Virtual Storytime: Birds

For information on how virtual storytimes work at my library, please visit this post.

Materials

Books

[The four covers of the books listed below: Charlie Chick; Early Bird; Grumpy Bird; Riki’s Birdhouse.]

Charlie Chick by Nick Denchfield & Ant Parker*
Early Bird by Toni Yuly*
Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard*
Riki’s Birdhouse by Monica Wellington

Extension Activities

Flannelboard: Three Little Birds

Flannelboard: Ten Fluffy Chickens*

Prop Sticks: Blue Bird, Blue Bird*

Props: Song Cube

Puppets: Two Little Birds*

Planning

Another storytime that was converted to virtual. This was my last pre-pandemic scheduled storytime and I wasn’t going to let the planning go to waste!

After the success of doing emotions storytime, I definitely chose Grumpy Bird as my opening book for this theme since I would be able to engage the kids with making grumpy faces. I also encouraged the kids to get up and walk in place during the walking portion of the book — doing my best to keep a screen as interactive as possible to create a quality screen time experience. I also have to admit that I have a delightful “I’m WALKING” grumpy voice.

I planned to ask the kids to identify the color of the bird in the prop stick activity that was inspired by Mollie. I made all the different colors of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and used the rhythm of the text as my rhyme. To make this work via Zoom, I cut down my colors to just: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. Then, I planned to ask participants to type the first letter of the color in the chat (R, O, Y, G, B, or V) or the name of the color I brought out OR to hold up an item that was the color they wanted to guess to their webcam.

How It Went

Both of the books were definitely enjoyed by the group! I was curious to see if Charlie Chick, which is a pop-up book, would translate over Zoom and it totally did. I honestly think it might have worked better than in-person because everyone was centered in one area and I didn’t have to “pop” each page multiple times so it could be seen.

“Ten Fluffy Chickens” was a great flannelboard because I could see the kids following along by clapping during the “cackle, cackle, cackle” part right before the reveal. Since this is such a short flannelboard, I always do it several times to build that repetition. By the end of the third time, nearly every child was following along!

I really felt like I was getting into a Zoom rhythm at this point. The butterflies (for me!) had definitely settled and it felt like everyone had settled into how virtual storytimes were working for us.


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