Storyhour Fridays @ 10:30, ages 2-5.
PLUS join us Friday afternoons. Dog Bookbuddies will join us Fridays @ 3:00. For early readers and dog lovers. So stop by after school on Friday to pick up your books and movies, read to a cute pooch, and build something with Legos or K'Nex.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Pre-K Bed & Bath Storytime, Friday, November 21 @ 10:30

What separates the grownups from the babies?
They don't want to shut their eyes and we look for any excuse.

Hundreds of children's books have been written with the idea of lulling the child to sleep, of persuading him by the end of the story that the day is over. But let's start our storytime off with something more fun.

Bath Book: Dini Dinosaur by Karen Beaumont.  Although Beaumont's easy rhymes are as perfect as always, and Dini is pretty cute, this one is a bit on the sugary side.  So remember: these are dinosaurs, and do the Scrub-A-Dub-Dub in your deepest basso profundo

Getting Ready for Bed: There's a Nightmare in My Closet by Mercer Mayer. Night time fears? We've all got them.

Getting Ready for Bed:  Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late! Also, Pigeon Needs a Bath ("I Do Not!") by Mo Willems

Nobody fights harder than the pigeon.

  • Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion. It's always nice to pull out a book and here the moms say, "Oh, I love this one!"

  • Book of Sleep, Lights Out, Nights Out by Boniface, and Sweet Dreams by Kajikawai are all nice books about how animals sleep & nocturnal animals.
  • The Napping House by the great Audrey and Don Wood can be a perfect performance piece. I get out a xylophone, and as each new napper is introduced -- granny, boy, dog, cat, flea, etc, -- I hit a new note, until we reach the exciting climax and I sweep a glissando.


  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star (again, use xylophone)
  • Starlight, Starbright
  • 5 Bears in the bed, and the little one said, "Roll over, roll over."
  • 5 little monkeys jumping on the bed.
  • Hop Little Bunnies

Craft Project: 

  • Thanksgiving Banners with foam stickers.
Maybe next year:
  • Lavender Aromatherapy for Bedtime  Mix up an inexpensive batch of bath salts with the kids, divide them up into baggies (funnels are the fun part) and send it home with them. Only don't call it bath salts. Maybe Tatooine sand? Bath Salts Recipe from Garden Therapy

Don't forget to wear your bathrobe and sock monkey slippers to storytime! Librarian Donna Holmen invites all her little patrons to wear PJs, and ends by giving them little flashlights and turning off the light so they can sing Twinkle Twinkle.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Food Storytime, Friday, November 14 @ 10:30


Pick a Puppet -- Any Puppet

I start off with my all time favorite turtle puppet and the Vachel Lindsay poem:
I have a little turtle, he lives in a box.
He swims in the puddles, he climbs on the rocks.
He snaps at the mosquitoes, he snaps at the fleas, he snaps at the minnows,
He snaps at me!
He caught the mosquitoes, he caught the fleas, he caught those minnows,
But he didn't catch me!
While I recite I circle the room and snap and nibble at the children by turns. Change words to do with another puppet.
  • Yummy YUCKY by Leslie Patricelli. All the kids were rubbing their tums along with the yums.
  • Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog or The Duckling Gets a Cookie by the great Mo Willems. I've perfected the Pigeon Yell: it's like a regular yell, with a scrunched up face and pulled out syllables, but almost at a whisper. Works better than the extra decibels
  • How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food by Yolen.
  • Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar. Great clapping song. Don't forget the puppets.
  • Monster Don't Eat Broccoli by Barbara Jean Hicks.
Didn't get to:
  • The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Scieszka. 
  • Stop That Pickle by Peter Armour.  (I dedicated this story to Zach who reads this book, and only this book, every time he visits the library.)
  • Watermelon Seed by Pizzoli (so cute!)

  • Down around the corner at the bakery shop
  • 5 Gingerbread Men
  • Peel Banana
Clapping Song
  • Mashed potatoes hot, mashed potatoes cold, mashed potatoes in the pot nine days old
  • Patty cake
  • Bread and butter, jelly & jam

M & M Game:

I made up cards with numbers 1-4 in the M & M colors, set out the dish of M & Ms, gave each child a cup, and started pulling numbers from my pack.  A 2 card meant they could pick 2 M & Ms.  I think next year I would slow it way down.  First I would spin for the numbers and then I would pick the colors. That would have given the 2 year olds a chance to catch up with the 3 year olds.



I made a trial batch the night before, and as promised by The Imagination Tree, it was extremely easy and turned out perfectly. I brought in the dry ingredients premixed in a Tupperware so set up was very easy. Hot water from the cooler worked fine. While I let it cool off, I divided the playdough I brought in from home. We “baked” a pink cake (Milo forgot that he didn’t want pink and shouted “I love pink!”) and by great good fortune, I had exactly eight children, so we got to have a quick fraction lesson when I divided it up with a cake slice. They played with it while I kneaded the second batch, which was still nice and warm when I divided that too.

I used this recipe from The Imagination Tree, minus the glycerine. Great site; lots of comments from readers. I did not add fancy ingredients like unsweetened Koolaid and lavendar extracts. I’m saving that for the Master Chef Playdough Challenge.

Fruit Loop Necklaces!

Why do I love making froot loop necklaces so much? 
Because they're tropically lovely AND so delicious?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Farm Animal Storytime, Friday, November 7 @ 10:30.

2014 Line-up

Moo by David Larochelle has exactly two words:  Moo and Baa.  Hilarious. It has to be good for kids to hear all the grownups enjoying a book with them.

Old MacDonald pop-up book by Cony & Smyth.  Starts the storytime off nicely, and the moms all join in nicely.

Song: Wheels on the (Farm) Bus

On the Farm by David Elliott is illustrated with wonderful woodcuts that immediately catch your eye and draw you in. The real miracle for me is that the book is composed of short poems written about each of the farm animals. Now I love readaloud books that jingle and rhyme, but I usually steer of true poetry for the kids. But these short, fun verses are an enrichment that evoke the animals brilliantly. A real addition to the language.

Mandy Archer's Driving Series has four books and the kids love them.  Action packed, these animal drivers are always there for every emergency. Just like we like to be.

For Older Children
  • Beatrice's Goat 
  • Click, Clack, Moo
  • Giggle, Giggle, Quack

Monday, October 27, 2014

Halloween Storytime, Friday, October 31 @ 10:30

We'll be trick 'r treating throughout the library this Friday, so wear your superduds or tails & horns, and get ready! We'll supply the books, the songs, the treats & treat bags. 
Boo! @ your local library

A children's library is the place to be for Halloween lovers.  Halloween is that night of the year when we can be anything we can imagine. Halloween is that time when we can take our fears (of vampires, witches or bats) turn them inside out, wear them like a hat, and get rid of them for good.

Surreptitiously storytime seduces small children into learning to sit still, participate in a group, listen and enjoy a book BUT NOT ON HALLOWEEN!!! On Halloween I’m wearing my de rigeur witch outfit, the little ones are dressed according to their private fantasy world, and after storytime we bust loose and go Trick or Treating in the library! I give them each a goodie bag and they move from reference desk to circulation desk, etc. It opens them up to the rest of the library and the adult patrons love to see the little ones in their finery.
Monster Mash

2014 Lineup

  • In a Dark, Dark Wood - pop-up by David Carter
  • The Sleepless Little Vampire by Egielski.  Great sound effects.
  • Owl Babies by Waddell. Gripping tale.
  • There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed! by Colandro(Note to self: wobblin' works better with goblin than "started to spin".
  • Just Say Boo!  by Hood.  A very nice reminder about Halloween manners, and an excellent segue to Trick or Treating in the Library. 

  • Trick or Treating in the library
  • Dancing start & stop to Monster Mash
  • Halloween Bingo
My Favorite Parts:
The books were solid. I wouldn't change them next year. 
Halloween Bingo was great. Monster Mash dancing was fun too.
Still looking for the perfect songs.  

Note to self:  Next year, create strips of spooky black Halloween garbage-bag fringe earlier in the month. Use it in the children's section, and then you'll be able to have to ready for the Halloween party too.

Monster Mash by David Catrow

Look what's in print now! A great copy of The Monster Mash! As you turn the pages, you'll start to tap your feet and the ghost of Bobby Pickett will begin to speak through you! Love this one.

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat!

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat! by Lucille Colandro

These books, themed for every holiday, are fun to read if you go through them picking up speed, till reading them turns into a marathon performance.

Halloween Role Play!

Pumpkin fists: Make tight fists in air and wave around.
Ghost hands: Wave hands around, flutter fingers, and go Boo!
Spiders: Tap fingers along the floor, table & innocent bystanders.
Witches: Rub your hands together and cackle.
Monsters: Claws and roar.
Dracula: Good EVEning.
Black cat: Raised shoulders and hiss.
Werewolf: Elbows at side, left head, and howl.
Owl: Hoot and swoop.
Bat: Eeek and swoop.
For Older Kids

Frankenstein by Rick Walton

Moms and older kids laugh themselves silly over this wild takeoff of Madeline. Miss Devel presides over Frankenstein's castle, and find himself one night, not in need of a sudden operation, but missing his entire head.
Room on the Broom

Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson

Perfect for slightly older kids -- not my two year olds.

The Hallo-Wiener

The Hallo-Wiener by Dav Pilkey

I so love this classic written by the great Dav Pilkey, author of Dogzilla and Captain Underpants. Poor Hallowiener. You've got to feel for him. His mom made him wear a hot dog costume she made him for Halloween and everyone llaughs at the little wiener dog.
For Older Kids:
Whose riding on the bus today? A ghost (Boo! Boo!), a witch (heh heh heh), a vampire, (Good EVEning), a monster (Rawr!), an owl (Whoo whoo), and a cat (meow!).

Itsy Bitsy Spider! Nothing more Halloween-y than a spider!
Once I Had a Pumpkin
Once I had a pumpkin, a pumpkin, a pumpkin
Oh once I had a pumpkin with no face at all
With no eyes and no nose and no mouth and no teeth
Oh once I had a pumpkin with no face at all
So I carved a jack-o-lantern, a jack-o-lantern, a jack-o-lantern
And it looked just like this
With 2 eyes and one nose and mouth and big teeth
So I carved a jack-o-lantern and it looked just this

A few other favorites
Pumpkin, Pumpkin
(tune: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star)
Pumpkin, pumpkin on the ground
How?d you get so big and round?
You started as a seed so small
Now you are a great big ball
Pumpkin, pumpkin on the ground,
How?d you get so big and round?
                                             ?Diane Thom
The Roly-Poly Pumpkin
(tune: The Eensy Weensy Spider)

Oh, the roly-poly pumpkin
Went rolling down the hill
Once it started rolling
It could not keep still
It rolled and rolled and rolled
Until it bumped into a rock
Then the roly-poly pumpkin
Rolled to a stop!

Craft: Ghosties!

Styrofoam plates and white garbage bags — could it get any easier? Yeah, I know, these things are uggggly, but come on, it’s Halloween, and your kid’s only three years old! Here’s what I would do: have your child do one every year and SAVE it to compare how the faces change.
or toilet roll mummies.  Just a strip of TP torn in two.  I used jars with votive candles so the kids could light them up at home.

Learning to read with bad jokes! And torture your parents and friends by reading them again, and again and again.:

Boys Life Funny Halloween Jokes
These really are funny!
Some more good ones
Kids don't always get puns, and some joke references, but there are some goodies (or baddies?) on this page.

Monday, October 20, 2014

MONSTER Storytime, Friday, October 24 @ 10:30

Monsters are the cookie eater in all of us. They're loveable and furry. They may be pocket sized mischief makers, or they could be the troll who lives under the bridge or under our beds. They could be us. Or they could be what we are most afraid of. When I'm telling stories to three year olds, though, monsters tend to come in bright colors, have googly eyes waving on unlikely antenna, and are sillier than they are scary.
Do it as: 1. Puppet show or 2. Audience participation

Doing Where the Wild Things Are is like coming home -- so many years of reading this book to so many different children. The children are as fascinated by the fact that I do have it memorized, but I still like to incorporate the physical book with its wonderful pictures as a jumping off into Sendak's strange world. Just did it again today. When I finished, I looked around the audience of mixed ages, from 1 to 8, and all were rapt.
I used my puppet theater and stuck my head out of the top to be the mother, while I had Max chasing a little stuffed dog around. Then he sailed off through night and day in a toy boat I had and danced around with those wild things while I recited the words of Sendak's great book melodiously.
I love doing this as a puppet show, but it is just as effective to read the book. 
5 Little Monsters sleeping in my bed
1 crawled out from underneath the spread
I called to Mama and Mama said,
“No more monsters sleeping in the bed!”
4 Little Monsters…
Monster Mash

Monster Mash

Your child will wonder why you begin humming and singing as you flip over the horribly illustrated pages of this instant classic.

Don't Push the Button!

The ULTIMATE in interactional picture books -- push the button and the monster changes colors, goes polka dots, etc. So -- don't push the button! Oh, no! You pushed the button! This book really rescued a wiggly storytime.
Monster Craft
Isn't Emma's full of personality?

It was a small group, so I had enough bottles of paint to pass around. I demonstrated the first circular squirt of paint (much like Rachel Ray's splotch of EVOO) and then dotted other colors on.  THEN THE MAGIC!  (Pages were prefolded to make this work more easily.) I folded, splootched, opened and OOOOOh so beautiful.  So funny when the kids got to this stage, all the Oooohs around the table.  (And ooze too -- keep a lot of newspaper handy.)  A lovely teen volunteer had cut out the face pieces for me and the kids put them on every which way in true monster form.