Friday, December 12, 2014

We Explore Nature: Animals in Winter

  • Program Goals
    • Learn about animals in winter
    • Offer a non-holiday winter program
    • Encourage kids to go outside and explore
    • Develop early literacy skills
    • Attendance: 20
  • Evaluation
    • 12-12-14
      • Attendance: 10
      • Feedback/Connections
      • Notes: After this year, We Explore Nature will be once a month for no 4K day, so it will be directed at a slightly older audience. I also don't usually do these in December and there was a huge program in the community room, so not an auspicious occasion.
Project 1: Animal Collage (10-10:15)
Kids cut out and glue animal pictures to paper. Encourage parents to write what the kids think the animals do in winter.

Supplies
  • Magazines, paper
  • scissors, glue
Storytime/Snacktime: 10:15-10:40
Collect everyone with the Storytime Song, ask parents to pass out snack. Many of these books are more conversations with the younger kids - we talk about each animal and what they do in winter.

Books
  • Waiting for winter by Sebastian Meschenmoscher
  • Bear dreams by Elisha Cooper
  • North by Nick Dowson
  • Over and under the snow by Kate Messner
  • Time to sleep by Denise Fleming
  • Very Hairy Bear by Alice Schertle
  • Under the snow by Melissa Stewart
  • Who would like a Christmas Tree by Ellen Obed

Vocabulary
  • Migration
  • Hibernation
  • Winter
  • Seasons
  • Animals (bears, salamanders, skunks, caribou, etc.)
Snack
  • Animal crackers
  • dixie cups, napkins
Project 2: Animals winter camouflage/Puppet time (10:40-11)
I had paper with a slit pre-cut in it. The kids decorated die cut animals, taped them to popsicle sticks, and had them "hide" in the paper. I also opened up the puppet theater for them to play.

Supplies
  • White paper (pre-cut)
  • Die cuts
  • Popsicle sticks, markers, tape

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Messy Art Club: Mini Art

Some kids got very into the shells

  • Program Goals
    • Offer an inexpensive way for kids to make gifts
    • Encourage creativity and different art styles
    • 35 in attendance
  • Evaluation
    • 11-20-14
      • Attendance: 39
      • Connections/Feedback: A new family - and a brand new baby! I also had a bunch of teens at the end who were very happy to make lots of frames for the nursing home.
      • Notes: It felt like not as many people - I always forget that these decorative programs people tend to leave much more quickly. 
I had a lot of mini picture frames and small blocks that a patron donated - I still have enough for next year!

Supplies
  • Picture frames, small artist blocks (I think that's what they're called?) donated by a patron
  • Glitter glue
  • Decorations
  • Acrylic paint, paintbrushes, aprons, paper plates

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

We Explore Favorite Artist Ed Emberley

  • Program Goals:
    • Introduce Ed Emberley and his art
    • Encourage gross and fine motor skills (cutting, gluing, printing)
    • 20 children and adults in attendance
  • Evaluation
    • 11-19-14
      • Attendance: 29
      • Connections/Feedback
      • Notes: The storytime part of this went really well. Next time I should have copies of Big Green Monster available for checkout. Also, let parents know that if they do the thumbprints it will not come off any time soon!
Art Project Part 1: Collage (10-10:15)
I put a name tag at each space and parents write the children's name on "their" space. I had precut shapes and paper to cut up and the kids did cutting and gluing to make pictures. At 10:15ish, I sing the Storytime Song
  • Supplies
    • Precut shapes (circules, triangles, squares)
    • Construction paper (colored) and scraps
    • Cardstock (recycled)
    • Glue, scissors
Storytime/Snacktime: 10:15-10:40
I get all the kids more or less sitting down and ask a parent or two to pass out the snack during the first story. Depending on the age of the kids, we'll talk about different aspects of the art, anything from identifying colors and shapes to asking questions about the author's process and materials. With the Emberleys, it's really hard to figure out which is actually Ed Emberley's art and which is his daughter's. I guess they have a very collaborative process. So I talked about how very different his art styles are and how he works with his family members to create new and different kinds of art.
  • Books
    • Go away big green monster (puppet)
    • The ant and the grasshopper
    • Drummer Hoff
    • Chicken Little
    • Bye-Bye Big Bad Bullybug
    • If you're a monster and you know it (song)
    • Red Hen (flannelboard)
  • Snack
    • animal crackers
    • dixie cups, napkins
Art Project Part 2: Thumbprints/drawing (10:40-11)
I borrowed an idea from my summer associate and told them to just color their fingers with marker and press them to the paper - instant fingerprints! I also encouraged them to draw with markers. They could add to their previous artwork or create new ones.
  • Supplies
    • Markers
    • Paper
    • wet wipes

Monday, November 17, 2014

Take Home Storytime: Let's Guess!

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy message and encourage families to continue early literacy at home
    • Encourage circulation and storytime attendance
    • Reach families who are unable to attend storytime
  • Notes for the future
    • Last used: 11-17-14
Miss storytime? You can practice many of the early literacy concepts we use in storytime at home! Don't forget to sign up for text alerts so you can make it to the next storytime!

Theme: Let's Guess!

Use the five early literacy practices; talking, singing, reading, playing and writing with these books and projects!

TALK about the books you read together. Suggested stories below are great to encourage conversation between you and your child. Give them extra time to respond to questions - children need longer than adults to process information.

Get ready to WRITE by using a popsicle stick to draw patterns on your scratch board.

SING along with Jim Gill on one of his popular cds like The Silly Dance Contest. Listen for actions to perform with your child.

PLAY with your scratchboard - talk about what your child is drawing and how a scratchboard works. You can make your own scratchboard by covering a thick sheet of paper or thin cardboard with colors (marker works best) and then drawing heavily over it in black crayon.

READ some of these interactive stories that encourage guessing games.
Guess again by Mac Barnett
Who's like me? by Nicola Davies
Flappy, Waggy, Wiggly by Amanda Leslie
Guess who? by Guido van Genechten
I Spy (series) by Edward Gibbs
Who has this tail? by Laura Hulbert
Do you know which ones will grow by Susan Shea

For more library events, new books, and more, check out our website at www.elkhorn.lib.wi.us, join us on Facebook, or talk to a librarian. Please let me know if you have suggestions or questions!

Jennifer Wharton, Youth Services Librarian
jwharton@elkhorn.lib.wi.us, 262-723-2678 ext. 14

Friday, October 24, 2014

Are you ready for....the long haul? Wimpy Kid Party

  • Program Goals
    • Offer a program on a no-school day
    • Bring school-age kids into the library
    • Market collections (Wimpy Kid read-alikes)
    • Build a backlog of book/character parties for use on Friday afternoons
    • Attendance: 35
  • Evaluation
    • 10-24-14
      • Attendance: 20
      • Connections/Feedback: A lot of younger kids. Attendance on no-school days is really spotty, so this wasn't an unexpected number and not that bad considering. Everyone had a lot of fun and tried everything. I'm going to use some of the fill-in quizzes and the add to a comic project for a display next month.
      • Notes: Life happened and I didn't plan this until the last minute. I've also (true confession) never actually read the books. I'm more of a Big Nate fan. Next time I'll get stronger toilet paper because I realized I didn't need as much. I decided to add the movie at the last minute and that was good because it took the kids a long time to warm up and get moving.
Stations and Activities
  • Create your own diary
    • 8x5 white construction paper
    • Construction paper
    • Handmade paper (leftover)
    • Markers, scissors
  • Cheese Whiz Quiz
  • Manny Cereal Toss
    • I got this from Tiny Tips but I had the kids make their own cereal boxes
    • Construction paper, scissors, tape, markers
    • Toilet seat and recycling basket
    • Masking tape (for the floor)
  • Long Haul Games
    • I printed out word games etc. from previous event kits and suggested kids come up with their own car games that Greg might play.
  • Toilet Paper Wrap Race
    • I got this from a program on the ALSC blog.
  • The Big Screen and munchies
    • I had Dog Days playing just for extra noise and I put cookies out and a small circle of chairs
  • The World's Longest Comic
    • I came up with this myself. Hold the applause please. I had my aide draw a really, really simple comic on a long strip of paper and taped it to the wall, then invited kids to continue the story.
    • Paper, pencils, scissors
  • Book Display
    • I pulled a few books from everything BUT Wimpy Kid - a sample
      • Big Nate
      • Dork Diaries
      • Ellie McDoodle
      • Stick Dog
      • Dragonbreath
      • Bean Boy
      • Amelia Rules
      • Babymouse

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

We Explore Nature: Fall

  • Program Goals: 
    • Learn about seasonal things (animals, leaves, migration, etc.)
    • Offer program on no 4K day
    • Encourage children to go outside and explore
    • Develop early literacy skills
    • 20 parents and children in attendance
  • Evaluation
    • 10-15-14
      • Attendance: 17
      • Connections/Feedback: One little boy, at the end of storytime, suddenly popped out with one of our vocabulary words "migration" which was awesome.
      • Notes: I did not prep in time and did not have Secret Life of the Woolly Bear Caterpillar so I just showed a picture and we talked about how some caterpillars sleep in the winter, like bears.
Project 1: Creating woolly bear caterpillars, squirrel ears, and flying geese puppets (10-10:15)
Kids label their space with a nametag.
  • Caterpillars - glue pompoms to tongue depressors
  • Squirrels - staple triangles to strips of paper, staple into crowns, color
  • Geese - glue to tongue depressor, color
Supplies
  • pompoms
  • strips and triangles of paper
  • geese (free coloring page here)
  • stapler, glue dots, crayons, scissors
  • file labels (name tags)
Storytime/Snacktime: 10:15-10:40
Collect everyone with the Storytime Song, ask parents to pass out snack.
  • Books
    • Nuts to you by Lois Ehlert
    • Tap the magic tree by Christie Matheson
    • Rainy, Sunny, Blowy, Snowy what are seasons by Jane Brocket
    • Every autumn comes the bear by Jim Arnosky
    • Leaf man by Lois Ehlert
    • Secret Life of the Woolly Bear Caterpillar by Lawrence Pringle
    • Awesome Autumn by Bruce Goldstone
    • Honk Honk Goose by April Sayre
    • Kitten's Autumn by Eugenie Fernandes
  • Flannelboard/Movement
  • Vocabulary
    • Migration
    • Hibernation
    • Fall & Autumn
    • Seasons
    • Colors (red, orange, brown, yellow, green)
  • Snack
    • Apples, pretzels
    • napkins, plastic cups
Project 2: Leaf Colors (10:40-11)
I gave out leaves and fingerpaint and encouraged the kids to paint the leaves, paint their own leaves, etc.
  • Supplies
    • real leaves, die cut leaves
    • 9x12 white construction paper
    • fingerpaint
    • paper plates, paper towels, aprons
Our vocabulary words on the chalkboard

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Take Home Storytime: We Are the Dinosaurs


  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy message and encourage families to continue early literacy at home
    • Encourage circulation and storytime attendance
    • Reach families who are unable to attend storytime
  • Notes for the future
    • Last used: 10-14-14
Miss storytime? You can practice many of the early literacy concepts we use in storytime at home! Don't forget to sign up for text alerts so you can make it to the next storytime!

Theme: We are the dinosaurs!

Use the five early literacy practices; talking, singing, reading, playing and writing with these books and projects!

TALK about dinosaurs. You can find books about dinosaurs in the new animals section in the picture books, or in the juvenile nonfiction (back towards the family bathroom) under 567.9

Get ready to WRITE by drawing! You can use markers or crayons to decorate your dinosaur

SING along with Laurie Berkner to "We are the Dinosaurs" online or on her cd Whaddya Think of That?

PLAY with your dinosaur! After you have decorated it, make up some stories - what is the dinosaur doing? What does he say? Does he just roar or can he talk?

READ some of these stories about dinosaurs

When dinosaurs came with everything by Elise Broach
Inside-Outside Dinosaurs by Roxie Munro
I'm Big by Kate McMullan
Dinosaur Vs. Bedtime by Bob Shea

For more library events, new books, and more, check out our website at www.elkhorn.lib.wi.us, join us on Facebook, or talk to a librarian. Please let me know if you have suggestions or questions!

Jennifer Wharton, Youth Services Librarian
jwharton@elkhorn.lib.wi.us, 262-723-2678 ext. 14

Friday, September 26, 2014

We Explore Nature: Birds

  • Program Goals: 
    • Learn about birds
    • Encourage use of library birdwatching station
    • Encourage children to go outside and explore
    • Develop early literacy skills
    • 20 parents and children in attendance
  • Attendance: 17
  • Connections/Feedback: I haven't reached the attendance goal, but this was an awesome group, new people, the kids enjoyed it, and we all learned what "oviparous" means!
  • Notes for the future: 
    • 9-26-14: I am always torn between doing younger activities/stories because I have toddlers, or sticking to the original idea which is that I'm creating these primarily to use in outreach and just testing them here. I ended up planning this the day before so wasn't able to request a lot of the books I wanted (checked out) and also didn't have time to finish the Little Bird flannel board I wanted to use.
Project 1: Creating bird puppets and bird flocks (10-10:15)
Kids label their space with a nametag, and decorate the birds and tape them to their popsicle sticks. They also decorate the birds, tape them to ribbons, tape the ribbons to a popsicle stick, to create a "flock" of birds that fly when they run with the streamer.
  • Supplies
    • file labels (name tags)
    • Die cut bird shapes
    • Popsicle sticks
    • Ribbon, feathers
    • Tape, markers, crayons
Storytime/Snacktime: 10:15-10:40
Collect everyone with the Storytime Song, ask parents to pass out snack while we read a story. Lots of discussion of birds' habits and different kinds of birds
  • Books
    • A Bird's Life by Ellen Lawrence
    • The Long, Long journey by Sandra Markle
    • Mama built a little nest by Jennifer Ward
    • About birds by Cathryn Sill
    • Nest by Jorey Hurley
    • Froodle by Antoinette Portis
  • Flannelboard/Movement
  • Snack
    • pretzels, apples
    • napkins
Project 2: Wings (10:40-11)
I have precut cardboard wings that I use for butterfly programs (so they're not really the right shape for birds) but we made our own wings anyways. With a really large group I'd probably change this out for something else - making nests out of yarn or something.
  • Supplies
    • Cardboard wings
    • Decorations (used tubs of collage items from previous program)
    • Glue, tape, markers, crayons
More Bird Books
  • *Feathers: Not just for flying by Melissa Stewart
  • Look up! Bird-watching in your own backyard by Annette LeBlanc Cate
  • *Have you heard the nesting bird by Rita Gray
  • *I Spy in the sky by Edward Gibbs
  • Early bird by Toni Yuly
  • Alex the Parrot by Stephanie Spinner
  • Noodle and Lou by Elizabeth Scanlon
  • Elsie's bird by Jane Yolen
  • South by Patrick McDonnell
  • How to heal a broken wing by Bob Graham
  • How to paint the portrait of a bird by Jacques Prevert
  • Grumpy bird by Jeremy Tankard
  • The baby beebee bird by Diane Massie
  • Backyard birds of winter by Carol Lerner
  • Birds, nests and eggs by Mel Boring
  • Marsh morning by Marianne Berkes
  • Puffling patrol by Ted and Betsy Lewin
  • Pale male by Janet Schulman
  • Roly-poly egg by Kali Stileman
  • About hummingbirds by Cathryn Sill
  • Woodpecker by Dee Phillips
  • Spotted owl by Dee Phillips
*Would have used in storytime but were checked out

Friday, September 12, 2014

We Explore Favorite Artist Lois Ehlert

  • Program Goals:
    • Introduce Lois Ehlert and her art
    • Practice motor development (cutting, gluing), using rulers and scissors
    • 20 children and adults in attendance
  • Attendance: 17
  • Connections/Feedback: Lots of positive comments about how much they enjoyed the program. Two caregivers weren't familiar with Ehlert and checked out a lot of her books. I reconnected with a homeschool family that is going to start attending programs again and talked to two families about having programs a little later in the morning so 4K children could attend.
  • Notes for the future: 12 people came to the program itself, two families went to get their four year olds at school afterwards and came back, and one family came afterwards.
Art Project Part 1: Cutting (10-10:15)
Parents label the child's space with a name tag and then I encourage them to cut out lots of different shapes. I also had several matching games with our new magnetic chalkboard for the kids to try out if they got bored cutting. At 10:15ish, I sing the Storytime Song
Storytime/Snacktime: 10:15-10:40
I get all the kids more or less sitting down and ask a parent or two to pass out the snack during the first story. Depending on the age of the kids, we'll talk about different aspects of the art, anything from identifying colors and shapes to asking questions about the author's process and materials.
  • Books
    • Planting a Rainbow (big book) (talk about colors)
    • RRRalph (talk about found objects in collage)
    • Fish Eyes (talk about counting)
    • Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (sing, talk about letters)
    • Oodles of animals (talk about shapes)
  • Snack
    • Apples and sweet peppers
    • Napkins
Art Project Part 2: Collage (10:40-11)
I asked the parents to help me distribute the rest of the materials needed for creating the collages. The kids used the shapes they'd cut and the found objects (one tub for each table) to create pictures.
  • Supplies
    • Found objects (yarn, buttons, seeds, etc.)
    • Glue, white construction paper

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Fall Festival

Fishing for prizes
  • Program Goals: 
    • Distribute information about fall programs
    • Connect with new and returning families
    • Mark beginning of fall programming
  • Attendance: 50
  • Connections/Feedback: Passed out lots of calendars, signed up several new kids for 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten, invited several new people to after school clubs
  • Notes for the future:
    • 9-6-14: This was actually going to be a community baby shower, but we ran out of time to get it set up. So I did a little fall festival instead. I had no money, so had to do this with what I had on hand. I planned to start setting up at 9:30, program 10:30-11:30, clean-up, done by 12. I went home at 1:30. People were having fun and didn't want to leave and I had to finish some other stuff. The fishing for prizes was popular, nobody really did the Mad Scientists Challenge, and only some did the Messy Art. It was mostly little kids who preferred Pattie's crafts with lots of stickers and stuff. The Survey did not work well - computer issues - but a couple people did it.
Ms. Pattie
  • I gave Pattie two tables for whatever information/activities she wanted to do to promote her fall programs at the library and in the community.
Library Information
  • I kept one table for flyers, newsletters, and information about fall library programs and the library in general. I also set up the laptop here for people to take the survey.
  • Supplies
    • Newsletter, calendar
    • Text alerts
    • Wisconsin digital library
    • After school club bookmarks
    • 1,000 books before kindergarten
Lego Club Challenge
  • The challenge had two tiers - "Basic beginner" was a challenge to build a tower, "Master Builder" was to create something with a fall theme. When the kids complete it, they come and get a lego Club membership card.
  • Supplies
    • A big tub of legos
Messy Art Club Challenge
  • The challenge was to create a fall-themed piece of art. I suggested leaf streamers.
  • Supplies
    • Die cut leaves, ribbon
    • markers
    • tape, popsicle sticks, scissors
Mad Scientists Club
  • Engineering challenge - The challenge was to create a structure out of pencils that either moved or could bear weight with ONLY those materials provided.
  • Supplies
    • thousands of pencils (left over from donation)
    • rubber bands, yarn, glue dots
Prize Fishing
  • I filled a swimming pool with colored shredded paper and then threw in a whole bunch of Halloween plastic rings I had left over and some of those shaped rubber band bracelets. Then I had paper clips and told the kids to make a fishing rod (using materials from the other stations) and they could "fish" for a prize.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Preschool Interactive: A whale of a tale

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy messages
    • Learn about whales
    • Practice motor development with painting
    • 25 children and adults in attendance
  • Attendance: 15
  • Connections/Feedback:
  • Notes for the future:
    • 8-6-14: This is the last Preschool Interactive. Starting in the fall, I will be doing an irregular schedule of We Explore programs and more outreach instead.
Books
  • Following papa's song by Gianna Marino
  • Hello, Baby Beluga by Darrin Lunde
  • The Long, Long Line by Tomoko Ohmura
  • North: the amazing story of Arctic migration by Nick Dowson
Flannelboard/Movement/Music
  • Fruit Salad Salsa by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito (opening with shakers)
  • The More We Get Together (names)
  • I'm The Biggest thing in the ocean by Kevin Sherry (flannelboard)
Early Literacy Aside

Project: Painting
  • Supplies
    • Fingerpaint, big popsicle sticks, paper plates, paper, aprons

Take Home Storytime: A Whale of a Tale



  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy message and encourage families to continue early literacy at home
    • Encourage circulation and storytime attendance
    • Reach families who are unable to attend storytime
  • Notes for the future
    • Last used: 8-6-14
Miss storytime? You can practice many of the early literacy concepts we use in storytime at home! Don't forget to sign up for text alerts so you can make it to the next storytime!

Theme: A Whale of a Tale!

Use the five early literacy practices; talking, singing, reading, playing and writing with these books and projects!

TALK about an animal. You can look for books about specific animals in the juvenile nonfiction in the 590s.

Get ready to WRITE by painting! You can use washable fingerpaint outside for a fun, mess-free art project.

SING along with Laurie Berkner on one of her popular cds, including Victor Vito.

PLAY with your whale puppet! Decorate your whale and tape it to a popsicle stick to make a puppet.

READ some of these stories about whales
  • Following papa's song by Gianna Marino
  • Hello, Baby Beluga by Darrin Lunde
  • The Long, Long Line by Tomoko Ohmura
  • North: the amazing story of Arctic migration by Nick Dowson
For more library events, new books, and more, check out our website at www.elkhorn.lib.wi.us, join us on Facebook, or talk to a librarian. Please let me know if you have suggestions or questions!

Jennifer Wharton, Youth Services Librarian
jwharton@elkhorn.lib.wi.us, 262-723-2678 ext. 14

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Messy Art Club: Sand Art

  • Program Goals
    • Younger kids - encourage motor development (pouring and stirring), create patterns
    • All ages - encourage creativity and experiment with different art techniques and supplies
    • Provide a flexible program open to all ages and skill levels
    • 40 children and adults in attendance
  • Attendance: 58
  • Connections/Feedback: Talked to parents about making art with kids - it's ok for them to make something too!
  • Notes for the future
    • 7-31-14: Small tubs of sand are perfect - a few left over and enough for everybody.
    • 9-26-13: Used leftover colored sand and shells. Kids really like to just mix it all up, so it's not worth buying the sand in bulk.
Project: Sand Art (with shells)

Supplies
  • Sand, shells
  • Thick paper - recycled cardstock and/or construction paper, paper plates, pencils
  • Plastic tubs, spoons (dixie cups b/c someone took a bunch of my spoons)
  • Glue sticks, glue

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Take Home Storytime: Let's Swim

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy message and encourage families to continue early literacy at home
    • Encourage circulation and storytime attendance
    • Reach families who are unable to attend storytime
  • Notes for the future
    • Bag contains two cardboard boat die cuts
    • Last used: 7-30-14
Miss storytime? You can practice many of the early literacy concepts we use in storytime at home! Don't forget to sign up for text alerts so you can make it to the next storytime!

Theme: Let's Swim!

Use the five early literacy practices; talking, singing, reading, playing and writing with these books and projects!

TALK about how different animals swim

Get ready to WRITE by developing your motor skills with lacing. All you need is a piece of cardboard with some holes and yarn or string. If the yarn frays, wrap a little tape around the end to make it easier to poke through the holes.

SING along with Laurie Berkner on one of her popular cds, including Victor Vito.

PLAY with your boat! Decorate it and make up a story to go with it.

READ some of these stories about swimming
  • Sergio makes a splash by Edel Rodriguez
  • See what a seal can do by Christine Butterworth
  • The most obedient dog in the world by Anita Jeram
  • Sink or swim by Valerie Coulman
  • About crustaceans by Cathryn Sill
For more library events, new books, and more, check out our website at www.elkhorn.lib.wi.us, join us on Facebook, or talk to a librarian. Please let me know if you have suggestions or questions!

Jennifer Wharton, Youth Services Librarian
jwharton@elkhorn.lib.wi.us, 262-723-2678 ext. 14

Preschool Interactive: Let's Swim

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy messages
    • Encourage children to note differences in similar pictures
    • Encourage motor development with lacing
    • 25 children and adults in attendance
  • Attendance: 19 with a couple wandering in afterwards. Only 6 kids actually sat through storytime.
  • Connections/Feedback
  • Notes for the future: I always forgot how much time interactive stories/games like the Crustaceans flannelboard takes. We only read two other stories.
Books
  • Sergio makes a splash by Edel Rodriguez
  • See what a seal can do by Christine Butterworth
  • The most obedient dog in the world by Anita Jeram
  • Sink or swim by Valerie Coulman
Flannelboard/Movement/Music
Early Literacy Aside
  • Repeated phrases (Most Obedient Dog)
  • Identify differences (Crustaceans)
Project: Lace and sew (MaryAnn Kohl's Preschool Art pg 52)
  • Supplies
    • precut shapes out of shirt cardboard with some holes punched in them
    • yarn, tape, hole punches, crayons, scissors
  • Kids use tape to stiffen the yarn and lace it through the holes.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Take Home Storytime: Grow, Grow, Food!

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy message and encourage families to continue early literacy at home
    • Encourage circulation and storytime attendance
    • Reach families who are unable to attend storytime
  • Notes for the future
    • Bag contains leftover Elephant and Piggie cut-outs, random shapes
    • Last used: 7-23-14
Miss storytime? You can practice many of the early literacy concepts we use in storytime at home! Don't forget to sign up for text alerts so you can make it to the next storytime!

Theme: Grow, Grow, Food!

Use the five early literacy practices; talking, singing, reading, playing and writing with these books and projects!

TALK about how plants grow

Get ready to WRITE by developing your motor skills - try stringing beads and buttons on pipe cleaners

SING along with Laurie Berkner on one of her popular cds, including Victor Vito.

PLAY with your paper bag puppet
  • Turn your paper bag into a puppet by using the paper scraps, as is or cut into different shapes, to decorate it

READ some of these stories about food and the plants it comes from
  • Tea party rules by Ame Dyckman
  • Plants feed me by Lizzy Rockwell
  • Mmm...let's eat! by Libby Koponen
  • Lunch by Denise Fleming
For more library events, new books, and more, check out our website at www.elkhorn.lib.wi.us, join us on Facebook, or talk to a librarian. Please let me know if you have suggestions or questions!

Jennifer Wharton, Youth Services Librarian
jwharton@elkhorn.lib.wi.us, 262-723-2678 ext. 14

Preschool Interactive: Yum, Yum, Food!

  • Program Goals
    • Pass on early literacy messages
    • Give children an opportunity for motor development (stringing beads)
    • Learn about plants and growing things
    • Promote pizza gardens program
    • 25 children and adults in attendance
  • Attendance: 18 + 7ish that wandered in afterwards to do the project
  • Connections/Feedback: Several kids said they really liked the flannelboard retelling of Lunch. Also had a visiting patron from Eau Claire (came with regular attendee) who said how much they enjoyed the small group and that the kids all got to participate. Connected the plants in Plants feed me to things growing in the pizza gardens.
  • Notes for the future: Forgot the marker for the garden game, but a mom handed out the pieces while I went to get it.
Books
  • Tea party rules by Ame Dyckman
  • Plants feed me by Lizzy Rockwell
  • Mmm...let's eat! by Libby Koponen
Flannelboard/Movement/Music
  • Fruit Salad Salsa by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito (opening with shakers)
  • The More We Get Together (names)
  • Garden vs. Not Garden
  • Lunch by Denise Fleming (flannelboard)
Early Literacy Aside
  • We're going to practice two sets of vocabulary today - colors and names of vegetables
Project: Beads
  • Supplies
    • Beads, buttons, pipe cleaners
  • Kids string the beads and buttons on the pipe cleaners.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Preschool Interactive: Guess!


  • 7-16-14: I wasn't sure if I was going to regret not having any movement, but with all the lift the flap and I spy book I figured we wouldn't need it - and I could always throw in something if needed. I had a lot of older kids and they were all very into the guessing so it worked out fine. I didn't use Flappy though. 

    • Dancing time and name tags: "Fruit Salad Salsa" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Messy Art Club, We Explore Science

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: Guess again by Mac Barnett

      Early Literacy Aside: Talking and reading together is the best way to build your child's vocabulary. There are more books in this series that encourage conversation. If you enjoy this story, check out the others!

      Nonfiction: Who's Like Me? by Nicola Davies

      Short story: Flappy, waggy wiggly by Amanda Leslie

      Short story: I spy pets/I spy farm by Edward Gibbs

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Lift the flap collage

      Prep: Old magazines, paper, shapes, scissors, markers, tape, staples

      Kids cut and tape pictures, then tape a flap over the pictures. They can staple pages together to make a book.


      Friday, July 11, 2014

      We Explore Puppets

      • 7-11-14: I forgot I was doing an afternoon program today and scheduled this in the morning. I also forgot it was senior travel - no parking! This is the last playgroup I'll do for a while. I enjoy these and they have a nice, steady attendance but I'm cutting back on programs and my director would like me to do more specifically planned things. So, last one. About 25 people came, everyone had a good time. Bye-bye puppets!
      • 1-24-13: I've decided this is a good fall-back play group that we can do every couple months. About 20 people show up and it's very casual. I don't stay in the room, just kind of wander in and out and chat with parents, help people find books, suggest upcoming programs, etc.
      • 7-26-13: It was raining and quite a few people showed up - over 20. We had lots of fun and it was a nice, casual play time. I also told a lot of people about our circulating toys, so they could take puppets home with them. I decided to make my summer we explores much more casual, drop-in type events. I'm planning the school year ones to be more performer/outside programmer oriented. I simply have too much to do to handle such an involved program and we weren't getting the numbers to justify the time.
      For this program I opened up the Storyroom puppet theater and brought out all the puppets. I also had materials available for the kids to make their own puppets.

      Supplies
      • Die cut shapes
      • Popsicle sticks
      • Tape, markers, crayons

      Friday, June 27, 2014

      We Explore Boats

      • 6-27-14: This is the first of my last two We Explore playgroups. I'm cutting back on programs and these are fun, but not necessary. I cut way down on the amount of things we had to make boats out of, didn't try to do the folding paper boats (which didn't work) and everything was outside, since we had a senior movie being shown in the Storyroom.
      • 6-14-13: I didn't finish planning this until right before we did it, so it ended up being kind of haphazard. Basically I put out a bunch of books, a bunch of supplies, and was hoping that people would make boats, decorate them, and take them outside to float. Then they could figure out which ones floated better and try different designs. 35 people came and everyone loved it, but some samples would have been better. The best were the plates the kids covered in foil and then taped on popsicle stick masts and sails.
      Supplies
      • 3 plastic kiddie pools filled with water
      • styrofoam plates, popsicle sticks, cardstock (scratch paper), duct tape, scissors
      • bubbles, sidewalk chalk

      Thursday, June 26, 2014

      Mad Scientists Club: Reptile Science

      • 6-26-14: I got the ideas for this from a class I took at the Milwaukee Zoo. It didn't really "gel" in my head, so I wasn't sure how it would turn out. However, it went really well. 80+ people showed up. One of the middle schoolers attending knew how to make little geckos out of beads and showed a lot of the kids (and moms) how to do it, and I had another middle school volunteer who helped things run smoothly. One of my aides ran the outdoor portion. A couple kids came up with the idea to "sew" their plates together with pipe cleaners.
      Project: Build a Reptile
      • Beads, pipe cleaners
      Experiment: Am I a tortoise or a turtle?
      • pools (outside weather permitting) filled with water
      • Make turtles and tortoises -test them in the water
      • Supplies
        • Styrofoam plates
        • Popsicle sticks
        • Cardstock (scrap paper)
        • glass beads (weight)
        • Scissors, packing tape, duct tape
        • Permanent markers
      • Poster - turtles vs. tortoises, whiteboard to add more facts

      Wednesday, June 25, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Let's Get Wet!

      • 6-26-14: I cancelled last week's storytime because of the big outreach program, so I wasn't sure what attendance would be like this week. I'm seriously thinking about cancelling this program in the fall and concentrating on outreach - I can reach a lot more preschoolers that way. Looking back at 2012...I can't remember the last time I had 30+ people in this storytime. I had about 25, but at least half of them would normally be in school.
      • 7-18-12: It was a really crazy day. I had lots of new people which is good. It's funny, the room is full, more than full and yet 36 doesn't seem like a large number. Although about 24 of those were kids.
      Dancing time and name tags: "Fruit Salad Salsa" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Summer reading, Mad Scientists Club tomorrow

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: Squid and Octopus friends for always by Tao Nyeu

      Movement/Flannelboard: Five little seashells
      (I have a LOT of shells, so for the last line of this rhyme, the last time we repeated it, I gave all the kids a shell)

      Early Literacy Aside: Our next book is full of poems about the sea. We're going to read some of these poems and listen to the sounds of the words, especially the way they rhyme. Rhymes help develop phonological awareness.

      Nonfiction: In the sea by David Elliott

      Movement/Flannelboard: Animals in the ocean

      Short story: Seven little mice go to the beach by Haruo Yamashita

      Short story: Duck dunks by Lynne Berry

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Finger paint

      Prep: Aprons, fingerpaint, paper, paper towels

      Kids paint

      Take Home Insert

      Tuesday, June 17, 2014

      Angry Birds party

      • 6-17-14: I changed a few things this year - I took out the cookies and making pompoms and added catapults. The big draw is really the game, so we stuck with that. I had about 60 people attend and it was crazy. Fun, but crazy. I don't think I can handle this another year - some of my staff weren't available and I didn't have the volunteers and it was just exhausting. The fact that I didn't get anything to eat this day might have factored in as well...so, good but needs preparation and staff. And I forgot the window decals AGAIN.
      • 6-18-13: Last year's Star Wars party was a bit of a fiasco (ok, a huge disaster) and I was trying to find ways to improve it when I started seeing excellent suggestions for Angry Birds. This sounded much easier. This whole program was a conglomerate of all the different ideas I collected from other librarians here. Approximately 75 people signed up and I closed registration on Monday. 68 people actually showed up and about 50 of those had registered, so it was good. We somehow ended up with an insane amount of frosting, so I need to remember to tell the store we only need 2 tubs, not 6!! next year and we had cookies left over, but we're doing a birthday program next week, so we stuck them in the freezer. Not many people made pompoms, but several people filled their pigs with them to take home. Meh. The balloons were a huge hit and everyone loved the game. I couldn't have done it without two girls who showed up to volunteer and one of my aides staying late to clean up. People usually leave these things around the 45 minute mark, but we were still going strong at 3:00!
      Project: Plastic Bottle Piggies
      • Kids decorated plastic bottles (the necks are the snouts).
      • Supplies
        • Plastic bottles
        • Paper, foam, wiggly eyes
        • Glue dots, markers, scissors, tape
      Project: Catapults
      • I borrowed this from our first Mad Scientists Club
      • Kids make catapults and use them to launch cotton balls into the air
      • Supplies
        • popsicle sticks, plastic spoons, rubber bands
        • glue dots, tape (packing tape, duct tape)
        • bottle caps, cotton balls
      Game: Backwards Angry Birds
      • The Rules
      • Supplies
        • Balloons, sharpies
        • Lots of recycled boxes and tubes
        • pig puppet
      Other
      • Book table

      Wednesday, June 11, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Ocean

      • 6-11-14: First preschool storytime back this summer. It was pouring rain. I forgot to write out the words for Five little Seashells so we didn't use it, but I didn't need it anyways, especially since I added a flannelboard component to Animals in the Ocean at the last minute. I had 5 kids actually listening but a lot of others wandering in and out. [replaced Old Robert and the sea-silly cats by Barbara Joosse]
      • 9-26-12: Ocean Sunlight turned out to be a little long, but almost 10 kids stayed in the room for it, and I shortened it a little at the end. With so many younger kids drifting in and out, and especially since I TELL people they can take a break and come back for the craft, I have got to get over feeling guilty when they do! One mom told me I needed to be nicer to myself about not remembering names. Thank you very nice mom! Whose, er, name I can't remember. But her daughter is SYDNEY not Bailey. I also cut Nanook, b/c we were all getting wiggly and ready to make art with holes in it!
      Dancing time and name tags: "Fruit Salad Salsa" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito (with shakers)

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Welcome back to storytime! Don't forget to sign up for summer reading at the children's desk with Ms. Emily if you haven't already. Next week there will be no official storytime, instead we will be running a special field trip for Safety Town, the summer school kindergarten program. You are welcome to come and join in with the tours, storytimes, and activities with the kids.

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      In our first story, we're going to listen for rhyming words. Rhyming helps us hear the smaller sounds in words and practice getting ready to read!

      Long story: Circus Ship by Chris van Dusen

      Movement/Flannelboard: Five little seashells

      Nonfiction: Ocean Sunlight by Molly Bang

      Movement/Flannelboard: Animals in the ocean

      Short story: Nanook and Pryce by Ned Crowley

      Short story: I spy under the sea by Edward Gibbs

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Drawing with holes from Playing by the Book

      Prep: Cut various sizes of holes in ledger sized paper. Put out markers and crayons

      Kids draw frames, pictures, etc.

      Take Home Insert

      Tuesday, June 10, 2014

      Very Fairy Flower Party

      • 6-10-14: I could probably have done Ella Bella Ballerina for a few more years (or decades) but I was feeling fairy-ish so I thought a flower fairy party would be fun. Of course, by the weekend before the party only about 10 people had signed up and I was of two minds "nobody is going to come I didn't advertise it enough people are tired of the parties AUGHHHH" or "people will sign up at the last minute or come anyways it's no big deal". So, about 50 people came which was good. It was a little quieter than previous parties, but I am trying to get used to the idea that bigger is NOT always better. Everyone had fun and we took tons of cool pictures. I don't think Flower Fairies is as tied to a book as some previous parties so I'm thinking of something a little different for next year. People didn't really get into the hats, which was a pity, but I had a LOT of options so it didn't really matter. Baking the cupcakes was a huge pain - I've been cutting down on the food in programs steadily and this is one of the last ones to go I think. I don't even LIKE to bake. Next year either someone else will be in charge of food or I'll buy them premade.
      Projects
      • Butterfly Masks
      • Fairy Wings
      • Flower wreaths/crowns and/or necklaces/bracelets
      • Flower hats
      • Flower wands
      Craft Supplies
      • Twisteez wire
      • Pipe cleaners
      • Fabric flowers (they came all stuck together which was a pain)
      • Paper flowers (cardstock, purchased pre-cut decorations)
      • Pre-cut wings from Discount School Supply
      • Die-cut butterfly masks
      • Die cut flowers (large, construction paper and cardboard, with two holes bored using a compass)
      • Popsicle sticks
      • Tissue paper
      • bobby pins
      General Supplies
      • Jewels, sequins, glitter glue
      • Beads
      • Ribbon
      • Washi and masking tape
      • Markers
      • Glue, glue dots, tape
      • Scissors
      Food
      • mini pink cupcakes (2 boxes)
      • pink frosting (2 containers)
      • pink plates, napkins, popsicle sticks
      Other
      • Book tale with Flower Fairy books
      • giant flower pom pom decorations and streamers
      • mini flower fairy decorations

      Tuesday, May 27, 2014

      Summer Reading: 2014 Edition

      This isn't changed much from last year, since that was my Final How It Will Be Forever Amen program line-up. Just a few tweaks here and there.

      Rubber Ducky Readers
      • Ages 0-3
      • June log (receive a bath squirt when they turn it in in July)
      • July log (receive a board book when they turn it in in August)
      • Adapted from Marge Loch-Wouters' Rubber Ducky Club
      • Funded by Kohls cares for kids and United Way
      • I would like to cut down some of the verbiage on the forms and go to the five early literacy skills, but I printed a LOT of these last year, because I had the money, so we'll be using this for the foreseeable future. When I finally use up all the forms, then I can redo them a little. I also bought enough board books last year for a couple years so all I had to add was some more bath squirts, since a lot of kids thought they were regular summer reading prizes. We'll keep them in the cupboard this time.
      Fizz, Boom, Read
      • Ages 3-12
      • Turn in a bookmark each week and receive a prize (This is last year's bookmark - I don't have the form for this year, but it added the week pre-printed so we didn't have to go just by color or write them in)
      • I try for prizes under 50 cents but stuff the kids can actually "do" something with, not just add to their stash of plastic crap. This year I'm making the first week prize a book. I've been wanting to go back to this, since it's the biggest prize week, but I thought it would confuse people because we use to give out books at registration and there isn't normally someone all the time at the YS desk watching. This year there will be though, and I think we're far enough away from the giveaway that it should work.
      • This year I didn't even try for donations - I only got a couple hundred dollars last year and it's not worth it. I used money from the Friends and my supply budget.
      Super Readers Club
      • Ages 6-12
      • Turn in a reading log in August and choose up to 6 passes/prizes (program is supplemental to Fizz, Boom, Read - i.e. you can do both)
      • We had fewer passes this year, so I cut down the challenge from 7 to 6. Right now, I have 5, possibly 6 passes (or I will as soon as I ask McDonald's for ice cream coupons) and I made a coupon for the kids to pick an additional free book in case I ran out of anything.
      Teen Summer Reading
      • Ages 13-18
      • Every week you turn in a review sheet you get to choose a book OR a piece of candy. In late August, all participants will be invited to a party.
      • Middle schoolers can choose which program they want to join - teen or kids. This is the only program with a significant change this year - I got rid of the final drawing prize (which we had problems with last year) and now they can just do one prize a week and then come to the party. With the middle schoolers, we had about 50 kids last year and that's a lot of books and candy right there. I'm also going to keep the candy bin in the cupboard, since people can't seem to grasp that it's not free candy.
      Summer Reading - Daycare Version
      • I started this last year with the small daycare that I visit monthly during the school year. They only have 15 kids and it worked really well. This year I'm expanding it to the main daycare in town which will be around 200 kids! I'm also excited that both schools will be doing library visits, hopefully. These will be visits for them to browse and hang out at the library, not programs that I'm doing and I'm pretty excited about this. The smaller school might even attend some programs!
      • I reworked the log into just one sheet and gave the schools the master copy so they could make as many copies as they wanted.
      • Right now, the plan is for the small school to visit (or have me visit) sometime early in June for storytime and to bring a selection of books. The bigger school will drop by throughout the summer. In August, I will visit the bigger school's younger kids - 3s and 4s - to take ice cream coupons and the older kids will come and pick out prizes. I'm not sure yet how the visit will go for the smaller school, but somehow they will get ice cream!
      I'd like at some point to stop chopping and changing the theme every year and go with something I could do every summer. But for that I have to wait for a really good theme from ILA to come along that I can live with (CSLP only licenses the artwork for the summer, ILA you can reuse it, which I've done for my winter reading program)

      You are welcome to use my materials, but please be aware the the artwork is copyrighted by the CSLP, so if your library does not participate in that program you will need to use different artwork.

      Saturday, May 10, 2014

      Muffins with Mom

      • 5-10-14: I used the same set up as last year. I started the program at 10:30 instead of 10, but there wasn't anybody outside so I didn't lose anyone. About 10 people came through, which wasn't a lot, but I stuck it out until 12:30 to see if we got a big group coming in like last year. A few more people came in, so we ended up with about 25. I think most people were outside.
      • 5-11-13: I saw this program at Hi Miss Julie and thought it sounded like a nice, simple thing to end the spring programming session on. About 25 people came at 10ish when we opened and 5-10 more people drifted in.That's pretty acceptable attendance for a Saturday program, especially at this time of year. [update - more people showed up around 12:30, so we had about 40 in all]
      I set up our storyroom with muffins and other snacks. I also had card supplies. People came, ate muffins and made cards. Super simple!

      Supplies:
      • Muffins and grapes, napkins and dixie cups
      • Scrapbooking paper, construction paper, paper scraps, die cut flowers
      • Scissors, glue, markers, crayons
      This is how I set the room up - I didn't take any other pictures. Small tables for the little kids, big tables for the big kids.



      Wednesday, May 7, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Rain showers, Spring Flowers

      • 5-7-14: Last storytime of the spring. I'll be on "break" until summer programs start on June 7. A small group - 14, but included some new people and some regulars, all of whom are looking forward to returning for the summer. The garden game didn't work as well as it did with my outreach groups, but it was still pretty fun and the kids liked it. I ended without doing the Patterson Puppies because we were at time and because I was getting hoarse from trying to talk over a very happy baby who wanted to sing the whole time!
      Dancing time and name tags: "Silly Dance Contest" by Jim Gill from Sneezing Song

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Last week of programs, will resume June 7, Muffins with mom on Saturday

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: In the garden, who's been here by Lindsay George

      Movement: Little Brown Seed

      Early Literacy Aside: Our next story is going to introduce numbers in different ways, so I hope you'll all help me count the caterpillars! It's important to know numbers as well as letters when we're practicing our early literacy skills.

      Nonfiction: Ten little caterpillars by Bill Martin

      Movement/Flannelboard: Garden vs. Not Garden game

      Short story: Hooray for spring by Kazuo Iwamura


      Short story: The Patterson Puppies and the Rainy Day by Leslie Patricelli

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Bleeding tissue rainbow flowers

      Prep: Die cut flower shapes out of shirt cardboard. Bleeding art tissue paper, water, and paint brushes

      Kids "paint" the flowers

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, April 30, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: It's Snakesss

      • 4-30-14: I only have one more storytime, so of course a gazillion people and lots of new people showed up today! Like, more than 30! Storytime got even more exciting when one of the moms suggested she pop home and bring back her snake and I was like YES! So we not only read stories about snakes, and sang songs about snakes, and looked at cool pictures of snakes (yes, even the ones where it's eating whole rats) we also got to touch a real snake! She's promised to bring him back for the reptile science program this summer as well. We did end up with some paint on the chalkboard (totally my fault, since I was watching her kid because you can't watch a snake and an active child at the same time and I wasn't watching close enough....) but that's all good too since it's hardly noticeable, but enough that I now have a reason to request the chalkboard be repainted so that it's magnetic which it was suppose to be in the first place but somehow wasn't.
      Dancing time and name tags: "Silly Dance Contest" by Jim Gill sings the Sneezing Song 

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Closed on Friday, next week is the last week of programs.

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: My snake Blake by Randy Sieger

      Early Literacy Aside: We're going to sing our next song with the help of some special toys - something you can make really easily at home! Having something to do with your hands while you're reading or singing can help you remember better - try looking around at home for simple props or check out some of our book and puppet bags.

      Movement: I'm being swallowed by a boa constrictor

      Nonfiction: Snakes by Nic Bishop

      Movement: Mr. Snake

      Short story: On my way to the bath by Sarah Maizes

      Short story: Monkey's friends by Ruth Brown

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Wiggly Snakes

      Prep: Acrylic paint, brushes, paper plates, wooden snakes. Ask parents to help pour out small amounts of paint. Aprons.

      Kids paint - snakes can dry on paper plates, works better if there is wax paper.

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, April 23, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: That's Good, That's Bad!

      • 4-23-14: I bought a used copy of Lexau's That's Good, That's Bad specifically for this storytime! Really small group - 9 people with a couple coming in later - but I am working on being calm and not stressing about this. 
      Dancing time and name tags: "Silly Dance Contest" from Jim Gill sings the Sneezing Song

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Pete the Cat on Friday

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: That's Good, That's Bad by Joan Lexau

      Movement: It's a tiger by David LaRochelle

      Early Literacy Aside: We've looked at some more complicated comparisons, now we're going to look at a simpler one - quiet vs. loud. Learning the words to compare things from simple ones like big and little to more complicated, like good and bad, are part of building vocabulary and other early literacy skills.

      Nonfiction/Flannelboard: Loud Quiet by Leslie Patricelli

      Short story: That's good, that's bad by Margery Cuyler

      Short story: Umbrella by Ingrid Schubert

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Dry Chalk Wet Paper (from MaryAnn Kohl's Preschool Art)

      Prep: Tub of water, construction paper, chalk

      Kids dip the paper in the water then draw with chalk.

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, April 9, 2014

      Circus Party

      • 4-9-13: This is our annual massive collaboration, all-library party. It involves my colleague from the school district (the prime mover and shaker), two of our three four year old kindergartens and their staff, and is set throughout the entire library. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 people came this year, although it's impossible to really count, as well as around 15 kids from the local special education school, Lakeland School. We plan for it most of the year and it celebrates both Week of the Young Child and National Library Week (although it's not always on the specific date, since we have it on a no-4k day).
      • Things to remember for next year
        • Someone needs to direct traffic. I forgot that patrons would probably not remember that they can't park in the lots of nearby businesses. It might help to also include some parking directions in the flyers.
        • Don't have limited/finite performers. I told myself this last year and then let myself be talked into getting a balloon artist again. Next year, get something that doesn't require a waiting line and a cut-off time! Some people were very sad that they didn't get a balloon.
        • Facepaint - we do this every year and it's huge, but it's too big. We need to have, if possible, more than one station and at least 3 painters. 4 would be better.
        • Scheduling an extra aide the afternoon before to help set up was a good idea. I also think I did a good job of keeping things from getting too overwhelming, even if I did have to be the NO librarian.
      Giveaways
      • Bag for crafts etc.
      • Elephant mask
      Lobby
      • Sno-Cones
      • Animal crackers
      • Carrots and apples
      • Mini hot dogs
      • Photo ops and decorations (silly faces, masks, etc.)
      Storyroom
      • Circus music
      • juggling station - scarves and light squishy things
      • felt beanbags
        • Cut out with die cut, partially sewed closed. The kids stuffed them with felt and we had darning needles available to close them.
      Children's Area--play area tables
      • Circus wagon craft
      • Circus hat craft
      Book display - Children's area

      Young Adult room
      • Tim Glander, magician/balloon artist, 10:30-11:30 (noted on sign, had to turn away people)
      Upstairs Hallway - acrobatics
      • Balancing beam
      • Hula hoops on ground to jump through
      • Bowling game in stacks
      Local History nook
      • Facepaint

      Wednesday, April 2, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Hippos

      • 4-2-14: I've done a hippo storytime before, but it was long, long ago. I didn't plan ahead enough for this one, so I had to use what I could get right away. I wanted a more nonfiction-ish book, but this one worked out fine and the kids loved it. I had 18 people in storytime, but another 9 came in as we were ending and did the project.
      Dancing time (shakers) and name tags: "Silly Dance Contest" from Jim Gill sings the Sneezing Song

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: No PI next week - circus!

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: The Hippo-not-a-mus by Tony Payne

      Movement: Hippo on a bus

      Nonfiction: Hidden Hippo by Joan Gannij

      Early Literacy Aside: Singing is an important early literacy skill. You can make up your own songs by putting new words to old favorites.

      Movement: Hippo Hokey Pokey

      Short story: Here comes firefighter Hippo by Jonathan London

      Short story: Here comes Doctor Hippo by Jonathan London

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: I Spy pictures

      Prep: Die cut large circles out of big paper. Markers, crayons

      Kids draw pictures around the holes

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, March 19, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Elephants

      • 3-19-14: Drizzly, rainy day, only 15 attendees. There were a couple people outside, but they didn't realize it was ok to come in late!
      Dancing time and name tags: "Boots" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Messy Art Club, We Explore, T-shirts, no programs Spring Break

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Early Literacy Aside: Our first story is a guessing game, where we'll be asking lots of questions. As kids develop, they're able to answer questions faster but it can still take up to 10 seconds, so don't worry if we don't get answers right away!

      Long story: The Thingamabob by Il Sung Na

      Flannelboard: I dream of an elephant by Ami Rubinger

      Nonfiction: Amazing Animals: Elephants by Kate Riggs

      Movement/Puppets: Big Gray Elephant

      Short story: What to do if an elephant stands on your foot by Michelle Robinson

      Short story: Elecopter by Michael Slack

      Short story: Hide and Seek by Il Sung Na

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Painting

      Prep: Paint cups, paintbrushes, paper, aprons

      Kids paint!

      Take Home Insert

      Friday, March 14, 2014

      We Explore Favorite Artist Melissa Sweet

      • 3-14-14: Ideally, I'd do the second half of this with watercolors, but I don't have any so we just used tempera paint. I was so tired this week I was thinking about using crayons or getting colored pencils instead, but I soldiered on! I would have liked to have a more thematic snack (like pie or berries or ice cream or something), but without an official assistant I felt that was too complicated. I think this was my BEST yet. A great group of kids and, most exciting to me, three families drove 30 minutes from another town specifically because someone had told them about this program!
      Art Project Part 1: Magazine collages (10-10:15)
      • I encouraged kids and parents to cut out words as well as pictures to decorate their paper and reminded them to leave room to paint!
      • Supplies
        • old magazines
        • scissors, glue
        • 9x18 white construction paper
      Storytime/Snacktime (10:15-10:40)
      • I started with Carmine a little more red and we talked about all the different fancy words and practiced pronouncing them. Then I asked the parents to distribute the snacks and we read Easy as pie, and Rubia and the three Osos.
      • Supplies
        • strawberry fig newtons, apples
        • napkins
      Art Project Part 2: Painting (10:45-11)
      • The parents had already tidied up the collage materials, so we just brought out the paint cups and put on our aprons
      • Supplies
        • Aprons, paper towels
        • Paint cups (red, green, blue), paint brushes

      Wednesday, March 12, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Yum, Yum, Food!

      • 3-12-14: This is, wonder of wonders, a brand-new storytime! Not recycled at all! Small but attentive group - 14. We didn't read Who ate all the Cookie Dough or do "five little doughnuts" because we spent a long time discussing Time to eat. Also, they really loved Runaway Dinner, which made me sooo happy. I think the book is hysterical and awesome but a lot of the time kids just don't get it - all my kids this time were 3-4 and they totally got it!
      Dancing time and name tags: "Boots" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Mad scientists, we explore art and stories

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: Runaway Dinner by Allan Ahlberg

      Storytelling/Flannelboard: Enormous Carrot

      Movement: Five little kernels

      Early Literacy Aside: Nonfiction is a great way to build vocabulary and learn exciting new words! There is some fun nonfiction on display in the storyroom and also some suggestions on the board where you can find more nonfiction in the library.

      Nonfiction: Time to eat by Robin Page

      Movement: Five little doughnuts

      Short story: Hungry Hen by Richard Waring

      Short story: Who ate all the cookie dough by Karen Beaumont

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Hungry circles

      Prep: Paper plates, glue, seeds

      Kids glue the seeds in circles and patterns on their plates

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, March 5, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Ducks

      • 3-5-14:  It snowed AGAIN but I still had a decent group - 16 people. The kids were very attentive but not very interactive. The group was just too small. We really like button people though, and are always happy when that craft comes out. [replaced Do like a duck does and Duck and Goose]
      • 10-24-12: Last storytime of the fall session. A bit smaller group, since this is the monthly playgroup with Miss Pattie over at the Parks and Rec center. We didn't get around to Duck and Goose and Duck Soup was a bit old for this audience, but fun nevertheless and button people are one of our favorite crafts.
      Dancing time and name tags: "Boots" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Lego Club tomorrow, newsletter available with early literacy calendar

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: Duck soup by Jackie Urbanovic

      Early Literacy Aside: Repetition and singing is a good way to learn vocabulary. Remind yourself of this when you're singing the same song the umpteenth time - it's all for the sake of education.

      Movement/puppets: Down on Grandpa's Farm

      Nonfiction: Just ducks! by Nicola Davies

      Movement/Flannelboard: Five little ducks

      Short story: Duck to the rescue by John Himmelman

      Short story: Clumsy Duck by Britta Teckentrup

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Button People from Kids Can Press Jumbo Book of Crafts by Judy Ann Sadler

      Prep: Pipecleaners, buttons, bead heads, beads, permanent markers, scissors

      Kids string the buttons to create button puppets.

      Take Home Insert

      Wednesday, February 26, 2014

      Preschool Interactive: Build it! With Animals!


      • 2-26-14: Small group - it's freezing and windy - but a core group of very attentive kids. I almost didn't read to the end of the plan, but reminded myself that it's ok if some kids wander out, the rest are listening (even if that's only...um...6)
      • 11-14-12: This was a really, really good storytime. We had a large group (most of them late, but that doesn't really bother me and lots of them are coming from gym time). The kids sat through all the stories and several people remarked on how much they loved the craft. A good reminder that it doesn't have to be fancy to be good!
      Dancing time and name tags: "Boots" by Laurie Berkner from Victor Vito

      Introduction, welcome, and announcements: Mad Scientists tomorrow, Dr. Seuss on Friday

      Opening name song: The more we get together

      Long story: A house in the woods by Inga Moore

      Early Literacy Aside: Rhymes and poetry are a good way to learn to hear the small sounds in words. In addition to rhyming picture books, you can find whole books of poetry back in the nonfiction area!

      Movement/Flannelboard: There was a little turtle by Vachel Lindsay

      Nonfiction: The very best bed by Rebekah Raye

      Movement/Flannelboard: Two little blackbirds

      Short story: Who's that scratching at my door by Amanda Leslie

      Short story: Too tall houses by Gianna Marino

      Closing song: Sunny Day

      Process art: Build houses with shapes from Storytime Katie

      Prep: Markers, crayons, glue, cut squares and triangles

      Kids glue and decorate the paper to make houses

      Take Home Insert