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Monkeys Storytime

The kit-testing continues! This week, I used the Monkeys theme. It doesn’t contain many titles even after I added a few, which was nice for me because all that book switching the last two weeks has been intense!

We read:

So Say the Little Monkeys by Nancy Van Laan

Tiny, tiny monkeys like to have fun, but they also need to build a shelter so they can stay out of the rain, stop sleeping on thorns, and keep away from jaguar. Unfortunately, they’re not strong on work ethic.

Interactivity factor: Medium. You can teach the kids the catchy refrain.

Kiki’s Blankie by Janie Bynum

Kiki never goes anywhere without her blankie, which has various uses and helps her imagine she’s a whole host of exciting characters. But when  her blanket blows away, she has to learn how to be brave all on her own to save it from the hungry crocodile!

Interactivity factor: Low, but you don’t need it to keep kids’ attention on this adorable book. It’s a great starting point for conversations about imagination and courage.

Banana by Ed Vere

Monkey 1 has a banana. Monkey 2 wants it. After arguments, tantrums, and reconciliations, the monkeys figure out that they can share the banana.

Interactivity factor: High. This book only uses two words: “banana” and “please.” That gives you opportunities to ask the kids what’s happening and what the monkeys are feeling. Don’t worry; the simple but expressive pictures make it easy for little ones to follow the story.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by Eileen Christelow

The classic rhyme in picture book form with a funny ending!

Interactivity factor: Huge! Chances are, every kid in your storytime knows this rhyme, and that means everyone can say it with you.

Flannelboard: Teasing Mr. Crocodile

I made the monkeys and palm tree out of felt, but we already had a great Folkmanis crocodile puppet in our kit, so instead of making a felt-odile, I used the puppet to snap the monkeys out of the tree. Very effective! After the unfortunate demise of all the monkeys, I told the kids that the moral to the story is, “Don’t tease large animals!”

Monkeys

Five silly monkeys swinging from a tree,

Teasing Mr. Crocodile, “You can’t catch me!”

Along came Mr. Crocodile, quiet as can be…

SNAP!

Monkeys for tea!

(Count down until…)

No more monkeys, swinging from a tree,

But here’s Mr. Crocodile, full as can be!

Songs

The Monkeys in the Zoo

The monkeys in the zoo turn round and round,
Round and round,
Round and round.
The monkeys in the zoo turn round and round,
Just like I do.

The monkeys in the zoo all touch their toes,
touch their toes,
touch their toes.
The monkeys in the zoo all touch their toes,
Just like I do.

The monkeys in the zoo all rub their tummies,
Rub their tummies,
Rub their tummies.
The monkeys in the zoo all rub their tummies,
Just like I do.

The monkeys in the zoo all pat their heads,
Pat their heads,
Pat their heads.
The monkeys in the zoo all pat their heads,
Just like I do.

The monkeys in the zoo jump up and down,
Up and down,
Up and down.
The monkeys in the zoo jump up and down,
Just like I do.

The monkeys in the zoo swing through the trees,
Through the trees,
Through the trees.
The monkeys in the zoo swing through the trees,
Just like I do.

Source: Rhymes and More

What Can a Monkey See From a Tree?

What can a Monkey see from a tree?
What can a Monkey see from a tree?
What can a Monkey see from a tree?
It can see a (ask child for an answer) from a tree!

Source: Cay’s Program Planning

Craft: Bendable Pipe Cleaner Monkeys from Busy Bee Kids Crafts

How It Went: I can’t tell you how much kids love monkeys. Suffice to say, it is A WHOLE BIG LOT. I’ve never been a monkey person myself, but I was definitely in the minority. Everyone loved all of the books. Kiki’s Blankie got the most laughs, but So Say the Little Monkeys got plenty of chuckles just because the kids think pictures of monkeys are funny. Of course the biggest hits were Teasing Mr. Crocodile and Five Little Monkey Jumping on the Bed because nearly everyone knew the words. Here is a sample of how we read Jumping on the Bed:

Me: Four little monkeys, jumping on the bed! And what do you think happened?

Kids: One fell off and bumped his head!

Me: He sure did! What did mama do?

Kids: Mama called the doctor!

Me: And the doctor saaaaaaid…?

All of us: NO MORE MONKEYS JUMPING ON THE BED!

We were ROARING, which made for a great finish.

The extension activities were great fun as well. We all had a good time pretending to be monkeys, and the kids had great ideas about what a monkey could see from a tree: leaves, another tree, bananas, the sky, a ladybug, a bird, a jaguar (hey! they picked that up from one of the books!), a lion, a hyena…and then we got a little silly.

The craft required the grown-ups to help out quite a bit, but I wanted to use it because it gave the kids something to take home that they could play with instead of sticking on the fridge.

This week: Clothing storytime! I’m nervous about this one as getting dressed is NOT as cool as monkeys, but I think I have some great books for it at least.

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