Engaging programs to keep kids coming back to the library
I use puppets in a variety of ways in storytime. One way to use a mix of finger puppets (for the children) and hand puppets (for you) is to sing a song. If I want to begin storytime with a puppet song, I’ll hand out the finger puppets as the children enter the storytime room. If I’m using stick puppets, I sometimes place a pair in a baggie and hide them under the children’s mats that they sit on. When I’m ready, I ask them to find a surprise to use. Or if the wiggles have taken over the room, I just pass them out while everyone waits for a turn. I like using vinyl puppets because I can wash them easily. They are costly, though, and I try to incorporate the cost into grants or special funding. If you’re just starting, you can create your own finger puppets using this easy technique from Mel’s Desk.
Here are a few videos you can watch to see different ways of using puppets with music. If you scroll down to the bottom of this post, you’ll find more songs with a list of puppets you’ll need to spice up your program!
Susan Salidor’s extended version of Two Little Blackbirds teaches opposites. You can use any puppets you have for this song (I usually incorporate the summer reading theme and use this song as the welcome song all summer):
I like to use Carole Peterson’s There’s a Dog in School with early preschoolers. It helps teach them the alphabet. I’ve included lyrics and a set of make-your-own finger puppets here: There’s a Dog in School:
A high energy song is Laurie Berkner’s Pig On Her Head (Alternate version). I created a handout with lyrics and finger puppets here: Pig on Her Head Alt Version:
For more puppet song ideas, try these:
Little Groove’s Puppet on Your Finger (you can use any finger puppet you have!):
The original Laurie Berkner song, Pig on Her Head, (pig, cow, sheep, alligator, elephant and skunk):
Mother Goose Rocks’ take on Old MacDonald set to a Taylor Swift song (cow, pig, horse, duck):
Kimmy Schwimmy’s Mr. Owl (owl, bird, kitty):
Raffi’s Little White Duck classic (duck, frog, bug, snake):
Little Groove’s I Love My Pets (dog, cat, fish):
Carole Peterson’s Say Good Day (cows, pigs, dogs, chickens, kids):
What’s your favorite puppet song to use in storytime?