Friday, June 27, 2014

Storytime: Weather

Age: 2-5 years
Time: 30 minutes

Hurray for the beginning of Summer Reading! Our Pre-Reader group is our most-highly-sought-after program. We offer storytime each week, with two time slots for families to choose between, and they always max out on registrations. We end up with 60 kids total ages 2-5, while our 1st-6th grade group has 80-100 and our teens have around 25. In the future I'm hoping to really work at encouraging the kids to come back as they get older!

Sticking with the Fizz Boom Read! CSLP science theme, I have chosen seven topics for our summer. We opened with Weather.

1) These Are My Glasses - Laurie Berkner
We used this as my opening song all last summer and last school year, and the kids seem to like it so much that I decided to not change it. I start by asking them to show me their glasses and their book so that they remember the signs. We sing it through twice, then I ask them to put their "books" in their lap while we read our first book.

These are my glasses (make the letter o with each hand)
And this is my book (hands together)
I put on my glasses (put "glasses" over eyes)
And open up the book (open book hands)
Now I read read read (hold book up in front of face like reading)
And I look look look (put glasses over eyes and look around room)
I put down my glasses and… (lower glasses)
WHOOP! Close up the book. (clap as if closing a book quickly)

2) Hello Sun - Dayle Ann Dodds
A simple little story of a girl and her cat who want to go outside but keep needing to come back in for different clothes because of the changing weather.

3) What's the weather? 
I made a weather chart similar to this one. I hope to incorporate talking about the current weather each week this summer. We sang this little song to go with it, to the tune of Oh My Darling Clementine:

What's the weather, what's the weather,
What's the weather everyone?
Is it windy, is it cloudy, is there rain, or is there sun?

4) Mr. Sun - Raffi
It has been a rainy week, so we transitioned to hoping the sun will come out, and singing this song to help him along. I used a combination of motions from Jbrary and Raffi himself.

Oh Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun (make big sun with arms over head)
Please shine down on me (wiggle fingers and come down, kind of like rain actually)
Oh Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun (make big sun with arms over head)
Hiding behind a tree (hide eyes with hands)

These little children are asking you (point at self with thumbs)
To please come out so we can play with you (hands make "come here" motion)
Oh Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun (make big sun with arms over head)
Please shine down on me (wiggle fingers and come down)

5) Little Cloud - Eric Carle
A small cloud changes into different shapes. I let the kids tell me each time what they thought it looked like.

6) Itsy Bitsy Spider
The previous book ended with it raining, so I told the kids they knew a song about rain. We sang it the traditional way, then also did the "great big hairy spider" (in a really deep voice) and the "teensy weensy spider" (in a high squeaky voice).

7) Sounds of rain activity
I told the kids we were going to make it sound like rain inside our room. I had them just watch and imitate me:

Rub hands together
Pat the floor with hands
Clap hands
Stand up and stomp while clapping
Clap hands
Pat the floor with hands
Rub hands together

I then had fun jumping between the really quiet and the really loud and back again. :)

8) A Rainbow of My Own - Don Freeman
I paperclipped a couple of pages together in this one, knowing it was our last book and our first storytime, the kids would be getting a little antsy. It led into our craft, where the kids got to take home a rainbow of their own!

10) Rainbow Craft
Construction paper (pre-cut), glue, and cotton balls. Easy peasy.
My 4-year-old daughter's version

Other weather ideas:
Kipper's Book of Weather - Mick Inkpen
Colors of Weather - Laura Purdie Salas
The Wind Blew - Pat Hutchins
Storm is Coming - Heather Tekavec
In the Rain with Baby Duck - Amy Hest
Baby Bear Sees Blue - Ashley Wolff
Just a Thunderstorm - Gina Mayer
It Looked Like Spilt Milk - Charles Shaw
Snowy Day - Ezra Jack Keats
The First Day of Winter - Denise Fleming
All You Need for a Snowman - Alice Schertle

Monday, June 16, 2014

Bulletin Board: Star Scientists

In honor of our Summer Reading Program (Fizz, Boom, Read!), I wanted to make my #2 bulletin board something science-y (#1 has info about our summer programs). I wanted it to be interesting and simple to assemble, and something that could stay up all summer long. While searching Pinterest for science-themed bulletin boards, I came across this page from The Teacher Garden. It was perfect!! Mrs. K even had all of her biography sheets available for free download (thank you!!!!). I printed six and matted them on construction paper to put up on my board. I wished I had space to put all 10 scientists up, but I didn't want the board to get too busy.
We have some great display space by our corner fireplace.
Trying to make it personal. :) 
Now I can sit back and not have to do anything with my bulletin boards until fall! Bring on summer reading!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bulletin Board: Where will reading take you?

Here is a really simple bulletin board I made, good for any time of the year. I saw the idea in a few places on Pinterest (such as here and here). I used butcher paper to make the poles, and printed the place names in Publisher.
Where will reading take you?

The Shire
100 Acre Wood
The Emerald City
Camp Half-Blood

Many of the books have been made into movies, and so I could Google search "Hunger Games font" and find a free font to download and use. 

Do you know what book each of these places is from?? :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Bulletin Board: Summer Reading 2014

Here is the bulletin board I created to advertise our Summer Reading Program events:

The "Summer Reading" heading was taken from a neat website I found called You can enter any text you want and it will give a PDF or PNG file of the periodic table letters in those words.

The white pages describe each level of summer reading (the adult display is upstairs), with the special events each group will have during the summer.

I used the clipart images from the CSLP cd, printed in color on regular paper, and the two large posters were ordered from CSLP/Upstart.

It's something simple I can keep up all summer long!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Judging Books by their Covers: Eragon

Jessica at Quirky Bookworm hosts Bookworm Fridays on the first Friday of each month, and June features a "Judging Books By Their Covers" linkup. Here's my contribution!

A year or two ago I was searching my library's ebooks for something new to read. I'm a fan of fantasy books like The Lord of the Rings, and when I came across Eragon it caught my eye.

One Boy… One Dragon… A World of Adventure. When Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered, and he is thrust into a perilous new world of destiny, magic, and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands …

I read the first two books in the series, then put it aside for awhile since they're so long (think Harry Potter, but much more in-depth and descriptive). Just a week or so ago I was in need of something new to read again and was craving some fantasy, and decided to pick up where I'd left off and start book three.

Since I'd only ever seen one cover of this book (see the 2003 hardcover edition below), I thought it would be fun to search for others for this linkup post. And boy did I discover some fun stuff!! First off, there is actually an entire wiki dedicated to this series. I found multiple book covers as well as the history of the series. I had no idea Christopher Paolini wrote the first draft of Eragon when he was only 15! His family self-published the book first, then a famous author came across a copy of it and took it to his publisher. It then became a NYT bestseller.

So which cover is your favorite? If you saw all of these together on the shelf, which one would you reach for?
2003, hardcover edition.
The paperback edition features
a closeup of Saphira's face.
Original, self-published cover, 2002
10th anniversary collector's edition
Japanese edition
Swedish edition
Vietnamese edition
I found the following covers through a Google image search, it appears a college design class had the assignment of re-designing the cover to this book! What a neat idea!

And of course, one of the movie posters. I haven't seen it, but from what I've read the movie is "loosely" based on the book. Come on people, if you're going to create a movie with the same name and plot line as a book, you should try to make it as close to the book as you can! If I remember correctly, I've heard that in the movie, Saphira isn't even blue.

I think my favorite covers out of all of these are the first of the design class -- I like the blue egg and the sunrise, it sets the stage for where the story begins -- and the original edition designed by the author. The collector's edition is pretty sweet too.