Mr. T's StoryTime Blog!

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Mar. 6th & 7th

Hey everybody!

This week we read a book (one of Mr. T’s favorites) called Actual Size by Steve Jenkins:

So our theme was animals…large & small!  This book has illustrations of animals that are drawn to scale, so that a giant squid’s eyeball is as big as the page!  And a goliath frop leaps accross three whole fold out pages!  Please check-out the book if you haven’t already…it lists several facts along w/ the pictures too, so it’s a decent reference book, in case you ever need to know how big the smallest fish in the world is : )

For our craft, we made “Gorilla Gloves”!  Where kids traced the outline of their hand (and sometimes wrote their names) on paper cut-outs of the open-palmed gorilla hand on the cover of Actual Size.  Then, we glued that piece onto a paper sack to that we could where them as…well…gorilla gloves!  I, of course, insisted on getting high-fives from everyone.

It was a real blast!  Thanks for all your helpful input, thanks to Miss Karie for the “glove” idea & thank LFPL for all their great ideas: www.lfpl.org/documents/actual%20size%20outline[1].doc

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Feb. 28th & 29th

Howdy folks!

This week, our theme was “We Miss You, Miss Sarah!”  She was our ToddlerTime leader, who has now, sadly for us (good for her family), put in her notice to be a full-time mom at home.  For those of you who were here for her several years of StoryTime excellence for the Queen Creek Library, I asked that you decorate a special card for her!

Here’s the truly wonderful work (I can’t wait to actually hand them off to Miss Sarah…she’s gonna flip & I’ll definitely get a picture!):

Next, we read one of Miss Sarah’s favorite authors, Ian Falconer, in Olivia Save the Circus:

As the DIY craft, folks got to take home a small “Olivia” book, where kids can make up their own story to fit the scenes of the book…or, they could just scribble on it.  Either way, it’s a work of art, I’m telling you!  This idea came from Scholastic’s own site, so don’t worry about any copyright issues, o.k.?

Here’s the downladable mini-book, in case you ever want to print one out yourself: CRAFT – Olivia make-your-own story

Thanks for the awesome StoryTime experiences – I can’t image my life without ’em : )

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Feb. 21st & 22nd

So, this week marked our return to a normally scheduled StoryTime, yeah!  Thanks again to everyone for bearing with us – Miss Karrie & I thought that the mashups went pretty well overall, & the crowd seemed to enjoy them too!

In the Tuesday & Wednesday ToddlerTimes of this week, we read I Love My Mommy & I Love My Daddy by Sebastien Braun:

I Love My Mommy By Sebastien Braun Illustrated by Sebastien Braun  & I Love My Daddy By Sebastien Braun Illustrated by Sebastien Braun

I experimented w/ reading two books this week (Tuesdays, poor Tuesdays, had the great joy of watching Mr. T awkwardly stumble & sweat through a slow version of each story).  But because one was for mommy & one was for daddy, I couldn’t resist!

I laid off of the craft for this week for two reasons, 1) because the author’s website really didn’t have any useful resources, and 2) because parenting can be such a touchy subject.  My opinion is that relying on outside sources to find parenting advice, if even just for activities & stories, is not always the most ideal strategy…serious “research” is always needed!

But, if you’re interested in further bond-building child-to-parent books, check-out this awesome booklist from Nesting.com: http://www.nesting.com/experts/article/86681/Books-for-Baby-Mommy-and-Daddy-Too.html.

Thanks y’all for reading & coming to StoryTime!  As always, if you have any suggestions or comments, feel free to post or drop me a line : )

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Conrad Storad, tomorrow!! Tuesday, February 14th @ 9:30am!!!

Hey all!

Please don’t forget that this week’s StoryTimes have been shrunk to a one day, one showing format, with Arizona children’s author Conrad Storad!

This will be on Tuesday @  9:30am!!!

Come and listen to author Conrad Storad tell stories and read from his books.  Children ages 6 and under, please.  This event will require tickets, which will be distributed at 9:15 a.m.  For a glimpse into what his StoryTime entails, please see Miss Tara’s post about Perry Branch’s fun experience: http://storytimewithmisstara.blogspot.com/2012/02/2-9-12-conrad-storad.html

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Jan. 31st

Hi everyone, this past Tuesday’s StoryTime rocked!

We did more advanced parachute stuff, like running under the colors, which was awesome!  Our story was Big, Bigger, Biggest by Nancy Coffelt:

Please check-out the author’s website for all of those great illustrations & coloring-sheets: http://blog.nancycoffelt.com/.  Also, don’t forget that next week is our mash-up StoryTime, it runs from 10:30am to 11:00am.  The ages will be mixed, from 1.5 to 6, so user beware ; )

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No StoryTime tommorrow : (

Sorry folks, me n’ Miss Karrie (of PreSchool fame) are going to a Youth Services meeting on Wednesday, February 1st…so all story times are cancelled for that day.

Dang : (

The good news is that we’ll hopefully have tons of cool new songs/rhymes/craft ideas to share with all of you once we get back.  We haven’t been to one of these in quite a while (in fact, I’ve never been), so we’re excited to share our awesome experiences just as much as hearing other folks’ tales.

As a parting gift, I offer you the most tantalizing compilation of kitty cat videos on the Internet (set to “Jump” by Van Halen, of course), enjoy…I think!

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Jan. 24th & 25th

Hey everyone!

I hope each & every one of you has had a great week & a great library experience so far.  I am truly blessed to be able to hold StoryTimes for y’all, so thanks so much! 

Anywho, this week we read The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse by Eric Carle.  This book has some deeper meaning, from GoodReads: [the book pays homage to] Blue Rider (Blaue Reiter), created by painter Franz Marc (1880-1916), emulating Marc’s creations of fancifully colored animals, making this a celebration of the artistic spirit.

And I’m sure most of you are familiar with Eric Carle…if not, check-out his site if haven’t already, it’s pretty awesome: http://www.eric-carle.com/home.html

If I wasn’t sick the past week (I know…the first of the season), I might have done a more in-depth presentation of the story…but it seemed to go alright, so I might just keep to the basics & do another Eric Carle tale next month : )

Happy reading & thanks again for the support!!

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Jan. 17th & 18th

Hi everyone!!

This week was our second romp of the spring & I have to say, everything is going surprising well!  Not that I thought disaster would strike the StoryTime room or anything, but because I was trying so many new things (like the PowerPoint, the guitar, & the parachute rather than the craft), I was a little nervous…

Sheesh, who am I kidding?  I was A LOT nervous!

But all seemed well this week – seriously, if you ever have suggestions/comments I’d love to hear them, otherwise, you’re going to keep getting what you’re getting : )

We read Who Hops? by Katie Davis, which is more of an interactive story (at least for me) where kids have a chance to pretend “hop, fly, slither, swim, & crawl”!  Wednesday’s crowd was w-a-y more rambunctious than Tuesday’s, so I hope everyone still had a good time.  Wednesday’s group was a big one, sold out @ 50 living bodies in the room, which made parachuting very interesting.  Hopefully no one was scared-off or made to feel uncomfortable!

Next week, I’ll try to expand that “activity” section of StoryTime so that it’s not so c-r-a-z-y!

Also on Wednesday, I ran out of DIY Crafts…my apologies!  Here are the links to Katie Davis’ downloadables; her website is http://katiedavis.com/:

Eyes; Frog; FrogParts; HopsMatchingGame; LaughingElephantColoring; StorytimeColoringPg

I’ll leave these up @ least until next month, but just know that I’ve only been picking titles that have author websites w/ craft ideas, so when all else fails, you can always find the materials on their websites.

Cheers & thank you to all who have supported me along the way!

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Jan. 10th & 11th

Hey-a!

This week was our first time back from our winter break – I hope that everyone had a good one!  So, I tried a few new things with this StoryTime…

First of all, I’d like to give a huge shout-out (did I just type “shout-out”?) to Miss Tara, Perry Library’s StoryTimer extraordinaire!  If you get a chance to visit that branch, @ Queen Creek & Val Vista, please do so…it’s totally worth it for all the laughs & learning.  Also, I’d like to personally thank Miss Sarah for taking me under her wing as her bright-eyed padawan & showing me the ways of educating/entertaining toddlers!

Anyway, after picking up some very useful tactics from Miss Karrie (PreSchool StoryTimer) & Miss Lizzie (Teen Librarian) at our own branch, I’ve assembled what I think is a more comfortable story time line-up, at least for my talents.  Which aren’t many, believe you me!

So, we did a lot of songs & kinetic stuff – like “Hokey Pokey”, “If You’re Happy & You Know It”, & “Two Little Black Birds”.  By the way, for cool tutorials on how to play these numbers from Mahalo, check-out these links: &

I hope to do these same songs throughout the month, plus two extras – “Hello & How Are You?” (by the Wiggleworms) & “Goodbye”.  These are both adaptations from existing songs that I hope to get through to the kids via repetition.  Sorry in advance if you don’t like them…just keep bearing with me!  Here’s more info about Wiggleworms: http://www.bloodshotrecords.com/album/wiggleworms-love-you

The book we did this week was Dinosaur vs. the Library by Bob Shea.  Honestly, I wish I could do this book every week…it’s so…well, library-ish!  But I don’t think the crowd (or my boss) would appreciate that.  If you’re unfamiliar with the title, check it out here: http://disney.go.com/official-sites/dinosaur-vs/library

Another change was the “craft” portion, or absence of it during StoryTime.  What I did was instead of sacrificing 15 minutes of our precious morning to do something most folks can do at home, I printed out materials by the author…hopefully, so that parents could do just that, do the craft at home.  I hope to do this as often as I can, because it freed up a lot of time for a far more engaging activity…the PARACHUTE!  (For a list of Dinosaur vs. the Library printables, check-out this link: http://disney.go.com/official-sites/dinosaur-vs/extras).

So yeah, the parachute was super-fun & also mentally/physically stimulating.  By covering concepts like “high & low”, “fast & slow”, and the magic/science of gravity…I think it was a terrific success.  (I hope to do this activity every week as well!)

It truly warmed my heart to see the young ones have such a great time.  Some parents even took the time to offer me kind words of encouragement, which totally made my day…or more like year!  I’ve never felt as comfortable doin StoryTimes as I did that day.  Thank you all for the support & I can’t wait until next week…when we’ll ask the ever-asked question, “Who Hops?”

Cheers!

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