Thursday, June 16, 2011

Pre-K Class Visit, 6/16

What an adorable group of kids! We have an elementary school right next door, but because we have been under construction, and they have also been under construction, we haven't quite had the chance to collaborate as we would have liked. But this teacher brought her Pre-K kids over on this, their second to last day of school, to have a little story time. And it was so much fun!

Here is what we did.

Song: Seven Continents on our Globe
Every child wanted to tell me every country everyone in their family had ever visited, but I shortened the conversation a bit by asking them to raise a hand if someone they knew had been to this or that continent. When they started interrupting me to tell me more than one relative, I just asked them to put up two hands. Even their teacher seemed to think that was a wise way to handle it. I patted myself on the back a little bit for that one!

Book: Papa, Do You Love Me? by Barbara Joosse, illustrated by Barbara Lavallee (2005)This one was recycled from this morning's story time. A very astute little boy in the front row got about halfway through this story and then said, "This boy worries about everything!" They all also thought the author's last name was hilarious. 

Song: Rum Sum Sum

Roughly half the class knew this song, so I asked them to sing loud and help their friends. It got the entire group singing along and they really learned the song quickly.

Book: Hunwick's Egg by Mem Fox, illustrated by Pamela Lofts (2005)
I love Mem Fox, and this book was just about perfect for this age group. Hunwick finds an egg, and befriends it, but his friends worry it will never hatch. I asked the kids to guess what kind of animal Hunwick might be (he's a bandicoot), and then to guess at what might be in his egg - and to my surprise, they actually responded! I'm definitely going to recycle this one for a Tales for Fours and Fives session - maybe next week.

Song: Taba Naba by The Wiggles from (It's a Wiggly Wiggly World)
By far, this group had the most success with this song - and the least frustration. I presented it differently this time, practicing the motions ahead of time, and gave a suggestion for which motions to make if they got stuck. It was great fun, and they were so cute, wiggling their little hips!

Tales for Fours and Fives, 6/16

Another day, another learning curve. It occurs to me, now that I've done four story times for this age group (including class visits), that my repertoire for this age is very, very limited. I've worked so hard on learning how to read and sing with babies and toddlers, but I haven't really spent much time with kids over the age of three. And though today's session went very well, and my attendance doubled (3 last week, 7 this week), I find myself uncertain about where to go from here. And I need to figure it out soon, because school's out next week!

One thing I know I'll be using is Anna's delightful secret weapon song, The Watermelon Song, but beyond that, I need pre-K and K suggestions! I'll be digging into my favorite blogs for more ideas later today, but in the meantime, here's what I did this morning:

Opening Song: Hello, how are you?

Song: Seven Continents on our Globe

Book: Earthdance by Joanne Ryder, illustrated by Norman Gorbaty (1999)
Very fitting for the summer reading theme, this book imagines what it would be like to be the Earth, spinning in space, crawling with animals and people, and filled with mystery. The text is highly poetic, with some instances of concrete poetry (icebergs that crack, for example), and the illustrations are very abstract, but the oversized pages and interesting colors drew me right in, and though the kids were very quiet, I think the story spoke to them on some level, too.

Song: Rum Sum Sum

Book: Papa, Do You Love Me? by Barbara Joosse, illustrated by Barbara Lavallee (2005)
This is a story set in Africa, and featuring the Masaai culture. A father answers his son's many questions about the depth and breadth of his love. This book introduces a lot of African vocabulary, but also speaks to the universality of a father's love. The boys in this audience especially liked the lion, and the father's promise to scare him off with his shield and spear.

Song: Boots by The Laurie Berkner Band (from Victor Vito)

Book: Perfect Square by Michael Hall (2011)
A perfect square faces adversity in the form of being poked full of holes, shredded, cut into strips, and shattered, but each time it makes the best of the situation by making something new out of its pieces. This book can be extrapolated in a lot of ways, and lends itself to a wonderful craft project (which I didn't do, but any library easily could.)

Song: Taba Naba by The Wiggles from (It's a Wiggly Wiggly World) 

Song: Turn Around by Hap Palmer (from Getting to Know Myself)

Goodbye Song: Skinnamarink

Only two more story times this week - a Pre-K class visit this afternoon, and baby lap time tomorrow. Then I get three days to relax before the next round!

8 Kids' Books About Dads

by Hallie Durand, illustrated by Tony Fucile
2011 | 40 pages | Picture Book
Mitchell, who hates going to bed, is allowed to use his father as an imaginary vehicle in order to make bedtime more fun. (Read about my story time experience with this book here.)

by David Ezra Stein
2010 | 40 pages | Picture Book
Chicken, an enthusiastic little girl, can't contain her excitement when her father reads to her, and keeps interrupting with suggestions to help characters in danger. (Read my review of this book here.)

by Dr. Seuss
1963 | 72 pages | Easy Reader
Dr. Seuss teaches kids to read using wild and wonderful combinations of rhyming words, including that famous sentence, hop on pop, which encourages kids everywhere to jump on their fathers' stomachs.

 Alvin Ho series
by Lenore Look, illustrated by LeUyen Pham
2008 - present | Chapter Books 
Alvin is afraid of many things, but his father still encourages him to always be a gentleman. (Read my review of Alvin Ho: Allergic to Birthday Parties, Science Projects, and Other Man-made Catastrophes

 Mallory McDonald series
by Laurie Friedman
2004 - present | Chapter Books
When Mallory has problems, she visits the wish pond in her neighborhood to find comfort - Dad is usually the one who finds her there and helps her sort out whatever is wrong. (Read my review of Mallory's Guide to Boys, Brothers, Dads, and Dogs here.)

by Anne Warren Smith
2003; 2011 | 112 pages | Chapter Book
Katie worries that people will judge her for not having a mother, but her father turns out to make a wonderful single dad. (Read my review of this book here.)

by Kate DiCamillo
2001 | 192 pages | Middle Grade
With the help of a smiling stray dog, India Opal Buloni and her preacher father come to terms with the loss of Opal's mother, who abandoned the family.

by Susan Taylor Brown
2006 | 170 pages | Young Adult Novel in Verse
After her mother leaves her father, Rachel struggles to form a relationship with her dad, who has shut down in the absence of his wife.
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