Construction – eStorytime

In August we had the last of our Summer eStorytime series.  I realized that I already had a few different apps on construction, so I decided to use some of those and build an eStorytime around that theme.

Opening Slide on Keynote:
Slide1 edited

Welcome Song

Cranes reach up. (reach up)
Cranes reach down. (reach down)
Cranes reach out, (reach straight out)
And all around. (turn around)

taken from Pre-K Fun

APP - Build and Play Crane1APP - Build and Play Crane2APP - Build and Play Crane3APP - Build and Play Crane4APP - Build and Play 3d logo
Build and Play 3D from Croco Studios ( iOS, Samsung, Android)

We started storytime by building a construction vehicle – a crane!  I was a little worried at first, because we had more kids than there were pieces to put in the puzzle, but then at they end when the crane was finished you could play with the controls on it, so the kids who didn’t get to put a piece on the crane did that.

App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day1App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day2App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day3App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day4App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day5 App - Sleepy Moles Moving Day Icon

Sleepy Mole’s Moving Day from Ginger Whale illustrated by Melanie Matthews

Mole is sleeping when he is rudely awakened by construction workers who have flooded light into his home — and now it’s too bright for him.  So, he sets off to find a new place to sleep.  At this point in the app, users are able to choose-their-own-adventure type app, which kids being able to pick from different directions on the screen to choose where Mole should dig.  After digging for a while, Mole eventually finds a place to sleep and the story ends.

(to the tune of: “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush”)
This is the way we pound our nails,
pound our nails, pound our nails.
This is the way we pound our nails,
So early in the morning.

Other verses:
saw our wood
use a screwdriver
drill a hole
stack the bricks
paint the walls

(rhyme taken from Pre-K Fun)

App - Sago Mini Toolbox 8App - Sago Mini Toolbox 1App - Sago Mini Toolbox Icon
App - Sago Mini Toolbox 2App - Sago Mini Toolbox 3App - Sago Mini Toolbox 4
App - Sago Mini Toolbox 5App - Sago Mini Toolbox 6App - Sago Mini Toolbox 7
Sago Mini Toolbox ($2.99; iOS, Kindle, Android)

There are two different ways to play using this app.  When the app first comes up, you can choose to build different things with Dog, or just play with the different tools with Bird.  We chose to build with Dog, and the kids had fun doing different actions to make Dog a house, and Gnome a Basketball hoop.

Johnny Works with One Hammer
Johnny works with one hammer
(move one hand up and down as if using a hammer)
one hammer, one hammer.
Johnny works with one hammer,
Then he works with two.

Johnny works with two hammers
(move two hands up and down as if using a hammer)
two hammers, two hammers.
Johnny works with two hammers,
Then he works with three.

Johnny works with three hammers
(move two hands up and down as if using a hammer and stamp one foot)
three hammers, three hammers.
Johnny works with three hammers,
Then he works with four.

Johnny works with four hammers
(move two hands up and down as if using a hammer and stamp two feet)
four hammers, four hammers.
Johnny works with four hammers,
Then he works with five.

Johnny works with five hammers
(move two hands up and down. stamp two feet, and nod head)
five hammers, five hammers.
Johnny works with five hammers,
Then he goes to sleep!

what-can-a-crane-pick-up-by-dotlich Slide5
What Can a Crane Pick Up? by Rebecca Kai Dotlich, illustrated by Mike Lowery

Little Builders from Fox & Sheep
(iOS, Android, Amazon; $2.99)

Little Builders opens on a scene where a lot of construction is taking place –  there are streets to sweep, buildings to paint, roofs to lay and more!  For this storytime, we choose to build a brick wall.  You have to lay down the mortar cement, and that put a brick down on top of that.  Of course, you can put down bricks without the cement, but your wall may not hold when a strong wind comes!  Each child got to put down a brick.

app-goodnight-goodnight-construction-site-1app-goodnight-goodnight-construction-site-2 app-goodnight-goodnight-construction-site-3app-goodnight-goodnight-construction-site-icon
Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker and Tom Lichtenheld from Oceanhouse Media ($3.99,iOS)


This book is based on the book of the same name.  Oceanhouse Media always does a faithful job of turning books into apps in a respectful, fun way.

MOVEMENT: “Storytime’s Over”*

app-sago-mini-trucks-and-diggers-icon app-bizzy-bear-builds-a-house-logo app-dr-panda-handyman-icon

APP: Sago Mini – Trucks and Diggers (iOS, Kindle, Android; $2.99)
APP: Nosy Crow – Bizzy Bear Builds a House (iOS, $3.99)
APP: Dr. Panda Handyman (iOS, Kindle, Android; $2.99)


I did this storytime a while ago, so I don’t remember too many pointers that I wanted tell myself.  I do remember, though, that I need to watch my time more carefully when doing an eStorytime.  It takes a lot of time to go around the room and have the kids participate, so I often run over and what is supposed to be a half hour storytime turns more into 45-50 minutes.

I had a good size group for this one.

ATTENDANCE: 15 people (children and adults)

*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

Please note: App prices were correct at the time of writing this blog, but may have changed since. All prices taken from the iOS app price.  There may also be changes to available platforms for apps as well.

Special thanks to Digital Storytime for their app reviews by subject, that make putting together a themed eStorytime much easier.

Bikes – Preschool Storytime

I’m trying to catch up on blogging about some of the storytimes I did this summer. Here’s one I presented on August 27 about bikes.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Everybody and Say Hello”  by Kathy Reid-Naiman from Sally Go ‘Round the Sun: Songs and rhymes from the parent-child Mother Goose program

Bike on, Bear! written by Cynthea Liu, illustrated by Kristyna Litten

MOVEMENT: The Wheels on the Bike
(to the tune of: “The Wheels on the Bus”)
The wheels on the bike go round and round (roll hands over each other)
Round and round, round and round.
The wheels on the bike go round and round
All through the town.

Other Verses:
The pedals on the bike go up and down (move feet up and down)
The streamers on the bike go swish, swoosh, swish (move hands in a swishing motion)…
The bell on the bike goes ding, ding, ding (pretend to ring a bell)
The basket on the bike holds all the things (make arms into a circle like a basket in front of you)
The handles on the bike go left and right (pretend hands on handlebar, steer left and right)….

Rhyme taken from:  Scott, Barbara A.  1,000 Fingerplays & Action Rhymes: A Sourcebook and DVD. New York: Neal-Schuman. 2010.

MOVEMENT: My Wiggles*

If You Have a Color Bike
Flannelboard idea taken from Storytime Katie.

I started with laminated bike images of different colors with velcro on the back in a container.  Children came up and picked a bike.  I told them to look at the bike, and then come up when I called the right color.  So we sang this song:

If you have a red bike,
a red bike, a red bike,
If you have a red bike
bring it to the board.

Substitute different colors for red.

Then we counted the number of each color bike we had.

Katie says that she uses the tune of “The Muffin Man” when she sings this, but mine morphed a little into “Mary Wore Her Red Dress”.

New Red Bike! by James E. Ransome

the-story-about-ping-dvd duck-on-a-bike-by-shannon
“Duck on a Bike” from The Story About Ping …and Other Fine Feather Friends. Based on the book by David Shannon

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*

everyone-can-learn-to-ride-a-bicycle-by-raschka my-bike-by-barton off-we-go-by-hillenbrand froggy-rides-a-bike-by-london sally-jean-the-bicycle-queen-by-best big-boy-now-by-spinelli ben-rides-on-by-davies

Book: Everyone Can Learn to Ride a Bicycle by Chris Raschka
Book: My Bike by Byron Barton
Book: Off We Go! A Bear and Mole Story by Will Hillenbrand
Book: Froggy Rides a Bike by Jonathan London, illustrated by Frank Remkiewicz
Book: Sally Jean, the Bicycle Queen by Cari Best, pictures by Christine Davenier (more suited to school-aged kids)
Book: A Big Boy Now by Eileen Spinelli, illustrated by Megan Lloyd
Book: Ben Rides On by Matt Davies (better for school-aged kids)

Storytime Katie – Bikes! 
The Best Kids Book Site – Bike Craft Idea
Sturgis Kids – Bicycle Storytime
Susan M. Dailey – Bicycles
Library Village – Preschool Story Time – Bikes


Bikes was a fun theme.  I had tried a similar flannelboard asking kids to come up and put things on the board with toddlers, but it felt like it went much more smoothly with the preschoolers.

ATTENDANCE: 29 (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

Bears – Toddler Storytime

I filled in for our last storytime of our Summer session at the last-minute, so I just pulled this Bear storytime together quickly.

SONG: Welcome Song

MOVEMENT: “Clap Everybody and Say Hello” by Kathy Reid-Naiman from Sally Go ‘Round the Sun: Songs and rhymes from the parent-child Mother Goose program

Open Shut Them*

Oliver Finds His Way by Phyllis Root, illustrated by Christopher Denise

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

10 Teddy Bears


Bears Flannelboard logo

(to the tune of “Mary Had a Little Lamb”)
Grizzly bears are big and brown,
Big and brown, big and brown.
Grizzly bears are big and brown,
And live in the woods.

Polar bears are soft and white,
Soft and white, soft and white.
Polar bears are soft and white,
And live in the cold.

Teddy bears are just my size,
Just my size, just my size.
Teddy bears are just my size,
To cuddle with at night.

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

Bear & Hare: Where’s Bear? by Emily Gravett

“Follow the Leader” from Little Bear: Rainy Day Tales

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over


Book: Don’t Worry Bear by Greg Foley (or the other Bear books by Foley
Book: Old Bear by Kevin Henkes
Book: Bears on Chairs by Shirley Parenteau, illustrated by David Walker (or others in this series)
Book: Bear and Hare: Go Fishing by Emily Gravett

Bear & Hare: Where’s Bear? was the reason I decided to go with this theme for storytime.  When books in the Bear & Hare series came in, I thought they would be so perfect for Toddler storytime — and it worked really well!  Especially because I had the kids join in for the hide & seek countdown.

ATTENDANCE:  10 am:  44 people      11 am: 30 people

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

Bears – Infant Storytime

For a last minute fill-in, I decided to focus on bears.

MOVEMENT: Welcome Song*

MOVEMENT: “Clap Everybody and Say Hello” by Kathy Reid-Naiman from Sally Go ‘Round the Sun: Songs and rhymes from the parent-child Mother Goose program

MOVEMENT: Peek-a-Boo*

BOUNCE: Icky Bicky Soda Cracker*

Sleepy Bear
 by Lydia Dabcovich

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

Bear Went Over the Mountain
Bear Went Over the Mountain 1 Bear Went Over the Mountain 2
For more information on this flannel, see the post where I highlighted it for Flannel Friday.

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

Ben Loves Bear
 by David McPhail

MOVEMENT: Patty Cake

TICKLE: Round the World*

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

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

MOVEMENT: Storytime’s Over*


Book: Bear of My Heart by Joanne Ryder, illustrated by Margie Moore (This one may be a little long, but I think with the sweetness factor it may work well for infants).

I wasn’t sure if Ben Loves Bear would work well in a storytime setting, since it is a smaller board book. But, the story was so sweet that I couldn’t pass it up.  And I think the illustrations were large enough so that it carried.

ATTENDANCE: 40 people

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