I recently got to visit my former kindergarten co-teacher for a special storytime visit at her new school and we had so much fun! I loved getting to meet her new kinders and check out her new classroom. So many memories! 😭 I also popped across the hallway and did storytime with her new partner.
Here’s what we did:
Talk: Library vs. Non Library Sort
Like always, I started this school visit by having the kids help me sort through the library vs. non-library stuff in my bag. Do you go to the library to get a shot? NO! Can you get books from the library? YES! They are always so intrigued by the robots. After a brief but spirited discussion about whether or not Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is the best movie ever, we read our first story.
Read: A Busy Creature’s Day Eating by Mo Willems
Before reading this book, I introduced the author and asked the kiddos if they had ever read any of the Pigeon books. They had, and they were SUPER excited to read another book by Mo Willems! I explained that I would need their help to tell the story and we practiced singing the ABC’s beforehand while I pointed to the letters in the endpapers (to a few different tunes).
They kinders loved helping me read this story by filling in the blanks! They especially loved shouting POTTY when little creature’s digestive system just can’t take anymore and he has to make a run for the restroom.
Too much furniture and huge hot sauce halibut hoagie! 😂
Play: Shape Monster (puppet)
Not to worry kinders, my monster doesn’t like to eat children! They’re too salty. Nope, this particular monster only likes to eat shapes.
I passed out shapes and had the kinders chat with each other about their shapes – how are they the same/different? Whose shape is bigger? What color is your shape? Can you find a friend with the same shape as you? Then we did the rhyme and they very bravely fed my monstrous friend.
Shape monster, shape monster, munch, munch, munch!
What kind of shape would you like for lunch?
We had some WIGGLES and GIGGLES after this one! We took some deep breaths before diving into our next book.
Read: Firefighter Duckies by Frank Dormer or Let’s Sing a Lullaby with the Brave Cowboy by Jan Thomas
Gosh those kinders sure were brave! We talked about how being brave is not the same as not being afraid, then I let the classes vote which book they would like to read next. The first class wanted to read about brave firefighter duckies, and the second class wanted to read about the brave cowboy.
I couldn’t really get a gauge on whether or not the first class really enjoyed Firefighter Duckies, but as I walked out during recess I saw a group of kinders pretending they were firefighter duckies and rescuing each other, so the book must have landed better than I thought!
Sing: Shake and Stop (parachute)
After passing out the parachute, this is a good song to practice some basic motions and also get the kids used to following directions:
Shake and Stop
Tune: “If You’re Happy and You Know It”
We shake and we shake, then we STOP!
We shake and we shake, then we STOP!
We shake and we shake, we shake and we shake, we shake and we shake,
Then we… STOP!
(repeat with go up/down, in/out, etc)
The parachute got the first class SUPER excited and following directions was really difficult, so for the second class I took some more time to preview expectations before passing it out. My storytime kiddos are so used to the chute by now that I forget it’s really cool/special/excitable/something to scream over.
Sing: Sleeping Bunnies (parachute)
Rather than being sleeping bunnies, we started off as exhausted firefighter duckies after a long day, or sleeping cows after being sung a lullaby. Then I took suggestions from the classes for additional verses.
What are your go-to storytime titles with the school-agers? How do you manage behavior with the parachute? Would love to learn more in the comments below!