Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Flannel Friday: 4th Anniversary Guest Post Palooza...Flannel Board Table by Grace





Happy 4th Anniversary to Flannel Friday! To celebrate, we're having a Guest Post Palooza and I have the honor of hosting Grace Smart and her very first Flannel Friday post. Without further ado, here's Grace.


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Flannel Board Table
I have been doing Story Time for 2 years as an assistant to the Youth Services Librarian, and have created dozens of flannel boards during that time to use in StoryTime. I have read on other blogs that some librarians allow their young patrons to get up and interact with their flannel boards DURING STORYTIME. This seems like a great way to engage the kids, but unfortunately we have too many children attending for this to be practical. Nonetheless, I think flannel boards are a great early literacy tool and I wanted to find a way to get our flannels into the hands of our young patrons.

I pondered this idea for a good while, until one day my coworker came across this post by Lisa M. Shaia on Thrive After Three.  

I immediately knew that this was something I wanted to do, so I started brainstorming with my coworkers! We were able to find a flannel table cover for about $10. It’s a green table cover for card games with elastic around the edges, and it was a perfect fit for the small round tables already in our children’s area. We ordered two so that we could switch them out and clean them when necessary. (Hopefully they will hold up in a washing machine.) Once we had the flannel cover, I started working on the first flannel board table for our children’s area. I created the cars and trucks by tracing the outlines of clipart. The roads are simply rectangles of different lengths and sizes (with painted stripes down the middle).  I made the road pieces all different sizes with corners and straight pieces so the kids can rearrange and interact with them.  I used fabric paint for all of the details on all the pieces from tires to road signs and more.

Since this activity seemed like the perfect opportunity to reinforce the early literacy concepts that we promote during each and every StoryTime, I created information cards with talking points for the parents. These I laminated so they would last as long as possible.

Here is my first Flannel Board Table, “Driving Around Town”.




This has been out in the children’s area for over a month. We have found this to be very successful.  All the pieces have been rearranged at the end of each day! And we have had many compliments from parents about this activity.  All of the pieces have held up well at this point even though the roads are starting to be a little wrinkled. I am working on a few new sets of flannels so that I can swap these out in the future to keep things interesting.  Overall, “Driving Around Town” has been a really successful interactive flannel experience for our library.

Thank you, Bridget, for hosting!

Grace Smart
Denton Public Library

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Thank you, Grace, for sharing this great idea with us! 

Mollie is hosting the roundup this week.

Important Links:
Follow Flannel Friday on Twitter with the hashtag #flannelstorytime.
Our March/April Flannel Friday Fairy Godmother is Mollie.   

10 comments:

Kathryn said...

Such a fun and helpful post! Your felt pieces are great and I'm sure it helps that it's a nice quiet activity...well, now that I think about boys and car noises...not so quiet. Ha!! But definitely lot's of fun!!

Julie Crabb said...

So fantastic Grace! Where did you find the green table cover? I currently do a magnetic literacy station and I think I will try out some roads next month!

Lindsey said...

I want to do this sooooo bad! I think it would be hard to tear the kids away. Thanks so much for sharing!

Sharon H said...

Grace, your work is beautiful!! I hope you'll think about creating your own storytime blog. it's pretty handy to have!!

Calliope said...

What a wonderful idea for an interactive program! Can you please tell me where you found the table cover? I would love to do something similar at our library.

Jane said...

Fantastic work - the tables are gaining in popularity and cars and trucks are always a favorite. Love the conversation starter cards ~ jane

itsybitsymom said...

So great! I wish we had room to do this! Absolutlely adodrable, I hope you share your other table ideas!

Grace Smart said...

Thank you all for the positive comments. There are a few questions about the felt table cover. We found these on a site that sells card game supplies, i.e. poker supplies. I went back to look at it and they don't have the same size or price anymore, unfortunately. You can probably find a better price somewhere else, or even make your own with a few yards of felt and some elastic! Here is the website just in case: https://sevennotrump.com

Andrea said...

Great learning through play station! Thanks for sharing.

Stephanie@Fairday's Blog said...

This is such a cool idea. I have never used flannel boards- and this is something I can work on setting up for my K and 1 students. There are so many possibilities. Thanks for sharing this with us!