Robot, Zombie, Frankenstein Story Time

I really need to update this more, we do so many fun things at the library and I should document them! I have been so busy though! We lost one of our part-time employees and have been training a second, very time consuming.

In the midst of training, however, we had a wonderful story time featuring Robot Zombie Frankenstein by Annette Simon. I paired the book with The Three Little Aliens and the Big Bad Robot by Margaret McNamara and If You’re A Monster and You Know It… by Ed Emberley. All three books were really great and the kids loved them, of course. I always know that any book about pirates, ninjas, robots, monsters (especially zombies) and aliens will do well at story time!

We started off story time by reading Robot Zombie Frankenstein. The kids really listened to this book. I think the combination of bright, vivid illustrations and easy to follow dialogue helped. We talked about what kinds of robots they would build if they had a chance and then I handed out an amazing activity pack from Annette Simon’s website.

Robot Zombie Fridge
“Mine can fly AND jump really high!” – Creator

The kids enjoyed doing the packets while I set up for the robot building craft. I had them sit at the table and read them The Three Little Aliens and the Big Bad Robot. They were a little wound up, but eventually calmed down enough to where they were listening well. I then gave them scrap paper (from past projects) and let them create a their own robot/monster/whatevers.

Robot Zombie Florist

When they had finished their craft, we rounded out the story time by dancing to If You’re a Monster and You Know It… and singing along. Fabulous story time, with fabulous books, by fabulous authors!

Robot Zombie War Machine
The book his robot is holding is titled “The Ancient War”

Attack of the Robots!

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Spring Has Sprung Story Time

Before this nasty bit of hot weather, we had a few weeks of glorious spring weather. In celebration of the birds singing and the flowers blooming, I decided we would make spring tree boughs.

The kids loved the craft, especially since they got to use glue and “shiny things.” I thought the craft turned out wonderful, with each of the kids creating a different picture. A few of them made fields of sequin flowers, some made a single branch and a couple made an entire tree.

I chose two wonderful books about spring to read to the kids. The first one is called And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano. I have never read any of her other books, but this one has definitely gotten my attention!

It’s a beautiful book about a boy who plants a garden while there is still “brown” around. Brown grass. Brown leaves. Brown weather. He wonders why his garden isn’t growing throughout the seasons…

And Then It’s Spring…and it’s green all around.

I would definitely recommend this book. The prose is poignant and the illustrations are gorgeous. The story might hit home with adults a bit more than preschool children, but the kids were very attentive and asked questions about the illustrations. Any book that promotes discussion among pre-readers is ok in my book!


The second book that I read was It’s Spring by Samantha Berger. It is a board book, but the rhyming prose is just too cute. The kids had me read it to them twice! The second time they tried to say it with me, which I thought was adorable. The kids really liked the little rabbit and the rhyming goes something like:

” The robin told the rabbit…
The rabbit told the deer…
The deer told the duck…
Then all the birds began to sing
To tell the bears, “Wake up, it’s spring!”

Then it was on to the crafts. The kids sat at different tables and started creating their spring scenes!

The kids getting down to business with their pictures.

I just used some left over blue printer paper, crayons and each child had a small cup of sequins and pieces of tissue paper.

You can see in the picture that each of them created something unique and different! A few of the kids were a bit older and they always seem to try and replicate the example that I give them.

Though I always try to use glue sticks, the sequins don’t really work well with anything beside white glue. The younger kids were THRILLED to get to use the white glue and it was good practice for them since most will be going into kindergarten shortly.

Having a few older kids at this story time was great. They were a big help with the younger ones!

The table of older kids really liked the craft too. I let them do several pictures since they were getting so into it. The creativity of all the kids was really astounding! Even though I had just shown them a picture of a fairly mundane tree bough, their trees had curly branches, sequin birds and falling leaves.

One of the little girls picked out all the pink, clear and white sequins. Her entire tree branch matched the little pink dress she was wearing and when I asked her what her favorite color was she pointed to the pink sequin bird she had made.

I will definitely do this craft again! Maybe a Christmas tree?

After story time, the kids and their parents picked their books for the next two weeks. I always love to see the way the kids interact with their parents when choosing books. It’s wonderful to see the kids so excited to read!

All Aboard for a Train Story Time!

Choo Choo! All Aboard for a Train Story Time


BooksThe Last Train by Gordon Titcomb; Steam, Smoke, and Steel: back in time with trains by Patrick O’Brien, Train Song by Harriet Ziefert


Activity: Have the kids line up and lead them around the meeting room like a train. Have them speed up, slow down, stop, zig-zag etc… You can make little signs for them to wear and even have the lead “train” wear a little conductor hat and bandana. Let the kids switch up so they can be different parts of the train.

Crafts: Make trains from graham crackers. Use the icing as glue (like a gingerbread house) and make “wheels” out of candy. If that is too time consuming, have the kids make trains out of construction paper or tissue/shoe boxes

Extra: Show Thomas the Tank Engine clips from YouTube or show All About fast trains & airplanes

Lets Paint! Story Time

Let’s Paint Story Time
Books:  Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh, Old Black Fly by Jim Aylesworth, Willow by Denise Brennan-Nelson

  Activity: Flannel or construction paper mice as you read Mouse Paint

The templates for these are very simple.

Craft:  Have kids paint on butcher paper spread out on the table. Draw circle and label each with
the name of a paint color. Have kids match up the paint with its name. Print off a mouse on
white paper and let the kids paint it (fingerpaint)

Extra:  Show Mouse Paint movie from YouTube by hooking laptop up to the television

 

All About Me! Story Time

Self-esteem is the real magic wand that can form a child’s future. A child’s self-esteem affects every area of her existence, from friends she chooses, to how well she does academically in school, to what kind of job she gets, to even the person she chooses to marry.

STEPHANIE MARTSON, The Magic of Encouragement

Story time is suppose to be fun. Kids expect fun animal crafts and exciting songs about pirates, the whole horse ‘n’ pony show (so to speak). While I agree that 99% of story time’s should be exactly like this, I also feel that I have an obligation to teach children about more important issues. Issues like body image, nutrition and self-esteem are often overlooked because they don’t appear to be as much fun to plan. These issues will plague them into adulthood and I want them to remember that the library will always have the information to help them.

A few Wednesdays ago, I decided to have an “All About Me” story time. I searched the internet and came up with an idea for the kids to create name banners. I made these out of paper plates, construction paper and glitter.

They enjoyed making these.

We read a few different books, which they enjoyed because they got to tell me stories about themselves after each one. It even helped some of the kids who aren’t so talkative and tend to be a little shy.  Each of the kids enjoyed taking the banner home and they were showing it off to their parents after story time.

Books We Read:
Incredible Me!  by Kathi Appelt
I Like Myself by Karen Beaumont
Being Me by Julie Broski
For just one day by Laura Leuck

I also made them a handout that asked them questions about themselves. The handout had things like, “My favorite color is________.”, “If I was an animal I would be ____________.”, “The toy I love the most is ________.”

After I had read the stories we talked about what we liked about ourselves, what our favorite things are and why we like them. It was nice to hear some of the kids say that they really liked who they were!

>Giddy Up and Read: Wild West Story Time

>As the children’s progammer I am in-charge of our Pre-school Story Time every wednesday.

This Wednesday we had a Wild West Story Time, which the kids really enjoyed!

Books read:
Widdermaker by Pattie Schnetzler
Desert Rose and her highfalutin hog by Alison Jackson
I want to be a cowgirl by Jeanne Wills

Other books displayed:
The foot-stomping adventures of Clementine Sweet by Kitty Griffin
The cowboy ABC by David Hamilton-Murdoch
Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa by Erica Silverman
The brave cowboy by Joan Anglund-Walsh
Tyrannosaurus Tex by Betty Birney

I had all of the kids sit around on the floor and made a “fire” using toilet paper tubes, sticks and made construction paper flames. I read Desert Rose and Her Highfalutin Hog and then we sang a campfire song called “The Campfire Pokey” (see below) which got the kids up and moving. After that I read Widdermaker and we played a ring toss game. I had made a quick cactus out of cardboard and rings out of pipe-cleaners, they had a lot of fun and I gave them sheriff’s stars with their names on them that I had cut out using the Cricut. We read the final story I want to be a cowgirl and then colored cowboys/girls that I got from HERE. We finished by gluing the dolls together and I sent them home with “take home paper.” I make a take home paper every week and it is normally a two column sheet. In the first column I type a little poem or song, paired with some cute clip art that fits the theme. In the second column I paste a picture they can color or a bookmark they can cut out. On this weeks take home paper they got “She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain” and a section of “Cowboy Lingo.” The coloring side had a cowboy with a lasso.

Next Story Time Theme: Bang! Boom! Crash! A Fourth of July Story Time