Saturday, April 20, 2019

Repetition in 2s & 3s Storytimes

Toddlers thrive on repetition. So why not cater to this early childhood development principle in storytime? Recently, Lindsey Krabbenhoft of Jbrary posted a 2-part blog series about how important repetition in storytime can truly be. I won't get into the nitty-gritty of it, because I think Lindsey does an amazing job of explaining this piece of early childhood development, but mostly because I want to share with you what repetition I do in my storytimes!


1. The Same Hello and Goodbye Songs

  • In every 2s & 3s storytime, no matter what librarian is presenting, we always use the same hello and goodbye songs. 
  • The hello song is a song I wrote and use with a bubble machine. Toddlers love consistency and order as much, if not more, than they love repetition. The fact that they can always expect bubbles at the beginning of storytime is important. To think one could just omit bubbles for one week -- oh, my, we would have an uprising! 
  • For more information on using a bubble machine in storytime, and for the hello song lyrics, see my post here.
  • Our goodbye song is also the same no matter what, The More We Get Together, and it is a song a lot of people have heard before. Learning the words to these songs helps build participation and engagement from caregivers, too!


2. Rhyme Time
Rhyme time is a segment I place in the mid-point of my storytime. It's a short segment of wiggle-releases, stretchers, and rhymes. I always start rhyme time off by telling caregivers that repeating the same rhymes each week gives the children a chance to learn the words in the song, which is such an underrated takeaway from storytime!! Lately my Rhyme Time has consisted of the following:

Rhyme 1: Wiggle Your Fingers (stretcher)
Wiggle your fingers way up high
Wiggle them way down low, down to your toes!
Wiggle your fingers on your shoulders (where's your shoulders?!)
Wiggle them on your head
Wiggle them on your.......BELLY! belly belly belly! (caregivers and/or children always love this opportunity for some tickles)
...and then put them all to bed. (fold/lace fingers together in front of your chest)
(whisper: shhhhh....goodnight fingers)
(SHOUT: WAKE UP FINGERS! and wiggle them way up high, and then do it all over again)

Rhyme 2: Head Shoulders Knees and Toes
  • This is a popular rhyme, but I want to make a note about it. For toddlers, and even preschoolers, I think that the pace at which this rhyme is usually sung is way too fast for proper comprehension. 
  • We're trying to help our children develop language & literacy skills -- matching body parts to their correct vocabulary word -- we're not trying to disorient them by speeding through. Sure, going super fast may get some giggles, but at least for my 2s & 3s group, I think going slowly is much more important.
  • So, I start this one off by asking questions... "Friends, I have a question for you. Where's your head? (let them find/touch their head), Where's your shoulders... (and so on)" 
  • Only once I have made it through all the questions, and let children mentally prepare for finding these body parts, do I start with the song version. Even then, we go at a moderately slow pace, repeating it twice.

Rhyme 3: Roly Poly

  • A Jbrary classic. The kids love this! 
  • I once had a toddler come up to me in the library (not on a storytime day) and their caregiver explained they wanted to sing this song for me. The power of repetition!! 
  • Toddlers, as Maria Montessori once so famously wrote, have an ABSORBENT MIND. They're soaking up everything around them. So was I surprised when the toddler sang this song I taught her back to me? Not at all! Impressed and dying of toddler cuteness? Of course! 
  • We also sing this one really slowly so that toddlers can hear the words and truly understand them, matching the words with the actions in the song. 
  • Again, if you're going too fast, how can they truly comprehend? Even on the "fast" part of the song, we don't speed it up TOO much. It can still be fun and kind of fast. :)

Takeaways
  • Beginning and ending your storytimes with the same hello and goodbye songs can be a great place to get started adding repetition in your storytimes. 
  • Using props that make an appearance each week are also a great way to add repetition. It doesn't have to be just about repeating same songs! As I noted, it can be reoccurring bubbles, or even the same puppet each week. 
  • Adding a special segment to your storytime in which you repeat the same rhymes and stretchers can also be a great way to introduce repetition in your storytimes. It doesn't *always* have to be the same rhymes. For example, if you do storytimes in 5-week sessions, you can mix it up and change out some rhymes each 5-week block. 
  • Slow it down. Repeating the same songs is great, but if the toddlers don't even know what you're saying, then what is the purpose in the repetition? Slow and steady, my friends!

Bugs

2s & 3s Storytime: Bugs


Books read:
1. Some Bugs by Angela DiTerlizzi
2. I Love Bugs! by Emma Dodd 
3. Butterfly, Butterfly by Petr Horacek

Songs used:
1. Itsy Bitsy Spider (with spider hand-puppet)
2. The Ants Go Marching 
Flutter, flutter butterfly, floating in the sweet spring sky
Floating by for all to see, floating by so merrily
Flutter, flutter butterfly, floating in the sweet spring sky

4. Bumblebee, Bumblebee 
Bumblebee, bumblebee, landing on my nose.
Bumblebee, bumblebee, now he’s on my toes.
On my arms, on my legs, on my elbows.
Bumblebee, bumblebee he lands and then he goes! 

Bug Basket I have a bunch of giant bug figurines that I use as a material in my toddler playgroup program. They're very realistic looking, so I decided to do a short segment in this storytime where I brought one bug out of the basket at a time, and we named them. This is a great for language and vocabulary development!

Repeating Elements in each 2s & 3s Storytime:

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Love!

2s & 3s Storytime: Love!

Hello Song: Little Round Bubble

Book: That’s Love by Sam Williams

Song: Skinnamarink




Book: A Hug is for Holding Me by Lisa Wheeler
I LOVE this book. It is brand new, and beautiful. It worked perfectly for the 2s and 3s storytime. At the end of reading this book, I asked all the children to get up and find their grown-ups and give them a hug. It was so sweet and the caregivers loved it!

Song: We’re Building a Better World
We're building a better world (x3)
One person at a time. 
Chorus:
And the world goes round and round,
the world goes round and round and round. (x2) 
We're building a world with love (x3)
One person at a time 
Chorus
(with hugs, friends, and more suggestions the kids might have!)  

Rhyme Time & Stretches
Stretcher: Wiggle Your Fingers
Stretcher: Head Shoulders Knees and Toes 
Rhyme: Roly Poly 

Last Book: A Kiss Means I Love You by Kathryn Allen
Last Song: Love Somebody, Yes I do!

Love somebody yes I do,
Love somebody yes I do,
Love somebody yes I do
but I won't tell who. 
Jiggle like jelly yes I will,
jiggle like jelly yes I will,
Jiggle like jelly yes I will,
Jiggle like jelly
'cause I can't sit still. 
Climb a ladder, oh so high,
climb a ladder oh so high
Climb a ladder oh so high
till I touch the sky.

Goodbye Song: The More We Get Together

Goodbye Bubbles

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Fish and Bubbles

2s & 3s Storytime: Fish and Bubbles Storytime

Hello Song: Little Round Bubble

Book: Fish Eyes by Lois Ehlert

Song: Bubble, Bubble, POP!
One little red fish
Swimming in the water,
Swimming in the water,
Swimming in the water.
One little red fish
Swimming in the water,
Bubble, bubble, bubble, bubble...POP!

Count up to 5, and ask the kids to help you name different colors!

Book: Hooray for Fish by Lucy Cousins
I experimented with this one... I tried to play the "song" version of the book (on youtube, sound only, no video) while flipping thru. Honestly I think it goes way too fast. So I wouldn't do it again. But it might be fun to sing with kids, especially if you all know the words really well.

Song: Slippery Fish
I showed real laminated photographs on my felt board for each marine animal that we sang about.
Slippery fish, slippery fish
sliding through the water
Slippery fish, slippery fish
Gulp, gulp, gulp
oh no, its been eaten by a... 
octopus, octopus squiggling in the water
octopus, octopus
gulp, gulp, gulp
oh no, its been eaten by a... 
tuna fish, tuna fish
flashing through the water
tuna fish, tuna fish
gulp, gulp, gulp
oh no its been eaten by a... 
Great White Shark, Great White Shark
lurking in the water
Great White Shark, Great White Shark
gulp, gulp, gulp
oh no, its been eaten by a... 
Humongous whale, humongous whale
spounting in the water
Humongous whale, humongous whale
gulp, gulp, gulp
Wiggle release and rhyme time:
1. Wiggle and Wiggle and Stop
2. Wiggle Your Hands Way Up High…
3. Head Shoulders Knees and Toes
4. Roly Poly

Book: (will come back to this... can't remember and didn't have it in my notes!)

Song: The Fish in the Sea (to the tune of "The Wheels on the Bus")
The fish in the sea
Go swish, swish, swish, (wave scarf side to side)
swish, swish, swish, swish, swish, swish
The fish in the sea go swish, swish, swish
All day long. 
Verses:
Dolphins in the sea
Swim round and round (paint circle in front of you with scarf)
The waves on the sea
Go up and down, (wave scarf up and down)

Goodbye Song: The More We Get Together

Goodbye Bubble Play

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Winter


2s & 3s Storytime: Winter


Hello Song: Little Round Bubble


Book: One Mitten by Kristine O’Connell George


Song: 5 Little Snowmen
For a little fingerplay, use your fingers to count down from 5, or you can make this into a felt board song, with 5 felt snowman and take them off as you go.

5 little snowmen, all in a row.
Each with a hat. And a big, orange nose. (point to head, nose)
Out came the sun. And it stayed all day. (big round arms over head)
And one of those snowmen melted away. (fingers coming down, like rain)
4 little snowmen… (continue counting down)

Book: Winter Lullaby by Barbara Seuling

Song: There’s Something In the Snow
There’s something in the snow, now what can it be?
There’s something in the snow that I can’t really see.
Hear its funny sound…HOWL HOWL HOWL
A wolf is what I found!

CAW CAW CAW, A cardinal is what I found!
GRR GRR GRR, A bear is what I found!
WADDLE WADDLE WADDLE, A penguin is what I found!
Continue with any animal you would like. I have everyone pat their knees as they sing. It is great to get a good rhythm going to this tune! I also printed off and laminated photos of each animal (real photos) and held them in my lap. They had to guess the animal based on the sound I made, so once they got the sound, I would hold up the photo. If they couldn't guess it, then I would hold up the photo and then they would get it!


Wiggle release and rhyme time:
1. Wiggle and Wiggle and Stop
2. Wiggle Your Hands Way Up High…
3. Head Shoulders Knees and Toes
4. Roly Poly


Book: Winter: A Pop-Up Book by David A. Carter


Song: Dance Like Snowflakes (with scarves).

Sing it: Slow, Fast, Loud, Quiet, Up, Down 
Dance like snowflakes, dance like snowflakes
In the air, in the air
Whirling, twirling snowflakes
Whirling, twirling snowflakes
Everywhere, everywhere

Goodbye Song: The More We Get Together 
(with signs for only the words "more" and "friends")

Transportation

Preschool Outreach Storytime: Transportation

Hello Song: Bread Butter Marmalade & Jam

When I go to preschool outreach visits, I always use this song for hello and goodbye. It is so much fun to sing! The kids always love it, especially the "let's say hello as loud as we can!" part. They get the opportunity to keep a practice keeping on rhythm and thinking about opposites. The strategy is to end on "as quiet as we can" so I can quickly start talking and introduce the first story. :)

Book: Row Your Boat by Jane Cabrera

Song: Zoom Down the Highway!
Zoom down the highway
Zoom down the highway
Zoom down the highway
Fast! (Clap)
Up goes the drawbridge
Up goes the drawbridge
Up goes the drawbridge
The ship is going past.
Down goes the drawbridge
Down goes the drawbridge
Down goes the drawbridge
The ship has past at last. (so now we can…)
Zoom down the highway
Zoom down the highway
Zoom down the highway
Fast! (Clap)

Book: My Truck is Stuck by Kevin Lewis

Song: City Bus
A hip, a hip, a hippopotamus
Got on, got on, got on a city bus
And all, and all, and all the people said,
"You're squishing us!" (hug)
A sheep, a sheep, a sheep got on a city bus
and all, and all, and all the people said,
"Baaaack up!" (lean back)
A cow, a cow, a cow got on a city bus
And all, and all, and all the people said,
"Mooooove over!" (lean side to side)
Book: I Love Trains! By Philemon Sturges

Song: Chuggin’ (I wrote this one!!)
1 little blue train chuggin’ down the track…
chuggin’ down the track, chuggin’ down the track,
1 little blue train chuggin’ down the track…
chugga chugga chugga chugga CHOOOO CHOOOO!  (use train whistle)
(Up to 5)
Goodbye Song: Bread Butter Marmalade & Jam

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Winter Sweets

Preschool Outreach Storytime: Winter Sweets

I had an interesting "challenge" with planning this storytime visit. One teacher wanted me to incorporate ice cream into the storytime because they were doing a unit on it. Well, the other 2 classes I was seeing that morning were not, but to make life easier on myself I like to do variations on the same them in each room. Here is what I came up with: winter sweets!!


Book: The Reader by Amy Hest
What I like about this book is there is a sweet little narrative storyline that is simple enough for young toddlers to follow. I read this with a group of 3 year olds who were enchanted with it. Then the bigger preschool kids absolutely loved it, as well!








Song: Keep Me Warm! (Tune: Wheels on the Bus)

The mittens on my hands
Keep me warm, Keep me warm, Keep me warm
The mittens on my hands
Keep me warm,
All winter long...

Other verses:
The hat on my head
The scarf around my neck
The boots on my feet 

Book: A Splendid Friend, Indeed by Suzanne Bloom
If I had to do it again, I wouldn't read this book. It takes a lot of explaining, and with my 3s, although they did get a lot of it, they weren't as engaged. I chose it because they drink hot cocoa together at the end, haha.

Song: The Hot Cocoa Song 
I used a bear puppet and 5 "coins" I made out of buttons. I ask 5 children to come up and be helpers. I only do this with the older preschool kids (4 and up). I give each child a "cup of hot cocoa" (cut outs, laminated) and then sing the song:


Down around the corner at the chocolate shop
FIVE cups of cocoa, sweet & hot!
Along comes bear with some money to pay.
He buys himself some cocoa & takes it away…

So then I have bear give a "coin" to the first child and then he sips and burbs (laughs ensue) and says excuse me. Then that child sits down and we do it all over again until there's no more hot chocolate left, and bear is full. :)

Song: The Milkshake Song (with shaker eggs)
Always do this song last! It's great but they get really wound up. I suppose it could be a good half-way-thru-storytime-wiggle-release-song BUT you would have to have a good plan for settling them back down. :)

You take a little milk, pour some milk
And you take a little cream, pour some cream
You’ll stir it all up
You’ll shake it and you’ll see...
Milkshake, milkshake shake it up, shake it up
Milkshake, milkshake shake it all up!
Milkshake, milkshake shake it up, shake it up
Milkshake, milkshake shake it all up!

Other books read with 4s and 5s (not with the 3s)