Tuesday, October 30, 2018

STEM Challenge: Catapults

  • Program Goals
    • Drop-in program for all ages
    • Experiment with science concepts and materials
    • Build fine motor skills
    • Build STEM skills
    • Attendance: 20
  • Popsicle sticks (small, large, and jumbo)
  • Rubber bands
  • mini cupcake papers, cotton balls
  • regular tape, masking tape, stickers
  • scissors
  • Instructions (printed and on ipad)
How it works
We mostly made the simplest model, but even then a lot of the kids need help wrapping the rubber bands. I guess it's not something they learn in school (either that or I do it a weird/difficult way) and most of the younger kids and some of the older kids needed help to get them on tightly. I had some more difficult models, and my aide worked with some kids and on her own on them, but only got one finished.



Thursday, October 25, 2018

Outreach Storytime: Autumn

  • Program Goals: 
    • Introduce kids to seasons and animal behavior
    • Complement school curriculum focusing on seasons
    • Distribute interactive handout with program marketing
Toddlers (*nonfiction)
  • Tap the magic tree by Christie Matheson (2018)
  • (1 copy) Kitten's Autumn by Eugenie Fernandes (2018)
Preschool and Kindergarten (*nonfiction)
  • Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert (2018)
  • *Every Autumn comes the bear by Jim Arnosky
  • *Rainy, Sunny, Blowy, Snowy by Jane Brocket (2018)
Long Stories (*nonfiction)
  • (1 copy) Winter is coming by Tony Johnston
  • (1 copy) Round Robin by Jack Kent
  • Goodbye summer, hello autumn by Kenard Pak (2018)
  • Those darn squirrels by Adam Rubin (2018)
Movement and Music
Flannelboard and Activities
Vocabulary/Learning Objectives
  • autumn/fall
  • seasons
  • hibernation
  • migration

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

We Explore Resource List: Fall/Harvest

While I run the We Explore Art series my colleagues run We Explore Outdoors/Fall/Preschool Adventures. I'm collecting here the resources I put together for them for the fall programs

Reading list bookmarks
Flannelboards and manipulatives
Rhymes, Songs, and Movement
  • Woolly bear caterpillars
    • brown pompoms, clothespins or popsicle sticks, glue
  • Squirrel ears
    • Strips of brown paper, brown triangles, stapler
    • Staple triangles to strips, then staple strips together to make a crown
  • Flying geese
    • die cut birds, popsicles, tape or ribbon
    • You can either tape the "geese" directly to the stick to make a puppet or attach them to a ribbon and tie the ribbons to the stick, then run to make them "fly"
  • Leaf colors
    • die cut white leaves, paint or drawing materials
Vocabulary and Concepts
    • Migration
    • Hibernation
    • Fall & Autumn
    • Seasons
    • Colors (red, orange, brown, yellow, green)
Books for babies and toddlers (*nonfiction, B-boardbook)
  • *Crayola Fall Colors
  • *Every Autumn comes the bear by Jim Arnosky
  • *Racoons and ripe corn by Jim Arnosky
  • B-Walk and see, 123 by Rosalind Beardshaw
  • *Rainy, Sunny, Blowy, Snowy by Jane Brocket
  • *From apple trees to cider please by Chernesky
  • Pick a circle, gather squares by Chernesky
  • Nuts to you by Lois Ehlert
  • Leaf man by Lois Ehlert
  • Kitten's autumn by Eugenie Fernandes
  • *Animals in fall by Martha Rustad
  • Full of fall by April Pulley Sayre
  • Honey by David Ezra Stein
  • B-Babies in the forest by Ginger Swift
  • B-Stormy night by Salina Yoon
  • *Watching the seasons: Fall (Bullfrog Books)
  • *What happens in fall? (Bullfrog Books)
Books for preschool (*nonfiction)
  • Time for cranberries by Detlefsen
  • In the garden, who's been here? by Lindsay George
  • *Awesome autumn by Bruce Goldstone
  • Tap the magic tree by Christie Matheson
  • *How do you know it's fall? by Ruth Owen
  • Goodbye summer hello autumn by Kenard Pak
  • *Secret life of the woolly bear caterpillar by Laurence Pringle
  • *See what we eat by Scot Ritchie
  • *Hello autumn by Shelley Rotner
  • *Fall leaves: Colorful and crunchy by Martha Rustad
  • *Colors of fall by Laura Purdie Salas
  • *Eat like a bear by April Pulley Sayre
  • *Pick, pull, snap: where once a flower bloomed by Lola Schaefer
  • Tractor Mac: Harvest time by Billy Steers
  • *Winter's coming by Jan Thornhill
  • Miss Maple's Seeds by Eliza Wheeler

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Art Workshop: Mini Watercolors

  • Program Goals
    • Drop-in program for all ages
    • Experiment with art techniques and supplies
    • Build fine motor skills
    • Attendance: 20
  • Colorations ultimate art paper
  • q-tips
  • liquid watercolors, ice cube trays, aprons
I adapted this from Art Workshop for Children by Barbara Rucci

How it works
I cut the paper into sections and poured the paints into the ice cube trays and the kids painted.


Friday, October 19, 2018

Free Lego Build

After many, many years of running Lego Building Club, I moved away from that in favor of open Lego days. The reasons were many - we got new carpeting in our community room, so I tried to shift as many programs back to the Storyroom as possible. It was taking a lot of staff time to haul all the Legos across the library and supervise and attendance was dropping as people got involved in other activities. I had initially moved Lego Building Club to the Community room years ago for space issues and now we could move it back!

The Storyroom has three entrances/exits. You access it from the play area, so moms with younger kids can hang out there while the older kids build. There's an emergency exit tucked in a back corner that leads outside. Finally, the door you see in the photos above leads into my office/staff workroom.

I or my aide sets Legos up on Thursday evening, after whatever other program we have is finished. We put out three big white tables, all the lego bins, and an easel with a sign-in sheet. Friday morning, staff who open prop the door open. That's it. On Saturday or Monday, whichever somebody next works, the Legos are picked up and the sign-ins tallied. I pop in and out throughout the day and occasionally snap some pictures or chat with families. Since we've started doing this, we've averaged about 20-30 people throughout the day and for where we are right now it's working out really well.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Book Explosion: Histories and Mysteries with American Girl

  • Program Goals
    • Meet the needs of kids transitioning out of Rock 'n' Read
    • Encourage both voracious and struggling readers
    • Attendance: 5 (grades 5 and up)
Theme: Histories and Mysteries with American Girl

  • Finger knitting/braiding - yarn
  • Rainbow loom - maker kit
  • Mystery cards
Books (American Girl)
  • Like sisters: Emma moves in
  • A girl named... Misty
  • Samantha mystery: Clue in the castle tower
  • Marie-Grace mystery: Hidden gold
  • Kit mystery: Menace at Mammoth cave
  • Nanea mystery: Legend of the shark goddess
  • Rebecca mystery: showstopper
  • Luciana; Luciana braving the deep; Luciana out of this world by Erin Teagan
  • According to Aggie (graphic novel)
Books (Historical Fiction set in the USA)
  • Fever, 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
  • Lucky broken girl by Ruth Behar (1960s)
  • True confessions of Charlotte Doyle (early 1800s) (YA)
  • Chasing secrets by Choldenko (1900 San Francisco)
  • Mighty Miss Malone by Curtis (Great Depression)
  • Stella by Starlight by Sharon Draper (1930s South)
  • Salt by Helen Frost (American Revolution) (novel in verse)
  • Underground Abductor by Nathan Hale (Civil War) (graphic novel)
  • Detective's assistant by Kate Hannigan (Chicago, 1850s)
  • Full of beans by Jennifer Holm (Great Depression)
  • Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly (1900)
  • Hattie big sky by Kirby Larson (pioneer) (YA)
  • Compass south by Hope Larson (1860s) (graphic novel)
  • Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine (Civil Rights)
  • Betty before X by Shabazz (Civil Rights)
  • Witch of blackbird pond by Elizabeth Speare (Colonial times/Salem witch trials)
  • Moon over Manifest by Vanderpool (WWII)
  • My year in the middle by Lila Quintero Weaver (Civil Rights, 1970s)
  • Countdown by Deborah Wiles (Cold War)
  • One crazy summer by Rita Williams-Garcia (Civil Rights/Black Panthers)
Books (Mysteries)
  • Leaving by Altebrando (YA)
  • Red Blazer girls by Michael Beil
  • Strike three, you're dead by Josh Berk
  • Book scavenger by Jennifer Bertman
  • Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro (YA)
  • Peculiar incident on shady street by Currie (supernatural)
  • London Eye mystery by Siobhan Dowd
  • Into the lion's den by Linda Fairstein
  • Under the egg by Laura Fitzgerald
  • Absolutely, truly by Heather Vogel Frederick
  • Zap by Martha Freeman
  • Spy school by Stuart Gibbs
  • Van Gogh deception by Deron Hicks
  • Wig in the window by Kittscher
  • Case of the vanishing golden frogs by Markle (nonfiction)
  • Kiki Strike inside the shadow city by Kirsten Miller
  • Spirit hunters by Ellen Oh (very creepy)
  • Framed! by James Ponti
  • Enchantment lake by Margi Preus (YA)
  • Woof by Spencer Quinn
  • Westing game by Ellen Raskin
  • Impossible clue by Sarah Rubin
  • York: Shadow Cipher by Laura Ruby (YA)
  • Murder is bad manners by Robin Stevens
  • Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
  • Three times lucky by Sheila Turnage
  • Emperor's riddle by Kat Zhang
Books (Real Girls)
  • Path to the stars by Acevedo (biography, Latina)
  • Battle of Darcy Lane by Tara Altebrando
  • Pashmina by Chanani (graphic novel) (Indian)
  • Secret of danger point by Kim Dwinell (graphic novel)
  • Little leaders: Bold women in black history by Vashti Harrison (biography, African-American)
  • Ruby and Olivia by Rachel Hawkins
  • Sunny side up by Jennifer Holm (graphic novel)
  • Little white duck by Na Liu (graphic novel)

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

STEM Challenge: Ozobots

  • Program Goals
    • Drop-in program for all ages
    • Experiment with science concepts and materials
    • Build fine motor skills
    • Build STEM skills
    • Attendance: 20
  • Educational set of Ozobots (provided by the consortium)
  • Markers (thicker is better)
  • White bulletin board paper to cover the tables
  • Rules to make straight lines
  • Additional coding sheets and games from Ozobot.com
How it works
My aide covered all the tables with paper and we set out Ozobots, markers, and coding sheets. Then the kids came in and played. My aide mostly hung out with them - she hadn't used them before and was interested and she's very patient, which is great because that's the main thing with Ozobots - you have to be patient and draw your lines carefully or you don't get results (not the ones you're looking for anyways).


Wednesday, October 10, 2018

We Explore Art: Ed Emberley

  •  Program Goals:
    • Introduce Ed Emberley and his art
    • Encourage gross and fine motor skills (cutting, gluing, printing)
    • Attendance: 10
Art Project Part 1: Collage (10-10:15)
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)
    • Googly eyes
    • 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. Technically Emberley and his daughter collaborate, but I usually don't talk as much about the art in these books because we're so busy having fun!
  • Books
    • Go away big green monster (puppet)
    • Red Hen (flannelboard)
    • Drummer Hoff
    • Chicken Little
    • If you're a monster and you know it (song)
    • I know an old monster (song)
  • Snack
    • animal crackers
Art Project Part 2: Thumbprints/drawing (10:40-11)
If you don't have stamp pads the kids can color their fingers with markers and press them to the paper. Stamp pads are easier. I also have Emberley's thumbprint and other drawing books on display.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Collaborating with your public library: A win-win for everyone!

This is a 30 minute talk I gave at a local childcare center for their professional development day.

Learn about the many different resources, materials, and services offered by public libraries in general and the Matheson Memorial Library in particular. Storytime kits, technology, online resources, and new books will be showcased along with tips for use in early childhood classrooms.

Talking points
  • What is a library consortium and how does it work?
  • Ask your consortium if they offer
    • Institutional cards/classroom collections
    • Field trips and/or classroom visits
    • Storytime kits
  • Things you may be able to check out at your library
    • Storytime kits and/or toys
    • Maker kits/technology/STEM kits
  • Professional resources you may be able to share
    • Books - child development, storytimes, play spaces, and early literacy
    • Library resources - puppets, die cuts, etc.
Matheson Memorial Library resources
  • Field trips/classroom visits
  • Institutional cards/classroom collections
  • Materials
    • Storytime kits and toy bags
      • http://readnplaylibrary.blogspot.com/
    • Audiobook bags
    • Maker kits
  • Professional resources
    • Professional collection books (includes Big Books)
    • Die cuts (bring your own paper)
    • Craft supplies (glitter, magnets)
    • Puppets, legos, other interesting toys
Online resources
  • Kanopy, Hoopla, Tumblebooks, Freegal (depends on library)
  • Professional resources - Gale courses, Learning Express, Lynda.com (depends on library)
  • Overdrive, Badgerlink
Badgerlink resources
  • Education - Wisconsin Public Television
    • Young Performer's Initiative (music and dance appreciation)
    • PBS Learning Media Wisconsin (educational videos)
  • Teachingbooks.net (activities and teacher resources for books)
  • Britannica School Elementary (nonfiction videos and other resources)
The world of library resources
  • Mel's Desk http://melissa.depperfamily.net/blog/
  • Curious City DPW http://www.curiouscitydpw.com/
  • Delightful children's books https://delightfulchildrensbooks.com/
  • Show me librarian - All things STEAM https://showmelibrarian.blogspot.com/p/all-things-steam.html

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

We Explore Favorite Artist Melissa Sweet

  • Program Goals:
    • Introduce Melissa Sweet and her art
    • Encourage gross and fine motor skills (cutting, drawing)
    • Attendance: 10
Art Project Part 1: Collages (10-10:15)
I encouraged kids and parents to cut out words as well as pictures to create their collage.
  • Supplies
    • old magazines/recycled picture books/galleys
    • scissors, glue sticks
    • 9x18 white construction paper OR shirt cardboard
Storytime/Snacktime (10:15-10:40)
  • Books
    • Carmine a little more red
    • Easy as pie
    • Baabwaa and Wooliam
    • Rubia and the three osos
Art Project Part 2: Watercolors (10:45-11)
I've used actual paint for this, but you get better (and less messy) watercolors with watercolor pencils if they're available.
  • Supplies
    • Watercolor pencils
    • Water, paint brushes
    • Construction paper

Monday, October 1, 2018

Storytime Theme: Goldilocks

This is a resource list for my colleague who provides toddler storytimes at the library and preschool/early literacy training at our local school-sponsored charter school (plus a gazillion other things).

Flannelboards and manipulatives
  • Printed Goldilocks and the three bears flannelboard (see Terri)
Rhymes, songs, and movement

  • Good Ms. Padgett sings The little red hen and other stories (cd)
  • Make your own puppets
    • Teddy bear die cut, gingerbread man person shape
    • Popsicle sticks
    • Decorations, tape
  • Fractured fairy tale
    • For readers - pre-print words and have the kids arrange them and write in their own to create a fractured fairy tale (similar to madlibs)
    • For non-readers - cut out photographs, bears, little girls, chairs, etc. and then add in weird stuff. Have the kids arrange them and then "tell" the story. This will work as a flannelboard too.
  • STEM - how heavy?
    • Small cardboard boxes, weights (rocks? books?)
    • Kids stack items on the boxes until they collapse
    • Bonus if you can use a scale to weigh the items
  • STEM - let's compare
    • Collect items to compare - soft vs hard, hot vs cold, etc.
  • Snacks
    • instant oatmeal (porridge); chocolate pudding; teddy grahams
Vocabulary and Concepts
  • Counting
  • Comparison and degrees (hot, warm, cool, cold)
Classic retellings
  • Goldilocks and the three bears by Jim Aylesworth
  • Goldilocks and the three bears by Caralyn Buehner
  • Goldilocks and the three bears by Lauren Child
  • Three bears by Paul Galdone (long)
  • Goldilocks and the three bears by Valeri Gorbachev
  • Goldilocks by Ruth Sanderson (long)
Fractured retellings
  • Yours truly, Goldilocks by Alma Flor Ada
  • Papa Bear's page fright by Wade Bradford
  • Red Riding Hood meets the three bears by Charlotte Guillain
  • Goldilocks and just one bear by Leigh Hodgkinson
  • Goldilocks and the just right potty by Leigh Hodgkinson
  • Three bears ABC by Grace Maccarone (needs to be replaced - no longer own)
  • Once upon a slime by Andy Maxwell
  • Goldi Rocks and the three bears by Corey Schwartz
  • Goldilocks and the three dinosaurs by Mo Willems
  • 3 bears and Goldilocks by Margaret Willey
Other books
  • Goldilocks variations by Allan Ahlberg (pop-up)
  • Truth about bears by Maxwell Eaton III (nonfiction)
  • Goldilocks and the three bears: a make and play production by Christopher Harbo (puppets)
  • Cook me a story by Brian Kozlowski (cook book)