Thursday, January 29, 2015

Storytime: Pigs

Age: 2-5 years
Time: 30 minutes + play and craft

I seriously had this storytime planned for three weeks before I could actually use it. The first week I ended up getting a bad cold, and while I had lots of energy by storytime day, I had no voice. So I did a music & movement program instead so I didn't have to talk. The second week was really bad weather so only one kid showed up and he didn't want to do storytime with just me. Finally I was able to use it!

1) I use the same opening and closing songs each week. Click here to see what I do.

2) If You Give a Pig a Pancake - Laura Numeroff
You can't go wrong with Laura Numeroff's "If You Give a..." books. Unless it's about a cat. For some reason I don't like that one.

3) 5 Little Pigs flannel
I found this little rhyme at Sunflower Storytime (originally from Roving Fiddlehead). I already had five pink pigs cut out of felt, and so it was really easy to add brown marker "mud" on one side of them!

Five lit­tle pigs rolled in the mud (roll hands)
Squishy, squashy, felt so good! (make squishing motion with hands)
The farmer took one piggy out. (take one off board)
“Oink, Oink, oink,” the pig did shout! (cup hands around mouth, then put pig back clean side up)

(Con­tinue with four, three, two, until…)

No lit­tle pigs rolled in the mud.
They all looked so clean and good.
The farmer turned his back and then,
Those pigs rolled in the mud again! (turn all pigs to dirty side again)

4) The Tail of a Pig 
Found this one from The Storytime Lady. To the tune of "The Wheels on the Bus."

The tail of a pig curls round and round (circle finger round and round)
round and round, round and round.
The tail of a pig curls round and round
All through the mud. 

The mouth of a pig goes oink, oink, oink
 (put hand in front of mouth like a snout and “oink”!)

The hooves of a pig go run, run, run
(pretend like you are running)

The ears of a pig go twitch, twitch, twitch
(put hands up by ears and wiggle them back and forth)

The snout of a pig goes root, root, root
(get down on hands and knees and act like you are rooting through the mud with your nose - explain to kids what rooting means!)

5) Huff & Puff - Claudia Rueda
I told the kids and parents that there are lots of books out there with a story about three little pigs, and this is just one of them. I like how it's simple and interactive - when we got to each huffing and puffing page I walked the book around to the dozen kids we had and let them blow on the page.

6) Old MacDonald Had a Farm
I used my finger puppets to do this song. We started with the pig (obviously), then ended with the chicken to transition into the next song.

7) Song - I Know a Chicken - Laurie Berkner
I've been doing this with my 0-2 yr class each week, but the older group really got into the song today! I'll have to use it with them more often. I've started giving a smiley face stamp on the kids' hands when they return their shaky egg to me.

8) The Long-Nosed Pig - Keith Faulkner
What kid doesn't like a good pop-up book? And the adults really seemed to enjoy this story of how the pig got his short nose.

9) I use the same opening and closing songs each week. Click here to see what I do.

10) Playtime/Craft
I brought out the blocks and instruments again. For the table craft I printed an outline of a pig on cardstock. The kids colored the pig with crayons, then I had brown paint for them to make their pig muddy.

Other pigs ideas:
Pigs to the Rescue - John Himmelman
Happy Pig Day! - Mo Willems
Z-Z-Zoink! - Bernard Most
I'm a Pig - Sarah Weeks
Little Oink - Amy Krouse Rosenthal
See How They Grow: Pig - Mary Ling (non-fiction)
Piggy Pie Po - Audrey & Don Wood

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Storytime: Blue

Age: 2-5 years
Time: 30 minutes + play

This was our first Storytime of the winter/spring session. I did a color one week each month in the fall, and we're continuing the pattern.
I even dressed up for the theme today. :)

1) I use the same opening and closing songs each week. Click here to see what I do.

I like the simple rhymes in this book. The kids got a kick out of the end when I showed them I had blue socks on too!

3) Five Little Bluebirds
I found a bag with five cardstock bluebirds attached to craft sticks, along with this rhyme. The kids held up five fingers to start, and put one finger down each verse, while I held the sticks. We counted how many birds/fingers were left each time.

Five little blue birds, hopping by my door
One went to build a nest, and then there were four.

Four little blue birds singing joyfully
One got out of tune, and then there were three.

Three little blue birds, and what should one do, 
But go in search of dinner, leaving only two.

Two little blue birds singing for fun
One flew away, and then there was one.

One little blue bird sitting in the sun
He took a little nap, and then there was none.

4) Shape Monster flannel
I had enough blue squares to give every kid one, plus another color/shape. We went through all the colors until only blue was left, and it was fun when they all came rushing up to put their blue ones on.

5) Blue Chicken - Deborah Freedman
I really like the images in this book, and the blue stands out so well. Don't forget to check out the inside of the back cover for what the chickens got into next!

6) Song - I Know a Chicken - Laurie Berkner
Any easy transition from the previous book. Lots of kids chose blue eggs.

7) Song & Rhyme Cube
I didn't use this at all in the fall session, and want to do it more now. It's an easy way to use up a few more minutes of time, and expose kids to classic songs and nursery rhymes that wouldn't otherwise "fit" with a weekly theme. This week we rolled I'm a Little Teapot, Five Little Monkeys, and If You're Happy and You Know It.

8) Little Blue Truck - Alice Schertle
Who doesn't love Little Blue Truck? And none of my kids had seen his books before! They loved it.

9) I use the same opening and closing songs each week. Click here to see what I do.

10) Playtime/Craft
I brought out the blocks and instruments again. For the table craft I had cardstock and little bowls of blue fingerpaint. 

Other blue ideas:
Blue Sky - Audrey Wood (I used this in my 0-2 yr old group)
It Looked Like Spilt Milk - Charles G. Shaw (I have a flannel that goes with it)
The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse - Eric Carle (this would be great to make a flannel for)
Blue Goose - Nancy Tafuri
Baby Bear Sees Blue - Ashley Wolff
Grumpy Bird - Jeremy Tankard
What's the Matter Bunny Blue? - Nicola Smee
Little Blue Truck Leads the Way - Alice Schertle

This post does contain Amazon Affliate links. Purchases you make help support The Lion is a Bookworm a little bit without changing the cost to you!

Friday, January 2, 2015

How I Resolve to Rock in 2015

I'm a couple days late to the party, but Storytime Underground has put out a challenge for us to create some professional goals for 2015. My husband and I create a goal jar around this time of year for us and our family, so branching out and setting some goals for my job is a natural next step, right?

1. Blog consistently, and about more than just storytime plans.
During 12 weeks in the fall, 12 weeks in the winter/spring, and 6 weeks in the summer, I've done a fairly decent job at recording my weekly storytime plans. It keeps track of things for me, and I know I search lots of other blogs for ideas when creating my plans so hopefully what I post will help others too. But during storytime breaks (like now!) my blogging really slacks off. I want to try and post at least once a week, all year-round.

When I checked my stats and tags, I have written 130 posts so far, and 58 of those have been storytime plans. When I take out the 33 posts I wrote for the 31 Days of Writing challenge in October, 60% of my posts are only storytime plans. I want to try and decrease that percentage even more, by writing about other stuff too.

2. Do the 31 Days of Writing challenge again in October
I really enjoyed having something simple yet specific to write about every single day for a whole month. I'd like to do the exact same thing as last October, where I write short picture book reviews about new books that have come out in the previous year.

3. Finish weeding chapter books
I've come to realize that weeding in the children's area at my library hasn't been done for a looooong time. Over the last two years, during storytime/programming breaks, I've worked my way through EJ (picture books), lightly through 000-300s, hard-core through 921 (biographies), and almost all through 596-599 (animals). Last August I did some shifting and re-arranging of chapter books, which resulted in lightly weeding K-Z (based solely on condition). This section is our most tightly packed, and with good reason -- I've found 100+ year old books on the shelf! At a minimum I need to weed A-J on condition, and I really should go through the entire section and weed based on circs too.

4. Professional development - attend more workshops and conferences
Because I don't have a library science degree, I am learning A LOT as I go in this job. Between everyday experience and online reading (yay for Storytime Underground and SO many other great youth services blogs!) I am slowly getting up to speed in the library world. But nothing beats face-to-face conversations and presentations and discussions like what happens in a workshop or conference. In 2014 I attended three small, local workshops about things like Summer Reading and Storytime 101. Looking ahead to 2015 I'm already super excited about Spring Institute and MIKidLib Unconference, as well as smaller workshops put out by my co-op.

5. Personally read 36 books
It may not seem like very much, but I checked my Goodreads and discovered I'd only read 24 books in all of 2014. Granted, I read things like Harry Potter and Eragon which are huge books. But I do work outside of the home 30 hours a week, and have a home to clean and food to cook and a young family to be with. So I've officially made my challenge for Goodreads to up my reading from 2 books a month to 3. And note, these do not include the picture books I might read to my kids or for storytime or as new ones come in to the library - these 36 books are only the ones I'll read for myself (I love Jessica's post on tips to help you read more often, even if you have little kids! I plan to try a lot of these!)

I'm sure other things will come to mind, like increase Summer Reading participation and plan more teen events, but the five points above are what I feel really passionate about right now. What are your goals for the upcoming year? If you need ideas, Lisa has a really good list of goals to consider for all levels of expertise!