Storytime: Letter I

Welcome Song:

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •  Show kids a flashcard of the letter I.
  •  Sing “The I says iii, the I says iii, every letter makes a sound, the I says iii.”

Book 1: Du Iz Tak?

Activity: I Spy an Insect

  • I brought some plastic insects and hid them around the room. I gave the kids clues about the insects by color and had the kids find them.

Book 2: Charlie Harper’s Animal Alphabet

Activity: “Hokey Pokey”

  •             We sang the Hokey Pokey and emphasized putting hands and feet In

Book 3: Inside Freight Train

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter I ice cream sundae

 

Storytime: Letter R

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:  

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •             Show kids a flashcard of the letter R.
  •             Sing “The R says rrr, the R says rrr, every letter makes a sound, the R says rrr.”

Book 1: Outstanding in the Rain

Activity: Make a rainstorm

  • Give some kids egg shakers, some kids bells, and some kids rhythm sticks. Talk about the different sounds rain makes – shakers are light rain, bells are hard rain, rhythm sticks are thunder. Say “light rain,” “hard rain,” and “thunder” in different orders and have the kids practice listening and following directions to make a rainstorm.

Book 2: Duck! Rabbit!

Activity: “Run, Run, Run”

  •             (to the tune of “Frere Jacques”)

            Run, run, run,

            Run, run, run,

            Hop, hop, hop

            Hop, hop, hop

            Tiptoe very quietly

            Tiptoe very quietly

            Then you stop

            Then you stop

            Kerplop!

Book 3: Curious George and the Rocket

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter R racetrack

Mother/Daughter Book Clubs: Bridge to Terabithia

Book Review:

Bridge to Terabithia is a classic story about friendship. Jess Aarons wants to be the fastest runner in fifth grade and would have been except that a new girl, Leslie Burke beats him. They become best friends and spend their afternoons creating a magical world in the woods behind Leslie’s house. A tragedy occurs and Jess must deal with the loss of his friend. I have always loved this book. It is a beautiful story of friendship and learning what’s important in life. My daughter loved the book as well, and she enjoyed the movie.

Discussion Questions:

1. Why is running so important to Jess?

2. Jess's mother appears to treat him differently than she treats his four sisters. How does that make Jess feel about himself?

3. How does Miss Edmunds respond to Jess's art? Why is that important to him?

4. Why is Leslie unhappy? Does she feel comfortable with the other kids at school, besides Jess? Why or why not?

5. Why do Jess and Leslie create Terabithia? What does Terabithia represent for them?

6. Jess feels that, "Leslie was more than his friend. She was his other, more exciting self- his way to Terabithia and all the worlds beyond." What does this mean?

7. At first, Jess's sister Brenda thinks he doesn't care that Leslie has died. Why does she think that?

8. What did Leslie's friendship teach Jess?

9. Why does Jess throw Leslie's present into the gully? How does he feel about her dying?

10. How do you think Jess will live his life differently because of his friendship with Leslie? What do you think Jess will do with his life?

Food Ideas:

Twinkies, dried fruit, and crackers – the food they ate in Terabithia!

Activity:

We made friendship bracelets with embroidery floss. The girls learned how to make two different kinds and they turned out really cute.

Storytime: Letter P

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Since I work at the Penguin Bookshop, the letter P had to be a Penguin party!

Welcome Song:

  •   (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •   Show kids a flashcard of the letter P.
  •   Sing “The P says ppp, the P says ppp, every letter makes a sound, the P says ppp.”

Book 1: Penguin Problems

 

Activity: Feed the penguin

  • I made a penguin head with a beak that opened and closed. I cut out little fish of different colors and hid them around the room. The kids had to find the fish and when I called out a color, they came up and fed the penguin their fish.

Book 2: If You Were a Penguin

Activity: Penguin Waddle

  • I made beaks for the kids to wear and then told them to act like penguins (waddle, bob their heads, swim, slide on their bellies, eat fish)

Book 3: Playful Little Penguins

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter P penguin

Mother/Daughter Book Club: Brown Girl Dreaming

Book Review:

Brown Girl Dreaming is the story of Woodson’s childhood of growing up during the Civil Rights Movement. It is written in verse and covers her birth through age ten. I loved reading a child’s perspective on the Civil Rights Movement. That was very interesting. I’m not a huge poetry fan and neither is my daughter, so this book was more of a struggle for us. We enjoyed it, but it wasn’t our favorite style of book.

Discussion Questions:

1. Do you enjoy reading a book written in verse or a standard biography/novel better?

2. Do you think it is easier or harder to writer in verse?

3. Can you think of other books that you have read in verse?

4. Even though each chapter/verse is short, do you feel like you got a good sense of 5.the moment or place that the author was trying to convey?

6. In the chapter “Stevie” the author talks about being excited to find a book with people that look like her. Do most books you read have people that look like you or people from other cultures and backgrounds? Why is this something to think about?

7. In the beginning of the book, the author talks a lot about issues that happen in 1963 and the civil rights movement.  How did these issues affect Jacqueline Woodson’s life?

8. Do you agree or disagree that this should be a National Book Award Winner?

9. What do you think about the dad? What about the mom leaving them to go to NYC?

10. What are your favorite characters and why?

(Questions taken from http://www.book-cubs.com/2015/02/09/brown-girl-dreaming-by-jacqueline-woodson/)

Food Ideas:

We had apples with toffee dip, pizza rolls, and banana bread.

Activity:

The girls made journals by decorating the covers of notebooks. They turned out really cute!

Storytime: Letter S

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

 

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •             Show kids a flashcard of the letter S.
  •             Sing “The S says sss, the S says sss, every letter makes a sound, the S says sss.”

Book 1: Land Shark

Activity: “Baby Shark”

  •             Baby shark, do-do-do-do

            Baby shark, do-do-do-do

            Baby shark, do-do-do-do, do-do-doot-doot-doot-do

(Baby shark – wrists together, hands clapping, Mama shark – elbows together, arms clapping, Papa Shark – whole arms clapping, Grandpa shark – wrists together, with fingers folded in like no teeth)

Book 2: Ming Goes to School

Activities: Simon Says and I Spy

Book 3: Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter S snake

 

Storytime: Letter T

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •             Show kids a flashcard of the letter T.
  •             Sing “The T says ttt, the T says ttt, every letter makes a sound, the T says ttt.”

Book 1: Old MacDonald Had a Truck

Activity: “I’m a Little Teapot”

  •   I’m a little teapot,

            Short and stout

            Here is my handle

            Here is my spout

            When I get all steamed up

            Hear me shout,

            “Tip me over

            and pour me out!”

Book 2: Turtle Island

Activity: “Miss Lucy Had a Turtle”

  •   Miss Lucy had a turtle (make a turtle with your hand)

            His name was Tiny Tim

            She put him in the bathtub

            To see if he could swim (swim with your arms)

            He drank up all the water (drink)

            He ate up all the soap (eat)

            And now he’s sick in bed

            With bubbles in his throat

            Bubble, bubble, bubble, bubble, POP! (make your hands grow with the bubbles and clap on the pop)

Book 3: Steam Train, Dream Train

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter T tree

Kids Book Club: Stone Fox

Book Review:

Stone Fox, by John Reynolds, is one of my favorite books and it makes me cry every time I read it. It is very short, only taking about 45 minutes for my sons and me to read. The book tells the story of Little Willy, a ten-year-old boy who lives on a potato farm in Wisconsin with his grandfather. One morning, his grandfather won’t get out of bed after sinking into a deep depression about how much money he owes in back taxes. Little Willy decides to enter a dog sled race against Stone Fox, and Indian that has never lost a race, in order to win the money needed to save both the farm and his grandpa.

Discussion Questions:

1. Where/when does this story take place? Would you have liked to live back then?

2. Why wouldn’t Willy’s grandfather get out of bed?  

3. What would have happened if Willy didn't earn $500?

4. Would you have been able to take care of a farm by yourself?

5. Who was Stone Fox? Was he nice or mean?

6. Where did Willy get the money to enter the dogsled race? Do you think he made a good decision?

7. How did Willy’s age and size help him in the race?

8. What did you think about the end of the race? Did you expect that to happen?

9. Do you think Willy’s grandpa got better?

10. What was your favorite part of the book/least favorite part? Why?

Food:

We ate potato chips, since Willy and his grandpa live on a potato farm, and Sno-Caps, since the story takes place in the snow.

Activities:

1. An Art Project: The kids made origami dogs and popsicle stick dog sleds. The dogs ended up being much more complicated than I’d anticipated, so only a couple kids actually finished them.

 

2. Physical Activity: We went outside and had dogsled races. I tied a rope to our wagon handle and the handle on a baby car. Kids had to sit on the car/wagon while another kid pulled them across the yard. It was pretty funny to watch, and the kids loved it.

Storytime: Letter A

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  •             Show kids a flashcard of the letter A.
  •             Sing “The A says aaa, the A says aaa, every letter makes a sound, the A says aaa.”

Book 1: Amelia Bedelia’s First Apple Pie

Activity: “The Ants Go Marching”

  •             (I made ant puppets and we marched as we sang)

            The ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah!

            The ants go marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah!

            The ants go marching one by one, the little one stops to suck his thumb

            And they all go marching down to the ground, to get out of the rain

            Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom

            (Two by two – the little one stops to tie his shoe; Three by three – the little one stops to             climb a tree)

Book 2: At the Apple Orchard (Pat the Bunny)

Activity: “Five Little Monkeys Swinging in a Tree”

  •             Five little monkey swinging in a tree

            Teasing Mr. Alligator, can’t catch me, you can’t catch me!

            Along comes Mr. Alligator, as quiet as can be

            And snaps that monkey right out of the tree!

            (Four little monkeys…count down to one)

Book 3: Alligator Alphabet

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter A alligator

ABC See, Hear, Do: Learn to Read 55 Words

Hi everyone! Exciting news! My book ABC, See, Hear, Do: Learn to Read 55 Words is now available on Amazon or at your local bookstore.

If you have a child that is ready to learn alphabet sounds and early reading skills, this is the book for you! This method of learning to read is simple, effective, and fun.

For each letter, teach your child the sound the letter makes, not the letter name. Cute animal pictures help teach a hand motion to go with each sound, so your child will see, hear, and “do” the sounds. For all you teacher-types, this process incorporates visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning modalities to teach phonemic awareness. The combination of so many learning styles makes learning and remembering the sounds much easier. And after learning only the first four letter sounds, your child can practice blending sounds together to form words.

This book is not only great for parents, it is a great resource for storytime, preschool, or other school settings.

If you do buy my book and use it, I would love your feedback on Amazon or Goodreads. Thanks in advance for your support!

Happy reading!

Storytime: Letter C

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:

            (to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle, blink, waddle)

Alphabet Song: Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  • Show kids a flashcard of the letter C.
  • Sing “The C says ccc, the C says ccc, every letter makes a sound, the C says ccc.”

Book 1: They All Saw a Cat

Activity: Sort Objects

  • I brought in a bunch of small toys from home and instructed the kids to sort them into piles of objects that started with c and objects ones that didn’t start with c.

Book 2: The Very Hungry Caterpillar

 

Activity: Feed the Caterpillar

  • I made a caterpillar out of an old oatmeal container and put a slit in the lid for its mouth. Then I color-copied the food items from The Very Hungry Caterpillar, laminated them, and had the kids “feed” the caterpillar as I read the story a second time.

Book 3: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter C caterpillar

Kids Book Club: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Book Review:

I am a huge Harry Potter fan, and at this point, none of my kids were into it. L My seven-year-old wanted to watch the movie, so I said we had to read the book first, and then we could have a Harry Potter party. I’m sneaky that way. It was a little frustrating reading it to him, because he had a billion questions and when we missed reading for a few nights, he would end up confused about who everyone was. But we did finish in the end and he liked it. For the party, we invited kids aged 5-10 to come. Everyone had to come dressed in a Harry Potter outfit – we ended up with quite a few Hermiones and even a Voldemort.

Discussion Questions:

1.     Which magical subject would you be most excited to study at Hogwarts, and why?

2.     Which of the Hogwarts houses do you think the sorting hat would place you in? Why?

3.     If you could pick one of the many animals described in this text to be your pet (including Mrs. Norris, Scabbers, Hedwig, Norbert, Fang, or Fluffy) which would you choose and why? What do people's choices in pets reveal about them?

4.     Do you agree with Hermione that "friendship and bravery" are "more important things" than "books" or "cleverness" (16.288-89)? Why or why not?

5.     Who is the most evil person in this book? What makes a person/character evil?

6.     Who do you think the most courageous character is? How is courage defined in this text?

7.     If you looked into the Mirror of Erised, what would you see? What do you think Dumbledore actually saw when he looked into the Mirror?

8.     How would Harry be different if Dumbledore had decided that he should be raised in the magical world, instead of with the Dursleys? Did Dumbledore make the right decision?

(Questions from shmoop.com)

Food:

We ate pizza and chocolate frogs (you can buy a mold on Amazon)

IMG_1942.JPG

Activities:

We sorted everyone with the sorting hat, painted wands, played Quidditch in the back yard, and then watched the movie. For Quidditch, I hung up hula-hoops on either side of the yard. I colored a ping pong ball in with a yellow sharpie for the snitch and hid it in the yard. I used two soft black balls as bludgers and a red soccer ball as the quaffle. I divided the kids into two teams and gave them positions. They had to throw the red quaffle through the hula hoops to score points and if they got hit with a black ball, they had to sit down for thirty seconds. The game ended when the seekers found the snitch. We were able to play a couple of times. By the end the game turned into a huge dodgeball match: my husband vs. all the kids. It was pretty hilarious.

 

Storytime: Letter M

I run Storytime at the Penguin Bookshop and thought it would be fun to share my Storytime plans. While my Storytime is open to all ages, I do gear toward the younger crowd because a lot of 1 and 2 year olds attend. A few of these ideas are my own, but the majority I borrow from my favorite Storytime websites, which include Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, Dog Earned Storytime, and Library Village.

Welcome Song:

(to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell”)

            We clap and sing hello,

            We clap and sing hello,

            With our friends at Storytime,

            We clap and sing hello!

            (wave, stomp, march, wiggle)

Alphabet Song:

  • Use shakers while singing!

Introduce Letter:

  • Show kids a flashcard of the letter M.
  • Sing “The M says mmm, the M says mmm, every letter makes a sound, the M says mmm.”

Book 1: Goodnight Moon

Activity: “Monkey See, Monkey Do”

  • Monkey see, monkey do,

          Little monkey in the zoo

          Monkey, monkey in a tree

         Can you jump around like me?

         (swing tail, clap hands, nod head, chatter, sit down)

Book 2: My Teacher is a Monster

Activity: “Monster, Monster”

  • Monster, monster, turn around

          Monster, monster, touch the ground

          Monster, monster, reach up high

          Monster, monster, touch the sky

          Monster, monster, touch your nose

          Monster, monster, grab your toes

          Monster, monster, touch your knees

          Monster, monster, sit down please

Book 3: Moo!

Review: Show letter flashcard and say the sound again

Craft: Letter M mouse