Flannel Friday: Five Little Books Early Literacy Makeover

I recently updated the Flannels Page of my website and OOF. Looking back at those flannels from the early days of my practice makes me cringe! I’m excited for the encouragement to give these old flannels a fresh look with the latest Flannel Friday Round Up: Extreme Makeover Edition.

Here’s an old fun bookish flannel:


Flannelboard: Five flat, open felt books of various colors.

This flannel goes great with Mollie’s Five Little Books Rhyme:

Five little books at the library

Five little books as great as can be.

Along comes (name) with their library card

To take one home and read!



Flannelboard: Five flat, open felt books of various colors and color-coordinated characters. For example, a green frog with a green book.

When using this flannel in the past, I personally liked to play a Mouse House-esque game:

Red book, red book, what do you hide?

Red book, red book, let’s look inside!

Repeat with other colors


Here’s another fun hide and seek rhyme:

Storytime! Storytime! Take a look.

What will we find inside the (color/genre) book?


All this was well and good… but if you’ve read the blog lately, you know how I feel about flannels in which color is the only variation and everything is the exact same boring size. If you don’t know, check out my Mouse House Makeover.

With the return of indoor storytimes, I knew I wanted to give this old flannel a fresh look. I wanted to use this flannel more purposefully to help kids build concepts of print and narrative skills. Narrative Skills relate to a child’s ability to describe events, retell stories, make their own stories and make predictions. For most of our storytime-age kiddos, Print Awareness means understanding that:

  • Print has meaning and is used for different purposes.
  • There is a relationship between speech and print.
  • People write and illustrate books.
  • Books have parts such as a front and back cover, title page, and spine.
  • The title tells us something about the book.
  • Books are held and read in a certain way (e.g. pages are read left to right, top to bottom).

The mechanics of print concepts (e.g. punctuation, capitalization, spacing between words) come later.

Here’s how I adapted my old flat bookish flannel:

  • Created foldable books (with covers and inside pages) of different sizes.
  • Added titles to the covers.
  • Created different kinds of books – an alphabet book, a counting book, etc.
  • Added text inside some of the pages.
  • Created matching characters.

In addition to using the rhymes above, this flannel now presents so many more opportunities for conversation! Before opening each book to find what’s inside, encourage the kids to examine the cover and make predictions. “What might be inside of a book about oceans?”


Flannelboard: Four closed felt books. The books are different sizes and colors. They are titled: Ocean, Yellow/Amarillo, ABC and 123.

Mix and match the characters and have the kids help put them back in the book where they belong. “What is an apple doing inside of an ocean book?! That’s silly!”


Flannelboard: Four open felt books with white pages inside. Some of the pages are blank; others contain text. For example, the alphabet book says “Aa” on one page and “apple” on the other.

You could even create a blank flannel book and have the kiddos help you tell a NEW story! Use some flannel die-cut characters as a starting point:


I love this new flannel! I’m excited to add more books in the future, too. I know I want to add a book of fairy tales… any other suggestions for me?

Are you a fellow flannel crafter? Connect with us on the Flannel Friday Facebook Group! Looking for more inspiration? Browse the Flannel Friday Pinterest Boards! Want to share your fun flannel ideas? Post them any time to Flannel Friday on Tumblr!

2 thoughts on “Flannel Friday: Five Little Books Early Literacy Makeover”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s