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Thursday, September 3, 2015

Going to the Beach

We need to talk more with our children. Talk about what we're doing, what they are experiencing and simply what is going on.
So for Storytime this week we went to the beach.

Talk and Background Knowledge
Let’s talk about going to the beach.

Beach House by Deanna Caswell

We sang The Goldfish by Laurie Berkner, the kids that come to my Storytime love this song!  It's a great song to get them to listen and follow directions.

For Math I used Beach I Spy from this website, here. I think it will be great for the kids to search and count the different beach items.

A good classic read aloud is All You Need for a Beach by Alice Schertle.  We didn't get to read this title this week, but I booktalked it. 

For Play, I suggest pretending you are at the beach, it’s easy, a towel on the floor, a ball, sunglasses, a cool glass of tea, listen to ocean sounds or beach music!

A Great Read Together – The Bears’ Vacation by Stan Berenstain (Ms. Dianna’s Favorite)  I showed and read aloud about 4 pages and shared that my dad read this with me and it's a great read, especially one-on-one.

For Science:
Do you know why we have high tide and low tide? Using Why do the ocean have tides? By Marian B. Jacobs I booktalked about tides.

I Read aloud A Beach Tail by Karen Lynn Williams because it's a great read aloud and you follow along with Gregory as he explores the beach.  It features an African American young male and his dad. It is illustrated by Floyd Cooper, so with a wonderfully diverse group of children I have in my Storytime, it's a perfect match. I briefly explained Mr. Cooper's technique of painting.

We grabbed our shakers and sang Shake & Stop and Up So High from Kids Make Music and Alabama, Mississippi by Jim Gill

With the flannel board I used  Baa Baa Black Sheep.
Baa, baa black sheep have you any wool?
Yes, sir, yes, sir, three bags full.
One for me and one for Jane,
And one for my friend that lives down the lane. 
(I don't like the old-fashioned version, it sounds way too slave-owner like with the 'master' in it,  so I changed it.)

Then I used the book sets This Little Fishy by Richard Powell and handed out each book so the kids could manipulate the book themselves.  I read it aloud, but they go at their own pace so that they have the book in their hands and get to play with awhile.

Another Early Literacy Tip from Saroj Ghoting:
"As children get older they follow directions, repeat your words, respond to what you say with words, phrases, and then whole sentences. Listening to children while they speak is as important as talking to them."

Take Home Connection & Write
  • Letter B to make a beach with sand and shells.
  • Writing letter B
  • Beach I Spy
One week had the previous line-up and the next week I read aloud Sea Rex by Molly Idle, It's a Seashell Day by Dianne Ochiltree, and To the Beach!
The first week I had two children and 3 adults and the 2nd week I had 12 children and 4 adults.  I never know from week to week if I'll have zero or twenty.  So from time to time, I'll repeat a very similar Storytime when it's all new kids.  At both I read A Beach Tail by Karen Lynn Williams, because I believe strongly that children need to see themselves in books.

The Letter B page idea I saw on Pinterest, here.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

New Year Starting

This week we started Storytime with singing Happy by Pharrell Williams.  We used scarves to sing and dance.
Then it was on to our first book
The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach                              

Then we sang "Hands are for Clapping" from Jim Gill's CD Jim Gill sings the sneezing song and other contagious tunes.

Our Math component was the handout D is for doghouse, it has counting with it.  This came from a Mom Blog.
 My next book was an old classic that my mom read to me and I wanted to share with my Storytime crew.

Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion

I used the Play concept by bringing out some dog puppets today, but also I showed the children how to make a dog from paper.  It was an easy and fun puppet.
It's easy to incorporate Science when using a non-fiction book like, Dog by Juliet Clutton-Brock.
Dogs are mammals like people. They are warm-blooded, are born live, drink milk from their mothers and they have hair.

I like to include another aside like this one:
Dramatic play, when children act out stories, helps them build background knowledge and learn how stories work.

We  used our egg shakers and singing Shake & Stop and Up So High from Kids Make Music and I Know a Chicken from Laurie Berkner's Greatest Hits.

We finished up with everyone sitting down and reading a book with an adult or with another child.  We used That’s Not My Puppy by Fiona Watt & Roly Poly Puppies by Elaine Moore

I like to have a Take Home Connection and this one also includes Writing, with the D is for doghouse and the Letter D tracing was from this website, here.  and the origami dog puppet, here.

It was a long and fun summer.  I also had some health issues in the spring, and had surgery for herniated discs in my neck.  So hopefully I'm back in the swing of things.  What I want to do this school year for Storytime is feature a new book, a classic and book that is within 5 to 10 years old and a book set or two.  
At my library we're starting a new Family Funday program on Mondays, so I'd like to share those here also.  

Friday, June 5, 2015

Friday Favorites

The Whale in My Swimming Pool by Joyce Wan is delightful!  When going out to swim one day, in his pool, a boy runs into trouble, a whale of a problem.  There's a whale in his tiny pool. Nothing gets the whale out.  But with a little ingenuity the boy figures it out.  You'll love the ending, I did!
The art is done digitally in Illustrator.  It is bright and inviting.  The story and art go well together and the story has just enough humor to draw in both children and adults, which is not easy to do.
I look forward to seeing more from Joyce!  I'll use this title with children from Preschool age to 2nd grade.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Thrilling Thursday

My Pen by Christopher Myers is a wonderfully creative, inspiring story.  With just a pen you can do anything.  I can't wait to use this book this summer to introduce some art projects to show the kids that come in my library what you can do when you try. 
The art was created with Pen and Ink, I think.  It sure looks like it, but that doesn't mean that it wasn't also digitally altered in some way.  
I'll use this book with all ages.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Wonderful Wednesday

See You Next Year written by Andrew Larsen, illustrated by Todd Stewart is the perfect summer story.  It's about a family that goes on vacation to the same place every year.  They travel the same way, they stay in the same cottage, they go to the same beach.  This year the little girl makes a new friend. This story has a timeless quality to it and certainly a nostalgic feel to it.  It reminds me of childhood vacations and the vacation spot my husband and I love to go to each summer.
The illustrations in the book were inspired by the silkscreening process. They appear to be done with pastels or crayon with pen and ink and watercolors.  His use of light is very well done. There is a limited palette of color on each page and the art gives the story an added yearning vibe for your childhood.
I'll use this title with Kindergarten to Third grade students.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Terrific Tuesday

Hiccupotamus Steve Smallman, illustrated by Ada Grey is a story full of sounds and music.  The jungle animals are having fun making sounds by the creek, turning it into a song. At the end, when the hippo says he was helping, the animals don't agree, but the hippo was the one who made the creek go bubble with his hiccups.
 The illustrations look like they are mixed media, maybe some digital, but watercolors with colored pencil and some crayon or pastels.  They are bright, cartoon style and lively.  The jungle animal characters are so sweet and fun.  
This title will be perfect for a preschool Storytime about animals, musics, and sounds.  It's just right for Toddlers to Kindergarteners. 

Monday, June 1, 2015

Marvelous Monday

I Don't Want to be a Frog written by Dev Petty, illustrated by Mike Boldt is a hilarious story that I fell in love with this year!  This young frog just doesn't want to be a slimy frog, but he is.  He'd rather be a rabbit or pig or owl.  He doesn't like eating bugs or being wet.  He comes across a dog that tells him it's good he's not a cat or rabbit because that's what he loves to eat.  All in all, the young frog begins to appreciate who he is.  
The digital art is is a little quirky and quite fun. It uses speech balloons for when the animals talk back and forth which is very affective. 
This title will fit right in using it for print awareness in Early Literacy uses and for Letter Knowledge and Writing.  I'd also point out to parents how this story is all about the adult frog and younger frog having a conversation, so it certainly uses Talking from Early Literacy too.  
Teachers and parents can bring Science into this story with what different animals eat, and their habitats too. This could introduce the concepts of herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores.
I'll use this story whenever I can with Preschoolers to 3rd graders.  It's one of my favorites of the year.