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Wattpad: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

Is Wattpad good for kids?

*edited to add*

This blog post was written in July of 2015, and Wattpad, like the rest of the world, has changed considerably since then! As with any social media site, be wary of security and inappropriate content. If your teens are on Wattpad, talk with them about what they're reading and writing, and discuss how plagiarism is always a concern when sharing work on public forums. And if you're an educator looking for ways for students to share their writing, consider a classroom blog or explore some of the sites found at Common Sense


My oldest son is a fairly typical 13-year-old. His room is a mess, he fights with his brothers, he loves to go hiking (with friends, not parents) and he stays up very late at night.

He used to stay up late reading books and I could always pat myself on the back and think, “He may be tired but at least he’s reading!” Now, though, he stays up late on the computer.

“You should be reading!” I called to him the other night as I passed his brightly lit room on the way to my own bed.

“I am reading!” he called back. “And I’m writing my own book.”

We Love Librarians!

Have I mentioned how much we love librarians? Librarians have been on my mind this week because of the ALA conference. Every day I send out tweets about the Nomad booth at ALA (Booth 1337! Stop by! Great show deals!) and how we love librarians.

A Different Kind of Professional Development

How to Become Better at Your Job Without Really Meaning To

Professional development—that's such a dry phrase, isn't it? Imagine if we called school “academic development.” Doesn't quite trigger thoughts of inspired learning and creative thinking, does it?

epublicist on FLickr, licensed under Creative Commons


Tips for Storytime: It's Not All About the Book

Librarians all over the country are gearing up for summer reading programs. You know what that means: storytimes galore! Everyone is trying to beat the summer slide, when kids lose two to three months worth of learning over summer vacation. Studies have shown that reading is a major factor in keeping brains thriving on these hot, lazy days. And while we hope that every child is enjoying books in their own homes, the reality is that storytime might be the only chance they have to hear a really great story.

Not your parents' storytime


Three Tips to Beat Summer Slide

Help your kids beat summer slide and have some fun this summer!

My kids are enjoying their last days of school today. They’re going to meet their new teachers, eat some cake, turn in their textbooks, and get their final report cards. And then they’re going to come home and play video games. For twelve weeks.

Bill Nye, Science Guy, Sets LightSail

The Planetary Society, with Bill Nye, succeeds with LightSail despite a number of setbacks.

You might have heard of Bill Nye. Super famous science guy known for getting kids all over the world excited about science? Well, check out his latest project: LightSail!

I Hate Science

A mere 24 hours after writing this blog post, I wanted to eat my words. Well, I wanted to eat something. I was hungry because dinner was late (later than usual) since I was helping my fifth grader glue construction paper to a tri-fold cardboard display. “I hate science,” my son muttered when he realized he hadn’t printed out his list of sources. Of which he had two. “Science is stupid.”

This does NOT look like my kid's science fair experience.

The school year may be slowly winding to a close, but there’s plenty of learning to do! And what better way to keep kids engaged in learning, and thus avoiding the dreaded summer slide, than steering them towards games that challenge them and make them do math without even knowing it! Try these websites to keep your children happy and learning.

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