Story Love I

Ack! I am behind in blog posts! I guess that’s what happens when you’re in the midst of preparing for and starting SUMMER READING!

Last month, I did a couple of Books/Reading/Story Love storytimes. The following is one I did for my ESL family literacy group. The kids range from pre-K to age 8, so that can be challenging to prepare for!

Hope that everyone is having a happy summer so far and is enjoying a good book!

Opening Song: If You Want to Hear a Story

Read-aloud #1: Wolf! by Becky Bloom
Flannel/Storytelling: The Three Little Pigs
Read-aloud #2: Reading Makes You Feel Good by Todd Parr
Song: Let Everyone Clap Hands With Me (from Pete Seeger: American folk, game & activity songs for children)
Read Aloud #3: The Wonderful Book by Leonid Gore
Storytelling: “Book! Book! Book!” (This is a well-loved librarian anecdote about a chicken that comes into the library. One version, “The Well-Read Frog” can be found in Margaret Read MacDonald’s Three Minute Tales.)
“Dancing” Song: “Dancing Scarf Blues” from Carole Peterson: Dancing Feet

Closing Song: We Wave Good-bye Like This

It’s Frosty Cold Out!

BRR! Come in to the library where it’s nice and warm… and listen to some fun winter stories! So far, I’ve done this storytime (some variation of it) with 3 preschool groups, 2 kindergarten classes, and a family literacy group. I’m also planning on using it for my regular Panera storytime and my new storytime over at the Randall Oaks branch 🙂

Opening Song: If You Want to Hear a Story

Read-aloud #1: All You Need for a Snowman by Alice Schertle OR Snowmen at Night by Carolyn Buehner
*Flannel Rhyme: Cute Little Snowman
Read-aloud #2: Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London OR Ten on the Sled by Kim Norman
Action Song: If You’re Wearing Red Today
Read-aloud #3: Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing by Judi Barrett
Song: Silly Hat Song
Storytell: The Mitten (You can use beautiful visuals as props from Jan Brett’s website here.) (I also used Heather Forest’s musical refrain from her version on her Tales Around the Hearth cd.)
Read-aloud #5: Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson OR Ten on the Sled by Kim Norman OR Oh! by Kevin Henkes OR Pip and Squeak by Ian Schoenherr
(Song: “Silly Dance Contest” from Jim Gill Sings the Sneezing Song)

Closing Song: We Wave Goodbye

*Cute Little Snowman
A cute little snowman
Had a carrot nose
Along came a bunny,
And what do you suppose?
That hungry little bunny,
Looking for his lunch,
Ate the snowman’s carrot nose,
Nibble, nibble, crunch!

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!)

So Many Ways to Say Hello

I had an awesome outreach visit last week. I helped out the Literacy Connection by presenting a storytime during one of their family literacy classes held at a local elementary school. Most of the adults are only just learning English… and the kids are still learning, too. So, it was a little bit of a challenge… but they wanted me to present in English to help immerse these families in the language. This group was one of my most active groups ever… EVERYONE (adults, too!) got into it! (The kids ranged from preschool to grade 4.) I am looking forward to future family literacy storytimes.

This “hello” theme was very appropriate for this “first day” of ESL… We even learned how to say “hello” in a bunch of different languages!

Opening Song: If You Want to Hear a Story

Read-aloud #1: Bark, George by Jules Feiffer (Also: use swallowing “dog” puppet with various animal finger puppets inside)
Song (with finger puppets): Old MacDonald
Read-aloud #2: excerpts from Hello World!:Greetings in 42 Languages around the Globe! by Manya Stojic
Read-aloud #3:Say Hello! by Rachel Isadora
Song/Fingerplay: Hands Up High
Song/Fingerplay: Where is Thumbkin?
Read-aloud #4: Hello, Hello! by Miriam Schlein (how animals say hello!)
Flannel: Hi, Harry! by Martin Waddell
Read-aloud #5: Say Hello by Jack and Michael Foreman
Fingerplay: Fun with Hands

Closing Song: We Wave Good-bye Like This

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?)

The Little Red Hen

Who will help me tell these chicken stories??? Last Saturday, I did some traditional storytelling for a family audience over at our Buena Vista Library. The kids had a blast helping me act out and participate in various chicken stories. I have a special partiality to chicken stories, so this was an “egg-cellent” treat for me as well. And, I got to exercise my “oral storytelling” muscle! There are a couple of pictures from the event posted on my flickr page (Programs for Older Kids).

Intro Music: Chicken Dance

Opening Song: Let Everyone Clap Hands with Me (Pete Seeger)

Story #1: “Book! Book! Book!” (This is a well-loved librarian anecdote about a chicken that comes into the library. One version, “The Well-Read Frog” can be found in Margaret Read MacDonald’s Three Minute Tales. There is also a picture book, Book! Book! Book! by Deborah Bruss that expands this tale.)

Story #2: “The Little Red Hen” (This is a traditional folktale, possibly of Russian-origin. Children dressed up and acted out the parts. I used a singing refrain from storyteller Heather Forest’s sound recording Sing Me a Story.)

Story #3: “Poule and Roach” (This is a Louisiana French tale about a chicken who marries a cockroach. One version can be found in Margaret Read MacDonald’s Celebrate the World. I was also inspired by storyteller Priscilla Howe’s recording “Poule and Blatt” on her cd Chickens! and Other Stories for Young Children.)

Song: “Barnyard Gate” (This is a traditional song that I learned by listening to Pete Seeger recordings. The children used puppets and made the appropriate animal sounds.)

Story #4: “Henny Penny” (This is an old fable with African origins, also known as “Chicken Little” or “The Sky is Falling”. Children dressed up and acted out the parts. I was partially inspired by a version I watched on You Tube from the TV-series Golden Girls.)

Movie: “The Wise Little Hen” (Disney’s The Mickey Mouse Club—Week One)

The Three Little Pigs

Super Saturday Stories is back! A few times each year, I do a special family storytime that focuses on a classic folktale. Last Saturday, I presented our “Three Little Pigs Go Hog Wild!” program over at the Buena Vista library. Fun times!

Intro Music: “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?” versions from Vintage Children’s Favourites, Simply Mad About the Mouse , and Reggae for Kids: Movie Classics
Opening Song: Let Everyone Clap Hands with Me

Read-aloud #1: The Three Little Pigs retold by James Marshall
Storytelling Activity: The Three Little Pigs (Children dressed up and acted out the parts.)
Read-aloud #2: The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka
Tandem Poem: “The Three Little Pigs” from You Read to Me, I’ll Read to You: Very Short Fairy Tales to Read Together by Mary Ann Hoberman
Read-aloud #3: The Three Horrid Little Pigs by Liz Pichon
Song: Laurie Berkner: Buzz Buzz (Pig on Her Head)

Muppet Classic Theater (The Three Little Pigs)

Upon entering, children choose between a pig and a wolf cut-out to wear during the program. As they left, each child was given a pig sticker.