…storytime, books, apps, and ideas

Archive for July, 2013

App-like books

aa countHas anyone else noticed the trend to make books more like apps? Just today, I read another one.  COUNT THE MONKEYS by Mac Barnett made me feel like I was reading a book app.  This is not a bad thing, in fact, I rather enjoy the active instructions.  For example, you are asked to turn the page slowly, raise your hand, move your hand in a  zigzag, etc.  The book does not actually DO anything, it is the reader that is doing the actions. And the actions will be great fun in storytime.

TAP THE MAGIC TREE by Christie Matheson is coming out in August.  This one really reminds me of an app, especially since the reader is asked to tap, pat, knock, shake, and rub the tree. Again, lots of fun for storytime. I will be really surprised if these books don’t get their own apps. It only seems natural and easy.

One of my favourite app-like books is PRESS HERE by Herve Tullet. This one does have its own app, and it is almost as much fun as the book. I love that Tullet has so many active books — just about every one of his books are almost toy-like in their interactive design. aa tap

Other books that remind me of apps are: TUCK ME IN by Dean Hacohen, THERE ARE CATS IN THIS BOOK by Viviane Schwarz, and TANKA TANKA SKUNK, by Steve Webb.

How about you? Have you found any app-like books you love to use in storytime?

 

 

Silliness abounds!

Set up for the book app

Set up for the book app

I learned a few new silly songs at the ALA conference, so I decided to share them at my monthly Milk & Cookies Story Hour.  I also share an app, and was looking for something silly, and then found out that Sheree Fitch’s book, There Were Monkeys in My Kitchen, has been made into an app. This is the first time that I have used a book app in storytime (I have usually used shorter, interactive apps).  I actually let Sheree Fitch read it, (using the “Read to Me” option) since she is a well-known and beloved author for Nova Scotians.  And she does a good job of reading it. But 3 year olds would rather have a LIVE person read to them, even with the interactive elements such as popping a bubble-gum bubble and dancing along with monkeys. The older kids (ranging from 6-9) enjoyed it, and sat for it, but the younger ones got a bit fidgety. Lesson learned! The adults in the audience also enjoyed it.

But the main reason I wanted to use a silly app was that I had these awesome silly songs and puppet show that I just learned. We did “Fruit Salad”, which I learned at ALA during “guerrilla storytime”.  You can see it in action here, at around 3:16 in the video. We’ll be doing that “Shake Shake” song next month, so stay tuned!  I also learned “The Wishy Washy Washer Woman” from the WCCLS wunderkind, Rick. Both songs were very well received by the whole age range (even adults).

I also found a fun little puppet story that I adapted a bit to match my puppets (I didn’t have a chick, so I used a hen). The story is from the book Farmyard Beat by Lindsay Craig, and here’s how Steven Engelfried does it.  After the puppet story I had to read the book because the crowd demanded it! Always fun to compare.

Play storytimeOther books we shared were: Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great by Bob Shea, which again was more appreciated by the older kids, but since this storytime has turned into a family free-for-all, I’m ok with having some things that are over the littler ones heads.  I also read The Doghouse by Jan Thomas and Duck on a Bike by David Shannon.

Then it was time for play and also milk & cookies. Vanilla sandwich cookies and chocolate milk this time. It really doesn’t matter how cheap the cookies are. Kids will eat them. And these were pretty good for cheap cookies. The 6 iPads were quickly snapped up, but so were the puppets, the textured balls, and the magnets. I also brought along the Monster Feet which are always a hit.

Milk & Cookies storytime is really fun– and I consider it my Testing Ground storytime — I get to try out new things on a live audience. And so far, they really seem to enjoy being my guinea pigs!

Summer Storytime

Summer is a hard time for me to get time to blog, but I just had a few minutes to enjoy some of the new books that came in, so I am sharing them with you! Here are a few fun books that would be good for a summer storytime.

Ribbit by Rodrigo Folgueira

A pink pig turns up in the frog pond, and all he says is “Ribbit”. Is he making fun of them? aa ribbitWhat is he up to? The wise old beetle solves the mystery. A fun little riff on friendship.

 

I Wish I Had… by Giovanna Zoboli

The narrator wishes for animal qualities and the illustrations are lovely for the storytime setting. A quite, gentle selection.

 

Open this Little Book by Jesse Klausmeier

The Many little books inside this book will delight your guests at storytime. A cumulative tale that would really work well turned into a flannel story!

 

Unicorn Thinks He’s Prettaa unicorny Great by Bob Shea

Poor Goat. He was thinking he was pretty cool until Unicorn came along. Unicorn can do better magic tricks, can fly faster than goat can ride, and can make cupcakes rain from the sky. But Unicorn thinks Goat is pretty great, too.  Bob Shea’s signature humour shines here. So. Much. Fun.

 

That’s all for now. Summer posts will be few and far between, but thanks for reading!