Tuesday, April 29, 2014

B is for Bunnies!

Who can resist soft, cuddly bunnies in the spring?  I sure can't!

Toddler Storytime presented on Thursday, May 1

Opening Song
Note to Parents and Caregivers:  Children develop motor skills as they perform actions during songs. If they cannot do it on their own, help your child do the actions in the song. You can take your child's hands and help them do an action, however, if your child resists this or doesn't enjoy it, do the actions yourself and let your child participate in their own way.

Hands Are Clapping
(Tune: London Bridges)

Hands are clapping
Clap, clap, clap
Clap, clap, clap
Clap, clap, clap
Hands are clapping
Clap, clap, clap
Hands are clapping!

Toes are tapping… Tap, tap, tap
Fingers are wiggling… wiggle, wiggle, wiggle
Eyes are hiding… peekaboo!

My rabbit has two big ears and a funny little nose.
She likes to nibble carrots, and she hops wherever she goes.

Wee Little Bunny by Lauren Thompson; illustrated by John Butler

Hop Little Rabbit
(Tune: Skip to My Lou)

Hop little rabbit, hop, hop,hop
Hop little rabbit, don't you stop
Hop little rabbit, one, two, three
Hop little rabbit, hop to me!

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
Note to Parents and Caregivers:  Notice that language slows down when we sing...especially in this quieting song. Children find comfort in singing familiar songs over and over again.

Little White Rabbit by Kevin Henkes
This is a great book to read together one on one with your child as they will be able to look for and talk about many details in the illustrations.

Goodbye song
Note to Parents and Caregivers:  Clapping along to the rhythm in songs helps children hear the syllables in words.

This is the way we say good-bye
(Tune: Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush)

This is the way we wave goodbye, wave goodbye, wave goodbye
This is the way we wave goodbye – goodbye, goodbye, goodbye!

This is the way we clap goodbye...

Repeat wave

Activities with pom poms
Note to Parents and Caregivers: Developing fine motor skills, such as grabbing, grasping, and pinching, will aid in hand-eye coordination and strengthens muscles in fingers that are necessary for writing. Playing with pom-poms is a fun way for children to practice these skills. Watch your child closely as they play with pom-poms--or better yet, play with them!

Here are some ideas of ways to play with pom-poms!

1. Put lots of different color and size pom-poms in a large bowl or bin.  Offer spoons, measuring cups, ice cube tray, smaller containers, etc. and allow you child to to explorer and play.  Idea Link 

2. Pull out several color matching pom-poms sets.  Hold up a pom-pom and talk with your child about the color, then ask them to find one that looks the same.  As children get older you can use more color sets.  

3. Encourage your child to sort pom poms into groups by color.  A fun way to sort is to place a colored circle in the bottom of a cupcake tin and have the child place pom poms with the same color in that cup.  Idea Link

4. Tape a paper towel tube on the wall and show your child they can drop a pom pom down the tube.  Children are fascinated with this activity!  Idea Link  

5. Use a clean, recyclable plastic container with a lid (such as a Cool Whip container) and cut holes in the lid.  Put the lid on the container and show your child how they can put a pom pom on the hole and push it through!  Idea Link

Monday, April 28, 2014

Keep a Poem in Your Pocket

April has been National Poetry Day!  We celebrated this month at our Do It Yourself Table!  And April 24th was "Keep a Poem in Your Pocket" Day.  It was a little challenging to come up with a craft to go with poetry...but a kangaroo has a pocket to carry a poem in.  So a kangaroo became our "mascot" for poetry month!

Here's our kangaroo craft--with short (4 line poems) to put into its pocket!  (Idea adapted from this site)

Children were also invited to make up their own poems by cutting out words from old magazines and gluing them onto a paper.

 We also had a kangaroo maze and a kangaroo coloring page.

Alphabet Fun...Final Storytime

To celebrate that we made it all the way through the alphabet this school year our final storytime--Alphabet Fun!

We just read one book today so we would have plenty of time for all the fun alphabet activities.

Everything to Spend the Night: From A to Z  by Ann Whitford Paul; illustrated by Maggie Smith

Some of our favorites!

Little Bird
Little Bird, little bird fly away
What color nest are you in today?
See my post from January for more information about this activity

Parachute Opposites
(tune: The Farmer in the Dell)

The parachute goes up, the parachute goes down
Up, down, up, down
The parachute goes up and down.

The parachute goes fast, the parachute goes slow
Fast, slow, fast, slow
The parachute goes fast and slow.

The parachute goes 'round, the parachute goes 'round
'Round, 'round, 'round, 'round
The parachute goes 'round and 'round.

The parachute goes in, the parachute goes out
In, out, in, out
The parachute goes in and out.

Repeat verse for fast and slow
Then repeat up and down--instructing the children to hide under the parachute when we put it up!

One, Two Buckle My Shoe
1, 2, buckle my shoe
3, 4, shut the door
5, 6, pick up sticks
7, 8, lay them straight
9, 10, a big fat hen!

Enrichment Activities

Wind-up toys

Playdough with alphabet cutters

Pattern Blocks

Magnetic Letters

Teddy Bear Counters

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Z is for Zoo!!

We had a great two days at preschool storytime exploring animals at the zoo!  I could have done this theme for several weeks!!


Who Has This Tail?  by Laura Hulbert; illustrated by Erik Brooks

Two at the Zoo: A counting book  by Danna Smith; illustrated by Valeria Petrone


Animal Riddles
(I hung a variety of animals that live in the zoo (pieces from a two bulletin board sets) along a wall.  I had the children look at the animals then listen to the clues to guess what animal I was describing.  I did 4 or 5 animals).

I live in lakes and rivers.
I eat fish and birds.
I have four legs and a long tail.
I have lots of pretty teeth.
I am an...                     (Alligator)

I'm very, very big.
I have four legs and two big ears.
I like to eat peanuts and hay.
My long nose is called a trunk.
I am an...      (Elephant)

I have two small horns.
I have a long black tongue.
I eat leaves off trees.
I am very tall.
I am a…         (Giraffe)

I am very big.
I have short legs.
I love to eat fruit and grass.
I spend a lot of time underwater.
I am a…         (Hippo)

I live in a group called a pride.
I sleep almost all day and all night!
I like to roar.
I have a large mane!
I am a…         (Lion)

I have black stripes.
I know how to swim.
I like to roar!
I am a…         (Tiger)

I am big and black.
I have long arms and short legs.
My ears look alike like your ears!

I am a…         (Gorilla)

Zoo Animals
(Sung to: If You’re Happy and You Know It)

If you want to be a monkey, go Ohh, Ohh!
If you want to be a monkey, go Ohh, Ohh!
If you want to be a monkey, if you want to be a monkey,
If you want to be a monkey, go Ohh, Ohh!

Parrot — flap your wings
Elephant — swing your trunk
Lion — roar out loud
Kangaroo—hop, hop

Hey Diddle, Diddle

Hey diddle, diddle
The cat and the fiddle
The cow jumped over the moon
The little dog laughed to see such sport
And the dish ran away with the spoon.

What zoo animal jumped over the moon?  Answers included: alligator, tiger, and elephant

Enrichment Activities

Make a lion

Stamp a zoo

Zoo animal matching

On Thursday I also added these activities (but no pictures):

Little People Zoo Set

Sort farm/zoo animals magnet board activity

Thursday, April 10, 2014

S is for Spring!

Outreach Storytime for March 25 and April 7


Spring is Here!  by Will Hillenbrand

Catty Jane Who Hated the Rain  by Valeri Gorbachev

Spring Things  by Bob Raczka; illustrated by Judy Stead

The Very Hungry Caterpillar  by Eric Carle

The children at Kindercare had been asking for the hungry caterpillar so I read that book to them instead of "Spring Things"

Songs/Flannel Board

Hello Springtime!
(Flannel board--sung to "Good Night Ladies")

Hello springtime!
Hello springtime!
Hello springtime!
I hope you're here to stay!

Then we sing hello to lots of springtime things...and we add those to the flannel board.

Blue sky
Green grass

My Garden  (by Jean Warren)
(Tune: "Skip To My Lou")
We first pantomimed getting ready to plant a garden...digging up the earth, deciding on what we want to plant, putting our seeds in the ground and covering them up, etc.

Sun in the sky; shine, shine, shine.
Sun in the sky; shine, shine, shine.
Sun in the sky; shine, shine, shine.
Help me with my garden.

Additional verses:
Rain from the clouds, drip, drip, drip.

Seeds in the dirt, grow, grow, grow.

Rain, Rain 
(Tune: “Row Row Row Your Boat”)

Rain, rain falling down (flutter fingers down)
Falling on the ground
Pitter, patter, pitter, patter

What a lovely sound!

Y is for Year...and its Four Seasons!

The year is winding down...and we just moved from winter to spring...so a great time to celebrate the seasons!


All the Seasons of the Year  by Deborah Lee Rose; illustrated by Kay Chorao

Every Season  by Shelley Roner and Anne Love Woodhull; photographs by Shelley Rotner


"Sound Bus"
This is a repeating song we do every week, focusing on the "letter of the day".  The letter "drives" the bus, and only things that start with that letter can "ride" the bus.  I give clues about the things that are going to ride and allow the children the opportunity to guess.
Sometimes I make up a little story that links all the objects together.  Today we started with Yoda.  While Yoda is riding the bus he will need a snack (yogurt).  The bus ride is really long so he will need a toy to play with (yo-yo).  He decides to knit a hat because his head is cold...he'll need (yarn).  After we add something to the bus we sing:

(tune: The Wheels on the Bus)
The Y on the bus goes /y/ /y/ /y/
/y/ /y/ /y/, /y/ /y/ /y/
The Y on the bus goes /y/ /y/ /y/
On the bus is....Yoda.

Months And Seasons  (Meish Goldish)
January, February, middle of March,
Brrr! In the cold I'm stiff as starch!
Let's make a snowball, sled down a hill.
Wintertime, wintertime, time to chill!

April, May, to the middle of June,
Ahh! What a nice cool afternoon!
Let's fly a kite, and plant pretty flowers.
Springtime, springtime, time for showers!

July, August, middle of September.
Ouch! Got a sunburn I'll always remember!
Let's go swimming, let's eat a peach.
Summertime, summertime, time for the beach!

October, November, middle of December.
Hey! Each day grows shorter than September!
Let's see the leaves fall, let's bake a cake
Autumn time, autumn time, time for a rake!

Hooray for the seasons all through the year,
One just left and another one's here!
I love the seasons, each is a ball:
Wintertime, springtime, summertime, fall.

It's Raining
It's raining, it's pouring
The old man is snoring
He went to bed and bumped his head
And couldn't get up in the morning.

What else did he bump?  Answers included:  back, elbow, knee, eye, and foot.

Enrichment Activities
Four Seasons spinner from 123Homeschool4Me 

Season sort from This Reading Mama


Beads on pipe cleaner