Thursday, January 31, 2013

Flannel Friday-If You Like Your Eggs Scrambled

I will admit it-this is another flannelboard that started out as a joke.  It was my coworker's birthday on Monday and I told her that I would make her a flannelboard out of her favorite food (which is bacon).  Now, I don't know if you have every looked, but there really are not flannelboards or rhymes that use bacon.  I finally lucked out on the KCLS Tell Me a Story page.

The pieces were all made out of felt with thread details.  (I figured that the thread looked a little fancier since it was her birthday).  This flannelboard will work with any breakfast or food story time.  Personally, I can't wait to pair it with Flip Flap Jack.

If You Like Your Eggs Scrambled
(To the tune of If You're Happy and You Know It)

If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands.
If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands.
Yes, they’re yummy and they’re yellow
So you’ll be a happy fellow.
If you like your eggs scrambled, clap your hands.

If you like your eggs fried, jump up high.
If you like your eggs fried, jump up high.
Yes, they’re yummy and they’re yellow
So you’ll be a happy fellow
If you like your eggs fried, jump up high.

If you want bacon with your eggs, wiggle your legs.
If you want bacon with your eggs, wiggle your legs.
Yes, they’re yummy and they’re yellow
So you’ll be a happy fellow
If you want bacon with your eggs, wiggle your legs.
If you want toast instead, nod your head.
If you want toast instead, nod your head.
Yes, it's yummy and it's great,
So you'll be glad that you ate.
If you want toast instead, nod your head.
This week's round-up is hosted by Anne at So Tomorrow.  Even if you don't have a chance to post, stop by the round-up and add your location to her giant map in preparation for Flannel Friday's 2nd Birthday Extravaganza!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Singing with Kids

I realize that not everyone likes singing with kids.  In fact, despite my music major and background, I am one of those people who used to hate to sing in front of people.  Last Monday when I had a playdate with my nieces and nephews, I heard my husband say, "Wow, I have never heard Lisa sing before.  I can't believe that is what quieted Fallon's screaming."  (Fallon is my 5 month old niece.)  It made me start to think.  Then later in story time that week, I noticed that I was actually singing (where people could hear me, not just moving my lips).  How did I get to this point?

While these may not all work for you, here are some things that I have done over the past 12 years that may have gotten me to this point:

1.  Do you know any babies that you can hold?  Over the past 7 years, I have acquired 8 nieces and nephews and I see many of them multiple times a week.  I am constantly holding them, singing to them, playing with them, etc.  I have found that singing to a baby is kind of like our PAWS for Reading program (or a Reading to the Dogs program).  Babies really don't care what you sing or how you sing-they just like that you do it.  If you can't think of anything to try, I would start with Old MacDonald (because this song can really go on forever).  The name game is also fun (they like hearing their name and it is just funny).  Chances are if you can be a little silly in front of a baby, you can be a little silly in other areas of your life too (like story time).

2.  If you're still not ready to grab a microphone and perform, what about finding cds that fit your songs and taste to add as your story time accompaniment.? The thing that is important for this to work is to find music that goes slow enough for you to sing along with.  The kids will sing along if you sing, but if you are still shy, pass out lyrics sheets to the parents.  While you may get a few rolled eyes the first time, most will participate because what we are doing looks fun!  Plus, if you pick a song with actions, your audience will be looking at your hand motions and not your mouth.

Also, when in doubt, if you can mouth "watermelon" to any song and it looks like you are singing.
3.  Is there a music group that has you humming along when people aren't watching?  Chances are they fit your musical tastes and registers.  Most of us have to drive to work and can pop in a cd.  This is a good time to sing along where nobody else can hear you (you just may get some strange looks from other drivers if you pull off an air guitar).  Just as an example, Maroon 5 is my cd of choice (the singing isn't too high, the songs are catchy, and I can actually follow along to the words).  If they are on the radio, I find myself singing along.  While I am not going to sing their songs in story time, the more you do something (like singing), the more comfortable you get.

My best advice is to do what is most comfortable for you while not taking you totally out of your comfort zone. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Literacy Fun

Our branch is in the process of creating a post office early literacy center based on a posting from the ALSC blog a couple of months back.  Yesterday, I set up the first part of the center to clean up some of the mess by my desk.

As you can see, it is a table and a mailbox.  Over the past 24 hours, I have watched numerous kids playing "library book drop" by putting their dvds in the slot and pulling them out the side.  Then today, we had actual letters that kids had written on pieces of scrap paper.  It is amazing what kids will come up with!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Flannel Friday-Valentine Race

Okay, I realize that Kay at Storytime ABC's made this one last year, but it is so popular with our young ones that I am doing it again.  It is a fun rhyme to do, especially with the 2's and 3's.  The other bonus is that it is short.  There just aren't a lot of short Valentine's rhymes that the little ones will sit through.

Five little Valentines were having a race.
The first Valentine was frilly with lace.
The second Valentine had a silly face.
The third Valentine said, "I love you!"
The fourth Valentine said, "I do, too!"
The fifth Valentine was crafty as a fox,
Cause he ran the fastest to your Valentine box!"

I made all of the hearts out of fun foam, because I liked the details that I could add with puffy paint and glitter glue.  The eyes on the second heart are sticker eyes, because I just can't make silly eyes look that good.

Sarah is hosting the Mushy Gushy round-up this week.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mock Awards

This Monday's award announcement is like the Oscars of the library world.  I will admit to hoarding a stack of books the week or 2 before the announcement because they are ones that I think will win.  There's nothing like a shiny award seal or a display of winners.  So if you are like me and you just can't wait, here are some sites you may want to visit:

ALA Youth Media Awards Webcast
If you can't make it to Seattle to watch it live at 8 a.m. PT (or 11 a.m. ET), this is the next best thing.  If you are doing this, I would also recommend being logged into Twitter and following #ALAyma.  This is great if you can't write the titles fast enough (like me).

If you are looking for ways to come up with your own list of possible winners, start by looking at books that get multiple starred reviews.  Every November-December, the "Best of" lists are published.  I like to watch Publisher's Weekly, School Library Journal, Amazon, New York Times, Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards, and the National Book Awards.  Each brings a little something different to the table, from criticism to popularity.  Then watch the blogs.

  • Allen County Public Library (ACPL) has been running mock awards since 1997 and they tend to be right on or close.  They run many Mock Book Awards, from Sibert to Newbery.
  • In more recent years, the Heavy Medal blog appeared on the School Library Journal web site.  They provide a lot of book information, but also bring up concerns about the books. 
  • Well, if you have a Newbery blog, you need a Caldecott one too.  Calling Caldecott is run on The Horn Book web site.  What is fun here is that they let anyone vote!
  • While not a mock awards blog, Elizabeth Bird provides a lot of book information on her A Fuse 8 Production blog.  I like to follow her, because not only does she review books, she highlights all kinds of award winners and tells you about books coming out that have the potential to be hot.  Plus, she is extremely entertaining.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Fun with Polar Bear, Polar Bear

Today for our story time we did Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Bill Martin, Jr.  With our first group, I read the story as I normally do with the flannelboard and asked the kids what they thought each of the animals sounded like.  I don't know if you ever have tried this, but I got a lot of blank faces for most of the animals.  That's when I had an "Aha!" moment.  I had my iPad at work today for a meeting and pulled out my Musical Flashcards app that was originally suggested in a Flannel Friday post.  Many of the animals from Polar Bear, Polar Bear (minus the flamingo and walrus) and in the app.  First, I asked the kids what noises they think the animals might make.  Then, we listened to the noise on the iPad.  They had so much fun that they wanted to know what noise other animals made and we kept going.

This worked best with a small group.  With our 15 below temperature outside, we only had 13 kids in our second group and I think that is part of why this worked so well.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Flannel Friday-More Pizza Box Flannelboards

If you saw my post for the Storytime Swap, you will know that I bought a package of 50 pizza boxes which are just waiting for creative ideas to hit them.  This week I used up 4 more to make Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Bill Martin, Jr. for an early literacy program that we run called Play to Learn.  While I have made Polar Bear, Polar Bear in the past as a large flannelboard, I thought that it would work well with the smaller pizza box size.  Plus, the kids LOVE playing with the animals and making their own noises.

Once again, I pulled out my pizza boxes and used spray glue to adhere felt to the tops.  Darker colored felt worked much better than my last attempt (light green showed too much brown through it for my taste).  Plus, I thought that blue worked well with polar bears!  Most of the shapes are AccuCut dies with puffy paint details.

Polar bear, lion, and hippo
Flamingo, zebra, and snake
(Use a horse die cut for the zebra and give him stripes.)
Elephant, leopard, and peacock
(I had to run a clip art peacock for the pattern.)
Walrus and zookeeper
(The walrus is also a clip art pattern.)
With 4 sets of Polar Bear, Polar Bear, I am now down to 42 pizza boxes.  I expect that there will be more forthcoming!  I also used 1 pizza box to hold felt scraps less than 1/4 sheet.  That helped to clean up my felt box, but still kept those pieces around because they make great details (eyes, feet, etc.)
Katie at Storytime Secrets is hosting this week's round-up.  Have a great week!


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Flannel Friday-Five Little Polar Bears

I do a lot of work with 2 year olds, so I love anything that is a cumulative rhyme (counting ones work well with this).  They seem to follow along better and participate by shouting out what number we are on, which holds their attention.

Five Little Polar Bears

Five little polar bears, playing near the shore.
One tumbled in, and then there were four.

Four little polar bears swimming in the sea.
One chased a seal, and then there were three.

Three little polar bears, what shall we do?
One went swimming and then there were two.

Two little polar bears playing in the sun,
One took a nap and then there was one.

One little polar bear, not very old.
Where's my mom?  I’m hungry and cold.

To make your own polar bears like I did, I ran a bear AccuCut die through the machine with white felt.  I added googly eyes, because they are fun!

Today's bonus rhyme is Four Little Snowman.  We had such fun with it in story time today that I had to share.  The pictures are just laminated Microsoft Publisher clip art that are laminated.

Four Little Snowmen
Four little snowmen riding on a sled
One fell off and bumped his head.
Frosty called the doctor and the doctor said,
"No more snowmen riding on that sled!"
(Continue in this fashion until you get to zero.)

The Flannel Friday round-up this week is hosted by Kay at Storytime ABC's (and it is her 100th post)!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Flannel Friday Round-Up

Happy 2013!  We have a great round-up today.

A big Flannel Friday welcome goes out to our newbies Lisa and Jen!

Lisa has created a flannel All You Need for a Snowman magic trick to go with Alice Schertle's book.  Honestly, I would love my own magic bag.

Jen at Jen in the Library brings us the Australian version of A-Hunting We Will Go.  This would be a great addition to any animal or multicultural story time.


Are you looking for some new props?  Andrea created food chain stacking cups.  While they are great for story time, I can also see them fitting Common Core Standards.  I always like it when I can inject some nonfiction into story time.

You have 11 months to get ready for Thanksgiving!  Sarah at Read Rabbit Read presents Five Little Pumpkin Pies in the Bakery Shop.

Bridget at What is Bridget Reading? was inspired by a past post and recreated Conejito by Margaret Read MacDonald.  I love the cute animals (and the mommy bunny with glasses is awesome).

I love any post that uses the words "favorite" and "2012".  Katie at Story Time Secrets shares her Favorite Story Time Props of 2012.  This post is definitely a "keeper" because she has some that I never thought of before.

Katie brings us Froggy se viste or Froggy Gets Dressed.  I know that this is a big preschool favorite up here where we get snow and have to wear many layers.  To make it easier to bring Spanish to your programs, she even includes a pattern.

If you are working on your winter story time flannelboards, you will want to check out Linda at Notes from the Story Room with her version of There Was a Little Penguin.  It's almost as if she knew that I have been assembling penguins for story time today!

Have you ever held a flannelboard workshop?  Lucy at In the Children's Room tells us about one that she and Katie from Storytime Secrets held.


Were you a part of the first ever Storytime Swap?  If not, you will definitely want to check out some of the posts below (and participate next time).

Anne at So Tomorrow created more shadow puppets to tell the story of Arthur's Nose.  I can see a lot of us pulling out our overhead projectors to create this fun puppet show!

Ann has a guest post up on Storytime ABC's with her props for Mouse Count.  It is really cute and I can see a lot of us putting one together.

Katie B. also has a guest post up on Storytime ABC's with her flannelized version of Five Pairs of Socks.  You will want to check this one out as Katie also created a flannel washing machine!

I made Pete the Cat with a twist here at Libraryland.  Pete has his very own pizza box flannelboard so kids can play with him.  Plus, I have 47 more pizza boxes to go so I see a lot of future pizza box flannelboards.

Kay at Storytime ABC's (and the creator of the Storytime Swap) created a really neat felt memory game out of shapes and colors.  It can be a game, a flannelboard, or even adapted to a cookie story time.  This one has the potential to take us in many more directions (really, can't you just see alphabet cookies???).

Amy at Catch the Possibilities retells Mouse Paint with props.  Honestly, what is cooler than props?  I can't wait to make this one myself!

I will admit it-I shamelessly "borrowed" this one from the Storytime Swap page.  Valley Storytime posted their flannelized version of "The Fish with the Deep Sea Smile" by Margaret Wise Brown.


Want to know more about Flannel Friday?  Check out the offical blog or Pinterest page

Upcoming dates to mark on your calendar include:
  • 1/25/13 is the Valentine's Extravaganza
  • 3/1/13 is the Dig Into Reading Summer Reading Extravaganza
  • 3/15/13 is the Flannel Friday Birthday Extravaganza

Storytime Swap

For our first ever Storytime Swap, I decided to make Pete the Cat with a twist.  We have a family literacy program coming up in March and I was looking for ways to make flannelboards more accessible.  I saw somewhere online where a teacher created pizza box flannelboards and my Pete the Cat idea was born.

I started off with a 10x10 pizza box.  You can try asking your local pizza places for empty boxes or you can buy them in bulk at Gordon Food Service.  I now have 47 empty pizza boxes waiting for a fun idea.  I cut a piece of felt to fit the top of the box and used Tacky spray glue to attach it.  Next time I would probably use a darker color as the flannel background.

Next, I took a pattern that I created in April and shrunk it down to fit the 10 inch pizza box.  (If you would like your own pattern, please send me a message.)
Here is Pete the Cat.

Oops, he stepped in strawberries and now has red shoes. 
(If you read the story, he also has white, brown, and blue shoes.)
Here is Pete with his four groovy buttons.
Pete's ready for a little baseball coming in his new book         
Pete the Cat: Play Ball (February 2013).
All of these cool costumes are stored in plastic baggies inside the pizza box.  I am running a little behind on getting this to the post office, so my swap partner will get this sometime next week.
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