Saturday, January 25, 2014

Storytime Saturday: Monsters

I've been the storytime lady at our local library for almost a year now. It's a pretty sweet gig - only during the school year (we have volunteer parents do it during the summertime) and I set the hours. My biggest rule is - no school for my kids, no storytime. That allows me to be with my kids when I need to be and also to ensure that I'm 100% focused on being a mom OR storytime lady. I've learned through children's church teaching and a spring break meltdown during storytime last year that I am not able to do both at the same time. The exception is that Squirt comes with me during an afternoon storytime twice a month (all of my 8 storytimes are twice a month), but he does relatively well during that one.

I thought I'd let you all in on my life as the storytime lady (is there a better term for this job? It sounds weird to me.). I really love this, by the way. I love the kids I read to - for the most part, they sit really well. I appreciate the teachers and moms who compliment me. I love the flexibility of the schedule. I love the books. I don't love the crafts but I tolerate them.

This week, the theme was monsters. I tried to stay away from anything that could be remotely scary; there are kids who are freaked out easily. I think I picked out some good books for these. I mostly scour other librarian/storytime blogs for ideas on books. I usually pick between 12-30 books and then practice and read through them to pick 3-6 ones for each storytime. I try to switch it up between a few of the classes because a couple kids are repeats in various preschools and storytimes.

The books:
Glad Monster, Sad Monster by Ed Emberly and Anne Miranda
If You're a Monster and You Know It by Ed and Rebecca Emberly
Spike, the Mixed-up Monster by Susan Hood and Melissa Sweet
Go Away, Big Green Monster by Ed Emberly (this guy knows his monsters)
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendack
There Was an Old Monster by Rebecca Emberly, Adrian Emberly, and Ed Emberly

I just realized that those Emberlys wrote most of my monster books. Strange! Those each have really vivid colored pictures which were pretty fun.

Songs:
I used If You're a Monster and You Know It for one song. Then after I did two storytimes, I realized I needed another song. So I found a version of Heads, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes. It's called Horns, Fangs, Knees, and Claws.

Horns, Fangs, Knees, and Claws.
Knees and Claws
Horns, Fangs, Knees, and Claws.
Knees and Claws
Eyes and ears and tails and paws.
Horns, Fangs, Knees, and Claws
Knees and Claws.

The kids really enjoyed that last song. One little boy in a preschool sang with me for the first time! Yay! That's progress.

Craft:
Straw-painting Monsters. My scanner isn't working and I don't feel like taking a picture, but maybe I will later.

Basically you put blobs of paint on a piece of paper. Then have the kids blow (not suck as some want to!) the paint out. These make the "monsters" and then you put googly eyes on the monsters - however many you want. Kids LOVE googly eyes.

I really like crafts that take less than 15 minutes to do. I want easy peasy lemon squeezy crafts. Some kids can take ALLLLLL DAYYYY to do crafts, but a lot of them just don't have the attention span prior to age 5 to do complicated stuff. Plus, except at the library storytime it's often 3 adults to 10+ kids! So the easier the better.

That's basically it for this time. I have an off-week next week and then the next storytime is on emotions. Hopefully, the die cut I need for the craft will get here in time for me to make what I want. Otherwise, I'll have to come up with a new craft! Ah.

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