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!

Fishy storytime

This week’s storytime was all about fish. There are so many great fish books out there, it is hard to pick just a few for storytime.

We started with Smiley Shark by Ruth Galloway.

This is a fun story about a shark who scares away all of his potential friends with his huge smile. Luckily, they learn the value of having a friend like him and they end up being friends. This is a fun book to read in storytime because the kids always think the shark is going to be mean, even though the title clearly states that he is smiley. It always leads to a fun discussion.

Next we read Bright Stanley by Matt Buckingham.

This is about a little fish named Stanley who loses his friends. That seems to be a theme with fish books. Anyway, he is shiny and bright and that helps him find them. This is an exciting book to read just because of the foiled scales on Stanley, the kids really like that. It’s in the same vein as the Rainbow Fish books by Marcus Pfister.

We only read two books today because we played some games and also did a fun flannel board. I gave each child a different color piece of felt and they added it to the fish on the board. I have done this before and everytime it’s a huge success. I call out the colors by name so they have to identify what color they are holding and then get to come up.

Our craft was a similar idea. They had to put scales on fish. This craft is very much like the craft I did for a previous fish storytime except this time I used a paper plate and they tore the scales from paper. I don’t know which one was more popular. They both worked great!

The picture isn’t the greatest of the actual craft, but this is the best one I was able to get. You can see the paper plate fish on the left. My favorite part of the picture is actually hard to see. One of my favorite storytime kids (who am I kidding, they are all my favorite!) made an all yellow fish, you can see it on the right. He told me it was his own Stanley to take home. The same child came up to me prior to storytime and said “I AM SO EXCITED FOR STORYTIME MISS SARAH!!!!” It melted my heart. And that, my friends, is the perfect example of why I have the absolute best job in the whole world.