Tag Archives: storytime ninja

Ask a Storytime Ninja: Lightning Round – Opening Songs for Baby, Toddler and PreK Storytime

Here’s our newest Lightning Round question! These questions are posed to all of our ninjas instead of just our featured monthly ones and are meant to be quick and efficient responses to some interesting inquiries. Here’s our question for this week:

 

lighnting_round

 

The Question:

 

“”What are good songs or chants for hello and goodbye songs for the following age groups:
Lapsit – 2 months to 18 months
Toddler Time – 18 months to 3 years
Story Hour – 3 years to 5 years”

 

The Answers:

 

From Michelle M. (@mmlibrarian):

 

My song choices are for Lapsit and Toddler Time: Hello Everyone
 
Hello Everyone, and how are you? How are you? How are you? (wave baby’s hand)
Hello everyone and how are you? How are you today?
I am fine, I am fine and I hope that you are too (point to self and then point to child).

 

From Soraya S. (@vivalosbooks):

 
I mostly do all age, family storytimes but I think these would work for 3-5 for sure and probably toddler as well:
 
Hello Song in Sign Language
I learned this from Jbrary and love it! Here’s the YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?list=PLcw3Y8sV0xpuV8woqMSnY2MpjuYfPERja&v=tKCGF2hvq3I
Hello Song
 
And then we do a wake up song with Jim Gill’s Can’t Wait to Celebrate

 

From Jaime C.:

 

For babytime I use three songs, all from Mother Goose on the Loose by Besty Cohent Diamond:
 
Hello Everybody:
Hello everybody yes indeed, yes indeed, yes indeed (wave baby’s hands)
Hello everybody yes indeed, yes indeed my darling (wave baby’s hands)
 
Clap Clap Clap Your Hands:
Clap, clap, clap your hands, clap your hands together (clap baby’s hands x2)
Stomp, stomp, stomp your feet, stomp your feet together (stomp baby’s feet x2)
Wave, wave, wave your arms, wave your arms together (wave baby’s hands x2)
Nod, nod, nod your head, nod your head together (I normally recommend kind of bobbing with baby x2)
Sway, sway, sway and sway together (sway with baby x2)
 
See My Fingers Dance and Play:
See my fingers dance and play, fingers dance for me today (wiggle baby’s fingers)
See my ten toes dance and play, ten toes dance for me today (wiggle baby’s toes)
 
For toddler time I use two songs and one fingerplay:
 
Shake Your Sillies Out by Jim Gill
These Are My Glasses by Laurie Berkner
I Wiggle My Fingers Fingerplay:
I wiggle my fingers,
I wiggle my toes,
I wiggle my shoulders,
I wiggle my nose.
Now no more wiggles
Are left in me,
So I can sit as still as can be.
 
Have any songs you use that weren’t listed? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

Ask a Storytime Ninja: Lightning Round – Endangered Animals & Tigers Storytime

This is our first Lightning Round of the month! These questions are posed to all of our ninjas instead of just our featured monthly ones and are meant to be quick and efficient responses to some interesting inquiries. Here’s our question for this week:

 

lighnting_round

 

The Question:

 

“Do you have any book recommendations for an endangered animals storytime for 3 – 6 year olds? Especially ones featuring tigers?”

 

The Answers:

 

From Natasha F.C. (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Natasha-Forrester-Librarian/201079469997932):

 

Two of my favorite tiger books are It’s a Tiger by David LaRochelle and Augustus and His Smile by Catherine Rayner. It’s a Tiger would be great for talking about how people are scared of tigers which can make them more likely to not worry about them, and Augustus and His Smile revels in the natural world, including Augustus taking a swim.

 

It could also be fun to use a book like Actual Size and pick out animals that are endangered (some gorillas, some crocodiles, etc.).

 

From Michelle M. (@mmlibrarian):

 

I like It’s a Tiger by David LaRochelle.

 

From Bridget W. (@bridgetrwilson, http://whatisbridgetreading.blogspot.com/):

 

Moon Bear by Barbara Guiberson
Almost Gone: The World’s Rarest Animals by Steve Jenkins
The race to save the Lord God Bird by Phillip Hoose
Can We Save the Tiger? by Martin Jenkins
Roly Poly Pangolin by Anna Dewdney
Little Mist by Angela McAllister (features red pandas, snow leopards, & moon bears)

 

Once a Mouse by Marcia Brown
It’s a Tiger by David LaRochelle
Read to Tiger by S. J. Fore
Conejito by Margaret Read MacDonald

 

From Sue J.:

 

Eric Carle’s Panda Bear, Panda Bear, what do you see?

 

Thanks for all the great responses everyone! Do you have any of your own? We’d love to hear about them in the comments!

Ask a Storytime Ninja: Lightning Round – Mother’s Day/Father’s Day Storytime?

Here’s our next Ask a Storytime Ninja Lightning Round for the month of May! These questions are posed to all of our ninjas instead of just our featured monthly ones and are meant to be quick and efficient responses to some interesting inquiries. Here’s our question for this week:

 

lighnting_round

 

The Question:

 

“Do you do Mother’s Day/Father’s Day storytime themes or is it better to avoid since so many kids may be from single-parent families, raised by grandparents, or have 2 moms/dads? My library serves an urban population so we see more single parents & grandparents raising kids than in suburban branches.”

 

The Answers:

 

From Tess P. (@tess1144, www.inclusiveearlyliteracy.wordpress.com):

 

Great question! My answer: it depends. For holidays like this Mother’s Day, I tend to not make a big deal out of it. If I feel like it, I might read, Mother, Mother I Want Another, Llama, Llama, Red Pajama or Hooray for Fish but that would be it I think and I don’t think I would ever advertise or announce it as a special Mother’s Day storytime. That being said, I read those stories at different times throughout the year too because I like them, not because they feature moms. Also, a whole lot of kids who come to my storytime are with their (wonderful) nannies, and I have several dads and grandparents and one aunt too so I honestly don’t see the need to give the moms any special recognition on this day more than any other day. They should all be commended for getting out the door and down to the library right? Of course we do have a display for people who want to take out the books about Mother’s Day (same goes for Valentines and all the other holidays, religious and secular).

 

From Abby J. (@abbylibrarian, http://www.abbythelibrarian.com):

 

We do not do Mother’s Day/Father’s Day themes, but it may be because we take a programming break in May, so we’d only be able to do Father’s Day and that’s kind of one-sided. Maybe instead of Mother’s Day/Father’s Day, those weeks might be good times to do “Family” or “Love” or similar storytime themes.

 

From Meg S. (@theemegnificent, missmegsstorytime.com):

 

I think you really have to gauge your community–if you see a lot of single parents or grandparents as main caregivers than maybe it is best to avoid it. I typically don’t do Mothers or Father’s Day stuff but was once asked to do a Mother’s Day theme at storytime. In that case (and because I knew most of my regulars) I decided to focus more on families than specifically moms or dads.

 

From Natalie K.:

 

We have programs for both holidays, but I make sure to talk about grandparents, aunts, and uncles in my storytimes. This way, no one feels too left out.

 

From Tabin C.:

 

I do both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, and not simply because it’s two less themes I have to make up (yay!). It’s because I have no biological children, but I am a part-time parent. When something happens to a child’s parents, other people step up and step in. I’ve seen Shrek a gazillion times, have watched the most boring children’s sporting events ever, received calls asking, “Can I come over?” (translation: “Mom is making me do chores.”), figured out mission projects, state projects, and even famously enacted a whole house time out in which I screamed, “Everyone is going to their rooms, including me!!!”
 
In other words, I deserve acknowledgement. Matter of fact, I deserve more than that, which is why for Mother’s Day I asked for, and received, a 55 inch Samsung plasma TV. So, I figure a few nice stories like “Little Miss Spider” and “Froggy’s Day with Daddy” is not too much to ask out of the library. (Unless you want to send me a 3-D TV…)

 

Thanks for the responses everyone! Have any of your own? Comment below! We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Ask a Storytime Ninja: Lightning Round – Keeping Storytime Fresh

Here’s our first Ask a Storytime Ninja Lightning Round for the month of May! These questions are posed to all of our ninjas instead of just our featured monthly ones and are meant to be quick and efficient responses to some interesting inquiries. Here’s our question for this week:

 

lighnting_round

 

The Question:

 

“When do you change up your storytime routine, if at all? I’ve been doing pretty much the same opening/closing/etc. for over 3 years now, and for me, it’s gotten pretty stale. However, the kids and adults still love it, so I’m hesitant to change something. Any advice?”

 

The Answers:

 

From Kendra J. (@klmpeace, www.klmpeace.wordpress.com):

 

I know it is time to change things up when they start feeling stale to me. You want to make sure you are enthusiastic about storytime and if things start to feel boring to you, the kids are going to pick up on that. That being said, I’ve kept a few things the same for the last 6 years. Opening and closing routines will stay the same for at least a full storytime season, but with the exception of “This is Big” for a transition rhyme, all the songs and activities in the meat of the storytime change almost every week. I have an unofficial rotating list of songs and activities that families who are with me for the whole storytime session and beyond will know well but things still stay fresh for me.

Moral of the story, if it’s stale, freshen it up. They will love anything you love, promise.

 

From Miss Sue (Libraryvillage.blogspot.com):

 

It happens to the best of us! I wouldn’t change everything at once, especially since your kids are still loving the routine (what kid doesn’t?). Try a new song in the middle, learn to play simple songs on the ukulele (what I did), bring in a new puppet…whatever! Just changing one thing will give you a little adrenaline rush without confusing the kids. I wouldn’t change a second thing until that first thing is firmly rooted in your story time. Routine is good – but a little change can freshen how you approach story time.

 

From Anne C. (@sotomorrow, sotomorrowblog.com):

 

Change it, change it, change it! BUT only change a part of it. I change about 25-30% of my opening and closing routines each 7-week session. That lives me enough familiarity for my families but a big enough change that I don’t feel bored or stifled. Plus it adds to my repertoire! If you don’t do sessions or do storytime continuously throughout the year, perhaps switch one rhyme out every month for a new one. If you get requests to bring a song back, you can always work it in somewhere else in the program every once in a while.

 

From Natasha FC. (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Natasha-Forrester-Librarian/201079469997932):

 

Keeping the same routine for opening and closing can get old for the provider, but it can be a great crowd management tool to get kids ready to settle in for storytime and a comfort to families that aren’t able to make it every week but come often enough to recognize what’s happening. It’s also developmentally appropriate to give kids those cues so they know what is happening next. Having said that, I still alter mine on occasion to keep things fresh for me, but I try to a.) make changes after a storytime break (I started taking a month off each quarter to refresh and prep for the next three-month session), and/or b.) make changes one at a time (for example if you do three songs at the beginning, keep the first one and change the second one one week, then the third one a few weeks later, and so on, so there is some routine continuation.

 

Thanks for the responses everyone! Have any of your own? Comment below! We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Ask a Storytime Ninja: Lightning Round – School Age Programming!

Time for round two of our Ask a Storytime Ninja Lightning Round! These questions are posed to all of our ninjas instead of just our featured monthly ones and are meant to be quick and efficient responses to some interesting inquiries. Here’s our question for the week:

 

lighnting_round

 

The Question:

 

“I am a new youth services librarian who trained to be an academic librarian. We just started a school age story time at our libraries and I am really struggling to find songs or transition activities that the kids don’t think is babyish. Does anyone have any suggestions or maybe a link to a blog you’ve done on how you conduct school age story times?”

 

The Answers:

 

From Jennie R. (@kidsilkhaze, www.jenrothschild.com):

 

Here’s where I use all the songs I learned at summer camp. In general, Button Factory, Boom Chicka Boom, The Other Day I Saw a Bear, and Little Bunny Foo Foo always go over well! Camp Songs (https://campsongs.wordpress.com/) is a great site to look up all the words.

 

From Angela R. (@annavalley, https://www.facebook.com/AVRLibrary):

 

Naomi Baltuck’s “Crazy Gibberish” has some great stuff for school-age kids. http://www.naomibaltuck.com/Npages/products.html Songs & chants and storytelling activities that are fun to do & easy to learn.

 

From Anita V.:

 

The School Age Story Time is a good time to build companion themes with fiction and nonfiction pairings, such as Amelia Bedelia and books from the jokes and riddles section of the library. Beginning readers are a great bridge into chapter books, if you are building a weekly audience, so that you could work a few chapters from one of the Magic Tree house series and match a nonfiction for the time period for details. Time to create a short story, draw an illustration of the story or write a poem could now be used in place of a craft, with time to share via a media projector, (or other media with parental permissions). Working with the Dewey Rap from is a great way to gain some comfort with the nonfiction arrangement of your library. Bring out the maracas, rewing and play along.

 

From Soraya S. (@vivalosbooks):

 

If I’m doing a school visit to a specific age group, I tend to do a storytime with a little more plot involved for K-2nd. Fractured fairytales are a must (Leah Wilcox, Corey Schwartz) and some more challenging songs (Knuckles Knees, Boom Chicka Boom) and I’ll try to find an illustrative non-fiction book to tie into the theme. For 3rd-5th I do non-fiction book talks: Egyptology, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Oceanography and then find a simple activity or craft to do if time allows.

 

For our school age program in the branch though, we pick one non-fiction theme to learn about and a more detailed hands on activity instead of a storytime. Mad Science is my absolute favorite where I pick an experiment for the week, we learn the science behind the project in simple terms, I conduct a large scale version of the experiment and then the kids get to do their own mini version. It’s a blast, sometimes literally! We also do Super Duper Craft Club, Lego Club, Jedi Academy, Inventors Club, all sorts of great subjects.