Snowballs by Lois Ehlert
Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London, illustrated by Frank Remkiewicz
I LOVE using books from Jonathan London's Froggy series in my storytimes! Not only can we laugh at Froggy's silly antics, we can also help Froggy as he goes "flop flop flop" and produces all sorts of silly sounds! I also love how Froggy's mother is always sticking her head out the window and calling to her son. This is a great opportunity for the children to help me with the story! I point to Froggy's mother, then to the oversize letters, s-l-o-w-l-y running my finger under the letters as we all call out in our most exaggerated voices: "FRRROOGGYY!" This practice helps reinforce the concept of Print Awareness, the understanding that the lines and squiggles we know of as letters can actually tell us what to read and say!
I often remind myself that our little ones have not yet made the connection that the symbols on the page represent our spoken language. I sometimes ponder what it must be like to not yet have that association. I wonder if it might be somewhat the same as if I looked at this:
...and only paid attention to the 4 human figures that appear to be running or dancing. Imagine how my understanding of, and appreciation for, this piece of art would increase immensely if someone were to tell me that the rows of design above and below the figures actually mean something! Perhaps the top row represents the number of "suns" or days the people performed a rain dance, the second row indicates that they danced down the street past a long row of houses, the third row tells us how much rain they received, and the fourth row shows that the flood waters forced everyone to flee to the mountains for 16 days until the waters subsided.
That is a much more detailed and interesting story than "4 human figures that appear to be running or dancing"!
For our little ones, they can begin interpreting the illustrations as soon as they are born. But understanding the symbols, and their meaning, is a skill that comes gradually, with encouragement from those who care for them.
Everybody Say Hello!
(tune: "London Bridge")
Everybody say hello, say hello, say hello,
Everybody say hello, hello Wesley!
(Wesley is my turtle puppet who pops out of my apron pocket whenever we sing this song. Then he sits quietly on his rock and listens to the stories and sings along with us. At the end of storytime he says goodbye to the children, gives them high fives, eats pretend food from their hands, blows kisses, and plays hide and seek!)
Build a Snowman
(tune: "Frere Jacques")
Build a snowman...
Big and round...
Put on some mittens...
And a hat...
What's in the Green Box?
(tune: "Sally Wore a Red Dress")
What's in the green box,
The green box, the green box?
What's in the green box
For us to play?
We used precut paper snowmen, wallpaper samples, dry pasta, pompoms, beads, sequins, feathers, pipe cleaners and ribbon.
"Five Little Snowmen" and "Build a Snowman" felt stories:
Each Toddler Storytime includes activities that support one or more of the five early literacy practices identified as essential in helping your child develop the skills they need before they can learn to read. The five practices – singing, talking, reading, playing and writing –were developed for Every Child Ready to Read®, an initiative of the Association for Library Services for Children (ALSC) and the Public Library Association (PLA).
Every Child Ready to Read® @ your library®, PLA and ALSC logos are registered trademarks of the American Library Association and are used with permission.