Kids & Parents

Riot Child: Punk Rock for Tiny Tots

In high school I had blue streaked hair, a big mouth (it earned me a suspension from this library), and a serious love of punk music. I spent most of my weekends at local shows or in a friend’s garage listening to NOFX and Catch 22.

go ahead and be stompy

Now, as a mom of three, I’ve given up the blue hair and big mouth, but I still have a soft spot for hardcore punk rock.

Although the anti-authority part of punk is far less appealing to me as a parent, I do hope my children embrace the independent, DIY mentality of punk musicians. And, I won’t mind (much) if one of them ends up with a Mohawk. 

Unfortunately, punk is usually the last music genre parents think of introducing to their kids, but it shouldn’t be  -- kids truly are rebels at heart!

Luckily, the library has something for everyone; from purple haired parents to D.I.Y. enthusiasts to anyone who just wants to hear something other than the Frozen soundtrack.

Here are my punk picks:


Rockabye baby! Lullaby Renditions of the Ramones

by Jordan Lansburg

Lull your littlest to bed with instrumental arrangements of this original punk band. 



by Kimya Dawson

The name alone will be enough to hook your kids. And the songs are good enough to hook you.



by Play Date

A pop infused punk CD that focus less on rebellion and more on early learning skills (counting and letters).


Happy Punks 1 2 3 : A Counting Story

by John Seven

This is the picture book for introducing punk culture to kids. Count along with colorful punks as they hit the thrift store, share their love of music (“The Specials”), and shout and stomp their way to a local show. Mohawks and skateboards galore! 


A Rule is to Break: A Child's Guide to Anarchy

by John Seven

Where the Wild Things Are meets anti-establishment in this wildly cute book about breaking (not so serious) rules. This is an all-time favorite in our house (and the only picture book I know that contains an "Oath of Anarchy"). 


D.I.Y. Kids

by Ellen Lupton

Punk rock isn’t just about music, it’s a way of life. This book perfectly embraces the Do It Yourself attitude of punk rockers with simple craft and design ideas.


The Other F Word

This DVD isn’t for the kiddos, but parents (especially those who grew up listening to Pennywise and NOFX) will appreciate this well-done (and often funny) documentary about punk rock musicians who now have kids.

Don’t forget -- your Des Plaines Public Library card gets you five free songs each week on Freegal. Do a simple genre search (“punk”) to find new artists (always listen to a song before you share it with your kiddos) or search kid-friendly punk bands (“MXPX”).

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