Local organizations offer events to celebrate Screen Free Week and Children's Book Week

Two complementary observances this week will encourage families to disengage from digital devices and focus on reading and other sometimes-neglected activities. 

Local education organizations, libraries and Homewood's book store have planned a number of activities to help celebrate Screen Free Week and Children's Book Week this week, April 29 through May 5.

According to screenfree.org, the annual observance is an "invitation to play, explore, and rediscover the joys of life beyond aid-supported screens ... for seven days of fun, connection and discovery."

Screen Free Week events at Homewood Public Library, 17917 Dixie Highway:
  • Monday, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. — Family Board Game Night. All ages. "These aren't your typical board games, unless you're a fan of Catan or Pandemic. No idea what those are? Come find out!" Register.
  • Tuesday, 4 to 5:30 p.m. — Library Scavenger Hunt. For kids. Find things in the library. Completed lists will earn a prize. Register.
  • Wednesday, 4 to 6 p.m. — Short  Story Month. "Create a short story based on an image. All short stories will be posted in the library next to their images." Register.
  • Thursday, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. — Tech Take Apart. For kids. "What's inside that old VCR? Or computer? Or ancient radio? All ages are invited to come take things apart - and NOT get in trouble." Register.
  • Friday, 1 to 4:30 p.m. — Beat the Librarian — Trivial Pursuit. For kids. "You, the public, play as one player. We, the staff, play as the other player. Who will win - without using the internet - in this epic trivia showdown? Stop by at any time and take your turn." Register
  • Saturday, 11 a.m. — Galactic Engineering. "Stop by the Makery before the May the Fourth party to build your own droids." All ages.
    1 to 4 p.m. — May the Fourth Be With You. Annual Star Wars-themed bash with a costume contest and prizes, recycled droid building, crafts, games and trivia. All ages.
  • Sunday, 1 to 3 p.m. — Play On! A Musical Instrument Petting Zoo. With Melody Mart instructors on hand, try out a range of instruments, including guitar, mandolin, piano, violin, banjo, rainstick and percussion. For kids.
Events at Flossmoor Public Library, 1000 Sterling Ave., include:
  • Monday, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. — Anime-zing Mondays. Discover how big the world of anime and manga really is while also exploring Japanese culture. For kids in sixth through 12th grade.
  • Tuesday, 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. — Tuesday Tales. Stories, songs and a fun craft project. For ages 3 to 5 (pre-K).
  • Wednesday, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. — Kids Who Care." Join other kids and teens in making cards for those who need a smile or kind word." For ages 5 and up.
  • Thursday, 10:30 to 11 a.m. — Read, Play, & Grow!: A Storytime for Babies and Toddlers. Ages 0-4.

One screen-free activity will benefit Homewood PTA. 
  Click above for a larger

White Castle at 18250 S. Halsted St. in Homewood is hosting a community night on Monday from 5 to 8 p.m., when 15 percent of the proceeds will go to the organization. Patrons need to bring in a copy of the event flyer to receive the discount.

Children's Book Week, celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, "is the annual celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading."

Bookie's Book Store at 2015 Ridge Road in Homewood is planning a series of author appearances to celebrate Children's Book Week.
  • Monday, 4 p.m. — Sharon Cruikshank, author of "Come on, Sam," "The Fall" and "Little Spider's Journey.” For ages 3 to 8.
  • Tuesday, 4 p.m. — Becky Cattie, author of "I Used to Be Famous," "I am Famous" and "Shark Nate-O." For ages 3 to 8.
  • Wednesday, 4 p.m. — Songju Daemicke, author of "Cao Chong Weighs an Elephant" and "A Case of Sense." For ages 4 to 8.
  • Thursday, 11 a.m. — Heidi Roemer, author of "Peekity Boo! What YOU Can Do!" For ages 0 to 3.
    4 p.m. — Kathleen Doherty, author of "Don't Feed the Bear." For ages 3 to 8.
  • Friday, 4 p.m. — Bibi Belford, author of "Another D for Deedee," "Canned and Crushed" and "Crossing the Line." For ages 8 to 12.
  • Saturday, 11 a.m. — Marlene Brill, author of "Picture Girl," "Diary of a Drummer Boy" and "Dolores Huerta Stands Strong." For ages 5 to 12.
    2 p.m. — Claire Hartfield, author  of "A Few Red Drops." For ages 8 and up.
  • Sunday, noon — Sarah Parisis, author of "The Ultimate Kids' Adventure Guide to Chicago." 
    1 p.m. — Sit, Stay, Read. Read with dogs. For all ages.
    1:30 p.m. — Tracy Watland, author of "The Kindness Can." for ages 3 to 8.
    3 p.m. — Katie McElligot, author of "Nothing Scary with Harry." For ages 0-3.

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