…storytime, books, and ideas

Posts tagged ‘Halloween’

Fall into books…

Here’s a new batch of books, just in time for autumn:

Romping Monsters, Stomping Monsters by Jane Yolenaa romping

Another in the long line of “monster manners” books. Little monsters frolic in the park and get grumpy, but of course, end up saying “sorry”. Very simple rhyming test will add filler to monster/Halloween storytimes. Non-scary pictures make it fun for the wee ones.

How big could your pumpkin grow? By Wendell Minor

A fun add to October storytimes which includes a lot of great vocabulary.

Monster be good by Natalie Marshall

Friendly, silly, big-eyed monsters misbehave, but this book tells you how to tame them. A nice addition to Halloween storytimes.

aa weeWee Hours by Stephanie Watson

A fanciful addition to the bedtime genre. What goes on while you sleep? Little elves called the Wee Hours prance about in your bedroom, that’s what. Gentle and playful wee things inhabit this night-time counting book. Have children count and move along.

Read me a story, Stella – by Marie Louise Gay

Stella and Sam have lovely imaginations, and Ms. Gay shows us that those good imaginations came from reading books. Familiar characters make this very sweet bookish tale a good add to storytimes for those who can sit for a longer reading.

Pete the Cat- Wheels on the Bus

Not as spiffy and fun as a “real” Pete the Cat book, this one is based on the character created by J. Dean and Eric Litwin. While not as great as we expect from Pete, it will be a good addition to the transportation storytimes, especially for groups who know and love Pete.

 Peck Peck Peck by Lucy Cousinsaa peck

Little woodpecker learns to peck- and pecks everything in sight! Have kids peck along for a fun interactive read. Nicely designed with holes in the pages, this book is a good fit for storytimes.

My Blue is Happy by Jessica Young

A young girl looks at colors through her own lens – and as others see them and finds that colors can be many moods. A different look at color for storytime.

The things I can do– by Jeff Mack

Proud toddlers who have learned to tie shoes, use glue, draw, and take a bath will relate to the characters in this rhyming book with fun, child-like illustrations.






Halloween Storytime!

Today I did Halloween storytime – I have to admit, it is my favourite.  Storytime here is a mixed bag– babies in arms, crawlers, toddlers, and 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 year olds attend. You just never know who is going to show up.

Here’s the books we shared:                                                            

Halloween Surprise by Corinne Demas

Ten Little Beasties by Rebecca and Ed Emberley

Monster Mash by David Catrow (song after, more on that later)

What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen by Nick Sharratt — this one was the hit of the books, with the interactive opening of the doors and the cheering YES! or  NOOOOO!. They loved this book.

Felt stories included the Jack o’ Lantern story (you can find pattern and instructions here). They loved the silliness of this and giggled through the whole thing. I also did one of my old favourites, Knock Knock. This one was also well-received. They love the flannel board stories!

Did a few action rhymes, including “Monster Monster Turn Around” (a modified version of Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear turn around), and Two Little Ghosties which was fun, they really enjoyed the BOO! at the end.

I added in some really fun and simple activities. We did Spoon Races — wooden spoons with golf balls that had eyeballs drawn on with Sharpie markers. I was surprised that some of them could actually do it! we do have a set of larger, plastic balancing toys for the younger kids, and they enjoyed these as well. I tried playing Monster Mash after I read the song, and I got them all up to dance, but for some reason, today they were not so keen on dancing. Maybe it was the song, or maybe they were just shy today. Turned it off about halfway through. The favourite activity may have been Fishing. I put some spider and bat rings and little bracelets into a bucket, and the fishing poles were bendy straws.  They got to keep what they fished out. I was MOBBED for this one.

For craft we made handprint ghosts. Surprisingly, the paint was well received by parents and did not get everywhere. I had a wet towel handy (pardon the pun) to wipe off the paint. Easy craft: Paint their hands with white tempera, then they make a print onto black construction paper. I had some googley eyes to glue on as well.  So cute! One little boy brought his truck along, and it made a ghost painting, too.

For snacks we had Apple Monster Mouths and Eyeball Cupcakes (for the apple treats, I used carrots instead of almonds, just to stay away from the whole Nut Allergy thing).  Loads of fun was had by ALL!

So many of these ideas I found on Pinterest. Here’s my Pinterest HALLOWEEN board, check it out for these and more great fun ideas!

Feeling crafty

I’m preparing for a Halloween storytime and a couple of Teen programs, and I’ve been looking for some fun crafts.  For the teen program, I needed a skull template for decorations  (they’ll be cutting out black skulls for decor).  I found the perfect template on the Hello! Lucky blog.  Once I had copied it onto cardstock to use as a tracing template, I realized it made a very nice template for Day of the Dead skulls.  So I made one! Inspiration for these is easy to find, just do a search for “Day of the Dead Skulls” and you’ll find lots –a Google image search yielded many ideas.  I think it could work with preschoolers if you pre-cut the skull shapes, and let them go with glue and collage materials, maybe glitter, too. For school-age, I’d have them do the cutting, and have them search for images in books or online. It took me about 20 minutes to do mine (including a search for beads and yarn). A perfect craft for the end of  October, and you can add some multicultural into the program by sharing what these skulls & Dia de los muertos are all about.
So– how I did it:  Photocopy 4 skulls onto brightly colored cardstock. Cut out (for preschool). Use collage materials — yarn, beads, glitter, sequins, paper, etc to decorate. I glued mine onto another piece of paper just to make it more finished looking. You could make several and they’d be great decorations hung all around the room.

Autumn is… books

Books are falling onto the shelves like leaves from a tree. Or something like that. A whole new crop of good storytime choices await!

A Leaf Can Be… Laura Purdie Salas

It’s nice when a book can work both for storytime and as an informational book,. Young nature lovers could learn much about leaves in this book. Art extensions include leaf rubbings or leaf creations similar to those in Lois Ehlert’s “Leaf Man”. Rich in vocabulary and perfect for autumn storytimes.

Duck Says Don’t – Alison Ritchie

Bossy Duck won’t allow any fun while in charge of the pond;  that makes everyone else leave and go play in the meadow. Duck puts up a sign to welcome them all back, fun included. Use Duck’s signs to play with words – you could make signs around the room, point them out to kids. Have them make their own signs, too!

Jonathan & Martha – Peter Horacek

Two worms meet, tangle, and then become friends. There’s a lesson here, presented in an odd manner, but still fun enough for storytime. Food, sharing, worms, & friendship are themes here. Make it interactive!

Monkey See, Look at Me – Lorena Siminovich

Toddlers will enjoy being in on the joke – a monkey pretends to be other animals. Get them to chime in on the repetitive refrain and increase those talking and vocabulary skills!

Dinosaur Thunder – Marian Dane Bauer

Little brother is afraid of thunder, but not dinosaurs! His fears are tamed by relating it to something he loves. Lots of emotion in the illustrations;  a gentle lesson on fears. Could work in a dinosaur storytime.

Bang Boom Roar – A busy crew of Dinosaurs – Nate Evans

Alliteration and rhyme make this a good choice for sharing. The illustrations are a bit busy, but dino-crazed youngsters will love it.

Dino Football – Lisa Wheeler

Add sports and rhyme to your next dinosaur storytime with this book. Not a lot to the story, just a good old football game, played by lots of dinos, but it will be a hit with a certain crowd.

 Laugh Out Loud Baby – Tony Johnston

Based on the Navajo tradition of the First Laugh Ceremony, this joyful tribute to laughter should give you a reason to LOL. Lots of fun vocabulary in this one.

Monster Mash– David Catrow

Just in time for Halloween—the old song comes to life through detailed monster illustrations which might be a tad scary for the very youngest. Read the book, put on the song, and mash!

Stay Close to Mama – Toni Buzzeo

Twiga the baby giraffe is very curious, and nearly gets into trouble several times because of it. Add a sunny visit to Africa and give your storytimers a rich vocabulary experience with this book.

My Mama Earth – Susan B. Katz

Lovely colors enhance this simple, rhyming tribute. Mama Earth is the focus, but children will likely relate to the Mother aspect more than the environmental one.

A Kiss Means I Love You – Kathryn M. Allen

Large full-color photographs illustrate this toddlerific explanation of talk-free emotions. Get ready to be smooched and hugged after you share this book! Great choice for baby stortytimes, too.

Oh No! – Candace Fleming

Eric Rohmann’s illustrations make this cumulative story come alive. Jungle animals try to escape a hole and are rescued by Elephant. Get the kids to chant along as you read this one, there are plenty of opportunities for it!

Bear Says Thanks– Karma Wilson

Bear is back and this time his woodland pals all bring food to share. Bear has only hospitality and stories to share, and it is, of course, enough. Perfect for Thanksgiving or even Christmas storytimes.

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