Virtual Read Aloud With Author Kate Messner

Children’s author Kate Messner has written over 35 books on many science and nature topics, easy readers, picture books, and mysteries. On her website, the former classroom teacher and well-known author includes:

  • Video clips of her reading aloud from many of her books. Videos include her reading from Over and Under the Snow, The Next President, and a chance to hear her latest, which will come out in August; Over and Under the Rainforest.
  • Activity tips for kids following the readings, which mainly involve a single question from the book.
  • Video clips of other well-known authors reading from their books aloud, including Grace Lin and Nikki Grimes.
  • Resources with mini lessons for different grade levels.

You can listen to Messner reading her picture book, The Brilliant Deep: Rebuilding the World’s Coral Reefs, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe. It’s also available on hoopla to borrow as an ebook. She tells the true story of how a young boy who loved coral reefs became an adult who devised a method to transplant coral to create new colonies on devastated sites where corals have died. Ken Nedimeyer grew up near Florida’s coral reefs and became a pioneer in the techniques of grafting stag coral to create new coral colonies. The illustrations are as intense in coloring as the corals. The story is geared to ages 4-7, and adds simple descriptions for young readers of how corals grow.

Messner includes a link to the Coral Restoration website, which details the threats facing coral reefs worldwide. There is also a link to the NASA Climate Kids site, which helps kids learn what they can do to help the oceans.

LeVar Burton Reads YA on Wednesdays

With everyone staying home and practicing social distancing, more and more authors and celebrities are stepping up to provide storytimes in the form of live streams to the social media platform of their choice. Most of these livestreams focus on children’s stories and children’s books. One celebrity, however, chose to spread his read-alouds across different age groups and interests. 

LeVar Burton, host of the book podcast LeVar Burton Reads, has taken to Twitter on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays to livestream storytimes for each age group. Mondays for children, Wednesdays for YA, and Fridays for adults. 

So sit back and enjoy a storytime for teens on Wednesdays at 6:00 pm on LeVar Burton’s Twitter, and even interact with other listeners if you have a Twitter account.

Interested in more YA books? Browse the library’s teen e-collections on hoopla and Overdrive, or on Overdrive’s Libby app!