Story time: Ocean Animals

“Rub-a-Dub Sub” by Linda Ashman
“The Pout-Pout Fish” by Deborah Diesen
“I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean” by Kevin Sherry

Five Little Fishies
Five little fishies swimming in the sea (swimming motion)
Teasing Mr. Shark, “No you can’t catch me, no you can’t catch me” (wave finger side to side)
Along comes Mr. Shark as quiet as can be… (whisper, move hands together slowly)
And snaps that fishie right out of the sea (clap hands)

(count down)
I had one child beg me to not let the last fish be eaten so we ended it with “but the fishie was too fast for Mr. Shark and got away.”

Baby Shark
Baby shark doot-doo, doot-doo-doo (tap thumb and pointer finger together)
Baby shark doot-doo, doot-doo-doo
Baby shark doot-doo, doot-doo-doo
Baby shark

(repeat with…)
Mommy shark… (open and close hand)
Daddy shark… (open and close hands widely)
Grandpa shark.. (open and close hands with closed fist)
Going swimming… (pretend to swim)
See a shark… (make looking motion)
Swimming fast… (pretend to swim quickly)
Safe at last… (wipe forehead)
Bye-bye shark… (wave goodbye)

The Waves in the Ocean
The waves in the ocean go up and down, up and down, up and down (raise and lower arms)
The waves in the ocean go up and down all day long

(repeat with…)
The crabs in the ocean go pinch, pinch, pinch (open and close hands)
The sharks in the ocean go snap, snap, snap (open and close hand widely)
The fish in the ocean go swim, swim, swim (make swiming motion)

I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean by Kevin Sherry Flannel Board
I love this book and thought it would translate well into a felt board and it definitely did! I wish I had enough time to actually make it out of felt but all I did was print off clip art images, laminate them and then put velcro on the back. Kids loved it!

For this craft all I did was cut out cardstock ocean animals. Kids then put glue all over their animal and put down tissue paper. For the final touch we added some eyes!

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Book Review: Zero Repeat Forever by G.S. Prendergast

Zero Repeat Forever by G.S. Prendergast



Summary: “He has no voice, or name, only a rank, Eighth. He doesn’t know the details of the mission, only the directives that hum in his mind.

Dart the humans. Leave them where they fall.

His job is to protect his Offside. Let her do the shooting.

Until a human kills her…

Sixteen year-old Raven is at summer camp when the terrifying armored Nahx invade, annihilating entire cities, taking control of the Earth. Isolated in the wilderness, Raven and her friends have only a fragment of instruction from the human resistance.

Shelter in place.

Which seems like good advice at first. Stay put. Await rescue. Raven doesn’t like feeling helpless but what choice does she have?

Then a Nahx kills her boyfriend.

Thrown together in a violent, unfamiliar world, Eighth and Raven should feel only hate and fear. But when Raven is injured, and Eighth deserts his unit, their survival comes to depend on trusting each other…”

Review: This book is very similar to “The Fifth Wave” in the fact that a strange “other” race has come to take over Earth but I felt that it fell flat.  I’ll start off by saying that it took me a while to read this book. I picked it up, put it down and read a few other books in between but last night I was determined to finish it! The reason why it took me so long is because I found it to be slow. There is a lot of time in the book where not much is happening, they are just waiting around trying to figure out what to do. Another issue I had was that there are a lot of unanswered questions that I’m guessing/hoping will be answered in the next book in the series. The most interesting character in my opinion is the Nahx. I’m intrigued by what exactly they are, why they travel in male and female pairs and their ranking system. That is really what I wanted to know more about. I found the human characters to be frustrating and lacking. At times Raven comes off as this badass chick and then other time she seems like a damsel in distress. There is also the weird relationship between Raven, her not so great ex-boyfriend who is idealized and his twin brother that I just couldn’t wrap my head around. The book was decent but I fear that a lot of people won’t be able to get by the slow pace of it. Even though I am curious to find out more about the Nahx I will not be reading the second book in the series.

* I received an advance copy with at Book Expo America

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Storytime: Boats

“Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen
“Busy boats” by Tony Mitton

Splashin Up and Down
Splashin up and down in my little red rowboat (lapbounce or pretend to row)
Splashin up and down in my little red rowboat
Splashin up and down in my little red rowboat
Won’t you be my darling

(repeat with)
Lookin out to sea in my little red rowboat (shield eyes)
Waving to a whale in my little red rowboat (wave)
Don’t stand up or you might tip over (lean to the side)

Motorboat, motorboat, go so sloooow (roll hands slowly)
Motorboat, motorboat, go so sloooow
Motorboat, motorboat, step on the gas (tap foot)

Motorboat, motorboat go so fast (roll hands quickly)
Motorboat, motorboat, go so fast
Motorboat, motorboat, CRASH (clap)

Row, Row, Row Your Boat
Row, row row your boat gently down the stream
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily life is but a dream

Row, row, row your boat gently to the river
If you see a polar bear, don’t forget to shiver

Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream
If you see a crocodile don’t forget to scream

Row, row, row your boat gently to the shore
If you see a lion, don’t forget to roar!

Five Sailboats
Tune: Five Little Ducks


5 sailboats went out one day (hold up 5 fingers)
Over the waves and far away (move hand up and down)
With the wind they begin to rock (lean side to side)
And 1 little sailboat returns to dock

(count down)

Sailboats in the Water
Tune: Do You Know the Muffin Man

To make the sailboats I used a cut out machine we have and used different colors. The kids love this type of activity and get really excited when it is their turn.

If you have a (color) sailboat, a (color) sailboat, a (color) sailboat
If you have a (color) sailboat, put it in the water!

For the craft I cut paper plates in half and used a razor to make a slit near the top. Next I cut out boats. Children colored the boats and glued them to the popsicle stick. Then they colored the plate and some drew fish in their water. They can put the popsicle stick inside of the plate and move the boat around like it is floating on the water!

IMG_3362 (1).jpg



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Storytime: Construction


“Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site” by Sherri Duskey Rinker
“Construction Kitties” by Judy Sue Goodwin Sturges
“One Big Building” by Michael Dahl

Five Little Nails
(you can just say this rhyme or sing it to the tune of “This Old Man”)

Five little nails, standing straight and steady (hold up 5 fingers)
Here I come with my hammer ready (make fist with other hand)
With a bam, bam, bam (tap fist to a finger)
That nail goes down (lower finger)
Now there’s just four little nails to pound

(count down)

Johnny Works with One Hammer
Johnny works with one hammer, one hammer, one hammer (tap fist on thigh or floor)
Johnny works with one hammer
Now he works with two (hold up both fists)
Johnny works with two hammers, two hammers, two hammers (tap both fists)
Johnny works with two hammers
Now he works with three (hold up both fists and kick out leg)
Johnny works with three hammers, three hammers, three hammers (tap fists and foot)
Johnny works with three hammers
Now he works with four (hold up both fists and kick out both legs)
Johnny works with four hammers, four hammers, four hammers (tap fists and feet)
Johnny works with four hammers
Now he works with five (hold up both fists, kick out both legs and nod head)
Johnny works with five hammers, five hammers, five hammers (tap fists, feet and nod head)
Johnny works with five hammers
And now he takes a rest!

Old MacDonald Has Some tools


Old MacDonald has some tools, e-i-e-i-o
And with those tools he has a hammer, e-i-e-i-o
With a bang, bang here and a bang, bang there
Here a bang, there a bang, everywhere a bang, bang
Old MacDonald has some tools, e-i-e-i-o

(repeat with)
Saw – see saw
Wrench – turn turn
Screwdriver – twist twist
Pliers – pinch pinch
Drill – zzz zzz


For this craft children colored pre-cut out construction vehicles and glued them to a piece of construction paper. Next they put glue where they wanted their dirt/sand to go. Then we put their paper into a tin, poured a cup of dirt/sand over it and shook out the extra. Some of the children went back and forth adding glue and more dirt/sand because they enjoyed it so much!

How It Went:

I have done a construction theme in the past and wasn’t the biggest fan of it. This time the storytime was a hit! Their favorite song was definitely “Johnny Works with One Hammer,” even the parents got into it and the favorite book was “Construction Kitties.” I thought the families would enjoy the Old MacDonald song but that didn’t go over well (maybe because it was the last song I sang and they were starting to get antsy), I ended up cutting the song short. This was also the favorite craft we have done so far, it’s very simple to set up and the kids loved! I even had parents tell me that they plan on recreating it at home.


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Storytime: Summer


“Mouse’s First Summer” by Lauren Thompson
“One Hot Summer Day” by Nina crews
“Sea, Sand, Me” by Patricia Hubbell

Mr. Sun
Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun (circle arms overhead)
Please shine down on me
Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun
Hiding behind a tree (shield eyes)
These little children are asking you
To please come out so we can play with you (beckoning motion with hand)
Mr. Sun, sun, Mr. Gold Sun (circle arms overhead)
Please shine down on me

Going to the Pool
Tune: If you’re Happy and You Know It
To encourage families to sing along I had them say the part in italics.


If you’re gong to the pool wear your suit, wear your suit
If you’re going to the pool wear your suit, wear your suit
If you’re going to the pool then a suit will keep you cool
If you’re going to the pool wear your suit, wear your suit

(repeat with: hat, flip flops, sunglasses)

5 Little Seashells

IMG_32115 little seashells lying on the shore (hold up 5 fingers)
Swish went the waves (move arms in wave motion)
And then there were 4
4 little seashells pretty as can be
Swish went the waves
And then there were 3
3 little seashells all pearly new
Swish went the waves
And then there were 2
2 little seashells lying in the sun
Swish went the waves
And then there was 1
1 little seashell lying all alone
I picked it up and I took it home

So Many Shells
Each child was given a different color shell, when I said their color they put their shell on the board.

There are so many shells in the hot, hot sand
What color shell is in my hand?
If you have a (color) shell, come on up and put it on the sand


Craft – Kite
I got this idea from Lovely Commotion, check out their blog for the full instructions. Children colored/drew on the bags, put stickers on them and then taped streamers. Once they were done the child (with the parents help) added the string. Children had a great time making these and loved twirling around the room with them.



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Book Review: The Child by Fiona Barton

“The Child” by Fiona Barton



Summary:“As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it’s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?

As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier: A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found. Her heartbroken parents were left devastated by the loss.

But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn—house by house—into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. And she soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women—and torn between what she can and cannot tell…”

Review: This is a great psychological thriller with intriguing characters. What makes this thriller stand out is the characters. None of the characters get lost and they all have very distinct lives and personalities. You can’t help but feel like you personally know each of the women involved in this story. Although I enjoyed this book I did find it to be drawn out at times and had unnecessary plot lines (for example – we briefly hear about trouble at home for Kate but it is never expanded upon or resolved). I also was able to figure out the plot twist before it actually occurred in the book which does put a damper on the reading experience. Even though I was able to solve the mystery before the book I still really enjoyed it. I will definitely be recommending this book to my friends who enjoy a good thriller!


*please note that I received an advanced copy of the book from NetGalley

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Storytime: Fruits/Vegetables

Today’s storytime was all about fruits, vegetables and healthy eating. Summer is a great time to talk about nutrition because so many delicious fruits and veggies are in season. The Farmer’s Markets are just starting up and I thought this was a great way to celebrate!


“The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle
“How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food?” by Jane Yolen
“Lunch” by Denise Fleming


I’ve been looking for an excuse to use this puppet from Discount School Supplies and I must say it was such a hit! The kids absolutely loved feeding the caterpillar and then watching him turn into a butterfly. This was also a great opportunity to talk about which foods we can eat a lot of and often and which ones we should save for a special treat!

Picked a Berry (Tune: Clementine)
Picked a blueberry, picked a blueberry (picking motion)
That was growing in the sun (circle arms above head)
Then I washed it and I ate it (pretend to eat)
And I picked another one

(repeat with other berries such as strawberries, blackberries, etc)

Source: Jbrary

Fruit Salad Salsa by Laurie Berkner Band
with egg shakers

Five Fat Peas
Five fat peas (hold up 5 fingers)
In a peapod pressed (intertwine fingers)
1 grew, 2 grew and so did all the rest (raises fingers 1 by 1)
They grew and they grew and they didn’t stop (slowly bring hands apart)
They grew so fat that the peapod POPPED! (clap)

Five Ripe Berries

IMG_3017Five ripe berries sitting in a bowl (hold up 5 fingers)
The strawberry fell out and started to roll (roll arms)
It bumped the table (tap knee)
And hit my toe (tap toe)
how many berries in the bowl? (shrug)

Count down
(blueberry, raspberry, blackberry, cherry)

Fruit Kabobs

IMG_3015To encourage children to try some new fruits I made fruit kabobs with mango, strawberry, cantaloupe, melon, pineapple and watermelon. Most of the kids have never tried mango and really enjoyed it! I used straws instead of skewers.

C is for Caterpillar Craft

IMG_3014Children glued pom-poms onto the caterpillar. We discussed how each pom-pom can represent a different healthy food that the caterpillar ate and tried to guess what some of the colors could be.

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Book Review: Release by Patrick Ness

“Release” by Patrick Ness



Description: “Inspired by Mrs Dalloway and Judy Blume’s Forever, Release is one day in the life of Adam Thorn, 17. It’s a big day. Things go wrong. It’s intense, and all the while, weirdness approaches…

Adam Thorn is having what will turn out to be the most unsettling, difficult day of his life, with relationships fracturing, a harrowing incident at work, and a showdown between this gay teen and his preacher father that changes everything. It’s a day of confrontation, running, sex, love, heartbreak, and maybe, just maybe, hope. He won’t come out of it unchanged. And all the while, lurking at the edges of the story, something extraordinary and unsettling is on a collision course.”

Review: I was so excited when I was able to get an advanced copy of “Release” and quickly read through it. Very rarely do I give half stars but this book was on the verge of being a 4 star book for me. What prevented me from giving it the full 4 stars is that the book is comprised of 2 different stories. There is the beautiful story of Adam Thorn, a character who you can’t help but fall in love with, and a strange paranormal story that left me confused more than anything.

This story really struck me. I recently was talking to an ex-moron friend about the difficult time her best friend had coming out to his religious family. It baffles and upsets me that there is still a stigma around the LGBT community. This book is very timely and is a must read for many people. Adam Thorn is such a likeable and relatable character. Patrick Ness does an amazing job of making the character so realistic. The book follows Adam for just 1 day but it is a day full of meaning for him. After I finished the book I was shocked by how many emotions I felt following just 1 day. Adam’s story is beautiful and sad all at once.

As for the odd paranormal sections… early on you learn about a girl who was murdered in the town. This girl comes back as a strange spirit queen looking for revenge. These sections did not add anything to the story for me and if anything I thought they took away from Adam’s story. I’m very curious to know why Patrick Ness felt the need to add this second story. I think the paranormal story would have been better off as a separate book.

I will definitely be recommending this book to other adults and high schoolers!

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Storytime: Art


“The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse” by Eric Carle
“I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More” by Karen Beaumont
Before reading “I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More” I gave each child a clean paint brush. I instructed the child or caregiver to brush the body part mentioned. The kids got a kick out of joining in!
“Mouse Paint” by Ellen Stoll Walsh

This is the Way (Tune: Mulberry Bush)
This is the way we stir the paint, stir the paint, stir the paint (stirring motion)
This is the way we stir the paint so early in the morning
This is the way we dip our brush, dip our brush, dip our brush (dipping motion)
This is the way we dip our brush so early in the morning
This is the way we paint our picture, paint our picture, paint our picture (up and down strokes)
This is the way we paint our picture so early in the morning

Five Little Paintbrushes


Five little paintbrushes went out to paint
One painted white than ran away
The second painted red and jumped on the bed
The third painted green and fled the scene
The fourth painted black than ran around the back
The fifth painted yellow and felt so mellow
Then he invited everybody back!

Rainbow Song (Tune: Hush Little Baby)


Rainbow purple
Rainbow blue
Rainbow green
and yellow too
Rainbow orange
Rainbow red
Rainbow shining over head

Come and count the colors with me
How many colors can you see?

I Know
First I put all of the colors up and we went over our colors again. Then I told them to close their eyes and took one away. I asked children to tell me what color was missing. To help some children I put up the rainbow to remind them of the colors.
I know the colors of the rainbow
Do you know them too?
If one color were missing
Would you know which hue?

Color Song (Tune: Knick Knack Paddy Whack)
Red, red, red touch your head
Blue, blue, blue tie your shoe
Brown, brown, brown bend and touch the ground
White, white, white take a bite
Black, black, black touch your back
Purple, purple, purple turn in a circle
Pink, pink, pink give a wink
Gray, gray, gray now shout hooray!

Each child was given a butterfly already cut out, hole punched and tied with ribbon. The children painted 1 half of the butterfly and folded it in half to create the same pattern on the other side. This was a very simple craft to prep and the kids had so much fun painting and were amazed when they folded the butterfly.

FullSizeRender (2)

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Baby Storytime Favorites: Lap Bounces

When I first started having babies in story time I was very intimidated. I was used to have preschoolers who would answer open-ended questions and followed along to songs. I quickly learned that for baby story time it is important to speak instructions and use a stuffed animal to demonstrate (I still feel silly doing this but parents appreciate it). The first time I tried lap bounces I tired some parents out by lifting their child so often, moving forward I inform them they they can lift their child or raise their arms.


Here are some of my favorite lap bounces to use:

Bouncing, Bouncing
Bouncing, bouncing baby on my knee (bounce child)
Bouncing, bouncing
1, 2, 3 (lift child or raise their arms)
Clapping, clapping with baby on my knee (clap child’s hands)
Clapping, clapping
1, 2, 3
Hugging, hugging baby on my knee (hug child)
Hugging, hugging
1, 2, 3

Giddy-up, giddy-up ride to town (bounce child)
Giddy-up, giddy-up, up and down
Giddy-up fast (bounce quickly)
Giddy-up slow (bounce slowly)
Giddy-up, giddy-up, giddy-up (bounce child)
WHOOAH (dip child to side and dip between legs)

Grand Old Duke of York
The Grand Old Duke of York (bounce child)
He had ten thousand men
He march them up to the top of the hill (lift child or raise their arms)
And he marched them down again

And when they’re up, they’re up (lift child or raise their arms)
And when they’re down, they’re down
And when they’re only half way up
They’re neither up nor down

Icka Bicka Soda Cracker
Icka bicka soda cracker (bounce child)
Icka bicka boo
Icka bicka soda cracker
Up goes you! (life child or raise their arms)

Icka bicka soda cracker (bounce child)
Icka bicka boo
Icka bicka soda cracker
I love you (hug child)

Jack Be Nimble
I encourage parents to use their own child’s name.
Jack be nimble, jack be quick (bounce child on one knee)
Jack jumped over the candlestick (lift them to the other knee)

Mother, Father and Uncle John
Mother, father and Uncle John (bounce child)
Went to town one by one
Mother fell off (lean child to one side)
Father fell off (lean child to other side)
But Uncle John went on and on and on (bounce quickly)

Don’t miss out on Baby Storytime Favorites: Rhymes/Songs!


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