Five Golden Songs

On the fifth day of December, Ms. Jennifer gave to all…

At yesterday’s Lincoln Story League (our local kiddie librarian idea swap), I shared five Silly Librarian approved action songs…

Let Everyone Clap Hands Like Me
from Pete Seeger: Children’s Concert at Town Hall (live version)
(Additional verses added here.)

Let everyone clap hands like me —(Clap clap)
Let everyone clap hands like me—(Clap clap)
Come on, join into the game.
You’ll find that it’s always the same.

Let everyone shout “Hooray!”—”Hooray!”…
Let everyone sneeze like me —“Achoo!”…
Let everyone cry like me —“Boo Hoo”…
Let everyone laugh like me—”Ha Ha”…
Let everyone yawn like me—*Yawn*…
Let everyone snore like me—*Snore*…
Let everyone get up and turn around—(Turn around, then sit down!)…

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, knee, etc.
Put hat on appropriate body parts and wiggle!

Hands up High
Tune: “London Bridge”
Move appropriately to words.

(Video presentation here.)
First we wave our hands up high,
Hands up high, hands up high.
First we wave our hands up high.
Then we clap them.
Then we shake our hands down low,
Hands down low, hands down low.
Then we shake our hands down low.
Then we hide them.

If You’re Wearing Red Today
Tune: “Muffin Man”If you’re wearing red today,
Red today, red today,
If you’re wearing red today,
Stand up and shout “Hooray!”
Repeat for other colors

Fun with Hands
Tune: “Row, Row, Row your boat”
Suit actions to words.

Roll, roll, roll your hands,
As slowly as can be.
Roll, roll, roll your hands,
Do it now with me.
Roll, roll, roll your hands,
As fast, as fast can be.
Roll, roll, roll your hands,
Do it now with me.
Clap, clap, clap your hands…
Shake, shake, shake your hands…
Stamp, stamp, stamp your feet…

No, David, don’t treat books that way!

Another month, another Lincoln Story League (our local youth services idea swap)…

I shared with my colleagues a Book Care mini-lesson using No, David! by David Shannon. I’ve done this activity for class visits to the public library for younger kids (kindergarten/first grade).

During a discussion on how to take care of books, and after a fun reading of the No, David! book (available as a big book!), the kids and I sort objects that will and will not help David take care of books.

I have two boxes: a box labeled “YES!” and a box labeled “NO!”. I also have a bag with book-helping and book-hurting objects inside (crayon, bookmark, plastic bag, scissors, candy/food, umbrella, marker, library card, etc.). I take out the objects one by one, and the kids say “Yes, David” or “No, David” depending on if the object helps take care of books (example: bookmark = YES, scissors = NO) and I put the object in the corresponding box.

The kids have a blast with this mini-lesson/game! (I got this great idea from one of my former library instructors, former school librarian Janie Schomberg… thanks, Janie!)

I also like to pair this book/activity with another book, The Incredible Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers. (And, I mention that eating books is probably not a good way to take care of books, haha!)

Featuring Priscilla Howe

Every month (September-May), librarians in my area unite to share ideas for “Lincoln Story League”. It’s great fun!

This month, I told a favorite story from a favorite storyteller, Priscilla Howe. “Chickens!” is about a pack of siblings who go off to explore an old barn. They take turns testing their bravery and going inside alone. In the barn, there are chickens… with money in their beaks. And a ghost who warns, “I’m the ghost of Charles Dickens, leave the money with the chickens!” The big sister and the big brother freak out and run away… but not the baby. Find out how the baby scares the ghost away!

Watch Priscilla tell this story here.
Purchase her cd Chickens! and Other Stories for Young Children here.

Her other cds include The Ghost with the One Black Eye and The Best (and Worst) of Beasts.
She also has two dvds, The Itsy Bitsy Tiger and Other Ridiculous Stories and Songs and The Bully Billy Goat and Other Stories.

Featuring Heather Forest

Yesterday, I got to go out and play with other librarians at a story-swap meeting (Lincoln Story League)!!!

There, I shared my love of musical storyteller Heather Forest. I plugged two of her wonderful cds, Sing Me a Story and Tales Around the Hearth as well as her picture book version of The Little Red Hen. These cds (as well as mp3s of individual stories from the collections) are available from such sites as CD Baby, iTunes, and Amazon.

I’ve adopted catchy musical refrains from her versions of The Mitten, The Turnip and The Little Red Hen into my own storytelling at the library. Adding these refrains is a great way to perk up the presentation and to get the kids singing along.

I also talked a little about how I tell The Little Red Hen. In addition to using Heather Forest’s singing refrain (“If you want some cake to eat, who will help me plant this wheat, etc.?”), I often use audience participation in the form of choosing some kids to work puppets or wear special headbands to act out the parts of the dog, the cat and the mouse. I wear a crazy chicken hat and act as the little red hen. Everyone else gets to be my little chicks. So, when the dog, the cat, and the mouse all say “Not I”, I ask my little chicks if they will help me. They all nod and agree, and we act out planting the seeds, harvesting the wheat, etc. And, of course, the little red hen and her chicks all get to mime eating delicious cake at the end! For my youngest audiences, I usually use flannels and visual cards to tell the story. I still have the kids be chicks, but I don’t select anyone to be a specific part.

The Little Red Hen was a part of a chicken folktale program that I geared for a K-3rd grade audience (and their families). I also used it in my storytime best practices presentation for the California Library Association Conference in 2009. (Please note my email address and blog URL have changed since then.) For that presentation, I also included a template for a fun chicken craft. Other chicken storytimes I’ve done can be found here, here, and here. (Can you tell it is one of my favorite themes?)