Saturday, October 6, 2012

Drop-In Story Time, 10/5/12

I use the same hello and goodbye songs at almost every session. Click here for the tunes and words. For descriptions of each of my story times, click here

I highly recommend taking a break when story time starts to burn you out. It wasn't quite intentional, but I wound up not doing this story time for almost two weeks, and coming back to it yesterday it was like I was a new person. I was relaxed, my transitions were smooth, and though the group was not as large as normal, they were engaged for the full thirty minutes. (My transitions are in red, because I want to remember how I did them.)

Song: The Rules Song
This is a song the other children's librarian and I wrote together to the tune of The Farmer in the Dell. The basic structure of it is as follows:

Rule number 1, rule number 1
No eating in the library.
That's rule number 1. 

We name three more rules, and then rule #5 is "Have lots of fun at story time."I got the group involved by asking them to show me their fingers for each number.

Song: Way Up in the Sky

I have a whole book about saying good morning. It's called Hello, Day! 

Book: Hello, Day! by Anita Lobel

Wow, look at this beautiful moon. I'm going to put this book down so I can make a moon with my hands. Can you do this? Let's sing a moon song.

Song: Moon Moon Moon 

Would you like to read another book? You would?

Song: If You’d Like to Read a Book

 Great! Here's a book.  It's called Little Blue Truck.
Book: Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle 

What a nice story. Those animals really helped that truck! I bet you can drive a truck. Can you show me your steering wheel?

 Song: Drive, Drive, Drive Your Truck / Row Row Row Your Boat

One place we might go in a truck or a boat is the beach. A bear lives near this beach. This book is called Bear's Day Out

Book:  Bear’s Day Out by Michael Rosen

You really helped Bear on his day out. Give yourselves a hand!

I'm going to put a letter on the board. Look, the letter G! And look, a friend who starts with G! Who is this? That's right, a giraffe! I know a poem about the giraffe.
Letter of the Day: Letter G 
  • Poem with Puppet: Giraffes Don't Huff
    This poem is all about how giraffes don't make any sound. At the end of the poem, we all said, "shhhh" together.

    Two more words that start with G are "Grandma" and "glasses." Can you put some pretend glasses on your eyes?

  • Rhyme: Here are Grandma’s Glasses
    One more G word. These are... gumballs!
  • Flannel Board: How Many Gumballs?
    I am especially proud of this flannel board, and I want to wait until this week's Flannel Friday post to reveal it. Stay tuned!
Good counting everybody! Now let's sing some more.

Songs with Ukulele: ABCs / Twinkle Twinkle Little Star / Baa Baa Black Sheep

That was so nice, we'll keep singing. Let's clap.

Song: Sing a Happy Song

Song: Bumpin’ Up and Down in My Little Red Wagon

Song: Chickadee

Baby Lap Time, 10/4/12

I use the same hello and goodbye songs at almost every session. Click here for the tunes and words. For descriptions of each of my story times, click here

It's hard to believe we have already been offering lap times at my branch for a year. They have become so popular, this time around we actually divided them into two groups - Toddler Lap Time for walkers and Baby Lap Time for non-walkers. I'm alternating weeks between the two groups, but this week it was my turn to be with the babies. I will miss the continuity of being with them every week, but I'm looking forward to also having a turn with the toddlers, many of whom were in my first lap time group last year.

I introduced a new hello song for this session, to the tune of London Bridge, where we sing hello to our toes, knees, tummy, hands, head, and then to all of our friends. The words are posted on the hello and goodbye song page along with all the others.

This session had a theme - Up and Down - which I forgot to actually announce to the group, but I doubt anyone noticed. Almost everyone is new to lap time at our library, so it was a very awkward start for me, as I could feel them sort of looking at me, sizing me up and wondering if what I'm doing is legitimate or just foolishness. I did a great job, but for  the first time ever, no one clapped or said thank you when I finished  the session. Such a weird feeling.

Anyway, here are my baby lap time activities for Up and Down. 

Rhyme: Cheek Chin 

Rhyme: Dance Your Fingers

Song with Puppet: Mr. Sun

Book: The Bridge is Up by Babs Bell

This is the perfect audience for this book. Lots of repetition and a very simple plot.   

Rhyme with Puppet: Hey Diddle Diddle

Song: Itsy Bitsy Spider

Song: Tony Chestnut

Song: Head and Shoulders 

Book: Subway by Anastasia Suen, illustrated by Karen Katz
Another with one with repetition, and bright colorful pictures. It also has a good rhythm. I mentioned these things to the parents, who stared at me blankly. 

Song: Bumpin' Up and Down in My Little Red Wagon 

Song with Puppets: I'm a Little Monkey

Songs: ABCs / Twinkle Twinkle Little Star / Baa Baa Black Sheep

Book: All Fall Down by Helen Oxenbury

Song: This is the Way We Clap Our Hands

Preschool Story Time (Dog Theme), 9/28/12

I use the same hello and goodbye songs at almost every session. Click here for the tunes and words. For descriptions of each of my story times, click here

Our preschoolers have started complaining that songs and rhymes are "boring," so I decided not to incorporate as many of those into this story time. Instead, we read some longer books, and thanks to our partnership with Scooby-Doo and Cesar Millan's National Family Pack Walk, we also offered a craft at the end of the story time.

Book: The Digging-est Dog by Al Perkins
The kids loved this one. Even though a baby cried through a few pages of the story, they didn't lose focus. They were so invested in the story. A grandmother even commented afterward that she had never seen a group this age sit so still and so quietly for so long.

Song: Shake My Sillies Out 

Book: Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion
This is always a hit. I love this book.

Song: Bingo
I can't do this song at the bigger story times because no one seems to understand when to clap and they don't wait for instructions. This group loved it. One of the pickier little girls left singing her own silly version of the song after story time was over.

Book: The Adventures of Taxi Dog by Debra and Sal Barrasco, pictures by Mark Buehner
I could not have anticipated how much they would enjoy this. The rhyming text irritated me, but the kids really got into it.

Craft: Paper Bag Dog Puppets 

I have never seen people make such a mess with craft supplies. They refused to throw scraps in the garbage, they ground tips of crayons into the floor, and most of them didn't bother to clean up after themselves in the slightest. It was so bad, I have decided that any future crafts we offer will be pre-packaged kits to take home. The kids did enjoy making their puppets, though. 

Pajama Story Time, 9/26/12

I use the same hello and goodbye songs at almost every session. Click here for the tunes and words. For descriptions of each of my story times, click here

Sometimes you feel like a theme - sometimes you don't. This time, I did, and I went with books demonstrating the concepts of up and down. 11 kids came to this story time, and a ton of parents as well, and it was a bit more hectic than usual, but the kids seemed to like all the books and activities, except possibly my homemade flannel board.

Book: Up! by Kristine O'Connell George, illustrated by Hiroe Nakata
This was a real parent-pleaser. I try to read at least one of those at every pajama story time.

Song: Way Up in the Sky
I love everything I find from King County Library System's amazing online collection of songs and rhymes. The librarian in this video especially charmed me. I just love  the way she sings this song. And my groups have started to love it, too. 

Flannel Board: Mommy is Asleep
I tried this with a smaller group because I wanted an opportunity to tell it for an audience before presenting it to the big, drop-in group.  They didn't really like it, but I think the bigger groups will.

Book: The Bridge is Up by Babs Bell
This book was a bit too babyish for half the group and just right for the other half.

Song: Bumpin’ Up and Down in My Little Red Wagon

Book: Rollercoaster by Marla Frazee
I would never read this to a very large group because the illustrations have so much detail. It worked nicely in a group like this, where everyone could move in close to take a look. And the parents loved the ending even more than the kids! 

Let's Go Riding on the Elevator

Book: Sky-High Guy by Nina Crews
This is a nice book about two brothers who come together to rescue a toy who gets stuck in a tree. The kids were interested in the photos, but not as engaged with the plot. 

Song: Tommy Thumb

Book: Higher Higher by Leslie Patricelli
I think I'm getting sick of this one. My delivery is starting to sound forced.

Song with Puppets: Goodnight by the Laurie Berkner Band

Song: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Here Come the Dinosaurs! (After School Story Time), 9/25/12

Last school year, I offered an after school read-aloud and craft every Thursday. This year, due to staffing changes, I have to be on the children's desk almost every afternoon during the school-age rush. Therefore, I can't offer regular programming for the after school crowd because I have to be available to answer questions and help with homework. Thankfully, though, I was able to squeeze in a dinosaur-themed program for the month of September. It didn't attract the intended age group, which was a disappointment, but I tried! And I plan to try again with a more engaging "big kid" theme in October.

(During this portion of the program, two kids were in the room - both four-year-olds who regularly attend preschool story time. I had other books in mind, but read these instead when I noticed how young my audience was.)

If the Dinosaurs Came Back by Bernard Most
This was the favorite, because of the list of dinosaurs and their pictures at the back of the book. The two girls in attendance asked me to name every one, and they were practically in my lap trying to get a look at them. 

When Dinosaurs Came with Everything by Elise Broach, illustrated by David Small
It's hard to tell whether they thought this book was funny, but they sat and stared at it, so it must have been interesting at least!

T. Rex by Vivan French
They seemed startled by this book, but neither was truly upset.

(During this portion of the program, there were ten kids in the  room. Everyone brought in their babies and toddlers and plopped them down in front of  the screen. *sigh*)

We watched two stories on this DVD - Danny and the Dinosaur and T is for Terrible.

Write and Draw Activity: 

I created this activity myself in Microsoft Word, using clipart for the dotted lines. Click here to download a .pdf for your own use.
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