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Here Kitty, Kitty – Toddler Move ‘N’ Read Storytime!

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Today we celebrated those wonderfully furry creatures, cats. Our opening song was “If You’re Happy and You Know It” from 40 English Songs for Kids.


Mr. Tom Cat was really excited about today’s Storytime


He and his friend Tabby couldn’t wait…


to clap and jump…


and show how happy they were!

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin was our first tale. In this story, everyone’s favorite cat Pete. went out for a walk one day wearing his new white shoes. However, in the course of his travels his shoes changed from white to red to blue to brown to…wet. Pete didn’t let it bother him though; he just kept on traveling and singing his song. I printed out and laminated a picture of Pete the Cat and one set each of his red, blue, brown and wet shoes and paired them with this book. Before starting the story I placed the picture of Pete on a white board. As we read through the book, the children were able to guess the next color of Pete’s shoes and go to the board and place the correct pair on Pete.


Pete started out with white shoes.


But when he stepped in strawberries his shoes turned what color? Red!


Next, Pete trampled through blueberries. What happened to his shoes? They turned blue!


After Pete accidently walked through mud, what color did his shoes become? Brown!


When Pete splashed in a tub of water, all the red, blue and brown washed away. What color were Pete’s shoes in the beginning? White, but now they were also wet!

We all know that cats love to chase mice, and to escape the mice have to hide from the cats. Well, today, with our mouse puppet Miss Matilda for help, we tried to find her friend, Mouse. Prior to Storytime I printed out, and laminated, images of several different colored hats, and one mouse. Before beginning the activity, out of sight of everyone, I hid the mouse under one of the hats. Then, one by one, Miss Matilda would invite a child to come up and remove one of the hats, to see if our mouse was under there. If we didn’t find the mouse, we kept going, if we did, I re-hid the mouse and we began again.We played this game several times, to the delight of the children. As we played our game, we listened to “I Taut I Taw a Puddy Tat,” Tweety the canarie’s theme about escaping Sylvester the cat, from the CD The Best of Children’s Songs.


Miss Matilda was ready to help us find what hat her friend was hiding under.


So many to choose from.


Is she under the pink one? No, not under there.


How about the magician’s hat? No, not under that one either.


Let’s try the construction worker’s hat…


We found Miss Matilda’s friend!

How Many Cats? by Lauren Thompson was our next book. This counting, rhyming tale, showed us what happened when 20 cats came over to a house to play. First, we counted cats from zero to twenty. These fun loving felines were frolicking in the kitchen, racing on the stairs and climbing all about the bookshelves. As the day came to a close, the cats left in pairs of two or three, and we counted down from twenty to zero. The children liked counting the cats with me as we read through the book.

Splat the Cat: Fishy Tales by Annie Auerbach was our next book. Splat, and his class, were on a field trip to the Aquarium. As Splat and his friends viewed each of the exhibits, Splat offered his own explanations for everything. For example, jellyfish were really made out of strawberry jelly. Spike, one of Splat’s classmates, kept telling him all his explanations were wrong, but Splat’s friend Kitten was very entertained by his antics. At the very end of the trip, Splat slipped on some water and went SPLAT! right into a catfish tank. With Kitten’s help though, he got out of the tank and dried off.

For our last activity, I brought out the bubble machine. With Mr. Tom Cat’s friend Tabby for company, the children laughed, giggled and danced through the bubbles. We listened to several songs from the CD Disney’s The Aristocats.

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As the song went, everyone wanted to be a cat today!

Nini Here and There by Anita Lobel was our last story. Nini knew something was going on when she saw boxes, clothes and suticases everywhere. Nini’s owners were moving, and Nini was afraid they were going away without her. After Nini was loaded into her cat carrier she fell asleep, and we got to join her on some fantastic dreams. We flew with Nini in hot air balloons, sailed on boats and even rode an elephant. Eventually, Nini, and her owners, reached their new home. Nini was able to explore her new world and as she said, things may have been new and different, but at least her owners did not go away without her.

Music was a part of both of our activities today, and this article from The Creativity Institute discusses how beneficial music is to childhood development. The article talks about what music and rhythm are, and how they benefit children. Music can teach children new words, expose them to new ideas, and help them learn about motion. The article is divided up by age groups and provides wonderful tips and tricks for how to introduce music and rhythm to your children.

Another of, Mr. Tom Cat’s friends, Patches, joined us in frolicking in the bubbles as we shook and jumped our sillies out along with Raffi, from his CD More Singable Songs


A lively, fluffy Storytime was  had by all!

Building will be our theme next week!

-Miss Jessica

My Colors Sensory Storytime

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Sensory Storytimes @ Main is a monthly program designed for children on the autism spectrum or those who are sensitive to sensory overload. This month we explored colors with the following songs, stories and activities.

Opening Song: Names, Names. We start with a chant:

Names, names, we all have names

You say yours, we’ll say the same.

After the chant the next child calls out their name and claps or slaps their knee on each syllable. Then everyone in the group claps and repeats the child’s name four times.  Clapping along to rhythms helps children hear the syllables in words and improves their motor skills.

Flannel Story: Dog’s Colorful Day: A Messy Story About Colors and Counting by Emma Dodd. dog

This classic was very popular. As each child added their color to Dog they got to enjoy the texture and feel of the flannel pieces. Dog starts off the day with one black spot on his ear. But it seems that wherever he goes, he runs, rolls, and trots right into colors. As he wanders around town, Dog collects spots made of red jam, blue paint, pink ice cream, and more. When he finally arrives back home, Dog has ten different colored spots. And then it’s bath time which washes him clean and back to his one black spot on his ear.

Movement Activity: Green Says Go!


Green say, “GO!” (marching quickly around the room)

Go! Go! Go!

Yellow says, “Slow!” (marching more slowly around the room)

Slow, Slow, Slow

Red says stop! (Stop and freeze)


Book: The Girl Who Heard Colors by Marie Harris 

This picture book introduces readers to their five senses and to something called synesthesia, in which one sense triggers another. In this story when Jillian hears a sound she sees a color. Imagine that when you hear a bell you see silver or when a dog barks you see red. For some people, sounds or tastes have colors. And for others, numbers and letters do. Many famous artists have been synesthete.

Action Song: Put a Little Color On You from Hap Palmer’s Can a Cherry Pie Wave Goodbye? 

This is an action song in which each child was given 2 craft stick’s with a strip of red, green, yellow, and blue tape on an end.sticks

They listen and follow the directions in the verses and place the color on the various parts of their body. You could also use colored scarves, ribbons or yarn. This helps children recognize and identify colors as well as body parts. It’s also fun!


DVD: Very Hungry Caterpillar caterpillar

We watched the progress of a hungry caterpillar as he eats his way through a very large quantity of food until, full at last, he forms a cocoon around himself and goes to sleep, only to emerge as a beautiful butterfly.     butterfly

For the remainder of the program the children were encouraged to visit the three sensory stations.

Station 1: Caterpillar Necklaces: We recreated our own Very Hungry Caterpillar necklaces made out of paper cutouts, straws and yarn.


Station 2: Color Sensory Bags.  Our sensory bins were made up of shredded red, green and yellow paper and small bits of colored yarn but we have seen some using colored rice or pasta. Then small everyday objects of each color were hidden in the bins. Finding the items and their matching image on the sheet helps children practice focused concentration with the sensory fun of running our hands through the paper and yarn.


Station 3: Scott Howard, local author brought his wonderful coloring book “Artsy Ant Alphabet” for the children to enjoy.


Our musical soundtrack during our sensory stations included: Rainbow and Blue Balloon from I’m Me by Charlie Hope, Colors from Dance For the Sun by Kira Willey, Little Red Caboose from Buzz Buzz by Laurie Berkner, Underneath the Rainbow from Kings and Queens of the Forest by Kira Wiley, Mary Wore Her Red Dress from Every Thing Grows by Raffi, All the Colors of the Rainbow from Sat Nam! by Snatam Kaur Khasla

Sensory Storytime@ Main meet the last Sunday of each month at the Main library and look forward to seeing you in October on the 25th at 2 p.m.

Ms. Mercedes

Fall is Here! – Toddler Move ‘N’ Read Storytime

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The seasons are changing, the leaves are turning from green to red, yellow and orange. Fall is returning and we celebrated during Storytime today. Our opening song was “If You’re Happy and You Know It” from 40 English Songs for Kids.

Fall1 Happy1


Mr. Tom Cat and Squirrel, surrounded by all the colors of fall, joined us in clapping, jumping and shouting to show how happy we all were for the First Day of Fall!

It’s Fall by Jimmy Pickering was our first book. Sally and her dog Sam were venturing out to discover the wonders of Fall in this rhyming tale. They sampled pumpkin pie, jumped in piles of raked leaves, collected apples and much more. When Sally and Sam went to the County Fair to visit the petting zoo, Sally fed the chickens and Sam almost had his tail eaten by a sheep! At the end of a fun filled day, Sally and Sam settled down to bed with warm apple cider.

Our first activity was all about apples and science. Prior to Storytime I cored out eight apples in different fall colors. Then, inside each one, I put food coloring and baking soda. During the activity I handed out small squeeze bottles of vinegar to the children. When they squeezed the vinegar on top of the apples, there were riotous, colorful explosions. This was due to the fact that baking soda is a base. When a base comes into contact with an acid, such as vinegar, there is a reaction. In this case bubbling and frothing out of the pre-cut core of the apple. The children had a lot of fun with this, wanting to make the apples explode again and again. As we made our apples explode in rainbow colors, we listened to “The Apple Tree” and “When It’s Autumn” from Carole Stephens CD H.U.M: All Year Long Highly Usable Music Here is a link to the experiment.


Mr. Tom Cat loves apples, so he was very interested in what we were doing.


We began with cored out apples, filled with food coloring and baking soda

Apples8 Apples7 Apples3 Apples2 Apples1

Each apple was a different color, and the children really enjoyed watching the colors reveal themselves when the vinegar was added.

Let It Fall by Maryann Cocca-Leffler was our next book. This rhyming tale showcased all the wonderful aspects of the season. From jumpin in leaf piles, to visiting the county fair, to hiking out in the woods, this beautiful book highlighted all the wonderful things to see and do during fall. As we neared the end of the story, animals were beginning to hibernate and the leaves were faling off the trees. A chill nip was felt in the air, no doubt about it, winter was coming.

Fall Mixed Up by Bob Raczka was our next book. This hilarious, not quite right story, told in rhyme, showed us a fall season that was a little different than what we were used to. For instance, the big grizzly bears were climbing trees to gather nuts, while the geese were hibernating in dens. We saw squirrels flying with the aid of balloons, and children eating caramel pumpkins instead of caramel apples. Each page showed us a mixed up fall scene, and challenged us to identify the things that were wrong. The children found this book weird and enjoyable.

Music played a role in our last activity. I put on the CD  Sesame Street: Hot! Hot! Hot! Dance Songs, and played the song “Silly Squirrel Dance.” Everyone grabbed an egg shaker and we all danced along to the song, shaking our eggs and jumping about the room. Several of our puppets, including Squirrel, Chipmunk and Raccoon joined us.


Squirrel showed us all how to do the Silly Squirrel Dance


Everyone shook their egg shakers…


and danced to the music.

I Know It’s Autumn by Eileen Spinelli was our last book. This story showed us all the ways that we know the season of autumn has arrived. When mom made pumpkin muffins for breakfast, and all the coats come out of the closet. When the farmers bring apples to the market, and class crafts are made out of acorns, we know autumn had arrived. The story ended with everyone enjoying a storytelling session outside by the bonfire.

After our final story, Mr. Tom Cat and his friend Chipmunk joined us in clapping, jumping and shaking our sillies out, along with Raffi from his CD More Singable Songs.


Sillies1 Happy3

Mr. Tom Cat and Chipmunk joined us in shaking our sillies out!

Today was an imaginative and fun experience for all. Happy First Day of Fall!

Cats will be our theme next week!

-Miss Jessica

It’s a Colorful World – Toddler Move ‘N’ Read Storytime

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Today we had lots of fun with color. Our opening song was “If You’re Happy and You Know It” from 40 English Songs for Kids.

Happy2 Happy4 Happy1

Mr. Tom Cat was surrounded by colorful pictures today. He joined us in clapping and jumping because he was happy too!

Red is a Dragon: A Book of Colors by Roseanne Thong was our first book. This was the delightful story of a little girl who discovered a rainbow of colors in her everyday life. Ten different colors were explored in this book in the form of red dragons, orange seashells, yellow candles and much more. This book showed us life through the eyes of someone from another cultures through color.

Science played a roll in our first activity. Before beginning, I set out a tablecloth, plastic tray, bottle of milk, tubes of food coloring, q-tips, and a small bowl filled with dish soap. I also put on the CD Junior Jukebox Colorful Shapes so we could listen to different songs about colors as we did our experiment. First, I poured the milk onto the tray, then, after holding up the tubes one by one and asking the children to tell me what color they were, I added the food coloring to the milk. Four colors were added, blue, green, red and yellow. Next, after finding a volunteer, we took our q-tips and dipped them in the soap. Then, the child put the q-tip into the milk mixture and watched the magical reaction. The colors shot all over the tray! After that, everyone wanted to try it, and soon many of the children were making colors shoot across the surface of the milk. The science involved is all about molecules. The chemicals in the dish soap, that are so good at removing greasy food from our dishes, break down the fat molecules in the milk. You can see that reaction by adding the color. As the milk molecules break down, they scatter, and that scatters the color. A link to this experiment can be found here.

MIlkDemo1 MilkDemo2 MilkDemo3 MilkDemo4


Look at the amazing, exploding colors! In the end, the children wanted to mix them all up to see how brown it could get.

The milk really looked like mud in the last picture!

Wow! Said the Owl by Tim Hopgood was our next story. This is the story of a little owl who, instead of sleeping during the day, decided to stay awake and see what the world looked like in all its beautiful colors. This is a favorite of mine, and such fun to read. The owl was very enthusiastic when it saw, for the first time, the myriad of colors that made up the world. A blue sky, red butterflies and orange flowers are just some of the wondrous things the owl experienced.

Colors for Zena by Monica Wellington was our next book. Zena loved color, and as she went about her day, she saw a host of things throughout her city that were in all her favorite colors. For yellow, Zena saw busses, taxis and some of her favorite shops. As she was walking, she crossed over a bridge, with the bright blue sky overhead and the clear blue river below. When she saw things in green, like a frog, and vines growing on a house, she learned that the colors blue and yellow made up green. Red came in the form of fire trucks and flowers. At the end of her day Zena painted a bright, colorful picture that showed all the beautiful things she had seen that day.

This last story talked about mixing colors, and this idea fueled our next activity. I brought out water colors, paint brushes and white paper. I also put on the song “Colors All Around” from Jack Hartmann’s CD of the same name. Then, using only two colors at a time, I let the children come up and see what happened when those colors were mixed together. We tried the traditional combination, like yellow and blue and red and purple, but we also created unusual mixtures. Did you ever wonder what color you end up with when you mix turquoise and purple? We found out today, it creates a cinnamon brown looking color. Children were able to incorporate the ideas of color association with music and fun movement. This article from Provider Parent Partnership discussed why teaching children about color is not only an essential skill, but also helps them express their creativity.

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Everyone got to experiment with their inner artist today. We got to see what happened when you mixed a variety of watercolor paints together.

I Spy With My Little Eye by Edward Gibbs was our last book. Gibbs has a series of “I Spy” books, each dealing with different animals. The books are constructed in a unique way, with a die cut hole in the middle that only reveals a small portion of the illustration behind it. That small glimpse, coupled with a factual clue in simple text, is all the children and I had to work with to try to identify each animal. In the case of this book, the clue revolved around color. For example, one clue was “I spy something blue, I am the biggest animal in the world.” The answer was a blue whale. The children really enjoyed trying to guess what animal would be revealed next.

To end our fun filled Storytime, we shook our sillies out with Raffi from his CD More Singable Songs. Mr. Hippo and Mr. Tom Cat joined in our fun.

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Mr. Tom Cat, and Mr. Hippo shook their sillies out with us today.

We had an amazing Storytime today.

The First Day of Fall will be our theme next week!

-Miss Jessica


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Let’s hear it for Grandparents!


They are such an important part of our families and fill so many roles: caregiver, playmate,  teacher, and keeper of the family stories. Sometimes the most important place they fill is that of listener. As the t-shirt says, “When the going get’s tough, I go to Gramdma’s”.

We love the fact that we see so many grandparents at our library programs. Sharing books and music with your grandchildren is a wonderful experience and we are privileged to be a small part of that fun. Today at Let’s Grow Baby Oh! we sang a special grandparent song.

What Will It Be (sung to a waltz tune)

Oom pa-pa, oom pa-pa, Grandma and me

Oom pa-pa, omm pa-pa, what will it be?

Will we bake cookies

Or will we climb trees?

Grandmother, what will it be?

Oom pa-pa, Oom pa-pa, Grandpa and me

Oom pa-pa, oom pa-pa, what will be it?

Will we go fishing

Or will we plant seeds?

Grandfather, what will it be?

Looking for ideas for fun activities to share with your grandchild? Check out “Play With Me! Activities That Make Learning Fun For Birth to 12 Months.”

Ms. Mercedes