This week in storytime we discussed teeth. As a child, I really hated going to the dentist (probably because I always had cavities) but I have grown up and seen the error of my ways.
When I decided on this theme, I wondered if there would be good fiction on this topic. We have a lot of nonfiction books that are not very good read alouds. I was very pleased with the books I discovered.
We started with Mrs. Watson Wants Your Teeth by Alison McGhee, illustrations by Harry Bliss.The premise of this book is a bit scary. At the start of first grade, a second grader tells the main character that her teacher, Mrs. Watson is an alien who eats children’s teeth. Luckily, it turns out the second grader is wrong and Mrs. Watson is actually really nice. The Kids really enjoyed this book. I prepared them in the beginning, telling them to be brave. Everyone was relieved that Mrs. Watson was not an alien..
Next we read Clarabella’s Teeth by An Vrombaut.My co-worker had mentioned that she used this book for storytime once and it didn’t work to well. I decided to give it ago because I think that Vrombaut’s illustrations are so fun, they could carry the book on its own. I am glad I went through and read it. The kids loved the repetition of Clarabella’s brushing and brushing and brushing. This also led to a nice discussion about the importance of brushing your teeth. I am pleased to report that almost all of the children brush their teeth “right away” when they get up and “right before” bedtime. I always like to ask kids if they have seen Star Wars. For those who have I ask if they remember The Emperor- that guy definitely didn’t brush his teeth!
Next we read Maisy, Charley and the Wobbly Tooth by Lucy Cousins.Lucy Cousins’ books always work really great in storytime. I think it’s because the kids can really identify with Maisy Mouse and her friends. I wanted to include a book that mentioned dentists, just to reaffirm that dentists aren’t bad or scary.
We closed with Snip Snap! What’s That? by Mara Bergman, illustrations by Nick Maland.For our closer, I took a different turn with the teeth theme. I love reading this book aloud. It can be a bit scary, but it doesn’t have to be if its framed the right way. I sort of used Mrs. Watson as a way to prep and see how scared this group got. Not to worry, these were some brave kids- just like the ones in the story.
For the craft this week, we made super teeth paper bag puppets.
The craft can be found here: http://www.sdcoe.k12.ca.us/smiles/pdf/puppet.pdf
I found some fingerplays that were to the tune of other songs. Interestingly, the kids didn’t really enjoy them so much. They kept asking if we could sing “the real one.” Something to remember for the future.