Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Seattle Story Time Tour - Douglas-Truth Branch

Welcome to a new recurring series of posts that I am calling 'Seattle Story Time Tour'. I was challenged by my WLA mentor to visit all 27 Seattle Public Library branches by April of this year. As I thought about this, I decided to make my mission to visit a story time from each branch. Here is my very first visit.

Branch: Douglas-Truth
Storyteller: Ms. Lynn
Age/Type: Toddler Story Time

Right away I know this story time is going to be fun. The kids outside the door are all repeating to one another: "Ms. Lynn, Ms. Lynn!" We go inside and Ms. Lynn asks all the caregivers and toddlers to take off their shoes because today we are trying out a new activity-- a parachute. I've always wanted to try out a parachute in a story time and today I get to see it in action. It sits in the middle of the room, big and colorful. Waiting. For those of you unfamiliar with the playtime parachute, here is a little girl using one:
Photo by: Lance McCord

Ms. Lynn starts the story time traditionally with a Hello Song. She points to a little girl and asks everyone the color of her shirt and then they sing a song that goes like this:

"Mary is wearing her green shirt, green shirt, green shirt. Mary is wearing her green shirt all day long."

She repeats the song with a number of different children and then moves on to the first book, which is "Bounce" by Doreen Cronin. All of the kids stand up and bounce along.

Next Ms. Lynn puts on a modified version of "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" that involves counting and a fast rhythm.

They read the classic Keith Baker "Big Fat Hen" big book next. Lots of great counting and movement.

The next activity is a song to the tune of Frere Jacques that goes like this:

"Walking, walking, walking, walking. Hop, hop hop. Hop, hop hop. Running, running, running. Running, running, running. Now we stop. Now we stop."

Finally we get to the part all the toddlers have anxiously been waiting for: the parachute! Everyone gathers around the outside of the parachute and holds the edge. They sing a few verses of "Ring Around the Roise" while walking and spinning the parachute.

The next parachute activity is waving it like ocean tides. It gets faster, then slower again. Then Ms. Lynn puts on the Elevator Song and they take the parachute up and down.

By far the best part (as far as the toddlers were concerned) comes next. Ms. Lynn puts clear plastic balls on top of the parachute and they make the balls bounce. The children help put the balls away afterward.

They said goodbye by letting the children underneath the parachute and singing the goodbye song. A few adorable little girls have mad scientist hair as the static takes over. Kind of like this kid:
Photo by: Marcus Nelson

After the goodbye song, some of the toddlers and caregivers choose to stay for a while longer playing with toys and mingling.

It all looked very fun. Thanks for letting me sit in and observe, Ms. Lynn!


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