Flannel Friday: Things that Go

This week our story time theme was Things that go.  It was a really fun theme and hopefully I will get the rest of our story time posted soon, (it is up and you can read about the entire story time here!) but for now, here is our flannel story.  I got this idea from another Flannel Friday post that I saw at ValleyStorytime.  
The story is like Bill Martin's Brown Bear, Brown Bear, what do you see?  So, I had various modes of transportation in an array of colors.  I would have the kids tell me what it was and what color it was.  Then we would all say (if it was a red bus) 'Red bus, red bus, what do you see?'  I put up only one item at a time, so I would then switch the items and they would tell me what the new one was.  I ended with a yellow race car and said 'I see a yellow car racing past me!' and then 'zoomed' the whole flannel board away to hide behind my story time cart.
There is a yellow race car that did not make the picture as I left it behind at work.  I made all of my vehicles out of craft foam.  I did use clip art as templates for these as my car drawing skills are not so great.
The blimp was a favorite as we live near the Blimp hanger and see it flying around often.

And now for a quick lesson...save your templates!  Luckily I did because I brought this one home and it was just too tempting for a crazy little guy.  He managed to grab these and ripped apart my blue truck.  (Perhaps that is an advantage to flannel over foam?)  I may just tape it back together, but I did save all the pictures that  I used in a file, so I can re-make any if needed.  If I can re-use templates that I have printed out I keep them in a large manila envelope with the finished pieces.
Oh yeah, and keep them away from ornery little car enthusiasts!

You can find this week's round up with Kay Leigh at Story Time ABC's, past round ups with Anne at Sotomorrow, and all posts compiled on Pinterest by clicking the Flannel Friday link on the right.


Flannel Friday: Birthday Cake

 This week's story time was all about birthdays!  We celebrated my puppet Sparky's birthday.  Despite what his hat says he was turning 2.  My flannel this week was inspired by Storytime Katie, although I ended up making my own rhyme so the kids could 'blow' out the candles.

We had a cake and we 'lit' the candles, counting them as we went.  Then our rhyme went:
5 candles on a birthday cake.
If we blow one out, how many does that make.

Then, all of this kids would blow as hard as they could and I would pull off one flame.  Then, we re-counted the flames and repeated with 4, 3, 2, and 1 candles.
My grand plan was that I would have fishing wire attached to the flames and I could pull them of invisibly.  But, I made a mistake and glued the wire on coming out of the bottom of the flame instead of the top, making them harder to stick on and disguise.  So, not having much time for a re-do, I just cut the wire and did it by hand.
Also during story time we 'baked' a cake using the foam baking ingredients I used for a cookie baking story time last fall.  Sparky dropped the ingredients in and stirred them around (the kids added to the stirring motion) and then put them in the oven.  When story time was done, Sparky gave everyone a cupcake!  Somehow, it never fails that if I serve food at story time the parents tell me how great the program was (which is odd as I always expect that they will be annoyed I gave their children sugar).
The round-up this week is hosted by Cate at Storytiming.com.  A list of past round-ups can be found at Sotomorrow and all contributions will be pinned to the Pinterest page, found by clicking the Flannel Friday button to the right. 

Happy Birthday Sparky!

 This week at story time we celebrated Sparky's birthday.  (Actually, it was my birthday, but I decided to share it with Sparky and avoid all of the 'How old is Miss Sarah' questions.)  So our letter of the day was B for Birthday.

We began by talking about how old everyone turned on their birthday.  I had planned to talk about what month their birthday was in, but they had enough trouble telling me how old they are, so I skipped that one.  But, we talked about how on your birthday you have cake and blow out candles, open presents, and sometimes have a party and play games.

Our first book was Little Mouse and the big cupcake by Thomas Taylor.  This is a cute story about a little mouse who finds a cupcake that is so big that he cannot carry it home.  When friends come by he asks for their help carrying it, but it is too big for all of them.  But, they do ask to try the cupcake and being very good at sharing little mouse lets everyone take a bite.  Before long the cupcake is the perfect size for a mouse and everyone has had a nice lesson about sharing.

Before we read our second book Sparky came out and announced that he wanted to make some cake.  So, he got out a bowl and we put ingredients for a cake into it and Sparky mixed it up.  Last fall I had done a cookie story time, so I already had foam ingredients for the cake.  Sparky put it in the oven to cook while we read some more books.
The second book we read was Jan Thomas' A birthday for Cow!  I had a hard time telling if the kids liked this book or not.  The parents had some chuckles, so someone enjoyed it.  In the story, pig and mouse want to make a birthday cake for cow.  Duck tries to help, but keeps trying to sneak a turnip in wherever he can.  Despite duck's efforts, cow and mouse get a cake baked and decorated.  When cow comes along, he is really excited to get .... A TURNIP!!

This week's flannel story was blowing out candles on a birthday cake.  I got inspiration for it from Storytime Katie.  Since blowing out candles is the best part of a cake I made up a rhyme so that the kids could do that.  First, we lit the candles on the cake, counting as we went. 
 Then we said:
5 candles on a birthday cake.
If we blow one out, how many will that make?

Then all of the kids would blow and I pulled off one flame and we counted the flames that were left.  We repeated the rhyme with 4, 3, 2, and 1 candles until they were all 'blown out.'

We had fun singing Carole Peterson's Stinky cake song.  This song is all about baking a really stinky cake.  I gave all the kids scarves to wave in front of their noses as we added dirty socks, moldy fish, baby diapers, and a stinky skunk into the cake.  I had all of these items on hand so I would drop them into the bowl as we sang about them.  I was rather surprised by how many kids said that they would eat the cake.
Carole Peterson was busy during story time because we also did two more of here songs.  Tommy Thumb is up is a fingerplay song that I have used many times.  It is a good sitting song and is much like Where is Thumbkin.  I like that in Carole's version the kids use thumb, pointer fingers, pinkie fingers, and all the fingers; leaving off the tricky middle fingers.  We ended with B-Bananas which is a chant where the kids act like a banana, peel it, eat it, go bananas, then repeat.

Just for fun we also sang Clap your hands from the album Wiggleworms love you.  This is an active song where the kids clap, stomp, wave, and brush their teeth.

Sparky's cupcakes finished up just as story time was ending, so our craft for the day was icing cupcakes.  To make things easier I pre-portioned the icing and gave kids a craft stick to spread it with.  Then they took turns adding some sprinkles.  Most ate all of the cupcake before going, but I did have some baggies on hand for those who wanted to finish the cupcake later.


Flannel Friday: Tools

This week our story time theme was tools, so I borrowed a song that Meghan at Busy Crating Mommy posted a few months back.  She had a whole tool belt and a few more tools than I made, but it was a fun song.  I used clip art for the shapes of my tools and they are made from craft foam.  My version was a tad different, instead of singing that MacDonald had a toolbelt, he just had some tools.  I put one tool up at a time so the kids could name it.  We talked about its sound or action, then we sang:

Old MacDonald had some tools, E-I-E-I-O.
And with those tools he had a hammer, E-I-E-I-O.
With a bang, bang, here and a bang, bang, there.
Here a bang, there a bang, everywhere a bang, bang,
Old MacDonald had some tools, E-I-E-I-O.

We repeated with:
A saw that went see-saw
A wrench that turn-turned
A screwdriver that would twist-twist
Pliers that pinch-pinch
And a drill that went ZZZZ-ZZZZ

Songs like this are great because I can always cut them down if the kids lose interest.  Plus, since it is a tune they know, all the kids and parents sing along!

You can see my full story time here.  This week's round-up is hosted by  Library Quine at Loons and Quines @ Librarytime.  Links to past round-ups are with Anne at Sotomorrow, you can click the link to the right to see all posts on Pinterest, or you can check out the Facebook group.

Tap, tap, tap, with your hammer

This week's exciting story time theme was tools.  I have noticed that having a 2 year old boy at home has influenced my story time choices some.  We have a few more 'boy' themes this spring.  Although, there were quite a few girls who also knew the names of tools, so it wasn't only for the boys.  Our letter of the day was T for Tools and after naming some 'T' words like tongue, toes, and turtles; Sparky pulled out a hammer to get us thinking about tools.

Our first book was Demolition by Sally Sutton.  When I asked if they knew what demolition meant they were no answers.  But, when I told them it was like building a block tower and knocking it down they all got it.  And that it what this book is all about.  There is lots of heavy machinery that knocks down a building, grinds up and recycles the materials, and then builds a new play ground.  This book has colorful, large illustrations and descriptive, rhyming text.

The second book that we read was Tap, tap, bang, bang by Emma Garcia.  This book is all about tools and the sounds they make.  As I read this book I would make motions like I was using the particular tools, such as the saw, drill, wrench, etc.  Many of the kids did this along with me and that kept them really really interested in the book.  There are lots of 'noises' in this book that can be fun to make (like the drill) and the cartoon tools are big, bold, and bright.

Our last book was Philemon Sturges' I love tools!  This book also talks about the different tools that are used in the construction of a bird house.  It has very simple, rhyming text as the little boy describes what each tool can do.

We had several tool related songs and rhymes this week.  We did a fingerplay that I found at Mel's Desk called 5 little nails.  Mel actually made hers into a prop that is cool, but we used our fingers and did the rhyme (my version was slightly different than Mel's):

5 little nails, standing straight and steady.
Here comes the carpenter, with a hammer ready,
Bang, bang, bang!

We counted out nails between each round and repeated with 4, 3, 2, and 1 nails.

I made a flannel board for a song that I found called Old MacDonald had a tool belt.  I first saw this posted by Meghan at Busy Crafting Mommy.  My version is shorter, and less beautiful than Meghan's, but the kids didn't know the difference and enjoyed it.
We sang:

Old MacDonald had some tools, E-I-E-I-O.
And with those tools he had a hammer, E-I-E-I-O.
With a bang, bang, here and a bang, bang, there.
Here a bang, there a bang, everywhere a bang, bang,
Old MacDonald had some tools, E-I-E-I-O.

We repeated with:
A saw that went see-saw
A wrench that turn-turned
A screwdriver that would twist-twist
Pliers that pinch-pinch
And a drill that went ZZZZ-ZZZZ

We also sang Carole Peterson's I can hammer.  This song starts with the kids using one hammer and each round adds a hand, both feet, and their head.

Raffi has a song called Bumping up and down that is a fun tool-ish song.  First you bump up and down in the wagon, but it breaks, so we bumped up and down tilted to the side.  Then we fixed the wagon with a hammer so we could bump up and down again, but it breaks and we tilt the other way.  We fix it again with some pliers so that we can bump up and down one last time.

It had nothing to do with tools, but for fun we got out the scarves and sang Johnette Downing's Shake your scarves.  I love this song and the kids really enjoy the scarves.  You shakes the scarves up, down, around, on knees, with different hands, on your back, all over.  It is fun and mildly therapeutic.

Our craft for the day was a hammer shaker.  I took empty toilet paper tubes, put a little corn inside and covered the ends.  Each kid had some white paper to color and wrap around the tube and a hammer for each side of the tube.  They really seemed to enjoy these hammers.  It was a little more prep than I tend to do, (good busy work if you have teen volunteers) but I think they turned out well.


Flannel Friday: Where's my egg?

This week I did an Egg theme in story time to coincide with Easter although the theme was not Easter-y at all.  All of our books were about eggs and we talked about what different animals might hatch from an egg.

The flannel story I did was more of a seek-and-find where we were looking under eggs to find a baby chick.  We have a puppet that is a baby chick that curls up into an egg (or pops out of the egg).  I told the kids that the chick was looking for his sister and we proceeded to look under the eggs to see what we could find.

You could have the kids guess, but I just pulled off eggs knowing where the chick was and saving that egg for last.  The kids would just yell out what they saw under the egg.
I did put some Easter-ish things under the eggs, like the jellybeans and chocolate bunny.  By far the favorite item was the Angry Bird.  I found clip art to help make him, the chocolate bunny, and the ostrich.  The rest were free-handed.

Discover this week's round-up with Erin at Falling Flannelboards, see past round-ups with Anne at Sotomorrow, or click the Flannel Friday link to your right to see all posts compiled on Pinterst.

Crack open an Egg

Somehow I have gotten behind in my posting - again.  So, I will keep myself on track by posting this week's story time now and hopefully getting last week's up soon.  With the Easter Bunny coming this weekend we did an Egg theme for story time.  I really didn't do much that was Easter-y, we focused more on the egg aspect.  Our letter of the day was E (for the second time this session much to the joy of a few children who have E names) and our word was Egg.  A few even remembered our elephants from a few weeks ago when I asked what words start with the letter E.  They also came up with eggs rather quickly.

We talked for a minute about what hatches from eggs.  They knew a few like chickens, ducks, birds, and dinosaurs.  I added alligators, turtles, spiders, caterpillars, snakes, and dragons - just like Sparky!

That little discussion led well to our first book which was The cow that laid an egg by Andy Cutbill.  This is a fun book about an ordinary cow (ordinary in the fact that she cannot do fabulous tricks like the handstands the other cows do) who appears to lay an egg.  There is much speculation among the other cows about who really laid the egg (the chickens are prime suspects).  So, they all wait eagerly to see what will come out of the egg.  This one has a cute, semi-surprise ending that the kids enjoyed.

Our second book was Emily Gravett's The odd egg.  In this story all the birds have laid eggs, except for duck - who happens to be a boy and thus making egg laying rather impossible.  (This fact is not mentioned in the story and could make for good discussion, though I did not address it with the 2's and 3's.)  But, duck finds an egg, so he has one of his own.  When all of the other eggs hatch with babies that look like the mothers, his remains unhatched.  Until, one day, a surprise pops out.  This was another surprise ending that they seemed to enjoy.

We ended with a flannel board that I made to go along with the theme.  Basically I had 11 craft foam eggs, each with something different hidden underneath.  We were in search of a small chick that was hidden under one egg.  I pulled each egg off and the kids would shout out what they saw.  We found a carrot, a chocolate bunny, jellybeans, a dinosaur, and even an Angry Bird before we got to the chick.
This was a busy week for our egg shakers.  We sang the Shaker hop by Carole Peterson.  This is much like the Bunny hop, but instead you put your shakers in and out and then dance around. 

Laurie Berkner's I know a chicken is always great for an egg theme.  She knows a chicken who laid a shaky egg, so we shake our eggs around.  The kids really like the parts where they get to shake the eggs fast.  This song can get a little long, but you can always stop it early.

We also sang the Wiggles version of Shake your sillies out.  I let my Tuesday night group use shaker eggs with this one as it is a small group and they were able to sit quietly with the shakers during the second story.  With the other groups I collected the eggs between the other two songs and we just sang this one with no shakers.
Our craft this week was an Easter grass egg that I found here at CraftyNoodle.  I failed to notice that they used paper grass and instead bought the plastic kind which did not work well with the glue stick you are instructed to use.  However, I found that Elmer's glue did the trick and we ended up with some nice looking eggs anyway.