Fast & Slow – Toddler Storytime

I think I did a slow storytime for preschoolers a while ago, and I thought it might be fun to use with toddlers.  I didn’t have enough good slow stories to round things out, so I decided to make it a fast & slow storytime.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Your Hands, Clap Your Hands” from Tickles and Tunes by Kathy Reid-Naiman

MOVEMENT: Open Shut Them*

BOOK:

“Slowly, Slowly, Slowly,” said the Sloth by Eric Carle

MOVEMENT: “Reach for the Ceiling” from Toddlers on Parade by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

MOVEMENT: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

COUNTING SONG:*
10 Turtles Flannelboard cropped with logo
10 Turtles

FLANNELBOARD:
Fast and Slow
Fast or Slow Flannelboard cropped with logo
(Flannelboard pattern & rhyme from 2′s Experience Felt Board Fun by Liz & Dick Wilmes. Art by Janet McDonnell)

Have the vehicles behind the board.  Put one vehicle on the board at a time, and ask the audience if it goes fast or slow. When they answers, move the vehicle across the board at the correct speed.  You can also make the noises the vehicle makes as you move it. Take this piece of the board, and then repeat with the next vehicle.  This is nice one because you can lengthen it or shorten it depending on your audience.  Those are all the flannel pieces I have for this pictured on the board – I didn’t actually use them all.

MOVEMENT: “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: Itsy Bitsy Spider

BOOK:

Clip-Clop by Nicola Smee

MOVEMENT: “Two Little Blackbirds” from Fingerplays and Footplays by Rosemary Hallum and Henry “Buzz” Glass

VIDEO:

“The Balloon Ride” from Peppa Pig: The Balloon Ride

MOVEMENT:  Storytime’s Over*

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL IDEAS:
  
Book: Faster! Faster! by Leslie Patricelli
Book: Mini Racer by Kristy Dempsey, illustrated by Bridget Strevens-Marzo
Book: Late Nate in a Race by Emily Arnold McCully
Flannelboard: The Giant Carrot (it has a snail!)

HOW IT WENT:
Storytime went so much better this week!  Yay!  You know how when you talk to someone but you’re not sure if it made any difference?  That’s how I was left feeling at the end of last week, but SOMETHING must have happened, because everyone sat with their child and participated today.  Yay!  We are even handing out balloons as a promotion for a future event, and even with those, the kids were awesome.  I did start by telling the parents since I knew balloons could be a distraction that I would need their help today.   Maybe I just need to use that approach more.  It’s a helping environment.  Whatever it was that happened, it was a nicer storytime.

When I was picking materials for this storytime I wasn’t sure that “Slowly, Slowly, Slowly” said the Sloth would work with toddlers.  I did skip over a few of the animals asking Sloth about his habits, but on the whole it seemed to work really well.  I think I would use that again.

ATTENDANCE:  10 am:  31 people      11 am: 38 people

* For these songs, please see my Storytime Movements & Music page

Fast & Slow – Infant Storytime

Today’s storytime focused on things that are fast or slow.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: Peek-a-Boo*

BOUNCE: I’m a Little Cuckoo Clock*

BOOK:

Clip-Clop
 by Nicola Smee

MOVEMENT: “Clap, Tap and Bend” from It’s Toddler Time by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

FLANNELBOARD:
Fast or Slow Flannelboard cropped with logo
(Flannelboard pattern & rhyme from 2′s Experience Felt Fun by Liz & Dick Wilmes. Art by Janet McDonnell)

Have the vehicles behind the board.  Put one vehicle on the board at a time, and ask the audience if it goes fast or slow. When they answers, move the vehicle across the board at the correct speed.  You can also make the noises the vehicle makes as you move it. Take this piece of the board, and then repeat with the next vehicle.

BOUNCE: “Ladies Ride” from Wiggleworms Love You by Old Town School of Folk Music

BOOK:

Slow Snail
 by Mary Murphy

TICKLE: Round and Round the Garden*

NURSERY RHYME FLANNELBOARD:
Little Miss Muffet
LittleMissMuffetFlannelboard
(Felt pieces from Little Folk Visuals)

Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet,
Eating her curds and whey.
Along came a spider,
Who sat down beside her.
And frightened Miss Muffet away.

MOVEMENT: “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: “Itsy Bitsy Spider” from Children’s Favorite Songs Volume 3 from Walt Disney

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*

ADDITIONAL MATERIALS:
  
Book:
 Quick Duck by Mary Murphy (board book)
Book: How Fast can You Go? by Kate Riggs, illustrated by Nate Williams (board book.  I also thing this one would make a good flannelboard.)
Book: Faster! Faster! by Leslie Patricelli

HOW IT WENT:
This was a good storytime.  I like “I’m a Little Cuckoo Clock” as a bounce.  We did it three times in a row, and that didn’t seem like overkill.  Slow Snail is a regular sized board book, but I thought the pictures were simple enough to carry across the room and still be seen.  I love Mary Murphy’s books. I picked Little Miss Muffet as today’s nursery rhyme because if I had a spider sit next to me during my breakfast, I would probably move pretty quickly away.

ATTENDANCE: 44 people

* For these songs, please see my page Storytime Movements & Music

Birds – Toddler Storytime

Books about birds are fly!

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Your Hands, Clap Your Hands” from Tickles and Tunes by Kathy Reid-Naiman

MOVEMENT: Open Shut Them*

BOOK:

Baby Bird by Joyce Dunbar, illustrated by Russell Ayto

MOVEMENT: “Roll Your Hands” from Toddlers on Parade by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

MOVEMENT: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

COUNTING SONG:*
10 Birds Flannelboard cropped with logo
10 Birds
These birds were actually from an Easter garland I found at Michael’s.  I pulled of the ribbon that was hot glued to the back, and — voila! — insta-adorable-flannelboard!

FLANNELBOARD:
Here Comes the Little Bird
Here Comes Little Bird Flannelboard1 Cropped with logoHere Comes Little Bird Flannelboard2 cropped with logoHere Comes Little Bird Flannelboard3 cropped with logo
(Flannelboard pattern & rhyme from Felt Board Fingerplays by Liz & Dick Wilmes. Art by Janet McDonnell)

Rhyme from the Book:
Here comes little bird. (Your fist is the bird.)
He’s landing on my HEAD. (Land where you want.)
Bye, bye little bird. (Fly bird away.)
Bye! Bye! Bye! (Wave to bird.)

Way I do the Rhyme:
Here is a little girl
and here is a curious little bird.
Here comes the little bird.
He’s landing on her HEAD.
Where’s your head?  Can you show me?
(Have bird land on various other body parts.)
Here comes the little bird.
He’s landing on her tummy.
And when he’s there he likes to give a tickle, tickle, tickle (give tummy a tickle.)
And then he flies away.
Fly, fly little bird. (remove bird from flannelboard.)
Bye! Bye! Bye!

MOVEMENT: “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: Itsy Bitsy Spider

BOOK:

Feathers for Lunch by Lois Ehlert

MOVEMENT: “Two Little Blackbirds” from Fingerplays and Footplays by Rosemary Hallum and Henry “Buzz” Glass

VIDEO:
Baby's First Word Stories Outside DVD
“Let’s Look for Birds” from Baby’s First-Word Stories Outside

MOVEMENT:  Storytime’s Over*

HOW IT WENT:
The 10am storytime was really hard.   Harder than last week.  I have three children who just enjoy running around..  The parents do not try to curb this behavior, and often are just chatting among themselves.  It causes a distraction for those who want to participate in storytime — I even had one parent tell me that she was thinking about dropping storytime because she didn’t like it so much.  Also, English is not their native language, so even though I talked to them after storytime today, it made it difficult to know if my point was getting across.  I usually try to go with the flow in my storytimes and am fairly lenient when it comes to discipline, and only interject when safety is an issue — after all, I am not the parent.  But I may need to get a little more rigorous about rules in that storytime.  How do you handle this in your storytimes?  Any advice would be welcome.

As usual, the 11am storytime was a lot better though.  And there were even more people in that group.  It’s nice to finish on an up note, because 10 am was really hard you guys.

ATTENDANCE:  10 am:  41 people      11 am: 48 people

* For these songs, please see my Storytime Movements & Music page

Birds – Infant Storytime

It had been a while since I’ve done a bird storytime.  I purchased Yuly’s Early Bird a while ago and really wanted to try it out, and figured, so even though it’s fall it’s always the season for birds.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: Peek-a-Boo*

BOUNCE: Ride a Little Pony*

BOOK:

Early Bird by Toni Yuly

MOVEMENT: “Clap, Tap and Bend” from It’s Toddler Time by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

FLANNELBOARD:
Here Comes a Little Bird
Here Comes Little Bird Flannelboard1 Cropped with logo Here Comes Little Bird Flannelboard2 cropped with logo Here Comes Little Bird Flannelboard3 cropped with logo
(Flannelboard pattern & rhyme from Felt Board Fingerplays by Liz & Dick Wilmes. Art by Janet McDonnell)

Rhyme from the Book:
Here comes little bird. (Your fist is the bird.)
He’s landing on my HEAD. (Land where you want.)
Bye, bye little bird. (Fly bird away.)
Bye! Bye! Bye! (Wave to bird.)

Way I do the Rhyme:
Here is a little girl
and here is a curious little bird.
Here comes the little bird.
He’s landing on her HEAD.
Where’s your head?  Can you show me?
(Have bird land on various other body parts.)
Here comes the little bird.
He’s landing on her tummy.
And when he’s there he likes to give a tickle, tickle, tickle (give tummy a tickle.)
And then he flies away.
Fly, fly little bird. (remove bird from flannelboard.)
Bye! Bye! Bye!

BOUNCE: “Ladies Ride” from Wiggleworms Love You by Old Town School of Folk Music

BOOK:

Nest
 by Jorey Hurley

NURSERY RHYME FLANNELBOARD:
Jack Be Nimble
Jack Be Nimble Flannelboard
(Felt pieces from Little Folk Visuals)

Jack be nimble,
Jack be quick.
Jack jump over the candlestick.

To make this into a bounce, start with the child on one leg, when Jack jumps over the candlestick, lift child into the air and have child land on the other leg.

MOVEMENT: “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: “Itsy Bitsy Spider” from Children’s Favorite Songs Volume 3 from Walt Disney

FLANNELBOARD:
5 Little Red Birds
5 Little Red Birds Flannelboards cropped with logo
(I need to check where this rhyme came from… I’ll add my source as soon as I find it)

Five little red birds, pecking at my door.  (hold up five fingers)
One flew away, and Then there were four.  (hold up four fingers)
Four little red birds sitting in a tree.
One pounced on a worm and then there were three.
Three little red birds calling, “Coo-coo-coo.”
One flew to a nest and then there were two.
Two little red birds sleeping int he sun.
One woke and hopped away and then there was one.
One little red bird, as lonely as could be.
When it flew away, all that’s left was me!

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*

HOW IT WENT:
Infant storytime was good fun.  I think it was the costumes that made things more difficult last week.  We are back to being attentive and, as always, adorable. :)

ATTENDANCE: 34 people

* For these songs, please see my page Storytime Movements & Music

Halloween – Toddler Storytime

I love doing Halloween storytime with the toddlers, because they are SO CUTE when they come in costume.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Your Hands, Clap Your Hands” from Tickles and Tunes by Kathy Reid-Naiman

MOVEMENT: Open Shut Them*

BOOK:
PumplyDumplyPumpkinbySerfozo
Plumply, Dumply Pumpkin by Mary Serfozo, illustrated by Valeria Petrone

MOVEMENT: “Roll Your Hands” from Toddlers on Parade by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

MOVEMENT: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

COUNTING SONG:*
10 Pumpkins Flannelboard 2 cropped with logo
10 Pumpkins (from Artfelt)

FLANNELBOARD:
Little Mouse, Little Mouse
MousesHalloweenHouseFlannelboard
 (Pattern & story from Mother Goose’s Playhouse by Judy Sierra)

One day in the fall, a little gray mouse found a big orange house.
She nibbled a hole in the middle to make the door.
She nibbled 2 holes near the top to make windows.
She nibbled a wide hole near the bottom so her children could run in and out.
Then she put a candle inside so the house was never dark.

The mouse’s little house
was a sight to be seen.
It was a jack-o’-lantern –
Happy Halloween!

MOVEMENT: “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: Itsy Bitsy Spider

BOOK:
DuckandGooseFindaPumpkinbyHills
Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin
 by Tad Hills

MOVEMENT: “Two Little Blackbirds” from Fingerplays and Footplays by Rosemary Hallum and Henry “Buzz” Glass

VIDEO:

“Goblin Night” from Little Bear Halloween Stories

MOVEMENT:  Storytime’s Over*

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL IDEAS:

Book: 10 Orange Pumpkins by Stephen Savage
Book: What Am I? Halloween by Ann Margaret Lewis, pictures by Tom Mills
Book: Mouse’s First Halloween by Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Buket Erdogan
Book: It’s Halloween Night by Jennifer O’Connell, illustrated by Jennifer Morris

HOW IT WENT:
The 10am storytime was really hard.   Infant today was difficult too, and I just think that carried over.  As I mentioned in my infant post, I think that wearing a costume has a freeing effect — it gets the kids excited.  But it also is adorable, so I don’t want to do away with it.

I feel like sometimes I am running the program with two different minds — one is focused on reading the books, and following the agenda for the storytime.  The other is taking stock of what is happening in the room, and wondering if I should be doing something about, or modifying behavior, or things like that.  If two kids are running around, do I just ignore it and focus on the ones who are listening?  I don’t know.  I need to become better at crowd management/control.

The 11am storytime was a lot better though.  And there were not as many children in costume.  Coincidence?

ATTENDANCE:  10 am:  40 people      11 am: 48 people

* For these songs, please see my Storytime Movements & Music page

Halloween – Infant Storytime

It’s that time of year for pumpkins, costumes and fun!

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: Peek-a-Boo*

BOUNCE: Ride a Little Pony*

BOOK:

What Am I? Halloween by Ann Margaret Lewis, illustrated by Tom Mills

MOVEMENT: “Clap, Tap and Bend” from It’s Toddler Time by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

FLANNELBOARD:
5 Little Pumpkins
5 Little Pumpkins Flannelboard cropped with logo
(Flannelboard pieces & Rhyme from ArtFelt)

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate.
The first one said, “Oh my, it’s getting late!”
The second one said, “There are witches in the air!”
The third one said, “Well, I don’t care!”
The fourth one said, “Let’s run, run, run!”
The fifth one said, “I’m ready for some fun!”
OOOOOOoo went the wind and
OUT (clap) went the lights.
And the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight.

BOUNCE: “Ladies Ride” from Wiggleworms Love You by Old Town School of Folk Music

BOOK:
DuckandGooseFindaPumpkinbyHills
Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin
 by Tad Hills

NURSERY RHYME FLANNELBOARD:
Hickety, Pickety, My Black Hen
HicketyPicketyFlannelboard1 HicketyPicketyFlannelboard2
(Template and Rhyme from Mother Goose’s Playhouse by Judy Sierra)

Hickety, pickety, my black hen.
She lays eggs for gentlemen.
Gentleman come everyday
To see what my hen doth lay.
Sometimes nine and sometimes ten,
Hickety, pickety, my black hen.

MOVEMENT: “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: “Itsy Bitsy Spider” from Children’s Favorite Songs Volume 3 from Walt Disney

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL IDEAS:

Book: On Halloween by Lark Carrier
Book: Mouse’s First Halloween by Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Buket Erdogan

HOW IT WENT:
Today’s storytime was hard.  I called all the storytime parents yesterday, and let them know that since we were having a Halloween themed storytime, the children were welcome to come in costume.  I think maybe wearing a costume allows the wearer to be a different person, because it seemed harder to get through things today.

As you can see, I forgot to include a parent tip, because I just was so unfocused (and also, since it is new, not in the habit yet.)  What Am I? Halloween was a really long book for this crowd, so I cut out a few of the pages.  The idea that you don’t have to read a book straight through was going to be my parent tip, but I just was so worried about getting the kids’ attention back that I just moved along to the next thing.  I forgot to do 2 verses of Itsy Bitsy Spider.

The Nursery Rhyme just didn’t seem to be as familiar as others as well.  I was thinking that maybe in the future I should have a laminated page with the words of the rhyme on it that is backed in flannel — then I could put that up on the board so that parents would be able to join in.

But the kids in costume were adorable!  And the new bounce worked well.

I work with one of the parents from my infant group, so at lunch today I apologized to her for the storytime.  She told me she didn’t even notice that things were harder.  It’s reassuring to know that even when I feel like things are going all wrong on the inside, it doesn’t always show the audience.

ATTENDANCE: 47 people

* For these songs, please see my page Storytime Movements & Music

Mice – Toddler Storytime

I know that cats usually follow mice, but I decided to do things the other way around for this storytime session.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Your Hands, Clap Your Hands” from Tickles and Tunes by Kathy Reid-Naiman

MOVEMENT: Open Shut Them*

INTRODUCTION: with Mouse Puppet from Folkmanis

My friend this time was my brown mouse puppet.  I had him come out and be shy to the audience (really, this is the only puppet-y thing I know how to do.)  Then I pretended I didn’t know what he was and we went over his features together: 2 ears (where are your ears?), a little nose (show me your nose!), etc until they told me he was a mouse!

BOOK:

Mice
 by Rose Fyleman, illustrated by Lois Ehlert

MOVEMENT: “Roll Your Hands” from Toddlers on Parade by Carol Hammett and Elaine Bueffel

MOVEMENT: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

COUNTING SONG:*
10MiceFlannelboardcroppedwithlogo
10 Mice

FLANNELBOARD:
Little Mouse, Little Mouse
LittleMouseFlannelboard1CroppedwithLogoLittleMouseFlannelboard2CroppedwithLogo (Pattern & Rhyme from Felt Board Fingerplays by Liz & Dick Wilmes)

Little mouse, little mouse
Are you in the (insert color here) house?

I know I use this rhyme a lot, but it is one of my favorites.  I like hiding other animals in the different houses so that it is a surprise when things are uncovered. The ones picture above are from some of my ArtFelt sets.  I also like to leave one house empty with “nobody home”.

MOVEMENT: “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” from Songs for Wiggleworms by the Old Town School of Folk Music

MOVEMENT: Itsy Bitsy Spider

BOOK:

Thank You Bear
 by Greg Foley

MOVEMENT: “Two Little Blackbirds” from Fingerplays and Footplays by Rosemary Hallum and Henry “Buzz” Glass

VIDEO:

“Playground” from Play Time Maisy

MOVEMENT:  Storytime’s Over*

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL IDEAS:

Book: Mouse’s Birthday by Jane Yolen illustrated by Bruce Degen
Book: Pip & Squeak by Ian Schoenherr
Book: Mouse Mess by Linnea Riley
Book: Lunch by Denise Fleming

HOW IT WENT:
This was a fairly good storytime.  I am finding that the puppets seems to be a good way of kicking off the show.  I don’t know if I will have puppets for all my different storytime themes, but so far it works alright.  Mice was a great book to read.  At the 10 am storytime, I didn’t do a very good job of emphasizing who it was that liked mice, so I made sure at the 11 am storytime to point that out.  It was fun, and I think the colors carry very well.  The groups were having trouble sitting still towards the end of storytime, so I shorted Thank You Bear by skipping a few of the pages.  It worked just fine.

I originally meant to show the Dancing episode of Maisy – after the short episode the song was “The Wheels on the Bus” and I thought that might appease the heckler from last week.  However, I didn’t cue the DVD correctly, so we watched Playground instead.  Since the kid didn’t have a breakdown about “The Wheels on the Bus” I’m thinking we’re good.

ATTENDANCE:  10 am:  44 people      11 am: 44 people

* For these songs, please see my Storytime Movements & Music page