Family Storytime: Zoo

Hi Guys,

Got another fun family storytime for you this week! And I am experimenting with using our projector instead of printed flannel boards–not a fancy one from the ceiling, so we’ll see how it goes. My theme this week is anything having to do with the zoo or zoo animals.

Here’s what I’ve got planned:51R7ai3HhjL._SX260_

  • SONG – Top of the Morning
    • This is a fun tune and great for waking up and doing a little stretching. It’s called Top of the Morning.
  • ASL – The More We Get Together
    • We first teach the kids the signs for: More, Together, Happy & Friends. Then incorporate the signs as we sing the song. Check out Signing Savvy or Baby Sign Language to learn these signs.
  • Movement Rhyme – Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
    • Who doesn’t love this one! We get faster and faster each time51sqfs2btgjl-_sx484_bo1204203200_ we go through it.
  • Movement Rhyme – Monkey See, Monkey Do…
    • This is a fun rhyme that get’s kids acting like monkeys!
  • Book – I AM A Cat! by Galia Bernstein
    • This is a new one for our library and educational! We’ll see how it goes.
  • Song – We’re going to the zoo by Raffi
    • A zoo themed song to take a little movement break with.
  • Rhyme – An Elephant Goes Like This And That…
    • Who doesn’t love pretending to be an elephant!
  • Flannel Board – Dear Zoo by Rob Campbell
    • I made this flannel ages ago and haven’t used it in a while! 20160812_170127
  • Game – Sleeping, Sleeping All the Children Were Sleeping…
    • This is one my mom actually taught from when she was nannying. You put all the children to sleep and when they wake up they are… cats, lions, mice, butterflies. Just make sure you turn them back to kids before you finish.

Sleeping, sleeping all the children were sleeping and when they woke up they were… LIONS! (pick different animals). Sleeping, sleeping all the little lions were sleeping and when they woke up they were…

  • Book – Monkey and Me by Emily Gravett 51DbuiIYDuL._SX260_
    • A nice, easy and repetitive story about what a girl and her monkey saw at the zoo.
  • Puppet Rhyme – Alligator, Alligator
    • This is one you can do with a puppet or with your hands and arms. I generally use a puppet but I show the kids how to do it with their arms first.

Alligator, alligator long and green. Alligator, alligator teeth so me. Chomping at a fly, chomping at a bee, chomping at a bird but you can’t catch me!

  • Song/Shakers – Happy from Despicable Me 2
    • “because we’re happy…” am I right?
  • ASL – The More We Get Together
    • I like to end with the same sign language song we used in the beginning.
  • Song – Clean It Up
    • Any good clean up song will work.
  • Song – Goodbye, So Long, Farewell by Music Together
    • I will always put this one on in the background as everyone leaves because I just love it!

How’d it go: This one went really well and I did much better with time then I usually do. I did decide to nix the “I AM A Cat” in favor for “How Much Does A Ladybug Weigh?” It was shorter and still had that non-fiction element to it. Other than that, everything else went off without a hitch!

That’s all for now!


Family Storytime – Zoo

Hi Guys,

This morning I did my first family storytime of the season. Family stortime can be a little daunting with such a variety of age groups. You have to over prepare so you can change things up if your audience leans younger or older. I like to do as many movement and action exercises as I can. Tire those kiddies out for a bit!

For today’s storytime theme we went to the Zoo! (I’ll try to add links where I can)

51sqfs2btgjl-_sx484_bo1204203200_I like to start and end my storytime the same way every week. The repetition becomes familiar to the kids and it helps them know when we are getting near the end. I always start with:

  • Song – Top of the Morning
    • This is a good song to warm up with because we stretch all the parts we will be using in storytime. Eyes, arms, legs, mouth, nose.
  • Rhyme – Say Hello
    • love this rhyme. Everyone claps along and at the end we say hello how ever I tell them to. Loud, soft, quick, slow.
  • Movement Exercise – Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
  • Song – Skidamarink

I love to get my kids and grownups warmed up with lots of movement and everyone loves saying hello in lots of different ways.

Today, I had to have my storytime in a smaller room then usual so I planned a variety of activities that I could tweak if we were too squished. 51ufnmqonhl-_sy458_bo1204203200_

  • Action Rhyme – Monkey See, Monkey Do
    • This is a great one because you get everyone involved by doing different monkey movements.
  • Story – A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. Stead
    • This book was a bit long for my audience. I had to shorten it and sort of spin the tale myself to keep the younger ones interested.
  • Song – We’re Going to the Zoo by Raffi
    • A quick easy song — gives you time to get a drink while the grownups clap along.
  • Flannel Board – Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell
    • If you make the flannels the way I did, there is a big reveal for each of the animals.
  • Game – All the Children Were Sleeping
    • This is a game my mom taught me (she’s a nanny). You go “sleeping, sleeping all the children were sleeping. And when they woke up, they were ____.” Lions, tigers, bears. You get the kids to act out different movements and sounds. It’s a big hit for my kids. Remember to turn them back to boys and girls at the end!
  • Puppet – Alligator, Alligator
    • Typical puppet prop. I had the kids use their arms to be alligators along with my puppet.
  • Action Rhyme – There was a Crocodile…
    • This was a new one for me thanks to Jbrary. It was a bit long for my crew BUT they loved it and we were all laughing by the end.
  • 61sm7vmaoel-_sx419_bo1204203200_Story Props – My Heart is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall
    • We didn’t actually get to this one today. But I’ve done it in the past and it is such a quick easy one. I have print outs of the pages on popsicle sticks.
  • Action Rhyme – An Elephant goes like this and that
    • We didn’t get to this one today either.
  • Story – Row, Row, Row Your Boat by Jane Cabrera
    • This was a great last story. My grown ups kept saying the normal row your boat rhyme and I just threw in the sound effects here or there until they realized that wasn’t how the story went.

Finally, I always end with the same three things:

  • Movement Exercise – If You’re Happy and You Know It
    • I tell the kids that I want to know how happy they are. We do this three times, faster and FASTER each time.
  • Rhyme – Say Goodbye
    • This is the same rhyme we started with, so the new guys are familiar with it by the end of storytime.
  • Song – Goodbye, So Long, Farewell my Friends by Music Together
    • I always put this one on as I go to open the door. Its a nice, slow, peaceful song to wind down on.

How’d it all go? We had a much smaller crowd today then we normally do for family storytime. I think word needs to spread that it’s back after the summer hiatus. But that wasn’t really a bad thing since we were in a smaller room. I don’t know if I was being super slow today but we did not get through all of the things I had planned. We started out great but we got a little fussy toward the end. Made it to the last song before I lost my voice! All in all a win!

That’s all for now! Lapsit on Monday!