Baby Bounce – Farm Theme

farm storytime

It’s been forever since I’ve shared a storytime plan! Since my baby storytimes have been picking up in attendance and I’ve been getting more and more comfortable with them, I wanted to share a couple of my most recent plans.

I’ve been repeating themes for two weeks with different books, but only small differences in activities. So far this is working really well. It gives moms a chance to learn the activities and songs and when we switch to another theme, I try to pick something where I can still make a couple of the activities carry through.

First, everyone introduced themselves and their baby. I let moms share any fun or important things that have happened in the last week.

Then I handed everyone a shaky egg and played “I Know a Chicken” by Laurie Berkner. Of course some babies aren’t ready to hold and shake, but the adults helped. Anytime I’ve done this song in Baby Bounce, it makes all the little ones smile. Our wiggly and walking older babies adore it.

Next, I sang Hello Bubbles while blowing some bubbles for babies. I learned this from Kendra at Read Sing Play. I use it every week after our recorded music.

I played Little Mouse, Little Mouse just once. It works perfectly to do a flannel game after Hello Bubbles, because the babies are still distracted by the bubbles sticking to the carpet, so they don’t try to take down my game while I’m getting it on the board. I always circle the houses with my finger when I’m saying their color.

I read Hurry, Hurry by Eve Bunting. It’s adorable and has just two words on each spread. I did a lot of dialogic reading with this one just out of sheer habit from my mixed-age storytime, but that lead me into my literacy message for the week.

After I closed the book, I said, “It’s wonderful to use your full, normal vocabulary with little ones, even when the book does not. Ask questions and fill in meaning for what’s happening on the page. They may not really understand, but they’re drinking in your words and feeling close to you while you engage with them.”

I used my example baby, a sheepdog puppet, to teach them “When Cows Wake Up In the Morning.” I’ve heard this song done a couple different ways, but I used this version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7V5JyVRfOY Instead of patting our legs, though, I had mamas bounce their babies in time. We did three animals and then we moved on.

Next we did a bounce I learned from Jbrary called This Is the Way the Ladies Ride. I’ve done this one twice and I still find it difficult to remember the words, so I had them written down on a little cheat sheet next to me. My moms love this one.

I found yet another use for my chunky farm puzzle! (See picture above.) I pulled it out and did a version of an activity I learned from Storytime Katie. I sang, “If you’re ever in the farmyard, the farmyard, the farmyard. If you’re ever in the farmyard, you might see a…(puzzle piece animal).” (To the tune of The More We Get Together) I did this with four pieces and the moms liked it because it showed them how to use something they already have around the house in a different way.

I read Honk, Honk! Baa, Baa! by Petr Horacek. It’s very short and cute with just the animals and their sounds.

This week I ended with a baby parade and scarves. This is one of my favorite activities, because it lets the kiddos move around and transition into being active for playtime. I play a recorded song and hand moms a scarf, then explain that they can help their kiddos walk around or hold them and bounce along as they walk. It’s so much fun because it’s unstructured quality time for lifting and smooching and playing peekaboo with scarves.

I ended by letting moms put back their scarves while I set out toys for playtime.

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