Thanksgiving Craft
and Snacktivity
Tuesday, November 22 at 1pm


Kids in grades K-5 are welcome to join us after the half-day at school for some turkey-themed activities. We’ll create a centerpieces for our holiday tables, make a delicious treat to enjoy, and play some games. Registration is required and space is limited.


Drop-In Playdates

Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.
November 29, 30, December 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21


Children ages 0-5 and their caregivers are invited to join us on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings in late November and early December from 10:30-11:30 for an hour of socialization and open play with our story room toys.
No registration is required.


Crafty Thursdays

Thursdays at 3:30 p.m. 

December 1, 8, 15

Grades K-5


Join us for some no-rules creative crafting in the Wagner Room. There will be plenty of fun supplies and the only limit on what you can create is your own imagination! This is a drop-in program and no registration is required.  

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Family Craft Night: Gingerbread Houses

Wednesday, December 7 at 6:30 p.m.

Use your imagination to create a unique and tasty house to bring home with you using graham crackers, frosting and other delicious supplies. This activity has steps that are appropriate for all ages, but a parent or guardian must be with children to help with supervision. Registration is required and space is limited.


Celebrate Hanukkah!

Tuesday, December 13 at 4:00 p.m.



You are invited to celebrate Hanukkah in this program led by Portland residents Barbara Sequenzia and Liz Hibino. Whether you actively celebrate Hanukkah or just want to learn more about this holiday, you are invited to join us for stories, songs, games and some delicious latkes.This program is geared towards kids in grades K-3, but all are  welcome. Registration is required.

Meet and Greet with the Snow Sisters
Tuesday, December 27 at 11:00 a.m.

Calling all fans of Elsa and Anna!


The Snow Sisters will be visiting the Portland
Library for a morning of songs, games, crafts and plenty of photo opportunities.


Registration is  required and space is limited.


Winter Storytimes 

Registration is required and can be done by calling the library at 860-342-6770 or registering through our library calendar. Registration begins on Monday, December 19.


Preschool Storytime
Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m.

January 10, 17, 24, 31, February 7, 14, 21 and 28


Join us in our Wagner Room for stories, songs, and rhymes that encourage literacy and social skills and help get your preschooler prepared for kindergarten. We will offer a craft related to the weekly theme at the end of the program that can be done at the library or brought home.


Storytime for Toddlers and Tots:
Mother Goose on the Loose
Wednesdays at 10:15 a.m. or 11:15 a.m.
January 11, 18, 25, February 1, 8, 15, 22, March 1

Mother Goose on the Loose, a fun-filled interactive session for our youngest patrons, uses rhymes, a
story, songs, puppets, scarves, and more to stimulate the learning process of babies and toddlers. Two sessions will be offered each Wednesday to keep group sizes small and interactions personalized.

New Storywalk® at Riverfront Park

Check out the new StoryWalk® at Riverfront Park. The StoryWalk® concept was created as a way for people of all ages to combine physical activity with books and to help build children's interest in reading while encouraging healthy activity for all. The featured book for fall is Duck on a Bike by David Shannon. 


2023 Nutmeg Nominees Announced

The 2023 Nutmeg nominees were announced on May 1. Below is the list of nominees in each category. We have several copies of each book at the library, and many are
available to borrow as downloadable e-books through the Overdrive and Hoopla links on our library website. The winners of the 2022 Nutmeg Awards will be announced on May 15.

The Nutmeg Book Award encourages children in grades 2-12 to read quality literature and to choose their favorite from a list of ten (fifteen elementary) nominated titles. The award is jointly sponsored by the Connecticut Library Association (CLA) and the Connecticut Association of School Librarians (CASL). Nominees are selected by a committee of students, school librarians and public librarians around the state.

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Congratulations to the 2022 Nutmeg Award winners!

Elementary: InvestiGATORS by John Patrick Green
Intermediate: Wink by Rob Harrell

Reading Lists

Not sure what to read next? Check out these book lists for some new ideas.

Adventures for Children

Books for Animal Lovers in Grades 3-5
Character Counts: Picture Books about Kindness and Caring
Diary of a Wimpy Kid Readalikes
Historical Fiction for Children
Mysteries for Children
Ready for School

Scary Stories for Kids
Science Fiction for Children

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1000 Books Before Kindergarten


Raise a reader! 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is a national reading initiative that encourages parents and caregivers to provide positive, nurturing early experiences by reading aloud daily to their children from birth to age five. Reading to children builds important vocabulary and language skills that are needed for kindergarten. We invite you to participate in this exciting, free program open to children birth to age five.

How long will it take to read 1,000 books? This is a self-paced program that depends on how often you read together. Reading three books together a night—approximately 15 minutes—will mean you will have read 1,095 at the end of one year.

Come into the library and pick up your 1,000 Books Before Kindergartenwelcome packet in the children’s department.

Thank you to the Friends of the Portland Library for funding this program. 


Not able to come to the library but want to get started on your next reading journal? Print them out here!

Books 1-100

Books 101-250

Books 251-500

Books 501-750

Books 751-1,000

Computers in the Children's Area


Early Literacy Computer Station Added

In September 2014, the Youth Services Department added an AWE Early Literacy Computer Station to its list of services. Stocked with more than 40 games that build skills in the areas of reading, words and phonics; science and nature; math and problem solving; reference; music and arts; writing and computer skills; and social studies and geography, this colorful touch-screen computer is great for kids between the ages of 2-8. Users may sign up at the children’s reference desk to use the computer.


Portland Library Computer Information

We have two computers with Internet access in the Children's Department that can be used by patrons under the age of 11. Only children or others accompanied by children are allowed to use these computers. 

Please note the following when using the computers:


  • Parents and guardians will have to sign a Public Computer Procedures form the first time their child uses a computer.

  • If others are waiting, use is restricted to 30 minutes per user. 

  • There is filtering software on the computers in the Children's Department. 

  • Please, no eating or drinking at the computer. 

  • Our printing rates are as follows: Each user is allowed two free black and white pages. Additional pages are $.15 per page. Color copies are always $.50 per page. 


Recommended Websites for Children: 

BookFlix (Portland Library database subscription, requires library card number)

Cool Math Games

Fun Brain

Highlights Kids

Lego Play Zone

Nat Geo Kids

Scholastic Go! (Portland Library database subscription, requires library card number)

Homework Help

School Websites:

Valley View School

Gildersleeve School

Brownstone Intermediate School


Discovery Education

DK FindOut!: This secure search engine from published DK has information for young children on many different subjects. 

Math and Science:


Math Baseball

HowStuffWorks.com: Learn how thousands of things work

NeoK-12:  Fun videos and lessons on science subjects

Social Studies:

Social Studies for Kids

Social Studies Games: for younger children

Scholastic News Online

English and Spelling: