SLC Book Boy

the storytime ventures of a children's librarian

Night and Day Storytime

Opening: Shake My Sillies Out – Raffi

Book: Daytime Nighttime – William Low



(This was a wonderfully simple book with emphasis on large beautiful images. We let the kids identify each animal that was seen, and made some noises where appropriate as well.) 

Activity: Hey diddle diddle (cow jumped)

(Having ended with an image of the moon, I asked the kids if they knew a nursery rhyme with something that jumped over the moon. Then we had a special guest appearance!) The cow tried to jump behind, under and onto the moon, before the kids helped it remember where it should go. Over the moon! Then we all stood up and did the rhyme with actions. 


Hey diddle diddle, the Cat and the fiddle,

(pretend to play fiddle)

The Cow jumped over the moon.

(jump up)

The little Dog laughed to see such fun,

(hold or tickle belly)

And the Dish ran away with the Spoon.

(run in place)

Book: Let’s sing a lullaby with the Brave Cowboy – Jan Thomas



(Jan Thomas is always great, this was a load of fun. We swayed side to side during the lullaby, and the whole crowd got into it.) 

Activity: Flap any way you want to – adapted from dance any way you want to (Ralphs World)

Flap anyway you want to, flap anyway you please,

flap anyway you want to, but stop when I say ‘sleep.’

(Then we flapped fast, slow, high, and anyway again.

I have a sun/moon that I can flip around, with the moon out for the flapping,

and the sun out for the sleeping!)


Book: Wow! Said the Owl – Tim Hopgood



(A nice interactive book, we let the kids identify all the colors as we came to them. It was a hit!)

Activity: The Napping House – Wood

napping house

(We used our flannel board to tell The Napping House. The kids were well engaged with it.)

Book: Night Light – Nicholas Blechman


(And our last book implemented counting! Each spread lets you count the lights, then turn the page to reveal the vehicle. A very good fit. 

Activity: Parachute

(Then we bounced yellow and blue balls (the sun and moon) on our parachute. Soo many kids, we ended it a bit shorter than expected but it was still fun!) 


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In the Sky Storytime

The second time I did this program, I used the same books, but swapped out some of the activities. 

For our first activity we did a flannel version of “There Was a Bold Lady who Wanted a Star” by Charise Harper. 


And after the book ‘Birds’ we did The Cow Jumped Over the Moon, 


The cow tried to jump behind, under and onto the moon, before the kids helped it remember where it should go. Over the moon! Then we all stood up and did the rhyme with actions. 

Hey diddle diddle, the Cat and the fiddle,

(pretend to play fiddle)

The Cow jumped over the moon.

(jump up)

The little Dog laughed to see such fun,

(hold or tickle belly)

And the Dish ran away with the Spoon.

(run in place)

Opening: Shake My Sillies Out – Raffi

Book: Kite Day – Will Hillendbrand

(This is a nice simple book, with a sweet ending. A parent even commented on what a nice book it was to her child when it was finished.)

Flannel Board: My Friend Rabbit – from the book by Eric Rohmann

(Mouse has a new plane, but Rabbit gets it stuck in a tree! He has an idea to get it back though. My first group of kids wasn’t as attentive, but the 2nd group was pretty engaged.)


Book: Birds – Kevin Henkes

(I quite like this book! It isn’t a narrative, but more a series of observations. Great illustrations.)

Song/Activity: Way Up High in the Apple Tree

 Way up high in the apple tree (hold apple cutout over head)

a little red apple smiled at me.

I shook the tree as hard as I could, (shake arm and drop apple)

down came the apple!

Mmmm was it good!

(We did this with red, green and yellow apples. Then with 2 little, and 3 little apples. The kids love shaking the apples down!)

Book: Butterfly, Butterfly – Petr Horacek

(This is a fantastic book, bright pictures and a lovely pop-up ending that always entrances the kids.)

Flannel Song: Fireworks – from the webpage of Miss Angela

(I had pipe cleaner fireworks to put up, the kids loved making the Boom! and identifying the colors.)

We sit and look at the dark night sky

waiting for the fireworks to start to fly.

Then with a Boom (clap hands) and a flash of light

a big RED firework sparkles in the night!

(continue with other colors)

Book: Kens Cloud – Isabel M. Arques

(I was a little surprised at how well this was received! Even at the end of the storytime the kids were very into it during both my sessions.)

Activity: Bubbles

(I wanted to bounce balloons on our parachute, but didn’t manage to get any. So bubbles worked as a default!)

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Night Creatures Storytime

 Opening: Shake My Sillies Out – Raffi

(I ended up having such a good time with this! And quite a bit of it was thrown together relatively last minute.)

Book: Kittens First Full Moon – Kevin Henkes


(A simple story with lovely large pictures. The group wasn’t quite settled down yet, but there were still some devoted listeners.)

Activity: There’s something in the nighttime (Modified from There’s something in my garden)

 There’s something in the nighttime

that I can’t really see.

There’s something in the nighttime,

now what can it be?

Whoo, Whoo

Hear it’s funny sound?

Whoo, Whoo

An Owl is what I found!

(Continue with other animals, I used an Owl, a cat, a mouse, and a skunk

‘Smell that funny smell? Sniff, sniff, A skunk! You sure can tell!’)

(I use the ‘Something in my Garden’ during book babies, and it was an easy modification for this! I wanted to use a bat, but didn’t have one on hand, so I used what I had. I think the kids weren’t as excited about the skunk as I was.) =P

Book: Owl Babies – Martin Waddell

(Such cute illustrations, and an adorable story. Tried with some success to get the kids saying ‘I want my mommy!’ along with the littlest owl. Quite well received.)

Activity: Owl Freeze Game (modified from the song ‘Silly Dance Contest’ by Jim Gill)

 Fly any way you want to, fly any way you please

fly any way you want to, but stop when I say Sleep!

(continue with fly as high as you want to, fly as fast as you want to,

then fly any way you want to again to end.)

(I made a two-sided moon/sun visual and explained to the kids that we were going to be owls. That means that if the sun is out we have to be asleep! Then I’d flip it around to the moon for us to be owls flapping our wings. I used a freeze game format, shouting out Sleep! after they’d been flying for a bit and everyone lay down. Loads of fun!)

Book: Dark Night – Dorothee de Monfreid

(Everyone was really into the storytime at this point, and helped out making the animals noises. A fun simple story, the best kind.)

Activity: Bears Toothache (Modified from the book The Bears Toothache by David McPhail)

I was sleeping in my bed last night, when I heard a noise out my window.


Do you know what it was? A Bear! This was a nice bear, but it had a toothache, that’s why it was grumpy. 

I decided to help out, so I found the hurt tooth and I pulled, and pulled. But it was too stuck! 

Then the bear thought chewing on some gum might help to make it loose. 


But he just swallowed the gum. No more gum for you bear!

I tried to hit the tooth with my pillow, but the bear ducked!

I guess he didn’t want to get hit in the face. I thought I’d try one more thing.

So I got some string and tied it to the tooth. Then I held tight, and the bear jumped out the window.

Look! The tooth! The bear said ‘Thank you’ and let me keep the tooth because I was such a big help.

What do you do with a tooth? Put it under your pillow! Good night.

(The audience was really engaged with this, probably because of my huge bear! One little girl came up to stand right beneath it, so I had her hold the string when the bear jumped out the window. Very cute and fun for everyone!)

Book: A Book of Sleep – Il Sung Na

(I love the illustrations in this book. The story is very simple, but the kids had fun identifying the animals.)

Activity: Bats in the belfry

One bat hanging in the belfry,

One bat flew in threw the door.

Two bats hanging in the belfry

snuggled up and flying no more.

(continue with increasing numbers, we went to six)

(I threw this together the night before while at the children’s desk. I had four kids ask to make a bat while I was working on it, so I decided that could be a craft for after the storytime! I traced a pattern and copied it onto colored paper. The kids choose the color bat they wanted, colored it, and then I taped on a pipe cleaner loop that bent over for feet so the bats could hang upside down from the kids fingers. Everyone had a great time with it!)


In the Dark Dark Woods

Each of these sheets took about on hour, I tried just copying an image but they came out too dark, dark. So I permanent markered them. For the transitions I would lift the transparency and the image would go out of focus, then I’d swap the new one and lower it. I think it was pretty cool and effective (the ghost just ‘popped’ out though, for scare factor).

In the dark, dark woods…

…there was a dark, dark house. In the dark, dark house..

.there was a dark, dark room. And in the dark, dark room…

…there was a dark, dark cupboard.

(I have a rectangle of paper that covers the cupboard, which I remove for the shelves.)

In the dark, dark cupboard there were some dark, dark shelves. In the dark, dark shelves…

…there was a dark, dark box. In the dark, dark box…

…there was a Ghost!


Nighttime Storytime

Opening: Shake My Sillies Out – Raffi

Book: Night’s Nice – jp Emberly


Song/Sign: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star (see at end)

 (Used sign language with the song to make it more engaging.)

Book: Dark Night – jp De Monfreid


Song: Last Night I Had a Dream – from the CD Whaddaya think of that? by Laurie Berkner

 (acted out all the different animals that we dreamed we were.)

Book: Quiet Night – jp Singer

 Flannelboard: Napping House by Audrey Wood


(made a flannelboard with each character separate but stackable. Then had the ‘woken’ characters as well.)

Book: Good Night, Mr. Night – jp Yaccarino


Song: 10 in the Bed

(Used this from a CD, don’t remember which. I’d post it once I figure it out!)

The Parts:

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
How I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
How I wonder what you are

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