Kelly Thank you so much for being here today. We are excited to share with you information about an innovative HCL project that is designed to increase early literacy through learning activities. I am going to talk a little about why we starting the Storytime extender project and its importance and then I am going to turn it over to Larry who will describe more about the components of a storytime extender.
Kelly A Storytime Extender is designed to extend learning beyond storytime. Research has found that there are six early literacy skills children need to be ready to read. Research has also found that when children encounter new information through reading experiences they are better able to internalize this information when it is paired with subsequent related activities. For example, if you read a story about ducks you could pair it with an activity that allow children to make their own ducks. This would reinforce the vocabulary and concepts learned in storytime. Children can physically see a ducks bill are see where a duck lives. There are two ways to do a Storytime Extender – in the library after storytime or given to parents as a take home activity. As a way to extend what was learned in Storytime with early literacy rich activities in the library. Extend storytime into the home environment by giving parents a handout of how to do storytime and activities at home. As we will learn a storytime extender includes: books, songs, rhymes and activities.
Kelly Since MLA has had many presentations about the 6 early literacy skills, our presentation does not cover the six skills, but we want to convey that the SE were created with the 6 skills in mind. For more information on the 6 early lit skills visit Every Child Ready to Read
It is through play that children learn; they explore their world though the objects around them. We can directly encourage this by providing children with fun, early literacy based activities. By looking at the 6 early literacy skills in a different way, we can see how through activities we can enhance early literacy learning. All of this is in addition to books. Phonological awareness: animal sounds Vocabulary: Learning the names of objects: Things that Go – parts of a helicopter Narrative skills: retell story with puppets Print Awareness: Careers - badge Print Motivation: make your own book Letter Recognition: shape mobile Children will benefit from engaging activities, but the will benefit much more by adults interacting with them. Because of this all storytime extenders are designed for child and caretaker to do together. Most importantly all of the activities are fun! Child learn best when they are enjoying that they are doing
Cathy Note about themes – I was thinking that we would mention something about why our extenders are theme oriented. Themes help children learn within a context.
Johannah There are a variety of websites where you can find activities that are appropriate for preschoolers. Here is a list of a few sites that I have found particularly useful. In looking for an appropriate activity, there are a few questions that I ask myself: Is this a craft that a preschooler can make? I shy away from anything that requires the child to cut paper in a detailed shape. If there is such cutting, I have it prepared ahead of time. This is a great project for volunteers. A good preschooler craft normally has no more than four steps: color, simple cuts, paste or tape, and then play. Are the craft materials involved realistic? Photocopied paper, construction paper, crayons, cotton balls, scissors, popsicle sticks, paper plates and glue are good supplies with which to stock your cabinet. Avoid costly supplies that you may use only once. Supplies like glitter and sequins are unnecessary and will only lead to a mess at home. Is this a literacy rich activity? It doesn’t take much to make an activity literacy rich. Later in this presentation we’ll give examples of some literacy rich activities. One of the easiest ways to choose a literacy rich activity is tie the activity in with that day’s theme. If your storytime theme is fish, then make a rainbow fish. Encourage the parents to discuss the activity and storytime at home. Perhaps the parent could encourage the child to recall their favorite book from storytime while working on the activity. In the example of the fish activity, the parent could ask the child to name different fish of which they know, including fish they eat, pet fish, and famous fish like Nemo. These discussions can reinforce vocabulary and narrative skills.
A few other resources that I have found useful in planning storytimes and take home storytime extenders are the following: Crafty Kids offers toddler friendly activities. Not every activity is one that I would use—especially the ones involving paint. However, I often find inspiration in this book. Hand Rhymes offers a lot of action songs that reinforce different styles of learning. They’re great for those of us who are not terrific singers and they allow antsy children to move. This book has a variety of fingerplays that I would include in storytime or in a take home storytime extender. ELSIE stands for the Early Literacy Storytime Ideas Exchange. It is a database created and maintained by Hennepin County. It contains suggestions for excellent books, songs, and fingerplays to use at a storytime or for parents to use at home. Each entry describes how the selected book or song helps children learn early literacy skills. You can search by keyword to find books on a given theme. Ms. Cox’s Pre-K Class suggests books, action songs, and activities centered around a given theme. For example, the theme of “Rainforests” has book suggestions such as “So Say the Little Monkey,” rhyme suggestions like, “Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree,” and a craft suggestion of making a snake out of clay.
Johannah The first activity idea that I have is a mini nursery rhyme books. This activity requires printed paper and crayons. The State Library of Louisiana offers 24 printable mini books that librarians can print for free. These rhyme books help children develop a variety of early literacy skills. The rhyming words help develop phonological awareness. Incorporating the text into the art project helps develop print awareness. Nursery rhymes are always rich with unusual and new vocabulary words. Finally, each panel can be used with the caretaker to develop narrative skills.
The next activity idea comes from the website “First-School.” This requires printed paper, pre-cutting, glue and crayons. Children assemble a craft out of shapes, including a number of “c”s. Learning shapes leads to learning letters, and this craft highlights letter knowledge.
The self-portrait activity that we included on our “All About Me” storytime extender requires scissors, glue old magazines, paper plates and yarn. The child cuts out facial features similar to his or her own, glues them on the paper plate and adds yarn for hair. With this activity, children can practice vocabulary words.
Johannah (supplies needed: paper bags, photocopied Paul Bunyan cut out*, crayons, glue sticks) *Would you like me to photocopy these and have a volunteer cut them out? Let me know how many or I can send you the template through interlibrary mail. At the end of this presentation, we invite everyone to join us for a literacy rich activity. It is one that all of us Minnesotan librarians will appreciate – a Paul Bunyan hand puppet. To create this activity for the Minnesota storytime that I used it for, I drew the Paul Bunyan body and face, photocopied it, and had a volunteer use a large paper cutter to cut it out. This craft was used in my library. I set up tables and place the Paul Bunyan body parts, paper bags, crayons, and glue sticks on the tables. The children created a wide variety of eclectic Paul Bunyans. I then encouraged the children to play with their puppets – have Paul say his name, say something to another puppet, etc. In this craft, children were able to practice vocabulary words while coloring by talking about the different parts of Paul Bunyan. His moustache, his overalls, his checkered shirt. They could practice their narrative skills by engaging the puppet in some sort of action with the other puppets. Because the craft was fun and related to the day’s stories, the children were more motivated to enjoy books and reading. After the activity, clean-up only required using some cleaning solution on the tables to clear them of glue and crayons.
Cathy Please add bullets that you would like!
Kelly This entire project was made possible through the use of interns. Interns created, edited, and electronically assembled each of the SE. This is just one example of how interns can be of great help to your library! In the Twin Cities, we are lucky to have The College of St. Catherine Library of Information Science program, but master’s students are not the only source for library interns. High school students interested in working with children – early childhood education students – childcare certificate programs – creative parents Internships are not only just a great opportunity for the library, they are also a wonderful experience for the students you work with. Larry and Johannah
1. Storytime Extenders: Extending the storytime experience outside of the library Cathy Brennan Youth Services Librarian, North Regional Library Johannah Genett Youth Services Librarian, Franklin Library Larry Longard Early Literacy Programming Intern Kelly Wussow Youth Services Librarian, Brookdale
2. What is a Storytime Extender? <ul><li>Allow children to have a storytime experience at home. </li></ul><ul><li>Demonstrate to parents the importance of reading, singing, and playing with their children at home. </li></ul><ul><li>Provide suggested books, rhymes, songs, and activities for parents and caretakers to do with their children. </li></ul>
3. Early Literacy Skills <ul><li>Storytime extenders are created with the six skills children need to be ready to read in mind. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Phonological Awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vocabulary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Print Awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Print Motivation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Narrative Skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Letter Knowledge </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/alsc/ecrr/ecrrhomepage.cfm </li></ul></ul>
4. Early Literacy Beyond Books <ul><li>Play is a child’s work! It is through play that children learn about their world. </li></ul><ul><li>By encouraging playful, creative experiences between caretaker and child we can encourage early literacy learning and promote that the best way for a child to learn is by having fun. </li></ul>
5. Supporting Parents <ul><li>Storytime extenders are another opportunity to help parents with early literacy. </li></ul><ul><li>There are still many parents who are unaware of the importance of reading to children. </li></ul><ul><li>What parents do and don’t want to hear. </li></ul>
8. Storytime Resources <ul><li>Crafty Kids: Fun Projects for You and Your Toddler by Rosie Hankin </li></ul><ul><li>Hand Rhymes by Marc Brown </li></ul><ul><li>ELSIE http://www.hclib.org/BirthTo6/ELSIE.cfm </li></ul><ul><li>Ms. Cox’s Pre-K Class </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.prekinders.com/index.htm </li></ul>
9. Early Literacy Skills and Creative Play <ul><li>Mini Nursery Rhyme Books </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.state.lib.la.us/la_dyn_templ.cfm?doc_id=826 </li></ul>
10. Early Literacy Skills and Creative Play <ul><li>Cat Craft </li></ul>
11. Early Literacy Skills and Creative Play <ul><li>Self Portrait </li></ul>
12. Let’s Play! <ul><li>Paul Bunyan Hand Puppet </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Paper Bag </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photocopied Paul Bunyan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Crayons </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Glue </li></ul></ul>
13. Storytime Extenders in Practice <ul><li>Choose theme and activities – Integrating information happens in context </li></ul><ul><li>Planning and preparation – Before the day and on the day </li></ul><ul><li>Participation over perfection - A cooperative helping model </li></ul>
14. Early Literacy Internship <ul><li>Using Interns </li></ul><ul><li>Personal Accounts </li></ul><ul><li>Use of Volunteers </li></ul>