My Storytime Has Been Pimped

That’s a phrase I never thought I’d use…

Thank you Lisa for sharing this much improved version of this storytime!

Let me start by saying that for someone who had no storytime training and hadn’t been doing storytimes that long, that this isn’t a bad plan.  You are always harder on yourself than others would be.  Plus, we are luckier now with the explosion of blogs and Twitter that we get to see a lot of fantastic storytimes all the time without being at a conference.  I know that this has raised the bar for my programs.

Here are my thoughts about the plan:

  • My thought when doing family storytimes is to gear them towards your youngest follower, other than babies.  Since this is a plan for 10ish 2-7 year olds, I would gear the plan towards the 2-4 range.  If their attention span goes, it becomes very easy to lose control of the program.
  • Plans are great.  I use them for all of my programs.  You just need to be flexible enough to chuck the plan if it isn’t working.  You also need things to substitute, such as songs, rhymes, etc., when you ditch the plan.
  • You kiddos will have the longest attention span at the beginning of storytime.  After all, it is really hard to pay attention for 30 minutes or so.  Knowing this, start with your longest book first and go progressively shorter.  I also like to do something in between each story, whether it be a rhyme or a song, so they can get any wiggles out.

Using your plan as a basis, here’s how I would switch it up:

  • Rhyme-Open shut them
  • Read There’s a Nightmare in My Closet
  • Flannelboard-Little Monster, Little Monster
  • Read Where the Wild Things Are
  • Action Rhyme-Going on a Monster Hunt (If I had a big enough room, we would actually move to each pretend section as if we were going on a real hunt.)
  • Read Under the Bed
  • Song/Dance-“We Are the Monsters” from Bouncy Blue by The Learning Groove
  • Flannelboard-Five Little Monsters
  • Action Song-Horns and Fangs  (at least 2x)
  • Book-Wave Goodbye
  • Coloring page

My back-up stuff would include-

-words and actions to do the Hooky Spooky (like the Hokey Pokey)

-a copy of Go Away, Big Green Monster! plus flannelboard

-cd copy of “Monster Boogie” on Laurie Berkner’s Buzz Buzz

I would get rid of No Such Thing as it has a lot of words.  It would be fine if you had a bunch of older kids, but very few 2 year olds will sit through this length.  I would also pass out a stamp or sticker along with the coloring page.

You can still add your 2 cents! How would YOU do this storytime differently?


About Kendra

Children's Librarian in the Northwest. Lover of toddlers, twitter, and TV (T's, too, apparently!).

Posted on November 20, 2013, in Hack My Storytime. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I love this idea! When I was taught how to do storytime, I was taught to read three books: three books to babies, three books to toddlers, three books to preschoolers. Now, I almost never read three books. It’s just too much! I like using the Whole Book Approach sometimes, which savors the illustrations, and I started repeating stories in the same storytime after reading Betsy Diamont-Cohen’s new Transforming Storytime book. I would read one of Emberley’s monster books, then the children will help me act out and sing it using monster props or finger puppets. I wonder if I have any of my first storytime plans…

  2. I love this exercise! I recently took evaluation forms in my storytime and it was all super positive but then I’m all, “surely there’s something I can do better.” Because that’s what a masochist I am.

  1. Pingback: Pimp My Storytime Finale | Storytime Underground

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