Parenting Packs: New Baby in the House

bookbundlesparentingpacks

For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • I’m a Big Brother by Joanna Cole ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • I’m a Big Sister by Joanna Cole ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings by Dr. Laura Markham ($15.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • There’s Going to be a Baby by John Burningham ($7.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • We Have a Baby by Cathryn Falwell ($6.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Baby Bear Set (Bear with t-shirts; diapers; bottles — all pieces sold separately) ($28.97) — Amazon
  • Mesh Bag ($3.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $96.82

For the kids books: I’m a Big Brother and I’m a Big Sister, There’s Going to be a Baby, and We Have a Baby. I wanted to provide a range of times that this Pack could be checked out: before baby or right after baby arrives and chose titles that reflected both time periods. I also included suggestions on the Resources Guide for specific titles (big brother welcomes little brother, big brother welcomes little sister, big sister welcomes little sister, big sister welcome little brother, and older sibling welcomes twins) to reflect different situations.

For the caregivers book: I chose Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings because it includes a very helpful chapter on how to handle the transition between single child and multiple children. It also provides a variety of tips on parenting multiple children and is a popular series at our library.

I created the baby bear set by purchasing two sets each of the “I’m a Big Brother” and “I’m a Big Sister” bears. I have two bears in reserve in case one of them needs to be replaced I also purchased baby bottles and LaLaLoopsy magic diapers (yes, seriously) to make this set. Kids can practice on their own animals as caregiver is changing the real baby or as caregiver is preparing the child for the baby to arrive.


It’s the end of May and the New Baby in the House Parenting Packs have gone out 4 times each since launching at the end of November! I’m very happy with my decision to create two of these Packs however because they’ve often been out at the same exact time.

Shake, Shimmy, & Dance: 7/26

It’s summer time again, which means eight weeks straight of Shake, Shimmy, & Dance! This was our last week for this summer!

shakeshimmyanddance

The Plan

musicclasstoday
Book
Music Class Today! by David Weinstone
I thought that using this book as a closer to the Shake, Shimmy, & Dance session would be a fun idea to review all the things we had done together. The kids really seemed to enjoy the page spreads that showed activities we do in Shake, Shimmy like shaker eggs, singing songs, and even the clean-up page got “We do that!” cheers of excitement. The other reason that I like using this book is that it reassures caregivers and more hesitant children that it’s okay to do things at your own speed. And I really liked ending on “Come back another day” for the last week.

Props
Wrist Ribbons!

The Playlist

Hello & How Are You? — Old Town School of Folk Music
Get Your Move On — Mr. Jon & Friends
The Airplane Song — Laurie Berkner
Jump, Jump — Joanie Leeds
Your Own Dances Moves — The Learning Groove
Got the Wiggles — Michael Plunkett
All My Colors — Ralph Covert
Train Song — Bari Koral Family Rock Band
Shake Hands With Friends — Ella Jenkins

How It Went

I went with a lot of tried and true favorites for this last Shake, Shimmy of the summer season. The first three songs: “Get Your Move On”, “The Airplane Song”, and “Jump, Jump” all have instructions in the music which makes it easy to follow along and for grown-ups to participate. And I still believe that nothing beats doing “The Airplane Song” with seventy-six people.

“Your Own Dance Moves” was new to me and I had the families do a free dance to the song because the lyrics involved a lot of different movements. Some of the caregivers listened and helped their child to follow the song, but it also worked as a free dance.

Our props today were the wrist ribbons. “Got the Wiggles” has instructions and I have to say that it was not as successful as I wanted. While I really enjoy direction songs, I find that the Michael Plunkett CDs through Kimbo are not always loud enough to catch the attention of my large group, even with our sound system. During “All My Colors”, I asked kids to find a friend or a few friends to make a rainbow together with their ribbons. I enjoy promoting social skills in the program! Finally, we formed a train around the room, heading into station clean-up! As the kids reached the front table, I asked them to put their ribbons away. It worked like a charm!

An excellent wrap to the Shake, Shimmy summer season. I’ll be doing a stand-alone event in August outside for the first time! Look out for that write-up coming soon!

(For an example of the Powerpoint and handouts that I made for each Shake, Shimmy please visit the original post.)

Parenting Packs: Healthy Eating

bookbundlesparentingpacks

For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

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Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Cool Kids Cook by Kid Chef Eliana & Dianne de las Casas ($14.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Give Peas a Chance by Kate Samela ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Go, Go, Grapes! by April Pulley Sayre ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • The No Cry Picky Eater Solution by Elizabeth Pantley ($17.00) — Baker & Taylor
  • Rah, Rah, Radishes! by April Pulley Sayre ($17.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Learning Resources Healthy Helpings: A MyPlate Game ($19.99) — Learning Resources
  • Learning Resources Pretend & Play Sliceable Fruit and Veggies ($19.99) — Learning Resources
  • Mesh Bag (1) & Vinyl Bag (1) ($6.98) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $148.87

For the kids books: Cool Kids Cook which includes easy and healthy recipes for kids to make with caregivers. I liked that this book was “written” by a Kid Chef and seemed a lot more accessible than some of the character cookbooks in our library. And then Go, Go, Grapes! and Rah, Rah, Radishes! because of their great photos and excellent rhythm — hopefully these books will inspire kids to try a new fruit or vegetable!

And the grown-up books: Give Peas a Chance and The No Cry Picky Eater Solution. Both books address picky eaters (which is a common issue with healthy eating), but Give Peas a Chance addresses other eating concerns like nutrition, how much food is enough, and beyond the toddler to the whole family. It’s also written by a pediatric nutrition specialist. The No Cry Picky Eater Solution is from a trusted line of books and it’s a resource that we have in both areas of the library (adult and parent/teacher collection).

I wanted to include a MyPlate tie-in since the USDA is an excellent source for caregivers to turn to about healthy eating. And rather than including a chart or book, I was thrilled to find a game. Kids can race to fill their plates with healthy choices. This enforces the MyPlate choice options and portion sizes.

Lastly, I wanted to include play food. Since I was focusing on healthy eating, I stuck to Fruits and Veggies. I loved play food as a child and hope that it sparks their interest in new fruits or vegetables. I also included suggestions to keep these in the kitchen so that the family can “prepare” dinner together, even if the child is using pretend food.


It’s the end of May and the Healthy Eating Parenting Pack has gone out 7 times since launching at the end of November! Another popular choice from our collection!

Outreach Storytime: 7/7

During the summer, I visit several area preschools to do storytime. They all request specific themes, relevant to their curriculum. At this school, I visit a total of six classrooms. Each classroom doubles up with another group creating three storytimes at the visit. I’ll star the materials each time I use it. This week’s theme was Eric Carle.

The Plan

Books

outreach-ericcarle

1, 2, 3 to the Zoo by Eric Carle***
The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse by Eric Carle**
Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too? by Eric Carle*
From Head to Toe by Eric Carle***
Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me by Eric Carle**
The Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle**

Extension Activities

Flannelboard: “Brown Bear, Brown Bear”***

Flannelboard: “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”***

Prop: “Song Cube”*

Puppets: “Two Little Bears”**

How It Went

First of all, Eric Carle’s books are SO interactive that I barely felt the need to do any extensions activities. We made animal noises during The Very Busy Spider, acted like zoo animals during From Head to Toe and 1, 2, 3 to the Zoo, made our moons bigger and smaller during Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me, pretended to painted during The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse and joined in on the refrain during nearly all of the books.

[I don’t normally do storytime without rhymes/fingerplays, but knowing this school and the group of kids, I was confident that we’d be okay with the books and the interactivity there.]

The toddler rooms really enjoyed The Very Busy Spider and making animals noises. That was definitely their high point.

The pre-k rooms were spell-bound by the flaps in Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me and also enthusiastically participated in From Head to Toe.

The preschool rooms were my loudest chanters during the “Brown Bear, Brown Bear” flannelboard and really enjoyed all the books. I was able to read FIVE BOOKS with them because of Carle’s shorter texts and their incredible attention.

Shake, Shimmy, & Dance: 7/19

It’s summer time again, which means eight weeks straight of Shake, Shimmy, & Dance!

shakeshimmyanddance

The Plan

nosetotoesyouareyummy
Book
Nose to Toes, You Are Yummy by Karen Beaumont
This is a very similar book to Eric Carle’s From Head to Toe and a positive addition to the Shake, Shimmy books. I had a lot of babies in the audience today and we talked about how this could be modified for babies by touching the body part that the book is talking about. Also, any book that gives a chance to reaffirm children that they are loved is a plus in my book.

Props
Parachute!

The Playlist

Hello & How Are You? — Old Town School of Folk Music
Kidquake! — The Not-Its
If You’re Happy and You Know It — Songs for Wiggleworms
Mr. Eric’s Jumping Song — The Learning Groove
Reach for the Sky — Fresh Beat Band
Popcorn — Joanie Leeds
Fast and Slow — Laurie Berkner
Take the Sun — Caspar Babypants
Shake Hands With Friends — Ella Jenkins

How It Went

A very bizarre attendance spike happened today. Last week, we hit a low of only 51 in attendance. This normally happens in July between the hot weather and families taking vacations before school starts again in August. But today, I had 81 in attendance. Thumbs up!

For our first song “Kidquake”, I had kids dance until they heard the word SHAKE and then they were encouraged to shake their hands or bodies. The next two songs both have instructions in them and we followed them. I made sure to tell caregivers that “Mr. Eric’s Jumping Song” was a harder song for the preschoolers in the audience. If their child could only jump/bounce, that was perfectly fine.

And then I had the best parachute day I’ve had. We popped crumpled up white paper popcorn on the chute to “Popcorn”; shook fast and slow during “Fast and Slow”; and raised the parachute up and down while the kids went underneath during “Take the Sun”. My caregivers were AWESOME during the clean-up of the parachute and really helped the kids. I need to get more paper popcorn going though because I had to go under the chute to help it stop gathering in one particular spot.

(For an example of the Powerpoint and handouts that I made for each Shake, Shimmy please visit the original post.)

Parenting Packs: First Trip on an Airplane

bookbundlesparentingpacks

For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets and resource guide amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

image

Itemized List

  • Carrying Tote ($15.99) — The Container Store
  • Flight 1-2-3 by Maria van Lieshout ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Hello Airplane! by Bill Cotter ($16.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Planes by Byron Barton ($7.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Travel with Children by Lonely Planet ($21.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Doodle Pro Travel by Fisher-Price (2) ($23.98) — Amazon
  • Little People Wheelies ($17.98) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets & Resource Guide ($3.00) — created in-house

Total: $125.90

The books for the kids: Flight 1-2-3 was, at the time, the only book that detailed the airport experience as it is now by including security checkpoints. Many of the older titles do not include this step. Hello Airplane! really captured what a child might see when looking out the window. Planes by Byron Barton is a classic and has a lot of really good airport vocabulary.

For caregivers, I chose Travel With Children. This book doesn’t really address being on an airplane, but it does have travel tips for travelling with children. And it also covers both domestic and international travel with a page on each state or country.

I wanted toys that were small enough to be used on an airplane if the caregiver wanted to bring them along. I chose the Doodle Pro travel because it’s a drawing tool that’s self-contained and won’t cause a mess on a plane. And I made sure to include two of them for families with multiple children. I also wanted to include some planes that could be used in dramatic play.


It’s the end of May and the First Trip on an Airplane Parenting Pack has gone out 8 times since launching at the end of November! This is our most popular single Parenting Pack (technically all Potty Training Packs are most popular if you add up their circulations together).

Families: Pilots & Astronauts!

During the summer, staff rotates a Saturday morning storytime for all ages. The program is drop-in which means we never know how many families will attend or the age range. This summer, we’re focusing on community helpers and I played to my strengths — space! Well, pilots and astronauts really. I only starred the materials used at storytime, but I pulled more than I needed.

The Plan

Books

pilotsastronauts

ABCs on Wings by Ramon Olivera*
The Airport Book by Lisa Brown
Astronaut Handbook by Meghan McCarthy
Flying by Donald Crews
Hello, Airplane by Bill Cotter*
Higher, Higher by Leslie Patricelli
I Want to Be an Astronaut by Byron Barton*

Extension Activities

Flannelboard: “Four Rockets”*

Finger Puppets: “Two Little Astronauts”*

CD: Laurie Berkner’s The Airplane Song*

Action Rhyme: “Zoom, Zoom, Zoom”*
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
If you want to take a trip,
Climb aboard my rocket ship,
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blast off!
Credit: Jbrary

How It Went

I don’t know if you’ve ever experienced the “please come, please come, please come” storytime mantra like I did during the wait before this program. I was scheduled for Fourth of July Saturday and I just had that gut feeling that I might not have any families attend that day because of the holiday.

It started small with only a few friends (two families) but grew to have eight families of fifteen friends! It was definitely a more toddler crowd, but I had books that would work for them. Caregivers loved ABCs on Wings especially after I gave my vocabulary tip and kids had the best time waving along to Hello, Airplane.

You’ll notice that I did all of the extension activities to hold the crowd’s attention. Since it was such a younger crowd, I knew that doing the activities would help me out. The toddlers and babies had the best smiles during both “The Airplane Song” and “Zoom, Zoom, Zoom”.

Shake, Shimmy, & Dance: 7/12

It’s summer time again, which means eight weeks straight of Shake, Shimmy, & Dance!

shakeshimmyanddance

The Plan

aintgonnapaint
Book
I Ain’t Gonna Paint by Karen Beaumont
I think the parents and caregivers laughed the loudest I’ve ever heard right before we almost said “butt”. It seemed to be one of those days when the book and the crowd were perfectly matched. The kids had fun pretending to paint themselves with their imaginary paintbrushes and it was good body identification practice. It was a good warm-up before we started dancing.

Props
Shaker Eggs!

The Playlist

Hello & How Are You? — Old Town School of Folk Music
Hands Are for Clapping — Jim Gill
Everybody’s Jumping — Aaron Nigel Smith
Heartbeat — Laura Doherty
Milkshake — Old Town School of Folk Music
I Know a Chicken — Laurie Berkner
Maraca Cha-Cha — Monkey Monkey Music
Shake Hands With Friends — Ella Jenkins

How It Went

This was an ambitious playlist. I wound up skipping the song “Maraca Cha-Cha” because we were already over time and still had to say goodbye. I typically aim for my playlists to be between 16-18 minutes. With the book, introductions to each song and time to pass out/collect the prop, this works out well 95% of the time. Sometimes we end a little early and sometimes we have to skip a song.

Today’s first three songs all have instructions in the lyrics. My favorite was definitely Laura Doherty’s “Heartbeat” and I really enjoyed watching the caregivers/kids hug during the chorus of the song. My ultimate goal for this program is that parents and caregivers love it just as much as the kids!

For our shaker eggs, I pulled out two classics: “Milkshake” and “I Know a Chicken”. The kids loved these and really enjoyed hearing some favorites. “I Know a Chicken” is just one of those perfect Shake, Shimmy songs.

(For an example of the Powerpoint and handouts that I made for each Shake, Shimmy please visit the original post.)

Book Bundles: Weather

bookbundlesparentingpacks

For an overview of the Book Bundles and Parenting Packs early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

image

Itemized List

  • Backpack ($7.39) — 4Imprint
  • Like a Windy Day by Frank Asch ($7.00) — Baker & Taylor
  • Maisy’s Wonderful Weather Book by Lucy Cousins ($14.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Wow! Said the Owl by Tim Hopgood ($16.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Lakeshore Learning Storytelling Lapboard ($9.99) — Lakeshore Learning
  • Wally the Weather Dog Felt Figures ($19.95) — Amazon
  • Windsock ($8.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bags (2) ($5.98) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total: $93.83

I wanted a very general weather book and again went with a Maisy book, Maisy’s Wonderful Weather Book to cover all the weather. By doing this, I also was able to provide another book that I wouldn’t put in the general collection because of the pull tabs and pop-up aspects. Wow! Said the Owl besides being great fun also covers sunshine, rain, and rainbows which made it a great choice. And since I was including a wind activity, I decided that Like a Windy Day would round out the book collection in this Bundle.

One of the best activities for preschoolers about weather is choosing what kind of clothing is required for the weather. This helps them practice real-life skills and also is fun! So I chose a flannelboard and lapboard that included some science concepts (temperature), time concepts (yesterday, today, and tomorrow) and also had a fun dog to dress up.

The windsock was a “OH MY GOODNESS, PERFECT IDEA” moment. I was struggling with what else to include as a manipulative in this Bundle when it occurred that having a science experiment or observation item would be exactly what this Bundle needed. I wanted something that was easy to contain, didn’t require any extras for the family to provide, and didn’t have any replenishables for the library to manage. Observing a windsock is perfect! Families just need to go outside and hold it, or can hang it outside of their house/apartment.


It’s the middle of May and the Weather Book Bundle has gone out 12 times since launching at the end of November! I mildly regret not including anything related to snow since we are an Illinois library but…it was so complicated to try and figure out!

Outreach Storytime: 7/7

I do a regularly scheduled (sometimes twice monthly and sometimes just monthly) at a local business that we’ve partnered with. For these storytimes geared towards ages 3-6, I’ve thrown out themes! I’m just reading favorites books, new books that strike my fancy, and doing favorite flannels/props/activities. Materials starred are the ones used at the storytime. Other than this difference, I’ll report on these like I do with all of my other storytimes.

The Plan

Books

outreach-77

Can You Make a Scary Face? by Jan Thomas*
I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry*
This Book Just Ate My Dog! by Richard Byrne
Toot Toot Beep Beep by Emma Garcia*
Wow! Said the Owl by Tim Hopgood*

Extension Activities

Flannelboard: Ice Cream Colors*

Flannelboard: Pretty Ladybugs

Flannelboard: Seals on the Bus*

Folder Story: Scat the Cat*

Props: “Song Cube”*

Action Rhyme: “Zoom Zoom Zoom”*
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
If you want to take a trip,
Climb aboard my rocket ship,
Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon
5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blast off!
Credit: Jbrary

How It Went

This outreach storytime went well. The kids seemed to enjoy all of the books that I brought along with me, although Can You Make a Scary Face? was probably the biggest hit. My group really enjoyed the participatory nature of the book and I will definitely make a note to bring another Jan Thomas book with me next time. Other than that, I often forget how magical Scat the Cat is until I use it again!

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