Toddler Storytime: Letters & Rhymes

The last session in our “Ready to Read” unit. We covered colors, shapes, opposites, and numbers, and finished off with a session on the alphabet, letters and rhymes.

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Books Read:

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr.
Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham & Paul O. Zelinksy
Jump! by Scott M. Fischer

Introductions: “Let’s All Do A Little Tapping” (To the tune of We Wish You a Merry Christmas). We use bamboo drum sticks for this one.

Opening Song: “We Wave and Say Hello”

Discussion: This group is a little too young to know their alphabet, but we talked about the letters we did know, like the ones at the front of our name.

Book 1: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. The classic introduction to the alphabet. The kids used their drum sticks to amplify the “Boom, Boom!” sound after every “Chicka, Chicka.”

Song: “ABCs”

Fingerplay: Open, Shut Them”

Book 2: Z is for Moose. An adorable and sincerely funny book about a Moose who can’t wait for his turn to come up in the alphabet, and so starts photo-bombing all the other animals on the way to “M.” The kids got a kick out of this one, and had fun trying to spot Moose hiding on pages where he didn’t belong.

Action Rhyme: “Say and Touch”
After learning our letters, we shifted course and talked about rhyming sounds. I had the kids supply some of their own rhymes, and then we moved into this action rhyme that got them up and moving.

Say “beat!” Now touch your feet.
Say “peel!” Now touch your heel.

Repeat with various rhymes, moving up the body until you reach the head. Then I usually supply a rhyme that will leave them sitting, like: Say “brown!” Now sit down.

Book 3: Jump! One of my storytime staples. Jump! has great, rhythmic rhyming text and eye-catching illustrations, plus it always gets the kids moving. I have the kids stand while I read this, and jump as high as they can when we reach the “jump” pages (there are several). Today, a few parents lifted their smaller children into the air, too. It’s always a big hit.

Wrapping Up: This was the last of our sessions on reading concepts, and while this storytime went over well, I’m glad we’ll be moving on to something new. I think this group was too young to fully understand the theme, although the older kids seemed to enjoy it (especially Z is for Moose). “Say and Touch” was also a lot of fun, and the parents liked it, too. I had 25 people in attendance today — right in my sweet spot.

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