Family Storytime – 5/18/19 – FOOD 

Family Storytime – 5/18/19 – FOOD 

  • Song – Top of the Morning
    • 61ajpd9lpcl._sx409_bo1204203200_This is a fun tune and great for waking up and doing a little stretching. It’s called Top of the Morning.
  • Hello Rhyme – Say Hello
    • This is a great rhyme for saying hello because we get to do it in so many fun ways!
  • Stretch – Simon Says
    • We did about three rounds to help get us warmed up.
  • Rhyme – Toast in the Toaster 
    • This is a fun one for babies and my more mobile kids. For babies you keep them in your lap and for the older ones you let them jump up at the end.

Toast in the toaster
Getting very hot! 
Tick-tock, tick-tock

Up you pop! 

  • Book – Hannah’s Tall Order: an A to Z Sandwich by Linda Vander HeydenThis is a newer one for the library and I sort of love it. The rhyme is very familiar, almost Dr. Seuss and I love when she sends the sandwich back at the end. Also a fun way to learn about new foods.
  • Rhyme/Scarves – Popcorn Kernels  
    • I’ve done this one with my babies before. Use a scarf and it is even more fun.

Popcorn kernels, popcorn kernels (Squish your scarf up in your hands!) 
In the pot, in the pot
Shake them, shake them, shake them! (Shake them up!) 
Shake them, shake them, shake them!
‘Til they pop! ‘Til they pop! (Throw your scarf up in the air and catch it on the way down!) 

  • Song/Scarves – Spaghetti Legs by Raffi 41hrfxf3r0l._sx342_
    • We continued to use our scarves to identify our body parts with this song.
  • Book – Little Pea by Amy Krouse Rosenthal 
    • This is a small book for a big group but great for a food theme because it turns our favorite foods on their heads. Candy is icky and Spinach is deeeeelish!
  • Song – On top of spaghetti by Tom Glazer 
    • I am making my crew use their voices with this one. We are going to do it as a repeat after me. I will sing the line and then they sing after.
  • Rhyme – Apples and Bananas  
    • Then we sang this gem of a song. Which is great for phonetic awareness for the littler guys and for learning about vowels with the bigger guys.
  • Book – The Watermelon Seed by Greg Pizzoli 
    • I LOVE doing this one because you can really get into the acting side of things. I love pretending that I’ve swallowed a watermelon seed and am freaking out. I may have more fun with it then my audience.
  • Rhyme/Puppets – Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar? 
    • I did this one with puppets. I had my cookie jar (box) and my animal puppets inside. Then I brought each one and the crowd helps me find the cookie thief… hint- It’s the dinosaur!

Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar?
______________ stole the cookie from the cookie jar.
“Who me?”
Yes, you!
“Couldn’t be.”
Then who?

  • Song/Shakers –  Happy Feet by Joanie Bartels 51knirgafgl._sx399_bo1204203200_
    • I like to break out the shakers at the end of storytime otherwise I have to scream over shakers the whole time. But boy, do we love our shaking!
  • Movement Exercise – If You’re Happy and You Know It
    • I tell the kids that I want to know how happy they are.
  • Rhyme – Say Goodbye
    • This is the same rhyme we started with, so the new guys are familiar with it by the end of storytime.
  • Song – Clean It Up! by The Laurie Berkner Band
    • Everyone helps put our shakers away.
  • Song – Goodbye, So Long, Farewell my Friends by Music Together
    • I always put this one on as I go to open the door. Its a nice, slow, peaceful song to wind down on.

How’d it go:

The parents indulged me with their singing, so I only forced them to do three verses of the meatball song. They sounded like I was torturing them, so I nixed the second half. Ha! I thought it was only fair for them to sing since I am the one always doing the sing/shouting. Other than that this was a great storytime!

That’s all for now!



Blastoff with a good book!

Hi Guys,

Normally, I don’t post when I reuse a display but since this month is light without my storytime posts, I figured I’d share.

As a public librarian, being able to save and re-use displays is a big $$$ and time saver. It is also good for the environment, right?

Blastoff with a good book is a display that I put up a few years ago. I was able to save my rocket from the original display and everything else was pretty easy to recreate. If you want to take a look at my original post for more details, click on the link above.

This is the perfect bulletin board for our Summer Read and Learn program, which is right around the corner. This year the theme is all about space!

That’s all for now!


The Lost Girls of Paris

The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff is an adult historical fiction novel by the same author of The Orphan’s Tale.

It’s 1946 in New York City, the war is over and Grace Healey is attempting to rebuild her life after losing her husband. One morning, running late to work, Grace is passing through Grand Central Station when she trips over an unattended suitcase. Unable to ignore her curiosity, she looks through the bag and finds photographs of twelve women. In the moment, Grace grabs the photos and goes on her way.

Later, Grace learns that the suitcase belongs to the recently deceased, Eleanor Trigg, the leader of a group of female secret agents, sent to infiltrate occupied Paris before the start of the war. She become obsessed with finding the truth of Eleanor and the girl’s stories.

And so begins the story of Grace as she hunts for the truth, Eleanor as she creates and runs the resistance, and Marie, one of the female operators who never came home.

This was a good story but, I must be reading too much historical fiction lately, because my feelings toward it are only so-so.

One of the main problems I had with the book was that the story-lines, specifically Marie’s, had no build up. I felt like there was a beginning and an ending but no middle. I understand that emotions run high during wartime but there really needed to be at least some relationship building. It was like a chunk of Marie’s story and even to some extent Eleanor’s story was left out.

I did like reading about the female agents, how they were recruited and trained and also how the men came to really rely on them. Women’s role in early conflicts are always interesting to learn about.

This one probably deserves more than three stars but for now, I am historical fiction-ed out.

That’s all for now!



Damsel by Elana K. Arnold is a young adult “fairy tale” with a dark edge.

Upon the death of the King, his son must face a dragon alone and bring back a damsel. On then can he become the next King of the realm. This is the way things have been done as far back as anyone can remember… Until now.

When Ama wakes in the arms of Prince Emory, she is unaware of the tradition. In fact, she is unaware of anything–who she was, where she came from. She has no recollection of her life prior to waking, naked, in the princes arms. Ama only knows what the prince has told her and when they return to his kingdom, she is celebrated as the damsel rescued from the terrible dragon.

As night falls in the kingdom, Ama has a feeling that not all is right. There is more to this story then she has been told. What is it that Ama doesn’t know and what cost will she pay to reveal it?

All I can really say about this one, was that it was not the book for me. I think it was meant to be this dark little tale about the subjection of women, with very overt metaphors about sexual dominance and abuse, but it just didn’t work for me.

I’ve never read anything by this author before, so maybe I am just not used to her writing style but I found the story awkward and at times forced. I was so surprised by this because I love a good twisty feminist tale and I thought this was going to be a good one, but, like I said, it was not the book for me.

When I started the book and was reading Emory’s narrative in the beginning, I just sat there wondering what on earth I was reading. Then Ama steps in as the protagonist and things did improve but not enough for me to really get into the story.

I feel like this is a love/hate sort of story. You are either going to love it or hate it and unfortunately, I lean toward the latter. This one gets a womp, womp 2 stars from me.

That’s all for now!


The Huntress

The Huntress by Kate Quinn is a historical fiction novel that jumps between three narratives that span pre/post WWII.

Brusque and bold Nina Markova grew up in the middle of nowhere in the Soviet Union. As soon as she can, she escapes her hometown and flees to Moscow, where she learns to fly. When war approaches, she joins the infamous Night Witches, an all-female night bomber regiment, where she thrives. When her plane goes down behind enemy lines, Nina must fight to survive, a fight that gets even harder when she comes across a Nazi murderess known as The Huntress.

British war correspondent Ian Graham, has seen it all and now that that war is over, he has given up writing to track and capture Nazi war criminals. But one target has eluded him, The Huntress, and for him, this hunt is personal.

Seventeen-year-old Jordan McBride grows up in post WWII Boston, and is expected to marry her high school sweetheart and keep house but all she wants to do is to become a photographer. When her dad brings home a fiancé, a German widow with secrets, Jordan is suspicious. Armed only with her camera and her head, Jordan investigates her step-mother-to-be at the risk of her father’s happiness.

In a story that spans over ten years and multiple continents, The Huntress is a story full of twists and turns.

When I first started this one, I had just finished a few other historical fiction novels and was sort of over the past/present narrative. But after a few eyerolls because of that, I got over it and really got into the story.

Overall, the story was fine. It was entertaining and I liked how everything intertwined. But I LOVED the Night Witches and Nina’s story. This was a part of history, I wasn’t aware of and getting a glimpse at this all female bomber group was fantastic. I could have read a whole book just on Nina.

I also liked Jordan’s story and the way she grows throughout, but mostly the way she thinks. I was not as impressed with Ian’s narrative. It just didn’t catch my interested as much and I found myself just wanting to get through it to get back to the women.

The Huntress is probably not my favorite historical fiction, but it did keep my interest. This one gets 3.5 stars from me.

That’s all for now!


Small Spaces

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden is a 5th-6th grade mystery for those juveniles who enjoy a good scare.

After suffering the loss of her mother, eleven-year-old Ollie, pulls away from everyone but her dad and her books. So when she comes across a crazy woman about to throw a book into the creek, she grabs the book and runs. As she begins to read the small book, Ollie is enthralled in the story until she begins to wonder if it is in fact, just a story.

When Ollie and her class go on a fieldtrip to an old farm, she starts to notice similarities to the book she was reading. As night begins to fall, the school bus breaks down and the mist thickens. Something isn’t right and Ollie knows it, so when the creepy bus driver tells the kids that they “Best get moving. At nightfall they’ll come for the rest of you.” She listens to the advice of her mom’s broken watch and she RUNs.

As Ollie and her two classmates run into the woods, they realize they are being followed and so the hunt begins.

I really enjoyed Arden’s Bear and the Nightingale series, so when I saw she wrote a juvenile ghost story, I had to give it a go. I am not drawn to scary books, but I’ve had quite a few readers advisory questions for them lately, so I picked this one up. And I’ll admit, there was a point where this book actually gave me the shivers.

I don’t know that I would recommend reading this one before bed but I think my horror buffs would definitely enjoy it. We get all our classic elements of horror: the supernatural, a creepy backstory, the buildup, a ghostly protector, a villain, a mystery to solve and more.

Ollie is a strong female character. She doesn’t care what anyone thinks and primarily keeps to herself. She does have her flaws. She pushes people away and jumps to conclusions. But she also knows what’s right and wrong and will help someone in trouble.

If nothing else, this one gets 5 stars for being a juvenile book that is actually spooky. I’d totally recommend Small Spaces to 5th+ grade boys and girls who like a good scare.

That’s all for now!


Baby Storytime: 4/29/19

Baby Storytime: 4/29/19

  • Movement Rhyme – Wake Up…
    • This is a fun stretch to get our bodies moving before storytime. And it is great for babies because it helps us identify our body parts. I got the lyrics from Jbrary but I’ve seen this one around before.
  • Wake up feet, wake up feet
    Wake up feet and wiggle, wiggle, wiggle
    Wake up feet, wake up feet
    Wake up and wiggle in the morning.

    (Also: hands, ears, knees, fingers, hips, etc.)

  • ASL Baby Signs – MORE / ALL DONE / PLEASE51budem4cql._sy498_bo1204203200_
    • I’ve decided that for the babies, instead of teaching them a rhyme in sign language, that I am going to start teaching three vocabulary words each time. I generally use Baby Sign to check my signs.
  • Song – Hands are for clapping by Jim Gill
    • I use this one a lot but it is just perfect for the babies and has such a good rhythm.
  • Board Book – Whose Toes Are Those? by Jabari Asim
    • Simple rhyme and another way we can incorporate identifying our body parts and counting. I passed this one out to encourage one-on-one reading.
  • Stretch – This is…
    • I love this one. It’s so much fun to make the movements and it actually starts to get the kids thinking about opposites.

This is big big big Hold (arms out to side)
This is small small small (cup hands together)
This is short short short (hold hands with palms facing each other)
This is tall tall tall (reach one hand above head)
This is fast fast fast (circle fists quickly)
This is slow slow slow (circle fists slowly)
This is yes yes yes (nod)
This is no no no (shake head)

  • Rhyme – The Itsy Bitsy Spider 513ymb9ynrl._sy433_bo1204203200_
    • A classic but I love it when my regulars go from staring at me like I am crazy, to actually doing the movements.
  • Board Book/Puppets – Ten in the Bed by Gill Guile
    • I am SO excited to try this one. I am going to set up ten puppets on a cart and actually have them fall off as I read the story.
  • Song –  The Wheels on the Bus by Toddlers on Parade
    • My little guys all love this one.
  • Rhyme – I’m a little tea pot
    • This can be a fun one for babies because we tip them from side to side at the end.
  • Book – All of Baby, Nose to Toes by Victoria Adler
    • This is another one I found while I was weeding the other day. It’s got repetition and can be interactive with baby and caregiver.
  • Lift – Tick Tock, Tick Tock
    • This is a fun lapsit rhyme with a lift at the end as we “cuckoo!”

Tick tock, tick tock, I’m a little cuckoo clock.
Tick tock, tick tock, now it’s one o’clock.
Cuckoo! (Lift baby into the air)
Continue with two and three o’clock.

  • Bounce –  I Bounce You Here51ov7kguhdl._sx497_bo1204203200_
    • I love this that this one ends in a hug!

I bounce you here, I bounce you there
I bounce you, bounce you everywhere
I tickle you here, I tickle you there
I tickle you, tickle you everywhere
I hug you here, I hug you there
I hug you, hug you everywhere

  • Song/Shakers – Mr. Sun by Raffi
    • We do this one a lot. You know it. You love it. Shake to it!
  • Song/Bubbles – Splish Splash by Mr. AI
    • Kids love bubbles and they are great for strengthening the eye muscles that we later use for reading.
  • Goodbye Rhyme – Now It’s Time To Say Goodbye
    • This is to the tune of Mary Had a Little Lamb. I’ve seen it on a couple of sights and it is a nice one to end to. I think we will probably do the ASL sign for “goodbye” with it.

Now it’s time to say goodbye,
Say goodbye,
Say goodbye,
Now it’s time to say goodbye,
I’ll see you all next week.

  • Song – Clean It Up
    • Any good clean up song will work.
  • Song – Goodbye, So Long, Farewell by Music Together
    • I will always put this one on in the background as everyone leaves because I just love it!

How’d it go:

I picked a lot of my favorites here because Baby Storytime is going to take a month long break in May while we do school visits and get ready for the summer. So you may see me posting a little less next month but I will still try to get some fun things up.

That’s all for now!