Friday, June 15, 2012

Baby/Toddler Lap Time, 6/15/12

The following (mostly) unprecedented things happened at Baby/Toddler Lap Time this morning:
  1. There was almost complete silence during the first story. 
  2. I read four books without any difficulty whatsoever.
  3. Three of the four books I read were actually borrowed by kids who loved them. 
  4. I adhered exactly to my plan and had no need to make alterations.
Is this a sign of more wonderful story times to come? I sure hope so! 

Opening Song: Hello, how are you? 

Rhyme: Dance Your Fingers

Song: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Book: The Fathers are Coming Home by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Stephen Savage (2007)
I read this same book exactly one year ago. They didn't like it nearly as much this year as last, but they were dead silent for the first half of it, so something about it must have gotten their attention!

Flannel Board Song: Daddy's Ties 
The rainbow tie "for when Dad is feeling fancy" got a bit of a chuckle from some adults. This is one of the better flannel boards I have for sharing in a large room. The shapes are simple enough that they can be seen from the back of the room. We sang each verse twice so the kids had the chance to really learn the tune.   

Book: The Babies on the Bus by Karen Katz  (2011)
I had to tape the first page of this book back together this morning - that's the second story time book this week with a tear in it! Still, it held together just fine, and this group was really into it. All the adults sang along and did  the motions, and I saw a couple of the preschoolers moving in closer to scrutinize the illustrations. This song has never been a favorite of mine personally, but Karen Katz makes it great.

Song: Shake My Sillies Out 

Song: I'm a Little Teapot

Book: Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin and James Dean
The original Pete the Cat story can't be topped in my opinion, but Groovy Buttons is better than School Shoes. The subtraction lessons kind of interrupt the rhythm of the story a little bit, but my group still got into it. They were particularly thrilled each time a button went "Pop!"

Rhyme: Blue is the Lake 

Song: If You're Happy and You Know It

Book: The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry, and The Big Hungry Bear by Audrey and Don Wood (1984)
The librarian who orders our children's materials sent us two brand-new copies of this book this week. So exciting! We lost our last copy months ago, and I've been waiting to read it. It was the fourth book of the session, so it didn't get as much attention as the first three, but kids came running up to see the book afterwards, and many of them told me they had it at home or at school. 

Song with Puppets: Goodnight
We sang goodnight to a lion, a cat, and a dog.

Goodbye Song: We Wave Goodbye Like This 

Flannel Friday: H-A-P-P-Y

The more favorite songs, rhymes, and books I discover, the more difficult it becomes to choose among them, so I have started doing more themed story times just to make it easier to organize myself and keep some variety in my repertoires. On Tuesday, I did a feelings theme, where the biggest hit was a song I wrote called H-A-P-P-Y.  I used clipart from to make popsicle stick puppets (my group is too large these days for my small flannel board to be practical), and then rewrote the lyrics to a song I originally saw at Preschool Express. Here is the end result:

 Smiley Face Clip Art
When I'm feeling full of joy,
I am feeling happy!
I am feeling happy!

Angry Smiley Clip Art 
When I'm feeling mad and mean,
I am feeling angry!
I am feeling angry!

Smiley With Tongue Out Clip Art 
When I'm feeling full of beans,
I am feeling silly!
I am feeling silly!

(Note: One of my coworkers uses the phrase "full of beans" to describe kids when they're acting silly. I think it's a great phrase so I stuck it in my song.)

Snoring Sleeping Zz Smiley Clip Art 
When it's time to go to bed,
I am feeling tired.
I am feeling tired!

The only thing I might do differently the next time I use this is to have the letters for each word on hand. I don't know how much toddlers understand spelling anyway, but having the letters on the flannel board to point to might help them make a connection to the letters, whereas singing them without any visual cues might have been confusing. That said, they liked this song a lot on Tuesday, and it was a fun change from my usual songs!

This week's Flannel Friday host is Sarah at Read It Again! Find out more about Flannel Friday on the official website.
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