Thursday, October 25, 2012

Flannel Friday-Baseball Fever

With the Detroit Tigers in the World Series, I have baseball fever.  Unfortunately, there are not a lot of good baseball flannelboards out there (something to fix in the future!).  I found the best of what I have that has a baseball in it.  This flannelboard game came from Storytime Magic by Kathy MacMillan and Christine Kirker.  What is really nice about this book is that the rhymes are in the book and the book directs you to patterns housed on ALA's web site.  I like patterns.  :)

Due to copyright rules, I will just give you one line of the guessing game.  The rest can be seen in the book (or you can email me).
I'm small and white.  After a hard hit I fly through the air!  What sport do you play with me?
I am hosting this week's round-up!  Check it out at Libraryland

Play to Learn-Nursery Rhymes

This month's program followed the theme of nursery rhymes.  I really like using nursery rhymes with young children because of their songlike quality.  When you use songs, you slow down the language, which helps young children to hear word parts and understand what you are saying.

Station 1: Making Nametags
I had precut 5 shapes with our AccuCut machine (kitten, cow, lamb, teddy bear, and pig).  The shapes were the closest animals that I could find to represent various nursery rhymes.  The kids could pick out their shapes, write their name on them, and attach them to their shirts with tape.  To assist the kids in writing their names, I typed out all of their first names on a piece of paper and ran a couple of copies to put at this station.  This way they could also recognize their name from the list and try to duplicate the letters if they aren't quite ready to spell their name on their own.

As librarians, we know that learning to read and learning to write go together.  At this station, the children are learning to recognize letters and how they are formed.  They are also strengthening their hand muscles as they write (kind of like exercise) so they can eventually write smaller letters and longer sentences.

Station 2: Which is Your Favorite?
I took the 5 shapes from above and wrote out the nursery rhyme that goes with them on each shape.  Then I stuck them to the wall above a piece of blank paper.  As kids come to this station, we asked them to read the rhyme and choose their favorite.  When the chose, we asked them to write their name on the paper by the shape.

This station was easy to put together, but it was very important because it put a lot of our ECRR2 skills together.  First, the parents are reading the rhymes, which promotes a love of reading.  Because of the songlike nature of the rhymes, the language is slowed down so children can hear all of the parts of the words.  As they choose which rhyme is their favorite, they are using letter knowledge to write their name.  As an added bonus, we are using early math skills by looking at the papers and seeing which rhymes the kids like the most (graphing skill).

Station 3: Make a Book
I used the Hey Diddle, Diddle mini-book that is in Literacy Centers and Activities for Nursery Rhymes, Volume 1.  The kids colored the pages and stapled the book together.

By completing this book, the kids were working on their comprehension skill.  This means that they are learning that words have meaning.  The illustrations match the simple text so you can see that there is a cow jumping over the moon right next to the words "cow jumped over the moon".  Coloring is also an exercise which develops strength in the kids' fingers, which helps them get strong enough to write.

Station 4: Baa Baa Color Sheep
We started off by providing a sheep pattern run off on cardstock.  This made it sturdier when the kids carried their creations away from the station.  We had colored tissue paper grass left over from a previous collage craft event that we used as the wool.  A little bit of grass will go a long way with this craft.  The kids glued their "wool" onto their sheep, then wrote the name of the color in the blank space.

If you use the grass, you will want a vacuum cleaner on hand to help clean up when the program is over.  If you would like to make this craft less messy, try using colored paper shapes, such as circles or squares.  While I preferred using the grass because of its sensory quality, not everybody can handle the mess that comes with it.

By using a glue stick to glue the "wool" on the sheep, the kids are working on their fine motor skills.  This also is exercise to help their hands get ready to write.  As the kids write the color name in the blank, they are learning that words have meaning (the wool should match the color name).

Station 5: Little Miss Muffet Magnet Rhyme
This station came out of  October/November 2008 issue of The Mailbox.  Little Miss Muffet was written out with the "t" dropped from the word tuffet.  We put magnetic letters on the board and had the kids add those letters to the rhyme and sound out the new word.  It helps if you pull out only consonants, such as b, p, or s.

At this station, the kids learned that letters have sounds and that those sounds are parts of words.  By playing with the word "tuffet", the kids were able to play with those sounds while having fun.

Station 6: Read the Story
We put this station in the same area as Stations 7 and 8 as a lot of the activities go together.  First, I gathered up a lot of our nursery rhyme books in a variety of formats.

Then we made many of the folder stories in Literacy Centers and Activities for Nursery Rhymes, Volumes 1 and 2.  The kids had a lot of fun with these because many have flaps or movable parts.

The kids practiced reading at this station, which encourages them to learn how to read on their own.  By sharing reading with their children, parents were helping them to develop vocabulary and comprehension, nurturing a love of reading, and motivating their children to want to learn to read.
Station 7: Baa Baa Shape Sheep
This flannelboard activity came from Making Learning Fun. (Note-if you aren't familiar with this site and work with children, bookmark it!)  We put out the flannel sheep and the rhyme and the kids had a great time playing.  Not only would they recite the rhyme, they would sort all of the sheep (another math skill!).

Station 8: Stick Puppet Theater
I created a bunch of the stick puppets from Literacy Centers and Activities for Nursery Rhymes, Volumes 1 and 2.  Then I created a puppet theater for the kids as seen here.  What was fun as that a lot of the times the parents would sit on one side and the kids would sit on the other.  Then they would each put on a show for the other side.

I do have to say that this Play to Learn took a lot of work to put together.  Our library system is starting to put together kits so we can trade throughout the branches.  This became the first one.

Flannel Friday Round-Up

It's Friday, which means it is time for some great Flannel Friday ideas!

Just in time for Halloween, Anne at So Tomorrow brings us Five Little Pumpkins.

If you are looking for an adorable monster to use with your flannelboards, check out Dorothy's Polka Dotty Monster.  Dorothy has asked for help with a poem or rhyme to go with it, so get your creative juices flowing and help her out!

Do you need another Halloween flannelboard?  The Perfect Pumpkin at Miss Courtney Meets Bobo is a great interactive story.

How do you explain the concept of scary to small children?  Kay at Storytime ABC's gives us a great way to do so with a poem and a giggling ghost.

If you have missed the ongoing discussion lately on the Flannelboard Friday Facebook page, you will definitely want to check out Sarah's It Started with a Sneeze to see her full sneezing story time.

Mis Mary Liberry shows us how to create a robot out of shapes, while pulling out a whole bunch of early childhood skills like print awareness, sorting, and learning vocabulary.  This would also make a great craft!

It always makes me excited to see Pete the Cat as the first flannelboard on a page.  (I am a HUGE Pete the Cat fan!)  Busy Crafting Mommy shows us her Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons, her rendition of Dog in Boots, and a flannelized version of How Do I Put It On?  Altogether, you have a great clothing story time! 

Pete the Cat also appears at 1234 More Storytimes as we look for his missing buttons in the flannelboard game Button Button, Who's Got the Button.

Notes from the Story Room shows us how to create reversible stick puppets for a retelling of "The Fox and the Crab Have a Race".  It is part of her upcoming family story time on "tails", which I think is a really interesting theme.

The Library Lady reminds us all that imagination is a powerful tool and that we as educators can show the parents ways to do this.  She gives us the actions for "On Halloween Night" to use with our groups.

How many of us can actually say that we have a flannelboard that will work with the letter X?  Storytime Kate gives us X-Rays!  Yes, they really look like x-rays, but would work great for a letter X story time, a doctor story time, or one about parts of the body.

Amanda brings us 2 bird story times at Trails & Tales.  The first is about water birds (and I love the craft idea).  The second is about raptors

Mother Goose goes pink at Piper Loves the Library.  She gives us a really interesting idea to support breast cancer awareness month in story time.

My Tigers are in the World Series so I had to find something with a baseball in it.  You can play the Ball Guessing Game at Libraryland

Enjoy!  If you haven't been here before, make sure you stop by the Flannel Friday Pinterest page or our Flannel Friday blog for more information.  Next week Trails and Tails will be hosting our Thanksgiving Extravaganza.  Start pulling together your turkey flannelboards now!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Flannel Friday-Mouse Shapes

We have a shape story time coming up and it is really hard to find good flannelboards on this subject.  I took the book Mouse Shapes by Ellen Stoll Walsh and partially flannelized it.  You'll see what I mean below.  There are a lot of great basic shapes in this book that combine to make things, such as wagons or books.

In the picture above, you can see a tree made out of 1 green triangle and 1 brown rectangle.  There is a sun made out of 1 yellow circle.  A house is made out of 1 red square and 1 red triangle.  The wagon is made out of 1 orange rectangle and 2 blue circles.  Finally, the book is made out of 2 turquoise trapezoids.

To help keep the shape creations straight, I added a picture index in the front of the file folder in which I store the flannelboard.

Of course, there are a lot of complicated creations made out of shapes so I copied those, laminated them, and added velcro to the back.

This week's round-up is hosted by Mollie at What Happens in Storytime.  Stop by to check out all of the great ideas!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Flannel Friday-Props!

I have been inspired by Flannel Friday this fall and have been building props to use for my various story times and programs.  They all use 36x48 trifold presentation boards, because I can fold them flat when I am done with them for storage.

The first creation originally came from Future Librarian Superhero when she created her house-shaped finger puppet stage.  I loved the idea, but it wasn't something that I could use with a group of 30+ kids and their parents due to its size.  So presentation board #1 was cut, painted with blue paint, and had foam details added.  I couldn't fit the door and make it look symmetrical.  With the bigger windows I was able to use larger puppets to go through the windows.

As an added bonus, while I was painting this house, I happened upon a prop poem in Books in Bloom: Creative Patterns & Props that Bring Stories to Life by Kimberly Faurot called "Mouse House".  It worked great with the kids because they liked the interactive part of the poem where they got to call the mouse.  They also liked that mice hid behind the windows.

Well, it didn't stop there.  Future Librarian Superhero also created a cool barn out of a cardboard box.  I needed mine to be able to collapse flat, so once again I pulled out my display board, cut a door in it, and painted it red.  To add an early literacy component to it, I named my farm and put a sign at the top of the barn.

Needless to say, singing Old MacDonald has never been cooler at story time.

Number 3 happened by accident and isn't as cool as the first two.  I am doing a program next week where the toddlers will go through various literacy centers based on nursery rhymes.  I had some great stick puppets, but really wanted a puppet theater for them to be able to tell the rhymes.  Voila!  Another presentation board became a puppet theater.

For this one, I did add booktape along the cut out rectangle so the kids don't catch themselves on the edge.  Part of me originally thought that the rectangle needed a bright colored border, maybe in foam, but then I changed my mind.  This way the puppets will really stand out.

The round-up this week is hosted by Read Sarah Read!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Flannel Friday-Halloween Extravaganza

In honor of this week's special Halloween extravaganza, I have three rhymes/stories below (actually, I couldn't make up my mind).

Mouse's Halloween House
This flannelboard came from Mother Goose's Playhouse by Judy Sierra.  It is about a mouse who finds a big orange house and nibbles a hole in the middle to make a door.  She nibbles two holes near the top to make two windows.  Then she nibbles a wide hole near the bottom so that all her children can ran in and out.  Finally, she puts a candle inside to light up the darkness.

With this flannelboard, I used a combination of felt and laminated paper.  My mice would never look as good as the patterns in the book, so I colored those and laminated them.  The pumpkin parts are all felt, along with the candle.  I did add a little velcro to the back of the candle to help hold it to the pumpkin's mouth.

Pumpkin Man (Interactive Story)
This story came from Best of Dr. Jean: Puppets and Storytime by Jean Feldman.  You will need an easel or dry erase board (depending on the size of your group) and a marker.  Start off by teaching your group 4 actions that they will need for the story:  knock (pretend to knock), rock (sway back and forth), spin (twirl hands about), and come in (make hand motion).  While I can't retell the whole story (copyright rules), I can show you the major parts.
Two big, black books come to visit the little old lady.
Two bony legs visit the little old lady.
A funny body visits the little old lady.
Two wiggly arms visit the little old lady.
Two big hands visit the little old lady.
Finally, the creature has a head (it is a pumpkin) and the little old lady can finally talk to him!

Pumpkin House (Paper Cut Story)
This story is also from the Best of Dr. Jean: Puppets and Storytime by Jean Feldman.  Once again, due to copyright rules I can't tell you the exact story.  You will get the idea, though, as I cut the pumpkin house.  All you need is a piece of orange paper and a pair of scissors.

Step 1-the house and the chimney
Steps 2 & 3-the curved door and the special door for the cat
Step 4-windows for the birds
Step 5-the jack-o'-lantern
This week's Flannel Friday round-up is hosted by Mary at Miss Mary Liberry.  Make sure you check out all of the great Halloween submissions in the round-up and on the Flannel Friday Pinterest page!

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