Storytime Norms: Now with picture clues!

29 Aug

I have learned so much about group management from the preschool teachers I work with. I know the right words to use with preschoolers, and I always try to phrase things in a way that is less negative (“don’t do that!”) and more positive (“I need you to stop”). One of the best things I’ve seen, though, are the little picture cards they use to reinforce behaviors. These are frequently used with children on the Autism Spectrum, but work with any child who needs a little reminder of the task at hand. It’s also extremely handy when you’ve got non-english speaking kids in the group and you’re not able to communicate effectively with them. A picture really IS worth a thousand words!

This year I decided to make my own list of storytime “rules” along with their visual cues. I will carry it with me to all storytimes, and will go over it with the kids during our first storytime of the year. After that, if I need to remind someone that they need to be listening, I can just point to the picture.  I will have the list nearby, posted, so folks can see it at all times. Based on the storytimes I had today (first time I used the picture cues), trust me, it works!

Here’s the document I created. Our graphics department laminated it, and the back side is in Spanish.

Here’s a link to the PDF version if you’d like to print and use it. Page 2 of this document is the Spanish version.

Storytime rules

6 Responses to “Storytime Norms: Now with picture clues!”

  1. clevinso August 31, 2011 at 10:52 pm #

    I think I’ll try something like this too. Last session, my preschoolers were an unruly bunch. Now I just need to translate them into Polish, Bulgarian, Russian, Gujarati, Arabic, and Urdu. Then my storytimers will all be covered language-wise. 🙂

  2. Jill August 31, 2011 at 4:01 pm #

    Mary, what an awesome way to let children know what to expect and what is expected of them! Being in a library setting, often kids come to storytime who have never had group learning experiences and this is a really effective tool! I’m going to use it!

    Thanks! Jill

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Ask a Storytime Ninja: Parent Behavior | Storytime Underground - October 1, 2013

    […] is going over our expectations at the beginning of storytime and using rule cards inspired by Miss Mary Liberry to help the kids AND parents remember. Yup, it’s mostly for the kids, but we’ve used it […]

  2. First Ask a Storytime Ninja Question! | Storytime Underground - July 21, 2013

    […] I borrowed an idea from Miss Mary Liberry that she called described in an August blog post Storytime Norms: Now With Picture Cues. This was an excellent way to introduce “rules of conduct” as a concept. The first day, we […]

  3. Another Year of Toddler Time | ALSC Blog - January 1, 2013

    […] we need to make. Then we go over the “rules cards”. These were inspired by Miss Mary Liberry and have come in really handy in keeping the chaos level down! We make sure to go over each rule […]

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