family. Pop-up books in general are bad ideas for libraries because they never last very long. This one would have been weeded on condition alone. But, the subject matter and demonstrative pull tabs showing, among other things, acid rain, deforestation, whale hunting, and baby seal clubbing made it a candidate for this blog. The bulldozer pull-tab knocks over trees. The deforestation pull-tab was broken so I did not take a photo of it. We are a small botanical and horticultural special library and we do have a children’s collection. This title is no longer a part of it.

Holly: Oh good! You can interact with the book and get your deforestation and baby seal clubbing kicks without actually harming anything. So…the lesson here is that these things are bad, but they’ve made it totally fun to participate virtually.

 

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