This week’s letter was R for Rhyming! Rhyming, as all storytime librarians know, is a great way to promote phonological awareness. Plus, so many amazing picture books rhyme.
Rhyming Dust Bunnies by Jan Thomas
The Rhyming Dust Bunnies are funny and adorable, drawn in Thomas’s usual straightforward, attractive, group-share-friendly style. A couple of things, though: Be sure you explain what a dust bunny is, because preschoolers don’t know. If you ask them, they will say, “A bunny!” and that is not an accurate definition at all. Also, you’re probably going to have to explain the vacuum cleaner, as it’s a canister vac and not many people have those anymore.
Silly Sally by Audrey Wood
A classic! Silly Sally goes to town, walking backwards upside-down, and meets several interesting new friends along the way.
Concept: Rhyming. Cumulative stories.
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr.
The lowercase letters of the alphabet have a race to the top of a coconut tree, but their weight and the crowding causes a painful fall. Luckily their grown-ups (the uppercases) are there to tend to their wounds. I love this classic partly for the great rhythm-n-rhyme and partly because it’s one of the few alphabet books with an actual plot.
Concept: Rhyming. Letter recognition.
Flannelboard (sort of):
Rhyming Dust Bunnies Dry Erase
I wanted us to do some free-rhyming, so I printed off a picture of the Rhyming Dust Bunnies from Jan Thomas’s website, laminated the page, cut the bunnies out, and taped them to the dry erase board on my easel. Then we picked short words and came up with rhymes for the Bunnies. We even, as you can see, found some words to help Bob rhyme with the other bunnies!
This photo is from the first day. I forgot to bring a Kleenex to erase the board and had to use my hand. Smeary.
It’s easy to find action songs for rhyming storytime. Most songs rhyme! I chose Jim Gill’s Sneezing Song and asked the storytimers for foods that rhymed with sneeze instead of just singing it through. We also did Jump Up Turn Around by the same artist.
Die cut leaves, cardboard tubes, foam letter stickers. Chicka Chicka BOOM your craft is done.
How It Went:
We had good sized crowds this week due to spring break. I got to see some former storytimers who no longer get to attend because they’re in school this year. All three books this week were super silly, so both sessions were giggly. The first group were pros at rhyming. The second group understood rhyming, but started going the “make up words that fit” route. Whatever, at least they have the concept! I had one family come to both sessions because the little boy is apparently obsessed with Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. One 3-year-old girl who seemed completely zoned out turned out to have been paying attention all along: she was parading through the library with her craft chanting “Chicka chicka boom boom!”
I know that it’s easy to incorporate rhyme into other themes. In fact, it’s nearly impossible NOT to! However, I definitely felt that focusing on the concept was important and extremely fun.
Next week: Spring! Which would be easier if the random snow flurries would bug off…