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Colors Storytime

During my two-week storytime break, the new books for our storytime kits arrived. Now, I already had all my storytimes planned out through April and felt ridiculously proud of myself for it, but when I thought about refreshing the storytime kits and expecting other staff to use them when I hadn’t tested them myself, I felt like a bad manager. Consequently, I decided to shift my storytime plans to next year and spend the rest of this storytime season testing the revamped kits. Yeah!

For my first storytime of the new year, I went with the Colors kit. This kit didn’t need a lot of help, as it already had some classics like Mouse Paint, but I added a few new favorites as well as fingerplays and a new flannel set. In order to test the greatest number of materials, I read different books at each session, so the list is going to look super-long this time.

We read:

Dog’s Colorful Day: A Messy Story about Colors and Counting by Emma Dodd

An adorable dog goes about his day and gets into various messes. He starts the day with one black spot, but after encounters with jam, mud, grass, paint, and more, Dog has a rainbow of countable spots!

Interactivity factor: High. Kids seem to enjoy naming the colors and counting Dog’s spots.

Lemons Are Not Red by Laura Vaccaro Seeger

Every other spread shows a familiar item in the wrong color, followed by a spread that shows the item in the correct color.

Interactivity factor: High. You can ask the kids what color the item should be, and since the background is always the right color, they have a visual cue.

The Lion and the Little Red Bird by Elisa Kleven

A little red bird notices a lion whose tail tuft changes colors every day, but since they don’t speak the same language, he cannot tell her why. Finally, one stormy night, the lion rescues the bird and gives her shelter in his cave, which is covered in beautiful pictures the lion paints every night with his tail.

Interactivity factor: Low. I mean, you CAN ask about the different colors on the pages, but the art is so beautiful and the story so sweet, attention spans shouldn’t be a problem.

Freight Train by Donald Crews

A toddler-level favorite, this simple story about a rainbow-colored train is a big hit with boys.

Interactivity levels: “Hey kids, what does a train sound like? Okay, keep doing that.” And you’re set!

Butterfly Butterfly: A Book of Colors by Petr Horácek

A little girl looking for a colorful butterfly finds a rainbow of other backyard creatures. The surprise pop-up butterfly at the end is a show-stopper.

Interactivity factor: Low. You can ask the kids what color the bugs and whatnot are, but they’re going to have a tough time telling you since a spider the book calls brown is actually red, brown, and green, and even solid-color critters aren’t the single, ROYGBIV colors kids can identify easily.

Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh

Three white mice find paint in primary colors, paint themselves, and have a great time dancing in paint puddles to mix new colors. Adorable.

Interactivity factor: Medium. Ask the kids to do a mouse dance with you to mix the colors!

Blue Goose by Nancy Tafuri

Some farm birds paint a completely white farm world while the farmer is gone. Charming art, and it covers primary and secondary colors.

Interactivity factor: Low, but kids love the pictures.

Flannelboard: Little White Rabbit’s Color Book

Flannel Friday post to come. Really.

Extension Activities:

If You’re Wearing Any Red

If you’re wearing any blue, any blue

If you’re wearing any blue, any blue

If you’re wearing any blue put your finger on your shoe

If you’re wearing any blue, any blue

red…put your finger on your head

yellow…smile like a handsome fellow

brown…turn your smile into a frown

black…pat yourself on the back

white…jump up with all your might

Source: King County Library System

Color Birds

Yellow bird, yellow bird,
High in a tree,
How many yellow things
Can you see?

Blue bird, blue bird,
High in a tree,
How many blue things
Can you see?

Red bird, red bird,
High in a tree,
How many blue things
Can you see?

Black bird, black bird,
High in a tree,
How many black things
Can you see?

Green bird, green bird,
High in a tree,
How many green things
Can you see?

White bird, white bird,
High in a tree,
How many white things
Can you see?

Orange bird, orange bird,
High in a tree,
How many orange things
Can you see?

Purple bird, purple bird,
High in a tree,
How many purple things
Can you see?

Brown bird, brown bird,
High in a tree,
How many brown things
Can you see?

Source: Step by Step

Craft: Dog’s Colorful Day dot pictures

My predecessor left a reproducible picture of Dog. Kids can stick various colors of those round price tag stickers from the office supply aisle on him. I didn’t feel like that was involved enough, so I got white stickers and we colored our stickers and made up new stories about how Dog got his spots.

How It Went: I’m trying out a new schedule and the weather was nasty this week, so I had low turnouts. However, the kids who did show up seemed to love this theme. The favorite books were Dog’s Colorful Day, The Lion and the Little Red Bird, and Butterfly Butterfly, but only for the pop-up page, which they wanted to see several times. The favorite extension activity was “Color Birds.” They loved the I Spy aspect. Oh, and the felt set just AWED them. They already liked me, but after seeing me make that bunny change colors with empty pails, now they think I am MAGIC.


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