Thursday, March 18, 2010

Substituting for toddler storytime: A blueprint

I worked for many years with groups of toddlers. Then, I didn't. I worked with preschoolers, older kids, and college students (preschoolers and tweens are the most fun). At my library, I do programs for kids age 3 to 12, with an occasional teen program thrown in. However, I substitute for our marvelous Miss Pattie and...I seem to have lost the knack for working with toddlers. Partly, of course, the problem is the kids don't know me and it's a big group - 30 or more kids and parents. (I never had the knack for babies. I generally try to bribe another librarian to cover those). I think I was also being too slapdash, just grabbing stuff from my preschool storytime. So, I created a backup toddler storytime and tested it today.

It was GREAT!

We started out singing the storytime song I always use to open, then we read Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus with lots of "no" thrown in. Then, having just snagged it out of the box, I read Mo Willems' newest book, Cat the Cat, Who is That? the kids loved it insanely, shrieking out the different animals and exploding with laughter when we named them "Fish the Fish," "Duck the duck" etc. Then we all stood up and sang "Down on Grandpa's Farm" Then we read Jan Thomas' What Will Fat Cat Sit On? and Can YOU Make a Scary Face? both of which I just ordered second copies of for my professional collection and which are my favorite interactive stories EVER. We finished up with animal puppets - all you need is die cut animal shapes, popsicle sticks, tape, crayons, and markers.
It's a winner!

No comments: