Baby Story Time – July 28, 2015

Story times with a new crowd in a new neighborhood are always exciting.

A mother came up to me after the program to say that she was new to story times and had attended a program at a different library where the facilitator ran through the material quickly and without any repetition.  She felt lost and a bit embarrassed –  it felt like she was the only person in the room who didn’t know the words to every song. I always try to repeat the material in my story times because I understand the developmental importance of repetition. The patron really appreciated getting a chance to practice new material, and it was a good reminder for me to not race through my programs!

Here’s what we did:

Hello Song: Hello, Friends!

Songs/Tickles:

  • Slowly slowly
  • Wake up feet
  • Head and shoulders
  • Roly poly

Book : I Went Walking / Sue Williams

walking

Bounces:

  • Here we go a bouncing
  • A hippopotamus got on a city bus
  • Giddyup horsey

Book 2: Jump! / Scott Fischer

Jump

Movement Songs:

  • Dancing with bears
  • Zoom zoom
  • Elevator song

Soothing Songs:

  • Orca whale

Baby Story Time – July 10, 2015

What we did:

Hello Song: Hello, Friends!

Tickles/Songs:

  • Two little eyes
  • Head and shoulders
  • Roly poly
  • Wake up feet

Book 1: I Went Walking / Sue Williams

walking

Bounces:

  • A bouncing we will go
  • A hippopotamus got on a city bus
  • Hostile baby rocking song
  • I wish I were a little bar of soap

Book Two: I Spy on the Farm / Edward Gibbs

i spy

Movement Songs:

  • Dancing with bears
  • London Bridge
  • Zoom zoom
  • Elevator song

Soothing songs:

  • I love you
  • Orca whale
  • Rain is falling down

Goodbye song: Goodbye friends!

Our baby time was crazier today than our family story time! We had a lot of babies who will soon be moving into family time, so they were very, very active, and loved our bounces and movement songs.

I also shortened both of the stories, because my wiggly audience just wasn’t having any of it, and it’s a great opportunity to talk to caregivers about adapting stories at home to suit how kids are feeling.

So great to be back into the swing of things!

Family Story Time – May 16, 2015

Remember what I was saying about variety being the norm for a children’s librarian?

I arrived for my on-call shift at the children’s department of the central branch to discover that I was scheduled to deliver the morning’s family story time. Surprise! Thankfully I am a bit of an old hat at last minute story times by now.

One of the nicest things about doing on-call story times is that you can cheat. You can bust out your favourite songs and story books, the really popular ones that everyone loves and that you’ve already done to death with your own group. Today’s family story time was a bit of a greatest hits edition, but no Pete the Cat, as I couldn’t find a copy in the story time closet…

Welcome Song: Hello, Friends

Book 1: I went Walking / Sue Williams

walking

Hand Rhymes

  • I wake up my hands
  • Roly poly

Book 2: Old MacDonald Had a Farm / Jane Cabrera

macdonald

Action Songs

  • Bend and stretch
  • Zoom zoom zoom
  • The wheels on the bus
  • Toast in the toaster
  • The elevator song

Cool Down Songs

  • The itsy bitsy spider
  • Open shut them

Goodbye Song: Goodbye Friends!

I had some very enthusiastic caregivers in today’s small story time group who were happy to belt out all of the songs, which took some of the pressure off my voice, which was still a little strained after the program-heavy day before.

Family Story Time – May 8, 2015

Well, that was interesting….

Yeah!

Today we implemented a new ticketing system to manage the size of our story times, which meant I had the smallest story time I think I’ve ever had – only 50 people (adults and children) in the big meeting room.

It was a bit of an adjustment, to say the least. What had worked with 40 or 50 children didn’t work as well with only about 25.There was so much space in the room that several of the children took to running around, and it was difficult to wrangle them back for our picture books. It was unlike any story time I’ve ever had in this branch, and my original plan simply didn’t stand a chance, so I had to do some last-minute rejigging to try and MacGyver something together.

I only have one session of story times before we take a break until July, so I only have to manage one more crazy story time before I can rethink my story time strategy to reflect the new reality of my set up.

Welcome Song: Hello, Friends

Book 1: The Very Hungry Caterpillar / Eric Carle

Hand Rhymes

  • I wake up my hands
  • Wiggle your fingers
  • The itsy bitsy spider
  • Open-shut them
  • Roly poly

Book 2: I Went Walking / Sue Williams

walking

Action Songs

  • Zoom zoom
  • If you’re happy and you know it
  • Tick tock
  • Elevator song

Cool-down songs:

  • Mm-ah went the little green frog

Goodbye Song: Goodbye, Friends!

Only one more week until we take a much-needed summer break!

Language Fun Story Time – May 7, 2015

walking

Sometimes life throws you curve balls. This morning I arrived at the library to discover that my LFST kit hadn’t arrived! No books, no toys, no felt stories, no program. Yikes!

I plunged into the children’s librarian’s closet and rummaged around until I found something I could turn into a make shit program – a copy of I Went Walking with a corresponding felt story. We still didn’t have toys, or copies of the book to take home, but at least we had a program!

My SLP partner tracked down some toy animals, another copy of the book, and some printable activities to send home with the children.

toys

We sang a rousing few verses of Old MacDonald Had a Farm featuring the different animals in the book before sharing the picture book together as a group. For our main activity each child was able to choose a toy animal, then describe it to the rest of the group, using descriptive vocabulary to talk about the animal’s colour and size, as well as giving an example of its noise.

Although we weren’t able to send the kids home with a board book version of I Went Walking, we were able to give them a template for making their own version of the story. Children could colour in the different animals and put them together in whatever order they liked to retell the story. In the end, the children got a bit of a special program, and were still able to take something home with them.

The moral of the story – expect the unexpected!

worksheets

Baby Story Time – April 24, 2015

Welcome Song: Hello, Friends!

Touching Rhymes/Tickles

  • Well hello everyone, can you touch your nose?
  • 1 little, 2 little, 3 little fingers
  • Slowly slowly very slowly
  • Pizza pickle pumpernickel
  • Roly poly

Book 1: Dear Zoo / Rod Campbell

dear zoo

Songs/Bounces

  • Giddyup giddyup giddyup horsey
  • Trot trot to Boston
  • You be the lemon
  • A hippopotamus got on a city bus

Book Two: I went walking /  Sue Williams

walking

Movement Songs

  • London bridge is falling down
  • Up up up in the sky like this
  • Zoom zoom
  • The elevator song

Soothing Songs

  • Come under my umbrella

Goodbye song: Goodbye, Friends!

I Went Walking is very similar to Brown Bear, Brown Bear, so it’s great for babies and toddlers. It can work very well as a call-and-response activity, where the audiences asks the reader, “what did you see?”

I try to include a little bit of sign language in my story times (both my hello and goodbye songs have signs), and Come under my umbrella introduces a few new signs. When it comes to signing, I’m less interested in teaching pre-verbal babies to communicate than I am in introducing and promoting diversity. We often think of diversity in terms of ethnicity, religion, gender or sexual identity, but diversity includes different abilities and means of communication as well. Some of us speak with our mouths, but others of us speak with our hands, or with a computer, but we all have a special voice worth sharing! Hopefully, by introducing children to the diversity of the human race at a young age, we can help them learn to understand and celebrate the differences that make us all so wonderful!