Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Is That Wise Pig? by Jan Thomas

Mouse, Cow, and Pig are all making soup. It's going well until Pig wants to add some unusual ingredients to the pot.

Thoughts: Too fun! This will be a great addition to my soup storytime. It would also pair well with 10 Hungry Rabbits by Anita Lobel and Ten Hungry Pigs by Derek Anderson. 

Themes: Pigs, Soup, Vegetables, Cooking

Beach Lane Books, 2016

Monday, October 29, 2018

Warning! Do Not Touch! by Tim Warnes

Mole and his friend the lumpy bumpy thing find first a rabbit and then a hat. THe hat comes with its own label (Warning! Do Not Touch!) and soon they have 100 rabbits running riot. Quick thinking gets rid of the rabbits. Then the lumpy bumpy thing finds a  stick (wand) with its own label. But that's another story.

Thoughts: This is a fun story. Mole's labels are interesting and helpful for kids learning to read. I can't wait to use this book in storytime.

Themes: Friendship, Moles, Alligators, Rabbits, Magic, Mishaps

Tiger Tales, 2016

Friday, October 26, 2018

Flannel Friday: Shark Finger Puppets

I was inspired by several Flannel Friday posts (Storytime Katie, Sunflower Storytime, and Adventures in Storytime) to make these shark finger puppets. The pattern is from Repeat Crafter Me. Sharks are always fun and these puppets really added something special to my shark storytime.

Important Links:
Flannel Friday Blog/Website
Flannel Friday Tumblr
Flannel Friday Pinterest
Flannel Friday Facebook Group

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Under a Pig Tree: A History of the Noble Fruit, a Mixed-Up Book by Margie Palatini

Pig or fig? That is the question.

Thoughts: Hilarious! The intrusive author is great and just adds to the hilarity. I love sharing this book with 1st and 2nd grade students when I read at my local elementary schools.

Themes: Pigs, Elementary

Illustrated by Chuck Groenink. Abrams, 2015

Monday, October 22, 2018

Here Comes the Tooth Fairy Cat by Deborah Underwood

The cat who wants to replace the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus is back. His target this time is the tooth fairy.

Thoughts: Cat is such a hilarious character. For someone (a cat) who doesn't talk, he expresses himself well and with pizzazz. The illustrations are soft colored with great use of white space.

Themes: Cats, Teeth

Illustrated by Claudia Rueda. Dial, 2015.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Flannel Friday: Find the Owl

I borrowed this idea from Emily over at Literary Hoots. For this set I made the trees, but borrowed the owls from my set of felt owls. I found a template for the trunk and free-handed the leaves. My kids can spot the bulge of something underneath so I put an owl in each tree and we look for a specific one.

Important Links:
Flannel Friday Blog/Website
Flannel Friday Tumblr
Flannel Friday Pinterest
Flannel Friday Facebook Group

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Where's Walrus and Penguin? by Stephen Savage

Walrus from Where's Walrus has a new friend Penguin. They decide to make a break from the zoo. As before, they lead the zookeeper on a merry chase.

Thoughts: I love interactive picture books, especially ones that have the readers looking for something. I can't wait to this book in storytime.

Themes: Interactive, Wordless, Zoo

Scholastic, 2015

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Life Size Pac-Man for Teens

In 2016, I started seeing some posts about Life Size Pac-Man on some librarian groups on Facebook. I'm always up for a new life size game idea and this one looked easy to do. I did a little more research via those Facebook groups and Pinterest and then planned my first Life Size Pac-Man Event.

I originally used Mega Blocks for both the Pac-Dots and the power pellets. I decided they didn't work well and have since used cut up pool noodles for Pac-Dots and Mega Blocks for the power pellets only. Game play varies every time I host it. Given the size of the room I use, we only have three ghosts instead of four. As we play, the first ghost becomes Pac-Man after the first player dies and so on.

Sources of Inspiration:
Casey at Teen Services Underground Blog
The Jolly Rogers Young Women Blog
Youth Group Collective
The Meta Picture
If You Loved...
Kim Edsell on the Storytime Underground Facebook Group
Tales from the Nerdy
Teen Services Underground Facebook Group

Monday, October 15, 2018

8: An Animal Alphabet by Elisha Cooper

I believe the title says it all--an animal alphabet with a twist...look for the eight on each page.

Thoughts: Love, love, love this book. It works on so many levels. I'm adding it to my alphabet storytime. The illustrations are great. It was hard to pick a favorite. The "Did You Know?" section at the end is fabulous.

Themes: Alphabet, Animals, Numbers

Orchard Books, 2015

Friday, October 12, 2018

Flannel Friday: One Little Owl

I totally borrowed this idea from Tara over at Storytime with Miss Tara and Friends. To make the tree big enough, I had to visit a fabric store and buy felt by the yard. I glued two pieeces together to mke it less flimsy. I borrowed the owls from my set of felt owls. I made the squirrels and crows special. I don't really sing the song so much as I recite it.

Important Links:
Flannel Friday Blog/Website
Flannel Friday Tumblr
Flannel Friday Pinterest
Flannel Friday Facebook Group

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Teen Craft Programs

My teens enjoy crafts, but  lot of the ideas I find seem to appeal more to girls than guys. Duct tape and origami are two of my favorite crafty things to do with teens. Easy set up and lots of fun. Here are a few craft programs I've held in the last two years.

Upcycled Crafts 
Decorative Jars (clean/empty glass jars, scrapbook paper, scissors, brushes, Mod Podge, ribbon, hot glue gun)
Etched CD Wall Art (old CDs, black craft paint, brushes, pencils, needles/paperclips)
Dog Toys & T-Shirt Tote Bags (old t-shirts, scissors)

Duct Tape Creations
Sources: Duct Tape Mania by Amanda Formaro; Got Tape? Roll Out the Fun with Duct Tape by Ellie Schidermayer; Tape It & Make More: 101 More Duct Tape Activities by Richela Fabian Morgan; The Duct Tape Book: 25 Projects to Make with Duct Tape by Jolie Dobson; and Duct Tape Animals by Carolyn Bernhardt

I pulled some easy project ideas from a couple of the books and had the rest on display for inspiration.

Projects: coasters, wallet, friendship bracelet, light switch cover, flowers, and bookmarks.

Supplies: duct tape, scissors, rulers, light switch covers, un-sharpened pencils, headbands, embroidery floss, Vaseline (to remove stickiness from scissors) and paper towels.

Summer Craft Night
Button Bracelets (buttons, embroidery floss, scissors)
Origami (origami paper & patterns from Origami Fun)
Cup & Ball Toys (small paper cups, masking tape, string/yarn)
Dancing Button String (big buttons, string)

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

What Pet Should I Get? by Dr. Seuss

Dog, cat, bird, rabbit, fish--what pet should they get?

Thoughts: A fun, energetic jaunt to the pet store. But the question is what pet did they get? The story doesn't say and the illustration only shows eyes. I love the open-ended ending. This book would make a great art and/or writing project after reading.

Themes: Pets

Random House, 2015

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Teen Chocolate Wars/Games

I was inspired by Kelly Jensen at Field Acquisitions (here & here), Ms. Kelly at the Library, and Jenni.

I've done this event three times.

The first time we did the following: chocolate pictionary, M&M's sorting, identify the chocolate, whopper races, and Hershey Kiss races.

The second time, I added a chocolate memory game (thanks, Pinterest!) and chocolate tasting, but dropped identify the chocolate.

The third time I added a chocolate toss and a M&M relay.

The Whopper race is the most fun and I'm always looking for new games to add.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Prince of a Frog by Jackie Urbanovic

Hopper is a frog who doesn't fit in so he must be a prince. His search for a princess leads to a friend and the knowledge that he is just perfect the way he is.

Thoughts: Prince of a Frog is such a fun book. I can't wait to add it to my frog storytime. It will go fabulously with I Don't Want to Be a Frog by Dev Petty. The illustrations are bright, colorful, and energetic.

Themes: Frogs, Friendship

Orchard, 2015

Friday, October 5, 2018

Flannel Friday: Spiders

When I was making the spiderweb for my elephants, I decided to make a set of spiders to go with the web. I used a clipart image for my pattern. Puff paint details & wiggle eyes. I use this set with the rhyme "Five Little Spiders Jumping on the Web."

Important Links:
Flannel Friday Blog/Website
Flannel Friday Tumblr
Flannel Friday Pinterest
Flannel Friday Facebook Group

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Teen Minute to Win It

I was originally inspired by Anne at So Tomorrow to host this event for my teens. You can find her posts here, here, here, and here. Jenni and Elizabeth have also posted about Minute To Win It programs.

I've hosted this event three times since 2014 with minor alterations each time.

The first time, I had the following challenges set up for my teens: Back Flip, Stack Attack, Don't Blow the Joker, A Bit Dicey, Floatacious, and Noodling Around.

The second time I replaced Noodling  Around with Baby Blockin'.

The third time, I did Back Flip, Stack Attack, A Bit Dicey, Stack It Up, Scoop It Up, Defy Gravity, Penny Hose, This Blows, Spoon Frog, and Tasty Bracelet. All the new challenges I added I found via Google and Pinterest.

Following Anne's lead I made signs for each challenge. This last time, I added the challenge directions to them.

My favorite challenge is A Bit Dicey.

This program is always fun and I usually add it to my schedule every couple of years.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Those Pesky Rabbits by Ciara Flood

A solitary bear gains some very friendly neighbors. Those pesky rabbits won't leave him alone. But maybe Bear just needs some lessons on how to be a friend.

Thoughts: I love this book! The story is great. The contrast between the grumpy bear and the friendly rabbits is hilarious. It reminds me of Bear and Mouse in Bonny Becker's books. The illustrations are lovely--detailed and such personality in the characters.

Themes: Friendship, Bears, Rabbits

Little Bee, 2015

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Snow Play

I was inspired by Laura's Snowmen for Everyone program and Pinterest.

Snow Play was my first storytime + sensory/play dough activities event.

In 2017, I read Pip and Squeak by Ian Schoenherr and Red Sled by Lita Judge. In 2018, I read Ten on the Sled by Kim Norman and Bears in the Snow by Shirley Parenteau. On the flannel board, we had Let's Make a Snowman.

Play with farm animals, dinosaurs, and flat marbles in snow dough

Make snowmen with play dough, buttons, and craft sticks

Ice skate indoors with wax paper on carpet

Monday, October 1, 2018

The Sky Is Falling! by Mark Teague

You know the story. Acorn. Chicken Little. Panic. What you might not remember is the dancing. Chickens, squirrel, rabbit, cat, pigs, goats, and ducks. Even the fox is dancing. His sneaky plan is thwarted by a

Thoughts: Such a fun take on a classic story. The dancing is a great addition and so is outsmarting the fox by chance. The illustrations are great. Soft colored and detailed. I especially like the different chicken breeds.

Themes: Dancing, Farm, Foxes

Orchard, 2015