Toddler Time format

I'm working on a new format for my Toddler story times.  This is the first time I've done a toddler program, my previous library only offered programs for 3+ when I did programming.  When it was finally allowed I had been moved out of children's programming.  So as I go along I am learning and experimenting.

Last session I did:
Opening rhyme
Play time

As I ran the program I was continually researching, reading blogs, and seeing what others did in their programs.  I also offered a survey asking what parents thought at the end of the program.  Unfortunately, I didn't get as many suggestions as I hoped from that.  But, I do think I've picked up some good ideas from other story timers.  So I'm changing how I do things.  I'll see how it goes and tweak things for the fall.

My new format will be:
Welcome songs & announcements
Intro song
Repeat rhyme (a rhyme we will repeat for 3 weeks)
Shake my sillies out (Raffi)
Rotating nursery action rhyme (we will cycle through 4 different rhymes, 1 a week)
Goodbye song
Play time

I'm hoping that this new format will work out well.

*Songs/rhymes will be on a separate post or page, when I'm not using my tablet and have full blogger functionality.

My First Flip-Flap Book of Fruit by Robert Salanitro

A few weeks ago I was invited to a Literacy Night at our local Early Head Start.  Each month they feature a book and do several activities centered around the book.  March's book was My First Flip-Flap Book of Fruit by Robert Salanitro.  It really isn't a super great story time book since it is a rather small board book, but the story is cute and it has related activities for educational growth on each page (for example on the apple page it shows a person reaching high to pick an apple and asks children to show how they would reach up to pick an apple).  Some are activities and some are open ended questions or questions about the book.  I thought it was a really cute idea, and would love to see it in a regular sized book.

I wanted to do more than just read the book so I created a flannelboard (after asking and finding out no one had made one I could 'borrow') based on the different fruits.  I made two pieces for each type of fruit- one of the outside and one of the inside.  As I read the story I placed the doubled up pieces on the board and the kids "peeled" the fruits showing what they looked like inside.  A couple of pieces had three layers- like the pineapple so I could show a segment and then the wedges that kids are more familiar with.  I think it came out pretty cute and the kids had a lot of fun playing with it.
The collected fruits all put together
The fruits and their inside pieces

And a surprise part to the pumpkin, on the back I added a smiling jack-o-lantern.

Who, What, Why?

I'm Library Danielle.  :)  I've been officially working in libraries since the ripe old age of 14, and volunteered for a few years before that.  Books were my refuge as a kid, so it made sense to me to want to be IN a library.  At that point though there wasn't much going on in my library.  I think there was a story time for preschoolers, but it was just stories and maybe a paper craft.  No songs, no fingerplays, no flannelboards.  Just books.  Which is how I was taught to run my programs when I progressed up the library ladder.  I branched out a bit to include interaction and activities in my story times, but the rest was never encouraged.  As the years went by and I kept moving up I often to wondered about the "more" for story times.  I heard about others using sign language or props in their programs and was interested, but again, it wasn't encouraged.  And when I was moved to a Young Adult position I tabled story time and didn't think to much about it anymore. 

But now I'm in a new library where I have open permission to run story time as I see fit.  Which is super encouraging.  And it means that I can try new things- like songs and flannelboards.  I'm not too keen on the singing, even though I know the kids don't care, after so long I'm still self conscious.  But I'm singing.  And experimenting.  And hoping that I can find a niche for my programs.  Right now I'm running five programs a week- two baby/toddler programs, two preschool programs, and one all ages program.  I may switch the baby/toddler programs into two individual programs so one baby and one toddler, but I'm not really that confidant about my baby program skills yet.  I know it will take some experimenting and I just have to get my feet wet, but it is intimidating. 

I'm starting this blog to help me organize my ideas and plan story times.  I want to be able to share ideas, problems, and issues and get feedback from the wonderful community of libraries and story tellers out there.  I joined a wonderful group called Flannel Fridays and I want to share things that I'm coming up with.  Not that my flannelboard collection is very big, but it's growing and I want more.  My story times have a lot of potential right now and I want to begin to reach it, so I'm taking the first step by putting my ideas out there for comment. I'm really hoping to get feedback from my colleagues on how to reach that level I'm trying to.  :)

Usage Rights

DesignBlog BloggerTheme comes under a Creative Commons License.This template is free of charge to create a personal blog.You can make changes to the templates to suit your needs.But You must keep the footer links Intact.