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Check It Out

Find a listing of the latest arrivals of books, audio and video items at the Wauwatosa Library, as well as information on upcoming events and staff suggestions for timely information you can use every day on the library's blog.

Under the Stars

“Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” is one of the most popular nursery rhymes in the English language.  The melody comes from an old French song, “Ah! Vous dirai-je, Maman”, in which a young boy complains to his mother about his father’s high expectations.  The words are from an English poem by Jane Taylor called “The Star”.  Mozart wrote 12 variations on this tune. 

The stars have fascinated human beings since ancient times.  Families had little entertainment at night before the invention of candles and oil lamps.   Gazing at the stars and creating stories about them is a cross-cultural phenomenon.  Many myths explain the existence of constellations by telling us that the gods placed people in the sky to keep them safe or as a reward for exceptional behavior. 

Stories with star rewards existed long before school children hoped to see stars on their homework and test papers.  The good sister receives a golden star on her forehead in the Italian fairy tale, “The Colony of Cats”, from the Crimson Fairy Book edited by Andrew Lang.  Two Hispanic versions, Little Gold Star retold by Robert D. San Souci and Estrellita de Oro/Little Gold Star retold by Joe Hayes, also have the good sister receiving a gold star on her forehead. 

The Wauwatosa Children’s Librarians will present an “Under the Stars Family Story Night” on Wednesday, April 22nd and Thursday, April 23rd from 6:30 – 7:00 pm at the Wauwatosa Public Library.   This program of stories and rhymes is most appropriate for families with children ages 3 and older.  For more information or to register, please call the Wauwatosa Children's Library at 414-471-8486.                 

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