Monthly Archives: April 2013

Crafternoon–repurposed CD fish, plus Fishin’ Fantasy THIS Saturday!


010In honor of Fishin’ Fantasy this Saturday, this week’s Crafternoon will be repurposed CD fish!  We had a lot of fun with this craft last year, and I’m excited to do it again!

Crafternoon will take place tomorrow (Tuesday, April 23) at the Leesburg Library and 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 25 at the Oakland Library.

Fishin’ Fantasy is this Saturday, Arpil 27 at Fox Creek Plantation on Gator Pond Road.  Tickets are $5.00 per person, with lunch included.  Each child (14 and under, please) must be accompanied by an adult.  Prizes include trophies and gifts, and each child will receive a free souvenir.  Best of all, all proceeds will benefit the Lee County Library!

Participants should meet at the Kinchafoonee Primary School front parking lot at 7:45 a.m. SHARP!  Tickets are available at the Lee County Chamber of Commerce.  For more information, call (229)759-2422.


Presenting….1000 Books Before Kindergarten!


002I am so excited to announce that the Lee County Library is launching its very own 1000 Books Before Kindergarten Club!  This program has been hugely successful at other libraries, and I can’t wait to see it flourish in our community!

What is it?

1000 Books Before Kindergarten (or 1000 Books B4K) is an initiative to encourage parents and caregivers of very young children to read aloud to their children regularly.

Why should I read aloud to my child?  He/she doesn’t seem to be listening and can’t even talk yet!

I have taken to this saying: Read early, read often, and make it fun!  Children, even very young children, are capable of an astounding level of learning.  All we have to do is provide them with the stimuli to build that wiring in their brains!  For example, having a broad vocabulary has been linked to later success in reading.  Children who have been read to hear many more uncommon words than children who are not read to.  Having heard word at an early age and understood it within the context of a story makes it much easier for that child to read the word later on!  And don’t worry that your child isn’t sitting still–he/she is ALWAYS listening to you and learning from you!

1000 books sounds like a lot!  I just don’t think I can do it.

Did you know that by reading just 3 books a day, you can exceed this goal in just one year?!?  And it only takes about 20 minutes!  My daughter (now 5) and I have read together every night since she was a baby.  It is a great way for us to reconnect at the end of a busy day, and we both look forward to it!


004How does it work?

Just come to any of our four Lee County Library branches.  We will give you a welcome letter and the first book log.  Our theme is Old Macdonald had a Farm, so each of the 10 levels is represented by a different farm animal.  Each log has 100 spaces for books you have read with your child.  If you read the same book multiple times, go ahead and count it!  If your child hears books at library storytime or at daycare, count that too!






005We finished our first 100 books–now what?

Simply bring your completed log into one of our branches.  Your child will receive a sticker reflecting what level of the program he/she has completed and will be invited to place his/her name on a farm animal for our display (see picture at the top of this post).




Is there a time limit on the program?  What happens when we finish?

Although it is possible to finish the program within one year, it is not necessary to do so.  Please feel free to go at your own pace–just be sure to finish before your child enters kindergarten.  When you finish, your child will receive a special certificate and all of his/her completed log pages.  Plus, you will feel great knowing that you have given your child a jumpstart on success at school!

1000 Books Before Kindergarten is sponsored by the Lee County Library.  It is free to join.  If you have any questions, please call 759-2369.

Preschool storytime–Money!


Since April is Financial Literacy month, I decided to do a money-themed storytime last week for my preschool storytime groups.

Opening song:  We hit our knees together

Opening rhyme: Open them, shut them

Opening game:  Discussion–what do we use money for?  (For my first group, I wrote down a list of what we use money for.  For the second group, we just talked about it.  Neither group was very talkative, so I prompted them–we buy things we want/need, we save, and we give to others).

010I used this opportunity to show this flannelboard (adapted from a worksheet) and we sang a song.

(To the tune of Ten Little Indians)

Pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters

Pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters

Pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters

Put them in that order.




007Book: Benny’s Pennies, by Pat Brisson, Illustrated by Bob Barner.  This book is perfect for introducing the concept of money to very young children.  Benny has 5 shiny new pennies.  What shall he buy with them?  Luckily, his friends and family have plenty of suggestions.

011I used this flannel board as I was reading the book.  I think that it really helped the kids keep track of Benny’s spending.  After each purchase, we would review–Benny has one sweet smelling flower, one yummy cookie, and how many pennies?





009 Song:  Down around the corner at the bakery shop.  I got this idea and the nickel pieces from Mel’s Desk.  I asked for 5 volunteers and gave each of them a coin.  Then, as I sang the song, I would call on each of them to bring their coin up and get a cookie.  I usually do this song with a puppet of some kind, but I think that the kids really enjoyed doing it this way, and it gave them the experience of “spending money.”





008Bunny Money, by Rosemary Wells.  I love me some Max and Ruby!  However, this book didn’t seem to go over very well with my first group.  It would probably be more successful with older kids (say, 4-5 years) or with younger kids on a one-on-one basis.  It was a little on the long side and maybe too hard to keep track of the spending.  For that reason, with the second group I used a different book:






006Sheep in a Shop, by Nancy Shaw and Margot Apple.  These books are so cute!  I love them for phonological awareness since they have lots of rhyming words!  The sheep are shopping for a birthday present, but uh-oh!  Their piggy bank doesn’t have quite enough money in it to cover their purchases!  What will they do?  Trade their wool, of course!






Craft: Crayola play money coloring page.  We talked briefly about what color real money is, and that we DO NOT color on real money.  (There were definitely some relieved giggles from the parents and caregivers when I said that!)

Preschool storytimes and playgroups meet on Tuesday mornings at 10:00 a.m. at the Leesburg Library and Thursday mornings at 10:00 a.m. at the Oakland Library.  Preschool storytimes will go through the week of April 29, then break until the fall.  Rubber Ducky Club, summer reading for ages 0-5, will begin on Monday, June 3.




001For this week’s crafternoon, we made kites out of paper lunch bags.  I have been wanting to do a kite craft for awhile now, but I never could find the right one.  They either 1) wouldn’t fly, or 2) were too difficult.  I’m happy to report that this is the perfect, easy, fly-able kite craft I was looking for!  I found the idea and instructions here.  The kids had a great time making them!