Because planning a program doesn't just take 5 minutes

Letter F


See below for the 2015 Letter F Storytime.

Opening Song: “I Am Here & You Are Here” by Peter & Ellen Allard (on Sing It! Say It! Stamp It! Sway It! Vol. 3)

Mystery Bag objects: frog, fish, fork

Because we’d already talked about the letter, I introduced each story or song by having them guess what F-word it was about.

who-has-these-feetStory: Who Has These Feet? by Laura Hulbert.  This was a fun guessing game, and then also had interesting facts about what made each animal’s foot well adapated to its environment.  I had never read this one in storytime before, but I would definitely do it again.

Song: “Dance Your Fingers Up”.  I don’t remember where I learned this song originally, but I just started using it as a shaker song for Babytime, substituting “shakers” for “fingers,” and it works quite well.  (I think I got that idea from Jbrary.)

that-is-not-a-good-ideaStory: That Is Not a Good Idea by Mo Willems (fox).  The adults really got into this one, which made it work.  Instead of changing the wording each time, I just stuck with, “That is not a good idea!” each time so that it was consistent and they could participate.  I’m not sure the kids totally got it, but it got a good laugh from the adults.  This was my second new book for the week.

croaky-pokeyStory/Song/Dance: The Croaky Pokey by Ethan Long.  I totally forgot my blower, which I usually use the represent the frog’s tongue, but it still worked out great.

old-black-flyStory: Old Black Fly by Jim Aylesworth.  This is another storytime standby for me.  I sing it, and have the kids sing along and wave away the fly on the “Shoo fly, shoo fly, shoo” part.  I got good participation from kids and adults on this chorus, but also on the singing.  To make the book fit the song, I usually repeat the last word or phrase on the first page, even though the book only uses it once.  (“He ate the crust on the apple pie, apple pie, apple pie…”)  Some groups will join in on that part, and some won’t.  This one did.

Closing Song: “See Ya Later”

f-craft-fall-tree  f-craft-feather-painting  f-craft-floating-foil

Craft: I had three separate tables.  We made a fall tree with dot markers, painted with feathers, and floated foil boats.  Lots of fun!


Dance Your Fingers Up
Dance your fingers up
And dance your fingers down.
Dance your fingers to the side
And dance them all around.
Dance them on your shoulders,
Dance them on your head,
Dance them on your tummy
And then put them all to bed.


Opening Song: “I Am Here & You Are Here” by Peter & Ellen Allard (on Sing It! Say It! Stamp It! Sway It! Vol. 3)

Mystery Bag objects: farmer, number 5, fork.  Also in the bag: frog, number 4, fish

Because we’d already talked about the letter, I introduced each story or song by having them guess what F-word it was about.

oink-a-doodle-mooStory: Oink-a-Doodle-Moo by Jef Czekaj (farm).  This was not as much fun to read out loud as I thought it was going to be.  Maybe with an older group.  The kids didn’t really get the “telephone” concept and a lot was left unstated in the pictures.  I added the line “Want to hear a secret?” at the beginning of each page, which helped the flow a little bit.  They definitely still liked hearing the silly sounds, I just don’t think they got the story.

croaky-pokeyStory/Song: The Croaky Pokey by Ethan Long (frogs).  I forgot my blower, which I usually use for the frog’s tongues at the end of each verse, but I substituted a “Slurp!” just fine.  The kids have always loved this book when I use it (as have I) – it’s totally one of my go-to storytime  books.  Earlier in the week another of our storytimers said she tried it once and didn’t use it for her second group because it didn’t work for her.  I think it’s fascinating and awesome how different things work for different people.

pb-and-cupcakeStory: Peanut Butter and Cupcake by Terry Border (friends).  This was maybe a stretch for F, but I love this book.  The illustrations are great, and while the joke seems to get old for adults, the kids think it’s funny every time.  This group had a lot to say about the cover but were having a hard time getting through the first few pages.  Once it got more patterned, they sat in mesmerized silence except for a few shout outs of the appropriate food – “We go together like peanut butter and…”  “Meatball!”

Song:  “The Goldfish Song” by Laurie Berkner on The Best of the Laurie Berkner Band.  I played this on the CD player and we danced around.  Tons of fun!

old-black-flyStory: Old Black Fly by Jim Aylesworth (flies).  This is another favorite of mine.  Often in combination with The Croaky Pokey in a fly-themed storytime, now that I think of it.  As usual, I sang the lyrics.  I had some very attentive grownups singing along with me, and some kids joining in on the parts that repeat.  It was a relaxed, calming finish, even with the poor old fly getting squashed by the birthday cake.

Closing Song: “See Ya Later”

watercolor-treeCraft: Filter papers with liquid water color in fall colors and droppers.  I am on a liquid watercolor roll here!  This was so fun.  The droppers are a great fine motor activity.  I got these enormous filters on discount from Oriental Trading one time.  They have lasted years and are so neat to work with.  One dropper full of each of the four colors was enough to make a really vibrant fall picture.  Not everyone made a tree – some just experimented with color dropping, which also came out really nicely.



Possible subthemes:  fall, friends, farm, family, food, frogs, flies, feelings, fox, fish, fire fighters

Other possible titles:

Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert (fall)

Fall Leaves Fall! by Zoe Hall  (fall)

Fletcher and the Falling Leaves by Julia Rawlinson (fall)

Mouse’s First Fall by Lauren Thompson  (fall)

One Family by George Shannon  (family)

The Little Rabbit Who Liked to Say Moo by Jonathan Allen (farm)

Cock-a-doodle-doo, Creak, Pop-pop, Moo by Jim Aylesworth (farm)

Farmyard Beat by Lindsey Craig (farm)

My Blue is Happy by Jessica Young  (feelings)

Dancing Feet! by Lindsey Craig (feet)

Tiny Little Fly by Michael Rosen (flies)

Oh No! A Fox!  by Janet Morgan Stoeke  (fox)

The Best Friends Book by Todd Parr  (friends)

Momo and Snap are NOT Friends! by Airlie Anderson (friends)

I’m a Frog! by Mo Willems  (frogs)


Other possible crafts:

Fall sensory bags
Dot markers to make fall leaves


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