Friday, January 20, 2012

Baby/Toddler Lap Time, 1/20/12

If there were 70 children at this story time, I would not be surprised. I counted about 60, but they're always moving around and there were some people who didn't fit into the room, so I easily could have missed some.  It was a HUGE group, and I have to admit, it was somewhat intimidating. But I didn't let it get to me too much, since this is traditionally a very good group. I just went with my usual routine, and it went quite well. I don't have time to make any commentary right now, as I have a cart of books to shelve and various other tasks waiting for me, but here is a quick list of what we did.

Opening Song: Hello, how are you? 

Rhyme: This is Big, Big, Big

Rhyme: Wiggle Fingers

Book: Let's Say Hi to Friends Who Fly! by Mo Willems (2010)
I added in some animal sounds to get the crowd involved. Worked like a charm!

Song: Did You Ever See a Penguin? 

Song: Bumpin' Up and Down on My Little Blue Sled 

Book: School Bus by Donald Crews (1984)

Song: The Wheels on the Bus (a cappella)

Song: I'm a Little Teapot

Song: Shake My Sillies Out

Song: There's a Little Wheel a-Turnin' in my Heart 

Flannel Board Rhyme: Five Little Snowflakes Falling All Together
Two things: 1. God bless the one dad who said the entire rhyme with me. 2. One little snowflake can't fall "all together." Major flaw in my rhyme! 

Song: If You're Happy and You Know It (a cappella)

Song: Itsy Bitsy Spider (a cappella)

Song: One Little Finger (a cappella)

Goodbye Song: We Wave Goodbye Like This

Let's All Go to the Circus! After School Program, 1/19/12

Yesterday was National Popcorn Day. Initially I wanted to have a popcorn day story time, but that quickly proved impossible (seriously, there are no books!), so then I opted to do a circus story time instead. And yes, there are plenty of books about the circus, but not so many rhymes, songs, or activities that work with a  circus theme. So I wrote my own. And that was mostly okay, except that my group didn't really participate very much. I did get some older kids - first graders - because of the promise of popcorn at the end of the program. (Our craft was popcorn bags.) But something still felt off. Never again for this theme. I'm already working on making my themes more general for Spring.

Opening Song: Roll Your Hands
I had great luck with this song during my class visits these past two weeks, so decided to stick with it. It went pretty well, though I think the first graders could have done something more complicated. 

Book: Circus by Lois Ehlert
I don't enjoy Lois Ehlert, but I tried so hard to show enthusiasm for this book anyway. Alas, the room fell silent. 

Action Rhyme: Under the Big Top 
I wrote this less than an hour before the program started. Creative juices flow so well at the last minute!

Book: Tree Ring Circus by Adam Rex (2006)
This book is a lot like Stuck. And Stuck is better.

Action Rhyme: Circus Clown, Circus Clown
I wrote this one based on Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear Turn Around. 

Book: Olivia Saves the Circus by Ian Falconer (1994)
This book is strangely plotted and doesn't have a very satisfying ending.  I chose it for the popular character, but wished I had skipped it.

Book: You See A Circus, I See... by Mike Downs, illustrated by Anik McGrory (2005)
I loved this book a lot, but the kids didn't "get" the entire gimmick. There aren't enough cues in the text or illustrations to help the  reader understand that the circus persona and the true identity underneath are connected in any way. A lot of the kids thought they were each separate people, instead of two sides of the same person. I think for that reason it would have worked better one-on-one. But it's also a nice read-alike for The Little Bit Scary People by Emily Jenkins, which is a favorite of mine. 

We didn't sing a goodbye song. Instead, I handed out popcorn. I had planned on doing a popcorn action rhyme, but decided it wasn't worth subjecting them to anymore torture. They wanted their popcorn, so that's what they got!

Flannel Friday: Winter Post #2: Snowflakes

Last week, I shared my penguin flannel board ideas. This week I'm talking about snowflakes!

All of my snowflakes came from, with maybe one exception. I tried to abide by that whole "no two snowflakes are alike" philosophy and printed five different ones.

I had some trouble finding a rhyme or song I really liked, so I've been trying to come up with something of my own. This is what I ended up with:

Five little snowflakes falling all together.
Five little snowflakes making wintry weather.
One little snowflake went astray,
fell to the ground, and melted away.
(Repeat, counting down to zero)

I don't love it like some of my others, but it's something I'd feel comfortable using. If I do use it, I will drop the snowflakes to the floor at the end of each verse - my groups love watching anything that falls.

Another rhyme that might work is this version of Five Little Snowflakes, which I found here.

Five little snowflakes
Dancing here and there.
Then one little snowflake
blew away in the air!

(Count down to zero.)

Zero little snowflakes
Not one to be found.
Cause five little snowflakes
have fallen to the ground!

Finally, with my baby lap time groups, I'll also be using popsicle stick puppets and a couple of snowflakes to do this song, which I found at Mel's Desk

Dance like snowflakes,
Dance like snowflakes,
In the air, in the air,
Swirling, whirling snowflakes,
Swirling, whirling snowflakes,
Everywhere, everywhere.

This week's Flannel Friday host is Melissa (@MelissaZD). Also find us, as always, on Pinterest and Facebook.
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