Friday, December 23, 2016

Snow and Snowmen, Friday, January 6 @ 10:30

When the Weather Outside Is Frightful...

Even though my library is a block from the Gulf of Mexico and many of my three year olds have never seen the snow, I have plenty of great snow tales for them. "For playing in, it's a lot like sand, or even mud! You build with it." We talk a little about who has and hasn't seen snow and the animals who live in snow.

Bear Snores On: I brought in the giant bear and laid him across three chairs, explaining that it was winter and he was fast asleep.  He looked pretty comical. I had a mouse, rabbit, a raccoon, a skunk, and a crow, so I read the book and presented the characters as I read. They looked pretty funny as I plumped them on the giant sleeping bear.
  • Intro: Wild Tracks by Jim Arnosky (j591.479). I made white felt pawprints from this book and scattered them over the rug for the kids to find when they came in to storytime.  Next year I might make extras of the big ones.
  • That's Not My Snowman by Fiona Watt.  These books are hard to use in big groups, but I wanted to introduce the snowman for the craft later. And it wasn't that big a group.  
  • Snow by Magic  . Such a wiggly group, I wanted to start simple. Used a lot of puppets. Emphasis point:  rabbits change color in the winter. What if we did? What if our hair and eyes and skin turned bright white?
  • Katy and the Big Snow by Virginia Lee Burton.  A perfectly told classic about a powerful snow shovel that saves a city from a blanket of snow. What could be better? After this, we sang Motor Boat and added Steam Shovel, Steam Shovel, push that snow BACK!
  • Snow by Uri Shulevitz. Intro point:  What color is the city on the first page? Blue, green? It's gray. And what color is it on the last page? This year I gathered up all the big white pom poms and just threw them out at the crowd towards the end of the story.  It was a nice surprise.Last year:I drew a simple cityscape in pencil on a big piece of gray paper. During storytime I went over it with a thick black marker. The kids were amazed at my (non) existent talent and settled to watch. Then I used my extremely large Oriental trading snowflake to stamp first one, then two, then three snowflakes on the page, reading the simple words of Shulevitz' story as I went along. A hit!
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. Before I begin reading this, I tell the children how quiet snow is. The beach is noisy --the sound of waves and seagulls. But snow shushes. then I read in my quietest voice. I brought in a baggie of cornstarch to show them the sound of snow crunching. It exploded all over me.  They really loved that, and then they exploded, but it was very snow-like. Didn't read it all -- kids so wiggly.
  • Curious George in the Snow by Rey.  Curious George monkeys around with a lot of cool stuff like sleds/rocket ships, ziplines, etc.

Flannelboard song
We sang This is Little, This is Big. Then we picked up some pretend snow, made pretend snowballs and threw them at the black board! First we made a little one, then a medium size mama one, and then a big daddy. At each pitch, I lined up a circle. After three we had made the snowman. "One Little Snowflake" song with templates:

At the beginning of this lesson, I was careful to show the kids how to paint a circle: Just go round and round and round. I had them paint invisible circles in the air, small, medium, big. (Ran out of white paint -- used chalk and it did just as well!)

1. Paint a snowman on a piece of blue or black paper with white paint. Make a huge circle, a big circle, and a small circle. Use round motions.
2. Add shaving cream (shake first!) and some glue to their plastic cups. Go over the snowman with this fluffy mess.
3. Add some black eyes (I used black fun foam punched out with hole punch), a carrot nose, (sliver) and some red buttons (pom poms). A red crepe paper scarf. Maybe add some snow dots. Maybe a snow bank for him to stand on.
4. Sprinkle with salt to give a little added sparkle. Or sparkles if you dare.
This craft would make a very nice cutting exercise. 

Paper Snowflakes

Help!  Someone has rewritten our copy of FROZEN and put in some of the wrong words!  "The rulers of Arendelle, the king and queen, were kind. Their young daughters, Elsa and Artichoke, were the joy of their lives." That just doesn't sound right!  I need some of you to come in and help sort this out!
(The kids were mostly twos. I was glad that Naomi was there -- she got all my  jokes and laughed a great deal at the idea of Elsa and Princess Artichoke building a policeman.  But I had to cut it short.)
How to Be a Puppeteer in 2 Minutes

I love this “How to Be a Puppeteer in 2 Minutes” because that’s how long my attention span is. Stuff like: The PUPPET is supposed to make eye contact with the audience. YOU’re supposed to make eye contact with the PUPPET.

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