Thursday, November 10, 2016

Tales for Twos and Threes - Self Esteem

This storytime focuses on body positivity and self esteem. I did this storytime today and a parent came up to me, thanking me several times for leading a storytime on this timely topic. I think it is really important to teach young children that they are unique and beautiful, no matter what skin color they are. I may just be a children's librarian, but I can make a difference in the lives of children by sharing books on these very important topics. 

1)   Introduction – This is the Way Our Hands Say Hello (to tune of the Mulberry Bush)

This is the way our hands say hello,
With a clap, clap-clap, Clap, clap-clap
This the way our hands say hello,
With a clap, clap-clap, clap-clap

This is the way our knees say hello,
With a tap tap-tap,
Tap tap-tap
This is the way our knees say hello,
With a tap tap-tap, tap-tap

This is the way we wave hello,
Wave hello, wave hello
This is the way we wave hello,
So early in the morning

2)   Flannel Board: Build a Pig 
I chose this activity because it's fun and it leads into our next book, I Like Me by Nancy Carlson. I don't want to take credit for this one, I actually found this idea from another storytime blog, Reading Chick. You start with a body and ask the children what else the pig needs. Match the wrong body parts, ask them if that looks right, and watch the kids yell out "NO!" Kids find this really funny when you add silly parts like an elephant's trunk to the pig's head instead of a snout. Love this one!

3) Book: I Like Me by Nancy Carlson


This is such a cute book :) It's seriously perfect for young children, ages 2 and up. It's short enough and has adorable illustrations while teaching very important concepts like body positivity and self esteem. My favorite pages are when she says, "I like my curly tail, my round tummy, and my tiny little feet." 

4)   Song: Pancake Manor - Move Your Legs



Love this song too. The "freeze" part is great and stops toddlers in their tracks!

5) Book: Happy in Our Skin by Fran Manushkin


I seriously love this book. I've read this at three different storytimes already. The message is very powerful and it's presented in a way that is digestible for children. We all have skin! I also asked children a few questions throughout the book to get their attention. On the page that says "Whoops! When you fall, your skin will heal with a scab, a perfect seal." I asked children, "Who here has had a scab? Raise your hand if you've had a scab!" Many kids in the audience raised their hands. I also did this for the page that says "Sometimes skin has freckles" because I noticed some parents pointing out the freckles on their children's arms. It was cute to see the parents interacting with their children based on the text. :) Highly recommend this book for any storytime because of it's inclusive illustrations and celebration of diversity!  

6) Flannel Board: Five Ballet Dancers
Five Ballet Dancers
Five ballet dancers
Dancing on their toes.
They bend their knees and jump,
then off the stage one goes!
How many ballet dancers are left?

The clipart I used was purchased through the Etsy shop, MyClipArtStore


I asked children to follow the actions of the rhyme and some of them did. I'll admit, none of the children tried to dance on their toes (they have not yet fully developed their fine and gross motor skills to really attempt that yet). I did do my best to do it in front of them as I read the rhyme (which is kind of funny to think about because I do not have the best balance, LOL). Some children did bend their knees and jump. I actually think this would work really well with preschoolers because they would be more willing and able to do the actions. The kids liked counting with me though, as always! :) 

7) Book: Be Who You Are by Todd Parr

This is honestly my new favorite book this week. It is seriously adorable and spreads SUCH a good message, as do all Todd Parr books. The message at the end goes well with the theme of today's storytime:
"It doesn't matter what color you are, where you are from, or who's in your family. Everyone needs to be loved. Always love yourself and BE who are you ARE." -- Todd Parr
8) Affirmations: I Am by Cynthia Dawn
I am great!" (Arms wide) 
I  am smart!" (Finger to head)
I am strong! (Flex muscles) 
I am loved (Hug yourself)
Today is an awesome day! (Jump in the air, fist pump). 

Cynthia Dawn shared this in a post on Storytime Underground. It was very successful. I had the kids repeat the word and action after I said it once. The kids followed along so well and I might actually do this at every storytime because I loved it so much!! Thank you again Cynthia for sharing this, it was truly wonderful! 

9) Final Song: Laurie Berkner - My Energy (I used this song with shakers but it would work great with scarves too). 


 Lyrics: 

This is me, this is me
This is me and my energy
This is me, this is me
This is me and my energy
I'm gonna wiggle my legs
I'm gonna click my heels
I'm gonna stomp my feel
Because I have energy
This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 
This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 
I'm gonna wave my arms
I'm gonna shake my hips
I'm gonna jump to the sky
Because I have energy

This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 
This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 

I'm gonna clap my hands
I'm gonna shake my head
I'm gonna yell out loud
Because I have energy
This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 
This is me, this is me 
This is me and my energy 

And it's the only thing that I can be
Yeah I'm the only thing that I can be
Me! Me! Energy! Me! Me! Energy!
Me! Me! Energy! Me! Me! Me!

10) Early Literacy Tip: 
Raise a Confident Child by Playing Together. You will learn a lot about your child—and yourself—during play. Playtime gives your child the message, “You are worth my time. You are a valuable person.” It is well known that children learn through play. It improves a child’s behavior by giving him feelings of importance and accomplishment. Instead of viewing playtime as a chore, use it to make an investment in your child’s behavior.

Tip brought to you by Dr. Sears, the author of The Baby Book.


11) Playtime & Actvity: If parents wanted to, they had the chance to trace their child's hand and then make fingerprints on their paper. It was really cute, even though it did leave children's fingertips a fun shade of blue lol. Make sure to use washable ink for this activity! 




Additional Fingerplays:

Nice Fingers (modified from the fingerplay, "Not So Crazy Fingers" in the book Artsy Toddler by Carol Garnett Hopkins. I chose to use the word nice instead since this storytime was focusing on positive traits and crazy can be taken as a bad thing)

I have nice ears (Point to ears)
And a nice nose (Rub nose)
Nice shoulders (Wiggle shoulders)
And nice toes (wiggle toes)
Nice hair (Pat hair)
And a nice chin (point to chin)
And my nice fingers sit quietly like so (Fold hands together into lap). 

All of Me by Jessica McDonald (found on Pinterest, Play Learn Love
My hands are for clapping
My arms can hug tight
My fingers can snap
Or can turn out the night
My legs are for jumping
My eyes help me see
This is my body
And I love all of me!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Tales for 2s and 3s - Monster Halloween Storytime & Craft!

My first storytime for the 2 and 3 year olds was October 27th so I did a fun monster/Halloween themed storytime! :) 

Here is my storytime & craft outline!

1)   Introduction – This is the Way Our Hands Say Hello (to tune of the Mulberry Bush)

This is the way our hands say hello,
With a clap, clap-clap, Clap, clap-clap
This the way our hands say hello,
With a clap, clap-clap, clap-clap


This is the way our knees say hello,
With a tap tap-tap,
Tap tap-tap
This is the way our knees say hello,
With a tap tap-tap, tap-tap

This is the way we wave hello,
Wave hello, wave hello
This is the way we wave hello,
So early in the morning

2)   Book #1 – Go Away Big Green Monster


This is such a classic book and perfect for this age range. The book is great because the children can participate and tell each part of the monster to "GO AWAY!" It's also great because it identifies colors, which children should be pretty familiar with at this age. 

3)   Song: Spooky Loo on the CD, Wee Sing for Halloween

Here we go Spook-y Loo, Here we go Spook-y Light,
Here we go Spook-y Loo, All on a Hal-low-een night.

You put your right hand in, You put your right hand out, You give you right hand a shake, shake, shake, And you turn your-self a-bout. Oh,

(Chorus after each verse)

2. ...left hand...

3. ...right hand...

4. ...left foot...

5. ...head...

6. ...whole self...


4)   Book 2: Little Monsters








This is an old pop up book from 1986. It might be hard to find in your library but I had to add it here. It is SUCH a cool book. The pop ups are spectacular and at the end, it asks the reader to count how many monsters were in the book. So I asked the children to help me count all the monsters in the book (there were five). Love it! 

5)   Flannel Board Story: Chocolate Chip Ghost

Chocolate Chip Ghost is a sweet little flannel board story that has been told in storytimes for years. It might not fit the monster theme but it's perfect for Halloween time! In this story, the five ghosts have to eat all white foods so they can stay white but the mom runs out of food. The mom goes to the grocery store and before she leaves, she tells the ghosts to not eat anything until she gets back with dinner! Of course, the naughty ghosties are hungry and begin eating different things in their fridge. One ghost eats a strawberry and turns red! I have the children try to guess the color the ghost will turn based on the food they eat. I also have them join in with me and say "Oh no!!" once I flip the ghost over to reveal their color.   Another ghost eats a lemon meringue pie and turns yellow! Oh no!! Finally, the last little ghost looks and looks but doesn't find anything in the cabinets, until he sees a cookie jar on the tallest shelf in the corner. He eats the cookie in a snap and turns chocolate chip colored! Oh no!! Of course the mom then comes home and gives each ghost a glass of milk where they all turn back to white again.  




Here are the words to the story:

Once there was a Mama Ghost and five little ghosts who lived in a spooky old house. They were all a sparkling dazzling white. Mama ghost made sure they stayed so white by letting them eat only white milk.

Once day, just before suppertime, when Mama Ghost looked into the refrigerator, there was no milk for their supper! She quickly got ready to go to the grocery store. Just before she left she told her five little ghosts to be sure not to eat anything, since she would be back with their suppers very soon. With that, she gave them all a kiss and went off to the grocery store.


All went well for a time, but soon the first little ghost said “I’m hungry. I really want something to eat.” And with that, he opened the refrigerator door and found a red ripe strawberry and ate it all up. And he turned bright red. "Oh no!!!"

The second little ghost said “No fair! I’m hungry too.” And opened the refrigerator and found a lemon meringue pie and ate it all up. She turned a bright yellow. "Oh no!!!" 

The third little ghost started crying that he was hungry too and ran to the refrigerator and drank a glass of grape juice and turned purple. What do you think he said? (ask kids to join in) "Oh no!!!"

The fourth little ghost was mad because she was hungry and the only thing left in the refrigerator was a piece of lettuce which she ate, and it turned her green! Oh no!!!

The last little ghost was hungry, hungry, hungry. But when he looked in the refrigerator there was nothing to eat! But he was hungry, hungry, hungry! So he looked in all the drawers, and in all the cabinets, and finally on the very top shelf of a cupboard, there was a cookie jar. And in that cookie jar was one chocolate chip cookie. The little ghost was so hungry that he ate in all up in one snap! And He turned chocolate chip colored! and what did he say? Oh no!!!

Just then Mama Ghost returned from the grocery store with milk for the little ghost’s suppers. My, oh, my! Was she surprised to see all her little ghosties all the colors of the rainbow!


You naughty little ghosties! Come and get your supper right now! So she gave each of them a glass of white milk and each little ghost turned sparkling white again.


6)   Book #2 – Tickle Monster by Edouard Manceau


This is such an awesome book and pairs so well with Go Away Big Green Monster! It is PERFECT for this age range. The book begins with, "Hey Tickle Monster! You don't scare me! If I tickle your horns... you can't poke me!" In this story, the reader is prompted to tickle various parts of a monster and he is deconstructed with each part that is tickled, repurposing the monster parts into a far less threatening scene (feet turn upside down and become trees in a scene, for example). You can prompt children to pretend they are a monster and have parents tickle the various parts on their child as the monster in the story slowly goes away. Parts that are tickled: horns, arms, feet, teeth, tummy, ears, nose, eyes, and finally, head (the last part to go). I love the last few pages of this book too. "And now, if I tickle your head... you're gone! Good-bye Tickle Monster!" -- "Phew! I can finally go to sleep" -- "But if you ever come knocking on my door, Tickle Monster, beware: I will tickle you again!"

It's been a while since I've seen a book that is almost as amazing as Go Away Big Green Monster! This book was a big hit with the kids. 

7)   Halloween Dance on the CD, Golden Records Spooky Halloween HitsThis is the classic 60's song that prompts children to march like a monster, shake their hands like a skeleton, put their arms up like a goblin, and dance like a fairy! It's a really great song to get kids moving. I will note though that some of the sound effects (particularly the monster roaring sounds) may be a little spooky for young children. However, I haven't had any complaints yet and I've played this song at 4 different Halloween storytimes over the years :) Listen to it below:




8)   Quote from Mr. Rogers: Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood. (perfect quote to lead into the playtime!)

9)   Craft & Playtime. The craft for this week was a monster visor. It is made mostly from ellison shapes with the addition of multicolored sticker dots and googly eyes. The beauty of this craft is that not all of them will look alike! I love crafts that don't end up looking all the same. I wish I had a picture of some of the children's visors but I forgot to bring a camera into the program. 





Happy Halloween everyone!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Sarah's Guide to Lapsit

This storytime is aimed at 0-24 months. At the beginning of each storytime I usually introduce some of our puppets. This gets children out of their shell a little. It also helps to calm any fears they may have about coming to storytime! I make sure every child gets the chance to pet the puppets if they'd like :) 

If I notice we have any new patrons at storytime, I formally introduce myself and also go around the room and do introductions. An introduction may be as simple as going around the room and having the parent/caregiver say the name and age of their child. If the group is small, I may also ask them to share a recent developmental milestone in their child's life. I also make any announcements that I have, like if the storytime session is coming to an end or I may mention any new programs for babies (like 1000 Books Before Kindergarten).

1. Opening Songrepeat the same song every week. Here are two options that I like to use.

Open Shut Them
Open, shut them,
Open, shut them
Give a little clap, clap, clap
Open, shut them, open, shut them
Lay them in your lap, lap, lap

Creepy crawly, creepy crawly,
Right up to your chin, chin, chin
Open up your little mouth
But do not let them in, in in

Welcome Welcome Sung to “Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star”
Welcome, welcome everyone,
Now you’re here let’s have some fun.
First we’ll clap our hands just so, (clap baby’s hands)
Then we’ll bend and touch our toes. (touch baby’s toes)
Welcome, welcome everyone,
Now you’re here let’s have some fun.

2. Book:  Try a unison read if it fits your theme.  If your library has a healthy budget, you can buy several copies of a specific book - enough so that each child and caregiver can read one together. For example, I would give everyone a copy of a board book of either Tubby by Leslie Patricelli, Pat the Bunny, or Moo, Baa, Laa by Sandra Boynton.  You read the copy and everyone follows along! This is a great opportunity for babies to get familiar with the different aspects of reading a book, like turning a page. 




3. Shaker Song - Sung to the tune of “London Bridge" Pass out shakers to the child and adult. If a parent feels their baby is too young to use a shaker, encourage the caregiver to take one to model the proper action. I actually sing this song every week! It really is awesome to see the young toddlers getting acclimated to it. After the kids have gone to enough storytime sessions, it almost becomes second nature to them! :) 

"Shake your shakers, shake, shake, shake,
Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake
Shake your shakers, shake, shake, shake,
Shake your shakers!

Other Verses:
Shake your shakers high, high, high,
Shake your shakers  low, low, low,
Shake your shakers  fast, fast, fast,
Shake your shakers  slow, slow, slow"



 


Warning: Some shakers may be considered choking hazards because of the beads inside the shaker. It is important to regularly check shakers or other musical instruments to make sure they are not on the brink of breaking open. No level of safety precaution replaces the value of supervision, common sense, and caution on the part of librarians, parents and caregivers.  

4. Book: Any book of your choice

5. Song on CD: I usually choose a song by Wiggleworms or Kathy Reid-Naiman. I also love Raffi's version of "Little Red Wagon." Occasionally I will throw in a more upbeat shaker song like “I Know a Chicken” by Laurie Berkner if the kids in attendance are on the older side. However, you don’t want to play a song that is too upbeat and rowdy for the infants.

  


6. Book: Any book of your choice

7. Baby Bounce – review the other resources listed at the end of this post. Jbrary especially has great baby bounces. They are also on Youtube.

8. Book and then a song if time permits. This also depends on the energy levels of your group. Sometimes the kids are just TOO squirmy so I'll just play a song on CD and end storytime a little early and go straight into playtime. I also sometimes sing goodbye bubble. Watch Jbrary present the song in this helpful video!

9. Playtime! After storytime, I bring out a few toys and let children play for about 20 minutes. Toys that are really popular with children are the Little Tikes pianos and animal pop up toys are both super popular. Also the spikey bouncey sensory balls and rubber animals are extremely fun for babies and toddlers. The baby musical instruments and rainmakers are also popular. We recently also got a little Melissa & Doug Playful Puppy that kids enjoy “walking” by pulling the string. I also go around with my puppets and let kids interact with the puppets. (Can you tell how much I love puppets?)

There is no Magic Lapsit Storytime Routine
Also, please know that you don’t have to follow this exact sequence as long as you include at least 1 baby bounce, a song or two on CD, and a couple of books. Do what you feel comfortable with. There is no magic format for a successful Lapsit Storytime. Some librarians do more baby bounces, less books, or more songs. I do however, think it's important to always include early literacy tips as part of your storytime - even if you think the parents might already know the fact or tip you're going to share. It reinforces what they know and helps them feel that they are doing the right thing for their child. I sometimes share early literacy tips while we’re playing with the toys so it feels less instructional or I’ll share them at the end of my last book. 

Sample Early literacy tip:
Babies may just want to mouth the book! That’s okay. When you let your child explore books in the ways that interest her, the reading experience will be more meaningful.

Source: Zero to Three, How to Introduce Toddlers and Babies to Books

OTHER RESOURCES:

This is an incredibly helpful handout that talks about early literacy behaviors (book handling behavior, what type of books infants and toddlers like, and suggestions for ways to share books with babies and toddlers). 

Jbrary has a VERY comprehensive guide with a ton of helpful links to help you do baby storytime. I think you will find it very useful! 

https://intentionalstorytime.wordpress.com/babytime/
This is a very useful guide to lapsit as well! What I love here are the tips on age appropriate toys for playtime following storytime as well as the suggestions for board book sets! 

http://www.naperville-lib.org/sites/default/files/Kids/lapsit.pdf
Naperville Public Library has some nice baby bounces to use in storytime too!

Excellent information about leading storytime to infants. Could be used for early literacy tips. Just be sure to credit the website you are getting the tip from! 

A great list of some baby bounces from Pierce County Library!

Kathy Reid-Naiman has some great tickle tunes, shaker, and bell songs. Definitely recommend her resources and CDs!



Thursday, September 15, 2016

Libraries are for Babies Too

As a Youth Services Librarian focused on early literacy, I hope that I can influence more parents to bring their babies to the library through promoting our baby programs and displays of baby books. If we can get some grant money, I am also hoping that we can put together some baby-friendly kits, similar to Boston County Public Library's Baby Booster Kits. These kits contain board books on early learning concepts like colors, shapes, community leaders, healthy eating, and more. They also include a music CD and a parent resource book. I think this is such an excellent idea.
Another kit I have been curious about is the Baby Brain Box created by the New Directions Institute, a program of Arizona's Children Association. Founded in 1998, their mission is to share important messages about brain development so that parents could take advantage of the critically important window of opportunity that occurs in infancy. 
These Brain Boxes are unique patented educational products for caregivers to use with children from birth to 5 1/2 years old. Each box contains activity guides and all the materials needed for adult-child interaction that encourages healthy brain development.
I did inquire about the price and they cost $2,000 for the Brain Boxes and they also provide training to staff. We unfortunately don't have that in our budget, but it is definitely a product to consider in the future if we were to have extra funds to go towards early literacy materials.
I started to think more about the perception that libraries aren't meant for babies and after doing some research, I found this wonderful article from publiclibrariesonline.org that discusses a lot of the challenges of bringing babies and toddlers to the library. I never thought deeply about it until now, but it makes sense why some parents might find it daunting to bring their young child to the library. Parents might find it embarrassing if their toddler begins screaming and babies can be incredibly unpredictable too. Parents might also not realize that the library even has baby programs and board books specifically aimed at infants.
So what can a library do? Well there are a lot of ways that the library can make the environment more baby/toddler friendly. Not only can we have a vast array of board books and baby-friendly kits, storytimes aimed specifically at infants, we can also make changes to the environment. There are many changes that can be made to the library's play area, like creating a clean and dedicated early learning space of the library where we invite and encourage caregivers to bring their young ones. Such a space should help to contain the noise and fluster of activities which is better for all patrons. The space should also include developmentally appropriate reading materials, open ended toys that encourage creative free play, appropriate and comfortable furniture for parents, caregivers, and children to sit on (maybe even a glider for nursing mothers), and posters/signs that remind parents that this space is for them.
As I read on this article, "The Case for Making Libraries Full of Games and Toys", games and toys are an important aspect of early learning for children. "In a study with 70 six-year olds, psychologists at the University of Colorado found that the children who engaged in more free play had a 'more highly developed self-directed executive function' than those who had spent more time in 'structured activities,' that were adult-led rather than child-initiated."
This is one of the reason why I am excited to lead my Imagination Station Storytime in October. Open ended free play is very important in the lives of young children.
With regards to programming for young children, a worthy program is 1000 Books Before Kindergarten. This is an excellent program that many libraries across the world are participating in. Learn more about it here: http://1000booksbeforekindergarten.org. Demco also has a lot of great resources and some are free too!: http://www.demco.com/goto?1000_books
I will be launching 1000 Books Before Kindergarten at Messenger Public Library where I work in just a few days so I am thinking A LOT about the ways in which libraries can promote early literacy practices to caregivers! Look for a blog in the next week where I will talk in detail about how the program works. :)
While I am very excited, I have already begun to notice a lot of parents don't think their babies should participate but are interested in signing their toddler or preschooler up. I noticed this with the Summer Reading Program too! It seems as though a lot of caregivers don't realize the importance of reading to children the minute they are born. I hope that I can encourage people to not just sign their 2 or 3 year old up, but their infant as well! Babies need books too. It is truly never too early to start reading to babies. Don't believe me? Check out this NPR article which presents a strong case for reading to infants, citing research and advice from pediatricians.
What do you do to promote library services to babies?

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Being a Children's Librarian.... Why I Love My Job

Random thoughts, keeping me awake at night: 


I have over $3,000 worth of books that I want to order for the library. I spend a huge chunk of time going through every single book, making sure that it's a good purchase, making sure that it's age appropriate, in the right section it should be in, then making sure all the technical details are correct on our book supplier's web page so that the book is processed correctly with the right spine label and in the right account. I love ordering books but the computer work you have to do in order to get the books to the library is really a very complicated job. I don't think anyone really knows how hard librarians really work to manage library collections unless they are a librarian themselves or work in a closely related field. 

For the non-librarians reading this, did you know that at every public library, there is at least one, if not several, librarians working incredibly hard, reading book reviews, scouring the internet for book recommendations and book lists, thoroughly reviewing award lists, and reading book review journals, all to find the best books for their community? This is often on top of helping patrons at the reference desk, answering computer questions, creating programs for patrons, and so much more!

As for me personally, I also do special programs like the Cardboard Box Challenge, Campfire Tales, Curious Kids, Preschool Pals, Lapsit Storytime, Saturday Stories & Songs, Sensory Playtime, Animal Hospital, Minute to Win It, etc. I am also a computer wizard, handing out computer passes left and right - at times 20 passes in a matter of hours. It has become insanity at the Youth Services Department, kids lining up for their turn on the computer, just to play the latest online computer game.

I also have the beautiful job of managing a play area which we recently added a light table and Magna-Tiles to. It is incredibly exciting. Kids have been begging me to see their Magna-Tile creations while the next day, gifting me with beautiful drawings they proudly made. I have a collection of lovely drawings from the many children I have worked with. I usually tape them to my workroom window to remind me of the kids who so eagerly show their appreciation.

I also get the glory of sending kids home with books they want to read, their faces beaming with excitement as they exit the library. 

Let me tell you. I do A LOT!!! It can be overwhelming, multitasking in the most unbelievable ways. But every morning, I am happy to say that I do not dread going into work. I am so lucky to have a job that brings this special type of satisfaction. Working with children is simply the best! No matter how many "To-do" lists I have running through my brain, I wouldn't trade it for the world. I am so lucky to be a Children's Librarian and feel so happy to provide services to children and families on a daily basis!

This shout out goes to all the librarians out there - even if you don't always feel appreciated, your work is important and meaningful. This is your reminder! :) 




Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Lapsit Storytime : Birds!

This storytime is aimed at 0-24 months. At the beginning of each storytime I usually introduce some of our puppets. This gets children out of their shell a little. It also helps to calm any fears they may have about coming to storytime! I make sure every child gets the chance to pet the puppets if they'd like :) 

Here are the Folkmanis puppets I introduced at this storytime:


Snowy


Woodpecker Family (also makes noise!)


Baby Bird in Egg



1. Opening Song: Open Shut Them

Open, shut them,
Open, shut them
Give a little clap, clap, clap
Open, shut them, open, shut them
Lay them in your lap, lap, lap

Creepy crawly, creepy crawly,
Right up to your chin, chin, chin
Open up your little mouth
But do not let them in, in in

2. Book:  What a Hoot by Fran Preston-Gannon




This book is large and on the heavier side but I love that it's big because it's perfect to read to a group! Most board books are small which can make it hard to share with an audience. The illustrations are adorable and the book has short and simple texts, making it perfect for the 0-24 month olds. It describes many common opposites that young toddlers and babies are becoming familiar with (loud and soft, clean and dirty, alseep and awake, for example) and then the book, of course, has silly illustrations such as an owl who really likes to bake! 

3. Fingerplay: Two Little Lovebirds - a classic fingerplay! 

Two lit­tle love­birds sit­ting on a hill
One named Jack, one named Jill
Fly away Jack, fly away Jill
Come back Jack, come back Jill.
*kiss* muah!

Two little lovebirds sitting on a cloud
One named Soft, one named Loud
Fly away Soft
Fly away Loud
Come back Soft, come back Loud 
*kiss* muah!

4. Shaker Song - Sung to the tune of “London Bridge”


"Shake your shakers, shake, shake, shake,
Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake
Shake your shakers, shake, shake, shake,
Shake your shakers!

Other Verses:
Shake your shakers high, high, high,
Shake your shakers  low, low, low,
Shake your shakers  fast, fast, fast,
Shake your shakers  slow, slow, slow"

I actually sing this song every week! It really is awesome to see the young toddlers getting acclimated to it. After the kids have gone to enough storytime sessions, it almost becomes second nature to them! :) 

5. Book: Little Bird Biddle Bird by David Kirk 
Love this book! It's a wee bit long but the kids seemed to enjoy it. I love the illustrations and the sing-song flow the book has. Plus, it's just fun to say "little bird, biddle bird." It's a great read-a-loud and also shows all the early science words associated with birds that young children should be learning: feathers, nests, eggs, and worms!





6. Song: Fleas, track 24 on More Tickles & Tunes by Kathy Reid-Neiman
Creep your fingers up and down baby, touching the named parts as you go. 


On my toe there is a flea  Now it's climbing on my knee
Past my tummy, past my nose

On my head where my hair grows

On my head there is a flea 
Now it's climbing down on me 
Past my tummy, past my knee
On my toe, take that, you flea!
 

7. Book: In My Nest by Sara Gillingham  & Lorena Siminovich

I absolutely LOVE these books with the little finger puppet attached by Sara Gillingham. They seriously get an infant or toddler's attention! I used to bring a bunch of these books over to the 10 month old I was babysitting and he would immediately be attracted to them. 




Early literacy tip:
At this age, it's more than fine if a child doesn't sit and actually listen to you read the book. Simply getting a child to be interested in books is the goal here. Young children can only sit for a few minutes for a story, but as they grow, they will be able to sit longer. Let your child decide how much (or how little) time you spend reading. And you don’t need to read every page. You may find that your child has a favorite page or even a favorite picture. She may want to linger there for a while, and then switch books or activities. Babies may just want to mouth the book! That’s okay. When you let your child explore books in the ways that interest her, the reading experience will be more meaningful. 

Source: Zero to Three, How to Introduce Toddlers and Babies to Books

8. Baby Bounce: I’m a Little Cuckoo Clock!

"Rock babies gently back and forth on your lap as you say the verse. Then lift them up in the air for each “Cuckoo!” 
Source: Mel's Desk

Tick tock, tick tock
I’m a little cuckoo clock
Tick tock, tick tock
It’s one o’clock!
CUCKOO!

Tick tock, tick tock
I’m a little cuckoo clock
Tick tock, tick tock
It’s two o’clock!
CUCKOO! CUCKOO!

9. Book: Bring on the Birds by Susan Stockdale


This is a very colorful board book about birds! The story features several different types of birds with simple text and colorful illustrations. The book is on the small side though if you're reading it to a larger group. 


After storytime, I bring out a few toys and let children play for about 15-20 minutes. 

Hope you enjoyed this bird storytime for babies and toddlers, 0-24 months!