Miss Katie's Recommended Books
- Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen
A series of animals climbs into a rowboat, and the reader is asked on each page to guess who might have sunk the boat. There aren't very many books about sinking, but this one is a great introduction to the concept, and while I doubt every child in the room would get it on the first reading, the animal characters and the fact that the book addresses the kids directly would be enough to keep them interested. I think it's also fun to listen to kids' theories about who sank the boat.
- 10 Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle
This book is based on a true story, and it tells what happens to ten rubber ducks when they fall off their ship and into the ocean. It's a great preschool book because Eric Carle is the illustrator, it involves counting, and it involves an animal familiar to most kids under five. I also think kids tend to know Eric Carle's books about bugs, but not many of his others, so this is a chance to give one of the lesser-known titles some attention.
- The Tub People by Pam Conrad
Most kids first encounter the concepts of sinking and floating in the bathtub, where they have probably played with toys at some point. This book focuses on a whole family of small wooden figures who live along the edge of the bathtub. When Tub Child is sucked down the drain, his parents are sure they will never see him again, until a plumber comes to save the day. Sinking and floating don't figure heavily into the plot, but the subject matter of the story in general should get the kids talking about their own bathtime experiences that relate to this theme.
Other Possible Books
- Little Tug by Stephen Savage
- The Story About Ping by Marjorie Flack
- Sail Away by Donald Crews
- What Floats in a Moat? by Lynne Berry
- Louise, the Adventures of a Chicken by Kate DiCamillo
- The Toy Boat by Randall de Seve
- Duck Dunks by Lynne Berry
- Daisy Comes Home by Jan Brett
- Sink or Swim by Valerie Coulman
- The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen
- Song: Five Little Ducks
Kids love this song, and it's a perfect one to sing after reading 10 Little Rubber Ducks, or any duck-themed book. This is especially useful with large groups, as the quacking gets a lot of their excess energy out between books.
- Song: Row, Row, Row Your Boat
This song is well-known, and most likely to encourage adult participation. It's also a good one to use if your preschool groups tend to skew young or include many toddler siblings.
- Flannel Board Song: Five Pirates in a Boat
You can sing the original version of this song, Eight Rowers in a Boat, or make it a bit more preschool-friendly by turning it into a flannel board with pirates! Find a diverse array of pirates at mycutegraphics.com, and use a coloring sheet as a pattern for a boat.
- Song with Picture Props: Sailing Out to Sea
Practice number or color identification with this piggyback song I came up with based on Bumpin' Up and Down in My Little Red Wagon. I used cardboard signs, but you could also adapt this one to the flannel board.
- Song: Swimming, Swimming
I remembered this song from Girl Scouts and looked up the lyrics again. Have the kids act out the different strokes and speed up a little bit with each verse until everyone collapses into a giggling heap.
- Experiment: Sink or Float Crayons
This simple experiment comparing the bouyancy of crayons of two brands comes from a book published by Scholastic entitled Teaching Science with Favorite Picture Books. Though it is designed to accompany an early elementary lesson on Stone Soup, it would work just as well on its own. Specific instructions can be found in the Google Books preview below.