Sep 30, 2013

Alphabet Madness

I used this line up for my preschool storytime and a Head Start Parent Training Session.

The Letters Are Lost Lisa Campbell Ernst, which is kind of a boring book, but I used it for a lot of audience participation and I could point out some of the beginning sounds to the kids. We sang and jumped to There's a Dog in School by Bill Wellington, it is always a hit with the kids. I like to use it because there were a lot of different animals in The Letters are Lost, and hey animals singing the alphabet is super weird and fun. As we sing, or bark, or neigh the alphabet, I have the kids jump with each letter to get them moving a little.

Then we read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom! by Bill Martin Jr. I put flannel letters up on the flannel board while we very slowly sang the alphabet. Then we sang it in a big daddy voice, a teeny tiny baby voice, and the grand finale was singing in a fish voice (rub forefinger up and down over your lips as you sing). Kids love it! At the Head Start visit one of the teachers had the parents participate in this verse, it was awesome!

I heard about adding poetry to storytimes in a poetry presentation by Jenna Gilles, a co-worker in our library system. Since then I've done a couple and am trying to add them more frequently. At the Head Start visit I added the poem My Snake from Something BIG Has Been Here by Jack Prelutsky. I had a string snake and gave each of the kids a string snake and talked about letter play to the parents. We made a few of the letters in the poem with the string snake. We only read one verse of the poem because the kiddos were super tiny 3's and weren't interested, I used it as a teachable moment for the parents about moving on when their kids aren't interested in listening.

So, we moved on to Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham. I LOOOOOOVE, love, love this book. The emotion, the trauma, and the drama make it such a fun read aloud. The more over the top I am, the more the kids love the book.

We finished off storytime by making our names with block letters and markers, most boring "art" project ever, but it got each of the kids names on the wall. Having their names on the wall gives them a sense of ownership and belonging that I like to foster at storytime.

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