At my other new job, I am not Supreme Coordinator of All Things Tween. I am more like Children's Librarian Who Has to Work the Worst Schedule. BUT, I get to do storytimes again - something I have missed while finishing school, working in a paraprofessional position, and then being Tween Queen. Unfortunately, I'll only be required for two storytimes a month, but some is better than none, right?
For better or worse, my themes for the spring have already been chosen for me. My first theme was basically my worst nightmare: birds. I HATE BIRDS. I don't think I can express accurately my utter disgust of these evil winged beasts. But, for the sake of my young patrons, I tried to overcome my extreme bias and create a fun storytime for them. Here's what I did.
Welcome - this is pretty self-explanatory. This is the part where I introduce myself, remind parents to turn off their phones and participate, and plead with them about keeping the younger ones out of our blinds (why?? Why do people who design libraries put the noisiest accesories in the storytime room?).
Opening - Open Shut Them. This was pretty much the first little rhyme I learned for storytime; it's tried and true.
Book - Birds by Kevin Henkes. I love Kevin Henkes and this is a very simple book that introduces our topic nicely.
Flannel - "Five Birds in the Nest". Can I make a confession? I really don't like flannel stories. Firstly, I hate the feel of felt. Second, I think most flannel is old and boring. So, I only did this because it's basically a requirement to have a flannel in storytime and this was basically the only option at our library.
Book - Bring on the Birds by Susan Stockdale. I found out about this one from reading a librarian blog and read it immediately. It's a very simple non-fiction picture book that might have worked better one on one. The kids were interested in all the different kinds of birds, but the labels for the birds are all together on the last pages and difficult to see in a large group setting. I really wanted to use some non-fiction, though, especially since it's so easy with this theme.
Song - "The Chicken Dance." Yes, that one. I thought this was basically a stroke of genius but, honestly, it kinda went over the kids' heads. The crowd was mostly younger ones and they just watched me do the dance. A couple of older kids in the crowd clearly had done the dance before and were relishing in being little experts.
Book - Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard. I thought the kids would react to this book a lot more than they did. Maybe my grumpy voice needs work (not if you ask my boyfriend, though).
Book - Chicken Little by Rebecca Emberley, illustrated by Ed Emberley. I tried to do my best voices for this one and the kids seemed to enjoy it - however, this version of the story has, in my opinion, a weird ending.
Big Book - A Mother for Choco by Keiko Kazsa. This wasn't my ideal choice for a big book because it's a little long and not all that bird-focused. But I actually think this was the biggest hit of storytime - the kids were totally rapt with attention and really enjoyed it.
Closing - Wave Goodbye. This is a Rob Reid rhyme that I just basically picked at random.
And that is my version of a bird-themed storytime!