Category: Imagination

One Mitten


Kristine O’Connell George’s One Mitten has been sitting in my TBM pile for about two years now! I had a vision in my head that required prep work and never had enough time to do it. Recently I acquired funding for a die cut machine and the stars aligned!

I wanted to do this story as an interactive story, so I wanted each child to have one, yellow mitten. I bought a yard of felt, made a template, and sewed as many pairs as possible. (OK, you know me by now…my husband did all the sewing!) In the middle of the story, the narrator finds its pair hiding under the kitty cat. When I setup for storytime, I hid one yellow mitten under each carpet square.


When the child found the match in the book, I asked each child to look under their mat to see if they found anything.  It was a huge hit! We kept our mittens on throughout the rest of the program and danced, wiggled, and listened. I collected them before craft time and prepped yellow lacing mittens with my new die cut!

For more storytime ideas, check out Cate’s Storytiming. She’s hosting this week’s Flannel Friday. To find out more about Flannel Friday, check out the website, the Pinterest board, and the Facebook Group.

Preschool Dance Party

Parachute Play

After being inspired by a list of bloggers (Jbrary, Catch the Possibilities, Biblipbop, The Show Me Librarian, and Fat Girl Reading to name a few), I decided to have my first Preschool Dance Party! This was my chance to do some different things than the normal storytime stuff. I used songs I don’t get a chance to, too! It was so much fun and required less setup time than traditional programs. Families had a great time and everyone was going home to take a nap after! Of course, I didn’t get any pictures because I was too busy. Maybe next time.

I also had the opportunity to play with Power Point and learn something new. I created three self-playing presentations (with the help of my Windows-expert husband) that have the songs embedded. I was able to dance around the room and not worry about changing the slides. I added those files in my playlist below. I will be adding this type of program into my specials repertoire!

Preschool Dance Party Playlist (36 minutes)

Warm Up Song

“Hello, Today Yoga Salutation of the Sun” by Lisa Loeb. Songs for Movin’ & Shakin’.

Movement Songs

“Oh, When” by Wee Sing. Wee Sing and Pretend.

“Peanut Butter and Jelly” by Greg & Steve. Fun and Games.

Songs with Power Points/Projector

“If You’re Wearing Colors” by The Learning Station. Get Funky and Musical Fun: If You’re Wearing Colors

“The Toy Shop at Midnight” by Wee Sing. Wee Sing and Pretend: Toy Shop at Midnight

“If Animals Can Dance” by The Learning Station. La Di Da, La Di Di: If Animals Could Dance.pptx

Musical Instrument Songs

“This Old Man is Rockin’ On” by Don Monopoli. Laugh ‘n Learn Silly Songs.

“Take a Little Nap (The Disco Song)” by Ralph Covert. Ralph’s World.

Slowing Down Songs

“Now Freeze” by Amy Rogell. Balloons.

“The Land of Slow Motion” by Wee Sing. Wee Sing and Pretend.

Circle Song

“Hokey Pokey” by Mother Goose Rocks. Mother Goose Rocks v.3.

Parachute Songs

“Popcorn” by Greg & Steve. We All Live Together v.2.

“Popcorn” by the Barenaked Ladies. Snack Time.

Clean Up /Goodbye Song

“Goodbye Children” by Kathy Reid-Naiman. Tickles and Tunes.

For more storytime ideas, check out Lisa’s Libraryland. She’s hosting Flannel Friday this week!

Batman or Penguin

Batman or Penguin

I recently wrote a post about Simon C. Page’s Spider-Man or Green Goblin, and am excited that he has another superhero optical illusion. I wrote a story to tell the children and look forward to them yelling, “No Batman!”

Penguin or Batman

Hey look, it’s the Penguin!
It’s not the Penguin, it’s Batman!

No, I heard him say, “My friends call me Oswald.”
No, he whispered that his friend know him as Bruce Wayne.

I see an umbrella hiding under his coat. It must be Penguin.
That’s Batman’s utility belt!

I hear music, it must be coming from the Iceberg Lounge. It’s Penguin!
No, I hear electronics working hard in Wayne Manor. It’s Batman!

Look, I see a tuxedo, top hat, monocle and white gloves. It’s Penguin!
No, I see a black cape. It’s Batman!

I see his entourage of henchmen. It’s got to be the Penguin.
No, it’s his trusty side-kick, Robin. It’s definitely Batman!

Oh no, he’s getting away in the limo. It’s Penguin.
No, that’s the Batmobile. It’s Batman!

Uh, oh. Where’d he go?

He must have gone to his hiding place in the sewers. It was the Penguin!
No, he must have gone to the secret Batcave. It was Batman!

Coloring page: Batman or Penguin

Stay tuned for Olly Moss’ Wolverine or 2 Batman

For more storytime ideas check out Lisa’s Libraryland. She’s hosting the weekly storytime blog hop Flannel Friday this week.

Spider-Man or Green Goblin

Spider-Man or Green Goblin

Spiderman or Green Goblin

Since superheroes are a perennial favorite in storytime, I was so excited when I came across Simon C. Page’s amazing optical illusion! The kids love these kind of stories! I was originally inspired by Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Duck! Rabbit! and since then have been writing my own (including Anteater Brachiosaurus, Squirrel Swan, and Wolverine or 2 Batman). I came up with a story for this illusion and a take-home coloring page:

Green Goblin or Spiderman (Begin holding the image upside down and leave it that way throughout the story.)

Goblin or Spiderman

Hey look, it’s the Green Goblin!

No, it’s Spiderman hanging from a building!

Listen, he said his real name is Harry Osborn.
No, I heard him whisper that his real name is Peter Parker!

See that in the corner? That’s Green Goblin’s Glider!
No, I see Spiderman’s web shooters on the table.

Oh, look! I think those are Goblin’s Pumpkin Bombs moving in the corner.
No, that’s just Spidey’s sense going off!

See that, it’s an Oscorp ID. It’s definitely the Green Goblin!
No, that’s a photographer’s ID for the Daily Bugle. It’s Spiderman!

There’s a picture of Liz Allen over there. Everyone knows that’s Green Goblin’s girlfriend.
No, that’s Mary Jane, or M.J. as Spidey likes to call her!

Uh, oh. Where’d he go? (Hide paper behind back)

He must have went to a Gathering of the Five Meeting. It was Green Goblin!
No, he must have met the Avengers. It was Spiderman!

Coloring Page: Spiderman or Green Goblin

Stay tuned for Batman or Penguin…

For more ideas to use in storytime check out Kathryn’s blog over at Fun with Friends at Storytime. She’s hosting the weekly storytime blog hop, Flannel Friday, this week!

Wolverine or 2 Batman

Wolverine or 2 Batman

Olly Moss’ superhero optical illusion of Wolverine or 2 Batman is perfect to share with children as they argue about what they see! I made up a story to go with this illusion. The kids love these stories! I was originally inspired by Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Duck! Rabbit! and since then have been writing my own (including Anteater Brachiosaurus and Squirrel Swan). I came up with a story for this illusion and a take-home coloring page:

Wolverine or 2 Batman

Hey look, it’s Batman looking into a mirror.

No, it’s Wolverine looking right at us!

No, listen. He just introduced himself as “Bruce.”

No, I heard him say, “I go by Logan.”

I just say him put on his utility belt. It’s got to be Batman!

No, I heard a snikt! That’s the noise that Wolverine’s claws
make when they come out!

Listen…I just heard the Batmobile start up.

No, that’s a motorcycle that Wolverine likes to ride.

Oh look, it’s Batman’s girlfriend, Catwoman. (Selina Kyle)

No, that’s Jean Grey. Everyone knows that Wolverine is in love with her!

Oh, I think I just saw Robin fly by. You know that’s Batman’s sidekick.

No, that was Jubilee that just did a cartwheel really fast by us.

Listen. Did you hear him say, “I am Batman.”

No, I heard Wolverine say, “I’m the best there is at what I do.”

Oh, no. You scared him. Where did he go?

Batman must have hidden in the Batcave.

No, Wolverine went back to Xavier’s Institute of Higher Learning.

Here’s a coloring page: Wolverine or 2 Batman

Count the Monkeys

Count the Monkeys

Count the Monkeys BookI love this new “counting” book. The children loves listening to it and immediately yell, “Again!” when I turn to the final end pages revealing all of the hidden monkeys. I don’t see how I can make this into a successful flannel story, but I did make a cool craft! Just copy this (Count the Monkeys Craft) double sided and watch the fun. Score the four windows and handout for an interactive coloring page.

Count the Monkeys Craft Photo

For more ideas, check out Storytimes and More on the Go’s Saturday Share.

Tweak Tweak

Tweak Tweak

Tweak Tweak

A newer picture book by Eve Bunting is a sweet tale about an elephant asking his mother questions about how he is different from other animals. Every time Elephant has a question, he tweaks Mama’s tail twice. I have the kids act it out with me each time and they love it!


Elephant asking if he can sing like Songbird.

Elephant Frog

Elephant asking if he can jump like Frog.

Elephant Butterfly

Elephant asking if he can fly like Butterfly.

Elephant Alligator

Elephant asking if he can swim like Crocodile.

Elephant Monkey

Elephant asking if he can climb like Monkey.

You can use this with puppets as well:

Here are two different craft ideas to use with this story. You can download the pdf files here: Tweak Tweak craft

Tweak craft2

Punch a hole for Elephants nose and push a noisemaker through it to make Elephant’s trunk.

Tweak Tweak Craft

Punch a hole for Elephant’s tail and tape a piece of yarn for Elephant’s tail.

For more flannel ideas check out Check the Possibilities. She’s hosting Flannel Friday this week.

The Day the Crayons Quit

The Day the Crayons Quit

Crayon book and tin

My new favorite picture book is now a flannel story! I wanted to use this book with my outreach programs, but some of my groups are pretty big. So, while I was back-to-school shopping for glue sticks and crayons I found this Crayola tin. Perfect! Here’s how you can have a matching story:

Take the butcher paper that you use to cover your craft tables with and cut them into big pieces (white construction paper will work, too). You’ll need a total of 12, plus one extra big one for the finale. Fold them to fit into the tin. Cut out coordinating felt pieces to go with each color. With my big groups, I’m going to just use the tin with Duncan’s letters to read the story. You can pass out the felt pieces to get the children to match the colors at the right time throughout the story.

red crayon

1) Red Crayon

purple crayon

2) Purple crayon

beige crayon

3) Beige crayon

gray crayon

4) Gray crayon

white crayon

5) White crayon (I used black construction paper and white chalk. Then I sprayed the paper with fixative so it won’t smudge.)

black crayon

6) Black crayon

green crayon

7) Green crayon

yellow crayon

8) Yellow crayon

orange crayon

9) Orange crayon

blue crayon

10) Blue crayon

pink crayon

11) Pink crayon

12) Peach crayon (I haven’t made a prop to go with this yet. I was thinking of making a giant crayon and removable wrapper to give him “clothes” at the end of the story. Until then, I think I’ll skip this color because as of right now there’s no closure for this color.)

Day Crayons Quit

The big finale where all the colors live happily ever after! This sheet is about two feet by two feet and makes quite an impact when unfolded!

For more flannel ideas check out Notes From the Story Room. She’s hosting this week’s Flannel Friday.

Squirrel! Swan!

Squirrel! Swan!

For the 2013 summer reading program, I wrote a sequel to Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Duck! Rabbit! called Anteater! Brachiosaurus! It was a big hit, so I decided to write one for the fall titled Squirrel! Swan! Here it is:

Squirrel! Swan!

Squirrel Swan

Hey look, it’s a squirrel!
It’s not a squirrel, it’s a swan.

Acorn water

Look. It’s eating an acorn. It’s a squirrel.
No, it’s drinking water. It’s a swan.

(Shake lap flannel board)

Look, it’s twitching. It’s definitely a squirrel.
No, it’s preening its feathers. It’s definitely a swan.

Soil and pondweed

Look. It’s hiding its acorn in the soil. It’s a squirrel.
No, it’s having a pondweed snack. It’s a swan.


Look. Its nest is in the hollowed tree. It’s a squirrel.
No, its nest is in the reeds. It’s a swan.


Oh, it’s climbing in the oak tree. It’s definitely a squirrel.
No, it’s shading itself under the weeping willow. It’s definitely a swan.

Owl fox

Uh, oh! Here comes an owl. It’s coming for the squirrel.
No, it’s a fox. It’s coming for the swan.

Oh, great. It was scared off.

What are we going to do now?

I don’t know what do you want to do now?

Seal polar bear

Oh, look, it’s a seal.

That’s not a seal, it’s a polar bear!

The End.

Stay tuned for my winter story titled Seal! Polar Bear!

For more flannel ideas check out Reading with Red. She’s hosting Flannel Friday this week!

Good Night Gorilla

Good Night Gorilla

Good Night Characters

I finally figured out a way to turn Good Night Gorilla into an interactive flannel board story. First, I made each animal that appears in the picture book. I also included the zookeeper, his wife, and their bed. Then, I cut out six different colored cages to go over each animal.

Good Night Cages

To make this story intereactive for toddlers, I made keys to coordinate with each cage.

Good Night Gorilla and Keys

I put the keys on a two-inch book ring and tell the children that this is the zookeeper’s key ring. Before I tell the story I pass out a different colored key to each child and tell them that the gorilla told me to.

Zoo keeper and keys

I introduce each animal one at a time and ask the children if they have the correct colored key to let the animal out of their cage. At the end of the story I place them all in the zookeeper’s bed and we say good night and blow them kisses.

Good Night Bed

Good Night Everyone

For more flannel ideas, check out Roving Fiddlehead’s blog. Or check out Flannel Friday.

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