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!



Rhyme Cube: Click here for description

Sign Language: Word of the day was “Cake

Opening Rhyme: “Open them, shut them…”

First Book: The Cake That Mack Ate by Rose RobartCake That Mack Ate

Song: “This is the way…”

This is the way we mix the batter, mix the batter, mix the batter
This is the way we mix the batter, when we bake a cake!

This is the way we spread the frosting, spread the frosting, spread the frosting
This is the way we spread the frosting, when we bake a cake!

This is the way we eat our piece, eat our piece, eat our piece
This is the way we eat our piece, when we bake a cake!

Felt Board: 5 Bright Birthday Candles

candlescandles out

(5 candles with flames
remove flames as we blow them out)

Five bright birthday candles and not one more,
The red one got blown out  (blow)
Then there were four.

Four bright birthday candles, pretty as can be,
The blue one got blown out (blow)
Then there were three.

Three bright birthday candles waiting for you,
The green one got blown out, (blow)
Then there were two.

Two bright birthday candles oh what fun,
The yellow one got blown out, (blow)
Then there was one.

Just one bright birthday candle standing oh so tall.
The purple one got blown out, (blow)
And that was all.

(credit: Storytime Katie, I altered the words slightly to include the color of each candle)

Second Book: Who Made This Cake? by Chihiro NakagawaWho Made This Cake?

(I was originally going to read Whopper Cake by Karma Wilson but I had a lot of very little ones in the group today so I went with this one instead.)

Song: “Patty Cake”

Patty cake patty cake,
Bakers man bake me some a cake as fast as you can.
Roll it pat it mark it with a “B”
And put it in the oven for baby and me

Felt Board:  Layer Cake

I ended up making this flannel board myself but I got the idea from one I found for sale on ebay.  I changed it up a little to suit my needs (I didn’t include flannel candles and numbered the layers differently).

Here are some pictures of what I did:

cake layers cake layers assembled

We started with the layers all mixed up.  I asked one child to come up, find layer number one, and bring it to me.  I then put the first layer on the wall.  I continued asking children to find the next layer until we had them all in the right order.  We stopped along the way to count up the layers and at the end I pointed out that the cake was taller than them!

(*since I had more kids than layers, we did this activity more than once to give all the kids a chance)

Third Book: If You Give a Cat a Cupcake by Laura Numeroff

Song:  “Mix the Batter”

Mix the batter, stir the batter
(make a stirring motion with one arm/hand)
Shake some flour in
(make a shaking motion with one arm/hand)
Mix the batter, stir the batter
(make a stirring motion with one arm/hand)
Place it in a tin
(pretend to pour)
Sprinkle in some raisins
(pretend to sprinkle)
Pop it in the oven
(open both hands, palms up, and slide them forward)
Open wide the oven door
(pretend to open door)
And out comes the cake!
(open both hands, palms up, and slide them forward)

(credit: Baby World Child Care Center)

Felt Board:  Cupcakes

Here’s the pattern I used for the cupcakes


Down the corner at the cupcake shop
There were 6 yummy cupcakes with sprinkles on top
Alone came _________(child’s name), all alone
S/He bought the _________(color) one and took it home!

(credit: Mel’s Desk, but I changed the words slightly)

Bees! (bees?!?)

Rhyme Cube: Click here for description.

Sign Language:  The word for the day is “Bee

Opening Rhyme:  Open them, Shut them,…

First Book:  Where There’s a Bear, There’s Trouble!  by Michael Catchpool

Flannel Board:  5 Bees

One little bee flew and flew.
He met a friend, and that made two.
Two little bees, busy as could be.
Along came another and that made three.
Three little bees wanted one more.
Found one soon and that made four.
Four little bees going to the hive.
Spied their little brother and that made five.
Five little bees working every hour.
Busy away, bees and find a flower.


(rhyme from: )

Song:  “I’m Bringing Home a Baby Bumble Bee…”

Second Book:  Bear and Bee by Sergio RuzzierBear and Bee

Flannel Board:  Here is a Beehive

I got this cute idea and the template from Sunflower Storytime

Make a bee hive and little bees that you can velcro onto a glove.  Here’s a picture of mine:beehive

Then recite this rhyme”

Here is a beehive. Where are the bees?
Hidden away where nobody sees.
Soon they come creeping out of the hive (have one bee pop out)
1-2-3-4-5! BUZZ! (bring each bee out as you count)
(make your bees fly all around the hive)

Song:  Bumble Bee, Bumble Bee

(I can’t remember where I found this song but it’s basically a version of “Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear…”)

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing all around.

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing on the ground.

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing up so high.

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing in the sky.

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing past your toes.

Bumblebee, Bumblebee
Buzzing on your nose.

Third Book:  Buzz, Buzz, Buzz, Went the Bumblebee by Colin West

Flannel Board: Patterns

Using the flannel bees I used previously, I pointed out that the bees had a pattern on them.  Tell the kids that bees have stripes.  Point to yellow, black, yellow… “this is a pattern!  It’s the same over and over again.”

“You can make patterns with shapes too. Not just colors.  Here is a pattern I’ve made:
Bee, hive, bee, hive, bee, hive   – Let’s see if we can make the same pattern right below-”

beehive pattern

(I asked the kids to repeat the pattern right below the first one while I put the pieces up.  Here’s a picture:)

beehive pattern 2

We did the activity again but I made the pattern a little more difficult:

beehive pattern 3

You could also create a pattern leaving one piece out and ask the kids to tell you what’s missing.

This is a very easy way to introduce a simple STEM concept into the storytime and the kids liked it!

Activity:  Egg Shakers

We used egg shakers (pretended they were bees!) and danced around while we listened to Laurie Berkner’s song “Buzz Buzz”

*  I already conducted this storytime but just found an app that could be used in storytime to emphasize pattern recognition.

iPad App:  Park Math HD by Duck Duck Moose

This is a great app (Duck Duck Moose is one of my favorite developers) that promotes math skills for the very young.  There are a number of cute activities included in the app but the one that I could use the next time I do this storytime is activated by tapping on the green kite (unfortunately, the activities are not labeled).

The screen displays a pattern made up of a number of everyday objects.  There is one object missing from the pattern and at the bottom of the screen there are four choices of objects that can be used to complete the pattern.  Here’s a couple screen shots:pattern app1pattern app2

You could hold the iPad facing the children and discuss the pattern that is displayed on the top half of the screen.  Then ask them to tell you what object would complete the pattern.  The app starts out with simple patterns (like the ones above) but there are slightly more difficult patterns included as well.

Rainy Day

Rhyme Cube:  Click here for description

Sign Language:  The word of the day was “Rain

Opening Rhyme:  Open them, shut them…

First Book:  Red Rubber Boot Day by Mary Lyn Ray Red Rubber Boot Day

Felt Board:  Five Little Umbrellas

I put the felt umbrellas on the board and had the kids count them with me.  We also pointed out the different colors.  Then I recited the following rhyme as I removed each umbrella (we always count the felt pieces together after each verse).

Five umbrellas stood by the back door,
The red one went outside,
Then there were four.

Four umbrellas, pretty as can be,
The blue one went outside,
Then there were three.

Three umbrellas with nothing to do,
The green one went outside,
Then there were two.

Two umbrellas not having much fun,
The yellow one went outside,
Then there was one.

Just one umbrella alone in the hall.
The white one went outside,
And that was all.


Song: “I Like to See the Raindrops Fall”

(to the tune of All Around the Mulberry Bush)

I like to see the raindrops fall,          (use sign language word for “rain”)
the raindrops fall, the raindrops fall
I like to see the raindrops fall
on a stormy day.

I like to hear the thunder  clap         (clap your hands loudly)
the thunder clap, the thunder clap
I like to hear the thunder clap
on a stormy day.

I like to see the lightning flash,       (make a flash motion with your hands)
the lightning flash, the lightning flash
I like to see the lightning flash
on a stormy day.

(credit: Storytime Secrets)

Second Book:  Rain by Manya Stojic Rain

Felt Board:  Make a Rainstorm

Next I asked the kids to help me make a rainstorm on the felt board.  I gave each child a felt raindrop and told them to hold onto it until they hear their name.  Once they hear their name that can come put it on the board.

I recited the following rhyme for each child:

“Rain, Rain,
Go away;
Come again,
Another day
Little (name of child)  wants to play.”

Our board looked like this:


We made a rainstorm!  I continued with another felt board activity.  I recited the following rhyme as I added the appropriate pieces.

“Rain on the grass
Rain on the trees
Rain on the rooftops
But not on me!
Rain on the grass
Rain on the trees
Rain on the windows
But not on me!”

Now our board looked like this:

raindrops 2

Third Book: Rain by Robert Kalan

Activity:  It’s Raining Bubbles!

Next I told the kids that we could pretend bubbles were raindrops and I could make it rain inside!  I blew tons of bubbles and we sang songs like “It’s Raining, It’s Pouring,” “Rain is Falling Down,” and “Rain, Rain, Go Away.”

(idea from Falling Flannelboards)


Rhyme Cube: Click here for a description

Sign Language:  “Color” (“Crayon” was a little too difficult so I decided to teach them “color” which is very simple)

Opening Rhyme:  Open them, shut them…

First Book:  The Crayon Box That Talked by Shane DeRolf

Felt Board:  I Have a Crayon

I have a crayon, I’ll give it to you.
Here is my crayon, my crayon of blue.

I have a crayon, a lovely little fellow.
Here is my crayon, my crayon of yellow.

I have a crayon, it’s here on my head.
Here is my crayon, my crayon of red.

I have a crayon, we can draw a circle.
Here is my crayon, my crayon of purple.

I have a crayon, what do I see?
Here is my crayon, an orange one for me.

I have a crayon, the best ever seen.
Here is my crayon, my crayon of green


I placed the felt crayons on the board as I recited the rhyme.  I tried to let the kids guess the colors before I put the crayon on the board.  They were good at figuring out which color was next based on the rhyme.

(The rhyme came from Abby the Librarian)

Rhyme:  If You’re Wearing Red…

If you’re wearing red today, red today, red today
If you’re wearing red today, please stand up!

(continue with all the colors that the group is wearing.  And change the actions too – please clap your hands, please stomp your feet, wiggle your ears, please jump up and down, etc.)

(This rhyme came from Kings County Library System wiki)

Second Book:  Monsters Love Colors by Mike Austin

Activity:  Hold Your Crayon Up

For this activity I used our die-cut machine to cut crayons out of different colored paper.  I gave each kid three crayons (red, blue, and green) and asked them to place them on the floor in front of them.  I told the kids to listen carefully to the directions and follow along.  Here’s what I asked them to do:

“Put your Blue crayon in the air hold it high and leave it there.
Put your Blue crayon on your back
Now please lay it in your lap.
Hold your Blue crayon in your hand
Now everyone please stand.
Wave your Blue crayon at the door
Now please lay it on the floor.
Hold your Blue crayon and jump, jump, jump.
Hold your Blue crayon way, way up!”

Continue with the red and green crayons.

Paper crayons:

crayon paper Sorry for the blurry picture!

(Rhyme from Sunflower Storytime)

Third Book:  My Crayons Talk by Patricia Hubbard

Felt Board:  Missing Crayon

Place the different colored felt crayons on the board (I like to do it in rainbow order) and have the kids name the colors as you point to them.  Next, turn the board around and remove one crayon.  Recite this rhyme:

“I know the colors in the crayon box.
Do you know them too?
If one color were missing,
Would you know the hue?”

Turn the board back around to show the kids and have them guess which one is missing.


Which Book Did You Like Best?

Hold up each book one at a time and ask the kids to raise their hands for their favorite.  Then say “If you like all three books raise both hands and say ‘WOO! WOO! WOO!'” (wave your hands in the air like a lunatic)

Goodbye Song:

Tickle the clouds.
Tickle your toes.
Turn around and
Tickle your nose.
Reach down low.
Reach way up high.
Storytime is over,
So wave goodbye!

On the Move – Transportation

Rhyme Cube: click here for description

Sign Language:  Word of the day is “Train

First Book:  I Love Planes by Philemon SturgesI Love Planes! by Philemon Sturges (2003...

Felt Board:  Where Does it Go?

I stole this wonderful idea from RovingFiddlehead KidLit

I made a train track, a road, a lake, and some clouds out of felt and put them on the board.  Like this:


I also made a train (engine, box car, and caboose), a bus, a bicycle, a sail boat, an airplane, and a hot air balloon.  I asked the kids to help me put the vehicles in the correct spot.  Of course I kept putting them in the wrong spots (the train engine in the sky, the boat on the train tracks, the bicycle in the lake…) and the kids had fun correcting me.where-vehicles2

Second Book:  Freight Train by Donald Crews

Felt Board: Green means “Go”

This activity came from Toddler Storytime

I made red, yellow, and green circles out of felt. I told the kids that when I put up the green one they need to run in place really fast (“go, go, go!”).  When I put up the yellow circle I told them to run in place very slowly (“slow, slow, slow).  And when I put up the red circle they should freeze (“stop!”).

redyellow green

I switched between the circles a few times so the kids could get all their wiggles out.

Third Book:  My Car by Byron Barton My Car

Song:  “Drive, Drive, Drive your Car”

(Tune of “Row, Row, Row Your Boat”)

Drive, drive, drive your car,
All around the town.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Up the hills and down.
Turn, turn, turn the key,
Make the engine roar. VROOOOM!
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Let’s go to the store.
Press, press, press the pedal,
Give the engine gas.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Now we’re going fast.
Turn, turn, turn the wheel,
That is how we steer.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Make a turn right here.

Song found at Sunflower Storytime

iPad App:  Peekaboo Vehicles by Touch and Learn

peekaboo vehicles

This cute app is easy to use as a guessing game during storytime.  It shows an image of clouds and plays the sound of a specific vehicle (a train, a firetruck, a helicopter, ….).  When you tap on the clouds they disappear to reveal an animated image of the vehicle.  I held the iPad facing the kids and had them guess each vehicle by its sound.  I also gave them clues.  For example, with the airplane sound I told the kids: “this vehicle has great big wings and flies in the sky.”   Once they shouted out their guesses, I taped the iPad to reveal the vehicle.  Here’s a screenshot of the firetruck:

peekaboo fire truck

This activity was super simple and fun.

In the Jungle!

This week I did a jungle themed storytime mostly because I love the book Oh No! by Candace Fleming and I wanted to use it!

Rhyme Cube: click here for picture

Sign Language:  word of the day was “Monkey

Opening Rhyme:  Open them, shut them…

First Book:  Oh No! by Candace FlemingOh, No!


“Monkey see, monkey do
Little monkey at the zoo
Monkey, monkey in the tree
Can you ________ like me?”

(Fill in the blank with different actions for each verse: jump around, swing your arms,
scratch an itch, eat a banana, screech)

Rhyme from storytimekatie blog

iPad App:  Felt Board by Software Smoothie

I used the Felt Board app to create a slideshow of animals.  I held the iPad facing the kids.  Then recited the following rhyme as I went through the slide show.  After I swiped to the image of the animal I would let the kids shout out its name and its noise.

“I went to the jungle on day,
jungle one day, jungle one day.
Who did I see along the way? (swipe to the slide of the frog)
Frog! (let kids shout this part out)

I went to the jungle one day,
jungle one day, jungle one day.
I met a frog along the way
and this is what he did say –
Ribbit! (let kids shout this part out)”

(continue with monkey, crocodile, and parrot)

Here are screenshots of the app


Next I recited the rhyme again but changed the words a little:

I went to the jungle one day,
jungle one day, jungle one day.
I met so many animals along the way! (swipe the screen to the last image)


I asked the kids again to tell me what each animal says!

Second Book:  Do Crocs Kiss? by Salina YoonDo Crocs Kiss?

Felt Board:  Old MacDonald Had a Jungle

Old Mac Donald had a jungle.  EIEIO
And in that jungle he had a monkey.  EIEIO
With an EEEEEE here, and an EEEEE there,
Here and EEEEEE, there and EEEEEE,
Everywhere an EEEEE, EEEEE
Old Mack Donald had a jungle, EIEIO
(continue with snake and tiger)

had a jungle (sorry for the blurry picture!)

Rhyme: Little Monkey

A little monkey likes to do just the same as you and you:
When you stand up very tall, Monkey stands up very tall.
When you go to throw a ball, Monkey goes to throw a ball.
When you try to touch your toes, Monkey tries to touch his toes.
When you wrinkle up your nose, Monkey wrinkles up his nose.
When you jump up in the air, Monkey jumps up in the air.
When you sit back on the floor, Monkey sits back on the floor.

Third Book:  Two Little Monkeys by Mem FoxTwo Little Monkeys

Activity:  Jungle Box

I stole this wonderful idea from Abby the Librarian. I made a jungle box and a bunch of cards with jungle animals on them.  I passed out the cards to the kids and told them that we were going to take turns putting our animals in the jungle box.  I asked them to listen carefully until they hear their animal called and then they can come up and put it in the box.  I sang the following song:

“If you have a tiger, a tiger, a tiger,
If you have a tiger, please put him in the jungle”

(continue until all the animals are in the box)

Here are pictures of the box and the animal cards:

jungle boxinside jungle box