Mustache Storytime!!!

This theme has been a long time coming. I’ve been so excited about it and actually came up with it a long time ago. I was inspired by a wedding: my lovely friend, Kelly, got married last May. I was lucky enough to be her DJ and point person. I am not an official wedding anything but she thought I could do it and I was happy to help out. So anyway, she is super crafty and creative and came up with having mustaches as favors for the guests. I helped her make these super cute mustaches out of felt and on the big day they were a huge hit! Everyone loved them.

Me and the bride on mustache creation day

Probably on of the cutest things was probably the little kids- especially her super cute flower girl running around with mustaches and I immediately thought of storytime ( I don’t know, that’s just how my mind works). I wanted it to be a true theme with books to match. This wasn’t easy. I enlisted the help of awesome librarians on the Pubyac listserv and they answered my call for help with some great books! Never underestimate the value of asking for help and suggestions. My colleagues, both at my job and in librarianland, are always a huge source of inspiration and aid. I have been so excited about this theme all summer. I couldn’t do it because we all tried to keep our storytime themes in line with our summer reading theme. So now, finally after months of waiting I got to do my mustache storytime!

Initially, I wanted it to be only mustache books. But that just wasn’t working out. There are some good ones out there, but I didn’t know how great they would be for today’s storytime. One in particular is super awesome, Moosetache by Margie Palatini, but it is sort of long and I know that my kids’ attention would be out the window. I think this would be better for an older group such as Kindergarten.

We started this week by reading If You Give A Mouse A Cookie by Laura Numeroff.

This one is always a crowd favorite. I chose it because the mouse gets a milk mustache. It’s a great book to read aloud and lots of fun. Definitely a storytime classic.

Next we read the Runaway Beard by David Schiller.

This is a super fun book about a beard who takes off and tries to find a new home. One of the coolest things about this book is it comes with a beard to wear. I decided to wear it while I read the story.

I can’t believe this entry has two pictures of me with fake facial hair.

Finally, we closed with No Haircut Today by Elivia Savadier.

This book was great for storytime. It has fun pictures and large, bold text. A little boy does not want to cut his hair but his mother is a hair dresser and really wants him to. After he refuses he worries that she is mad at him but learns she is not because she loves him very much. It’s very fun and has a sweet ending.

Our craft this week was mustaches, of course! I just made a template and had them decorate, cut out and stick their mustache on a stick. It was all very cute!

 

Fall leaves

Yesterday was the first day of fall and so today we did a fall themed storytime! This storytime turned out to be much like the leaves storytime that I did last October. Now that I am looking back, the craft and the books are very similar. Generally I try not to do exactly the same thing, but sometimes it does happen. I guess it is a different group of kids each year and it’s been a while. The librarians who do the baby and two-year old storytimes will cycle through themes each year and refresh with new titles. What do you think? Do you have any opinions on having similar/repeating storytimes?

Anyway, on to the storytime! First we read Leaf Trouble by Jonathan Emmett, illustrated by Caroline Church.

This is a cute story about a squirrel, Pip, who is stressed out by all of the leaves falling off of his favorite tree. This is a sweet story, although it is a bit long. I read it first because I knew that my group would be the most fresh right away at the beginning rather than the end of storytime.

Next we read Don’t Worry Bear by Greg Foley.

Another cute story, this one features a little bear who is worried about his friend, Caterpillar, who has spun a cocoon. This one is not exactly about fall or leaves but it is a nice story about friends and the kids really enjoyed it. In fact, I had all of the books out for them to see and they requested it next!

Finally, we finished with Leaves by David Ezra Stein.

I really love this book, I used it last year and the year before that and had to use it again. There is something about the simplistic story and beautiful illustrations that make me really love this book. It’s such a simple but perfect way to discuss fall.

I need to mention a fingerplay that goes well with this theme that was a huge hit this morning:

Leaves on the Tree (to the tune of The Wheels On the Bus)

The leaves on the trees turn orange and brown,
orange and brown,
orange and brown,
The leaves on the trees turn orange and brown all over town

The leaves on the trees come tumbling down,
tumbling down,
tumbling down,
The leaves on the trees come tumbling down all over town.

The leaves on the ground go swish, swish, swish,
swish, swish, swish,
swish, swish, swish
the leaves on the ground go swish, swish, swish all through the town.

 

We also did a fun flannel board activity. I put a tree up on the flannel board with lots of leaves and each child came up and pulled a leaf off and placed it in a pile at the bottom. This was a lot of fun for everyone.

Finally, I can’t forget the craft! This was very simple but still very succesful. I think because of the use of glue sticks. Using leaves from the dye cut machine, the children glued them onto a larger leaf and colored if they wanted. This age group loves to glue! They could have glued leaves all day long!

Twinkie Creations

I recently started a new tween group at my: TAG (Tween Activity Group… I thought TWAG sounded silly). We weren’t having a lot of luck with attendance at tween programs so I decided to sort of copy our YAC (Youth Advisory Council) and start a somewhat similar tween group. I am using former YAC programs that were proven successes to start with the hopes that it will help build momentum. For our inaugural TAG we did a truly awesome program. I didn’t make it up, so I can’t take any credit but it is so stupendous I had to share…. Twinkie Creations!!!

How this work is you provide Twinkies and lots of great supplies and let the participants get creative and make some awesome creations. Possible supplies include but are in no way limited to:

  • frosting,
  • food coloring,
  • marshmallows
  • chocolate chips
  • coconut
  • sprinkles

After everyone made their creations, we voted on random categories. I instituted the rule that no one was allowed to vote for themselves. This could really be anything but tonight I used these categories:

  • best use of supplies
  • most life-like
  • cutest creature
  • craziest creature
  • most delicious looking
  • best overall

The best part of this is really the creations themselves. Here are some awesome examples created by the TAG kids.

I really like this one. I was informed that it’s a cowboy. I think she added some pants after the picture was taken.

This one has great teeth! Very fierce!

We’ve had a bit of a debate about this one around the library. Maybe a submarine? Maybe a creepy crawly bug? Great use of supplies.

I think this one was some sort of spaceship. It also sort of reminds me of a toothache!

There were so many more (20 participants in all!) and each and every one was very creative and totally awesome!

Dog Storytime

Our fall storytime session began again today and I am super excited to be doing our 3-5 year old storytime again this year! I had a whole new group this fall because most of last year’s group had grown out of storytime and graduated on to kindergarten.  I was accustomed to an older group and a lot of these kids are on the younger side of the 3-5 range so that sort of changed things for me. But, that being said it was super fun! Everyone was so excited to be in storytime and that always makes it more fun for me. Anyway, on to the storytime!

This week’s theme was dogs. I can’t believe I’ve never done a dog theme before! The first book I read was I Don’t Want a Posh Dog by Emma Dodd.

I really love Emma Dodd’s books. The illustrations are super fun and they stories are alway a joy to read aloud. This book was no exception. It’s all about a girl who knows exactly what kind of dog she does not want. I know that the kids got a kick out of and it made for a good first book for this storytime.

Next we read Hunky Dory Ate It by Katie Evans, illustrated by Janet Morgan Stoeke.

Once again, this was a very fun book with rhyming text. It’s a very simple story, Hunky Dory eats everyone’s food and then she gets sick. This was a great book for making predictions. After each page I would ask the kids what would happen next… of course it was Hunky Dory ate it!

After that we read Do Your Ears Hang Low by Caroline Church.

This book is a cute depiction of the classic song “Do Your Ears Hang Low?”.  It was lots of fun to read and then afterwards we sang the song with all of the motions.

There are lots of dog crafts out there. I ended up finding this week’s craft in an old file from a long time ago. Sometimes I like using those crafts. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel each week.

We made a dog house this week. It’s very basic. The kids just cut out a dog and a house, glued it on a sheet of paper and then decorated it.