ACT Prep

As chair of my library system’s Teen Team, I created and led an ACT Prep class at my library a few Saturdays ago. One of our goals as a team is to encourage work and college readiness, in addition to encourage reading etc. Lucky for me, there is a great resource called Learning Express, and it actually has study guides, practice tests, flashcards, and breaks down the various parts of the test.

I showed attendees how to create an account and we clicked through the study resources in the website. They then took practice quizzes (you can take the full practice ACT Test or practice quizzes, and since we had 1.5 hours and not 3+ we did practice quizzes), and took notes on what they needed to practice. The other great thing about this resource, is everything is saved in your account. So if one of my attendees didn’t finish the science quiz, he or she could go home and log in (or go into the library after the program and log in) and finish the quiz, and they could do that as many times as needed!

I then went over some testing guidelines from the ACT website, like what calculators are allowed and where in our area the test is offered. While I can’t say the kids had fun at the program, it certainly was informative!

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Instrument Petting Zoo

A couple weeks ago Over a month ago… I hosted an instrument petting zoo at the library. A staff member had several maracas, rainsticks and rhythm sticks at the library, and at home I have a violin, a guitar and an oboe, so something with instruments seemed like an obvious program idea.

I grouped the “orchestra instruments” (that’s what I called the oboe, violin and guitar) on one side of the room, and the “traditional instruments” (that’s what I called the maracas, rainsticks and rhythm sticks) on the other. Since I don’t actually know how to play the oboe I created QR codes to YouTube videos highlighting what each orchestra instrument is supposed to sound like. In the end, this was unnecessary since nobody used the code. I also found these lovely dioramas of the instruments, pointing out the various parts.

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It was a very loose program, with no clear structure, but the kids had a lot of fun. I purposely did it that way as it took place right after storytime and I didn’t want every attendee crowding around the violin or the grabbing for the rain stick. By making it an open house kids could come and go as they pleased and spend as much time on each instrument as they wanted.

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The only downside– a few homeschool kids came in expecting that I would teach them how to play each instrument. If I do a program like this again, I’ll be very, very, clear about program outcomes and expectations.

Family Storytime: Red

Opening Song

Book:

The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood

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Action Rhyme:

Five Little Leaves

Five little leaves so bright and gay (hold up five fingers)

Were dancing about on a tree one day (wiggle fingers)

The wind came blowing through the town

Ooooooo……. Ooooooooo… wave arms around

One little leaf came tumbling down (bend down one finger)

Four little leaves…..

Three little leaves….

Two little leaves…

One little leaf….

Courtesy of Preschool Express

Book:

The Little Red Hen by Paul Galdone
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Song:
Head Shoulders Knees and Toes

Book:

The Red Hat by David Teague
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Parachute Activity

The Leaves on the Trees (to the tune of the Wheels on the Bus)

The leaves on the trees are red and brown

Red and brown, red and brown.

The leaves on the trees are red and brown,

All through the town.

The leaves on the trees are falling down,

Falling down, falling down.

The leaves on the trees are falling down,

All through the town.

The leaves on the trees make a crunching sound,

Crunching sound, crunching sound.

The leaves on the trees make a crunching sound,

All through the town.

Let’s rake the leaves into a mound,

Into a mound, into a mound.

Let’s rake the leaves into a mound

All through the town.

The children in town jump up and down,

Up and down, up and down.

The children in the town jump up and down

On the leaves on the ground.

Courtesy of Preschool Express

I pulled out the orange red and yellow scarves and put them in the middle of the parachute, and we pretended they were leaves. In retrospect, I should have added them later and had done a little something more with them at the end in the children jump up and down verse. Next time….

Closing Song

Family Storytime: Shapes

My opening song used in past storytimes is not working anymore. I think the groups are too large. When 37 people walked in last week I improvised and used the “we wave hello like this,” but that song is kind of boring. This week I decided to try something new. Hopefully the movement and ending in a seated position will also get everyone in the mood to sit and listen and get ready for storytime.

 

Opening Song:

“If You’re Happy and You Know It”

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands

If you’re happy and you know it and your face will surely show it

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands.

……………………….

If you’re happy and you know it stomp your feet…

If you’re happy and you know it turn around…

If you’re happy and you know it sit down (have to draw out the word sit to fit the rhythm)

Book:

Color Zoo by Lois Ehlert

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Feltboard:

Shape Monster

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a red circle for your lunch?

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a blue square for your lunch?

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a yellow triangle for your lunch?

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a green rectangle for your lunch?

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a orange oval for your lunch?

Shape Monster, Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
How about a purple diamond for your lunch?

Shape Monster Shape Monster
Munch, munch, munch
Hope you enjoyed your shape lunch!

Credit: A Child’s Place

Song:

I’m a Little Teapot

I’m a little teapot

short and stout

Here is my handle,

here is my spout.

When I get all steamed up

Hear me shout

Tip me over

and pour me out.

Book:

Shapes, ReShape by Silvia Borando

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Action Rhyme:

Where is….?” (to the tune of Where is Thumbkin)

Where is triangle? Where is triangle?

Here I am, Here I am (make triangle with hands)

How are you today, sir? Very well, I thank you.

Run away. Run away.

Asked storytime attendees what shape to make next. We made a square, circle and heart.

Credit: Storytime Katie

Book:

Out of Shapes by Ashley G

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Rhyme:

“Make a Circle”

Make a circle, make a circle,

Draw it in the sky

Use your finger, use your finger

Make it round as pie.

Draw a square, draw a square,

Make the lines so straight.

Make a square, make a square,

Draw a box in the air.

Draw a triangle, draw a triangle,

Always start at the top.

Make a tent, make a tent,

Use three lines and stop!

Credit: Storytime Katie

I mean to draw out the shapes on the whiteboard as everyone else drew them in the air, but I forgot.

Closing Song

Baby Storytime: 2

I plan on repeating a few feltboards/songs/stories throughout our sessions for a couple of reasons: familiarity, repetition increases learning, and parents will feel more comfortable using the rhymes/tickles/songs/stories outside of the home.

Opening Song:

Good morning to you (clap)

Good morning to you (clap)

Good morning dear, ________

Good morning to you (clap)

Action Rhyme:

Open Them Shut Them

Open them, shut them

Open them, shut them

Give a little clap clap clap

And lay them in your lap lap lap

Book:

I Can Help by David Hyde Costello

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Feltboard:

Five little Ducks

Book:

Bottoms Up by Yusuke Yonezu

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Action Song:

“Put Your Finger On Your Belly”

Put your finger on your belly, on  your belly

Put your finger on your belly, on  your belly

Put your finger on your belly, wiggle it round

And round like jelly

Put your finger in the air, in the air

Put your finger in the air, in the air

Wave it round while you are there

Put your finger on your nose on  your nose

Put your finger on your nose on  your nose

And run it down to your toes

Put your finger on  your toe on your toe

Put your finger on  your toe on your toe

And move it to and froe

Put your finger on your ear, on your ear

Put your finger on your ear, on your ear

And see if it’s still here

Shared Book:

Bright Baby Touch and Feel at the Zoo by Roger Priddy

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Action Rhyme:

“I Wiggle”

I wiggle, wiggle, wiggle my fingers

I wiggle, wiggle, wiggle my toes

I wiggle, wiggle, wiggle my shoulders

I wiggle, wiggle, wiggle my nose

Now no more wiggles are left in me

So I will be as still as I can be

Book:

Pocket Piggie’s Colors!  by Richard Austin

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Closing Song:

We Wave Goodbye Like This

Family Storytime: Dogs

Family Storytime is a bit odd. During the summer it was a true family storytime with attendees ranging from babies to 11(ish). Today’s group (of 37!) looked to be mostly toddlers. Which, is totally fine, but I had planned a storytime geared towards 3 year olds and up.

Opening Song

We Wave Hello Like This

We wave hello like this,

We wave hello like,

We wave hello to all our friends,

We wave hello like this.

Book:

Hickory Dickory Dog by Alison Murray

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Feltboard/Puppet:

Five Little Puppies

Five little puppies playing in the sun (hold up hand with puppies, or place puppies on felt)

This one saw a rabbit, and he began to run (put finger down or remove one dog from felt)

This one saw a butterfly and he began to race (put finger down or remove dog from felt)

This one saw a pussycat and he began to chase (put finger down or remove dog from felt)

This one tried to catch his tail and he went round and round (put finger down or remove dog from felt)

This one was so quiet, he never made a sound (put down thumb or remove dog from felt)

Song:

Head Shoulders Knees and Toes

Book:

Puddle Pug by Kim Norman

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Song:

BINGO

Book:

Underwater Doggies Colors by Seth Casteel

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Closing Song

Same as opening song, but instead of “wave hello” it’s “wave goodbye”