Tag Archives: early literacy

AtoZ Blogging Challenge – Storytime

21 Apr

bookcase-books-bookshelves-159711Program Name: Storytime

What: You didn’t think I’d get through the whole alphabet without talking about storytime, did you? Storytime is the bread and butter of the children’s department of a public library and everyone’s is a little different.

Where: We have a space in the library specifically for storytime it’s a room that has stadium style seating which works really well for storytime allowing kids to be able to see over people’s heads, unfortunately with the room laid out this way, it’s difficult to do a lot of other programs because there is very little actual floor space to offer programming and no space to set up tables.

When: We offer storytimes that run for a six-week session, four times a year. We’ve always taken breaks throughout the year and it allows our storytellers time to breathe, relax and get geared up for the next session. Our patrons beg us to offer programs during the breaks between storytimes and that is the chance we get to try new ideas or stand-alone storytimes.

Who: We offer storytimes for kids from birth – 5 years old through with six storytime classes to choose from, plus a Saturday storytime option once a month as well. Our six options include Infant, Toddler, Preschool, Family and Pajama.

How: We’re lucky enough to have a number of staff members who lead storytime allowing us the opportunity to offer so many options, but this is so easily adaptable to the amount of staff and space you have in your own  library. If you’re looking for pre-made storytime plans, you’ll find many online, and in fact, you can check out my storytime plans as well!


  • Yoga
  • Parachute
  • Family
  • Pajama
  • Rhymes and Songs
  • STEM (Preschool Explorers)


During the month of April, I’ll be participating in the 2018 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. For this year’s theme, I’ll be offering you a library program plan with everything you to need to re-create it at your own library. Most of these programs we’ve offered in the past, others are programs I’d like to try in the future. I’m always looking for new inspiration and I thought you might be too!


Parachute Storytime: Hats Off!

7 Mar


I got a chance to do two parachute storytimes yesterday and it’s fun to see the kids who really love the parachute get a chance to release some energy with lots of movement. A few kids come in with much more trepidation, but most will stay and just observe. This was a stand alone storytime program, although we have offered this in a six-week session and kids will often become more comfortable after seeing the parachute week after week. My first group of kids had a lot of energy, so the books were harder to get through, but they loved the activities. My second group of kids is an integrated storytime with families as well as a small group of children from our early intervention services program from the county – this group was a little bit older and they all did an amazing job listening to not only the stories but also the directions. At the beginning of parachute storytime I teach the kids that when I say “FREEZE!” our parachute is placed on the floor (which works well for a little classroom management). Overall, the kids had a ton of fun playing with parachute, releasing some winter energy and the adults were having a great time watching their kids, taking pictures and enjoying themselves as well!


  • A Good Day for a Hat by T. Nat Fuller, illustrated by Rob Hodgson
  • You Must Bring a Hat! by Simon Philip, illustrated by Kate Hindley

Rhymes & Songs:

  • Introduction: Hello Parachute (Jbrary)Hello parachute, hello parachute (gently shake parachute)
    Oh so grand, oh so grand
    I can lift you, I can lift you (lift parachute)
    With my hands, with my hands
  • Song: “The Tempo Marches On” by Jim Gill (Jim Gill Sings Do Re Mi On His Toe Leg Knee)
  • Rhyme: Grand Old Duke of York
    Oh, the grand old Duke of York,
    He had ten thousand men,
    He marched them up to the top of the hill (raise the chute)
    And he marched them down again (lower)
    And when they’re up, they’re up (raise)
    And when they’re down, they’re down (lower),
    And when they’re only half-way up, (raise half-way)
    They’re neither up nor down (raise, lower). 
  • Song: “Battu” by Angelique Kidjo (Putumayo Kids: African Playground)“Popcorn” with balls tossed on the parachute
  • Rhyme: Bananas Unite
    Bananas unite!
    Peel bananas, peel, peel bananas
    Chop bananas, chop chop bananas
    Mash bananas, mash mash bananas
    Eat bananas, eat, eat bananas
    Go Bananas!
  • Song: “Aves” by Guillermo Anderson (Putumayo Kids: Animal Playground)
  • Closing: Goodbye Parachute
    Goodbye parachute, goodbye parachute (gently shake parachute)
    Time to go, time to go
    I can help you, I can help you
    Parachute low, parachute low (bring the parachute to ground)

Don’t Huff and Puff! Check out Huffington Post’s Best Picture Books of 2017

13 Dec

Huffington Post recently posted their Best Picture Books of 2017 in a way you don’t normally expect from “Best of” lists. Rather than just picking one title or a handful of “Best of” titles. The contributor, Minh Le, is a children’s author and has created such a unique list of titles and a bunch that I haven’t gotten a chance to read yet under headings like:

  • Most Touching
  • Most Charming
  • Best Surprise
  • Best Family
  • Best Adventure
  • Best History
  • Funniest
  • Most Clever
  • Best on Creativity
  • Best Concept
  • Best (Auto)Biography
  • Most Beautiful
  • Best Nature/Environment
  • Best Read Aloud
  • Most Exuberant/Fun
  • Most Powerful
  • Best Friendship/Kindness
  • Best Design
  • BestBedtime


So if you’re looking for some great picture books to share with people of all ages – take a look at this awesome list!

November is… Picture Book Month

1 Nov

PBMBADGE-AMBASSADOR-FBAll this month, I’ll be sharing my picture book love on my blog as part of Picture Book Month! I’ll be highlighting a different book each day that matches that day’s theme according to the 2017 Calendar and I’ll be sharing the link to each author/illiustrator’s essays on why picture books are important. These essays make for great reading each day and it’s fun to see the similarities and differences each person writes about. Check out the calendar below to get a sneak preview of this year’s themes and get ready to share some awesome picture books!



25 Picture Books for Halloween

29 Oct

halloween picture books.png

  1. Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Peter Brown
  2. Skeleton Hiccups by Margery Cuyler, illustrated by S.D. Schindler
  3. Shivery Shades of Halloween by Mary McKenna Siddals, illustrated by Jimmy Pickering
  4. Vunce Upon a Time by J. Otto Seibold, illustrated by Siobhan Vivian
  5. Click, Clack, Boo!: A Tricky Treat by Doreen Cronin, illustrated by Betsy Lewin
  6. 10 Trick-or-Treaters by Janet Schulman
  7. Ten Orange Pumpkins: A Counting Book by Stephen Savage
  8. The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey
  9. A Very Brave Witch by Alison McGhee, illustrated by Harry Bliss
  10. The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything by Linda Williams, Megan Lloyd

  11. Ghosts In the House! by Kazuno Kohara
  12. If You’re A Monster And You Know It by Rebecca Emberley, illustrated by Ed Emberley
  13. Go Away Big, Green Monster by Ed Emberley
  14. The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz
  15. Plumply, Dumply Pumpkin by Mary Serfozo
  16. Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Alex Scheffler
  17. Los Gatos Black on Halloween by Marisa Montes, illustrated by Yuyi Morales
  18. AlphaOops: H Is for Halloween by Alethea Kontis, illustrated by Bob Kolar
  19. Mouse’s First Halloween by Lauren Thompson
  20. Where’s My Mummy? by Carolyn Crimi, illustrated by John Manders
  21. I Am a Witch’s Cat by Harriet Muncaster
  22. Pumpkin Eye by Denise Fleming
  23. Pumpkin Trouble by Jan Thomas
  24. Little Boo by Sephen Wunderli, illustrated by Tim Zeitner
  25. Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper
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