Welcome to our weekly installment of Sharing the Storytime Joy!
Today's post is by Dawn, a children's librarian at the Grabill Branch.
Once a month I visit the Rainbow Childcare in Leo. I love visiting Miss Marjo's class and her other preschool friends. In September I started with some new students and I tried to keep storytime simple and help get everyone in the rhythm of how my visits work and what I expect. I know librarians get a bad rap for shushing people, but I like a lot of interaction while I'm doing storytime and I even encourage kids to talk while I read.
Here are two books we read that work perfectly for my kind of kid/librarian interaction:
Do Pigs Have Stripes?
By Melanie Walsh
This one is a natural! Each page has a bold, goofy picture with a question similar to the title. Do pigs have stripes? Of course not! Kids love yelling out "No" or making guesses about what animal is partially pictured. It also works great for extending thinking. Does a mouse have a green spiky tail? No! Some kids say it's an alligator and some guess crocodile. Well, what letter will we expect to see at the beginning of the word if it says 'alligator'? How about if it says 'crocodile'? See how we're practicing letter knowledge? On the page with the elephant feet that asks "Are these the feet of a pussy cat?" most kids will guess elephant without hesitation. But why? I ask them to tell me WHY they think it's an elephant. Some say the feet look big. Some say they're grey like an elephant. It gets them thinking about how we categorize things and how we use background knowledge when we read.
Bear and Hare: Where's Bear?
By Emily Gravett
This is a simple story about two friends playing hide and seek and one friend, Bear, who always chooses terrible spots to hide. Preschoolers can relate. The great part about using this for a read aloud is that everyone gets lots of counting practice. We count along with Hare then all say "Where's Bear?" They laugh at the silly places Bear tries to hide and are honestly concerned when Bear can't find Hare. It's short, sweet, and provides lots of places for verbal interaction.
Preschool storytime is one of my favorite parts of my job and these books always bring smiles AND conversation. Fun for everyone!