I went to visit yet another Pre-K classroom yesterday morning. This time, I thought they were studying farm animals, so I prepared a farm-themed story time. Then I checked my email and learned they were working with zoo animals instead! So I quickly changed my theme. I was beyond disappointed that May I Bring a Friend? seems to be suddenly missing from my library's shelves, and even more disappointed that Bruno Munari's Zoo was checked out, but I went with my second choices, which I'll list below.
Opening Song: Hello, how are you?
This group was a bit more serious and shy than the others I've visited this month - even by the end of the hello song, they were still a bit standoffish and uncertain of me.
Song: If You'd Like to Read a Book
This song broke the ice. They all recognized the tune, and one little boy joyfully said, "Hey, those are rhyming words in that song!"
I Took My Frog to the Library by Eric A. Kimmel, illustrated by Blanche Sims (1990)
I decided not to skip the page about the card catalog this time. It didn't faze the kids in the least. Their only comment? "This book is way too short." The story also sparked an unexpected conversation about deer.
Song: I'm Going Down to the Library
This group had the best recall of the story of any class I've read it with, so singing this song was fun.
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip Stead, illustrated by Erin Stead (2010)
The kids had read this one, and all of them called out the ending well before it happened. Again, they complained that it was short. I'm not crazy about this book, and I don't think I'll bring it to any other classes.
Song: Rum Sum Sum
I was going to do a version of Book Bear, Book Bear, but I quickly realized there was no room for them to stand up and move around in their small carpeted area. So I switched to this song. A few of these very sophisticated four-year-olds said, "Oh, I did this at camp when I was little." My guess is that this was last year, but you know, three is little when you're almost five.
Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing by Judi Barrett and Ron Barrett (1970)
This book was on display right beyond the chair I sat in for my visit, and some of the kids had read it, but their teacher said not everyone had, and that they were eager to look at it. So... read it we did. And the kids laughed themselves silly, but were also gravely concerned about the state of the dress worn by the porcupine. (Oh, and at least one of them said, "All these books are short!" Note to self - this group likes long stories.)
Song: These Are My Glasses by the Laurie Berkner Band
They liked this song, and one little boy said, "Hey, my grandma knows this song!"
Goodbye Song: We Wave Goodbye Like This
I really didn't think this was my strongest story time, but the classroom teacher said I did a great job and that I should consider teaching! So that made me feel good. Next time, I will choose longer books and confirm the requested theme further in advance!