Garden Storytime

Spring has sprung! The weather is absolutely beautiful and we celebrated today with a garden storytime! This is a lovely theme and is very versatile. I have been looking forward to this storytime for weeks and was so happy to finally share it with my kids.

First we read My Garden by Kevin Henkes.

This is a beautiful book about a girl who helps her mother in the garden and goes on to describe what her dream garden would look like. It’s full of imagination and encourages the children to dream about what their garden would look like.

Next we read A Handful of Sunshine by Meanie Eclare.

This book was a lovely addition to storytime today. It was a surprise find, I just stumbled upon it and am so glad I did. This is why I like it: it has real photos of a real girl planting sunflowers. That doesn’t happen too often with storytime books. Obviously there are lots of fantastic illustrations out there (Henkes’ from the first book are a glowing example) but it is nice to mix it up with something different. This book is a nonfiction and is easy to share with a group. Highly recommended!

Also included this week was Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert.

This is a super versatile storytime book. It would be great in a colors theme and was perfect for gardens as well. The illustrations are bright and vibrant and it contains good information on plants.

We closed with Lenny in the Garden by Ken Wilson- Max.

This is a nice story about a young boy Lenny, who is in the garden with his mom. While I like this book, I do think it is a bit young for the group I had today. I think if I were to use it again, I would use it for baby storytime.

For our craft today, we made our own gardens!

This was a super easy craft preparation wise. I made lots of flowers with our die cut machine, gave them glue, crayons and paper and let them go crazy.

I should mention that my friend, storytime katie, recently did a garden theme as well. If you want more ideas, be sure to check out her blog!

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Tropical Storytime

This week’s theme went through a lot of changes. Let me explain: I wanted to read Pig-Boy: A Trickster Tale from Hawai’i by Gerald Mc Dermott (I talked about it in a Storytime Contenders post post).  I started out with a fable theme, but it just wasn’t working for me. Then I decided to do a Hawaii theme but it was a challenge to find enough books to fit this theme. Finally, I opened it up and settled on a Tropical theme. This just gave me more to work.

I had to remind myself that themes are basically for myself. I know librarians who never use themes. Sometimes I don’t if I have a preschool visit suddenly pop-up or something. I have just found structuring a storytime around a theme to be a good way to focus the storytime for myself. I don’t always announce it to the children and I would be willing to bet some of them have no idea that there ever is a theme.

 So, we started with one of my favorite books set in the ocean I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry.

I think this book is hilarious. For the first time today in storytime, one of the children pointed out that the main character is boasting and “is not very nice.” Everyone was very excited to see what would happen to this boastful fellow. In the end, he is swallowed by a whale and proclaims the he is the biggest thing in this whale. Many of the children noticed that his is NOT, however, the biggest thing in the ocean.

Next we read Hula Lullaby by Erin Eitter Kono.

This is a very nice lullaby story with bits of flavor from Hawaii throughout. This is a nice book to calm everyone down a bit.

We closed with Pig-Boy: A Trickster Tale from Hawai’i.

Since this book was the reason for this storytime, I was super excited to share it with the group. I am pleased to report it was a success! It really held their attention and everyone was very interested in what happened to Pig-Boy. I love it when I share a book no one in the room has read before and everyone is so interested to see how the story ends.

I am also very excited about today’s craft. We made leis! This is a very easy craft to make. I cut out flower die cuts, and gave them yarn and some spacers I made out of cardstock. That was probably the most time-consuming part of the preparation.

Oh! One more thing! There is a new Froggy book I would have loved to have included today but it is new and still on-order at my library and although I put it on hold,  it didn’t come in on time. It’s called Froggy Goes To Hawaii by Jonathan London.