Baby Storytime

babystorytime

Baby storytime came as a complete and utter surprise to me. A week before the storytime session started (and two weeks after I had arrived at my new library), a co-worker had to pass baby storytime off to me for both the spring and summer session. For the spring session, I went off of her plan since I didn’t have a lot of time. For the summer session, I grew more comfortable figuring things out. I relied heavily on Brooke’s blog and Kendra’s blog and Jbrary to learn songs that I didn’t know or to substitute songs/activities I was more comfortable with. If I changed something from spring to summer session, I will note it in the write-up.

Opening

Welcome & Guidelines
Hi everyone! My name is Miss Katie and I’ll be leading the baby storytime class this session. I’d like to go over some guidelines with you before we begin. Because I’m used to working with small people, I understand that accidents happen — I have tissue, wipes, and paper towels on both sides of the room in case of accidents. Bathrooms are located on either side of the storytime room, please feel free to use the bathrooms and supplies as needed.

We all want storytime to be a positive experience. If your child isn’t feeling up to storytime, please take them outside of the storytime room. You can always come back in after they’ve calmed down or you can always try storytime on another day. I’m okay with movement, but I would like to point out two areas that I need you to keep your child clear of: the area by the door and the area right in front of me. They don’t have to sit down, but they do have to leave these spaces.

babykateSince this is a lapsit program, babies may not be able to fully participate in the motions and fingerplays during songs. I’ll provide modifications, but please do what is most comfortable for you and your child. Lastly, I use Baby Kate to model for you how to interact. Baby Kate weighs next to nothing so my gestures will be much larger than yours need to be. Again, do what is comfortable for you and your child.

Name Fingerplay
I learned this from the co-worker I took over for at baby time. I loved it so much that I also brought it to toddler storytime!

Everyone introduces themselves one at a time. Together, we hold up our hands and trace our fingers as the group says each child’s name five times. Parents can run their finger around each of their child’s finger or tap each finger or touch each finger — whatever the child is comfortable with. Before we say the child’s name for the fifth time, we say “OOPS!” and on the “OOPS!”, I flick my finger up before going back to trace the last finger. (At “OOPS”, some parents give their child a tickle.) So it sounds like this: parent/child says “Hi, my name is Barb and this is Katie” and the group says “Katie (thumb), Katie (pointer), Katie (middle), Katie (ring), OOPS!, Katie (pinky).”

This gives each child a chance to clap for themselves. It’s a great way for the whole group to learn names together and it doesn’t take too long with my classes capped at twenty baby/parent pairs.

You can watch me demo the fingerplay in this video:

Opening Song
I used “Hands Are Clapping” which is to the tune of “Skip to My Lou”:
Hands are clapping, clap, clap, clap
Hands are clapping, clap, clap, clap
Hands are clapping, clap, clap, clap
Clap your hands, my darling!
Toes are tapping, fingers are wiggling, eyes are hiding “peek-a-boo”

Program

Typically, my library’s has a lot of extension activities planned, as well as 3-4 board books to work with a theme. We are lucky enough to have multiple board book sets, with 25 copies to pass out. My co-worker had planned to use different flannelboards, but for me it didn’t work in baby storytime. The only flannelboard I used is “The Shape Game” to introduce the theme.

Closing

Rhyme
I used Melissa‘s “This Is Big, Big, Big” as the beginning of my closing routine. I also use it in toddler time!

Song
Our closing song is also from my co-worker’s plan: “With My Little Hands”
With my little hands I go clap, clap, clap
With my little feet I go tap, tap, tap
With my little arms I wave bye, bye, bye
With my little legs I kick high, high, high
With my little eyes I play peek-a-boo
With my little mouth I say “I love you”

Bubbles
Young babies are fascinated with bubbles and older babies are using great muscles to reach bubbles and pop bubbles. It’s such a joy to watch them grow up and change how they interact with bubbles.

And that’s the bones of every baby program. I had a wonderful set of plans to ease into babytime and I felt very thankful to be taken care of so thoroughly.

In my write-ups, I’ll talk about what I actually used and what worked/didn’t. I’ll also likely talk about why I didn’t use some materials. As always, if I did a theme multiple times, I’ll write about all the sessions in the same post. Look for a weekly baby storytime update starting next week!

23 comments on “Baby Storytime

  1. Renee (Teacher of Tots)
    January 22, 2015 at 8:30 am #

    Do you use the regular small bottle of bubbles and a wand or do you use a battery operated or electric bubble blowers. My tots also love bubbles, but we have had a few bad experiences with the solution dripping all over and the battery bubble blowers not working much longer than the first few times of use. Can you give me additional insight as to how you manage this? We have tried other activities to close but they still want bubbles, so we need to find a way to make it work. Thanks

    • Katie
      February 21, 2015 at 3:18 pm #

      I use a little blue pan and a red bubble blower with multiple bubble holes that has been at my library for so long that no one remembers its origin. My other secret is Gymboree bubbles. They are the best in the entire world. I also blow straight up into the air so they have to wait for the bubbles to float down which helps prolong the activity. I’ve never used an electric bubble blower.

      • Coco
        March 28, 2015 at 1:56 pm #

        I do baby storytime as well. I really need to get m yhands on these Gymboree bubbles I keep hearing about! I’m also planning to try making my own. For some babies, bubbles are their favorite part! I do mine at the end, during “Twinkle, Twinkle,” and it is usually a hit. Thanks for posting your closing song. I’m thinking next session I might add one in. I usually end on Twinkle Twinkle, as mentioned above, but it would be nice to have a definitive “Good-bye” song.

  2. berasche
    January 22, 2015 at 3:26 pm #

    This is fabulous! Thank you for sharing your great outline 🙂

    • Katie
      February 21, 2015 at 3:18 pm #

      Thank you for The Shape Game!! 😀

  3. Ellen
    February 21, 2015 at 9:30 am #

    Hi Katie- my kids also love bubbles. We have an electric blower shaped like a whale and we sing the tiny Tim song and replace the word turtle with friend. For a while, I was blowing my own bubbles but that was really hard.

    • Katie
      February 21, 2015 at 3:28 pm #

      That sounds wonderful! I still do all the bubble blowing myself, but I might need to investigate this whale!

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