A Horse of Course!

This week we read stories about horses!

Rhyme Cube:  Click here for description.

Sign Language:  Word of the day was “Horse

Opening Song:

“Open them, shut them,
Give a little clap!
Open them, shut them,
Now put them in your lap!”

First Book: Horses: Trotting! Prancing! Racing! by Patricia HubbellHorses: Trotting! Prancing! Racing!

Felt Board:  I Gave My Horse an Apple

horse apple

I gave my horse an apple, (pretend to give something)
And she gave me a neigh. (neigh)
I gave my horse a carrot, (pretend to give something)
And she moved her head this way. (move head up and down)
I gave my horse a sugar lump, (pretend to give something)
She gave me a smile. (smile big)
And then she took me for a ride,
For more than half a mile. (slap hands on thighs like galloping)

(credit: Storytime in a Box)

Fingerplay: 10 Galloping Horses

Ten galloping horses, (hold up ten fingers)
Came through town. (slap hands on legs like galloping)
Five were white, (hold up five fingers)
And five were brown. (hold up five fingers on other hand)
They galloped up, (slap up toward top of thighs)
They galloped down, (slap down toward knees)
Ten galloping horses, (hold up ten fingers)
Came through town. (slap hands on legs like galloping)

(credit: King County Library System)

Second Book:  Are You a Horse? by Andy RashAre You A Horse?

Activity:  Giddy-Up!

I had all the kids stand up and pretend to hold onto reins.  I told them to gallop as we sang (to the tune of the William Tell Overture):

“Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up-up-up!
Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up-up-up!
Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up-up-up!
WHOA, Horsie! ”  (we leaned back and paused on this part)

We sang the song a few times, getting faster and faster!

(credit: The Loudest Librarian)

Felt Board:  Colored Horses

horses color

I got this idea from Storytime Katie.  I laminated different colored horses, put a little velcro on the back, and gave one to each child.  I told them to wait until I called their color horse and then they could come up and put it on the board.  This is so hard for them!  It’s too exciting to wait! We did a similar activity last week with shells and this time they did honestly get a little better at waiting for their turn.  One little trick I do when a kid comes up with the wrong color is to say “Oh how cool! But your horse is yellow not blue.  Can you go show it to your grown-up until I call the yellow horses up?” This works some of the time!

Here’s the rhyme I came up with:

“If your horse is the color blue,
Gallop it on your shoe!
If you have a blue horse,
Come put it in the barn, of course!”

(yellow –  gallop it on your elbow
green – gallop it on your knee
purple – gallop it in a circle
red – gallop it on your head)

Third Book:  Clip-Clop by Nicola SmeeClip-Clop

Ukulele:  She’ll Be Coming Round the Mountain

horse uke

I printed out some clip art to go with each verse of the song and put it up on the wall before we sang.  We also counted the horses to make sure there were six!  The verses we sang were:

She’ll be coming round the mountain,…
She’ll be driving six white horses,…
She’ll be wearing pink pajamas,…
We’ll all come out and greet her,….

The chords I used can be found here.

I have no natural music ability and I make lots of mistakes but the kids seem to still enjoy it.  Jason Poole, a good friend and children’s librarian (who also happens to be a wonderful musician) told me that it’s good for kids to see you make mistakes.  It lets them know that adults aren’t perfect either and the important thing is to not give up!

Goodbye Song:

“Let’s tickle the clouds,
And tickle our toes,
And turn around,
And tickle our nose,
Reach down low,
Reach up high,
Storytime is over,
So wave goodbye!”

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To the Beach!

I can’t stand the snow anymore!  We’ve had 72.7 inches in Rochester this winter so far.  So I decided to go with a beach themed storytime.  I thought about putting out beach towels for the kids to sit on but I don’t own enough.  Maybe next time I’ll ask the parents to bring their own – BYOBT!

Rhyme Cube: Click here for description.

Sign Language:  Word of the day was “Beach” and we repeated it often.

Opening Song:
“Open them, shut them,
Give a little clap!
Open them, shut them,
Now put them in your lap!”

First Book: All You Need For a Beach by Alice Schertlehttps://i1.wp.com/img2.imagesbn.com/p/9780547564289_p0_v1_s260x420.JPG

Ukulele Song: I’ve been slowly learning how to play the ukulele and finally worked up the courage to try it out in some of my storytimes.  I know how to play the melody of Frere Jacques so I plucked it out while singing this version of the words:
“I see sea gulls
I see sea gulls,
At the beach,
At the beach,
Soaring, spinning, diving
Soaring, spinning, diving
At the beach,
At the beach.”

Felt Board:  5 Little Seashells

shells1

5 little seashells lying on the shore,
Swish! went the waves
and then there were four.

4 little seashells pretty as can be,
Swish! went the waves
and then there were three.

3 little seashells all pearly new,
Swish! went the waves
and then there were two.

2 little seashells lying in the sun,
Swish went the waves
and then there was one.

1 little seashell lying all alone,
I picked it up
and I took it home!

Second Book: Sea, Sand, and Me! by Patricia Hubbell

Song:

To the tune of Wheels on the Bus:
The waves on the sea go up and down, up and down, up and down
The waves on the sea go up and down all day long.
The shark in the sea goes snap, snap, snap…
The fish in the sea goes swish, swish, swish…
The boats on the sea go toot, toot, toot…

Felt Board: We’re Going to the Beach

beach

I added got the idea for this felt board (and the clipart!) from Storytime Secrets. I put the pieces on the board as I recited the song.  I paused each time I put another piece up so the kids could shout out the correct word.

We’re going to the beach,
We’re going to the beach.
I think we’ll see some flip-flops there!
We’re going to the beach.

We’re going to the beach,
We’re going to the beach.
I think we’ll see a castle there!
We’re going to the beach.

We’re going to the beach,
We’re going to the beach.
I think we’ll see a starfish there!
We’re going to the beach.

We’re going to the beach,
We’re going to the beach.
I think we’ll see a beach ball there!
We’re going to the beach.

We’re going to the beach,
We’re going to the beach.
I think we’ll see a seashell there!
We’re going to the beach.

Third Book: Beach Day by Karen Roosa

Felt Board:  So Many Seashells

Next I passed out different colored felt seashells to each child and recited the following rhyme:
“There are so many shells in the hot, hot, sand.
What color shell is in my hand?
If you have a (color) shell, come on up and put on the sand!”

This task is very difficult for the littlest kids.  They want to come up right away and put their shell on the board instead of waiting for their color to be called.  So that inevitably happens but it is good practice for them to try to wait their turn.  Whether they wait for their turn or not it’s fun and our board looked like this:

shells2

Upcoming Presentation

I’ll be speaking at an upcoming tech camp on the topic of apps and iPads in children’s services.  There will also be presentations on the Central Library of Rochester’s YOUmedia lab and developing a Minecraft program for teens.  If you’re in the Western NY area, I hope you can join us!  Here’s a detailed description of the presentations and a link to register:

The Emerging Technologies Committee of the Monroe County Library System would like to invite you to our February Tech Camp – Programming the Digital Way.  It will be held on Friday, February 7th from 2pm – 5pm at the Brighton Memorial Library.

This Tech Camp will be entirely dedicated to Children’s and Teen Technology Services.

Apps and eBooks in Storytimes and Library Programs
Tablets have been revolutionizing education, and libraries are close behind! Learn how to easily implement apps and ebooks into the traditional library storytime structure. Exciting and low cost library programs using educational apps and games will also be covered.

Central Library’s YOUmedia
Get a sneak peek at the Central Library’s YOUmedia teen and tween digital lab space. See how teens can use technology for creative self-expression through digital media with video creation, audio production, and digital photography.

Minecraft
Minecraft is a popular new online game that allows players to build and share immense creations such as buildings, structures, and geographic landscapes. It’s the 21st Century’s answer to Legos. Learn how libraries are using Minecraft to connect with children, tweens, and teens, and promote fun collaborative projects using library technology.

We hope that you can join us – please register for this Tech Camp.

Paint

Rhyme Cube:  Click here for description.

Sign Language:  Word of the day is “Paint

Opening Rhyme:
“Open them, shut them,
Give a little clap!
Open them, shut them,
Now put them in your lap!”

First Book:  Blue Goose by Nancy TafuriBlue Goose

Felt Board: Five Little Paintbrushes

paint 5 little

Five little brushes went out to paint.
One painted white, then ran away in fright.
The second painted red and jumped under the bed.
The third painted green then fled the scene.
The fourth painted black than ran around back.
The fifth painted yellow and felt so mellow,
He invited everyone back to begin again!

(credit:  I think I got this rhyme from a Summer Reading Manual years ago.)

Although I didn’t do the following felt board this time, I’ve done it in the past with slightly older kids. First I put the felt paintbrushes on the board in rainbow order and go over it with the kids.

paint rainbow

Next I tell them to close their eyes.  I turn the board around and remove one paintbrush.  I then recite the following rhyme:

“I know the colors of the rainbow.
Do you know them too?
If one color were missing,
Would you know which hue?”

Then the kids tell me which color is missing.  We do it a few times like this but if you want to really challenge them, you can put the paintbrushes in random order instead of rainbow order.  Then remove one brush and ask them to tell you which one is missing.

Song: “We’re Making Some Purple Paint”

This is actually a twist on a camp song called “We’re Making Some Purple Soup” (I used to be a camp counselor) and I just changed the words to fit my theme.

“We’re making some purple paint,
Whip whip, whip whip              (pretend to stir paint)
We’re making some purple paint,
Shooby dooby do                    (pointer fingers to the sky and do a little dance)
With purple potatoes and purple tomatoes….
And…..”                                    (have kids tell you things they can put in the mix ie. purple socks, grapes, one kid told me to put a purple baby in….)

Mix in whatever they come up with and start the verse over again until your purple paint looks nice and mixed up!

Here’s video of some campers doing the song for reference.

Second Book: Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh

mouse paint book

Felt Board:  Mouse Paint

mouse paint

Next I had the kids retell the story as I placed the felt pieces on the board.  As Storytime Katie suggested, I had the kids dance in place at the part of the story where the mice dance in the puddles to make new colors.

Third Book:  I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More by Karen BeaumontI Ain't Gonna Paint No More!

Activity:  We Painted Ourselves!

paintbrush real

Next I gave each child a paint brush and we pretended to paint ourselves just like the character in the book.  I asked kids to give me suggestions on what we should paint next- our ears, our knees, our heads, our backs (grown ups helped with this one)…  Once we were covered in pretend paint I told the kids we should wash it off so we don’t drip puddles everywhere.  We pretend the giant rug on the floor was a cat’s water dish (like in Mouse Paint) and we all jumped in and cleaned off!

Goodbye Song:

Let’s tickle the clouds,
And tickle our toes,
And turn around,
And tickle our nose,
Reach down low,
Reach up high,
Storytime is over,
So wave goodbye!

I’m Back….hopefully!

After a long (and unplanned) hiatus from blogging I hope to be adding new posts ASAP.

Over the past few months I’ve been doing tons of storytimes but haven’t had a free moment to post them.  I’m sure a lot of you children’s librarians out there can relate to feeling overwhelmed at times and stretched too thin (but still loving your job!).

I hope there are others out there that feel like that.  Otherwise, I don’t know what I’m doing wrong!

Hats

Rhyme Cube: Click here for description

Sign Language:  Word of the day is “Hat

Opening Rhyme:  “Open them, Shut them…”

Finger Puppets:  Timothy Mouse

I found this cute story at ArtFelt.  I used two finger puppets I had (from IKEA!) and made a simple felt hat for the mouse.  In the story, Timothy Mouse feels embarrassed about his ears because they aren’t big like all the other mice.  So he always wears a hat.  He also is a notoriously bad listener.  His friend, the Bunny, tells Timothy that she got her big ears from being a good listener.  Timothy begins to listen and soon his ears grow big and beautiful! (remove hat to reveal his big ears).  Here are some pictures:mousebunnyhatmousebunny

After this story I told the kids to put on their big beautiful mouse ears so they would be good listeners too!

First Book:  The Magic Hat by Mem FoxThe Magic Hat

Finger Play:  My Hat Has Three Corners

My hat it has three corners
[Join thumbs and index fingers to form triangle and place on top of head.]
Three corners has my hat
[Raise three fingers.]
If it did not have three corners,
[Raise three fingers and shake head.]
It would not be my hat.
[Join thumbs and index fingers to form triangle and place on top of head.]

Felt Board:  “Little Bat, Little Bat…”

Another variation on one of my favorite felt boards.  This time I made four felt hats (in different colors) and one black bat.  I turned the board so the kids couldn’t see and told them to close their eyes (no peeking!).  I hid the bat under one of the hats and then let the kids guess which hat he was under.  We recited this rhyme:

“Little Bat, Little Bat, are you under the ____ Hat?”four hats

Second Book:  This Is Not My Hat by Jon KlassenThis Is Not My Hat

(p.s. Jon Klassen is my favorite illustrator)

Song:  Silly Hat Song

(Tune: This Old Man)
On my head, I wear my hat.
It is such a silly hat
That my head will wiggle waggle to and fro
Where else can my silly hat go?
[Repeat using foot, elbow and knee.]

credit: Surlalune

Felt Board:  Shape Recognition

I made three felt “people” using different shapes.  I had Mr. Blue (circle), Mrs. Green (triangle), and Mr. Orange (square).  Here’s a picture:shape hats 3

I also made three different hats; round, pointy, and square.shape hats 2

We talked about the shapes.  I pointed out that Mrs. Green has three corners because she’s a triangle. We talked about how Mr. Orange has four sides,…etc

Next we put the correct hat on the correct person.shape hats