For Make it and Take it on Monday we made pom poms, using the instructions in the Kids Can Press Jumbo Book of Crafts. Nobody does craft books like Kids Can, and this is one of my favorites. The pom poms were really easy to make and the kids figured them out right away, even the littles who came in to join us. You can see pictures here.
We had Wii on Tuesday, but there just aren't enough controllers for everyone - or that many interested kids, so in the interests of peace, while we're still formulating our policy, I opened the storyroom and told the kids they could make me some giant snowflakes to hang from the ceiling. This worked on the one hand - the kids were really excited, several of them made some gorgeous snowflakes, a couple boys played a lengthy and fairly calm monopoly game, but I had to kick out some kids for general disturbance bordering on fighting, a bunch of smaller kids came in and wanted help with the crafts and I had to explain several times it wasn't a program, and I forgot to tell anyone to clean up, so there was a mess. This needs more organization!
For Messy Art Club on Wednesday, we made fingerprint art, a la Ed Emberley. Pictures here. As you can see, we had a big mix of older and younger kids. I had about 10 stamp pads, but there weren't really enough - although the kids were very good about wiping their fingers before changing colors! I would do this program again, but probably as a Make it and Take it, which generally has a smaller crowd.
Our theme for preschool storytime on Thursday was meant to be ducks, but I realized partway through it was really eggs! We started with Barney Saltzberg's Good Egg, which I have in my professional collection. I asked all the kids (all 6 of them - we have very intimate preschool storytimes) what comes out of eggs. "Chicks!" "Ducks!" "Dinosaurs!" that last was completely unexpected, but hilarious. Mostly for the dinosaur kid, we read Emily Gravett's Odd Egg next and they EXPLODED with laughter at the surprise finish. Then we read Jackie Urbanovic's Duck Soup and Catherine Friend's Perfect Nest. I switched to Jim Gill's The Tempo Marches On for an opening song b/c I was too tired to do all the jumping and I got everyone's names right in our name song, except the twins and they're impossible to tell apart. We used my new duck die cuts to make "dancing ducks" by decorating them and taping them to ribbon which we tied to popsicle sticks.
I opened the storyroom again Thursday afternoon for the middle schoolers, but it worked better this time. I gave them yarn and a quick tutorial on making pom poms, reminded them to clean up (which they did) and they were fine. It was a slightly different (and smaller) group of kids which probably helped.
Happily, my incipient cold/sinus infection (which I am sure I caught from my mom over the phone last weekend) disappeared. Unfortunately, I seem to have passed it on to at least two of my colleagues and possibly more. We also had our book sale/bake sale this weekend and I made lemon cupcakes. They looked nice but I personally thought they tasted rather vile. Oh well. It was an experiment.