Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Shake My Sillies Out by Raffi (Troubadour Learning, 1987)
Oh, the joy preschool and kindergarten children have had with this book you can (and definitely should) read and sing! I've used Shake My Sillies Out for many a transition and steam releasing activity.
Illustrated by David Allender, this song-turned-picture-book delights with colors, words, and story line. Any person working with or loving young children needs this song in their arsenal of wiggle controlling delight producing "things to do with kiddos."
Some ways to use Shake My Sillies Out:
~ Learn the song first. Search Raffi and download the song. Teach to and wiggle with children before picking up the book.
~ Read the book as a picture book.
~ Read the book and sing at the same time. This has the added bonus of getting kids to pay attention to words and page turns.
~ Add props as you sing and wiggle - scarves, ribbons, crepe paper, or other flow-y materials.
~ View the illustrations and get children to help you make up a story that goes with the pictures.
~ Make a shaker by adding buttons to paper towel tubes and taping the ends shut. Let kiddos use markers to decorate the shakers. Sing and shake those sillies! (Caution: Supervise buttons - choking hazard if put into mouths - and securely tape ends closed.)
You may have to act silly and make a fool of yourself! But it's all in fun. Be a kid again.
Wiggle those waggles away.
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Five Green and Speckled Frogs - Illustrated by Constanza Basaluzzo
(Scholastic, Inc., 2008)
What do you get with five green speckled frogs, a great book, music, and a room full of children?
Silly, singing children having lots of fun.
This is one of the all time favorite songs and books of my kinders. No matter which version we sing, they love the story, melody, and motions. We read and sing through each as often as I can stand it.
Of course. I always add or make-up and then add motions - the sillier, the better.
You bet. Some examples are:
~ large cardstock frogs that are colored and laminated. These are held up by five students and go down one by one as the frogs jump into the pool.
~ plastic toy frogs. Just what it sounds like. Those funny, greenish plastic tub or play toys. They love this activity when I also provide a blue towel (the cool pool) and a bumpy, messy log (the speckled log).
~ hand-made puppets. They love making their own green speckled frogs from paper plates, markers, felt, googly eyes, glue, and staplers. Tip: Fold paper plate in half, color the outside green, draw a red tongue on the inside (a strip of red construction paper works better), glue on googly eyes, and add a strap on the top outside to help students to grip the puppet.
~ felt frog stickers on top of wide craft sticks
~ magazine frog cut-outs, glued to cardboard
~ oh, I almost forgot the absolute favorite - froggy bean bags
Definitely. Our favorites are Raffi and CJ's Fundamentals.
You will have so much fun, you may find yourself outside with a net, digging through mucky ponds, hoping to secure a green and speckled frog for your terrarium!
Friday, July 11, 2014
Who Stole the Cookies? by Judith Moffatt (Grosett & Dunlap, Inc., 1996)
Yes, many of my books-you-can-sing are old and well-loved. That is the truth of the matter between books, children, parents, teachers - if you love them, sing them, read them - they will look like it. It reminds me of The Velveteen Rabbit.
Who Stole the Cookies? is a favorite of every young student I have had in class. They love to read and chant the book. This cut-paper illustrated version shows a young girl predicting, using clues, and enlisting animal friends to help solve the mystery of who snitched the cookies. This may be the only time is is OK to steal something!
After our read/sing/chant aloud, we always sit in a circle and play the game that goes hand-in-hand with the book. In the game, each child has a chance to be blamed. I think this may be the only time they want to be blamed for something. I always continue until all have had a turn. And then we make-up who we think stole the cookies.
Eating real cookies after the book and game is the perfect ending.
All: Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar?
Me (or student who was just it): Khloe stole the cookies from the cookie jar!
Khloe: Who me?
All: Yes, you!
Khloe: Couldn't be!
All: Then who?
Khloe: Hayden stole the cookie from the cookie jar!
And then Hayden has a turn. The entire game is echo and response. The more drama, the better. They love it!
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Old MacDonald Had a Farm with Pictures By Holly Berry (Scholastic, 1994).
I may have had this book since it was published in 1994! The edges certainly look well loved.
I love singing books, which leads to children memorizing the words and singing books, which leads to children connecting memorized words to text on pages, which leads to reading and the love of books! What a fun and amazing ride!
Old MacDonald Had a Farm makes its appearance each fall when the FARM theme comes to life. Most students and children are familiar with this song utilizing farm animal sounds. We have a grand time singing, making animal noises, and acting out animal movements.
Berry enlivens this popular children's song by adding the element of animal participation - by allowing them to become band members who play and sing with the Old MacDonald. And a fun time was had by all . . .
You know it. You are humming the song. E-I-E-I-O.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
America the Beautiful (Scholastic Inc., 2001)
Just in time for the 4th of July, check out America the Beautiful.
Put out by Scholastic Inc., this small book delivers big on photographs of the natural beauty, space, vastness, and variety of our country. Large text words spread throughout the book of the first verse can be read, ignored, or enjoyed with the proper melody.
Share what makes our country great.