Tag Archives: videos

Pete the Cat dances!

23 Jul

Like most children’s librarians, I am super excited for the new Pete the Cat book, Rocking in my School Shoes, which comes out next week. In anticipation, I give you: Pete, dancing, to creator Eric Litwin’s music.

Ribbit! Frog and Friends Storytime

17 Apr

One of the preschool teachers I work with LOVES frogs. Really, seriously, LOVES frogs. So every year I do a frog-themed storytime especially for her. Although, I do it for me too – there are so many great frog stories and songs out there! I call this one “Frog and Friends” because I might throw in a turtle or snake book too.

I have an awesome Folkmanis frog puppet; his name’s Freddy and he’s got long limbs and is very flaily. For some reason he speaks


with a southern accent (I think it stems from the New York librarian who used to tell “The Wide-Mouthed Frog” with a southern accent. And she was from Brooklyn). He introduces himself, shows off his amazing hopping ability, and then sits down to listen to stories about “him” (he’s not modest).

  • Big Frog Can’t Fit In by Mo Willems. POP-UP BOOK ALERT!! Poor big frog, she’s too big for her book, and that makes her sad. But she has great friends who find a solution.
  • Flannelboard/Song: “Little White Duck”. Originally sung by Burl Ives, lots of the preschool teachers don’t know this one – or haven’t used it in a while! It’s a great song, and while it’s not particularly interactive if the kids don’t know the song, for some reason when I sing it they’re hypnotized. Seriously. Dead quiet. I don’t know why. Try it out. I made flannelboard pieces of a duck, frog, bug, snake and lilypad which I put on the board one by one.
  • Frog in the Bog by Karma Wilson. Cool rhymes! Silly story! And the frog grows a little…bit…bigger.
  • Song: “5 Green and Speckled Frogs” Don’t we all know this one? I have a set of little frog finger puppets, and I made a log out of felt (glued in a tube shape) and a felt pond for them to jump into. I set the pond on the floor and the log on my knees, so I can play the tune on the ukulele.
  • Jump! Fischer, Scott. We end with this, and everyone gets up so they can jump at appropriate times. Lots of giggling ensues. I love this book.

Other books I might use:

Ribbit! Gotta hop now!

We’re Reading Dogs and Cats: A Storytime

1 Feb

Woof! Dog stories. Cat stories. Dog AND cat stories. Here are my picks for a Dog-tastic and Cat-tacular storytime!

I have a lovely chocolate lab puppy puppet, named Hershey,Daisy Kitty who introduces our theme. We talk about why he’s named after chocolate (his color) and if he can eat chocolate (NO WAY! POISON!). We’re going to read stories about dogs, but also some cats, too, because I have the lovely creature to the right living in my house and I’m a bit biased.

  • Masurel, Clare. A Cat and A Dog=Un gato y un perro. A very simple story of a cat and a dog that don’t get along, but the preschoolers love it. We try predicting what will happen when the dog’s ball gets stuck in the tree and the cat’s fish goes in the water.
  • Alborough, Jez. Some Dogs Do. Magical realism in a picture book! “Do dogs fly? Is it true? Some dogs don’t, and some dogs do.”
  • Flannelboard: BINGO. My post on this, and pictures of my flannelboard, here.
  • Dodd, Emma. I Don’t Want a Cool Cat. After reading this one, I follow it up with I Don’t Want a Posh Dog. This gives us the opportunity to compare the covers and talk about what’s the same (the girl), what’s different (one has a dog, the other a cat), and the author’s name on both books (building print awareness and learning about authors and illustrators!).

Other books I like and will trade out for some of the above:

  • Beaumont, Karen.Move Over, Rover! A great repeated line, perfect for little kids who want to help.
  • Gravett, Emily. Dogs. The way Gravett depicts the dog that barks is perfect!
  • Henkes, Kevin. Kitten’s First Full Moon=La primera luna llena de gatita. Beautiful, expressive black-and-white illustrations.
  • Himmelman, Jon. Katie Loves the Kittens. The illustrations/book size are a little small for a large group, but if you’ve got a smaller group, or are sharing with just one young person, this one is lovely. It’s so much fun to express Katie’s excitement: “AROOOOOO!!”

And, don’t forget, when you’re doing dog and cat storytime, you can always include Soft Kitty.  Although I’m kinda partial to this version, performed by a colleague of mine in Colorado.

Library of the Early Mind: a new documentary

23 Jul

I saw this posted by @mitaliperkins on twitter; it’s the trailer for a new documentary about children’s literature featuring such children’s lit luminaries as Mo Willems, Daniel Handler, Lois Lowry, Brian Pinkney, and others…

I can’t WAIT to see the full movie!

Goodness, no!

16 Jun

He loves his white shoes!

How did I miss this book? And how did I miss the video of these incredibly cute kids, reading said book?

I’m not sure the girl with the jellyfish headgear (what IS that thing?)  is actually READING the words of the story – she may have memorized it. But no matter, retelling a story, even if you’re not reading the words, exactly, is a pre-reading skill that kids need to develop.  She’s “reading” the pictures! You go, jellyfish-headgear-girl!  I also enjoy when jellyfish-headgear-girl’s backup singer chimes in with “goodness, no!”

*singing* I love my white shoes, I love my white shoes…

Sing a book! Jump! by Scott M. Fischer

11 Jun

Not the Van Halen version

Recently I chose a bunch of fun, recently-published books to share with the preschoolers. One of those was Jump!, by Scott M. Fischer.  When I read it silently, to myself, the first time, I heard it as a kind of twangy bluegrassy song.  It would be a perfect book to sing rather than read, and the children get to help out with the JUMP! refrain.

Singing in storytime (or anytime), whether you’re singing a book rather than reading it, or sharing an old favorite song, helps young children develop their phonological awareness.  Kids become better able to hear the smaller sounds that make up words, which is useful when sounding out words later.

After inventing my own tune for Jump!, I learned that Scott Fischer originally wrote it as a song.  Here, he performs it for a group of kids, and, oddly enough, it sounds very close to same song I heard in my head when I first read the book!

I especially love the Australian accent for the croc. After seeing this performance, I think Scott Fischer and I would be good friends.  Does anyone else think the cat looks like that little white kitty from the Aristocats?

One tiny quibble, though: on the “Sploosh!” page, if I hold it up so that the whale is at the bottom and the animals are splooshing up out of his blowhole, the word is upside down. The kids have noticed. But if I turn it over so the word is right-side up, it looks like the whale is upside down. Help!

%d bloggers like this: