I recently saw a post on School Library Journal’s website about the top 100 children’s novels. I began to look at the list and realized I have only read two of the 100 titles. Yeah, I’m ashamed to say I work at a library in the children’s area. So, I have decided to challenge myself to read all 100 books along with my fellow co-worker and awesome friend, Seth. We haven’t really set a time line yet due to the fact that I don’t have a lot of free time with a toddler running around. On a side note, she got very upset when I was trying to read Charlotte’s Web last night. So upset that she sat on top of my chest while I was lying on the bed so I could not see the pages. Anways, I finished the book today! Go me! It of course is both a sad and amazing story about a spider and a pig who find friendship. Hey Seth, how far along are you? Only 99 more to go! On to, A Wrinkle in Time.
I have been going through our cd collection we have for our library and picking out my favorite songs and putting them on my computer. This way I can burn a personal cd with all of my favorite ST songs. Genius right? I know, this way I won’t have to be searching everywhere for the 3 cd’s I need for ST that day. Plus I even found some new songs that I’m really excited to use. One person’s music that I absolutely love to use is Jim Gill’s.I saw him several years ago in person and he was amazing. The children all loved him (and his awesome banjo). His music is modern which makes a huge difference. I also use Dr. Jean sometimes, but a lot of her songs don’t speak to me like Jim’s. Raffi has a few good ones as well. So please, listen to some Jim Gill cds if you never have, I promise you won’t be disappointed!
Over the last few weeks I’ve attended a couple of training programs geared towards the 0-5 crowd. I learned so much stuff that I’m anxious to try in my ST that will be in our new library. I figured now would be the perfect time to mix it up a little bit and try some new things.
The first thing I’m really excited about trying is sign language. I already do it with my 19 month old daughter, so many of the signs are familiar to me. It’s a whole other language that I think is great for children to learn. Not only does it help them communicate to you what they want, but it also helps with their fine motor skills. I’m amazed at the things my daughter can sign. I went to a class while I was pregnant with her that talked about signing with babies. I was skeptical but figured, hey why not try it. We started when she was about 8 months old just doing a few signs with her. When she was about a year old all of a sudden it clicked, and now she signs daily. It really is amazing.
Another thing I’m really excited to try is more music. I already use lots of songs in ST but I want to spice them up a bit, and even try some new ones. Our library recently purchased some egg shakers that will be perfect to use. The kids can shake along to the music which makes it that much more enjoyable for them (and for me). I also learned how easy it is to incorporate “fillers” into songs. We all have those songs we would love to try in ST, but there’s always that long awkward pause where there is just music playing and not much else going on. So why not make up silly stuff to do along with it during the down time such as tap your shoulders (fast, slow etc.), jump up and down. You get the idea. It’s such a simple concept, yet I didn’t even think of it. My good friend Kendra who works at a library in Oregon was really excited about this too (she didn’t think of it either).
I also decided I wanted to come up with some new themes. I’ve been using the same ones and rotating them out for 4 years now. I stole the great idea of just doing an alphabet ST from my wonderful co-worker Miss Leona. So week one will be stuff all based on the letter “A”, week two will be the letter “B” and so forth. This will give me a chance to be much more flexible and find some new and even better books to share in ST.
So those a just a few new ideas I am going to incorporate into my weekly ST session. I’m really excited to try them all!
I have decided to change my blog entirely (not that I used it much anyways). It will now be a more library based storytime guide. My main focus is preschool storytime (ST) and I will update with different themes I use during ST. It will be a nice reminder of what worked or didn’t work and I hope it can help other people out there as well. I was browsing some ST blogs yesterday and I only found a couple that I will visit regularly, which gave me the idea to start my own! So here it is people of the world! Oh, and our library is moving to a new building in the upcoming month, so you won’t see a whole lot from me right now. I do promise there will be more to come, so keep your eyes open!