Kids at Home with MPPL

Kids at Home with MPPL Blog

Dork Diaries Podcast

Dork Diaries podcast

Whether you’re already a fan of Dork Diaries or have not read them yet, you are in for a treat with the new Dork Diaries podcast, starring award-winning actress Jenni Barber, produced in partnership with Simon & Schuster Audio.

Meet Nikki Maxwell! She’s starting 8th grade in a new school—and her very first diary. An animated cast of characters hilariously performs Nikki’s Tales from a Not-So-Fabulous Life. In 15 episodes adapted from Rachel Renée Russell’s bestselling series, this podcast offers family entertainment for longtime fans and those meeting Nikki for the first time. New episodes available on Mondays and Fridays.

Find more fun on the Dork Diaries website, with printables for word games, creating your own dork diary, and much more. Books in the Dork Diaries series, as well as Renée Russell’s other series, The Misadventures of Max Crumbly, are available to read or listen to on Overdrive and Hoopla!

Go to this page for more great podcasts for kids.

Maker Monday: Four Ways to Paint Without a Paintbrush


  • something to cover the table, like newspaper
  • paper to paint on
  • 4 items to paint with: Q-tip, straw, popsicle stick, something to use as a stamp
  • paper plate or bowl
  • washable paint
  • Steps:         
  • 1. Use a Q-tip to dip in the paint and make dots on the paper.        
  • 2. Use an item as a stamp. Dip it in the paint and stamp it onto the paper.        
  • 3. To paint with a straw, squirt some paint on the paper, and roll the straw over the paint to spread it out in different directions.
  • 4. Dip a popsicle stick into the paint and draw designs on the paper.
Miss Amy and her painting

Among the many benefits of painting are the chance it gives you to express your emotions. Painting can help you communicate feelings through the use of different colors and movements with whatever you are painting with. Try putting on some music while you paint and let it inspire you!

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Family Friday: Baking Scones

Learn how to bake jam scones with Miss Mary!


  • 1 cup of flour
  • 2 tablespoons of butter 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup of milk
  • Jam


  • 1. Grease an oven tray lightly.
  • 2. Heat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • 3. Sift flour and baking power into a mixing bowl.
  • 4. Add sugar and mix well.
  • 5. Add butter to dry ingredients. Keep working it until the butter is finely mixed through.
  • 6. Beat the egg slightly and gradually add a little at a time to the flour and butter mixture.
  • 7. Add a little milk at a time as needed.
  • 8. Keep stirring until the mixture is firm but slightly moist.
  • 9. Sprinkle flour on the work bench. Turn mixture out and knead with your hands to make it smooth.
  • 10. Cut the dough into 8 pieces and roll each piece into a ball with your hands.
  • 11. Place them on the oven tray. Poke a hole in the top of each with a finger, and fill the hole with jam.
  • 12. Brush the top with the leftover milk.
  • 13. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes.

To discover more delicious recipes and learn about food from many cultures, try A to Z World Food in our Web Resources.

Want to make sure you don’t miss any of the great things we’re sharing? Sign up for our new Library Fun at Home Newsletter to stay in touch!

At-Home Challenge: Everyone Counts!

everyone counts/todos contamos

Information for the 2020 Census is being collected right now. Do you know what the Census is? It is a way of collecting information about everyone who lives in the United States to make sure everyone is counted. Information about who lives where is used to provide services in your community, like the schools, parks, and your library. There are activities and even a book that explore the Census for kids, available here.

Try this activity: Choose a few questions and keep track of the answers you get from the people who live with you, as well as from friends, family, and neighbors by phone, text, or in person from a safe distance. We did this with Library staff and have their answers below. 

kids questions and votes census chart

Here’s a trickier question: How many books do you have in your house? Can you estimate (or make a smart guess on) the number? 

It’s fun to learn more about people and see how we are similar. How can we use this information? Asking people about foods they like can help you decide what to have for dinner. Knowing the languages that people speak at home can help to make sure that information is available in those languages too. 

If you’d like to share what you learn, and see how other people in Mount Prospect answered, take a survey here.