Postcards at the Neighborhood Flea!


My table at the Neighborhood Flea, with postcards and books about postcards.


Can you spy postcards, a green marker, and the “L” temporary tattoo?

This Sunday I had the distinct pleasure of representing the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh at the Neighborhood Flea, a curated flea-type market that runs from April to October in the Strip District.

I took vintage postcards along with all the regular outreach paraphernalia (tent, table, chairs, library branch calendars, flyers, and the all important CLP “L” temporary tattoo.) I met people from neighborhoods all over Pittsburgh, as well as folks from Latrobe, Johnstown, Manhattan, and Connecticut.

Why postcards? Over the summer, I did a program with sticker passports and postcards and iPads, using the Children of the World by Peter Guttman app by Banzai Labs. I bought vintage postcards from the Pittsburgh Center for Creative Reuse. Each child got one sticker “passport” and two postcards. You can get sticker passports at Oriental Trading. We talked about what a postcard is used for  and why you would need a passport.

In the library programs with school children, I let the children play with sticker passports while I walked around with the iPad and asked to see their postcards. We’d find the red pin closest to the location of the postcard (no pictures from Pittsburgh, WHAT?) and the children would touch the iPad so we could look at pictures of children around the world.

What books did I use? It varied. For the first program, I used Toot and Puddle (which features postcards from one friend traveling the world to the other friend doing fun things at home) as my read aloud and atlases and the Children Just Like Me books by Dorling Kindersley as supplemental books for the children to look at. For the second program, I raided our folktales area and used The Bremen Town Musicians as the read aloud book, and put world folk tales on each table for the children to look at during the program. I also read With a Friend by Your Side which has pictures of children around the world doing things together.

You and your children can explore the fun of travel and the wonder of world cultures without leaving home. Check out one of these excellent books to start your own adventures in reading!


-Suzi, CLP- Downtown & Business

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