Tag Archives: letter knowledge

Flannel(ish) Friday: Alpha-gator

30 Aug

So there I was, casually perusing the Flannel Friday pinterest board on “animals” looking for some new ideas, and I came across this post by Miss Tara.  I was immediately inspired to make my own alphabet-eating alligator. I thought ever-so-briefly about cutting a hole in my alligator puppet’s mouth (NOT advised) and then started thinking of other ways to create my own alpha-gator.  I thought about HOW LONG it would take me to cut out all of those letters and that I wanted to use my gator next week. What’s the solution? MAGNET LETTERS. I have some I got from the Target dollar section (can I get three cheers for the Target dollar section?) and haven’t been able to use them yet.

My first attempt at a 3D gator was an unmitigated disaster. Two cardboard tubes covered in green felt, with one end cut to look like an alligator mouth, ended up looking like a snake with a weight problem who had been left in the dryer while wet. So I went 2D.

Here’s my gator and letters:

gator

The gator is laminated and has magnets stuck on the back. My plan is to stick him on a cookie sheet (I’ve ordered a magnet/white board from Lakeshore) and then, as he eats each letter, stick them on his tummy. I like that the kids will still be able to see the letters, as the shapes are referenced in the poem.  There are a few too many letters so they’ll have to be piled up a bit.

Now, this is still a work in progress because I’ve discovered that my letters don’t have very strong magnets. I’ve also ordered some of those via Lakeshore in hopes they’ll be better. If they aren’t, well, I’ll have to re-think this whole shebang.

Hope the Alpha-gator’s hungry!

The Library Lady is hosting our round-up today. To see all past flannels, visit the pinterest page via the icon to the right.

Happy flanneling!

Ukulele in Storytime: BINGO!

5 Feb

Hi all! Because I love you, I decided to make a fool of myself share what I’ve learned about playing ukulele in storytime in a series of videos. I know lots of folks who are seasoned uke-ists (not a word) and some who are new to the instrument.  I’m somewhere in between, and I hope this will help those newbies gain some confidence in their skills and ROCK OUT in storytime – the kids love it and we all know how important singing is to early literacy skills development!

Here’s the first installment: BINGO! Kids, librarians and teachers alike all know and love this song, and it’s pretty easy to play on the ukulele. In the video I’ll share the chord fingering**, demonstrate playing the song, and show you my fun flannelboard.  I learned which chords to use at this awesome site.

Please excuse the poor lighting and the video quality. I’m no videographer – remember, I did this because I LOVE YOU and want your storytime to be the best it can be!

**What I call an A major chord in the video is actually an A MINOR. Whoops!

 

Bingo was his name-o.

Look for Flip Flap Jack (Aiken Drum) next – the chords I found on the site above were strange, so I figured out my own!

Flannel Friday: Bug Board

16 Mar

After a week’s hiatus, I’m glad to be back with a VERY simple board idea for y’all.

A few weeks ago, I found myself browsing the $1 bins at Target (as I am wont to do ) and I discovered bags of plastic bugs. This was fortuitous, as the timing coincided perfectly with my annual bug storytime. I picked up a couple (each had different bugs) and decided what to do with them.

I put a small piece of velcro on the back of each:

I made a felt/paint label for each bug.

I told the kids we were going to figure out what the bugs are, and then put their names with them. I keep the bugs hidden and give them clues to guess what they are:

  • Likes to visit picnics. Is small, sometimes black, and sometimes red (ANT)
  • Makes honey (BEE)
  • Hops; is long and green (GRASSHOPPER)
  • Flies around our houses in summer, bothers us, and lands on our food (FLY)
  • Is long and green and arms sometimes go together like this [praying motion] (PRAYING MANTIS)
  • Flies around the water; has long skinny body and wide wings. Sometimes blue. (DRAGONFLY)
  • Has eight legs (SPIDER)
  • Red with black spots (LADYBUG)
  • Lives where it’s hot; has pinchers and a long tail with a stinger on it (SCORPION)

They don’t always guess all of them, but they guessed many. I did have a few kids who were able to guess the harder ones, even!

When we’ve guessed, we put the bug on the board and add it’s name. This was a great print recognition/awareness activity as we talked about which names were longer, which had only 3 letters (Bee, Fly, Ant) and how Praying Mantis has two words in its name. I run my finger under the words from left to right. Several kids commented on first letters (“Hey! That B is my name!”).

In short, this was a fun, easy-to-make activity that the kids really seemed to enjoy. The moral of the story? ALWAYS check the Target dollar bins.

Today’s Flannel Friday roundup is being hosted by Angela at Valley Storytime. Check it out for all the flannel-y goodness! All past flannels are pinned on pinterest (click the felt words to the right) and all of MY past posts can be found under the tab above.

Happy flanneling!

Sesame Street does Glee to help kids learn about the letter G! You’re Welcome.

22 Sep

Sesame Street does a spot-on spoof of the TV show Glee, all in the name of helping kids learn the sound that the letter G makes. Letter knowledge at its finest! Early literacy learning FTW! What kid isn’t going to go away from this knowing that G can make two different sounds?

The Sleepy Little Alphabet: A Bedtime Story from Alphabet Town by Judy Sierra

24 Nov

When planning an early literacy storytime, letter knowledge is the hardest skill match up with books that work in a group setting.  Alphabet books often lack a cohesive plot, and are better for one-on-one sharing than as storytime fare.  Enter Judy Sierra’s The Sleepy Little Alphabet.  This darling book, with energetic mixed-media illustrations by Melissa Sweet, tells the story of the lower-case letters of the alphabet (the upper case ones are the parents) getting ready for bed.  Each letter’s activities are described in rhyming sentences that include the letter sound at least once (and sometimes more often): “f is full of fidgety wiggles.  G has got the googly giggles.” The text is printed in a bright color that contrasts the background (making it easier to see and reinforcing print awareness), and the letters themselves are printed in a larger size than the rest of the text.  Every child can relate to the nighttime activities happening in this book, and will have tons of fun learning about letters and their sounds.  I, personally, am just so excited to have an alphabet book to add to my bedtime stories theme!  Judy Sierra, the amazing author of such wonderful book treats as Wild About Books and Preschool to the Rescue, gives us another reason to snuggle together and read!

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