Preschool Storytimes

preschoolstorytime

Hello and welcome to Preschool Storytime! This is the page where I explain my typical preschool storytime routine. First things first, preschool storytime is for ages 3-6 and is an “on our own” storytime setting where caregivers do not attend with their child. Which means that my storytime runs more akin to a classroom setting. I do have an adult volunteer in the room with me who is able to shuttle kids back to their caregivers if they need the restroom.

Opening

Welcome & Introductions
This happens as I greet each child at the door instead of as a large group. I make sure that each child knows my name and either Miss K or Miss J’s name depending on what day it is. I introduce myself to the caregiver if I don’t already know them. I answer any questions for caregivers and I help the children separate from their grown-up. Most of the kids separate just fine (I had only one child who never separated this session and their grown-up just sat in the back with them), even if it takes a few weeks.

Name Tags
Each child has a pre-made name tag with Velcro on the back to attach to our free-standing flannelboard. I use this to take attendance and to learn everyone’s names. After I shut the door, we count how many friends are here today using the name tags. We also sort them by color (I always have two colors). I’m trying to think of a way to make the name tags more exciting next session. Maybe stickers for each week that they come. I’m not sure yet.

Opening Song
I sing “It’s Time to Say Hello to All My Friends” which I learned from Jbrary. (The video link is actually the goodbye version. For hello, I sing “It’s time to say hello to all my friends, it’s time to say hello to all friends, it’s time to say hello, stretch up high and touch your toe, it’s time to say hello to all my friends.”

Letter of the Day
When I took over preschool storytimes, I made the decision to buy Lakeshore Learning’s Alphabet Teaching Tubs for the library. I use them in the same way that I did during Growing Readers storytime. I pulled out items and the kids identify them. Then we practice the sound of the letter together: “S-s-s-sun!” Afterwards, I ask them to help me find the lowercase letter and the uppercase letter: “What color is the uppercase S?”

Program
I plan a lot more than I actually use. I plan 3-4 books, 1-2 puppet activities, 1-2 flannelboard activities, 1-2 music choices, and 4 fingerplays/movement that I can grab. There is absolutely no way that I would USE all of these activities, books, and songs in a single program, but I wanted to have them.

Closing

Rhyme
I used Melissa‘s “This Is Big, Big, Big” as the beginning of my closing routine. I use it in every storytime program that I do. Ever. They love it!

Closing Song
I sing “It’s Time to Say Goodbye to All My Friends”. I always tell the kids if they can’t wink, to cover one eye and be a pirate. This

Take-Homes
Since caregivers are not in the room with us, I included a take-home handout that directly explains why I chose to do specific activities and what skills we are working on during the class. I also had a simple craft included so that caregivers could participate at home on the theme of the week. I also decided to include this activity because my co-worker used to do crafts during the class. I didn’t want to use class time, but still wanted to give the kids that chance to create at home. These were packaged together in a plastic ziploc bag every week.

There you have the framework of my preschool storytimes. 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.

11 comments on “Preschool Storytimes

  1. Kimberly
    May 26, 2016 at 3:08 pm #

    Hi Katie. Thank you for the post and the great details about your preschool storytime. I’m curious–what are the benefits of doing an “on our own” storytime? Why did your library decide to run storytime this way?

    • Katie
      June 7, 2016 at 1:37 pm #

      Our library has done this for as long as I’ve been here. Sixty percent of our patrons agree that “on our own” storytime prepares their child for kindergarten by “a significant amount” and the other forty percent said “a great deal”. We still have an all-ages storytime that caregivers can attend with their child. Most of our families come to both, so they get the caregiver benefits at Family Storytime.

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