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Last April I asked LM_NET for suggestions for additional fun items to place=20
on my desk and around the library for children to look at, touch, and=20
question.  I received fantastic ideas so I am passing these on. One person=20
even mailed me some rocks, colored glass and shells from the beach. I'm stil=
looking for volcanic rocks. Thank you to everyone and I hope this sparks=20
ideas while the year is fresh.

*A library mascot such as Clifford=20
*game pieces such as marbles, ball and jacks
*Dover books for fun especially small ones
*Trivia questions or books on trivia=20
*Small joke books=20
*Book characters=20
*Russian nesting dolls
*a geode to spark interest in rocks and minerals
*a fossil
*dried starfish.=20
*fresh flowers.
*Serenity Fountain
*Cheshire Cat (sits on the top of my computer monitor)
*Amethyst crystals
*Sea shell collection
*Small Teddy Bears in military uniforms
*Wasp's nest (long dead and fumigated)
*plastic tangram makings and outlined designs for them to try
*Small puzzles from a nature shop
*Lots of Japanese stuff--we have Japanese teachers visit each year.
*A miniature Statue of Liberty
*textural items. Some include: gourds and squash, the weirder the better=20
*different kinds of evergreen branches=20
*a big bowl of nuts=A0=20
*a sheaf of wheat, a bowl of  kernels, a bowl of flour, and a loaf of bread.
*Crystals growing in open bowls--grow 2 kinds and compare the  shapes rock=20
and mineral samples with mini-magnifying=A0glasses=20
*a broken umbrella skeleton--the kids had to guess what it  was.
*plastic reptiles=20
*2-3 Beanie Babies on the computer, depending upon the season!!
*Shore exhibit with shells and other stuff found on beach or stuff from some=
other environment or biome.
*a small birdhouse and a palm-size copy of the Rosetta Stone
* items, products, etc. representative of the state and your area

*gargoyle book ends (Barnes & Noble) for whatever I=92m recommending=20
*Water toys from puzzle shops with different colored liquids that don=92t mi=
travel from top to bottom and turn wheels or race against another.=20
*A small, tiny book about hand shadow puppets, *the indian rain stick, a=20
*microphone that is turned on (battery)
*Story teller dolls
*Mexican artwork
*An antique mantle clock
*Collection of beautifully carved birds
*Collection of antique books
*The Japanese doll in Kimono is "real" porcelain in a glass case
*the carved whales are signed by an artist from Cabo San Lucas
*My son is teaching in Africa and he will lend me his talking drum collectio=
on occasion and Masi masks.
*Colored water timers where the water dribbles or drops or runs crookedly to=
the bottom.
*A small "singing stick" from Bali (sorry, the kites and sarongs have all=20
made their way into student hands) and a *glass starfish (or heart)=20
paperweight blown here in Vancouver (there's a starfish story if that's what=
you choose)
*Stephen Caney has some books of unusual inventions. =20
*3 palm-size rocks at the Everything's A Dollar Store--meant to be placed in=
a garden but I am going to put them on the desk--inscribed Peace, Honesty,=20
Kindness. I have to put felt on  them so they won't scratch the desk, though=
*an Eight Ball. =20
*a small puppy  figurine in a basket on my desk--the students often pet it!
*"backyard gatherings" like raw cotton, bird feathers, an old turtle shell,=20
neat rocks, a bird nests, wasps nests, dried flowers, bones, shells  from th=
beach, even dead bugs and different colors of dirt.=20
*Birthday cards from Hillary Clinton and Al Gore that you can buy at the=20
local grocery store.
*Simple wooden puzzle forms, like a ball, box or other item with pieces that=
have to be put together to make the whole. =20
*A Noah's ark with alot of wooden animals and primitive art of wood etc. tha=
can be handled.=20
*a variety of cones from various trees? See if they can identify them.
*antlers, the shark  jaw, a dried blow fish that I have. Anything that can=20
relate to a non-fiction book seems to grab them.
*Hobby-type  stuff (fishing equipment-bobbers, sinkers, flies w/hook ends cu=
off, stamps & collecting books and equipment, some of the new scissors and=20
punches that cut neat designs).

Diane R. Chen, Library Information Specialist
Hickman Elementary School, 112 Stewart's Ferry Pike
Nashville, TN 37214
email:  chend@k12tn.net

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