Saturday, February 18, 2017

Process Art

An internal blog post

Over the last few months I have tried to add more process art to my play and learn.  I usually do some kind of project the children can take home; though not every week.  Doing these projects during storytime is optional, but I have found that children really enjoy process art.  And the best part?  Less prep time for you!

Process art is, of course, all about the process…the doing it on their own, the exploring, the learning…and not what they make per se.  Process art will not have a “sample” to follow, will have limited (if any) instructions, a variety of supplies will be available, and each child’s art piece will be unique.  

It’s good to know what process art is, but defining what it isn’t is also important.  First and foremost process art is not a “free-for-all”.  Guidelines are always a necessity when working with children.  Yes, we want them to try new things and experiment, but not at expense of ruining the experience for others or wasting resources.  For example, it is OK to mix paint colors on your own paper, but not OK to mix paint colors in their containers; nor is it OK to paint the wall behind you. 

Two other important things to keep in mind when doing process art with young children.
  • We can limit which supplies are available for use If you just really can’t do paint, you don’t have to offer it.
  • You can still have a general project idea in mind.

Here are some samples of a few process art activities I have done in storytime recently.

Create your own creature—supplies included: construction paper (shapes left over from a different project), googly eyes, pom-poms, feathers, yarn, scissors, glue sticks, and crayons.  See how completely unique each creature is?

Here’s our Valentine’s Day art project.  Supplies:  scissors, glue sticks, crayons, white paper, pink and red paper folded in half with heart traced on them. 

One last tip about process art:  ask yourself "what will the children do?" instead of "what will the children make?" 


What process art have you done—or will try—in your storytimes?

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Hugs and Kisses Storytime

I did this theme at a few outreach storytimes and an all ages storytime in the beginning of February and a preschool storytime on Valentine's Day!

Books

Who Wants a Hug?
by Jeff Mack

No More Kissing!
by Emma Chichester Clark

Songs

ABC Welcome

H-E-A-R-T
There is a shape that I can make
That shows that I love you
H-E-A-R-T
H-E-A-R-T
H-E-A-R-T
A heart shows that I love you!

There is a shape that I can make
That shows that I love you
H-E-A-R-(clap)
H-E-A-R-(clap)
H-E-A-R-(clap)
A heart shows that I love you!

Continue taking one letter away...

If You're Happy and You Know It: Love Edition

Jump up and down
Give a hug
Blow a kiss

Hop, Hop, Stop!

Animal Good-byes

Play and Learn

  • Puzzles
  • Counting Cars
  • Busy Bag: Paper Clip Colors
  • Heart Matching
  • Cut out hearts!








Sunday, February 12, 2017

Thursday Thing: STEM

STEM challenges for the week included building with plastic cups, jumbo craft sticks, and blocks!









Monday, February 6, 2017

Fantastic Beasts Storytime

A really fun storytime from a few weeks ago...

Books
Troll and the Oliver
by Adam Stower

If I had a Gryphon
by Vikki Vansickle; illustrated by Cale Atkinson

Graph Question

Which mythical creature would you like to meet?
Bigfoot (4)
Mermaid (4)
Unicorn (6)
Dragon (7)

I changed the "voting" up a bit, that seems to be working much better.  I have buckets for the four choice that they put their smiley face in.  The children can take their time choosing, late comers still get to vote, and it doesn't take as much time.


After our opening I get the buckets and we count the smiley faces as we put them on the graph.
I think the kids "get it" more doing it this way.

Songs/Magnet Board

ABC Welcome

Color Unicorns (Credit: Story Time Secrets)

I saw five little unicorns - creatures from folklore.
I watched the blue one prance away and then there were four.

I saw four little unicorns resting by a tree
I watched the orange one prance away, and then there were three.

I saw three little unicorns, but as near to them I drew,
The green one pranced away, and then there were two.

I saw two little unicorns - I watched them run and run.
The red one pranced away, and then there was one.

I saw a lonely purple unicorn standing in the sun.

When I blinked my eyes, it pranced away, and then there were none.

If You're Happy and You Know It

My Hands

Play and Learn

I have been trying to do more "process art" instead of crafts.  The kids had a great time today making their own mythical creature with lots of googly eyes, colored paper, feathers, pom-poms, yarn, scissors and glue!








I also had out a variety of toys, but the art was definitely a big hit!

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Marvelous M Storytime (x2)

Last week I was asked last minute to do an all ages (preschool and toddler) storytime, so I grabbed the storytime stack I was working on.

Books

Five Little Monkeys Bake a Birthday Cake
by Eileen Christelow

Kitten's First Full Moon
by Kevin Henkes


The Magic Hat
by Mem Fox; illustrated by Tricia Tusa
When I read this book I like to tell them that I am going to read it the way Mem Fox, the author, read it when I meet her at a conference.  (In fact, I don't think I could read it any other way!)

Songs/Rhymes/Flannel

Hands Are Clapping

M-O-U-S-E
There is a little ball of fur
Nibbling on my cheese
M-O-U-S-E
M-O-U-S-E
M-O-U-S-E
And Mouse is his name-o

Because we were doing the letter M we took the letters away backwards; leaving the M until last

There is a little ball of fur
Nibbling on my cheese
M-O-U-S-(clap)
M-O-U-S-(clap)
M-O-U-S-(clap)
And Mouse is his name-o

Continue taking letters away from the back each verse.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

My Hands

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Hop, Hop, Stop!

Play and Learn

  • Playdough!  (we finally got a child's height table, so we had to try it out with some playdough!)
  • Felt Button Chain
  • Sewing Cards
  • Blocks
  • Mouse ABC Dot-to-Dot


This week I did my usual Preschool storytime and I had a little more time to prep, plus I had older kids.

Books

Too Many Moose
by Lisa M. Bakos; illustrated by Mark Chambers

Five Little Monkeys Bake a Birthday Cake
by Eileen Christelow

Graph Question
If I got to eat a treat that starts with the letter M I would choose...
marshmallows (5), milkshake (2), muffin (2), M&Ms (7)

Songs/Rhymes/Flannel

ABC Welcome

My Kitten's Mitten
Flannel made by a creative co-worker!

My poor little kitten lost her mitten
And started to cry, boo-hoo.
So I helped my kitten to look for her mitten.
Her beautiful mitten of BLUE.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Under my mother's bed.
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored RED.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Under my father's pillow.
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored YELLOW.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Stuck on my princess crown
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored BROWN.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Under my new magazine.
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored GREEN.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Inside a grocery sack.
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored BLACK.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Under the kitchen sink.
But, alas, the mitten was not the right mitten,
For it was colored PINK.

I found a mitten just right for a kitten
Inside my favorite shoe.
And this time the mitten was just the right mitten,
For it was colored BLUE.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

My Hands

Play and Learn

  • Magnets
  • Musical Instruments
  • Stamping letters
  • Making Pizza Felt Sets
  • Mouse ABC Dot-to-Dot

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Winter Baby Storytime (x2)

So excited to be with my babies after having a day off last Friday!

Rhymes/Songs/Bounces

Hands are Clapping
Hello Song
Little Bear
When Cows Get Up in the Morning
Roly-Poly
Tiny Little Babies
Jingle Bells
The Wheels on the Bus
Pease Porridge Hot
Toast

Read Aloud Book

No Two Alike
by Keith Baker

Play and Learn

Parachute (recording of Jingle Bells)

Coloring--I covered a table with white butcher paper and collapsed the legs so it was laying on the floor.  Several children wandered back there to color, a few even walked or laid on it!  It was a fun new activity to try.  We will definitely do it again sometime!


Another winter-themed baby storytime the next week...

Read Aloud

Snow Babies
by Laura Ellen Anderson

Shared Reading

A variety of board books featuring winter or cold weather animals including:

Who Can Swim?
by Sebastien Braun

Snowman Shuffle
by Christianne Jones

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Home Sweet Home Storytime

Another storytime I developed after reading a new picture book (Good Night Bat) that I really liked.  I actually found quite a few other "home" books.

Books


Good Night Bat Good Morning Squirrel
by Paul Meisel 

Whose House?
by Barbara Seuling; illustrated by Kay Chorao

Graph Question
If people didn't live in houses, where would you like to live?
Pond, Nest, Burrow, Cave
Cave was the winner with 6

Songs

ABC Welcome Song

The Ants Go Marching

Hop, Hop, Stop!

Play and Learn
  • Color and cut matching game (animals and their homes) from KidzClub
  • Puppets
  • Blocks
  • Felt Button Chain
  • Tangrams
  • Pool Noodle Blocks
  • Sort plastic animals by where they live