The “Hidden Treasures” collection is a group of resources inspired by my interests in art and dynamic and inclusive ways of learning. They are resources I discovered during my shifts at the library as I became more familiar with the physical space. They are materials that are similar to ones you might see at a museum gift shop: interactive children’s books, graphic novels, and STEM kits. As a student in the Deaf Education program, I am always looking for resources that allow learners to participate in multi-sensory, relatable, and engaging ways. With this collection, I hope to encourage library users and educators to explore the library’s physical space more and try out new, multidimensional resources in their classrooms.
The following resources are on display on the second floor of the library. Feel free to check them out! The STEM kits (not on display) are available for in-library use only. You can check out these kits and similar ones at the services desk on the first floor.
1- The World is Waiting by Touch Books Inc. Photography for the Blind
You can experience pictures through touch with this braille book. Take a look at the Touch Color Code on the inside flap that serves as a key for understanding the different textures and colors.
2- Touch the Universe: a NASA braille book of astronomy by Noreen Grice
This is a book about astronomy that implements elements of universal design. Everyone, including sighted, blind, or partially sighted people, can read about the solar system with the large-print text and/or braille text layered on the same page. You can also see and feel the embossed photos taken by the Hubble Space Telescope.
3- Counting by Fleur Star
Children can learn how to count with this board book that includes English text, braille, and textured, high-contrast pictures. The combination of braille and English text allows for sighted, blind, or partially sighted family members to participate in reading time together.
Bilingual & Multilingual Children’s Books
4- Am I Half-Giraffe? by Jungmiwha Bullock & Christopher Matthews
This multilingual children’s book tells the story of a mixed-girl named Nicole in 5 languages: English, French, Spanish, Korean, and Afrikaans. This symbolic, coming-of-age story follows Nicole's journey in exploring her identity and finding out what it means to be part giraffe and part lion.
5- Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Eric Carle & Bill Martin, translated by Tsai Fong
Brown Bear is one of Eric Carle’s popular children’s books for young learners. This Chinese-English version is one of the dual language editions of this book. It is a resource for bilingual classrooms and bilingual homes.
Interactive Children’s Books
6- Mommy? by Maurice Sendak, Arthur Yorinks, & Matthew Reinhart
Maurice Sendak, best known for Where the Wild Things Are, created this wordless picture book of a little boy who searches for his mother in a haunted house. The reader can lift flaps and discover monsters that spring up from the pages. You can also find the Spanish version of this book, titled ¿Mamá? in the Children’s Fiction/JUV section of the library.
7- Birds of a Feather by Francisco Pittau and Bernadette Gervais
This large, interactive book contains facts on 40+ birds hidden behind flaps, puzzle pieces, and strips of paper.
8- Open This Little Book by Jesse Klausmeier and Suzy Lee
The die-cut pages in this book take the reader on an adventure through “books” hidden within other “books” of different sizes and colors. The playful format of this book encourages the reader to think about the multiple layers of both the story and physical pages in a book.
9- Hot Dog Taste Test by Lisa Hanawalt
Lisa Hanawalt, also known as the designer and producer of BoJack Horseman, shares her quirky, humorous life experiences in this collection of comics and illustrations. The content of the book features an amalgam of themes including food, relationships, and random thoughts.
10- Gumballs by Erin Nations
This collection of comics details the author’s gender transition journey, life as a triplet, and a fictional story about a teenager navigating the world of romance. These comics include some randomness and some real-life experiences that will incite giggles and deep thoughts.
11- Captain America:Truth by Robert Morales & Kyle Baker
This fictional story reveals the history behind the Super Soldier Serum that was used to create Captain America. It explains how a group of African American soldiers were used in inhumane experiments in the 1940s. Readers may note the similarities of this story to historical events like the Tuskegee Experiment and treatment of soldiers during the era of military segregation.
12- El Deafo by Cece Bell & David Lasky
Based on the author’s own life story, this fictional graphic novel depicts the childhood experiences of a young girl who becomes deaf (and part superhero!) after becoming ill with meningitis. The book includes anecdotes of typical growing pains, but also gives insight into what it’s like to grow up with hearing loss.
13- Building Stories by Chris Ware
Chris Ware, a cartoonist and graphic designer, created this unique kit that tells the story of its characters in an unconventional way. Rather than using one form of text, Chris designed a story that takes place across 14 different forms of text. You can piece together the lives of the residents of a Chicago apartment building through a magazine, comic strip, booklet, and many more text forms.
14- Before After by Anne-Margot Ramstein & Matthias Arégui
Egg, chicken. Chicken, egg. Day, night. Slingshot, broken window. Rocket, footprints on the moon. What came before? What comes after? You can create your story and timeline with this wordless picture book for all ages.
15- Fun With Beads by The MET & Janet Coles
You can learn about Ancient Egypt’s history and culture with this jewelry-making kit from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The booklet includes instructions for 17 designs and information on how the jewelry was made and why it was worn.
16- The Big Toe by Joy Cowley, June Melser, & Martin Bailey
Something way down the road is looking for its big toe. Will the toe be returned? Find out in this big book version, great for joint reading in group settings.
17- Caribbean Carnival: Songs of the West Indies by Irving Burgie & Rosa Guy
Irving Burgie, famous for working with Harry Belafonte and popularizing the 1950s hit “Day-O,” shares a collection of calypso songs for children to learn and sing along. These songs include famous chants from Caribbean islands such as “Day-O,” “Jamaica Farewell,” and “Que Bonita Bandera.”
This robotics kit allows you to build five different robots that walk, talk, and think. This kit is located behind the Services Desk on the first floor and is available for in-library use only. Ask a library associate for assistance.
Young engineers can practice their building and problem-solving skills while helping Goldie the girl inventor make a contraption to clean her stubborn dog. This kit is located behind the Services Desk on the first floor and is available for in-library use only. Ask a library associate for assistance.