Cool Toys Pic of the day – Tumblebooks



I’ve been awake a few too many hours right now. This is because I got
up early to attend a webinar from the State Department about the uses
of e-books in American public libraries, especially those in New York
City. Christopher Platt was the presenter. Yes, he is from New York,
which is in the same timezone as mine, but the presentation was so
early because he was presenting from Rome, where it was afternoon.
NYPL may be the largest library providing general interest e-books to
their patrons as items that can be checked out. It was very
interesting. The NYPL e-book site uses Overdrive as a backend, as do
many other libraries. This is a new technology, a new type of service,
and there is still a lot of room for growth, especially with how to
find the books.

New York Public Library: E-Books:


But enough of that. More about the presentation will go into my
ETechLib blog. Here, I wanted to talk about Tumblebooks, which was my
favorite of the morning. I’ve been collecting kiddylit since before I
had children. My kids had to get permission to borrow my kids books.
Later I started what I believe to have been the first website for
preschool children, the Mother Goose Pages which I began in 1995. At that time, several people
made fun of me, saying it was a dumb idea since everyone knows
preschool kids can’t read and don’t use computers. Well, everyone knew
it then. Not so true now, eh? What I found was that the site was used
by parents of young children, especially those stationed in other
countries, teachers of English as a Second Language, pastors
researching sermons, grandparents, people researching either the
rhymes or the history or cultural context, musicians, and many others.
This doesn’t surprise anyone now, I’m sure. When my son was small we
acquired an astonishing variety of interactive books on CD-ROM, with
great artwork, charming music, vibrant narrations, engaging humorous
surprises built-in, animations, jokes, “easter eggs”, intellectual
puzzles and challenges, etc. I’ve been rather sad that while the
CD-ROMS were well preserved, most of them no longer work on today’s

TumblelBooks to the rescue! “TumbleBooks are created by adding
animation, sound, music and narration to existing picture books in
order to produce an electronic picture book which you can read, or
have read to you.” They have a nice selection, books in multiple languages (English, Spanish, French),
picture books and chapter books. They also offer games and teaching
resources. They have reasonable pricing for libraries and schools, but
no option for personal subscriptions.

Now, to be fair, since I usually highlight free resources, I feel
compelled to share some free ebook resources for children. (US government):
NOTE: Literacy promotion with many wonderful resources.

NOTE: The Screen Actors Guild Foundation members read aloud famous
children’s books like Stellaluna and The Polar Express.

Archive: Children’s Library:
NOTE: has many of the greats of classic children’s
literature collected here, complete with full illustrations in various
formats to support most (and possibly all) current e-book devices.
Best of all, they are all free and quite searchable. Almost 3,000
titles in just this part of the collection, with vastly more in the
adult and literary sections.


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