Tuesday, December 9, 2014

School Age Storytime: Celebrating Books and Reading

Open Your Eyes to the World -- either real or through the pages of a book
K-3rd Summer Reading promo 2013

Pirate Treasure Hunt!

Book: Pirate Treasure Hunt! -- Jan Peck (chant and response -- treasure is a  box of books!)

Hello! Hello!

Book: hello!  hello! -- Matthew Cordell (girl discovers magical world outside when she puts down her electronics)

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

Book: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore -- William Joyce (story that inspired this Academy Award-winning short film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJvSXQwBBQg, also any iPad Ap)

The World Is Waiting for You

Book: The World is Waiting for You -- Barbara Kerley (Kerley's latest collaboration with National Geographic alternates photographs of children exploring their world with extraordinary photos of scientists and explorers.  Short biogs and great quotes in the back as well.)

H. O. R. S. E. : A Game of Basketball and Imagination

Book: H.O.R.S.E.: a game of basketball and imagination -- Christopher Myers (multicultural -- a great game of basketball and hyperbole!)

I'm Bored

Book: I'm Bored --Michael Ian Black (a girl, initially proclaiming "I'm bored" goes to great lengths to show a skeptical potato that kids are NOT boring!)

Bedm. K-3 6/13

next time add: The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak – read by the author here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cREyQJO9EPs

The Book with No Pictures

Pre-School Storytime: Pizza & Pasta

A fun and silly storytime incorporating imaginary food preparation,
music, poetry, numeracy, and active play.

Entering Music: “I am a pizza” from Linda Arnold’s Peppermint Wings (also on 10 Carrot Diamond.)

Book: Noodles (Pop-Up) – Weeks
Song: “Ravioli” (lyrics for this and other songs below)

Book (older kids):  Spaghetti Eddie – SanAngelo  
Poem: "Spaghetti, Spaghetti" by Jack Prelutsky in the collection Sunflakes -- selected by Lilian Moore

Flannel/Song:On Top of Spaghetti” http://www.scoutsongs.com/lyrics/ontopofspaghetti.html (This is an easy flannel to make -- I used yellow yarn hot-glued on a flannel plate, and added googly eyes on my "meatball")
  Hi, Pizza Man!
Book: Hi, Pizza Man – Walter (Mother and young child bored with waiting for the Pizza Man play a fun game imagining which animals might deliver the pie.)

Flannel/Song:  P-I-Z-Z-A! (lyrics below)
Younger Book : Pizza at Sally’s – Wellington
The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza
Older Book:  Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza – Sturges (folk tale variant) or Pizza  Pat – Gelman (cumulative tale) (both good – Gelman shorter –used in 2011/12)
Flannel/Song: “I Am a Pizza” from Linda Arnold’s Peppermint Wings (also on 10 Carrot Diamond.) (lyrics below)
Pete's a Pizza

DVD/Video: Pete’s a Pizza (Wkrm) GREAT! Also  on PPR DVD Family Stories (at WTL)
(acted out making a kid pizza afterwards!)

Additional Books:
Pigs Aplenty, Pigs Galore – McPhail (saved for messes) or Little Nino’s Pizzeria – Barbour
The song "I Am A Pizza" (tune on Linda Arnold's tape "Peppermint Wings" makes a great flannel board. (It works well as an echo & response song (you sing then audience repeats line)  If you don't have the album, feel free to give me a call and I'll sing it for you.)  (Flannelboard pretty self explanatory.)
I am a pizza  … (audience) I am a pizza  (place flannel “tomato/cheese pizza” on board)
With extra cheese… with extra cheese    
From tomatoes… From tomatoes…
Sauce is squeezed… Sauce is squeezed…
Onions and Mushrooms… Onions and Mushrooms…  (add flannel onions/mushrooms)
I am a pizza … I am a pizza
Ready to go!
I am a pizza… I am a pizza…
Pepperoni… Pepperoni…  (add flannel “pepperoni”)
No Anchovies… No Anchovies…
Or phony balogne… Or phony balogne…
I am a pizza… I am a pizza…
Order by phone… Order by phone…  (flannel phone receiver or just use hand motion)
I am a pizza… I am a pizza…
Please take me home.
I am a pizza… I am a pizza…
Peppers on the top… Peppers on the top… (add flannel “peppers”)
Out of the oven… Out of the oven…
And into a box… And into a box…      (cover with square flannel “pizza box” )
Into the car… Into the car…
Upside down… Upside down… (groan)
I am a pizza… I am a pizza…
Dropped on the ground.   
I was a pizza… I was a pizza…
I was the BEST… I was the BEST…
I was a pizza… I was a pizza…
NOW I’M A MESS!   (flip over “pizza box” to reveal a flannel “scrambled up pizza”!)
Another fun song (from the book "Second Helpings"):
P-I-Z-Z-A (tune: BINGO) (flannelboard has a pizza divided into 5 pieces, I like to use numeral cards with this as well.)
I had a pizza all my own
And all of it was mine-O.
And all of it was mine-O!
I had a pizza that I shared
One piece went to my brother.
But all the rest was mine-O!
(continue with sister, mother, father...)
I had a pizza that I shared
One piece is all I'm left-O.
(clap, clap, clap, clap, clap),
(clap, clap, clap, clap, clap),
(clap, clap, clap, clap, clap),
And now that piece is gone-O!
"Ravioli"  (tune:  Alouette)--great movement song
Ravioli, ravioli, ravioli--
Ravioli, that's the stuff for me.
Do you have it on your pants?
Yes I have it on my pants.
On your pants?  On my pants.  Oh, oh, oh, oh.
Ravioli, ravioli, ravioli--
Ravioli, that's the stuff for me.
Ravioli, ravioli, ravioli--
Ravioli, that's the stuff for me.
Do you have it on your sleeve?
Yes I have it on my sleeve.
On your sleeve?  On my sleeve.
On your pants?  On my pants.  Oh, oh, oh, oh.
Ravioli, ravioli, ravioli--
Ravioli, that's the stuff for me.
Do you have it on your shoe?…     (chin, hair, nose, ear, etc. -- continue on
a round the body tour...)
"On Top Of Spaghetti" (Tune:  "On Top of Old Smokey")
(Another great flannelboard)
On top of spaghetti, all covered with cheese,
I lost my poor meatball, when somebody sneezed.
It rolled off the table, and onto the floor,
and then my poor meatball rolled out the door.
It rolled in the garden, and under a bush,
and then my poor meatball, was nothing but mush.
The mush was as tasty, as tasty could be,
and early next  summer, it grew into a tree.
The tree was all covered, with beautiful moss,
It grew lovely meatball, and tomato sauce.
So if you eat spaghetti, all covered with cheese,
hold on to your meatballs, and don't ever sneeze!
BWL 2.12

Monday, December 8, 2014

Winter Storytime/Theater/Craft: Jan Brett’s The Mitten

Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Jan Brett’s wonderful retelling of the old Russian Folktale “The Mitten” (For ages 3-9)
We’ll read this cozy tale, act out the story and then make our own well-stuffed mittens!
  • Read 20th Anniversary Edition
  • Act out story with puppets or masks from www.janbrett.com – we had drawn an enormous mitten on a white plastic tablecloth with thick black marker, placed it on the floor and parents held down the corners while the Iibrarian narrated the story and the children (holding laminated masks from the Jan Brett website), stepped on and huddled together, at the “aachoo” we all jumped off and threw the tablecloth into the air!   Another possibility (suggested here http://lalalalibrary.blogspot.com/2014/12/flannel-friday-mitten.html is to have two kids (or grown ups) hold hands and become each side of the mitten, then let the kids crowd in between.)
  • And/or play “The Mitten Game” from A Storytime Year by Susan Dailey p. 18 (adapted for Jan Brett’s version)
Have parents & children get in a circle & hold hands. The circle represents the mitten. Sing (to: “Twinkle, twinkle, Little Star”)
Mitten on this day so cold
How many animals can you hold?
A little mole tunnels in
To get out of the snow and wind
Mitten on this day so cold
How many animals can you hold?
Repeat for the other animals (snowshoe rabbit, hedgehog, owl, badger, fox, bear, mouse) As each animal’s name is called, a couple of children enter the circle and the circle gets tighter around them (the mitten is getting “crowded”).

On the last verse, sing the following and all fall down!.

Mitten on this day so cold
How many animals can you hold?
A tiny mouse crawls right in and…. Ha-Choo!!!
  • Craft: animals & mitten www.janbrett.com/put_the_animals_in_the_mitten.htm
    -- we used hole punch and yarn for lacing mitten halves together (note: it’s easier to get the animals in and out if you don’t lace up the cuff portion). We also made eight hole punches along the cuff and used yarn to attach each of the animals to the cuff – then you can get them out of the mitten more easily at the “aachoo” – and the pieces don’t get lost! – we found a 8-10” long piece of yarn tied in a 4” long loop prevents too much tangling.) Used coloring sheet: “design your own mitten” from Jan Brett’s website for younger kids.)
12.2009 (20th Anniversary)

Monday, December 1, 2014

It’s a Wrap (Story/Craft program Ages 3-10)

It’s a Wrap (Story/Craft program Ages 3-10)

“We'll share stories & songs about gifts and giving, then create our own wrapping paper and cards. Please wear old clothes or bring a smock as we will be using paint.”

Opening music & craft music: Beethoven’s Wig    
Book: Giving – Shirley Hughes
Flannel: “Helping”
Book: Silver Packages – Cynthia Rylant (if the kids had been on the younger side, would have substituted Immi's Gift – Karin Littlewood)
Prop/Story: The Surprise – George Shannon
Book/Song: The Marvelous Toy – Tom Paxton

Book:  The Extraordinary Gift – Florence Langlois
Details about the above can be found at:

· Wrapping Paper supplies: large paper (used packing paper bought at UPS store, could have also used bulletin board paper), plastic tablecloths, tempera paint and Styrofoam trays and brushes, Ellison die cutout stencils, bottle caps to make circles.)
· Holiday Cards supplies: construction paper for cards, seasonal Ellison die cut outs, markers, glue, scissors, hole punches, feathers, sequins, pompoms etc.


Gifts & Giving: Story and Craft (Ages 3-9) Get an early "wrap" on your holidays with seasonal stories and songs plus a chance to make your very own wrapping paper!

Opening music & craft music: Goin’ to the Zoo – Tom Paxton and A Child’s Celebration of Song 2 
Book: Rabbit’s Gift: A Fable from China – George Shannon
Prop/Story: The Surprise – George Shannon
Book: Immi's Gift – Karin Littlewood)
Book/Song: The Marvelous Toy – Tom Paxton
Book:  The Extraordinary Gift – Florence Langlois

Craft:  wrapping paper – Supplies: large sheets of white paper, markers, stamps & stamp pads


Monday, November 17, 2014

School Age Storytime: Giving Thanks: Celebrating Native Americans at Thanksgiving

Brother Eagle, Sister Sky
A storytime for K-4 students celebrating the first Americans – Helping students gain an understanding of the Native Americans’ reverence for the natural world through their words & pourquoi stories. 
Can be used with Core Standards relating to folk tales. (R.L. 2.3, 3.3.- details below).

Opened with track #1 (flute solo) from  Beneath the Raven Moon (any Native American flute CD would do) -- asked kids to identify instrument -- any sense of where it was from?   Talked about the First Americans – for many generations (hundreds  of years before before the Pilgrims), many different people had lived in what we now call America. Some of them (a people called the Wampanoag) helped the Pilgrims survive that first terrible winter.  Two weeks before Thanksgiving, we’ll share some of their old stories “folktales” (get kids to help define)
Before science came up with the idea of the Big Bang…Native American pourqoui tales of how the world came to be…

Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest – Gerald McDermott (398.208997 MCD)
A beautifully illustrated (Caldecott honor) retelling of the tale of how Raven stole the sun from the Sky God and gave it to the People.

Song: Mr. Sun (Raffi) (Kindergarten only) 

Fire Race: A Karuk Coyote Tale (California area) retold by Jonathon London  -- All the animals work together to steal fire from the Yellow Jacket sisters so that the People will be able to make fire for cooking and warmth.

Song: “This Little Light of Mine”  lyrics

The Great Ball Game: A Muskogee Story (Georgia) retold by Joseph Bruchac (398.208997 BRU) – To prevent a war, the Animals & the Birds decide to determine which is superior by way of a ball game. Animals have teeth, birds have wings but bat has both – which side will he play on?  Little creatures can make a big difference in this tale that tells why birds have to fly south every winter.

Frog Girl – Paul Owen Lewis (398.208997 BRU)  After all the frogs are carried away from a nearby lake, the Chief’s Daughter ventures under the lake to save her people’s village.
Puppets/Storytelling:  The Frog: A Rainstick Story (adapted from a Hopi Indian tale – source unknown.)  (pupppets: frog, owl, coyote/wolf, prop: rainstick)
Many years ago, there was a drought. No rain had fallen for many weeks. The rivers were dry. The animals had no water to drink. A little frog sitting on the bank of the dry river bed thought to himself.
“I wonder if the rain clouds have fallen asleep and forgotten to make it rain. Perhaps if I make a lot of noise I could wake him up.” He began to croak: “Ribbit. Ribbit. Ribbit.”
The other frogs heard him. “Why are making so much noise?” The little frog answered, “I think the rain clouds have fallen asleep and forgotten to make it rain. I’m making a lot of noise so that they will wake up.”
“We would like to help,” said the other frogs. And they began to croak. {Children in audience} “Ribbit. Ribbit. Ribbit.”
An owl flew over the dry river bed and heard the frogs croaking. “Why are you making so much noise?” the owl called to them. After the frogs explained the owl said, “I would like to help.” He began to hoot “Hoot. Hoot. Hoot.”
Other owls said they would help too. They all began to hoot. {Children in audience} “Hoot. Hoot. Hoot.”
A wolf in the desert heard the noise and called to the owls, “Why are you making so much noise?” The owls explained the situation.
The wolf said, “I would like to help.” He began to howl, “Ow-oo, Ow-oo, Ow-oo.” Other wolves said they would like to help. {children in audience} “Ow-oo, Ow-oo, Ow-oo.”
Soon it began to rain. {Use rain stick} It rained, and rained and rained.
One little frog can make a big difference. “Ribbit. Ribbit. Ribbit.”

optional craft: http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/music/rainstick/

Song: “We’ve got the Whole World in Our Hands” (traditional) lyrics  -- used “frogs in the lake” “birds in the air” “animals in the woods” “mountains and seas” “flowers and trees” “you and me” “whole world”
Discussed how Native Americans cared about the environment, didn’t think people could own the land, the trees, or the wild animals anymore than they owned the sky…

Read selected pages from Brother Eagle, Sister Sky: A Message from Chief Seattle, paintings by Susan Jeffers (811.3 SEA)
(Alternative: Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message by Chief Jake Swamp (299 SWA) – also available as a Reading Rainbow episode)

Song: “Thanks a Lot” (Raffi) lyrics

Common Core Connections:
2.2 Recount stories, including fables and folktales from diverse cultures, and determine their central message, lesson, or moral.
3.2 Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.

Related titles:
Squanto’s Journey: The Story of the First Thanksgiving – Joseph Bruchac (398.208997 BRU)
Tapenum’s Day: A Wampanoag Indian Boy in Pilgrim Times by Kate Waters (974.4 WAT) a photo-essay exploring the life of a Wampanoag boy in the 1620s.
Giving Thanks: the 1621 Harvest Feast by Kate Waters (394.2649 WAT) a photo-essay reenactment as a 6 year old English boy and a 14 year old Wampanoag boy share their stories of what might have happened at that first feast.
1621: A New Look at Thanksgiving – Catherine 0’Neill Grace & Margaret M. Bruchac – illustrated with photographs from the Plimoth Plantation.  Great background info but not a read-aloud.
Eagle Boy: A Pacific Northwest Native Tale retold by Richard Lee Vaughan (Picture Vaughan) – the story of how an abandoned orphan boy is saved by bald eagles and comes to save his people as well.
Maiden of the Mist: A Legend of Niagara Falls – Veronika Martenova Charles (398.208997 CHA)
Owl Eyes –Frieda Gates (398.208997 GAT)
Dancing With the Indians – Angela Shelf Medearis (Picture Medearis)
The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush – Tomie dePaola (398.208997 DEP)
& many of the Paul Goble titles ((398.208997 GOB)
Bedm 11.14

Reading Rainbow: Knots on a Counting Rope -- Native American boy overcomes blindness
Reading Rainbow: Legend of the Indian Paintbrush 

Fall Leaves Fall–Story/Craft Program

Join us as we celebrate the season.  We'll be reading the book Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert, then crafting some imaginative leaf creations of our own. 
If you have found some beautiful fall leaves, bring them along!

Displayed autumn books for kids to browse while waiting for others to arrive.

Entering music (also used while crafting):  John McCutcheon’s Four Seasons: AutumnSongs
Autumn Leaf -- Cut & Tell Story – story & directions here

The Little Yellow Leaf by Carin Berger.  (A lone yellow leaf clings to a giant oak tree  refusing to let go of his branch until the encouragement of a scarlet leaves helps him to overcome his fear of change.)

Action Song (Mulberry Bush variant): This is the way we rake the leaves… jump in the pile, throw leaves in the air…rake them up again…on an autumn day.

Mathematical Moment – Can you guess how many leaves might be in a big tree in your yard?  Solicit guesses….can you believe as many as a million?!?  Showed this Bedtime Math Problem: Raking It In and had kids help figure out the answers.  More Bedtime Math leaf mathematics here.

Book/Song: The Leaves in the Trees by Thom Wiley (mnemonics for leaf identification)

Fall is Not Easy by Marty Kelley (A tree finds some pretty wacky ways to change colors in this light-hearted book.)

Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert (Leaves form people, chickens, fish, cows and many other objects in this artistic and splendidly-creative book.)

Craft stations – play the music CD while children are at work:
  • “Leaf Creatures inspired by Leaf Man -- Materials: 12x18” construction paper, die-cut leaves (real leaves will dry up and fall off), glue sticks, googly eyes, markers/crayons, scrap construction paper.
  • Leaf rubbings – Materials: xerox paper, real leaves newly harvested so not too brittle, crayons with their paper wrappers removed.
11.14 BWL

Thursday, October 9, 2014

School Age Storytime: Apples & Pumpkins

A storytime for K-4th grade celebrating the season emphasizing empathy & compassion, with a great (un-common core) non-fiction component showing the many de-composers (animals, insects, molds and slimes) that make up the life cycle of a pumpkin.

Participatory Storytelling/Props:  The Little Red House with No Doors & No Windows, a Chimney On Top & a Star in the Middle (Tip: instantly turn flannel pieces into hanging signs for kids to wear using plastic paper protector sleeves with stiff paper inserts & yarn ribbon to hang around each child's neck, prop: real apple & knife to slice horizontally.)

Book: One Green Apple by Eve Bunting --This beautiful (and beautifully illustrated) story emphasizes understanding and compassion as Farah, a new student from an unnamed country, goes with her class on a field trip to an apple orchard and finds that though she is different and doesn’t know the language, she can be accepted and will find friends here.

Participatory Storytelling/Props: Big Pumpkin – from the book by Erica Silverman -- In this variant on the folktale, “The Great Big Enormous Turnip,” the witch, ghost, skeleton, and vampire are unable to pull up the pumpkin until a tiny bat ignores their derisive laughter and suggests they all work together.  I sing/chant this to a tune from an old Scholastic recording – feel free to contact me if you want to learn the tune.

Non-Fiction Book: Rotten Pumpkin: A Rotten Tale in 15 Voices* – 577.16 SCHWARTZ – “UnCommon Core” at its best!  -- Told in the first person by the pumpkin, mouse, squirrel, slug, fly, black rot, bread mold, sow bug, Penicillium, earthworm, yeast cell, slime mold, soil, and seed, this is science “on the hoof.”  Wonderful writing & delightfully yucky photographs complete this unforgettable tour through the life cycle of a pumpkin that kids will find completely enGROSSing! 
(Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell and Pumpkin Circle 635.32 LEVENSON offer less-detailed versions for a younger crowd. Sophie’s Squash by Pat Zietlow Miller makes a great fictional companion story.)

Participatory Storytelling/Props: The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything based on the story by Linda Williams

Book: Pumpkins: A Story for a Field by Mary Lyn Ray – A splendid modern environmental myth in which a man, saddened by the thought that the field across from his house is about to be sold, sells everything he has, buys seeds, grows pumpkins, and then sends them all around the world (by planes, trucks, ships, and even flying carpets) to get enough money to buy the field and save it.  (10.14 – omitted in kindergarten, did action song “Five Little Pumpkins Sitting on a Gate” instead.)

Other possibilities – no time in a 40 minute program:
  • Bear’s Bargain – Frank Asch (Bear figures out how he can help Bird feel big & Bird helps Bear figure out how to fly In this tale emphasizing creative problem solving)
  • Sophie’s Squash – Pat Zietlow Miller (girl adopts squash as her doll, then sees it start to change until it is reborn the following year – twin squash!)
  • The Perfect Pumpkin Pie – Denys Cazet (a not-too-scary ghost story with a great refrain – good to make the refrain into a poster and chant it together!)
  • Pumpkin Heads – Wendall Minor (quick book celebrating creative pumpkin carving – great lead-in to a craft)
See also the songs & stories in: http://carolsimonlevin.blogspot.com/search?q=pumpkins

*Other great resources for Rotten Pumpkin:
Rotten Pumpkin Curriculum Guide
Rotten Pumpkin Activities
Rotten Pumpkin Play
Ingram review of Rotten Pumpkin
Interview with the creators of Rotten Pumpkin
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