Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas: Pre-K and Family Storytime

I have accumulated just too many fun Christmas books, flannels, music, and activities over the years!  I found myself agonizing over what to do and what to not do in storytime today.  Here are some of the winners from today's Pre-K and Evening Family Storytime:


Books I used today:
Jingle Jingle by Nicola Smee.  This is becoming one of my favorites!  I (sometimes with co-worker help) ring bells and we all chime in with, "Jingle jingle, Jingle, jingle" each time the text calls for some jingling.  As they go down the hill, we jingle faster and faster and faster and FASTER!
Who Will Guide My Sleigh Tonight? by Jerry Pallotta. Santa Claus has a big job to do and he tries out lots of animals until he discovers reindeer!
Dinosaur Christmas by Jerry Pallotta. Santa Claus reminisces about "the good old days" when dinosaurs pulled his sleigh.
Bear Stays up For Christmas by Karma Wilson. Bear's friends are determined to keep Bear away for Christmas so they wake him up and fill his day and night with lots of fun!
Music / Movement:

"Kris Kringle's Jingle Bell Band" (Listen here)
The morning group of kids all picked an instrument and we paraded around the library.  I don't know if parents love getting up and walking around, but the kids, staff, and library customers sure do! 

"Reindeer Pokey"
I found a recorded version of this song that has all the little reindeer dancing their antlers, hooves, noses, tails, and reindeer bodies.  I'm sure I can find the album/artist I downloaded from - just ask if you want me to find it!
"The Dancing Christmas Tree" 
You have to watch this video.  Kids of all ages go nuts over it!  Kids dance with the Christmas Tree.
 "Santa's New Suit"

I really want to credit who shared this idea, but I'm just not sure anymore.  Sorry!
It may be a spin off of Laura Rader's Santa's New SuitRecipes for Reading created a flannel for this book.

 The story I told starts with Santa trying on his suit a couple days before Christmas Eve:
Oh no!  It is dirty with last year's chimney soot!:
Santa calls, "Ohh, Elllves!" (It's funny when the kids cup their hands around their mouths and call the elves with Santa).  "Please wash my suit."  So the elves wash it in really hot water and put it in the drier on really high heat.  Oh no!  It shrinks!:

"Ohh, Elllves!"  Santa asks for their help two more times, but they just can't find any red fabric:
What's this?  A gift from busy Mrs. Claus?:
 She made the perfect suit for Santa!"

"Rudolph, Rudolph":
I think everyone knows how this flannel goes:
Rudolph, Rudolph
What will you do
You can't guide Santa's sleigh
If your nose is blue
Rudolph, Rudolph
The children are in bed
I know you are ready now
Because your nose is red

I knew I wouldn't have time to actually play this game in storytime, so we did one verse and then I sent the kids home with this so they could play with their adult at home:
"Santa's Hat"
Which hat is Santa's?

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wiggle Worms - Getting Snowy

Mr. Bear is feeling festive in his elf hat and I'm rocking my new infinity scarf crafted by one of my sweet storytime mamas
Book:  Jingle-Jingle by Nicola Smee.  This is a really fun book to read one-on-one, but I like to read it in groups too.  Every time I shake the bells, everyone chimes in saying, "Jingle -jingle, Jingle-jingle" with me (I definately add a few "jingles").
Letter of the Day: Ss
Action Rhyme: Five Little Snowmen
Five little snowmen standing in a row (stand up, hold up 5 fingers)
Each with a hat (touch head)
And a big red bow (make bow in front of neck)
The sun came out and stayed all day (hold arms above head)
And one little snowman melted away (wiggle body while melting "down")
....Four, Three, Two, One
I got these pre-assembled snowmen from Hobby Lobby for $6.50 a piece (discounted price) back in October.  They are about a foot tall and made of sparkly foam balls.  Everything is attached by Velcro or straight pins so I could use these snowmen for other props if I wanted.

Movement / Music (CD):  "Roll, Roll, Roll Your Ball"
We pretended these plus balls were snowballs:
 This song encourages kids to roll, bounce, pass, toss, and catch their balls:

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Soup! Pre-K and Family Storytime

It is finally cold enough to do a soup storytime in Arizona.  I even hear it will be 36 degrees tonight.  Hmmm I wonder how many families will brave the "cold" and come to evening Family Storytime this evening....

Pre-K Storytime:
44 kids
4 siblings
36 adults


Duck Soup by Jackie Urbanovic.  Maxwell Duck is perfecting his own soup recipe and goes into his garden to pick some herbs.  When his friends find a feather in the soup (really a bay leaf), they fear he has fallen in.
While I read, my co-worker played the parts of the various animals including Max spicing up his soup and his friends' rescue methods.

Soup for One by Ethan Long.   A little fly who anticipates enjoying a big bowl of soup is unexpectedly joined by 9 other bugs.

I used a punch bowl stuffed with red butcher paper to bring this book to life.

These little bugs are left over Summer Reading Prizes.  My enterprising Librarian self loves holding onto goodies like these because I always find a fun way to use them in programs.

As the bugs exit the soup (on account of the lizard), my co-worker tossed them humorously up in the air behind her!  Finally a spider (puppet) swoops in for the last few drops of soup.

Storytiming does a cute flannel version of this book.  

Letter(s) of the Day:

We used jump ropes (also old leftover SRP prizes) to spell out the letters S, O, U, P.  Honestly, it was a bit too crazy with 45 kids and I should have used my common sense and abandoned the activity.  Oh well.

Look at this clever cutie!
Music:  "I Feel Crazy so I Jump in the Soup" by Laurie Berkner
Listen here

We made round soup bowls with the jump ropes to sing this song:

I feel crazy so I jump in the soup X3
I jump jump jump in the soup


Sitting in their soup and ready for another story:

The soup is boiling up (bubble hands)
The soup is boiling up (bubble hands)
Stir it slow, around we go (stir)
The soup is boiling up (throw hands and feet UP or pop up)

I added some veggies to our soup as we sang the rhyme the few times.

I let the evening Family Storytime kiddos toss letter beanbags into the soup to make alphabet soup.  This group was much smaller and manageable.  It would NOT have worked in the morning group.

Miss Erica (my fabulously awesome co-worker) dressed as a Campbell's soup can:

Fun (literacy skill building) Soup Videos to Watch at Home:

Chicken Soup with Rice - Do you remember this book for your childhood??!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Grayden and his Rudolph

Just because I haven't posted a picture of my little guy in a a while.....
Here he is reading with his newly-stuffed (Build a Bear) Rudolph.  The Rudolph book he's reading is very long, so he mostly just likes to find the Rudolph on every page and point to his nose.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Thanksgiving: Pre-K and Family Storytime

We talked briefly about being thankful and about what makes Thanksgiving fun! 

*I am thankful for my co-workers who help me with props and puppets so that stories really come to life:

Me (Miss Tara)              Lesley                        Erica


Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson.  Bear thanks his friends for bringing food to his dinner party.

Props for Bear Says Thanks:

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Alison Jackson.  You know how it goes!

I really, really shortened this book by skipping the repetitious text and the part about dieing.  My co-worker* assembled the flannel pieces as I read.  The different sized skirts are added to the old lady as she gets bigger and bigger.

I'm a Turkey by Jim Arnosky.  I love this book and the fact that Scholastic provides a free MP3 download of Jim Arnosky's recorded "spoken word song".  (Not in our catalog)

See book here
Listen to recording here

Game:  Mouse View

We pretended to be little mice looking at Thanksgiving foods close up and had to guess what they were.

Music / Movement:

CD:  "Turkey Dance" (not in our catalog)

Move your elbows to the turkey dance
Move your elbows to the turkey dance
Stomp your feet and shout, "Hooray!"
It's Thanksgiving Day!

... hips
... knees
... head
... whole body

CD:  "Wobble, Wobble, Wobble" (not in our catalog)

Wobble, wobble, wobble goes the turkey
Gobble, gobble, gobble's what he says
Turkeys spread their feathers on Thanksgiving Day
And then they run (FLY)** away

**I sing FLY loudly to encourage kids to flap their wings rather than run!

Colorful scareves make the kids a bunch of colorful turkeys!


"The Turkey Trot"

Oh, you turkey to the left
You turkey to the right
You heel, toe, heel, toe
and scratch with all your might

You flap your turkey wings
While your head goes bobble, bobble, bobble
Then you turn around and say,
"Gobble, gobble, gobble!"

Game with flannel turkeys: 

This is a rhyming game I came up with while using the flannel turkeys I made for the kids to hold (and then give back). I made about 50 of them and use them every year so it was worth the time to make them.  The kids love them!

 Olivia holding a turkey after storytime:
"Bibbity Boppity Boo: A turkey sat on my shoe"

... bed / head
... binger / finger
... etc.

Flannel: Turkey wore his feather

Poor turkey has no feathers!  (Perceptive children also point out that he has no feet LOL).  We sang the song below as I added feathers.

Turkey wore his red feather, (pat knees)
red feather, red feather (pat knees)
Turkey wore his red feather (pat knees)
And flapped his wings (flap)

... red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple ...
I let some groups pick a feather to hold up when we got to their color.  It certainly wasn't essential and could easily be a distraction in some groups.
Some Pre-K kids posing with their feathers:

 A bit blurry, but how great is the evening Family Storytime group?  I love how all the adults and kids get fully engaged in every activity!