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By Carmen Ensinger
With more and more Spanish speaking students entering the school system these days and a push to learn a second language, the Carrollton Public Library is both encouraging students to learn the Spanish language and accommodating those who do speak the language with the latest Story Walk.
“Where’s Eric” or “Donde Esta Eric” is the latest story featured on the Story Walk posted alongside the walk leading up to the library.
“We do have a family who comes to the library with several children and English is their second language,” Assistant Library Laura Moss said.
“We want them to feel included along with the rest of the children and while they are learning the language, because this book is bilingual, we thought this would help them along with helping other children learn their language as well,” said Moss.
The book follows the adventures of Eric and his little sister, Julieta, whom Eric is always trying to get into trouble. Mom, however, always knows, somehow, who is really behind the mischief. The book is in English and Spanish so kids can read the English words with the Spanish words right beside it and vice versa and learn while they read.
The book is written by Isabel Munoz, who lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She taught literature to middle-school children and now works as a freelance writer and editor. She has published more than 100 books for children of all ages.
It is illustrated by Gustavo Mazali, also from Buenos Aires, a self-taught artist who has illustrated many children’s books published in Europe and the United States. His children are his main source of inspiration.
As an extra special treat, a second Story Walk is on the sidewalk. This story walk is called Dinosaurs Explore, chosen to go along with this week’s story hour which was to be dinosaur themed.
“Normally, we put out a different Story Hour about once a month, but once in a while, we put them out a little more often,” Moss said. “This month, with all of the activities going on around the square, we knew there would be a lot of people out with a lot of kids, so we wanted to give them something to do while the parents were shopping around the square.”
The Story Walk Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Ferguson was seeking a way to get parents to be physically active along with their children.
According to Ferguson, the goal of the Story Walk is to promote early literacy, physical activity and family time together.
Once children have finished reading the story books posted in front of the library, they can have a go at finding the hidden painted rocks hidden around the library.
“This is just something fun we are doing for the kids that they seem to love,” Moss said. “We are painting rocks and hiding them around the grounds and the kids are absolutely thrilled when they find one. It’s something simple and inexpensive but it brings a lot of joy to the kids.”