Because planning a program doesn't just take 5 minutes

Potty Storytime

I can’t remember anymore where I got the idea for Potty Storytime.  Maybe someone posted about it on Storytime Underground?  Anyway, I put it on my calendar ages ago to have this during the summer.  A lot of families seem to potty train in the summer, either because the kids need to be out of diapers to start preschool in the fall or just because it’s easier with summer clothes.

I wasn’t sure if anyone would show up – it seemed a bit out there – but I had 20 kids and 18 adults, and they were all pretty enthusiastic.  One mom mentioned that she liked it because her son was a bit resistant to using the potty, so it was nice to hear another adult talk about it without any pressure to actually perform.  That made me feel better about avoiding some of the books I had considered where a character expresses reluctance to use the potty but then finally goes.  There were a few changes I might make for next time, but I’d definitely do it again next summer, if not before.

Want to know more?  Read on!


I’ve been having trouble scaring up boys of all ages for our parent-child book clubs lately.  Tonight, I had 6 families signed up, which was amazing (especially for the older boys).  Only 3 showed up, which is sort of my minimum for a decent discussion, but we had a lot of fun.  All of the boys attended as 3rd and 4th graders, and it was fun listening to them (and their parents) reminiscing about favorite past activities.  We had a great discussion and the games went over well.

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Storytime: Birthdays

Who doesn’t love birthdays?  The cake, the presents, the balloons, the shaving cream…  Wait, what?  This was a fun storytime – there are lots of good birthday books and songs – but the craft totally kicked it up a notch.  Homemade puffy paint for the win!  

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approved3Our 3rd and 4th grade parent-child book club read Dying to Meet You by Kate Klise in October.  I was having trouble deciding on an activity, and then at the last minute I decided to have them use a green screen app to put their pictures in front of a haunted house.  Super fun!

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Storytime: Colors

color-mixing1 There are so many good color books it’s hard to choose – we have done whole seasons focused on one color per week.  We started off by talking about favorite colors, and then shared some familiar books and songs, plus one book that was new to everyone.  We finished up with a color mixing activity.

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After having sort of a “meh” storytime last week, it was nice to come in and rock this one.  These were stories and songs that I have used before, with just a few tweaks, so it wasn’t super new (to me), but the kids loved it all anyway, even the stories they already knew.  It’s been hard for me lately to find a good balance of reusing things that I know will be successful while still stretching and growing and trying new things.  This storytime leaned to the old and familiar, but it was super fun.

One thing that was new to me was the craft.  This week we experimented with fabric and felt, and also did some cutting and gluing.  The kids definitely enjoyed the process (and some got into the product as well.)

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Storytime: Houses and Homes

little-mouseWe continued our community themes with Houses and Homes.  This was the first one where a non-traditional craft was an easy activity choice.  We built houses for assorted plastic figurines using a variety of building toys.  Lots of fun!

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