Happy Birthday to JenintheLibrary! Now with a giveaway!

Happy Birthday to Jen in the Library!


Today marks the anniversary of my first real blog post!
(My first post was really on July 3, 2012, but it took me until September 29, 2012 to get up the courage to write an official storytime blog post.)

So, to celebrate, I thought I’d run a short little contest.

Now through October 13th, in the comments section of this blog post, write which of the flannelboards I’ve featured on my blog you’d like for your own, and a short reason why. I’ll do a random drawing, and the winner will receive a version of the flannelboard they mentioned in the comment!  (Small Print: Delivery may take a bit as I will have to make it for you.  Also, please just mention the flannelboards I’ve made, and not ones I’ve purchased from an outside source.)

I know a lot of the people who use this blog are either librarians or teachers, so you probably enjoy making flannelboards on your own.  But, I figure, who doesn’t like to save a little time and get one ready-to-go!


Apples – Preschool Storytime

A few weeks ago I did an apple storytime, but I forgot to post it on here!  So, I figure better late than never.

September always makes me think of starting school (even though school starts here now in August!), and fall (even though it’s in the high 80s, mid 90s).  So how else could celebrate the first Saturday in September than with a storytime about apples, the most quintessential of fall fruits?

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Jump Jump” from I’m a Rock Star by Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights


by Ragnhild Scamell

A Little Apple Seed
(to tune of “Itsy Bitsy Spider”)

Once a little apple seed
was planted in the ground.
Down came the raindrops falling all around.
Out came the big sun
Bright as bright could be
And that little apple seed grew up
to be an apple tree.

A-P-P-L-E Flannelboard1

(to tune of “Bingo”)There is a fruit that’s good to eat
and apple is its name-o.
and apple is its name-o.

Now when we turn the apple over, and you don’t see a letter, you clap instead! (Do this one apple at a time — I just took this photo when two apples were turned over.)A-P-P-L-E Flannelboard2

There is a fruit that’s good to eat
and apple is its name-o.
and apple is its name-o.

Continue singing  and clapping until all apples are turned over.
A-P-P-L-E Flannelboard3

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

An Apple Tree
Way up high in the apple tree (lift hands above head)
Four red apples (hold up 4 fingers)
smiled at me (smile)
So I shook that tree as hard as I could (pretend to shake the tree)
And down came an apple.
Mmm… was it good! (rub tummy).

Continue with the rhyme until all apples have been eaten!


Apple Pie ABC by Alison Murray


“Chicka Chicka 1 2 3” from Chicka Chicka 1 2 3  — and more stories about counting

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*


Book: A New House for Mouse by Petr Horácek
Book: Ten Red Apples by Pat Hutchins
Book: Little Apple Goat by Caroline Jayne Church
Book: Apple by Nikki McClure

Though we say this is a preschool storytime, we actually end up with a wide range of ages in the audience on any given Saturday.  I started out with the book Ouch! because that is one of my favorites – I love the illustrations, and the kids and the adults both seem to get a kick out of it.  However, with the group I had this Saturday, the story felt rather long.  That’s why for my second book I chose Apple Pie ABC – it’s still engaging, and the photos are wonderful, but it is a lot shorter and I hoped that would help with the concentration of the audience.  I think it worked.  Also, the video was a good one – again, slightly long, but since it is one the kids are familiar with I think that helps.  I swear I could hear a little voice singing along, but I couldn’t locate where it was coming from.

ATTENDANCE: 67!! (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

Eggs – Storybox

My library system has one central location and 9 branches.  To make storytime programming easier for all involved, we use storyboxes.  These are “storytimes in a box”.  They contain everything a storyteller would need for a successful storytime including books, videos, fingerplays and crafts.  Ideally, there should be enough variety that the box can be used for infants/toddlers, preschoolers, and lower elementary ages.   Here’s the latest storybox I put together for rotation.

Eggs – “What will hatch from these egg-cellent stories?”


Eggs 1 2 3: Who Will the Babies Be?
by Janet Halfmann
The Odd Egg by Emily Gravett
Chicken Big by Keith Graves


The Perfect Nest by Catherine Friend
Whose Chick are You? by Nancy Tafuri
The Golden Egg Book by Margaret Wise Brown


The Egg by M. P. Robertson
Guji Guji by Chih-Yuan Chen
Hunwick’s Egg by Mem Fox


Daisy and the Egg by Jane Simmons
The Cow that Laid an Egg by Andy Cutbill
Egg Drop by Mini Grey


First the Egg by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
How Kind! by Mary Murphy
Roly-Poly Egg by Kali Stileman


Duck and Goose by Tad Hills
Foxy and Egg by Alex Smith
The Happy Egg by Ruth Krauss


Little Chick, Little Chick
Little Chick Little Chick  Little Chick Little Chick 2
Pattern from Microsoft Clip Art
I got the idea for this one as a spin-off from the flannelboard Little Mouse Little Mouse

Hide the chick under one of the eggs before you place it on the flannelboard.  Place all eggs on the flannelboard.

Repeat this rhyme:
“Little chick, little chick,
Are you in the ___color___ egg?”

Life the egg of the flannelboard to see if the chick is behind it.  Repeat until you find the chick.  Hide it again, and place once more!

Ten Little Eggs
10 Eggs Flannelboard 1 Ten Eggs Flannelboard 2
Pattern and rhyme from Preschool Favorites by Diane Briggs on page 138.
(The animals in this photo aren’t in the correct order as the rhyme.)

There are ten little eggs
And what do we see
They’re about to crack open
“My goodness me,”
said Mother Hen.

The first egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a fuzzy, little duckling
Looking at me.

The second egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a little purple dinosaur
Looking at me.

The third egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a little turkey gobbler
Looking at me.

The fourth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a little fuzzy owl
Looking at me.

The fifth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a funny little platypus
Looking at me.

The sixth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a pretty little bluebird
Looking at me.

The seventh egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a snappy little alligator
Looking at me.

The eighth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a long-necked ostrich
Looking at me.

The ninth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a little green turtle
Looking at me.

The tenth egg cracks open
And what do we see
It’s a little yellow chicken
Looking at me.

“My baby!”
said the mother hen,
as happy as can be.

“Mommy!” said the chick.
“Did you meet all my sisters and brothers?”
“What!” shrieked Mother Hen,
“My goodness me.”

Three Eggs in a Basket
Three Eggs in a Basket Flannelboard Three Eggs in a Basket Flannelboard 2
Pattern and story found in Mother Goose’s Playhouse by Judy Sierra on page 62.

Five little eggs (fingers on one hand)
And five little eggs (fingers on second hand)
Are 10 little eggs you see (wiggle fingers)
Break their shells and what do you have? (clap)
Ten little chickens as yellow as can be. (wiggle fingers)

Little Egg
Once there was a little egg
That jumped down to the floor
It started rolling all around
Then rolled right out the door.

Little egg, roll, roll, roll,
Roll all around
Little egg roll, roll, roll
All across the ground.

Eggs in a nest
Here’s an egg in a nest up in a tree.
(make fist with right hand and place in palm of cupped left hand)
What’s inside? What can it be?
(shrug shoulders)
Peck, peck, peck,
Peep, peep, peep.
Out hatches a little bird,
(Wiggle fingers or fisted hand)
Cute as can be!
(from Child Fun)

If You Like Your Eggs Scrambled
(Tune: Happy & You Know It)
If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands
If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands
Yes, they’re yummy and they’re yellow
So you’ll be a happy fellow
If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands

If you like your eggs fried, jump up high…
If you want bacon with your eggs, wiggle your legs…
If you want toast instead, nod your head (Mmm-hmm)…
(from Storytime Source Page)

I’m a Little Birdie
(tune “I’m a Little Teapot”)
I’m a little birdie (crouch down as if inside egg)
In my shell
Trying to crack it open
Peck, peck scratch! (pecking motion)
When I crack it open,
Out I’ll pop. (Pop Up)
And spread my wings (hands in armpits and flap)
And tweet, tweet, tweet.
(From Preschool Favorites by Diane Briggs)

I Love Eggs
(Tune: Frere Jacques)
I love eggs, I love eggs
Yum, yum, yum ; Yum, yum, yum
Scrambled, boiled or fried, any way I’ve tried
Yum, yum, yum ; Yum, yum, yum
(from: Storytime Source Page)

Five Eggs and Five Eggs
Five eggs and five eggs, that makes ten (hold up 2 hands)
Sitting on top is the mother hen. (fold one hand over the other)
Crackle, crackle, crackle; what do I see? (clap 3 times)
Ten fluffy chickens, as yellow as can be! (hold up and wiggle ten fingers)

I’m a Little Chickie
(Tune: I’m a Little Teapot)
I’m a little chickie, (crouch down inside your egg)
Ready to hatch,
Pecking at my shell,(Pecking motion)
Scratch, scratch, scratch! (scratching motion)
When I crack it open,
Out I’ll jump (jump out of shell)
Fluff my feathers,
Cheep! Cheep! Cheep!
(from: Storytime Planners)

Unhatched Egg
Make a noise like a rooster. (Crow)
Make a noise like a hen. (Cluck)
Make a noise like a chick. (Peep)
Make a noise like an unhatched egg. (Silence)
And now you’re ready to listen to the next story!
(from: Storytime Planners)

Red Hen Red Hen
(Tune: Baa Baa Black Sheep)
Red hen, red hen, have you eggs from me?
Yes, sir. Yes, sir. A lot you see.
One to hard boil.
Another one to fry.
One to scramble.
And eggs to dye.
Red Hen, red hen, have you eggs for me?
Yes, sir. Yes, sir a whole lot you see.
(from: Storytime Planners)

I’m A Little Chick
(Tune: “I’m a Little Teapot”)
I’m a little chick inside an egg
I’m always sleeping – snoring away
Soon you’ll hear a pecking, pecking sound
The egg will crack and out I’ll pop.
(from: Preschool Education)


Who is in the Egg? Lift the Flap Page
Who is in the Egg Craft1
Who is in the Egg Craft2
I made the bottom page of this craft in Microsoft Word with clip art illustrations.  Then, using the shape too, I created an oval that was large enough in size to cover the illustrations.

To prepare this craft have 5 eggs cut out for each child you think will attend the storytime.  (All eggs are the same size and shape so it doesn’t matter which egg goes where.)  Have the children color in the animals and decorate the eggs.  Then clue one egg over each animal, using just one stripe of glue away and fold the egg to create a “lift-the-flap” effect for each animal.

Hatched Egg Craft
Hatched Egg Craft 1 Hatched Egg Craft 2 Hatched Egg Craft 3

I used Word clip art to find the image of a duck or a chicken.  Then I free-handed an egg large enough to cover the duck.  I used a Sharpie to draw a thick jagged line to make it look like the egg “cracked” towards the bottom of the egg.

Have children color the chick or duck and the egg from the templates provided.  Then cut down the middle of the “crack in the egg” so that it looks broken.  Punch a brad through one end of the egg, so that it can open and close.  Tape the bird on the inside so that he “hatches” when the egg is opened.