Monday, April 29, 2019

Picture Book Book List: Math

Using math in storytime always seemed intimidating to me until I attended a STEAM programming seminar. One of the presenters spoke about incorporating math books and activities into storytimes  and it was like a revelation to me! Ever since then, I have been keeping my eyes peeled for math picture books which also read aloud well. Many of these titles are new, but quite a few are ones I remember from my childhood. They're all wonderful for reading at storytime or one-on-one. I've marked which age group I've used them on to the most success, but I encourage you to try them all and see for yourself!

Multiplication- PreSchool, School Age

Balance, Size, and Weight- Toddlers

Counting in large quantities and Skip Counting- PreSchool, School Age

Biography and Math in the World- PreSchool, School Age

Geometry- Preschool

Geometry- PreSchool, School Age

Measuring- PreSchool, School Age

Counting & Subtraction- Toddlers, PreSchool

Even and odd numbers- PreSchool, School Age

Counting & Ordinal Numbers- Toddlers, PreSchool

Fractions & Math in the World- PreSchool, School Age

Graphing- PreSchool, School Age

Geometry- PreSchool, School Age

Telling Time- PreSchool, School Age

Skip Counting and Estimation- PreSchool, School Age

Infinity- School Age

Negative Numbers- PreSchool, School Age

Fair Division, PreSchool, School Age

Math in the World- PreSchool, Grade School

Math in the World- PreSchool, School Age
*This author has several others which are equally fun

Measuring- PreSchool, School Age

Multiplication- PreSchool, School Age

Math in the World- PreSchool, School Age

Multiplication- School Age

Division and Skip Counting- PreSchool, School Age

Place Value- School Age

Probability- School Age

Division- School Age

Geometry- School Age

Geometry- School Age
*There are many more in this series

Geometry and Math in the World- School Age

Counting- Toddlers, PreSchool

Addition- PreSchool, School Age

Division- PreSchool, School Age

Skip Counting- PreSchool, School Age

Zero- PreSchool, School Age

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Picture Book Art: Eric Carle

One of the most popular programs at the children's museum where I used to work was an art program where we created pieces based on stories we read. I wanted to try a program with that idea, but make it a little more picture book- based. Hence, Picture Book Art! We started by talking about the difference between an author and an illustrator (and how sometimes they're the same person). Then we read The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse by Eric Carle, talked about collages/how to make them, and got start making our own collage masterpieces! This program was for 2-5 year olds and took about 30 minutes.

Art in action:

We used glue and tissue paper to cover animals however we chose, although we did talk about how in the book we read, Eric Carle chose to use one color family per animal. Eric Carle's specific method of collage was a little complicated for 2-5 year olds, so we had a video playing in the background where he explains how he does his illustrations:

This program was a lot of fun! I love doing huge programs, but sometimes it feels really good to do a quiet program where families feel like they can settle in together and work however they feel. The simple collage method we did felt just right for this age group, but it would be fun to try it the exact way Eric Carle does it (but definitely with older kids since it would involve a knife and/or scissors). I can't wait to try another session with a new artist in the fall!

Friday, March 29, 2019

Family Camp-In

I like to do a larger indoor program in late winter/early spring and this year's  theme was camping! This program was for 2-5 year olds plus their caregivers and was designed to run about 30 minutes, but some families stayed more like 45-60. Here's what we were up to:

Camping Puzzles were printables I found online. The one up top had kids pick a random number and add that many fireflies to the night sky. The lower puzzle had kids rearrange a picture that had been cut into strips.

Going Fishing was very popular- our library's play fishing poles could actually reel the fish in!

Marshmallow Art was also very popular- kids used different sizes of marshmallows to create art.

At the S'more Games station, kids could build s'mores by matching the colors and shapes on graham crackers (cardboard squares), chocolate (felt & fabric paint), and marshmallows (giant pom-poms). They could also sort marshmallows on sticks by color or by rhyming word family.

The tents were also super popular. I had a bunch of camping themed books on hand to read inside & then check out, but families also had fun just pretending to camp. You can also see our fire building station in the bottom corner.

The fire building station in action. A family was kind enough to let us borrow this fabric rocks, logs, and fire set just for this program!

The snack- s'mores trail mix. I wish there was a way  to safely and easily do s'mores, but trail mix made out of mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and teddy grahams was a very tasty second choice.

This program was a ton of fun! It was great seeing all the surprised faces when they came in to see two big tents set up in our storytime rooms and I think families had a really good time. I'd like to do camping again in a year or two, maybe in the fall when we could pitch a giant tent outside. Happy trails!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Baby Explorers: Spring 2019

Baby Explorers is one of my new favorite programs! My idea for it is to give babies sensory opportunities as they explore the world around them (and hopefully caregivers can easily recreate the activities at home). To that end, I try to have four stations: Gross Motor, Fine Motor, Create, and Explore. This program was 30 minutes and kids 0-36 months were invited, but most ended up being 6-20 months. Here's what we were up to this spring:

Gross Motor
We ran, jumped, stomped, and punched a huge section of bubble wrap we taped to the floor. This one was especially popular once a few families had left and the kids had more room.

Fine Motor
At this station, older kids could use tongs to sort pom-poms by color and younger kids could use their fingers to put the pom-poms in and out of the colored boxes. Simple, but a huge hit.

We made sensory bags similar to these. This was a great (sneaky) way to use our backlog of random jingle bells, beads, and tiny pom-poms. Kids seemed to love squishing the gel around caregivers had a good time picking through the odds and ends.

The runaway hit of the evening was our discovery pool. I filled it with storytime props like bells, scarves, and shakers & kids had a blast digging through it. I made a sign with questions adults could ask the kids while they played. It was a giant mess to clean up, but so worth it.

Picture Book Book List: Math

Using math in storytime always seemed intimidating to me until I attended a STEAM programming seminar. One of the presenters spoke about in...