Thursday, February 28, 2013

Go Green! St. Patrick's Day

I love St. Patrick's day!  It's so much fun!  When I taught in a church preschool I could tell about the young boy, Patrick, kidnapped and taken from his family.  God helped him to escape and go home to his family in Britain and later to return to Ireland as a missionary.    He used the shamrock to explain about the Trinity of God. I have used this book  for telling about the real St. Patrick to preschoolers;  Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland by Tomie dePaola. I don't read the whole book or even show all the pages.  I'm dealing with 2 and 3 year olds.  I don't get into a lot of theology with preschoolers! ( I haven't used this book in my library storytime although I do offer it as part of my book display).
At my library storytime I do tell the children that the day is about a real person named Patrick that lived a long time ago in a place called Ireland.  Then I might say, "On St. Patrick's day we wear something green (they show me what they have that's green) and we talk about leprechauns and shamrocks."  I use this as a springboard to talk about what is real and what is pretend.  We count felt shamrocks and talk about the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  St. Patrick was real, shamrocks are real, rainbows are real too. Leprechauns and their tricks and  pots of gold are pretend!'s fun to pretend! 
I initially found this rhyme by Jean Warren in The Best of Totline Newsletter on page 81. I enlarged the patterns to make my leprechauns larger.  I used pellon and colored pencils and glue and glitter. Every self- respecting leprechaun has buckles that are shiny gold; not to mention shiny green shamrocks too!

Five Little Leprechauns
One day out walking,
I happened  to see
Five little leprechauns
Coming toward me.

They ran to a house.
They ran through the door.
I managed to catch one.
Then there were four.

Four little leprechauns
Climbed up a tree.
I caught another.
Then there were three.

Three little leprechauns
Hid in a shoe.
I caught another.
Then there were two.

Two little leprechauns
Started to run.
I caught another.
Then there was one.

One little leprechaun
Ran to his gold.
He grabbed some coins
Then stepped out bold.

“Give back my friends,
And I’ll give you this gold.”
So I set them all free.
Now my story is told!

Since I don't have a song that's about St. Patrick's day, I like to use Mr. Al's song, 'Please Stand Up' about the colors of our clothes.  Of course, I always suggest that we can pretend that we are wearing rainbow shirts or pants so that we can all 'stand up' on every color as the song goes along.
It's fun to pretend that we're all Irish for a day of Storytime Fun!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

One Potato...and more!

I've been thinking about St. Patrick's Day and this summer's library theme, "Dig Into Reading", and naturally I thought of potatoes!  I did a potato storytime several years ago and we all really enjoyed it!  I used Diana Pomeroy's One Potato and Potato Joe by Keith Baker.   I've recently discovered this adorable book, Pigs Love Potatoes by Anika Denise, and would like to find a way to use it too!  Of course we'll do the traditional One potato, Two potatoes rhyme and I found a cute potato chant at Yakaberry that I want to use too.  I really didn't find any other potato rhymes so I made one up to go with some felt potatoes that I had made for a simple count to 10 activity. 

Digging Potatoes  
by Kathryn Roach

Let’s go out to the garden and dig in the ground,
Down in the dirt 10 potatoes will be found!

10 brown potatoes growing so fine,
The farmer dug one up and that left nine.

Nine brown potatoes will be yummy on my plate!
The farmer dug one up and that left eight.

Eight brown potatoes in a line so even,
The farmer dug one up and that left seven.

Seven brown potatoes for my potato pancake mix,
The farmer dug one up and that left six!

Six brown potatoes have grown to a good size.
The farmer dug one up and that left five.

Five brown potatoes now,... there used to be more!
The farmer dug one up and that left four.

Four brown potatoes that have eyes but cannot see!
The farmer dug one up and that left three.

Three brown potatoes to add to the veggie stew,
The farmer dug one up and that left two.

Two brown potatoes that never saw the sun!
The farmer dug one up and that left one.

One brown potato, the last one of the bunch
The farmer dug it up and baked it for his lunch!

I really 'dig' Storytime fun!  

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Crown me!

I've been wanting to do a King,Queen/crown theme for awhile but couldn't seem to pull it all into a complete storytime.  But!...  Ta da! I think it's ready now! This is my chance to use a favorite of mine, King Bidgood's in the Bathtub by Audrey and Don Wood.  I could use Lullabyhullaballo by Mick Inkpen or King Jack and the Dragon by Peter Bentley, illustrated by one of my favorites, Helen Oxenbury. Or...I can tell the story of the Princess and the Pea and use this cute idea from Read, Sarah, Read. If I tell the Princess and the Pea, I can use this adorable idea from The Voices Inside My Headphones!  I also have a flannelboard story that I've written HERE and I made flannelboard pieces to tell it. I didn't want to make people so I made symbols for the people in my story. I use a lot of glitter, sequins and 'jewels'.  You know those royals just love shiny things!

I plan on using the mirror, shield, wizard hat and dragon's cave for a game; "Where's the king's crown?" similar to the 'Little Mouse hiding in the color house' game.  There's going to be a lot of Royal Storytime Fun!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Animals in the circus

Here's the next installment of flannel board rhymes about the circus. There are lots of animal acts at the circus that lend themselves to being great flannel board rhymes.  I have a Sizzix diecut machine and a diecut of a seal and ball that I used to make a flannelboard set.  I used a Google image to make my matching colored tubs for the seals to balance on.  I cut out 10 black seals and 10 different colored balls and matching tubs.  I added red glitter to their noses, a black sequin for their eyes and a piece of wired ribbon on the tubs.  I had the diecut and wanted to use it but didn't have a rhyme, so I made one up:

Ten Circus Seals
Ten circus seals ready for a trick
which color ball will each one pick?
Let's match them up one by one
Circus seals are so much fun!

I put up the colored tubs first and we say the colors as I do.  Then we put up the seals and count them as we put them on the board. Then I say the first part of the rhyme.  Then I hold up a colored ball and let the children name the color and I put the ball on the seal's back flippers or nose to match the tub. If the group is small enough I can allow the children to take turns doing this. Then I say the last part of the rhyme:

Ten circus seals ready to rest
They have the color ball that they like the best.
We matched them up one by one
Circus seals are so much fun!

I tweaked this rhyme a little:
Five Circus Elephants 
Five big elephants - oh, what a sight,
Swinging their trunks from left to right!
Four are followers, and one is the king.
They all walk around in the circus ring.

*(take the last elephant off the board)
One circus elephant - oh, what a sight,
Swinging his trunk from left to right!
One circus elephant marching round the ring.
All the others left and so did the King!

I used a diecut and embellished them with puff paint, felt, glitter, sequins and the king's crowning plume; metallic pipe cleaner.  I can never leave well enough alone! Glitter makes everything more fun! Circus animals are a lot of Fun with Friends at Storytime!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Clowning Around

The circus is in town where I live!  Even though I've pretty much outgrown the circus, I enjoy presenting a circus themed storytime every year.  The circus theme is an opportunity to do clown flannel board rhymes and monkey rhymes and seal rhymes and tiger rhymes and elephant rhymes... Whoa! I can get carried away in a hurry!  I have a couple of clown ideas to share today.  The first is the flannel board story, Clancy the Clown. The story I've been using was given to me by a coworker.  I have found several versions online but I can't find an original source. I found one version here, but the one closest to my version is here. I made Clancy's hair with variegated color yarn and a LOT of Aleen's Tacky glue.  I also couldn't resist adding some glitter to Clancy's big red nose!  He's always a big hit!

I also have a song/activity that I use with shapes. I hand out felt shapes and tell the children to listen for the shape that they are holding in their hand. Then they come up and add it to the board.  They love this activity. The younger children get help from their caregiver or sometimes from the preschooler sitting beside them!
♫Send in the Clowns
tune of "This Old Man"
The circus clown
Came to town,
Wearing (circles*) all around..
There were (circles) on his head
And (circles) on his toes...
He wears (circles) wherever he goes! 

Change the *shape each time you sing the song as the children bring up their shape and add it to the clown's funny costume.  I did find it here with some other really great ideas! I made my clown out of pellon and added felt hair and painted his nose with shiny fabric paint. Don't ya just love the multicolored pom pom on his hat!  I also added velcro to the back under the pom pom, and under the hands and shoes. He gets handled a lot by the children and I wanted him to stay on the board while we were playing.  We all celebrate his cuteness when he's covered in shapes!
*UPDATE* 1-8-2017 -  I was going through my felt sets and found this cute clown craft that is a Home Extension. He's made of shapes that are easily recognized by the kiddos. This is an opportunity for caregivers to talk (ECRR) with their kiddo about shapes and spatial concepts of middle, over, under, above, and below as they assemble Mr. Clown.
So much Storytime Fun!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Little Birdies

When my grandson J.W. was 16 months old he called birds, "chirp, chirps". Toddlers seem to be fascinated with birds. These little finger puppet birds have been a big hit with the preschoolers that come to storytime. I started with the classic Two Little Blackbirds rhyme and with some tweaking ended up with Two Little Blue birds and one color led to another... I've been thinking about other animal fingerpuppets with this rhyme also.
Perhaps, Two little green frogs sitting near a rock
one named Brittany and one named Brock.
Hop away Brittany, hop away Brock... You get the idea!   I think it could be a lot of fun!  

Here are my finger puppets and rhymes. I think the feather adds such a debonair touch to the little rascals!  I added this cute penguin version from here and here

Two Little Blue birds sitting on a hill.
One named Jack, and one named Jill.
Fly away Jack, fly away Jill,
Come back Jack, come back Jill
Two Little Blue birds sitting on a hill.
One named Jack, and one named Jill.

Two little red birds sitting on a wall...named Pam and Paul
Two little yellow birds sitting in a tree...named Doug and Dee
Two little purple birds sitting on a stone...named Jeff and Joan
Two little green birds flying to a cloud...named Quiet and LOUD!
Two little pink birds hopping on the ground... named Up and Down.
Two little orange birds flying in the air...named Cliff and Clare.

"Chirp, Chirp!"    It's so much fun at Storytime!
For my repost on Dec. 16, 2016 on Flannel Friday RoundupCheck out the wonderful resources on the Flannel Friday Pinterest Boards. Here's the link for the official Flannel Friday blog for more info! 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Valentine's Day storytime fun

It's February! Love is in the air.  Valentine's Day is a great time to emphasize all the great picture books about friendship, love and good manners during storytime and during the whole month!  I have a cute flannelboard rhyme to share too. 

One of the books I want to share is Doodle Bites: A Tilly and Friends Book by Polly Dunbar. This is a fun way to talk about 'no biting' and being forgiving.  Another book that's not really a Valentine's book but is about love is The Secret by Lindsay Barrett George.  The children always enjoy following the progress of Mr. Snail's secret from critter to critter until it reaches Mrs. Snail. 

The week of Valentine's Day I'll be using Valentine Day books, One Heart: A Valentine Counting Book by Maryann Cocca-Leffler and Be Mine, Be Mine, Sweet Valentine by Sarah Weeks. 
Here is one of the Valentine Flannel rhymes I'm planning on sharing at storytime:

Five Cupcakes for Valentine’s Day!

Five cupcakes in the bakery shop
Vanilla frosting with a heart on top
Along came a boy with a penny one day
Bought a cupcake and took it away

Four cupcakes in the ....

One cupcake in the bakery shop
Vanilla frosting with a heart on top
I came along with a penny one day
Bought that cupcake and took it away!

No cupcakes in the bakery shop
Vanilla frosting with a heart on top
Each was bought to give away
To a happy friend for Valentine’s Day!

I had been wanting to make this really cute cupcake flannel set that I had seen on Pinterest from Money Saving Mom.  So when I saw this adorable rhyme from Jane at her  blogspot Piper Loves the Library the wheels started turning.  I adapted the rhyme a little and made these cupcakes for my Valentine storytime theme.
Can't wait to share the Fun with Friends at Storytime!

*for the repost on 1-9-15, The rest of the Flannel Friday roundup is @ Libraryland