Latest Event Updates

Sister Hare Debuts in next Showtime with the Dascaloja Puppeteers

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Here are some promo shots for our upcoming Show on 10 July.
They were taken whilst we rehearsed for “Sister Hare”.

During the 10 July show, we’ll be performing
our adaptation of “Sister Hare” for the first time.

The original story was taken from the book

Animalia: Thirteen Small Tales by Barbara Berger.
Our version was adapted by Jessica Pollock, David J. Lane & Jenn Milano.

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We will Also be performing:

Rafunzel
Bellete to the Rescue
Hippo Goes Bananas

& the musical numbers:

Cheap Sunglasses
Disco Duck

See you there!

-Mr. David

Dascaloja Puppeteers present The Fearsome Four vs. The Giant Paperboy from Outer Space

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fearsome

Just in case you missed our performance on
26 June 2015,
I am posting an excerpt of the show.
It is the first story we presented that day.
Well done Dascaloja Puppeteers!
I am very proud to work with this summer’s lineup
of teen puppeteers.

-Mr. David

CLICK HERE FOR THE VIDEO

Robot Shuffle

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Our summer SPARK Parks Camp had fun this morning programming their LEGO Mindstorm’s EV3 robots to participate in the Robot Shuffle dance. Check it out!

Happy Fourth of July! – Toddler Move ‘N’ Read Storytime

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Today in Storytime we celebrated our countries birthday, the Fourth of July. Our opening song was “If You’re Happy and You Know It” from 40 English Songs for Kids.

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If you’re happy…

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and you know it…

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wave you’re flag!

Hats Off for the Fourth of July by Harriet Ziefert was our first book. Ziefert’s rhyming tale was set at a Fourth of July parade. As we read through the story, we saw marching bands, cowboys on horseback, floats in the shapes of boats and animals and so much more. For the parade’s finale, a skywriting plane flew overhead, and spelled out the words Happy 4th of July.

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See the cowboys on their horses march in the parade.

Mr. Tom Cat played a central role in our first activity. Prior to beginning, I not only handed out images to all the children, but also put up three words on the board ‘Red,’ ‘White’ and ‘Blue.’ Each child got two images in one of three colors, red, white and blue. Some of the pictures were of things like polar bears, firetrucks and Cookie Monster. After everyone had their pictures, Mr. Tom Cat appeared and asked us all to tell him what three colors were in the flag. Once we did, he would call out things, and the child with that image would come up and place it under the proper color heading. Each child was so excited when Mr. Tom Cat called out the picture they had.

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Can everyone tell me what three colors the flag is? Red, white and blue, that’s right!

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What color is Cookie Monster?

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Is the polar bear white or blue?

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The apples go with the other red things.

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Blueberries are yummy, they fit in with the other blue items.

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What about milk, Mr. Tom Cat’s favorite drink, what color is that?

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Where do the ladybugs go, with the red things or the white ones?

I turned our next book into an interactive activity. You’re a Grand Old Flag by George M. Cohan became a book we sang along, and waved our scarves along to. Utilizing the song of the same name from the CD Musical Scarves and Activities, I turned pages in the book, and we all sang along with the song and waved our scarves like flags. Even Mr. Hippo got in on the fun with a scarf of its own.

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You’re a grand old flag…

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You’re a high flyin’ flag!

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Wave your flag proudly Mr. Hippo.

On the Day the Tall Ships Sailed by Betty Paraskevas was our next book, and one of my favorite books to read for the Fourth of July theme. This rhyming tale, beautifully illustrated by Michael Paraskevas, was about the annual celebration in New York city, of the tall sailing ships cruising up the river to New York harbor. As we read through the story, we discovered that a bald eagle, our national bird, was journeying up the river as well, right along with the ships. The final page was a sunset, with all the tall ships, and the great eagle, in silhouette as the nation’s birthday came to an end.

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Here come the tall ships.

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And there, up in the sky, flying over the ships, is the eagle.

For our last activity I put on the CD Songs of America  and, as we listened to several patriotic tunes, everyone got to play in the bubbles. The children love any opportunity to run and frollick in the bubbles, jumping about and trying to catch as many as they can.

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Every holiday is more fun with bubbles!

Meet Our Flag, Old Glory by April Jones Prince was our last book. This rhyming story showed us lots of ways the American flag is used, and honored. We put our hands over our hearts and face it when we say the pledge of allegiance, flags wave over baseball games and we even planted a flag on the moon to show we were the first country to set foot there. The book has some wonderfully educational end material about the American flags history.

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This is Old Glory, our flag.

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She can be found lots of places, even on the moon!

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On Fourth of July she waves with the fireworks behind her.

Fourth of July can be a fun day for the whole family, as this article from ICanTeachMyChild.com outlines. Here you will find a wide array of crafts and activities perfect for children, but that the whole family can have fun with. Many can be wonderful segways into other lessons. For example, as you make an American flag out of Popsicle sticks, you can talk with your children about what the flag represents, and even a little about its history.

As always, we finished our day shaking our sillies out, along with Raffi, from his CD More Singable Songs  and Mr. Hippo.

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Mr. Hippo is showing us how to shake our sillies out!

We enjoyed celebrating Fourth of July in Storytime today.

Pirates will be our theme next week!

– Miss Jessica

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

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Summer is upon us, and we celebrated the changing season in Storytime today. Our opening song was “If You’re Happy and You Know It” from 40 English Songs for Kids.

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If you’re happy and you know it…

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pat your head…

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like Mr. Tom Cat!

Mouse’s First Summer by Lauren Thompson was our first book. Mouse and his big sister Minka were back, this time experiencing the perfect summer day. As the day began, Mouse and Minka went on a picnic. They ate watermelon and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. They flew kites, and lounged in the grass, watching the clouds drift by. As they day drew to a close, Minka showed Mouse his first firefly, and together they both watched a spectacular fireworks display.

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That watermelon, and peanut butter and jelly sandwich, sure look tasty Mouse.

Our first activity revolved around that most favorite of summertime treats, ice cream. Prior to Storytime, I printed out, and laminated, images of different colored ice cream scoops. Before beginning the activity, I not only placed an image of an ice cream cone on the board, but also handed out the ice cream images to the children. A puppet element was also incorporated into this activity, our glorious goose, Gigi told us in what order she wanted the ice cream scoops put on the cone. As each color was called out, the child with that colored scoop came up and added it to the cone.

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I am Gigi, the goose who loves ice cream! Can you build me an ice cream cone?

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Let’s start by adding some chocolate ice cream.

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Now, put the bubblegum flavor on top of that.

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Next, add my favorite flavor, mint.

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Follow that with strawberry.

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Lemon should definitely come next.

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The flavor on the very top of our cone has to be vanilla.

It’s Vacation Time by Lerryn Korda was our next book. Summer had arrived, and Little Nye and her friends, were planning a vacation to the beach. It took a little longer to leave than expected because Nella had stuffed the suitcase so full of beach items, it would not close! After removing several items, including a beach ball, swim fins and a scuba mask, and finally getting the suitcase to close, a change of plans was announced. Little Nye and her friends would stay home and have their vacation. They inflated the boat, turned on the hose, and played in the backyard. As we read through the story, and items kept getting tossed out of the suitcase, images of those items were tossed out of a picture of a suitcase we had taped to the stage. The children were delighted as things like beach balls and buckets to build sandcastles came flying out of the puppet stage.

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Nella will never get the suitcase to close if things like beach balls…

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and sand pails are stuffed into it.

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Though we could take the boat out and sail through the waves, getting to see things like dolphins.

Sunny Day by Anna Milbourne was our next book. There is nothing quite like a beautiful sunny summer day. This book took us on a journey with a group of children on such a day. We learned things like why some days are sunny, and some are not, why crickets make that chirping sound and how bees make honey. At the end of the day, we all saw a beautiful sunset. During our story, we were joined by Mr. Hippo, who lounged in the shade of a cherry tree, just like the children we read about.

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Enjoy the shade, and the cherries, Mr. Hippo.

Water lilies are a lovely plant that bloom in the summer. We took the idea of that flower, and used it for our next activity. Every child was given a pre-folded paper water lily. Then, one by one they dropped the water lilies into a large tub of water, and watched what happened. As the water seeped along the crevices in the folded paper, the water lilies opened up right before the children’s eyes. The science behind this involved something called capillary action. The water flowed along the thin seams in the paper, and when it did that it caused a reaction pushing the folded paper open. In the background, during this activity, I played several instrumental songs from the CD Circle Time Songs and Games.

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Everyone’s eyes lit up as the water lilies opened.

It’s a Firefly Night by Dianne Ochiltree was our last book. Watching, and trying to catch, fireflies was a wonderful summertime activity that the little girl in this story loved to participate in. When night fell, the little girl, and her faithful dog, ventured out into the yard to catch fireflies. The little girl had her jar, and with her daddy’s help, managed to capture several of the glowing creatures. One by one, she liked to take them out, and watch them glow in her hand, before releasing them back into the night.

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How many fireflies can you catch?

When children get older, summer camps can be a very beneficial experience, as this article from the Huffington Post outlines. Summer camps provide children with a variety of valuable skills such as learning independence, physical activity and acquiring new skills. When children are away at camps like these, they are in an unfamiliar environment, where they are exposed to a variety of activities an people. Learning to manage their relationships, and realizing they possess a wide variety of interests and skills, are some of the benefits of sending children to summer camps.

As always, we ended Storytime by shaking our sillies out along with Raffi, from his CD More Singable Songs.

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Shake your sillies out everyone!

Summer fun has just begun, and we celebrated the season today at Storytime.

Fourth of July will be our theme next week!