I’ve been forgetting to blog my storytimes since the summer session started! But here is this week’s theme: Chickens. We are actually doing this theme with the Little Red Hen puppet show, so my other items only have to fill 20 minutes. Family storytime is my favorite! Here is what I chose:
After intros and host puppet, etc. we will be starting with Chickens to the Rescue by John Himmelman. I love this book, and the kids love to yell “CHICKENS TO THE RESCUE!!”
Then we have a flannel of Five Little Chicks:
Then we are going to read Is Everone Ready for Fun? by Jan Thomas. Jan Thomas is one of my ultimate favorites, especially for tandem reading in storytime.
Then we have another flannel, based on Hattie and the Fox:
Then we’re bringing in Hungry Hen by Richard Waring in case we have extra time. It’s silly!
There are a lot of good chicken books, but I haven’t done these in a while, so that’s what we’re doing! 🙂
I now get paid enough to get yelled at. Not that I didn’t get yelled at before, but now I feel like it’s my responsibility to deal with the angry patrons rather than leave them to my coworkers that are assistants and make less. Last week we had a very popular program for preschool age kids with a very limited amount of space. The program started at 10:30; we ran out of tickets at about 10:05. We did this program two days in a row, so the first day was easy. After we filled up, we could tell people to try back the next day, and most of them were okay with that.
The next day we filled up at 10:02. People were very upset. We went ahead and started the program early since everyone was already there. My coworker went in to start the program at about 10:15, and I stayed out to work the desk and deal with the continuing stream of families coming in for the program, telling them all until about 10:45 that it was full. Many of the parents argued with me, told me that it was “dumb,” “ridiculous,” and even “obnoxious” (and yes, including parents that arrived 15 minutes after the program was supposed to start). Finally, it seemed like I was done breaking the news to people.
The families that didn’t get in to the program all stayed in the children’s area, watched the program through the glass doors, and grumbled to each other about how unfair it was. One by one, the parents and grandparents that hadn’t argued with me when they first came in started coming up and yelling at me. Now, I can generally handle a couple of complainers no problem, but after literally an hour of dealing with this, I was pretty mentally exhausted. I mean, I understand that people were disappointed, but it was stated in the brochure and online that the program was limited, so they should have been prepared for the possibility that it would be full. And even if they didn’t see that, you would think that some people could be a little more understanding about it. It was the first time we had offered the program, so now we know to create a registration if we do it again.
We did end up running the program again immediately after it was over for those that had stayed. I work in a pretty rich, privileged suburb, so this is the kind of thing we have to deal with on a regular basis. A couple of months ago, a lady came in with her daughter five minutes before an hour long craft program was supposed to finish, and she told me I didn’t understand and wouldn’t let them in because I don’t have kids of my own. I mean, honestly. Anyway, as I was saying, as an introvert, I can send out enough energy to handle this kind of onslaught for only so long. I desperately needed a break to de-compress. Then I managed to face the rest of the day.
Of course, because this is my luck, as I was closing the door that evening at closing time, a girl wanted to come in. I told her we were closed. She said she just needed one thing, but it was already after the final closing announcement, almost everyone was gone, and the computers were shut down, so there was nothing I could do. She got mad at me and kicked the leaves on the ground on the way back to her mom’s car. I closed the door to the library and on that horrible day! UGH
Wolves is a hard theme to do for family storytime, because some of the younger kids might find some of the stories a little too scary. It’s important to keep a light tone! Anyway, here’s what we used tonight:
The Wolf’s Chicken Stew by Keiko Kasza is a classic!
Wolf’s Coming! by Koe Kulka is a little scary, but it has a fun, silly ending.
I am So Strong by Mario Ramos is about a really cocky wolf, and another one with a little bit of a silly ending.
Let’s Play in the Forest While the Wolf is Not Around by Claudia Bueda is fun for family storytime, because the kids can easily catch on to the song and sing with you. Plus it starts with the wolf putting on his underpants, so after that, they think everything is hilarious.
Five White and Fluffy Sheep
The Singing Chick
(I really like this one, but you have to be willing to be dramatic!)
Other good Wolf Books:
Tonight’s storytime theme is Noise! Noise is a fun theme, there are a lot of good books for this one, so here are the ones I’m using:
My coworker at my old position at another branch had a great idea to go along with Chicks Run Wild by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen. When ever she turned the page to the part where the chicks would run wild, I would turn on some kind of crazy music to go with it. It was really fun. Then at the end, when Mama goes wild, we had something like Kenny G. or something play, which of course the kids didn’t always fully understand, but the parents thought was hilarious.
Shout! Shout it Out! by Denise Fleming is really fun to have them shout along with you, as long as you keep control of the chaos. I’m going to do this one right before we stand up to do some music so that if it gets a little too crazy, we can dance and then sit down again after that.
Any of the Dinosaur vs. books will work for noise, but I like Dinosaur vs. The Library by Bob Shea in particular since he goes into storytime at the end. And I will just say that I love Bob Shea in general. Anything Bob Shea, I will use!
The Little Little Girl with the Big Big Voice by Kristen Belauch is a nice, short book to end my family storytime with. By that time, the little ones are usually starting to get a little restless. For this book, I usually add in the girl’s voice since she doesn’t actually have any words in the book. I just add in a “HI” or something similar. It’s a cute one.
Who Said “Moo?” is a pretty simple flannel. I also plan to use one called”Pardon?” Said the Giraffe. I didn’t get a picture of that one, but it’s based on this book:
Other good Noise Books:
Rock-a-Baby Band by Kate McMullan (you can use the music and shakers with this one)
Farmyard Beat by Lindsey Craig
Punk Farm by Jarrett Krosoczka
Say What? by Angela Diterlizzi
Yip! Snap! Yap! by Charles Fuge
Tanka Tanka Skunk by Steve Webb (clap or pat with the rhythm)
Who Said “Coo?” by Deborah Ruddell
The Baby Beebee Bird by Diane Redfield Massie
Clip Clop by Nicola Smee (I love this book and will use for anything it will even remotely work for)