Saint Patrick’s Day – Preschool Storytime

Hope you’re wearing green, because today we celebrated St. Patrick’s Day at storytime! 

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Can’t Wait to Celebrate” from Jim Gill’s Irrational Anthem by Jim Gill

Good Luck Bear by Greg Foley

Leprechaun’s Lucky Charms
Story inspired by K at Storytime ABC’s and her Leprechaun, Leprechaun, What Do You See? and Lucky Charms breakfast cereal (which makes this flannelboard magically delicious!)
Patterns via Google Images search and Microsoft Shapes tool on Word
I also found some glittery gold foam at Michael’s and stuck that on to some felt to make the gold in the pot sparkle. 

Leprechaun’s Lucky Charms
Start with the leprechaun on the flannelboard.  Add the other pieces where mentioned in the story.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have a red heart here with me.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have an orange star here with me.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have a yellow moon here with me.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have a green clover here with me.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have a blue diamond here with me.

Leprechaun, leprechaun
What lucky charms have ye?
I have a purple horse shoe here with me.

Let’s see what colors we have – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. 
What does that make?
A Rainbow!

And what can you find at the end of the rainbow?
Leprechaun’s pot of gold!

“Dance, Dance Leprechaun Dance”
(to tune of “Skip to My Lou”)
Dance, dance, leprechaun dance.
Dance, dance, leprechaun dance.
Dance, dance, leprechaun dance,
Do a dance for me.

At this point I asked the kids in storytime what were some other things leprechaun’s did.  Some of the answers I got were:
Search, search, search for gold…

And I like to finish with…
Sit, sit, leprechaun sit.
Sit, sit, leprechaun sit.
Sit, sit, leprechaun sit.
Sit for our next story.

Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger

MOVEMENT: “Shake My Sillies Out” from More Singable Songs for the Very Young by Raffi

Leprechaun Where’s Your Gold?
Inspiration and Story from Imagination Station.
Patterns via Google Search.

Before you start this flannelboard, hide the gold behind one of the colored pots
Leprechaun knows he has some gold, but he has so many different pots, he doesn’t know where it is!  Let’s see if we can help him find it!

Leprechaun, leprechaun, tiny and bold.
Where, oh where is your gold?
What does the _(color)_ pot hold?


Leprechaun, leprechaun, tiny and bold.
I’m out looking for your gold.
What treasures does the _(color)_ pot hold?

Max and Ruby A Visit with Grandma DVD
“Ruby’s Rainbow” from Max & Ruby: A Visit with Grandma

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*

 CleverTomandtheLeprechaunbyShute LeprechaunUndertheBedbyBateman StPatricksDayCountdownbyYoon LuckyLeprechaunbyBentley
Book: Clever Tom and the Leprechaun by Linda Shute
Book: The Leprechaun Under the Bed by Teresa Bateman
Book: St. Patrick’s Day Countdown by Salina Yoon (I should also make this into a flannelboard)
Book: Lucky Leprechaun
Flannelboard: Five Little Leprechauns
Flannelboard: Five Green Shamrocks

You know how sometimes you have a storytime where everything comes together and feels really good?  That’s what this storytime felt like.  It went really well, and helped give me that rush that comes from really connecting with the audience.  We had a lot of younger children at this storytime (even though we call it Preschool, we usually end up with some toddlers at every storytime), so I chose stories that were on the younger side to tell.  Foley’s Bear stories always entertain.  I had never used Green before, and was a little bit worried about how it would work since there wasn’t a lot of text on the pages.  I started by prepping the audience that there were a lot of different types of green and that they could guess what sort of green was coming up.  It actually turned out to be a great choice for a storytime, because there were so many great opportunities for dialogic reading and audience interaction.  Also I think the reason this storytime worked well was because of the flannelboards.  I had made these last year, and was happy to have them to use.  That’s the thing about flannelboards — they may take a while to make up front, but you will have them forever.
Also I had some familiar faces in the audience – a librarian friend brought her son, a friend who used to page here and her children, and a lovely family who used to attend my infant toddler storytimes – and that always helps make storytime better!

ATTENDANCE: 48 (adults and children)

*To see the words to these movements and activities I use frequently, please visit my A-capella Movements Section on my Storytime Movements and Music Page

Flannel Friday Birthday Extravaganza: Five Birthday Candles

This week we’re celebrating Flannel Friday’s 2nd Birthday!!  I think instead of terrible twos we are in for some terrific twos.

To celebrate I’m sharing a flannel inspired by fellow Flannel Friday participant Katie.

Five Birthday Candles
5 Birthday Candles
wish there were more
Blew out one,
then there were 4.

4 birthday candles,
pretty as can be.
Blow one out,
then there are 3.

3 birthday candles,
Hope my wish comes true.
Blow one out,
then there are 2.

2 birthday candles
Birthday cakes are fun
Blow one out,
Then there is 1.

1 birthday candle,
the party’s almost done.
Blow out one,
Then there are none.

Today’s Flannel Friday roundup is hosted by Flannel Friday originator Melissa at Mel’s Desk.  For more information on Flannel Friday, visit the Flannel Friday blog or Pinterest page.

5th Grade Storytime – St. Patrick’s Day

Yesterday a group of fifth graders came into the library for a class visit.  Since Saint Patrick’s Day is coming soon, I thought we should celebrate with some Irish folktales and leprechaun stories.

finmcoul by Depaola
Fin M’Coul by Tomie de Paola


“Amazing Bone” from Strega Nona …and More Stories About Magic

There aren’t a lot of good Saint Patrick’s Day videos for kids.  So I decided to show “The Amazing Bone” because it features a magical creature as well.



Because I have been working more frequently with younger kids lately (my colleague does the older class visits), fifth graders seem like they are adults to me.  This storytime went pretty well, and Fin M’Coul got a few laughs.  The kids really seemed to like “The Amazing Bone” as well.  Though the audio in our storyroom was giving a lot of reverb and the deep stringed instruments in the soundtrack made them laugh and think of farts.  Maybe that’s why they liked the video. 

ATTENDANCE: 18 people


Flannel Friday: What Flannel Friday Means to Me

To celebrate the second anniversary of Flannel Friday, bloggers who to post or use Flannel Friday are answering the question:


I haven’t been active with Flannel Friday as a blogger for that long, but I have been a user of Flannel Friday posts and pinterest for a while.  For me, what I get from Flannel Friday is:


This may seem like a lot from weekly blog postings, but it’s all true.  It’s nice to know small things like sharing ideas can have such a large impact.  (In fact, the idea that sharing ideas can have a large impact is one of the reasons I became a librarian in the first place.)

Doing children’s programming is wonderful, but after a while it can become stale if you do the same thing time after time.  Flannel Friday helps expand my repertoire of storytelling ideas and themes.  I get great ideas not only for flannelboards to make, but also different prop stories I may not have tried before, different books to use that work well, and different themes.  It was Flannel Friday posts, in fact, that made me want to try my hand out at blogging.  I thought if I was getting so much out of posts that others were writing, maybe someone out there would benefit from my ideas.

This, in turn, leads to my growth as a professional.  Be it growing as a storyteller to try new things I may not have thought of without the group, or growing as a blogger who writes about her day-to-day work with youth, Flannel Friday is making me better at my job.

And it’s nice to realize that there are others out there who are concerned with the same things you are.  The community around us librarians who want to make the library a fun, exciting place for children is great.  I’m fortunate that I work at a library location where I am with a staff of great people who are dedicated to serving youth.  But sometimes it’s nice to look outside our own organizations to grow, and Flannel Friday helps do that for me.  It lets me know that as much as we are encouraged (and I want to) grow and develop and pursue and advance up the library ladder, there is beauty and satisfaction in the day-to-day of working with books and youth.  And I’m not the only one who sees that.

Finally, Flannel Friday helps give me confidence.  I posted my first Flannel Friday post on January 4, 2013 (I told you I’m new at this!).  As anyone who has posted to the group knows, you wait with bated breath that first time to see your post go live, and then see how many people are visiting your blog.  Then you get comments saying that your ideas will be useful to others!  There’s a fantastic rush that goes along with that.  And it’s also nice to hear others say, even if they don’t comment on your blog, that they like it and use what you’ve posted there.  Another reason I like being a librarian is because I enjoy helping others, my blog feels like an extension of that in some way. 

So thanks, Flannel Friday, and all you bloggers, readers and commenters out there.  You’ve inspired me, helped me grow, expanded my community, and helped me gain confidence.  I am so so grateful to you!  You are awesome!

Today’s Flannel Friday roundup is hosted by Sharon at Rain Makes Applesauce.  For more information on Flannel Friday, visit the Flannel Friday blog or Pinterest page.

Family Storytime – Dr. Seuss

To celebrate Dr. Seuss’s Birthday on March 2, we held a special version of our preschool storytime honoring his works.  My supervisor and I worked on this program together, so we tagged-teamed on the storytime.

MOVEMENT: “Shake My Sillies Out” from More Singable Songs for the Very Young by Raffi

We started off with a prop-filled presentation of:
Green Eggs and Ham.

I portrayed Sam-I-Am, and my supervisor was the friend unwilling to try the titular treat.  We had a table set up with all the props we needed for the story including:
GreenEggsandHamProps1 GreenEggsandHamProps2 GreenEggsandHamProps3 GreenEggsandHamProps13

Green Eggs and Ham (Color photo-copy laminated)
Here or There (Color photo-copy laminated, found via Google Image Search)
A House (made from Lego)
A Mouse (Puppet)
GreenEggsandHamProps4 GreenEggsandHamProps7 GreenEggsandHamProps6 GreenEggsandHamProps11
A Box
A Fox (he looks a little tired, I know, but it’s a fox from our puppet collection)
A Car
A Tree (Also from the library’s puppet collection)

This next row is a bit more… creative…
GreenEggsandHamProps5 GreenEggsandHamProps10 GreenEggsandHamProps8
A Train (train whistle, I made the noise each time the book said “train”)
Dark (a black piece of construction paper with the word “dark” on it)
The Rain (a squirt bottle filled with water, that I misted every time the word “rain” was said.  This got a good laugh, and was a great idea from my supervisor)
GreenEggsandHamProps14 GreenEggsandHamProps9
A Goat
A Boat

Since Sam-I-Am is the one who introduces the different props, I would hold up the item in question as I mentioned it.  Then, my supervisor read off the answers of where the green eggs and ham would not be enjoyed, I held the item in question up again so that the audience could say it aloud.  She also showed the illustrations of the book as well so those could be seen by the audience. 

Colorful Eggs (No Ham)
ColorEggsFlannelboard1 ColorEggsFlannelboard2
I stole this brilliant idea from this post at Mel’s Desk.

I took her suggestion of making it into a game, so on one side the eggs are a nice and normal yellow.  On the other, wild colors! I started with all the yellow yolks up, then turned each one over at the appropriate time as I recited:

I do so like ____
eggs and ham.

(filling in the blank with the audience of the color of the egg).  From this activity I learned that my pink egg (second from the left on the top row) really looks like an orange egg from afar and not like the hot pink it looks up close.

One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss

My supervisor just read an except of this one, up until the “goodnight” part.  It worked really well shortened like that.

MOVEMENT: “If You’re Happy and You Know It – PS Version”
My supervisor does this one a little differently, so check out my A Capella Movements page for the PS version.

“Zax” from Seuss Celebration: 9 Favorite Televised Classics

Many of the Seuss videos are 25 minutes long or so — “Zax” worked well for storytime since it was only 3 minutes or so.

What would a birthday celebration be without a sweet treat?  After the movie, we all sang “Happy Birthday” to Dr. Seuss, and then it was time to let them eat cake!
(I forgot to take a photo of the cake before it was devoured!  But as you can see, at least we had a lot of interest!)

ATTENDANCE: 38 people

HOW IT WENT: I think this was a really fun unique storytime.  Other than joining in on storytimes as an intern, I’d never done a joint storytime before.  I think it went really well, and that we both were able to highlight the places where we shine in storytime to make it a success.  I think if I were going to do this program again, I might have a larger table on which to place the props — since Seuss changes the patter of the objects in Green Eggs and Ham that might make it easier to do.  Another Idea I had for that would just be to used laminated images for all the objects like I did for the green eggs and ham.  Then I could just have a stack put together and go through the stack in order as the items were mentioned.

How did you celebrate Dr. Seuss’s Birthday or Read Across America?

3rd Grade Storytime – Folktales and Food

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while — things have been rather busy here at work as the whole staff has shifted their work areas.  That, and I haven’t done a lot of storytimes in recent weeks.  But here I am, back with a recent class visit.

I do programming more frequently for the preschool and under set, and while I love working with school-aged children, I still find myself rather intimidated by them.  I’ve found that folktales are the perfect way to connect with these kids — and a great way to highlight what a great folktale collection we have!

Love and Roast Chicken by Barbara Knutson

The Three Wishes
ThreeWishesFlannelboard1 ThreeWishesFlannelboard2
Patterns and Story from  The Flannel Board Storytelling Book  by Judy Sierra.
Patterns can be found on page 97 of Sierra’s Pattern eBook.

This is a great story about a woodcutter who is granted three wishes, and the way he and his wife foolishly use them.  It’s a good one to use to spark discussion.

MOVEMENT: Aroostacha*

Ananse’s Feast: An Ashanti Tale retold by Tololwa M. Mollel

“Strega Nona” from Strega Nona …and More Stories About Magic

MrsChickenandtheHungryCrocodile SausagesbySouhami FatCatbyMacDonaldPancakesforSupperbyIsaacs GatorGumbobyFleming

Mrs. Chicken and the Hungry Crocodile
 by Won-Ldy Paye (one of my favorite folktales, but I read it to them last year)
Sausages by Jessica Souhami (This is a book version of The Three Wishes)
Fat Cat: A Danish Folktale by Margaret Read MacDonald
Pancakes for Supper by Anne Isaacs
Gator Gumbo by Candace Fleming

Pretty well!  This third grade class is really wonderful, and always such fun to read stories to, mostly because the teacher is really involved with her class and you can see she enjoys it as well.  I think, since Love and Roast Chicken is so long, I might have done another movement, then the flannelboard, then Aroostacha, and then the movie. 

ATTENDANCE: 21 people

*To see the words to these movements and activities I use frequently, please visit my A-capella Movements Section on my Storytime Movements and Music Page