Thursday Thoughts: How Do You Plan?

If there’s one thing I learned from my time as a teacher, it’s that the more organized and thorough you are the first time, the faster and easier it is the next time.  I actually really enjoy planning!  I sometimes miss my multitude of binders for guided reading, guided math, year-at-a-glance… There’s just something so satisfactory about organizing information.  I suppose that’s why I work in libraries.  🙂

My storytime planning process has evolved over the years.  Although I usually still write down my plans for the day on paper, I do most of my brainstorming and archiving online.  I use Microsoft OneNote to organize all my storytime stuff by theme:


Each themed Storytime Notebook has 7 sections:

  • Books
  • Action Songs & Rhymes
  • Fingerplays
  • Flannels
  • Crafts
  • Resources
  • Reflections

Here’s a look at the Book Section, which is further broken down into Toddler and Preschool age-appropriate titles.  I tag each title with helpful notes for me and star favorite read-alouds from the past:


After each storytime, I reflect on what went well and make notes for things I want to change/try next time:


My Baby Storytime Notebook looks a little different.  I use the same theme and songs for a month with my babies, but change out the books and the flannels each week.  Here’s a look at my Baby Notebook:


What does your planning process look like for storytimes and programming?  What are your favorite tools?  Please share!

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