Kitten’s First Full Moon, by Kevin Henkes. I LOOOOOVE this book! I actually purchased it for my own daughter before I became a children’s librarian, and it’s one of her favorites! I introduced it by reminding the kids that a kitten is a baby cat, and a full moon looks like a big circle. Since Kitten is a baby, she has never seen a full moon before, so she doesn’t quite know what to make of it. Of course they laughed like crazy on the first page when they heard that Kitten thought that the moon was a big bowl of milk! Throughout the book, Kitten jumps, runs, and climbs in her efforts to reach “that little bowl of milk in the sky,” but to no avail! This book is just so cute, and the kids really enjoyed it.
Flannelboard: When You’re Going to the Moon. This wonderful idea came from Mel’s Desk. To go along with it, we sang “When You’re Going to the Moon” to the tune of “If You’re Happy and You Know It.” Pre-K especially loved this activity. Thanks, Mel’s Desk!
The Sun is My Favorite Star, by Frank Asch. “Did you know that the sun is a star?” When I asked this question at pre-k, I mostly got yeses, but there were a few indignant NOs! out there. This is a beautifully illustrated, but rather quiet book. I was afraid that it might be *too* quiet, but it turned out okay for the most part. There were plenty of opportunities for discussion. For example, on the page that says “Sometimes [the sun] plays hide-and-seek with me” I asked them where the sun was hiding. They all guessed that it was behind the cloud, and we discussed the lines that come down from the cloud, called rays. All in all, I’m glad I added it, but if you’re reading it aloud to a group, you might want to make it your first selection and/or be sure to include plenty of opportunities for discussion/participation.
Roaring Rockets, by Tony Mitton and Ant Parker. This book is fantastic for introducing vocabulary and concepts for astronauts and space travel! While some of the words and concepts in this book may be unfamiliar to some children, the rhyming text and clear illustrations make it very accessible. I did make a minor change to the page about the countdown–we counted down from five instead of three, and we left out the word “Action!” I think that this was the kids’ favorite book of this storytime. They loved pointing things out, especially the Earth from the perspective of the moon.
Puppets/song: Five Little Aliens Went Out to Play. I had mixed feelings about including aliens in this storytime, but I ultimately decided to do it since aliens are so fun to imagine. I had the “mother alien” puppet already, and I made the babies by cutting heads out of felt, gluing on wiggle eyes and a felt mouth, and hot gluing them onto a glove. I found the song here. It is sung to the tune of “Five little ducks went out to play”
Five little aliens went out to play, over the moon to the milky way
Mother alien went “hep, hep, hep” (I had the kids make the alien noise)
But only four little aliens came back.
4, 3, 2, 1, 0…
After no little aliens came back, I had the mother alien look and look, and then she was sad. Then, she said “hep, hep, hep” and all five little aliens came back!
This was a very fun storytime, and I think it could work in whole or in part for our summer reading theme, Dream Big–READ!