My toddler/preschool storytime just so happened to fall on Valentine’s Day, so of course that was our theme for the week.
OPENING SONG: We Hit the Floor Together
OPENING RHYME: This is Big Big Big
Sweet Hearts by Jan Carr, Illustrated by Dorothy Donohue. This sweet little rhyming book tells of a little panda bear who hides Valentines all around the house for his family to find. I really love Donohue’s collage illustrations. However, I have to admit that there is something that the book loses while reading it aloud (at least, reading it aloud to a relatively large group.) This might just be one of those books that does better in a one-on-one setting.
Since the book featured hiding Valentines, we played our shape game with a Valentine hiding behind one of the shapes. The kids like this game, but I think maybe I should only use it a few weeks at a time, or maybe change up the colors/shapes every once in a while.
Hug a Bug, by Eileen Spinelli, Illustrated by Dan Andreasen. Have you ever thought about what a difference a hug can make? This story is about a girl who goes around hugging everyone and everything in sight! She hugs books, her pillow, the mailman, and even–yes, a bug! She even dares to hug a grouch, who is so affected by the gesture that he begins to hug everything too! This is a nice, straightforward book. It has a sweet message, and I think the kids enjoyed it.
Snuggle Puppy by Sandra Boynton. As with many of Boynton’s books, Snuggle Puppy can be (and perhaps should be) sung instead of read aloud. I dressed up my puppy puppet (Dottie) with red hair ribbons, and she sang Snuggle Puppy. If you’re not sure how it should be sung, check this out to get an idea: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxbeoIU9B54. I still think this was a cute idea, but I was a little insecure about it. I think it would have helped if my puppet had a moveable mouth.
Next, I did the flannelboard based on My Froggy Valentine by Matt Novak. This flannelboard was first done by Miss Cate at Storytiming, then modified by Miss Sarah at Read it Again! I just LOVELOVELOVE the idea of making felt pieces reversible! I did this story minus one of the frogs, and I used Miss Sarah’s idea of having a toadstool (I, too, was influenced by Super Mario Bros. as a child, perhaps unduly so…) Anyway, this was an absolute hit! In fact, it warmed up the crowd a bit, so that I felt comfortable sharing one more book…
How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You? By Jane Yolen and Mark Teague. Although dinosaurs can be very temperamental, when they give hugs and kisses and give their irresistible dinosaur smiles, all is forgiven. This book, like the other “How Do Dinosaurs…?” books, is beautifully illustrated, and the situations are so cute and funny that it’s hard not to love them. Bonus: The obvious parallels between toddlers and dinosaurs made a few of the parents laugh knowingly, which of course made me laugh, too!
CLOSING RHYME: My hands say thank you