Here is my explanation of how I do preschool storytime in my library. We do storytimes in 6 week sessions during the different seasons (spring, summer, winter, and fall). We offer Baby ST and Elementary ST on Tuesdays, Preschool ST on Wednesdays (mine) and Thursdays (Seth’s), and Toddler ST on Fridays. Out of all our STs the preschool ones are the most attended, which is why we offer them for 2 days. We used to have them twice on each day but due to budget cuts we are now down to only one. Although, this summer I am opening mine up to two sessions, we’ll just be too dang busy not to. Also, last year we decided to start doing drop-in storytimes and what a difference they have made! When we would have people sign up, we would call and remind them, then they would never show. It was frustrating because there were other people who still wanted to come to storytime but couldn’t. So, I made some passes for each ST and laminated them. When we open in the morning is when we start passing them out. For most of the STs we limit each to 20 passes, and only give them to the children who are in that age group for the ST. I usually end up with around 40 people total.
Here is a view of our storyroom that I just LOVE. And just look at that rug, isn’t it cute? My good friend Kenna designed it years ago in a Demco contest and won!
Also, take a look at our ceiling tiles!
Ok, ok, back to my ST overview. I begin with welcoming all the kids and asking them how they are. We then learn a few ASL signs that go with our theme for that week. This is something I started fairly recently and the kids love it. We then sing and dance to Jim Gill’s Let’s Celebrate. During the parts where he says to wait, we do the sign for wait, so much fun! Next is Little Mouse. I’m sure many of you know of Little Mouse, but if you don’t here’s how it goes. We have 9 different colored houses on the flannelboard and I tell the kids I will only choose someone to pick a color if they are very quiet. Surprisingly they do a good job with that! Say the child picks red, we then say the rhyme: Little Mouse, Little Mouse are you in the red house? Then I pull back the red house and we look behind to see if he’s there. This continues until we actually find Little Mouse, of course. I have always done this in ST and the kids LOVE it so much. If I ever forget to do it, they definitely remind me. Wow, my phone takes some pretty bad pics, sorry! But you get the idea.
Then I read the first story, after that is a song, then another story, sometimes a flannelboard rhyme, another song, and if there is time we read one more story. But I usually stick to two books. We then sing our goodbye rhyme:
On my face I have a nose, and way down here I have ten toes. I have two eyes that I can blink, and I have a head to help me think. I have a chin and very near I have two ears to help me hear. I have a mouth that I use to speak, and when I run I use my feet. I have two arms to hold up high, and here’s a hand to wave goodbye! Then we talk about the craft for that day and the kids sit with their parents and enjoy making it. I love the way we handle crafts in our library. If there are things that need to be cut out, we have some great teen volunteers who will do that for us saving us so much time. We have these WONDERFUL trays we bought from Oriental Trading and they are perfect for all the kids to do their crafts on. We put the craft pieces on them prior to ST and when it’s time to make them the kids pick one up and go sit on the floor with their family. It’s very nice not having to worry about tables and chairs. So there is preschool storytime in a nutshell, hope you enjoyed!