Category Archives: Free Training Resources

Free Resource You Should Know About: Supercharged Storytimes



Hey, hey! Another free resource!! Woot!


Webjunction has made Supercharged Storytimes resources available to all of you, for free. Take advantage of this opportunity to learn more about Project VIEWS2 from the University of Washington’s iSchool and ways you can supercharge your storytimes.


Check out this announcement for all the links and details. The Supercharged Library has a ton of resources for your collections and programs. You can check out the research here. And, most exciting of all, check out the Supercharged Storytimes webinar slides and orientation outline.


There’s a lot to explore! Happy reading!



Local Chapter Possibilities: Storytime Sharing Extravaganza!

Now that the news is out about local chapters (HOORAY!!), I wanted to share an example of something your local chapters could organize. Below is the invitation I sent out to contacts in my area for a regional storytime providers (and wannabees) meetup. We had the first one in September and it was so successful we decided to make it a regular thing.


If you’d like to see something like this in your area, contact your local chapter leader. Don’t see a chapter for your state? Maybe you’d like to be the leader!? Send us an email at storytimeunderground at gmail and let us know!


See how much fun we had?!


Here’s the invite. If you’re in the Puget Sound area, we’d love for you to join us!



Storytime Sharing Extravaganza!!


You’re Invited!



All storytime presenters and storytime presenter wannabees! Pass this on!



Friday, January 22nd, 3:30-5:30 at Moore Branch of Tacoma Public Library



Share, and learn, from other storytime providers in the Puget Sound area. Alex, from Pierce County, will share ways to effectively delivery early literacy tips in storytime. Bring something for an activity showcase (optional) and be prepared to have a lot of fun! Light refreshments will be provided.



Please let me know if you plan to attend. Send an email to with 1 to 3 of your favorite artists, albums, rhymes, or songs to use in storytime. I’ll compile suggestions for another take home list.

SU Local Chapters in All Their Glory!

The joint chiefs are ecstatic! We’re thrilled! We’re filled with joy and jubilation! You guys, today we are expanding Storytime Underground into the real world with…

Local Chapters!





SU is in love with peer to peer learning and raising up leaders. Here on the blog and in the Facebook group, we’ve encouraged you to share your ideas, ask questions, and learn from each other. SO MUCH powerful good has come from this so far, and now we’d like to take it a step further by calling on you all to meet!


In real life!


With coffee and alcohol and stuff!


We want you to meet your new best friend, to discover a song you didn’t know before, to rant and cry with people who understand. We want you to go out and have wild times or stay in and lounge.


We want you to have fun, learn, and connect with the people in your area who are already in touch with what SU is all about.


That’s what local chapters are about, but here’s what they’re not.


Chapters will not be affiliated with your state library organizations. Although we embrace any overlap that may occur, SU local chapters will not require membership of any kind. Instead, you’ll just communicate with your chapter leader to get into the loop for meetings.


We want you to learn from each other and network, but meetings do not have to be strictly professional. We will make some suggestions about the kinds of events you can throw, but your meetings can be as simple as going for a hike or meeting for a drink.


Still with me? Want to get involved?


Getting started is easy! Up top, you’ll find a new tab that says “SU local chapters.” Just send a message to the leader listed in your state for information about how your chapter will be communicating. Your leader will connect you with the group.


That’s it!


If you don’t see your state listed yet, don’t dismay. We’re adding people as we’re able to vet them and hope to have a chapter in most states eventually.


Now get together and party!


In January, the joint chiefs would love to see…

Guerrilla Storytimes!

Check out our shiny kit here.

Cue endless dance party!




Resource Depot: The Importance of Play



“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.”
– Fred Rogers

This week, we’re bringing you resources to build a deeper understanding of play and its importance to early learning.


Early Literacy Beyond Circle Time- Integrating Language & Literacy into Play, by Melissa Depper and Laurie Anne Armstrong

Our beloved Mel and the brilliant Laurie Anne Armstrong showcase powerful books for storytime and also discuss related activities to boost learning through play.

The Power of Playful Learning in Early Education: How Guided Play Sparks Social and Academic Outcomes by Kathy Hirsh-Pasek

Do you include a playtime in your storytimes or offer other play-based preschool programs? Kathy Hirsh-Pasek will demonstrate how you can set up guided play activities and provide the scaffolding children need to build knowledge and language.

Must-Read Blog Posts

Storytiming: Story Dictation

Cate talks about letting children be the leaders in dramatic play and quotes one really amazing author and teacher. Imagine letting children tell a story with puppets, writing down the story, reading it back to them, and also being able to use what you wrote to help a child realize that the words he speaks can be found on pages, too!

Sturdy for Common Things: The Picture Show

This post is everything! It’s playing and writing and talking, it’s social and narrative skills, and it’s awesome!

Reading with Red: Mail time!
Please read all of Brooke’s early literacy center posts, but especially this one where children wrote to their favorite characters and then those characters wrote back. Dramatic play and writing, for the win!
Don’t forget to submit the link if you watch a webinar! You’ll get a new shiny badge!

Free Training Resource: Birth to Five Videos from Baltimore County Public Library

Are you looking for a quick refresher in the five early literacy practices? Do you have staff who could use an introduction to the concepts and parent messages in Every Child Ready to Read® @ your library® 2nd edition? Or, perhaps, you have parents and caregivers at your library with whom you’d like to share a brief video or two of real families–every age, shape, color, etc.–doing fun early literacy activities?


You are in luck, because Baltimore County Public Library created a suite of 6 videos that do just that! The first video in the set, embedded below, provides an introduction to the five practices, with the remaining videos each tackling a practice more in depth. But rest assured–the longest of the videos only clocks in at 3:20. It would take you under 17 minutes to watch them all–a brief investment for a great overview of the five practices.


So bookmark these videos if you can’t watch or share them now, because they’re worth coming back to–even if it’s just to give yourself a reminder of parent messages to share in storytime.


Thanks, Baltimore County Public Library, for creating such a great, accessible resource!